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Ampontan has some nice juxtapositions, jumping off Victor Davis Hanson among others, highlighting the culture-and-mores-rooted FACT that Greece, Southern Italy, Detroit, and urban Britain are simply more difficult and troublesome places to live than Germany, Northern Italy, Switzerland, and of course, his ever-championed Japan. I am of course taking the Tocquevillian liberty of suggesting that what he and Hanson call “culture” can perhaps more precisely be labelled “mores.”

And do note—this is a something of a break from his usual blogging fare of demonstrating at great length why Japanese democratic politics is utterly dysfunctional and may eventually leave its finances looking metaphorically like our (all too real) Detroit.

Go to his main page for more on this score comparing Japanese and Haitian disaster clean-up efforts—there you see that it is an apparently “political” matter, the long-standing pattern of despotism, that causes Haiti’s trouble.

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