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A Japanese Vision of the American Dream
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Essay by:Hitomi Takami
Emporia State University
As a non-traditional student from Japan, it would be easy to say to America, just follow Japan. However, Japan has many difficulties which are similar to the ones facing the United States. The fatal day of financial capitalism suddenly arrived on September 15, 2008. Lehman Brothers in the United States collapsed with it debt; this “Lehman’s shock” still startles the world. Japan had a similar financial challenge, and Japan needed over 10 years to recover from bubble’s heavy burst. According to Naotake Kato, professor emeritus in Japan: the idea that injection of taxpayers’ money will make effective demand big; this fires up business from the inside. He thinks this is lack of foresight of the United States. He says the Unites States needs a long-term plan for 20 years at least.
According to the data of the Cabinet Office in Japan, advanced countries like the United States and Japan continued to have negative growth and the drop in GDP was big during the first three quarters in 2009. On the other hand, developing countries like China and India had a decrease the growth of GDP, but they did not into fall negative territory. This seems to indicate that the relation of the United States and Japan is very tight, and Japan is influenced by the United States strongly.
The United States has been borrowing to buy goods through the trade with foreign countries. Namely, they had been made up trade deficit (i.e., importing more than exporting) by borrowing. Foreign countries needing to invest buy U.S. government bonds and other financial things.
Unfortunately, a solution of overcoming this recession is still unclear. However, economics seems suggest, the United States government seems like misunderstanding the meaning of words “American Dream”. The people in the United States might change this way of thinking. It does not mean only the nation’s list of top 1 percent enjoy the benefits brought about by an advanced economy. Edward Wolff, a professor of economics at New York University says, “in the United States, the richest 1 percent of households owns 38 percent of all wealth.” According to the National Center for Children in Poverty, “roughly 72 percent of Americans believe that the poor can become rich, and this belief has long been tied to common definitions of the American dream.” However, it does not seem like the poor in America can escape poverty; they can only dream about it.
After all, the United States has rich resources and wealth that was made by a large amount of resources; it seems to widen gap in the American society. Can most people become the rich? The poor people dream of what will not come true in present society in America.
The United States government is not required to balance its budget. It does not seem to stop the waste of resources or narrow the gap in the society. This will require Americans to change their thinking and minds. I love the American dream and I want it to be real. I want Americans to be thinking and understand about others’ sorrow and pain. The United States can overcome these tough times and can get rich in the true meaning of the term. I think it takes both money and heart. When we sacrifice all of society can become richer.
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