Forget the people, Japan would rather kill whales

  • Forget the people, Japan would rather kill whales

    Want to know why Japan's earthquake recovery efforts are moving in slow motion? Ask the whales.

    Tokyoites have grown accustomed to shocking news items since the earth shook and the oceans rose: the nuclear meltdown has proven far worse than the Government admitted; radioactive cesium made its way into baby food; more leaks were found in the damaged Fukushima reactor; and warnings by seismologists still go unheeded.

    Yet the tale of the whales and the $30 million is what proved most disturbing...

    ...Both story lines, supporting whalers and pointless political posturing, are microcosms of why Japan isn't rising to this year's challenges. What we have is a failure to adapt to a dynamic set of problems that threaten economic well-being.

    Take Tokyo Electric Power Company, a poster child of bad management that makes the shenanigans at Olympus Corp look harmless. Tepco's safety failures are responsible for the radiation still leaking into the air and water 210km from Tokyo. Yet Tepco hasn't been nationalised or delisted from the stock exchange. Instead of reform, there's talk of bail-outs.