Chapter 5 How should reform and nation-building be carried out?
(1) The 1956 Economic White Paper
Now then, what is necessary for today’s Japan to make a full-scale transition to the Great Collaboration society, which has the characteristics described above? Basically, LOHAS is spreading quietly among a broad range of Japanese people. Hence, the trend of the times would spontaneously be in the direction of LOHAS. But at times an “impetus” is needed to accelerate a trend of the times.
Watching Japan today, I feel the atmosphere is similar to that around the 30th year of the Showa period (i.e., 1955). In the following year, the 1956 Economic White Paper stated that “the post-war period is over.” I will quote from this White Paper at some length:
“The ‘post-war period’ is over. Now we are about to face a different situation. Growth through recovery is over. Hereafter growth will be supported by modernization. And the progress of modernization can only be achieved through swift and stable economic growth.
Adoption of new things always entails resistance. As regards those parts of the economy and society that lag behind, we may feel as if their contradictions are temporarily aggravated all the more by modernization. However, in the long term, the contradictions in small and medium-sized enterprises, labor, agriculture, as well as other parts of the economy and society can only be reconciled through economic development. If modernization is the only course the nation’s economy can take, then the people should mutually share the burden of this task according to each individual’s capacity.
Modernization ― or transformation ― is a process of remodeling oneself. This surgical operation will not be painless. In the early years of the Meiji period, our predecessors conducted this surgery to transform Japan from a backward agricultural country to an advanced industrial nation, albeit in the Asian region. Thereafter, the Japanese economy did not undergo a major structural reform of comparable scale. Instead, Japan avoided the pain of transforming itself and attempted to transform the outside world to conform to its own requirements. This attempt eventually led to the country’s military expansion.”
(Date published / 公開日： 6/25/2021)
(Date last updated / 最終改訂日: 6/25/2021)