Re: A news item and subject which I just want to check out (83) March 10, 2023

Long-awaited WBC, World Baseball Classic, started on March 9, Thursday. I watched the television of the first match against China, and to begin with, I was surprised by the luxury of starting members of Japanese team “Samurai Japan”. And Mr. Ohtani. When watching him, he seemed to rather enjoy the pressure, and I realized that he probably stands out among the majors. There would be no doubt that in addition to the exceptional qualities, extraordinary effort leads to mind control. His pitching and hitting action brought victory to Japan. Good!
Next is the topic of low dimensions, and Mr. Higashitani, also known as GaaSyy, a member of the House of Councilors and a member of the NHK Party who has never been to the House of Councilors since he was elected in the House of Councilors election in July last year. He also ignored resolution of the House of Councilors called “apology at the plenary meeting”. The expulsion is a matter of course, and he should reimburse all annual expenses and terminal allowances received to the country. And who elected such a person as a member of the National Assembly is the people, and that is what the media has to focus on, and am I the only one who thinks that the media seems to be forced to dance with him?

■■There were a few interesting topics this week.
■Russian invasion to Ukraine:
One year has passed since the start of invasion, and intense battles and defenses are being fought in the eastern part, and no clue to a truce remains in sight, and it looks like it is getting protracted. There would be no doubt that Russia raises the feeling of war-weariness of the people of Western countries, and is aiming to break cohesion. Russia seems to be planning public opinion in neighboring Georgia and Moldova as disturbance tactics. The West seems to be drawn into the Russian pace in some way. Once the West is frightened here, it could lead to high-handedness and an escalation of aggression by Nazi Germany before the World WarⅡ. And once Russia gains momentum and Russian “invasion succeeds”, it is worried about that China will join hands with Russia and be activate hard line measures against Taiwan and maritime expansion, just as pre-war Japan formed the Tripartite Pact between Japan, Germany, and Italy and entered the Pacific War. Humanity is at a major turning point in history now. We can’t let Ukraine lose at all costs.
■The failure of the large rocket “H3” and the decline in technology:
The large rocket “H3” unfortunately failed on March 7. Immediately after the launch, it was reported “success” but “failed” after14 minutes. I thought “Oh, no way”. This is continuing from the failure of the small rocket “Epsilon” unit 6 in October last year. The only way for Japan, no resources country, to find a way is to hone its technological development capabilities, but the current situation is extremely serious.
From an amateur’s point of view, I feel that Japan’s technological development world is very closed and there is little participation and activity of women, and it is constitutionally inflexible and lacks fineness. By the way, the percentage of women in Japan aiming for STEM, which is science, technology, engineering and mathematics, field is the lowest among OECD comparable countries. A bias that “women are not suited to the sciences” seems to be strong in Japan.
And average research and development expenditure per company in Japan decreased by 25% in the last 10 years, but the United States increased by 2.3 times. And it is said that China increased by 34%. And according to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, investing in people by Japanese companies other than OJT against GDP from 2010 to 2014 is 0.1%, but in the United States and France there is about 2% and the gap is wide, even though comparison period is different. The public and private sectors have to think seriously how to rebuild such situation.
■We can’t be optimistic on Japanese economy:
It is said that distribution inventory of construction materials such as timber and steel materials has been glutted recently. Revised real GDP from October to December last year per annum was 0.1%, flat from the previous quarter. As a background of the downward revision from the preliminary figure of the increase by 0.6%, the downside in private consumption is pointed out, and weak resilience of Japanese economy was highlighted again.
The Cabinet Office estimates that “supply-demand gap” of Japanese economy from October to December last year is minus 1.9%, amount to demand shortfall of 11 trillion yen. And the growth potential rate, potential GDP growth rate indicating supply capacity was 0.5% at an annualized rate compared to the previous quarter.
From such economic situation, according to Tokyo Shoko Research, the number of national corporate bankruptcies with debt of 10 million yen or more in February was 577 increased by 25.7% compared with the same month a year earlier and surpassed the previous year for the 11th consecutive month. This is the first time in 13 years and 10 months. It seems that repayment start of “zero and zero loan” which is substantially without collateral and interest is getting in full swing, and shortness of breath type bankruptcy is increasing. By industry, the number of bankruptcies of transportation with the largest increase is 36, 2.3 times. It seems that high fuel prices and labor shortage affected.
The key to economic growth from now on is the trend in wage increases, and significant wage increases and full answers stand out in large companies. The problem is the trend in wage increases in small and medium-sized enterprises which account for 99.7% of all companies and about 70% of total number of employees. The Corporate Price Index in December increased by 10.2%, but the Consumer Price Index remains at 4.0%. This can be seen as that price increases are being passed on at the large enterprise level, but it is not enough at small and medium level. In Europe and the United States, corporate price and consumer price are linked almost simultaneously, and industrial structure issues in Japan emerge.

≪P.S.≫ The number of welfare applications in 2022 was 227 thousand, increased by about 0.8% compared to the previous year, and increased for the third consecutive year. Until 2019, it was on a downward trend, but has surpassed the previous year from 2020 when corona infection had spread. The Japanese government has been spending 77 trillion yen as a counter measure against corona, and it is necessary to verify its use and effect. Besides, various type   of crime and bullying are on the rise. I can’t help but feel that the country called Japan is somehow floating aimlessly.

Other blogs