Japan’s Red State/Blue State Divide

A fascinating parallel between the United States and Japan about which I’d previously been unaware . . . Just as in America, where our particular type of federalist system is designed to give vastly disproportionate power to sparsely populated rural states (e.g., the reason Wyoming gets more federal Homeland Security dollars per capita than New York . . .), the post-war Japanese Constitution (the one WE drafted) produces a virtually identical situation in which many rural farmers have at least twice as much actual voting power as residents of Tokyo. The result: Decades of inefficient government and policies that favor traditionalists over innovators.

As the below NYT article recounts, however, one intensely dedicated lawyer is waging his own samurai-worthy battle to shift that balance of power. Well worth reading.

Now if only he’d move to New York City!

[“Daredevil’s Latest Test: Remaking Japan’s Democracy,” The New York Times, 6/22/2013]

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