In a beautiful fractal way (with Fukushima officials selling Fukushima as "heart-throbbing place"), here's the Japanese national government setting up a council to sell Japan as a "cool place" to foreigners.
What do they want to sell to foreigners? Anime and fashion.
One of the council members is going to be a famous (infamous, depending on whom you ask) TV producer who runs the all-girl "idol" group of AKB. The 54-year-old producer has these young girls and women live together under his tight rules, which include never to date a boy while being a member of this idol group. One of the girls was caught breaking the rule, but she disciplined herself voluntarily by shaving her head and made a tearful apology on video.
Anyway, the Abe administration's idea of "Cool Japan" is to include people like this producer (calling them "learned or knowledgeable people" or "the wise") in a committee headed by an LDP politician whose political views are characterized as "ultra-nationalist" by some. It's apparently so important for the prime minister that this politician, Ms. Tomomi Inada, has a ministerial position.
From Asahi Shinbun, whose reporting definitely changed in January in favor of the Abe administration (2/26/2013):
Mr. Yasushi Akimoto will be one of the members of the government's Cool Japan Promotion Council
The Abe administration set up the "Cool Japan Promotion Council" (chaired by Tomomi Inada, minister in charge of Cool Japan strategy) in order to come up with ways to sell Japanese fashion and culture to foreigners.
The council will made up of vice ministers from the related ministries and seven people of knowledge including Mr. Yasushi Akimoto, producer of "AKB48". The council will discuss how the government and private industry can cooperate to increase the export of contents and how to disseminate information, and come up with the proposals. The proposals will be incorporated into the growth strategy that the national government is to finalize in June.
Other people of knowledge are: Tsuguhiko Kadokawa (chairman of Kadokawa Group Holdings, a publishing and media entity), Kin Bí-Leng (commentator), Junko Koshino (fashion designer), Rikifusa Satake (director of Japan Food Service Association), Sen Soshitsu (current head of the Urasenke tea school), Tatsumi Yoda (CEO of Gaga Corporation, a movie distributor).
Here are faces of the people who will decide "cool":
Tomomi Inada, minister in charge of Cool Japan strategy:
Yasushi Akimoto of AKB fame:
Mr. Tsuguhiko Kadokawa:
Ms. Kin Bí-Leng:
Ms. Junko Koshino:
Mr. Rikifusa Sateke: