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Economist, Mar 30, 2019 (I)

发表于 4-6-2019 12:49:00 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
本帖最后由 choi 于 4-8-2019 14:08 编辑

There is no need to read the rest of following.

(1) Schumpeter | Ninja Activists; Japan toys with shareholder capitalism just as the West gets cold feet.
https://www.economist.com/busine ... t-as-the-west-balks


"AYA MURAKAMI 村上 絢 [1988- ] hardly looks like a corporate raider. Dressed in black, the slight 31-year-old is, if anything, more like a kunoichi, or female ninja. In her office above a 7-Eleven store in Tokyo, she is disarmingly frank. She tells how, as a youngster, her father Yoshiaki Murakami 村上 世彰 [1959- ; 16 years in what was then called Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) 通商産業省 (通産省)], a well-known bureaucrat turned activist investor, taught her the value of money by making her bet on the cost of dinner. * * * in 2007, he [father] was convicted of insider trading [懲役2年 and fined]. * * * She now runs c&i Holdings, a family fund that enables her to influence how Japanese executives—'99% men'—run their companies. Her approach is uncompromising. 'Whether I am female or young, I still hold the same number of shares and I can exercise them.' Last week the Murakamis launched a hostile bid for Kōsaidō [株式会社]廣済堂 [1949- ; 印刷l based in Tokyo], whose activities range from printing to funeral homes. They are in a race against Bain Capital, a $105bn buy-out firm.

"As Ms Murakani points out, the country considers money dirty; cash is handed over in envelopes and on traus, rarely from hand to hand. It is squeamish about profit. Business in Japan has long been an old boys' club defended by tes-men (or 'patient shareholders,' as they style themselves [yes-men = shareholders who do not rebel]. Up to half of listed firms' shares are in the hands of friendly shareholders -- mostly other copanies with cross shareholdings and banks insurance firms who tend to support managers. This stymies attempts to hold them to account [which is a verb]. As a result, firms hoard earnings, and do not put them to more productive use.

(a) Japanese dictionary:
* The noun aya is mostly represented by 綾 (Chinese pronunciation run; Japanese pronunciation: aya) with the same meaning as in Chinese. 絢 pronounced as "aya"  is used in name ONLY.
* For kunoichi, see くノ一 (where 一 is kanji "one" rather than a hyphen; くand ノ are two symbols in katakana)
("くノ一(くのいち)は、元来は女を指す隠語であるが、1960年代以降の創作物においては女忍者を指す言葉として広まっている。 * * * [section 1 江戸期における「くノ一」の語, section 1.1 語源] くノ一が女を指すのは、「女」という漢字を書き順で1画ずつに分解すると「く」「ノ」「一」となるためであると思われる"_ (citation omitted)

my rough translation: The kunoichi was an euphemism for a woman, but since 1960s has been applied to female ninja. The origin of the word is by partition the Chinese character 女 to its individual strokes
(i) 一般財団法人村上財団 [The Murakami Foundation] 村上絢

is written in Czech.
(ii) Her company C&I Holdings Co, Ltd  株式会社C&I Holdings. That is, no explanation for what the letters stands for in the Web.

(2) Argentina v Japan | Exceptions and Rules; How the two countries continue to confound macroeconomists.
https://www.economist.com/financ ... und-macroeconomists


"MANY PEOPLE make fun of macroeconomics. But any theory that must explain both Argentina and Japan deserves sympathy. Why, in particular, is inflation so stubbornly high in one and low in the other? In Argentina, consumer prices were 50% higher in February than a year earlier, the fastest increase since 1991. In Japan over the same period, inflation was less than 0.2%, equalling the lowest rate since 2016.  

"The inertia in both countries is puzzling. Inflation has stayed low in Japan despite a drum-tight labour market (unemployment has remained at 2.5% or below for over a year) and high in Argentina [there is no mystery here; like Venezuela, Argentine economy is shrinking fast and many shops are shuttered] despite a fast-shrinking economy: its GDP contracted by more than 6% year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2018.

"The two countries, of course, have long mystified economists. In 1950s Argentina's GDP per person was three times that of Japan, according to the Maddison Project data [which only gave PPP, rather than by foreign exchange rates]. The Eva Perón [1919 – 1952; First Lady 1946-1952] charitable foundation, run by the president's wife, shipped 100 tonnes of relief supplies to the war-battered Japanese. Thousands of Japanese migrated in the opposite direction, creating a population of 23,000 Nipo-Argentinos by the end of the 1960s.

"But the two countries' economic paths went on to cross decisively. Japan's GDP per person eclipsed Argentina's around 1970 and is now about twice as high, measured at purchasing-power parity. Its success and Argentina's failure defied predictions. Simon Kuznets, who won Nobel prize in economics in 1971 for his work on growth, put it best: there are four types of countries in the world --developed, undeveloped, Japan and Argentina.

"Policymakers in both countries have tried hard to make them macronomically 'normal.' * * *
here is no need to read the rest, because there is no answer. The Economist only repeats the question/puzzle.
(b) Nipo-Argentino? What language is that? It turns out to be Spanish, except that Spanish spells "nipo-argentino."
(i) Argentina speaks Spanish, not Portuguese.

In Spanish, the adjective and noun (person and language) masculine for Japanese is japonés (yes, j in lower case).

In Spanish, Japan is Japón.
(ii) However, as a prefix, Spanish has nipo-, whose English counterpart is "Nippo-."

(Again, n of "nipo-" in lower case)

Japanese tend to pronounce 日本 Nippon -- with Nihon less frequently.

(3) Mao Zedong | The Chairman Will See You NOw; The myth and thinking of Mao Zedong still influence his country and the world.
https://www.economist.com/books- ... uence-of-mao-zedong
(book review on Julia Lovell, Maoism; A global history. Bodley Head (in UK) and Knopf (in US), 2019)


(a) "THE NAMES of the 20th century's bloodiest dictators are synonymous with evil. Hitler, Pol Pot, Stalin: even to joke about them is in poor taste. Yet one tyrant's name has a milder impact. Indeed, many still revere him.

(b) "The origin of the [Mao] legend owe a surprising amount to an American. Me Lovell [variant of Lowell] explores the startling role played by Edgar Snow in creating the Mao myth more than a decade before Mao seized power in 1848. Snow was a journalist who managed to enter the remote north-western area where Mao and his followers ended up after their epic Long March to escape the forces of Chiang Kai-shek. The book he wrote about the guerrilla base and his meetings with Mao, 'Red Star over China.' published in 1937, became an international bestseller.  No other journalist had enjoyed such access. Snows description of Mao, then in his early 40s, as an idealist who wanted to save China from Chiang's corrupt autocracy and build a democratic country mesmerised the world. As Snow put it, Mao's aim was to awaken the Chiese 'to a belief in human rights' and to persuade them to 'fight for a life of justice, equality, freedom and human dignity.' What could be objectionable about that?  

"Snow's work, says Ms Lovell,'created Mao as a national and global political personality before there was such a thing in Chinese Communist Party as Maoism.' A Chinese translation attracted young, well-educated urban Chinese to Mao's cause. Abroad it became a handbook for anti-Nazi partisans in Russia, for Huk guerrillas in the Philippines and for anti-British revolutionaries in India.

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