I am not sure if you remember 1993’s Rising Sun (with Wesley Snipes and Sean Connery). I watched it the other day and I was really surprised… Not at the phony acting and weak plot, but with the incredible anti-Japan hysteria that basically guides the movie from beginning to end.
Watching bad movies is an easy way to remember the near panic that was the US in the late 80s/ early 90s as far as the imminent Japan’s world domination. Remember Gung Ho (1986 – Michael Keaton) or Black Rain (1989 – Michael Douglas, Andy Garcia)? Oh, the Japanese were buying the whole country and the Yakuza was the real deal baby.
Now what is interesting about all of that is that nobody really thought that the Japanese economy would slow down. Nobody predicted it, and even now a days the reasons for it are debatable. But what is undeniable is just how much hyperbole was being pushed by the media those days.
But just this week I read this article that tell us that Japan has not only slowed down… they are falling apart and at risk of becoming a land of “Herbivorous Ladylike Men”! Not sure how I missed all of that when I visited Japan a few years ago… But if the Media is telling us then it must be true!
Now instead of Yakuza, PETA is becoming the main institution of the Great Land of Nippon. Next thing you know Godzilla will come back in pink as a gay monster who wants to make friends in Facebook. Maybe Paul Krugman has a Keynesian answer for that one!
Today we found out that the H1N1 pandemic is over. Last year this was again like the end of the world. I have friends that cancelled their travel plans and people around here who would avoid leaving the house to go to crowded places. I can guarantee that Malaria killed more people in the last few weeks that the pig flu did throughout its bright but brief rise to fame.
Also this week, we learned that even though no oil at all reached the beaches in Florida, tourists are nowhere to be found. Ah, but who cares right? At least BP’s CEO was fired! Hurray!
But don’t despair: We now know that an asteroid is bound to hit Earth. Just make sure to be out of town by September 24, 2182.
I really don’t understand this fascination with disaster and drama. At some point, don’t people get this? I mean, you can go insane if you really stress out about every single danger and threat that the media tell us about.
This is like the boy and the wolf story. Will we really know when a real threat comes up?