In yesterday’s Japan Times, journalist David McNeill provides an insightful review of a new book by political scientist Atsushi Ishii, “Kaitai Shinso: Hogei Ronso” (“Anatomy of the Whaling Debate”). What’s most interesting about this review, and thus about the book, is that Ishii criticizes everyone involved in the debate. By putting everyone on the chopping block, and then doing some slicing with a fine-tipped blade rather than a cleaver, it appears that Mr. Ishii spreads the blame equally yet leaves room for putting the pieces back together.
Let’s hope that the fact this book comes from a native of Japan proves extra useful in moving this dialogue along. When energy is expended assigning blame or guilt, “What’s good or bad for whales (gets) lost.”