Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Letters

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Letters

Article excerpt

Unemployment: Different in Japan

Regarding "Bankruptcies Jolt Japan Toward Freer Markets" (Nov. 26): It will be a happy day when the American news media stop comparing Japanese figures on unemployment with American figures. Ever since Peter Drucker wrote on this topic nearly a decade ago, there has been no question that the two governments do not refer to the same thing when they speak of unemployment.

In a recent study in the Japan Echo, Japanese researchers, using the same statistical methods as the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, came up with levels of unemployment in Japan of around 8 percent, not 3.5 percent as your article says. These figures must be even higher today. It would not be at all fantastic to predict levels of 15 percent to 20 percent in the very near future. Unemployment in Japan is not going to be higher than it is in the US, as your article states. It already is higher. D.M. Stroud Sedona, Ariz. Editor-in-chief Saru Press International Commitment to efficient rail travel The editorial "Amtrack: Two Scenarios" (Nov. 25) was interesting but failed to present the benefits of rail transportation. It is the cheapest, most environmentally friendly means of moving goods and people on land. Your editorial says, "Influential legislators, like Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee chairman John McCain (R) of Arizona, have made it clear this is the last Amtrak subsidy they'll tolerate." Senator McCain and those of like mind might do well to think 20 or 30 years down the line (no pun intended). Americans subsidize other forms of transportation to the tune of many billions of dollars per year, have cheap gasoline, and are increasingly buying larger, more polluting vehicles - but the mention of an additional 10-cent tax on gasoline to finance an efficient rail system causes outrage. Frederick W. Campbell St. Albans, Vt. Women in technology set an example It was a pleasure to see "In a Cyber Community, Children and Seniors Learn From Each Other" (Nov. …

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