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Olympic Games cost-cutting plan was downsized for American TV

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Cheapskates depicted in “rakugo” traditional Japanese comic storytelling take their parsimony to such an extreme that they are sometimes almost refreshing.

In one rakugo story, a master tells an errand boy to go and borrow a hammer from a neighbor’s house. The master of the house asks the boy whether the nails are made of iron or bamboo and says he cannot lend a hammer for iron nails because the hammer would wear thin.

When the boy tells his master what the neighbor said, the man angrily says, “What a tightwad! Well then, we have to use ours.”

We need the spirit of thrift, if not parsimony, for managing the costs of the Olympics, which critics say are now exorbitant.

A small step has been taken against the Olympics extravaganza. The........

© The Asahi Shimbun

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