Like you, we are following the nuclear emergency situation in Japan intently. The human tragedy in the earthquake’s aftermath heart wrenching enough. Schadenfreude and mixed feelings in Shanghai may seem particularly cold but not ahistorical.
Who can the Japanese turn to? There have been 6 prime ministers in 5 years. As of this writing, Prime Minister Kan has been in office 272 days. Kan’s foreign minister just resigned because of scandal. And Kan is battling the ‘Sith Lord’ of Japanese politics, former DPJ master mind Ichiro Ozawa, whom the DPJ expelled for corruption. Ozawa in the days before the quake was openly working to topple the DPJ and return to politics himself. Kan has called the disaster the greatest threat since WW II but his options are constrained. Japan already has the largest public debt in the world.