the japanese – still classy

remember how the japanese didn’t loot and pillage after the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear disaster? well, now they’re showing off again:

“Honest Japanese Return $78 Million in Cash Found in Quake Rubble”

“The earthquake and tsunami that walloped Japan left much of its coastline ravaged, but left one thing intact: the Japanese reputation for honesty.

“In the five months since the disaster struck, people have turned in thousands of wallets found in the debris, containing $48 million in cash.

“More than 5,700 safes that washed ashore along Japan’s tsunami-ravaged coast have also been hauled to police centers by volunteers and search and rescue crews. Inside those safes officials found $30 million in cash. One safe alone, contained the equivalent of $1 million.

“The National Police Agency says nearly all the valuables found in the three hardest hit prefectures, have been returned to their owners….”

gotta love the japanese! they are pretty awesome. (^_^)

despite all the honesty flowing around everywhere in japan, they don’t seem to trust banks very much (not that i blame them!):

“The stashing of cash in safes isn’t a unique problem in Japan, where many people prefer to keep their money at home….”

huh.

previously: on the non-violent japanese of today and they might be waaaaycists…

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6 Comments

  1. Homogeneous high IQ isolated societies FTW.

    I once visited Tokyo, Japan alone on a whim. I had little money and just slept in parks and temples (and showered with a bunch of old aunties at the sauna!). I never once feared for my life or wallet. It was a really exciting and rewarding experience and I met many wonderful people. I really like Japanese people and wish them a long and glorious future (been watching too much Worf on Star Trek! -__^ )

    Reply

  2. @flavia – yeah. i would have no qualms whatsoever about travelling to japan on my own. not that i’m planning to, but i would love to go to japan! sounds like you had a neat trip. (^_^)

    re.: too much worf & star trek — you and my father! (~_^)

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  3. You’ve stumbled across an established part of Japanese culture: kids are trained from a young age in what to do if you find something that isn’t yours (take it to the police and file a report) with some parents treating the first time a kid does this as a life ritual.

    There are established procedures for this in Tokyo that go back centuries (literally), as opposed to New York City, where turning in lost property to the cops is likely to get you detained on suspicion of theft.

    Here’s an interesting study on the topic, comparing responses to a “lost wallet” in Tokyo and NYC: http://www.jstor.org/pss/1555133

    Here’s Norimitsu Onishi’s column from 2004 on the topic: http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/08/world/never-lost-but-found-daily-japanese-honesty.html

    Reply

  4. @partysittingdown – “You’ve stumbled across an established part of Japanese culture….”

    yes, but then my question, as always, is: where does culture come from? (~_^)

    Reply

  5. Imagine you live in an island that is full of natural disasters, typhoon, earthquake, volcano, and tsunami etc. Plus you don’t have much fertile land to grow crops, It gets darn hot in the summer and extremely cold in the winter. Of course the only way to survive is to be smart and collective. Their culture is very unique, mostly developed from their living environment I’d say.

    However, Japan got its own issues… They have the lowest population growth of all developed countries (sadly Hong Kong is even lower than that, but since it’s not a country it doesn’t count). Everything is a trade-off. When the society is too cohesive and collective individuals, esp the young generation reacts negatively, esp nowadays. Needless to say, Japan is approaching to a loop of stagnation, I wouldn’t expect anything further than that for Japan.

    “gotta love the japanese! they are pretty awesome. (^_^)”

    Germans are the same to a lesser extent. Though Germany is not as safe as Japan (mostly because of immigrants and punks), normal German people are similarly programmed to be as honest as the Japanese. One time I forgot to lock my bike near the train station of Bonn for a week and it was still there. Gotta give credit to that.

    Reply

  6. @the slitty eye – “Imagine you live in an island that is full of natural disasters, typhoon, earthquake, volcano, and tsunami etc. Plus you don’t have much fertile land to grow crops, It gets darn hot in the summer and extremely cold in the winter.”

    good points!

    @the slitty eye – “Germans are the same to a lesser extent. Though Germany is not as safe as Japan (mostly because of immigrants and punks), normal German people are similarly programmed to be as honest as the Japanese.”

    yes. it’s an interesting parallel evolution.

    Reply

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