Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Stars in the sky of Tokyo
The other day I happen to look up into the sky. I saw stars. Not the kind on tv, but actual stars that shine in the sky. Seeing the twinkles above me actually bewildered me because as long as I could remember you could hardly see anything but the moon when you looked up in Tokyo. It's probably been about three months since the economy in Japan has been really tanking but that was my first thought. Could the industrial output be so low that pollution is actually down? When I say pollution I don't mean light pollution either. Or could it be that the high gas prices drove drivers away from the road and onto trains or bicycles? In any case, it is a welcome sight to see the sky full of stars.
Seeing the stars also made me think about a book I read a while ago, J-Curve by Ian Bremmer. I was intrigued by the author's analysis and use of his J curve, but did not find the overall book to be very intriguing. Although the curve applies to terrorist states and states that failed, I constantly applied his logic and reasoning to the US while I read the book, then it became fascinating. Anyway, the author mocks N. Korea in one of his chapters and points out a satellite picture of N. Korea at night and how it takes up an empty space in between S. Korea and China/Russia, whose cities lighten up the map.
It was an interesting point that N. Korea lags behind in infrastructure and consumption/use of electricity. I am by no means a supporter of N. Korea, I guess I have to point out now that I am Korean-American, but you can look at this satellite picture in another...should I say light? Because it has such poor infrastructure and doesn't use that much electricity, it is probably one of the greenest countries in Asia... Is that a good point? I bet you could see the stars really nicely from there, not that I would like to see it from there.