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Answerman - What Happens To Japanese Students Who Don't Make It To The Top?


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maximilianjenus



Joined: 29 Apr 2013
Posts: 1794
PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 11:42 am Reply with quote
a fun thing at being at the top 1% is that the people there don't realize they are there because they are looking at their own top 1%. I don't remember the exact number but back when the 1% movement was going on, someone made statistics/studies and to belong to the top 1% you needed to own assets (a fulyl paid house or a bank acocunt , etc...) in excess of 100 thousand usd, which puts a surprisingly amount of people as the top 1% (including a relative whose day job is house cleaning and her husband job is building mainteinance).

now, about aniem and manga being about normal people, I like to apply that rule to character's appareance/handsomeness, unless stated otherwise, un harem, romantic series assume all the characters, including the mc, but most importantly, including the girls, are normal looking (so mio from k-on is both normal lookign AND chubby, same for madoka and homura is supossed to be pretty because it's satted she is).
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#861208



Joined: 07 Oct 2016
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 12:05 pm Reply with quote
maximilianjenus wrote:
a fun thing at being at the top 1% is that the people there don't realize they are there because they are looking at their own top 1%. I don't remember the exact number but back when the 1% movement was going on, someone made statistics/studies and to belong to the top 1% you needed to own assets (a fulyl paid house or a bank acocunt , etc...) in excess of 100 thousand usd, which puts a surprisingly amount of people as the top 1% (including a relative whose day job is house cleaning and her husband job is building mainteinance).


And note that this includes a large number of artists - most award nominees, unless you've heard a bunch of drama about their financial issues (vaguely aware that this was the case with Johnny Depp recently? And that was why he did a bunch of dumb movies to the point where no one respects him as an artist anymore, even though he has proven himself to be a good actor on a few occasions (iirc, one movie where he played a famous writer?))

1% is 1 in 100, after all.

Honestly, I find the whole Shakespearean-style stories-about-kings thing to be a lot more interesting than the typical anime "oh lol all that money we got from that job went to cleaning up the collateral damage, so we're broke again! yay status quo!" thing in the "normal people" series you mentioned.
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invalidname
Get off my lawn!Get off my lawn!


Joined: 11 Aug 2004
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Location: Grand Rapids, MI
PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 12:57 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
But the truth is, most people simply do something other than work at the top company until they retire/die. Some work retail. Others work in anime. Or at a bank. Or in government. Or become manga artists. Japan, like every other society out there, is a vast economy of people, nearly all of them located somewhere in the middle.

Apologies for bringing up this show again, but Rumbling Hearts has a pretty good example of this (and what the OP is asking for): the main characters are in an elite high school, and one is on track to make the Olympic swimming team, but after tragedy strikes (and we time-skip three years) the protagonist spends years as a hikkikomori, recovers, but only to the degree that he can wait on tables to support himself, while being watched over by the ex-swimmer, who washed out of sports and now works as an Office Lady for a packaged foods company.

It's just a very "real life gets in the way" kind of thing… very relatable once you've gone through it.
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MarshalBanana



Joined: 31 Aug 2014
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 12:59 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Japanese people that don't make the top schools and get into the top jobs are lined up in front of a firing squad and executed at age 23.
I knew it, no need to read the rest of the artificial.
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 1:18 pm Reply with quote
The top 1% depends on whether you're looking at the whole world or one country, and whether you're looking at income or wealth.

Globally, you need only $32,400 annual adjusted gross income or wealth (all monetary assets) of more than $770K to be in the top 1% (by which they mean percentile, not percent). There are a lot of poor people in the world. The 8 richest men own wealth equivalent to that of 3.6 billion of the poorest put together.

If you just look at the U.S. you’d need $450,000 in income or more than $7 million in assets to make the cut.

(Investopedia)
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DerekL1963
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Joined: 14 Jan 2015
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Location: Puget Sound
PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 1:19 pm Reply with quote
Seems the questioner doesn't grasp that there are a lot more jobs than just the top and the bottom... There's a whole bunch of middle. And frankly, Justin doesn't help any by implying that people who don't get the 'top' schools and the 'top' jobs end up in second tier and low status jobs. The world isn't binary.

Sure, if you don't get into a 'top' school, you don't have a Golden Ticket to a high status job and a pipeline that could possibly deposit you in the C-suite. But that doesn't mean you can't get a perfectly respectable job as a salaryman (or as some form of professional, such a medical, accounting & finance, or engineering), possibly even at a high status company.
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EricJ2



Joined: 01 Feb 2014
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 3:17 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
but it's also a relic of the 1980s Japanese bubble economy, where getting into a good company would guarantee you employment for life.

Those days are long over. But in the absence of a sure thing, some people have taken that as a cue to become even more obsessively competitive in their academic and career pursuits. Others have lost hope that there is a place for them, and have become dropouts like NEETs and hikikomori. But the truth is, most people simply do something other than work at the top company until they retire/die. Some work retail. Others work in anime. Or at a bank. Or in government. Or become manga artists.


Basically, like Russia after Communism failed, Japan had lost a generation's main political ethic, namely that "Our corporate warriors will rule the world".
That was what was driving the other national pride, the school test scores compared to the Western countries' (and the US's), but the second didn't seem to have any function anymore without the first.

And like post-fall Russia--or the US after Watergate--you have a lost country of people falling into the categories of:
1) those who think they were better off with the old philosophy,
2) those who religiously want to revive the mythical ancient-glory culture from long before that,
3) those who go in the opposite direction and grab ANY new self-indulgent crackpot philosophy that looks different, and
4) those who just want to make money and let the rest of the country go to heck.
Japan's young people don't see the need to get into "top schools" anymore if they want to do what they want, so some just push harder, some just crack from the pushing, some just try to find themselves in the new culture of Getting By, and some just get off the carousel and try to pursue individual business startups on the web or in art.
There aren't enough hit examples yet of the new kids pursuing their own dreams to become a new generational model yet, but we've already got the friction between the NEET's trying to make a new trendy crackpot philosophy of "I've escaped work!", and the old hard-liners saying "Aha, THEY'RE the reason we're not conquering the world again! It's those anime shows and Internet games that caused it!"

Actually, when I first read the header, I immediately associated Godai from the end of Maison Ikkoku:
The first episodes were about how he's punishingly trying to get out of "Ronin" status and get into college, he spends a short time at Third-Rate University, and ends up at the end of the series with a uniquely creative job that his dumb luck and talents wandered into and he never quite expected to have.
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maximilianjenus



Joined: 29 Apr 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:35 pm Reply with quote
Gina Szanboti wrote:
are a lot of poor people in the world. The 8 richest men own wealth equivalent to that of 3.6 billion of the poorest put together.


and if the top 1% gave all their assets to teh bottom 30%, that'd be enough to feed and clothe the 1% for one year, then we are back to square one.
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Calsolum



Joined: 11 May 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:35 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Japanese people that don't make the top schools and get into the top jobs are lined up in front of a firing squad and executed at age 23.


I'm just gonna bookmark this page for when they eventually make an anime with this plot (if there isn't already one)
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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:29 pm Reply with quote
I'm interested in what educational opportunities people have in Japan if they didn't get into a university requiring an admission test, or dropped out the first time around, or even if someone just wants to pursue a career change. Are there community colleges and vocational programs? Apprenticeships? The university admissions process seems harder in Japan than the US, so what options for education does everyone else have?
As for the vast middle, Sakura Quest seems like a good depiction of it this season--ordinary people in middle class jobs.
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Sparvid



Joined: 06 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:51 pm Reply with quote
The plot of Wood Job starts out with the main character failing to get in to the university he was aiming for and dumped by his girlfriend, and so ends up going on a one year forestry course out in the countryside instead.
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Sakagami Tomoyo



Joined: 06 Dec 2008
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Location: Melbourne, VIC, Australia
PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:42 pm Reply with quote
Justin wrote:
I don't know about you, but watching movies and TV shows about the 1% sounds pretty dull to me.

There are exceptions, but basically agreed. As fun as it can be to have a series show people with the wealth to do all manner of crazy things, people who need to throw themselves at extra jobs and pull of zany schemes to get the money they need are a richer source of both drama and comedy overall.
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tehhead



Joined: 11 Apr 2013
Posts: 19
PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 11:32 pm Reply with quote
Calsolum wrote:
Quote:
Japanese people that don't make the top schools and get into the top jobs are lined up in front of a firing squad and executed at age 23.


I'm just gonna bookmark this page for when they eventually make an anime with this plot (if there isn't already one)


an anime where automation have been internalized on every part of the world
starring several protagonist that want to search the land where human can live free
and a person who strive to live under current society
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Kadmos1



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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 2:01 am Reply with quote
"Rumbling Hearts" is also a notable case of NTR.
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invalidname
Get off my lawn!Get off my lawn!


Joined: 11 Aug 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 5:23 am Reply with quote
Quote:
Even perennial favorites like Cowboy Bebop, Evangelion, and even Naruto could be said to be about normal or borderline-failing people in society, at least those who start out that way.

Yeah, I was trying to think of more examples, and Cowboy Bebop came to mind. Think of how the characters in this show are working in a disreputable and socially-scorned line of work (bounty hunters), by comparison to other law-and-order type anime. Teams like Ghost in the Shell's Section 9 or Psycho Pass' Unit One are more like elite crime-fighting units, while the crew of the Bebop barely make enough money to eat.
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