Try "Dogs and Demons" by Alex Kerr for the current state of Japanese society.
Added later by Harlan: Titles without any kind of description will be deleted in the future. Apparantly, this is a controversial book.
"In what may prove to be a highly controversial book, Kerr argues that Japan is in big trouble: a self-destructive country that is systematically destroying its landscape, its environment, its very culture by adherence to ideas and policies that are decades out of date. The author describes land-preservation schemes that end up destroying the land; a national health program that's near collapse; an education system that values conformity over originality; money-eating government programs that no one can seem to stop. In 1994, Japan produced 91.6 million tons of concrete (30 times as much as the U.S.), much of it used to build structures that serve no purpose. In 1998, Japan's government spent $136 billion on public works, more than what it cost to build the Panama Canal. It's hard to know if Kerr hits the mark here, but he makes a strong case. Expect him to start showing up on talk shows soon, and when he does, the requests for this inflammatory position paper will begin to build." -David Pitt, American Library Association
Edited by harlan (03/06/06 10:38 PM)
I only do Shorinji Kempo for kicks.