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The Credit Voice - Nankurunaisa

The Credit Voice – June 2020
The Japanese have a favorite expression, handed down for generations: Nankuru-naisa, roughly translated as "time is everything." They use this expression as a mantra, and believe that if you say it often enough it can improve your destiny. The linguistic roots of this hypnotic sounding phrase come from the dialect of the beautiful tropical island of Okinawa, home to the population with the highest average age in the world. The link between this long life expectancy, generation after generation, and a serene acceptance of human impotence in the face of the change reflected in the saying “time is everything” appears natural and immediate.

Perhaps this is the spirit that guided the Japanese authorities as they launched one “unprecedented” package of fiscal and monetary measures after another after the bursting of the speculative financial bubble in 1991. And perhaps now, faced with the pandemic of 2020, they realize these measures are of little use. The "lost decade" in the meantime is about to become three. In spite of everything, one has to give the impression of continuing to believe these measures work. Not seeing is a flower, says another old Japanese adage: it is easier to continue to nourish the dream of a better future, hoping that time will bring solutions, rather than facing reality and being responsible for its political consequences in the eyes of public opinion.