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2001-04-15

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The distinction of center/periphery is based on the stratified structure of ancient cities, where the Court or a temple is located in the center, residencies of bureaucrats or noblemen in the semi-periphery and merchants, craftsmen or farmers in the periphery. But sociologists usually use it non-geographically as the dichotomy that indicates the uneven distribution of capital as power in social systems.

2001-04-08

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Many people are eager to satisfy their desire for difference; ladies with big-name brand products that show off their sense of fashion to the rivals, the intellectual elite that display their careers and title so as to distinguish them from the general public, bosses that flaunt their influence frequently to confirm the subordinates' loyalty (you can observe those bosses everywhere from a monkey mountain to Washington, D.C.) etc.

2000-08-06

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An ad hoc consultative agency of the prime minister in Japan, where there is no conscription, proposes that all 18-year-old children should engage in such social service as care for old people for a year. I'm afraid that, once this institution is established, it will be difficult to do away with it. Children of less than 19 years may well object to this compulsory gratuitous service, but they have no suffrage. When they come of age and gain their suffrage, they will have gone through with the service. If someone tried to abolish it, they would complain, "Why don't our junior have to serve us, while we serve our senior? We cannot admit such unfairness."