Are some cultures just out of place?

THR

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I have just read an article about Japan. They have a population of something like 125m. Out of that population, 2% are foreigners, most of them being Chinese or Korean. Very few Europeans live permanently in Japan which is a very wealthy country by any measurable standards.

How does Japan compare to Europe? We here in Europe believe that we can somehow miraculously assimilate people from very alien cultures, people who are from countries whose culture not only contradicts with that of our own but even seeks conflict with that of our own.

Are the Japanese being wiser than we are here in Europe? Difficult to say but the crux of the matter is that whenever there is a need for people fleeing their countries of birth, the preference should be given to countries which would be as close as possible to the countreis the people are fleeing from.

The Japanese don't want Europeans to live in their country, not sure about how many Europeans would want to live in Japan either.

I know that you can't send Somalis to Saudi-Arabia because Somalis are equally despised in Saudi-Arabia as they are in any European country they move in but my point is that some sort of cultural selectiveness should apply.

Or is this too politically incorrect?
 


collina

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I have just read an article about Japan. They have a population of something like 125m. Out of that population, 2% are foreigners, most of them being Chinese or Korean. Very few Europeans live permanently in Japan which is a very wealthy country by any measurable standards.

How does Japan compare to Europe? We here in Europe believe that we can somehow miraculously assimilate people from very alien cultures, people who are from countries whose culture not only contradicts with that of our own but even seeks conflict with that of our own.

Are the Japanese being wiser than we are here in Europe? Difficult to say but the crux of the matter is that whenever there is a need for people fleeing their countries of birth, the preference should be given to countries which would be as close as possible to the countreis the people are fleeing from.

The Japanese don't want Europeans to live in their country, not sure about how many Europeans would want to live in Japan either.

I know that you can't send Somalis to Saudi-Arabia because Somalis are equally despised in Saudi-Arabia as they are in any European country they move in but my point is that some sort of cultural selectiveness should apply.

Or is this too politically incorrect?
What does Japaneese law say about emigration?
 

THR

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What does Japaneese law say about emigration?
Is there a point you're trying to make? No-one can move into a country which does not accept his/her entry to the country. I've never heard of any restrictions of free citizens to move anywhere they like as long as the receiving party accepts.
 

Old Thady

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This is an interesting point. I may be wrong but there aren't any western countries that (officially) assess would-be immigrants in terms of what one might call their "cultural distance'' from the potential host country. If a New Zealand engineer and an equally qualified Pakistani engineer apply for residence in Ireland, should we favour the Kiwi as he is more likely to assimilate quickly?

By far the largest immigrant group in England is the Irish and yet they are in many ways the least noticeable and least troublesome. The small cultural distance between the countries made assimilation easy. We will never know if this would have been the same had Irish people been visibly racially distinct.

If I were minister plenipotentiary for immigration, I would try secretly to make the numbers of people accepted inversely proportional to their degree of cultural compatibility. In many ways this would be unjust but the numbers could be adjusted over time as one saw how different groups fared. The great advantage is that it would avoid the risk of having significant communities in the country who do not like being here and who are, in turn, disliked by the mainstrean population.

Of course it is very hard to see how anything along the lines of this scheme could be implemented in reality.
 

Default Now

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I was in Stephen's Green playground today with the kid. Sat down on a bench beside a veiled Muslim woman. The first thing she done was turn her back deliberately on me in case there might be any interaction. (I'm a bloke BTW) It was so noticeable it was ridiculous. I know many Muslims in the medical profession and none have this extreme attitude but there are a sizeable amount who seem to bring their nut job values with them. They're not going to integrate full stop.
 

pete2

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I was in Stephen's Green playground today with the kid. Sat down on a bench beside a veiled Muslim woman. The first thing she done was turn her back deliberately on me in case there might be any interaction. (I'm a bloke BTW) It was so noticeable it was ridiculous. I know many Muslims in the medical profession and none have this extreme attitude but there are a sizeable amount who seem to bring their nut job values with them. They're not going to integrate full stop.
To feel ostracized in your own country, a sad story, but don't dwell on it. As you point out there are some good for all the bad.

Maybe Ireland will have more luck with the next crop? Brought to you from Bosnia & Albania by the EU.
BBC News - EU visa-free travel in sight for Albanians and Bosnians
 
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Having spent some time in Japan over the years plus know quite a number of people who have lived there for years on end I have to admit its one of the best places in the world to have visited.

Everything is clean, when you see guys who pick up litter in the station with face masks and white gloves and there really is no litter then gives an idea of what its like. Even the guys picking up the dustbins are dressed like this.

There are lots of Brazilians living in Japan who co exist quite happily plus there are huge numbers of Japanese who live in South America.

On the people who have lived there a number have Japanese partners and have never had any trouble living there. The expats lived in a western style complex simply because it was what their companies wished for.

Its culture is alien to westerners because it is so different but any culture where you see 4 year olds going off to school on their own and sitting on trains without ever it being an issue is to be welcomed. Asking a Japanese friend were school kids ever harassed or kidnapped she said it was so rare as to make it a national scandal.

The police don't operate to the same restraints as western police so in the area she lived in a mugger basically ahd his head kicked in from street arrest to police station.

There is a huge amount of conformity but then again when you have 35 Million people living in the Tokyo metropolitan area you need conformity with rules and standards to allow society to function.

When you have stations with 2-3 million people per day going through them you need things to work and work they do.

The Japanese do suffer from a need to have people's approval and people not liking them or their country is shame but I would happily revisit as really and truly its a beautiful place with incrediblely polite and helpful people.
 

This Country

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Interesting post. Hopefully it won't attract too many racist posts. Far too often people confuse racism with culture-ism.

Cultural distance has long been used in Business, I can't see it being used in politics though. People would immediately jump to the conclusion that it's some sort of racial discrimination like the White Australia Policy. What is needed is a culture discrimination, regardless of race, with priority given to those most likely to feel at home here.

As for the Japanese, they realise that their country is essentially a nation (like Finland), rather than a collection of nations (like the US). As a result, they don't feel the need to bring in lot of other nationalities and call them 'new Japanese'. There is a very serious downside to this - an ageing population and resulting pension crisis. Also, a mono-cultural society isn't quite as interesting a place to live in, because of the lack of diversity. Whether or not you agree with the Japanese direction, at least they have a direction. We seem to have a state based on nationalism, which has no real strategy of helping newcomers feel part of that nation.
 

Default Now

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which has no real strategy of helping newcomers feel part of that nation.
Why do we need a strategy? surely people coming here should accept that they're moving to a different country and respect its way of living. If I go to Saudi or UAE, its expected.
I visited Japan in 96. Great place, very safe and the thing that strikes you from the time you land is Japanese culture. Its everywhere! Never forget landing at Narita airport at midnight and getting on the bullet train to Ueno. A girl dressed in full traditional Geisha clothes made her way through the carriage without a blink from the drunk and sleeping business passengers.
 

Camper Van

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To feel ostracized in your own country, a sad story, but don't dwell on it. As you point out there are some good for all the bad.

Maybe Ireland will have more luck with the next crop? Brought to you from Bosnia & Albania by the EU.
BBC News - EU visa-free travel in sight for Albanians and Bosnians
With their peaceful nature, hard work ethnic and legendary respect for their host countries, this is exactly what Europe needs-more muslims.
 

physicist

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With their peaceful nature, hard work ethnic and legendary respect for their host countries, this is exactly what Europe needs-more muslims.
To be fair, compare to the respect shown by Europeans in Muslim countries.
 

pete2

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Interesting post. Hopefully it won't attract too many racist posts. Far too often people confuse racism with culture-ism.

Cultural distance has long been used in Business, I can't see it being used in politics though. People would immediately jump to the conclusion that it's some sort of racial discrimination like the White Australia Policy. What is needed is a culture discrimination, regardless of race, with priority given to those most likely to feel at home here.

As for the Japanese, they realise that their country is essentially a nation (like Finland), rather than a collection of nations (like the US). As a result, they don't feel the need to bring in lot of other nationalities and call them 'new Japanese'.
There is a very serious downside to this - an ageing population and resulting pension crisis.
I don't see how nationalism and a lack of racial/cultural "diversity" leads to aging population and pension crisis. Last I heard the 'solution to an aging population is immigration' thesis was fundamentally discredited.

Part of the problem, as I see it, is lack of reproduction, (Ireland doesn't have this problem of course), but the bigger picture is the premium invested in economic growth at all costs rather than sustainable growth. Perhaps people should be asked which they actually prefer; the continual import of exploitable labor and associated social churn as part of a population replacement strategy, or a society which replaces itself, enjoys a more modest standard of living and which enjoys less disruptive and ultimately less costly impacts on society?

Also, a mono-cultural society isn't quite as interesting a place to live in, because of the lack of diversity. Whether or not you agree with the Japanese direction, at least they have a direction. We seem to have a state based on nationalism, which has no real strategy of helping newcomers feel part of that nation.
Newcomers won't be part of the Irish nation, the nation is by blood. So if these people are to remain, and its not clear they must, they need to be accommodated in other ways. Would you suggest the US model where essentially patriotism is the state religion everyone must adhere too?
 

This Country

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Why do we need a strategy? surely people coming here should accept that they're moving to a different country and respect its way of living. If I go to Saudi or UAE, its expected.
I visited Japan in 96. Great place, very safe and the thing that strikes you from the time you land is Japanese culture. Its everywhere! Never forget landing at Narita airport at midnight and getting on the bullet train to Ueno. A girl dressed in full traditional Geisha clothes made her way through the carriage without a blink from the drunk and sleeping business passengers.
I've never been to the UAE or Saudi, but as far as I know, Western foreigners generally live apart from the local population. To generalise, they go there as expats to work in construction or oil industries for a few years and then come home. This isn't the same as emigrating to settle and bring up a family in the hope that that family will stay and become as arab as the next family. That's true integration and very few Westerners go native like that in the arabic world.

The reason a strategy is needed is to avoid ghettoisation, which has so often led to alienation and unrest. That's if the govt. pursues a strategy of attracting immigrants whose cultures are so distant from our own. Do we want immigrants to be guests of the country or part of the country?
 

This Country

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With their peaceful nature, hard work ethnic and legendary respect for their host countries, this is exactly what Europe needs-more muslims.
I've travelled a lot in the Balkan region and Albanians are extremely secular in their Islam, as are the Bosnians (although in their case this is slowly changing. Any Balkans I know in Dublin are actually quite well integrated (perhaps because there aren't that many of them).

I would be far more worried about the organised crime this will facilitate. Albania is famous for it.
 

gatsbygirl20

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Having spent some time in Japan over the years plus know quite a number of people who have lived there for years on end I have to admit its one of the best places in the world to have visited.

Everything is clean, when you see guys who pick up litter in the station with face masks and white gloves and there really is no litter then gives an idea of what its like. Even the guys picking up the dustbins are dressed like this.

There are lots of Brazilians living in Japan who co exist quite happily plus there are huge numbers of Japanese who live in South America.

On the people who have lived there a number have Japanese partners and have never had any trouble living there. The expats lived in a western style complex simply because it was what their companies wished for.

Its culture is alien to westerners because it is so different but any culture where you see 4 year olds going off to school on their own and sitting on trains without ever it being an issue is to be welcomed. Asking a Japanese friend were school kids ever harassed or kidnapped she said it was so rare as to make it a national scandal.

The police don't operate to the same restraints as western police so in the area she lived in a mugger basically ahd his head kicked in from street arrest to police station.

There is a huge amount of conformity but then again when you have 35 Million people living in the Tokyo metropolitan area you need conformity with rules and standards to allow society to function.

When you have stations with 2-3 million people per day going through them you need things to work and work they do.

The Japanese do suffer from a need to have people's approval and people not liking them or their country is shame but I would happily revisit as really and truly its a beautiful place with incrediblely polite and helpful people.
I taught in Japan briefly. Students bowed to me as they entered the classroom (Freaked me out!) Sat in respectful silent rows. The silence everywhere! Children very stressed doing after-school grinds. Teaching was so easy, I felt guilty getting paid. Once I prepared and corrected my lessons, that was it. No cheek, disruption, whining, truancy, forgotten books/ homework, violent behaviour, bullying, parents attacking you....

Old people were revered. As was the boss. The expression "salary man" was used....it was just such a totally different world....And the awful, indescribable heat, which sapped all energy...But yes, it is beautiful, as are its people
 

asknoquestions

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One funny thing about Japan is that there are, like, NO famous Japanese people. Aside from Sugero Miyamoto who invented Super Mario.

They were also incredibly aggressive and expansionist at the start of the Sino Japanese war. And they were brave but totally stupid to attack the USA. So they're not all Mr. Nice Guy San.

They make some great comics, though.
 


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