Will Japan Buy Harvard Too?
IWAS walking through the Yard the other day--admiring the greenness of the grass--when I noticed something. Clustered in front of the John Harvard statue and clicking away with their Nikkon cameras stood a group of Japanese tourists.
When will it end? I agonized as I walked to my dorm. Those Japanese. They're not tourists. They're probably devious, cunning spies lying in wait to infiltrate Harvard and finally buy it. Maybe they're already planning to remake the John Harvard statue into Godzilla.
What's next? Raw fish? Union food is bad enough, but Japanese food?
Later that day, I read in the Washington Post, "Japanese to Buy 75 Percent of 7-Eleven Chain." They've gotten to 7-Eleven, that most American of all American institutions! It's even worse that I had thought. The Japanese aren't just thrashing us economically, they're trying to buy our national treasures. Before we know it, they'll get to McDonald's.
The last straw--what made my blood boil, my hair stand on end, and what spurred me to take a firm, no-nonsense stand--was hearing the Japanese suggest that it is our fault that a trade deficit exists, our fault that the quality of American goods has fallen, and our fault that we're no longer the foremost economic power in the world.
So they think we've gotten lazy, greedy, selfish, overly materialistic and irresponsible? What of it? We Americans value hard work and initiative as much as they do; but excuse us if we're not slaves to work and dull collectivism.
LOOK at Donald Trump, the epitome of creativity, hard work, brains and "good ole American guts." He's so generous he's lent his name to so many places and things like the Trump Tower. Could the Japanese have engineered as great a publicity stunt as Marla Maples?
What do they mean lazy? We just know how to have a good time, that's all. We're not nerds like those Japanese students who study all the time. American students know how to party.
American workers? They're not warped like the Japanese who feel some sense of responsibility to their employers and employees and to quality work. American workers know the objective is to get the most money with the least amount of work. Now talk about ingenuity.
The Japanese actually suggest that we limit the number of credit cards in order to improve our economy. Ridiculous! Don't they know that credit cards are the foundation of our society? The souvenirs of eight years of President Reagan's leadership?
Don't knock overspending, irresponsibility or deficits. The Japanese obviously don't understand true capitalism and American culture.
They're invading us, dollar by dollar, yen by yen, Nintendo by Nintendo. Welcome to World War III. America just won't be America anymore. We'll be owned lock, stock and barrel by Japan. Talk about internationalizing the U.S.
You say I'm getting irrational? You argue that foreign-owned firms employ just 4 percent of the American labor force, and that Britain and Holland both have greater holdings in this country than Japan? I'm telling you, the Japanese are buying us out. They're getting back at us for World War II.
So what if the U.S. is still the leading exporter in the world? The Japanese have masterminded a plot to sabotage us economically. They're out to destroy us!
They're what's wrong with the world today. Japanese products are corrupting American society. They're responsible for the unemployment, homelessness, drug addiction, illiteracy and dissolution of traditional family values. It's all Japan's fault.
WHAT do you mean I'm hysterical? I have the American public on my side. A Newsweek poll showed that "Americans now view Tokyo's economic power as a greater threat to the United States than the Soviet military." It's a Japanese invasion, a Japanese version of the Cold War. We need a new containment policy.
Change? Why should the United States change its economic policies or improve its production quality? The most powerful nation on earth does not have to change. We're doing things the right, honest, old-fashioned credit-card-spend - your - money - don't-worry-be-happy way. It's not our fault that we're beginning to lose the race.
It's the Japanese who need to change. They need to stop using new technology. They should learn to use credit cards. They need to chill out.
But in the meantime, we need to keep our eyes open. They are everywhere. Out to get us. They look weird, strange, you know--FOREIGN. Don't get them mixed up with the West Germans or South Koreans. The Japanese are the real culprits.
So watch out for camera-clicking tourists in the Yard. Otherwise, we'll be eating sushi soon.