American Enterprise Institute Fellow Blames Cosplay For Poor Economy

roseofbattle

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Apr 18, 2011
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American Enterprise Institute Fellow Blames Cosplay For Poor Economy

In a poor economic climate, a columnist at the American Enterprise Institute claims cosplayers are too busy dressing up in costumes to get jobs.

Cosplayers signal bad signs for the U.S. economy, James Pethokoukis, American Enterprise Institute fellow and columnist, wrote yesterday in The Week. [http://theweek.com/article/index/269570/why-the-rise-of-cosplay-is-a-bad-sign-for-the-us-economy]

Pethokoukis examines the economic situation of Japan - decades of stagnation that now hurt Japanese young adults who are unable to find permanent jobs and live with their parents. Pethokoukis cites an interview with Masahiro Yamada [http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/ec422956-3f22-11e4-a861-00144feabdc0.html#axzz3Fl6y7Maa], a Chuo University sociology professor, which states many young people have taken to dressing up as heroes and escaping to games, anime, and cosplay. Yamada states economic growth in Japan has declined while the rate of unmarried people has increased.

"After all, it's not that these young adults in Japan are resisting becoming productive members of the economy - it's that there just aren't enough opportunities for them," Pethokoukis writes in The Week. So an increasingly large number of them spend an increasingly large amount of time living in make-believe fantasy worlds, pretending they are someone else, somewhere else. This is a very bad thing for the Japanese economy."

Transitioning to a poor economic situation for young adults in the U.S., Pethokoukis notes cosplay visibility has increased recently. Last year the show Heroes of Cosplay premiered on SyFy, and more attendees have started cosplaying to large events such as San Diego Comic-Con.

This weekend in New York City, cosplayers are attending New York Comic-Con in costumes they either made or purchased. NYCC even has a cosplay craftsmanship competition. [http://www.newyorkcomiccon.com/Events/NYCC-Eastern-Championships-of-Cosplay/]

This all takes place during a slow economic recovery in the U.S. Pethokoukis uses this to argue, "When you're disillusioned with the reality of your early adult life, dressing up like Doctor Who starts looking better and better. It's not to say that all or even most cosplay aficionados are struggling to find work. It's only to say that any rise in people fleeing reality for fantasy suggests problems with our reality."

However, evidence shows that many different kinds of people cosplay. Last year, Li Kovacs [http://www.businessinsider.com/real-jobs-of-comic-con-cosplayers-2013-10] works with Nintendo to model as characters for upcoming games.

Pethokoukis' previous article in The Week argued American businessmen are ruining the U.S economy [http://theweek.com/article/index/267303/how-american-businessmen-are-ruining-american-business-mdash-and-the-us-economy].

Source: The Week [http://theweek.com/article/index/269570/why-the-rise-of-cosplay-is-a-bad-sign-for-the-us-economy]


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fix-the-spade

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Feb 25, 2008
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Well, I read it and... not sure if serious...

His last article was right on the nose about the desire for an immediate profit being ultimately destructive, but this one is a bit mental.
 

Defective_Detective

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Jul 26, 2010
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Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!

This columnist is not blaming cosplayers for a failing economy. He is noting that there is a rise in escapist activity within the younger population when there are less opportunities for them in the real world.

He is saying cosplay is a symptom, not the cause!
 

roseofbattle

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Apr 18, 2011
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Could America have NEETs on the level that Japan does?

Now I'm interested to find out what kind of things contributes to enabling so many NEETs to exist.
 

drkchmst

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Mar 28, 2010
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Well... The dude does have a point- reality sucks and I want out. I just don't dress up to escape... Just the occasional declaration of immortality, supreme evilness and what not. You know, using a god complex to justify reality.
 

UberPubert

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Jun 18, 2012
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Defective_Detective said:
Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!
Yeah, seriously.

The paragraph before what's quoted says "It's hard to blame them. After all, it's not that these young adults in Japan are resisting becoming productive members of the economy ? it's that there just aren't enough opportunities for them."

Rose, how do you go from "it's hard to blame these people, there's not enough opportunities for them" to "I blame them"?
 

Draconalis

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Sep 11, 2008
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I Cosplay to break up the monotony of life, not really to escape.

I still have my 10-7, but every now and then, I like to break the routine and see something different.
 

Raziel

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Defective_Detective said:
Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!
The title is just reversed. Hes blaming the rise of cosplay on the poor economy.
 

Defective_Detective

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Jul 26, 2010
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Raziel said:
Defective_Detective said:
Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!
The title is just reversed. Hes blaming the rise of cosplay on the poor economy.
No. No, it isn't "just reversed". It's misrepresenting the columnist's entire article. It should be changed.

"... Fellow blames cosplay for poor economy..."

Look how that reads. It implies cosplay is a cause for a poor economy, which is not the content of the discussed article if you even have a cursory glance at the content.

It is almost click-bait worthy.
 

prowll

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Aug 19, 2008
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Defective_Detective said:
Raziel said:
Defective_Detective said:
Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!
The title is just reversed. Hes blaming the rise of cosplay on the poor economy.
No. No, it isn't "just reversed". It's misrepresenting the columnist's entire article. It should be changed.

"... Fellow blames cosplay for poor economy..."

Look how that reads. It implies cosplay is a cause for a poor economy, which is not the content of the discussed article if you even have a cursory glance at the content.

It is almost click-bait worthy.
And even if reversed, really is applicable to Japan, and not so much to the US. As the article pointed out, people that cosplay in the US are students, in security, fincance, ect. And how do you afford to cosplay without a job?
 
Aug 31, 2012
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Defective_Detective said:
Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!

This columnist is not blaming cosplayers for a failing economy. He is noting that there is a rise in escapist activity within the younger population when there are less opportunities for them in the real world.

He is saying cosplay is a symptom, not the cause!
Gadzooks, never before have I seen such a thing on the escapist.

Defective_Detective said:
It is almost click-bait worthy.
Surely not sir, this bastion of calm and reason would never stoop to such a thing.


Yeah, interesting article, people try to escape more when reality isn't quite as shiny, never thought I'd see the cosplay barometer of economic trends, along with the skirt length and waitress attractiveness index. Shame about the title.
 

Micalas

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Mar 5, 2011
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Anime, manga, and cosplay can be a pretty expensive hobby. I don't know if this is a product of the failing economy.
 

SinisterDeath

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drkchmst said:
Well... The dude does have a point- reality sucks and I want out. I just don't dress up to escape... Just the occasional declaration of immortality, supreme evilness and what not. You know, using a god complex to justify reality.
Yep. These kids should escape reality like 'real' adults.
Go to a bar, drink until they black out and wake up next to a werewolf with a baby in the oven. Yeesh.
 

razer17

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Feb 3, 2009
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roseofbattle said:
"After all, it's not that these young adults in Japan are resisting becoming productive members of the economy - it's that there just aren't enough opportunities for them," Pethokoukis writes in The Week. So an increasingly large number of them spend an increasingly large amount of time living in make-believe fantasy worlds, pretending they are someone else, somewhere else. This is a very bad thing for the Japanese economy."
Okay, that headline is click bait, pure and simple. He says the exact opposite of what you state he's saying in the title. He's saying that Japanese youngsters want to get jobs, but because of the bad economy they can't. And to escape the situation they play make believe.

Unless I'm horribly interpreting that quote, he is absolutely not saying that cosplaying ruins the economy.
 

Kenjitsuka

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Sep 10, 2009
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Defective_Detective said:
Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!

This columnist is not blaming cosplayers for a failing economy. He is noting that there is a rise in escapist activity within the younger population when there are less opportunities for them in the real world.

He is saying cosplay is a symptom, not the cause!
True. But a site called "The Escapist" might not want to advertise that escapism is a sign of bad economy. :p

Anyway, the last paragraph held a lot of truth.
Cosplay can be a profession and is rapidly becoming an industry.

Maybe you could look at just Uncle Scrooge cosplayers and blame them for not spending enough to stimulate the economic rise. ;)
 

theSteamSupported

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Mar 4, 2012
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While I agree that the title is misleading, James Pethokoukis is still so wrong about this. He still implies that the rise of cosplay is a sign of how the bad the economy is, as if cosplaying is a negative symptom of the economic situation. He's basically saying "See what you did, Washington? You turned good, Chritian Americans into unmanly, childish japanophiles. The endtimes are coming."
 

Flatfrog

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Dec 29, 2010
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Yes, surely if anything cosplay is a sign of a *thriving* economy - isn't it basically a whole bunch of people spending large amounts of their disposable income on a frivolous pursuit? And in the process creating a whole industry that didn't previously exist?

I've always felt that the existence of cosplay, gaming culture, and pretty much everything else celebrated on this site is a clear demonstration that our society is essentially prosperous (perhaps *too* prosperous, and maybe that prosperity is built on the backs of poor people elsewhere, and maybe we're basically living in the last days of Rome. But you know. Gladiators! Yay!)
 

PunkRex

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Feb 19, 2010
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Defective_Detective said:
Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!
It does seem a little backward.

OT: You could say this about all forms of escapism, people need engagement.

Captcha: Have fun!

I'm trying.
 

Darth_Payn

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Aug 5, 2009
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theSteamSupported said:
While I agree that the title is misleading, James Pethokoukis is still so wrong about this. He still implies that the rise of cosplay is a sign of how the bad the economy is, as if cosplaying is a negative symptom of the economic situation. He's basically saying "See what you did, Washington? You turned good, Chritian Americans into unmanly, childish japanophiles. The endtimes are coming."
And it didn't occur to him that what's happening in Japan isn't the same for America. Over there, they view anime and manga as kid's stuff and view anyone who still likes that stuff into their adulthoods as losers and outcasts.
 

Vivi22

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Aug 22, 2010
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Defective_Detective said:
Wait. This headline is entirely misleading!

This columnist is not blaming cosplayers for a failing economy. He is noting that there is a rise in escapist activity within the younger population when there are less opportunities for them in the real world.

He is saying cosplay is a symptom, not the cause!
The headline is misleading. But his conclusions are still moronic.