The only good thing about being stuck in an airport lounge due to weather delays is that you get time to think while Hughie sorts out his inconvenient whims, often quite random things like the meaning of life and why don’t men ride side saddle.
Today’s synaptic quirk features whales and the Japanese. The International Court of Justice in a 12-4 decision have banned whaling in the Sothern Ocean, dismissing Japan’s contention that killing 1000 Minke whales every year for “lethal research” had no basis whatsoever.
The interesting issue is that Japan have unreservedly accepted the decision, stating that their role as a good international citizen is more important to them than continuing whaling around Antarctica, something they believe to be a “cultural imperative”.
This may help us understand how Japan has got through the last 25 years of recession and depression so calmly. The West fell into deep malaise when we suffered through a few quarters of the Great Recession of ’08 an ’09 yet the Japanese have lived with a moribund economy, 80% falls in house prices, and a 60% drop in share values despite a 50% plus return in 2013 with nary a raised voice.
On top of this, they are trusting in their current government to pull them out of their mess, even approving of them turning over generations of traditions in many areas of their economy. This phlegmatic attitude makes them a very interesting investment idea as the world awaits the outcome of their radical – and very astonishing – experiment.