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Tokyo, 3 neighboring prefectures urge central gov't to issue state of emergency over virus

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Koike and Suga don't get on,but with hospital beds in those 4 prefectures operating from 98-148% capacity,something needs to give.But businesses are going to want to be shown the money for closing, like that 1 mil + last year.Suga is gonna hold out until he's got no choice.Companies don't care about lockdowns,because they want their staff to come to work,but go straight home after and they'll be alright!

10 ( +21 / -11 )

Time to get out!

-15 ( +10 / -25 )

Yes, do it now..better impose all out lockdown for 2-3 weeks.

0 ( +19 / -19 )

In less than 48 hours millions of Kanto folks are going to be back on their daily commute with many criss-crossing the above prefectures and at work again. Not sure what a state of emergency will look like this time around but if they are serious they have to do something about crowded trains and subways.

23 ( +27 / -4 )

In a vacuum, this is clearly the correct choice to get the increase in virus cases under control. Seems pretty clear that Suga has his eyes on economic issues first and foremost, though. Will be interesting to see which side wins out.

14 ( +20 / -6 )

Will be interesting to see which side wins out.

There is no "which side." By the time NHK posts "rumors", it's always set in stone. Have you heard of a case in the past year when there were rumors but it didn't happen? I haven't.

So this is happening.

14 ( +21 / -7 )

Not sure what a state of emergency will look like this time around

What would change from the last time? Nothing. They "request" closing of places and companies to telework, and most companies/establishments comply.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

The timing is a bit awkward. I think the government would like to wait and see if infection numbers fall following the four-day New Year holiday, considering that many people did not return to their hometowns (according to NHK). Next weekend is also a long weekend with many young people wanting to celebrate Coming-of-Age Day in some sort of ceremony.

Maybe the SOE will start from January 12.

In any case, the government has to give businesses (mainly restaurants, bars and so on) time to prepare, plus outline what compensation is available to those establishments that close (since there is no legal obligation under Japanese law to close).

In addition, what about schools and daycare centers? If they close, there will be massive headaches for working parents.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

It is the probably the first time that I have to agree with Zoroto...

A SOE will not change anything.

It is only a request to do some things.

It is depend upon the people to follow those requests or not.

-9 ( +9 / -18 )

This should be the top afternoon headline.

From NHK World News:

Japan stepping up preparations for vaccinations.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210102_09/amp.html

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Yes, do it now..better impose all out lockdown for 2-3 weeks.

I personally feel that the Japan style "lockdown" might help in the short term, but will not help in the medium term. Until vaccinations can reduce transmissions, the virus will just come back without widespread and easy testing and tracing, leading to enforceable quarantines. We know increased testing/tracing is not happening for whatever reason, and it seems they are shamefully dragging their feet on vaccinations.

5 ( +11 / -6 )

many people did not return to their hometowns

People didn't return to their hometowns in the last 2 months while the cases exponentially increased. The virus has been spread all over Japan already thanks to GoTo.

I think the government would like to wait and see if infection numbers fall following the four-day New Year holiday,

The numbers will of course fall, because most testing is suspended and places are closed. The government also knows this.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

Better get the vaccine approved asap as this is the only way life will return to normal.

12 ( +17 / -5 )

Japan stepping up preparations for vaccinations.

Yes,I read the same information in a japanese newspaper this morning.

So let us hope it is true.

But like I said before, for the public, I dont expect any vaccination before summer.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

The lockdown in April last year was pretty depressing in Tokyo. For example: gyms will close, large chain coffee shops and restaurants will close, granny police will be out in force taking photos of anyone at the park to post to social media and shame (yes it happened), gym equipment at the parks will have yellow tape and blue tarps over them so you cannot exercise at all, and very ironically the trains will run and many will still go to work on such crowded trains.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

This should be the top afternoon headline.

stepping up preparations for vaccinations.

This is not a newsworthy headline, sorry. If it said something like "Japan approves vaccine and starts vaccination campaign next week", then yes, that's newsworthy.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

But guys... come on... if they do that, the Olympics are surely a bust, no? I mean, what's more important to you? a person's life, or a pat on the back and being told you hosted a good Games? You can't honestly tell me you think lives are more important than a moment of fame.

5 ( +22 / -17 )

There is no "which side." By the time NHK posts "rumors", it's always set in stone. Have you heard of a case in the past year when there were rumors but it didn't happen? I haven't.

So this is happening.

The only thing NHK said is they will request a state of emergency. We don't know how Suga will respond, but I guess he is being backed into a corner.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I felt safer on my 6 GoToTravel vacations since June than I do riding the Odakyu LIne into Tokyo.

Shinkansens, hotels and all staff were very prepared to make our trips safe. Sure wish we could collect on my next trip on the 6th.

NHK did put out an article at least giving rough dates for the start of vaccines. We are in those first groups. Let's get rolling.

-12 ( +5 / -17 )

I felt safer on my 6 GoToTravel vacations since June than I do riding the Odakyu LIne into Tokyo.

Shinkansens, hotels and all staff were very prepared to make our trips safe. Sure wish we could collect on my next trip on the 6th.

Unless your trips involve going to the local izakayas/bars at night, you are right to feel safer. They should have shut down the night-life before shutting down GoTo. Unfortunately they don't have the power to do so, I guess.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Walked past a Starbucks an hour ago -- absolutely packed. The little seals they put on the tables that say, "Please do not sit here. Social distancing" were mostly covered with books and people were sitting there. No partitions between the seats and tables, and people were lined up basically pressing into each other. Some people were without masks, and some were laughing and I could practically hear them shouting from outside. This is what comes of the government's "suggestions" and lack of legislation and enforcement to MAKE people stay home. This is exactly what happened before the Olympics were postponed, when people like Shimamura Ken died because the government said it was no problem, just avoid each other, etc., and then, as I pointed out ONE DAY after the Olympics were declared postponed, Suddenly Koike put on her diaper mask and talked about Tokyo declaring a state of emergency.

That's what they are doing here, too... gambling with people's lives and trying to pray it away, and only when the Lemmings are over the cliff will they call it an emergency and say they need to stop the flow of infected, etc. They are scared stiff about the investors and contracts over the Olympics, as well as reputation, and if they were TRULY worried about the economy, what do you think is going to happen when the medical system busts open at the seams later this month?

-4 ( +14 / -18 )

No no no !!

Many people, like me, will lose a huge chunk (if not all) of their income.

Most people here urging a lockdown won’t be affected financially - very selfish !

-2 ( +13 / -15 )

I understand tooyesnew's plight. He needs to work.

Demanding a shut down will not work. This is not LA.

-6 ( +8 / -14 )

If they issue a SOE then my hoikuen will close which means myself and my wife who have been responsibly teleworking since April and have not been outside socialising all this year will have to stop working from home and take care of our child during work hours. Thanks to all the idiots who cannot stop going out at night in crowded izakayas and bars maskless shouting to each other over music and drunk salarymen, thanks.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

People didn't return to their hometowns in the last 2 months while the cases exponentially increased. The virus has been spread all over Japan already thanks to GoTo.

First of all, cases did not exponentially increase, they trickled up. You need to look up the definition of exponential increase.

Secondly, the number of infections went up as the weather got colder. This was expected to happen with or without GoTo, as it did everywhere else in the world.

I do agree with your main point that people staying where they live, where they might being going out to eat and drink with friends instead of spending quiet time with their family in the country-side, won't necessarily do any good.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

I hear you TokyoJoe.

I just came back from cycling along the Edogawa river.

My route home took me past the Costco,LalaPort and Ikea at Shin Misato.........the car parks at all of them were rammed with people.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

I just got back from Krispy Kreme donuts at Kawasaki Station. The place was jam packed, I had a hard time getting a seat. The nerve of these people!

-8 ( +8 / -16 )

Parking lots totally full at Oak Mall in Tsuruma and Rinkan Mall in Chuorinkan.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Tooheysnew, could not agree more. Last years SOE took its toll on our company and another may see it off completely. A lot of us simply cannot afford not to work. We have bills to pay, kids to raise, a Japanese festival seasons to bleed us all dry.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

@Reckless

Man, I really like you and I appreciate your posts, but Buddy... you can not complain about people at a Donuts shop if you go to the same shop by yourself

2 ( +14 / -12 )

you can not complain about people at a Donuts shop if you go to the same shop by yourself

I don't go for just the donuts, the cute girls selling the donuts make the experience awesome. Can only stay at home with the battle axe so much before going nuts. I cannot survive another lockdown. If it happens I may join the street revelers in London or Miami. Carpe diem.

-11 ( +9 / -20 )

@Monty

@Reckless

Man, I really like you and I appreciate your posts, but Buddy... you can not complain about people at a Donuts shop if you go to the same shop by yourself...

Yeah Monty you don't think he is being sarcastic....

Another lockdown is not needed there is no way to contain this now perfect example of how an incompetent government failed its people..

11 ( +15 / -4 )

Let me go back to the topic SOE...

Since one year I have to live my life like millions of other japanese people in Tokyo.

Numbers increased, numbers decreased...

A SOE was set in May. (I think).

But mine and millions of other japanese lives didnt change. Going to work in full packed trains, have to eat lunch in restaurants ( in my case i am lucky because the company has a cantine), have to buy daily things in supermarkets, our wives also have the same things to do every day and my kid have to go to school.

So, me and millions of other people are in the same situation. In Tokyo, Osaka...wherever.

But everyday whining and complaining doesnt help anyone. Neither to my life, neither to the public life.

What I and millions of other people must do is, doing our best to help that the virus will get under control.

Wear mask, use sanitizers and keep social distance where it is possible.

I always stay in the back at the traffic lights, I always wait at the escalators until everyone is gone...and so on.

But did you Guys recognize that in the full packed trains and on escalators where is no social distance possible, the people dont talk? Did you recognize that?

What all of us here should do is:

Stop whining and complaining Nonstop how bad Japan handels the Virus situation. That doesnt help anyone.

Instead of that, think positive and show the people how to behave correctly in daily life!

And, if you have a Mom and Pops Izakaya in your neighbougrhood and they do their best possible prevention, support them!

Support them by visiting their Izakaya or by using take out.

We foreigners and the japanese are sitting in the same boat!

So instead of complaing to each other, we should support each other in doing the right prevention.

And, please keep in mind: each persons life is different!

Each persons personal life situation is different!

So a lockdown, which is probably best for some person, can destroy the life and existence of another person.

Always keep that im mind!

-2 ( +16 / -18 )

I don't think there will be another state of emergency, unfortunately. In Japanese politics, most politics really, it is better to make no decision than to make a bad one.

The earlier state of emergency was basically virtue signaling - Abe was saying he did something without really doing anything at all (performance

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Its all politics, Koieke doesn't want to an s.o.e anymore than Suga. But by doing this, she absolves herself or any blame. She can simply blame the central government for not issuing an s.o.e

Likewise when the s.o.e results in job loses and suicides its the central governments fault not her's.

Of course if hospital addmissions go down she will seek to take the credit.

Each prefecture has the power to ask restaurants to close (not stop at 10pm) but funds would come from the prefecture not the central government something she doesn't want to do.

Same as last year, all love the mic time but don't want to take responsibility.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

last post got cut off. That should be: The earlier state of emergency was basically virtue signaling - Abe was saying he did something without really doing anything at all - "an ounce of appearance outweighs a pound of performance" in Japanese politics.

The first SOE was done during the down time of mid-March to mid-April: schools were winding down (half-days, cleaning, review work) and stopping the last few weeks of the old year and the first few of the new was no big deal; job hunting and recruiting were finished, entrance exams were finished, taxes were done, no major events or holidays, only a few minor ceremonies were cancelled (graduations, entrance ceremonies). The SOE did not really "stop" anything because there was nothing to stop. But, boy did Abe really look like a leader who cared about his people and could make though decision (really just done for political expediency).

Now, however, is entrance exam season for JHS to Uni, the start of the new 共通テスト, job hunting and recruiting season, the start of tax season, companies start deciding transfers and promotion, shareholder meeting...etc. Suga will not do anything to interfere with these. That is too tough a decision for him to want to take responsibility for. Like I said, no decision is better than a bad one (or one that causes 迷惑).

5 ( +6 / -1 )

@Monty: Triple thumbs up.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

Thanks to all the idiots who cannot stop going out at night in crowded izakayas and bars maskless shouting to each other over music and drunk salarymen, thanks.

Yep. The morons have done a bang up job once again.

I’ve posted this before but my principle of taking care of all members of society, morons included, is being severely tested here.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Monty, well said.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

@Monty

Being positive and following health measures is not enough.

Going out creates a possibility of virus transmission, especially when crossing anyone any moment to less than 1 m. I assume it happens all the time in Japan when queueing, elevator, train, etc

Asking all people to behave is like asking all people to get educated !

Not possible.

Japan will like most countries with light measures and no stay put orders see waves. Shikata ga nai ?

1 ( +6 / -5 )

State of Emergency in Japan ? Meh ....

4 ( +5 / -1 )

SoE = Request

Nobody will comply, business owners learnt their lesson and aren't stupid anymore, I would 100% ignore their request if my business was located in Kanto. Risking my livelihood for a virus that has a 99.5% recovery rate or better if you don't have any comorbidities? No way Jose

0 ( +13 / -13 )

Why are Japanese authorities so reluctant to do wider scale testing? As someone said, this is not Zambia. Or was it Zimbabwe?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

They think they can contain the pandemic by issuing "state of emergency" weeks or months. It is an optimistic idea. If the bad situation continues a whole year in 2021, can the government pay compensation money to bankrupt businesses and job losers?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I've been slowly building up my own home gym since the last state of emergency. I don't have money though to buy my own sauna. I sure hope my fav onsen doesn't close again. Also, teaching on Zoom really sucks too. I hope the kids can keep coming to school.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@tooheysnew

Most people here urging a lockdown won’t be affected financially - very selfish !

Some people here think about their finances before the well-being of all their fellow citizens. Very selfish!

@Northernlife

Another lockdown is not needed there is no way to contain this now

Yes, there is a way, and it's called a lockdown. Science (sorry, rude word) shows that is how to fight it.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Whoops! Not another ! It is gonna happen doesn't it ?

There simply must be a smarter way to solve the hospitals situation.

why not offer the young tested positive (there are thousands by now) and covid19 immune well paid covid19 only nursing jobs ?

They could deploy them in hospitals or transformed hotel rooms in a way so doctors and experienced staff can guide them if needed whilst keep focus on seriously critical issues , covid or else.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Maybe, just maybe, a huge number of Japanese simply are not afraid of this virus, and for good reason. Yes, it will affect some people, and some will die from it. But Japan has one of the highest national average IQs on Earth.

Could it be that they figured out on their own that most are unlikely to be affected, and would rather get on with their lives? As opposed to a bunch of fear-mongering foreigners on a website telling them what they should be doing. Ever heard of agency? I’m with them in the camp that lockdowns will only do more harm than good, as you can’t eradicate this virus.

-9 ( +5 / -14 )

We need two month total police state style lockdown now please. A state of emergency in Japan don’t enforce anything other than a gentle urge..

-12 ( +1 / -13 )

why not offer the young tested positive (there are thousands by now) and covid19 immune well paid covid19 only nursing jobs ?

Oh ...my...god. Laugh or cry? (You mean "negative", by the way.)

You might not know it, but nursing is a skilled profession. That means you have to enroll in a course, study to become a nurse. You don't just turn up and say "Here I am. I'll be a nurse now!"

4 ( +7 / -3 )

@drmaybe

obviously you’ll still be collecting your full salary while laying around at home in your pyjamas, sipping tea & nibbling on your crumpets.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Oh ...my...god. Laugh or cry? (You mean "negative", by the way.)

I meant positive. The ones in 20s and 30s we read about every day.

Why laugh or cry ? I don't get it !

You might not know it, but nursing is a skilled profession. That means you have to enroll in a course, study to become a nurse. You don't just turn up and say "Here I am. I'll be a nurse now!"

Actually you do ! In war documentaries people do this all the time (even now in Syria for ex.) it is more then doable I think ..I am sure these people can be utilised around non critical tasks to improve efficiency .

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

That press statement after the meeting with Koike San, Nishimura San and the 3 schoolboys was some of the most degrading tv appearances by politicians i haver ever had to see.

may all the Gods and power of nature be with us. We need it all.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I thought that the Governors had the power to declare the state of emergency for their own prefecture! I might be wrong but didn’t the Abe administration pass a legislation allowing this? Why are they still requesting the central Government to do it?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@ Jim

Same reason they won't cancel the Olympics.....accountability.

Specifically, who pays what to whom, and non recoverable 'gifts' and contacts.

There is a disgusting game of 'chicken' taking place.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Suicide numbers going tru the roof... When you stop this nonsense corona show?

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Only 388 people with no underlying conditions under the age of 65 have died of corona in hospitals in England. Bet the figure is much lower in Japan!

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Stop testing! Then numbers won’t increase!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Finally, prefectural government got tired of waiting for the central one to take the effective measures for the outbreak. I wish I could hear what Suga-san answered the request they gave. I can guess what he said, though. Probably said "keep an eye on the condition". Doesn't he want to take the responsibility so much!?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Japan has had almost a year now to prepare for a spike in Covid-19 infections. Why hasn't there been any construction or Covid-19 specific hospitals to treat patients? I think China built one in three weeks. Too many hankos and studies needed I guess. A now its probably considered too late.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Why hasn't there been any construction

Probably will be built after 5 years.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

My only impression since last January is, the overwhelming majority is still downplaying , underestimating , ignoring possible solutions and therefore not intentionally and consciously but in principle really intending to die within the next few months or years.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

JAPANESE government have to lock down immediately. Unless, the want to reduce the Japanese population.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@ TARA TAN KITAOKATA

"JAPANESE government have to lock down immediately."

There is no evidence that a lockdown works better than masks, social distancing, and good hygiene. However, the number of suicides, bankrupt companies (which employ millions), and DV has increased exponentially. LA, NY, virtually any lockdown in any city has been ineffective at slowing down the transmission. Restaurants and shops that take precautions have a low actual transmission rate (about 2%); being locked down is the problem.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

prefectures will have to act on their own, it's clear the central system fax machine is jammed

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Go To Eat was the dumb campaign, not Go To Travel. People don't need to go to izakayas, clubs, etc., so they shouldn't. Everyone should assume that they have COVID-19 and assume that everyone else has COVID-19, and act accordingly. Maybe you should also assume you're going to die from it. Might change your perspective.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The recovery rates are very high and this is why people consider this to be just a variant of the flu.

So much fake news by the media is eroding trust and people are becoming more and more confused and in turn defiant.

They don't see the threat as a reason to melt down the economy.

All will be well

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

bo

The recovery rates are very high and this is why people consider this to be just a variant of the flu.

The flue is a Corona type virus too, so yes they are related.

They don't see the threat as a reason to melt down the economy.

And they are right. An economic meltdown would cause a lot of deaths, unlike this virus with a mortality rate of 0,03% for those under 70.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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