Saturday, September 05, 2009

“Japan's new government and its first tough call”

This Foreign Policy post* grew out of a memo that I wrote in anticipation of the DPJ victory. One part of the memo will be incorporated in a document that goes to Eurasia Group clients and another became the seeds of what you see there, on the call, which is basically a Eurasia Group blog. (The rest lies undead, in a hard disk here, hard disk there; such is the fate of the unwanted children of our feverish imaginings.)

You won’t see much of me there; I rarely offer my opinions unless asked. Besides, Ross Schaap knows and understands far more than I do the arcana of Japanese politics and—crucial to the Eurasia business—its interaction with the economy. Also, there’s the little matter that Japanese politics did not have much of an effect on the economy. To put it another way, Japan was not a significant source of political risk for investors and more broadly the markets. Until now. You can actually see the side effects of the lack of interest in the quality of the hastily cobbled together post-election coverage in the English-language media.

In any case, the call*, as the subtitle “political futures from Ian Bremmer and Eurasia Group*” suggests, the posts are about the likely, not the should be.

* Ian skipped so many grades he’s known as the Doogie Howser of political science. The side effect of that is that he never learned to use capital letters properly.

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