How wonderful are your local Yakuza? graph of japanese opinion
Regardless of how long I live here, and how often people try to explain the Yakuza to me, I always shake my head in disbelief when I see stories like this one on the guys who put the Organised into Organised Crime.

Crime syndicates in Japan had around 86,300 members as of Dec. 31, down some 700 from a year earlier, marking the first drop in 10 years, the National Police Agency said Thursday. The Kobe-based Yamaguchi-gumi, accounted for 50.1% of all the members, passing the majority threshold for the first time.

What sort of questionnaire got these answers? Do the gangs submit annual reports? I can only imagine the text: “The chairman reports that outstanding bad debts are down 22.9% due to a 16.3% increase in the number of kneecaps broken. Workforce loyalty is also strong, as indicated by a two-thirds reduction in pinkie removals.” Three significant figures of accuracy suggests relatively detailed numbers are being obtained from somewhere, but where?

Note that the graph above may not, in fact, be truthful. In fact, I may very well have made it all up!


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