2011 Youth In Asia Passage

1318 words 6 pages
RAFFLES INSTITUTION
2011 YEAR 6 PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION

GENERAL PAPER
PAPER 2
8806/02

Wednesday 31 August 2011 1 hour 30 minutes

RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION
RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION
RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION
RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION RAFFLES INSTITUTION

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And it's not just that Japan's politicians and bureaucrats are dull. They also form an Establishment phalanx with Japanese industry. In a phenomenon known as amakudari, which literally means "descent from the heavens," retiring government officials often take on top jobs at companies, some of which they were once charged with regulating. The cozy ties between government and Big Business are exemplified by Tokyo Power Electric Co., the operator of the damaged Daiichi nuclear plant, whose executives are beneficiaries of amakudari. The power company has been criticized not only for being less than forthcoming with information about the ongoing nuclear crisis but also for securing a license for an ageing reactor earlier this year without making adequate safety checks on equipment that ended up failing during the March 11 disasters.

Outside the Establishment, though, the ice may be cracking. In Tokyo, one unlikely change agent could be 38-year-old Yujiro Taniyama, who has used Facebook to organise earthquake donations. Brash and flashy, the sometime TV entertainer is running against Ishihara, whom he refers to as "a dinosaur," in the race to be Tokyo's next governor. Taniyama, who grew up outside Japan and wants the country to embrace internationalism, won't win. For one thing, election regulations prohibit the use of the Internet for

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