*to Hanlon's razor: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

If you're caught leaving a ship you thought was sinking...

... don't be surprised to be called a rat.
I'm not the first to comment on the fact that a lot of westerner executives quickly bailed on Japan after the quake and the Fukushima nuclear incidents, and that the local staff resent it.  It's a hell of a lesson for the Japanese staff of a western firm to learn what Gen-X did two decades ago: the corporate attitude is "%$#@ you!"  Nor am I the first to point out that it might have something to do with the fact you cannot integrate here:
I think seeing Gaijin flee is an instinctive reaction to them NOT being accepted by the Japanese. They could have gone down to Fukushima and taken a piss on the reactor and they still wouldn't be accepted as a 'we Japanese'. So, if you feel you'll never be part of the group, I think a lot of people will think 'fuck you'! I'm out!  If this kind of disaster was to happen in Aus or even Canada I doubt you would have seen this type of reaction from 'Gaijin'.
Nor do I resent people who have left for no better reason than panic, so long as they did not leave responsibilities in the hands of Japanese who could not leave: which of course many did.


  1. That's an interesting point; I hadn't thought about it like that. Though I also don't blame people who left (nothing stupid about being careful), I do feel a vague sense of resentment, and I can't really explain why.

  2. I feel that resentment too, but I know I am not entitled to it. My family chose not to leave, because getting to Narita was too much trouble. We'd bought flights, but cancelled them. I am 'between jobs' as it were, so I did not have work responsibilities. I am not in a position to judge, but I can sure judge what locals will think.

  3. You should find this interesting. Written by a friend of a friend.


  4. "They could have gone down to Fukushima and taken a piss on the reactor and they still wouldn't be accepted as a 'we Japanese'."


    i'm currently not in japan but wonder how i would have reacted. would i be a fleeing flyjin or a grounded gaijin? it's a 50/50 call.