Contemporary Japan has provoked many dystopian visions. This paper reviews two versions from the field of social / political criticism and from opposite sides of the political spectrum. Saeki Keishi’s Jiyū to minshushugi wo mō yameru (“We’ve had enough of freedom and democracy!”, 2008) depicts contemporary Japan as a country that is metaphysically failing as a result of its successful modernization and democratization, and exhorts its readers to revert to the famed “traditional values” in order to avert impending social and political disintegration. Mutsū bunmei (“Painless Civilization”, 2003) by Morioka Masahiro pictures a vision of how humanity, freedom and the joy of life are lost due to relentless welfare engineering and suggests that we return to a more authentic mode of life. In spite of their conspicuous differences in intent, substance, and moral agenda, both dystopias converge in their denials of the political as a mode of analysis and a frame of action.