People forget that prior to World War II, Japan was a very poor country. In fact many Japanese migrated across the Pacific & sought work in The South American countries. Indeed one of the ex Presidents of Peru, Alberto Fujimori was of Japanese extraction. We, as human beings do tend to believe that the present state of things is set in stone. It isn’t. Take climate change. The climate is so unstable, especially at the moment that it is always going to change. There is nothing new in this. We are going through a period of great uncertainty. And most of these problems are caused by the human race.
Nations’ periods of power & influence come & go. Empires rise & fall. This is the nature of things. The present & immediate past events in Japan are so great & so monumental that not only Japan but also the rest of the World will suffer. When the accidents in the Japanese nuclear plants come to an end it might be possible to make some sort of assessment of how the country stands economically but it is unlikely to be on any list of wealthy countries, at least not for a couple of decades.
Change is all around us but we don’t always notice it. We eschew change & we deceive ourselves that it isn’t happening. Some changes are obvious but only once they do actually happen do we admit to them. We are in such a state of denial about change that we are reluctant to admit that it ever happens. Even just before World War II, people on the whole didn’t believe that the war was about to happen.
It will be a generation or 2 before Japan gets back to where it was.