Takahiro Miyao's Radio Institute of Global Communications: No. 5, March 7, 2004
Takahiro MIYAO (Professor, GLOCOM)
Partial transcript and translation from Prof. Miyao's Radio Program, posted here with permission of Radio Tampa/Radio Nikkei
|Takahiro Miyao's Radio Institute of Global Communications: No. 5|
|Radio Tampa (Short Wave 501); SKY Perfect TV (501 Channel)|
|Broadcast time:||March 7 (Sunday) 18:10-18:40|
|Recording place:||Recorded in Radio Tampa's Studio|
2. Virtual Discussion
3. Trend Research
||Radio Program (Windows Media Player)|
(Mainly in Japanese but some parts in English)
Asia Station Web site (in Japanese)
Hello, how are you. Today we will focus on an exciting topic, China's development, in the first half of this program, and have a telephone interview with a China specialist originally from mainland China, discussing the issue of China's housing market. Then in the trend research corner, we take up one of Japan's representative character goods, Hello Kitty, in the context of Japanese pop culture. It should be very interesting.
Tsurumi paper: "President George Bush and the Gilded Age"
First, we take up New York City University Professor Yoshihiro Tsurumi's opinion paper, which is currently posted on our GLOCOM Platform. Professor Tsurumi, who once taught President George W. Bush as a graduate student at Harvard, is very critical of Mr. Bush, and says that there is some similarity between what President Bush is doing and the so-called Gilded Age that the U.S. experienced about a century ago, because President Bush's policies are benefiting rich households and large corporations exemplified by his tax cuts, which in effect have brought the "jobless recovery." Prof. Tsurumi is warning that the U.S. under the Bush administration might lead to another Gilded Age, when America's democracy could be stifled and the U.S. would embark on imperialistic expansions. The reader should take note that Professor Tsurumi is a royal democrat and always critical of Republican administrations, and this kind of heated argument is getting hotter as the presidential elections are approaching.
Gyohten paper: "The Essence of the Chinese Currency Problem"
Now I wish to mention one more piece, that is to be posted on Monday, March 8. That is Mr. Toyoo Gyohten's interesting article, "The Essence of China's Currency Problem," where Mr. Gyohten argues that contrary to popular belief, it should not be a big issue whether the undervalued Chinese yuan is giving unfair advantage to Chinese products, exporting deflation and unemployment to other countries. A more fundamental problem is that China as well as the global economy for that matter will suffer from excess capacity in China's exporting industry by keeping the value of its currency too low for too long. So, Mr. Gyohten is proposing an international currency negotiation among major countries, this time including China and Korea, preferably on the Japan side to negotiate with the U.S. and Europe. Of course, the question is whether Japan can exercise such leadership in Asia regarding this important issue. What do you think?
So, there are so many interesting issues surrounding China these days. Now we will interview a China specialist, Ms. Qin Yan (Tsubame Watanabe in Japanese), who is working as an interpreter and translator in Japan. She is particularly knowledgeable about China's real estate market and housing condition, so let's ask her in our interview.
(Interview with Ms. Qin Wan, conducted in Japanese)
In this trend research corner, we will focus on Japanese pop culture and especially one of the most celebrated character goods in Japan, that is Hello Kitty. Actually, on February 19, two notable journalists, Mr. Ken Belson of New York Times and Mr. Brian Bremner of Business Week, who recently wrote a book entiled "Hello Kitty," gave a talk at our monthly seminar at GLOCOM, and they pointed out that Hello Kitty represents something uniquely Japanese in that its visual image is most important and its philosophy or background is secondary. Still Hello Kitty is so popular, earning half a billion dollars every year and has become an important part of Japan's character goods market, whose total size is 16 billion dollars or 2 trillion yen. Hello Kitty is probably the best example of combining "kawaii (cute) culture" and commercialism, supported by consumers who can attach their own values to this innocent character for their satisfaction, according to Mr. Ken Belson and Mr. Brian Bremner.
If you are interested in this topic, then look at an English summary of their seminar (www.glocom.org/special_topics/activity_rep/20040224_miyao_soft) and the March issue of our Newsletter (www.glocom.org/newsletters). You can also watch Ken Belson's video interview at the following URL: http://www.glocom.org/videoindex.html
Today we have taken up various topics from China's housing market to Japan's character goods market. If you are interested in listening to our past broadcast program, you can do so by going to our homepage http://www.radionikkei.jp/joho and click the "on-demand" section in the upper righthand corner. I hope you enjoyed today's program. Our next program will be on the first Sunday in April, that is, April 4. I hope I will see you then.