You are on page 1of 29


Comparative Study
Ching, Catherine Anna Espiritu, Maria Nikka Guiao, Joe Ong, Carl Toquero, Marl Yjuv


INTRODUCTION The US and Japan are two of the worlds top countries today, politically,

and economically. This paper briefly discusses the history of these two, and shows how their past relationships have affected their present ones. It also discusses the constitutional designs of both countries and present how these affect the economic and political standing and stability of the two. The economic aspects were extensively discussed since it is essential for everyone to have an idea of how these countries are dealing with their economy and its changes. Lastly it tackles ideologies and institutions that shape the political behavior of people in both countries. Aside from presenting data, this paper aims to give an analysis of both of the countries history, economy and politics. It also tries to show the

similarities and differences between these two great powers and present the status of their present relationship with each other. In the process, it also hopes to establish a connection between their past relationship with each other and how this has affected their current economic policies and political agendas.


BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF U.S. AND JAPAN U.S. and Japan are countries that are both powerful today,

economically and technologically. Both have been leading in the list of the richest nations in the world, the US on top followed by Japan. Both have

striking cultural and structural differences, but were able to stand out among other nations in the world. The US has been a leading power ever since the World Wars, and though colonized by the UK in its earlier years, it was able to rise as the richest nation in the world. It is considered to be the 3rd largest country in the world (in size) with 9,161,966 sq km of land and 664,709 sq km of water. As of July 2010, its population is 310,232,863, and this is again the 3rd largest population size in the world. It is currently made up of 50 states and its government type is federal democratic. Ever since the world wars, the U.S. also had maintained several bases all over the world. It also holds a permanent seat in the UN, and is the highest funder of this organization. But recent reports have showed that the US has not been fulfilling its duties in the UN. In 2001, the US suffered from terrorist attacks from the Al Qaeda, and this event sparked its desire to fight terror, hence the war on terror. It declared war on Afghanistan in 2001 for the 9/11 attacks. And in 2003, with the help of the UK it launched a war against Iraq for alleged possession of weapons of mass destruction. Many have criticized the US for these wars, but until today nothing has changed. Thousands of soldiers and civilians have and are suffering the consequences of these wars. In mid-2008, the US started to enter recession. Bank investments failed, several top companies closed down and a lot of people lost their jobs. In 2009, with the leadership of President Barack Obama the government

intervened and pass laws that would aid the failing economy.

With the

current pace of the American economy today, it has been forecasted that by 2050 it will be overtaken by China as the largest economy in the world. Japan, on other hand was a leading power in the early 1940s but was eventually completely destroyed by the U.S. in 1945. With the damages that it had taken from WWII, it is really surprising how it was able to recover. With only 364,485 sq km of land and 13,430 sq km of water, it was able to become the second largest economy in the world today. Japan has a population of 126,804,433 as of July 2010, and it ranks 10 th among the biggest populations in the world. Its government type is parliamentary with the presence of a constitutional monarchy. Japan started to become an influential member of the UN in 1956 and by 1990s, it was already contributing 11% of the UN funds. Since then it has actively participated in the peacekeeping missions that have been launched by the UN. Japans economy is heavily dependent on its imports of raw materials in the industrial sector and its fishing fleets. Surprisingly, Japan also hit

recession in 2008. And in 2009 its exports severely decreased by 49.4% hurting its economy even more. This was reported to be the worst recession in Japan since WWII. Its reliance on international trade, especially on its trade relations with the US, made its car shipments plummet by 71% because of the decreasing demands for new cars. This recession brought about political instability in the country.

Besides economic issues, Japan also faces political instability. Early in June 2010, Japan changed its prime minister again for the fifth time in four years. Last July 11, the once dominant Democratic Party of Japan lost which weakened Prime Minister Kan Naotos influence in the government. The

failure to establish single-party dominance in Japan during the elections intensified the political instability in the country. With the decreasing popularity of the current prime minister it very likely that he again will be replaced in September during elections. (Kapila,2010)


HISTORICAL BACKGROUND U.S. Colonized by the UK Revolutionary war in 1783 Spanish-American war WWI war against Germany WWII war against Japan Korean War in 1950s Vietnam War American Independence in 1776 Japan Never colonized WWII

MILESTONES Colonization Wars Fought



After independence in 1776

End of Tokugawa rule Meiji restoration in 1800s After American Occupation in 1952 After Meiji Restoration in 1870s Modelled after European style of governance

Road to Modernization

Victories Recession Recovery

Freedom for slaves in 1800s Establishment of American states in early 1800s Creation of Civil service Universal suffrage in 1900s Emerged as a hegemon during and after WWI and after WWII Great Depression in 1930s During WWII after providing arms and weapons to countries at war

Taisho Era or the Period of Popular Awakening State Militarization Women Suffrage after WWII

Creation of the Southeast Asian Coprosperity sphere During Tokugawa rule under closed policy After defeat in WWII Provision of arms to NATO forces which helped in re-establishing the Japanese economy

Japan fell hard twice. The first time was when the Tokugawas led the government, and the second time after WWII. In both of these cases, they were able to recover and even catch up with the West. Traditional political culture in Japan was heavily shaped by Confucian and Buddhist beliefs which called for passivity and respect for authority. The Japanese society was composed a strict hierarchy, and before the Taisho era, only the elites took part in governance. But with the insertion of democratic values in the society, the Japanese became highly participant in government. The West had a huge influence on Japan. From their government structure, down to their military strategies, everything was patterned after the West. Japan wanted to be as good as the West or even better. Japan doesnt have a colonial past but surprisingly, traditions, beliefs and practices from other countries seemed to have shaped its political culture. Both Confucianism and

Buddhism came from China. Their parliamentary style of government was patterned after the European style of governance. It seems as if Japanese political culture is a mixture of practices from various countries. After the American occupation in 1952, Japan started rebuilding its economy with a little help from the U.S. and Europe. Its success in rebuilding its industrial sector made its GDP increase drastically and eventually made it as the second largest economy in the world, overtaking European and fellow Asian countries. U.S. was able to maintain its status after becoming the worlds greatest power. It played the most significant roles in both world wars, and is considered as a hegemonic power. It immediately built its government after its independence in 1776, and united its country by the admission of the different states. Perhaps the U.S. was more liberal in terms of giving freedom and rights to the lower classes and the women. They were obviously ahead of Japan in terms of socio-political structures. But just like Japan, the U.S. also experienced two severe downfalls during its earlier years of development. The first one was the Civil was in 1860-1862 when conflicts started to arise between the government and 11 other states. The southern states brought up certain issues that the government seemed to have overlooked such as slavery, rights and trade. Southern states wanted to protect their rights in keeping the slaves. By the end of the war, the southern states were devastated. The government, under the elected president Abraham Lincoln (who were for the northern states) abolished

slavery. Their second fall was during the 1930s and this was popularly known as the Great depression which led to the crash of the American economy. This also affected other European countries and the American

colonies that had special trade relations with the U.S. The American economy started to recover during the start of WWII when fighting countries relied on the U.S. for weapon supplies. The industrial sector was finally revived and became focused on making weapons and ammunitions. Workers and soldiers were hired. The American economy once again boomed and it entered the war in 1942 which led to the defeat of Japan. The U.S. remains as the worlds largest economy until today. The timeline above gives a brief overview of events that happened in these two countries during the given periods. In almost the same periods American and Japanese governments were not stable. While the Americans were under the English, Japans government was controlled by a single inefficient shogun family which eventually led to the backwardness of Japanese technology. As the Americans were freed from its colonizers, Japan was still being controlled by the Tokugawa government. In the 1800s U.S. had begun establishing its government. It was already becoming one of the strongest nations in the world. Its influence eventually led to the Meiji restoration of 1868 which removed the Tokugawas from power. While the Americans were already fighting its wars, Japans military strength was beginning to take form. Its constitution was heavily patterned after the

Western style of governance. And even its military strategies are influenced

by the West. In the 1930s, as Japan was becoming a great power, the U.S. was suffering from the Great Depression. And this can be seen as perfect timing for Japan to impose its expansionist policies in neighbouring countries. Perhaps this is why the U.S. could not immediately respond the growing Japanese threat, because during that time its economy was severely suffering. And by the time the U.S. has recovered, Japan had already built its empire. By 1940 Japan has become a great power which has conquered territories all over Asia. Believing that they are already as advanced (militarily speaking) as the West, they attacked Pearl Harbour in 1941. Due to this provocation, the U.S. entered the war in mid-1942, and Japan finally surrendered in 1945 after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The American forces stayed in Japan until 1952 in order to control the Japanese movement, and even restructured the Japanese constitution. After which, the U.S. helped Japan to get back on its feet. Japan succeeded in recovering its economy. Both U.S. and Japan are considered to be the largest economies today.


CONSTITUTION Japans Constitution primarily serves for a parliamentary system of the

nations government and guarantees certain fundamental rights. One of the main changes that we see in their constitution is, Japan's emperor becomes the symbol of the State and of the unity of the people and is only exercising a purely ceremonial role without the ownership of sovereignty. The United

States of Americas Constitution is the supreme law of the nation itself for it is the framework for the organization of the government. The constitution clearly defines the relationship of the federal government to the states, to citizens, and to all people within the United States. In here, we see a major difference. Japans constitution, as the group agrees to Wards The History of the Japanese Constitution is greatly affected by the USA. The group learned and fathomed that the making of the constitution was a part of the US occupation policies. One of the most controversial articles that caught the groups interest was the ARTICLE 9. The full text of the article in Japanese:

The official English translation of the article reads:

ARTICLE 9. Aspiring sincerely to an international peace based on justice and order, the Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes. (2) To accomplish the aim of the preceding paragraph, land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will

never be maintained. The right of belligerency of the state will not be recognized. The researchers think that this article is not a provision of Japans security for this was the response to the 1945 Asian threat, Japans militarism. Also, we see article 9 as a provision for the security of the people of East Asia, the victims of The Japanese militarism. While the US has greatly affected Japans constitution, the representative of the Allied powers, the Far Eastern Commission in Washington DC had ultimate authority on the matter of Japans constitutional reform. If we perceive Article 9 as a provision for the security of the people of East Asia, a social contract in East Asia or in reality a treaty, then Japan would have to listen to what the East Asians have to say when making changes to Article 9. While judgements and decisions on Japans constitution ultimately will be made by the sovereign Japanese people, the East Asians will be, in the future, be greatly affected by Japans military force. Having been the victors in World War II, Americans are more concerned with the problems of the present than with the lessons of the past. Japan has become one of the most powerful economies in the world. As Japan's economy continues to grow and its manufactured exports compete with and sometimes take markets away from American industries, many Americans have begun to feel that Japan should accept more of the burden of maintaining stability in the world. Together with the growth of Japanese power and increasing problems of trade have come American

demands that Japan begin to accept responsibility for the defense of its own islands and the waters surrounding them. form of liberal democracy V. ECONOMY Japan and United States are the two largest economic powers in the world. The latter being the first and the former second. This economic clout makes the United States and Japan powerful forces by which they affect each other economic conditions of other countries. That is economic conditions of these two countries have a significant impact to the rest of the world. The two countries have same economic system that might account to their high level of their economic development. U.S and Japan both adopted the idea of capitalism in managing their economy. And as we traced their history we can see that both countries are better described having a mixed economy and the events that push them to adopt such kind of economic system. Japan adopted a mixed economy system in post WWII. Its past

economic system is a state-dominated economic strategy but at the mid 1880s the Japanese realized that their economy and military were no match for the West and they had to begin a painful restructuring process, one of it is adopting market capitalism with a state controlled economy. On the other hand, the modern American economy traces its roots to the quest of European settlers for economic gain in the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries. The New World then progressed from a marginally successful colonial economy to a small, independent farming economy and, eventually, to a

highly complex industrial economy. And while government involvement in the economy has been a consistent theme, the extent of that involvement generally has increased. We can see that U.S had adopted this kind of economic system from the start that causes its development and in the case of Japan, it is only during the 1880s that they realized that a pure stateguided economy is not beneficial to them.

US AND JAPAN ECONOMIC DATA UNEMPL. % INFLATION Yea r 198 0 198 1 198 2 198 3 198 4 198 5 198 6 198 7 198 USA 7 7.5 9.5 9.6 7.5 7.19 6.99 6.19 5.49 % Japan USA 2 2.2 2.4 2.6 2.7 2.6 2.8 2.8 2.5 13.5 1 10.3 2 6.16 3.21 4.32 3.56 1.86 3.74 4.01

PER CAP. GDP Japan 9,184 10,055 9,280 10,072 10,683 11,303 16,656 20,157 24,290

INVESTMENT IN US 4,723 7,697 9,677 11,336 16,044 19,313 26,824 34,421 51,126 IN Jap 6,225 6,762 6,930 8,063 8,374 9,467 11,839 16,141 18,546

Japan USA 7.78 4.91 2.74 1.88 2.27 2.02 0.62 0.13 0.67 12,080 13,412 13,812 14,853 16,348 17,363 18,178 19,115 20,381

8 198 9 199 0 199 1 199 2 199 3 199 4 199 5 199 6 199 7 199 8 199 9 200 0 200 1 200 2 200 3 200 4 200 5 200

5.27 5.62 6.82 7.51 6.9 6.08 5.61 5.42 4.95 4.51 4.22 4 4.7 5.78 5.99 5.53 5.08 4.62

2.3 2.1 2.1 2.2 2.5 2.89 3.15 3.35 3.4 4.11 4.68 4.72 5.03 5.38 5.26 4.72 4.43 4.14

4.83 5.4 4.23 3.03 2.95 2.61 2.81 2.93 2.34 1.55 2.19 3.38 2.83 1.59 2.27 2.68 3.39 3.23

2.28 3.06 3.24 1.73 1.28 0.71 -0.13 0.14 1.73 0.66 -0.34 -0.67 -0.73 -0.92 -0.25 -0.01 -0.27

21,683 22,709 23,219 24,282 25,233 26,516 27,439 28,684 30,150 31,423 32,952 34,548 35,288 36,124 37,457 39,648 41,768 0.24

24,123 24,606 28,039 30,503 34,906 38,316 42,105 37,264 34,133 31,103 35,149 36,602 32,113 30,620 33,125 35,841 35,623 43,993

67,319 83,091 95,142 97,769 100,721 98,513 104,997 116,144 125,041 134,340 153,815 159,690 149,859 147,372 157,716 175,728 190,279 35,565

19,911 22,599 25,403 26,591 31,095 34,117 37,309 34,578 33,854 41,423 55,120 57,091 55,651 66,468 57,794 68,071 75,491


6 Source: IMF International Financial Statistics. The table above shows (GDP) that even though Japanese economy is growing and is very competitive, it is still much smaller than that of the Unites States. On the other hand, it also shows that the United States imports from Japan much more than Japan imports from the U.S, but at the same time billions of dollars go to Japan for those goods. This leads us to believe that U.S has strong impact on the Japanese growth rate. For the United States, the importance of the economic relationship with Japan has been grounded in: its reliance on Japan as a critical ally; the emergence of Japan in the post-World War II period as an economic power in East Asia and the second largest economy in the world; the advancing competition from Japanese manufacturers in industries, for example autos and steel, which employ large numbers of U.S. workers; the rising trade deficits with Japan; Japans emergence as a major source of investment in the United States; and Japanese government policies that have protected vulnerable sectors and assisted exporters often at the expense of U.S. competitors. Even though Japan and the United States are similar in terms of their economic system adopted, they still differ on the outcomes of their economic policies. United States will not be in a recession for decade, like Japan was, because United States policy makers respond more quickly and aggressively than Japan. U.S government is more flexible compared to Japan that is why even though they have a similar economic system their outcomes still differ

to one another.

U.S acts during economic crisis especially after many years

following the Great Depression of the 1930s by adjusting spending and tax rates (fiscal policy) or managing the money supply and controlling the use of credit (monetary policy). And on 1970, major price increases, particularly for energy, created a strong fear of inflation -- increases in the overall level of prices. As a result, government leaders came to concentrate more on controlling inflation than on combating recession by limiting spending, resisting tax cuts, and reining in growth in the money supply. On the other hand, Japan, should reform some aspects of its economic structure, such as the Japanese government needs to encourage a competitive society and to eliminate regulations and over protectionism. Also employment must be reformed, and things like deregulation and

improvements in the accounting methods should take place. This is the reason why Japan had experienced long economic crisis, especially on the early 1990s, compared to U.S. This is also the reason why the U.S is still ahead compared to Japan.



Japanese Election Japan is a parliamentary country which means people only vote for their representative but not for the head of state. There are basically three types of election in Japan. First is the general election to the house of

representative which happens every four years unless the lower house is dissolve earlier. Second is the election to the House of Councilors held every three years to choose one-half of its members. Last is the local elections held every four years for offices in prefectures, cities, and villages. The minimum voting age is twenty years old. Also voter must satisfy a three month residency before being able to cast a ballot. For those seeking office there are two sets of age requirement. First requirement is a twentyfive year of age for admission to the House of Representatives and most local offices. And thirty years of age for the house of councillors and prefectural governorship. The house of representative has 480 members, elected for a four year term, 300 members in single-seat constituencies and 11 block 180 members Single-seat

by proportional

representation in


constituencies is a winner take all type of election while a proportional representation is a class of voting system aimed at securing a close match between the percentage of votes that groups of candidates obtain in elections, and the percentage of seats they receive. The House of Councillors (Sangi-in) has 242 members, elected for a six year term, 146 members in multi-seat constituencies (prefectures) and 96 by proportional representation on the national level. Half of the House of Councillors comes up for election every three years. A proportional representation is basically implemented in order to have a proper representation for the marginalize sectors on which Japan has many.

For years Japan had been dominated by a single party until 1993 with the Liberal Democratic Party losing office. 2009 elections handed the first non-LDP victory to the Democratic Party of Japan.

United States Elections The United states has a federal type of government with elected officials at the national, state and local levels. All members of the federal legislature, the Congress, are directly elected. There are many elected offices at the state level, each state having at least an

elective governor and legislature. There are also elected offices at the local level, in counties and cities. It is estimated that across the whole country, over one million offices are filled in every electoral cycle. The head of state, The President, is elected indirectly by the people. An electoral college is used to elect the president. An electoral college is state-by-state basis, as determined by the laws of each state. Generally, (with Maine and Nebraska being the exceptions) each state appoints its electors on a winner-takeall basis, based on the statewide popular vote on Election Day. Although ballots list the names of the presidential candidates, voters within the 50 states and Washington, D.C. actually choose electors for their state when they vote for President and Vice President. These presidential electors in turn cast electoral votes for those two offices. Even though the aggregate national popular vote is calculated by state officials and media organizations, the national popular vote is not the basis for electing a President or Vice

President. Elections for representatives are held in every even-numbered year, on Election Day early in November. Representatives are elected from single-member districts by plurality voting. Each representative must be at least twenty-five years old, have been a citizen of the United States for the past seven years; and be (at the time of the election) an inhabitant of the state they represent. The funding of electoral campaigns has always been a controversial issue in American politics. Money contributed to campaigns can be classified into "hard money" and "soft money". Hard money is money contributed directed to a campaign, by an individual or organization. Soft money is money from an individual or organization not contributed to a campaign, but spent in candidate specific advertising or other efforts that benefits that candidate by groups supporting the candidate, but legally not coordinated by the official campaign.

Political Institutions The 1947 Japanese constitution was imposed by the United States and its Occupation Authority after its victory in WWII. The constitution seeks to construct a system of representative democracy, with the emperor remains the head of state, but merely as a ceremonial figure. The constitution guarantees the fundamental rights of citizens and also pledges that land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained, but this provision has not prevented the government from building self19

defense forces, which was actually allowed to expand during the Cold-War U.S. and Soviet confrontation. The Legislature Japan is a parliamentary system in contrast to the US presidential system. The Japanese parliament is the Diet, which consists of two Houses the House of Representative and the House of Councillors. The primary power in the Diet rests with the lower house. Although the Diet is bicameral (a bill becomes law only when it is passed by both chambers), the lower house has the power to override, by a two-thirds vote for a second time, any attempt by the upper house to negate actions of the lower house. Moreover, the lower house chooses the prime minister and has virtual control of the budgeting process. In general, when the upper house makes a decision different from the lower house and when no agreement can be reached or when the upper house fails to take final action within a certain time, the decision of the lower house becomes that of the Diet. These are all general features of parliamentary forms of government similar to those found in all parliamentary systems.

Executive, Parliamentary, and Judicial US political system is based upon separation of powers which have checks and balances on each other, whereas Japans political system, which is similar to the British tradition, is based on the fusion of powers, stressing more cohesion between the executive and legislative functions. The tradition

of consensus seeking is deeply rooted in Japans political culture which is collectivistically based. The head of executive power (the Prime Minister) is indirectly elected by the parliament and he is the leader of the majority party in the parliament who names a cabinet that runs the various state ministries and carries out the policy of the majority party. The cabinet is recruited from the Diet and is largely made up of senior members of the majority party or members of coalition parties in the absence of a one-party majority. Both the prime minister and the cabinet members are responsible to the Diet, and all ministers must resign en masse if the House passes a no-confidence resolution or rejects a confidence motion. All Supreme Court justices, except the Chief Justice who is designated by the cabinet and nominally appointed by the Emperor (a symbolic figurehead), are appointed by the cabinet without the disguise of a bow to the Emperor. The Supreme Court, however, like the U.S. counterpart, enjoys the power of judicial review and can declare the legislation unconstitutional.

Power structure Japan is traditionally a centralized bureaucratic state modeled on the Chinese Confucian tradition and such a structure remains in todays Japan. US is federal system, the state power protected by the constitution, and the states are more autonomous, whereas Japan is unitary system, local


(47 prefectures or counties) and their policies are largely

controlled by the central government and can be modified by the central government on the nationwide base. For example, local police and school issues are overseen by centralized administrative boards. Borrowing by local governments must be approved by the Ministry of Home Affairs, which is the national agency that oversees local governments. Electoral system After 1994, the House of Representative has 500 members. 200 are elected by the proportional representation system and 300 are elected from single-seat constituencies or single-member-district plurality system. The House of Councillors has 252 members who serve six-year terms, but half of the total number is elected every three years. That is to say, the Japanese electoral system is similar to that of Germany, which is a combination of plurality and proportional representative systems. In both houses, voters have two votes in elections, one for a party and the other for an individual. Party system The Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) used to dominate Japanese politics from 1955 to 1993, although many other parties did exist, such as New Frontier Party, Democratic Party of Japan, Japan Communist Party, Social Democratic Party, and other smaller parties. However, Japans one-party domination was shattered by the 1993 election, which produced no clear majority and therefore generated a coalition government of eight centrist, center-left, and leftist parties, even though voters gave the LDP the largest

number of seats in the Diet (from 211 seats before 1996 to 240 seats in 1997). The once highly stable party system became a more fragmented and unpredictable multi-party system, but a broader representation is achieved.


IDEOLOGIES AND POLITICAL BEHAVIOR Japan and the United States have their similarities and differences

when it comes to Ideologies and Politics. As each country has their own voting behavior, there are those who have similar ideologies. Japan and the United States share something with ideologies, it is that they do not follow any ideologies. As Japan focuses more on what a candidate can do and not what that candidates platform would be. Similar to the United States, as their citizens used to follow the political ideologies of a certain party, at this day of age, these citizens do not follow the political ideologies, but what the candidate can do. To explain what has been said earlier about how people view what candidates can do; it is how a candidate can handle things; if that person has connections; if that person can get things done; and not what the person wants to do ideologically. I think that citizens believe in capabilities of change by politicians, because who they choose to vote is based on capabilities and not ideologies. As political parties in Japan adopt ideologies from other parties which are good for their country they all seem to have the same desire and goals, the only party different is the Japanese communist party according to Collinwood although they have different political parties there are only two dominant political parties in Japan such as the Democratic

Party of Japan and the Liberal Democratic Party. They are different from the United States as the United States only have two political parties, and Japan has several. But somehow similar due to the fact that there are only two top political parties, as mentioned, the Democratic Party of Japan and the Liberal Democratic Party. In the United States there are only two political parties; which are the Republicans and the Democrats. Since both countries do not really base their votes on what these parties go for, and they base it on what the candidate is capable of doing. The United States in the past follow what their parties push for, such as what either the Republicans would push for or what the Democrats would push for. But in these past elections, where President Bill Clinton was a democrat, and after his term, President George Bush won which was a Republican, then after President Barrack Obama won, who was a Democrat, which shows that the citizens do not base their votes on what these parties push for, but for the candidate, whether or not they feel they are capable of doing a good job. I think that people have realized on what parties do, which is to just copy each others good points, so in this they choose the most capable of doing the job. They are similar in this as Collinwood states that both these countries have experienced the end of ideology. Social Classes in Japan is great for majority of its people, as they have a large middle class; the United States may have a large middle class as well, what is different between their social classes are the upper class. As an upper class member of Japan, an owner of a very successful company would

not earn as much as what an upper class citizen would in the United States. Because of taxes, as they pay 37% of their income taxes according to Collinwood. These countries also differ with their Union. As the Union in the United States is a nation-wide organization, the Union in Japan is considered to be a Company Union, whereas their Union is restricted within the company and nation-wide strikes are not likely to happen unlike the United States where strikes happen nation-wide. Another big difference is the culture of the people. As the Japanese as stated by Collinwood have a vertical way of treating each other, in where people treat each other well in the work environment as employees and employers have their own responsibility to respect each other and give motivation. In the United States respect is a big factor in the work environment, especially human rights. People in the United States do not like their rights to be violated. And here their culture of treating each other right is based on law. People in the United States follow the law regarding this as citizens of Japan treat each other that way because of their culture. Although they are similar with how they treat each other well, they are different on why they treat each other that way. Problems both these countries encounter when it comes to society, is racism. This has been a big issue in the United States in the past, and people have always thought that it was only there in which this had happened. Although until today there are still some racism going on, but it isnt as bad as it was back then, it is still happening especially in areas such as Southern Texas. Groups such as the KKK exist and these are signs in which we see

racism happening even until today. A bad similarity these countries have is racism. As Japan struggles to have racism going on such as their struggle with minorities, in where an example given according to Collinwood the Burakumin, which were considered outcasts in feudal times are now considered to be those who have unofficial jobs and which house discrimination. Also minorities such as Koreans are facing discrimination, these people not all being able to be Japanese citizens as well. As Korea follows the Jus Sanguinis law, which is right of blood in which at least one parent should be ethnic Japanese. As they differ from the United States in where they follow the Jus Soli law, which is the right of birth. As long as you were born in the United States, you are considered to be a United States citizen. As both countries struggle with birth rate, the United States are able to cope with people working because citizens can apply for green card in the states, so much that they are facing recession where jobs have to be cut back. And Japan on the other hand needs these Korean or foreign migrates because of their birthrate problem and yet they do not allow everyone these people for naturalization, as they only accept a few applicants a year. Although there are those who are not affected by the minorities and just accept them; similar to the United States where there is acceptance of other nationalities and culture, there are still those who discriminate others and this can be seen in both countries. Countries have to adapt to time and change, we cannot all be stuck in the past and not change our views to make the country better. Improvement can happen if adjustment can be done. As

acceptance of other cultures to help improve our own are needed in order to improve as well. Culture is not only affecting the actions, beliefs and tradition but the acceptance of a new culture can cultivate improvement on investment and economy in a country. Globalization is helping developing countries improve and developed countries improve further. Japan has to learn to accept other cultures and races, just as the United States has been accepting other races in their country, investments flourished in their country, and for Japan to continue to improve; it has to keep itself out of isolation.

VIII. CONCLUSION Both U.S. and Japan have their strengths and weaknesses. But it seems evident that both of these countries are able to adapt to its environment that is continually changing. Despite recessions or deficits in both countries, they still remain to be on top of the worlds largest economies. While the U.S. experienced colonial rule, Japan suffered from the rule of the Tokugawa which hampered its technological growth. Though the US was ahead in terms of freedom and modernization, Japan was able to quickly catch up to it and even overtake it during the years of the Great depression. Both early American and Japanese styles of government were patterned after the European structure of governance. The end of WWII marked the beginning of these twos trading and political relationships. In the years of the Great depression Japan wasnt affected at all because it didnt rely on the Western

world for its economic gains but after WWII, Japan focused on building its industrial sector but started heavily relying on the West for the development of its economic sector. References: Almond, al (1988). Comparative politics today: A worldview. Glenview, IL: Scott, Foresman and Company Company Almond,G. & Powell, B. (1966). Comparative politics: A developmental approach. Boston: Little, Brown. American Association of State and Highway Officials. (nd). The American economy smarter, faster, and leaner. Retrieved August 17, 2010 from tif3report/economy.html. Britannica Concise Encyclopedia. (nd). American civil war. Retrieved August 17, 2010 from Fallon, R.(April,2005). Legitimacy and the constitution. Harvard law review. Vol. 118, No. 6 pp. 17871853. Gusmorino, P. (1996) The main causes of the Great depression. Retrieved August 17, 2010 from Kapila, S. (June 7,2010). Japans political instability and its strategic impact. Retrieved August 17, 2010 from Mays, P. (2002). Animated atlas: U.S. history timeline. Retrieved August 17, 2010 from Mavrokordatos, P. et al (February,2008). Measurement of economic impact: Japan vs. United States. Retrieved August 17,2010 from


Quigley, H. (Oct.1959). Revising the Japanese Constitution. Foreign Affairs, Vol. 38, No. 1.pp. 140-145 Smiley, G. (2008). Great depression. Retrieved August 17, 2010 from Tatsumi, Yuki. (July 28,2010).Political instability in Japan and its implications on the US-Japan alliance. Retrieved August 17,2010 from The World Factbook. (Aug. 3,2010). Japan. Retrieved August 17, 2010 from The World Factbook. (Aug. 3,2010).United States. Retrieved August 17, 2010 from Walton,G. (Dec.8,2001). History of American economy. South- Western College Pub. Ward, R.( Dec.1956). The origins of the present Japanese constitution. The American Political Science Review, Vol. 50, No. 4 pp. 980-1010. Ward, R.(April,1956). The constitution and the current Japanese politics. Far Eastern Survey, Vol. 25, No. 4, pp. 49-58.