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Hundreds of mascots face chop with finance ministry budget cuts

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Indeed waste of money.

11 ( +14 / -3 )

Maybe so, but Kumamon BEAR???? He's one of my favorites. What will Kumamoto do ;-)

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Don't think Kumamon will be axed since it's working for Kumamoto Prefecture. I would guess this is performance based. There indeed are a lot of wasteful mascot characters which do not accomplish anything in terms of changing public perception, etc. And many mascots were just created because others had one.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

And, although a start, they really do need to focus on the real wastes of tax payers monies. Bridges to nowhere, parties, travel, sweetners, pork barells etc, etc, etc.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Sense at last?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I think some people would say the politicians also have those same issues.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

If anything, we need more of these.

We shouldn't do anything to reduce Japan's cuteness factor.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Whenever a bureaucrat finds a way to spend money on something this is what happens. Hundreds of mascots (or whatever) that serve no real purpose other than to exist. The people in government are always seeking ways to increase their budgets and justify their existence. The truly miraculous thing is that there is even an attempt to rationalizing such an extravagantly stupid waste of the publics scarce resources.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I wonder how mascots will be evaluated. Will they have to take a test? Have a performance review? Dance before a panel? Will hard-working, non-cute mascots be rated higher than rarely working, extremely cute characters. What about artistic value? Emotional value? We'll need a committee for this... or a special branch of government...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Kumamon is great. But I agree that they should axe all those countless mascots that you look at and go "WTF is that?". Funashii may be an exception because it's really funny.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Ganbarre, Kumamon !

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Fukuppy!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

If the money isn't spent on mascots, it might be spent on something even dumber.

I think restricting mascots to 2-D form would be a fair compromise.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

OssanAmerica "Kumamon is great. But I agree that they should axe all those countless mascots that you look at and go "WTF is that?". Funashii may be an exception because it's really funny."

Agree that a great many of them could be discontinued without causing much heartache or loss. But Funashii can't be axed by the government because he isn't a government sponsored official mascot. He could keep going till he collapses from exhaustion, gets tired of doing it, decides to retire on the money he's made, or the public gets tired of him.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@ Farmboy. All of your criteria should certainly be taken into consideration by the new Ministry of Mascots. I will throw into the mix: ability to withstand hot and cold conditions, the ability to sell products, statement of purpose, ability to come up with a good answer to "What are your strengths and weaknesses," and most importantly, how well does the mascot look on those ubiquitous little packets of tissues.

Oh, and as a nod to OssanAmerica's grave concerns: can the average person tell WHAT the mascot is or at least can it make a newscaster break out in hysterical giggles.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The ministry investigated 105 tax-funded organizations that had created their own yuru-kyara, and discovered “most of them had no clear purpose”, a finance ministry report said.

I think the one " clear purpose " these unnecessary mascots serve is to siphon public money off to the amakudari run useless organizations that create them. I agree they should keep a handful of the most successful ones and chop the rest. ( both the mascots and the " tax funded organizations" that run them.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

All of your criteria should certainly be taken into consideration by the new Ministry of Mascots.

I do like the acronym, and people could ask themselves, "What would MOM do?"

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I do recall I pointed out what a waste of money this crap was a few weeks ago and was voted down and told it didn't cost much. Ahem. Glad to see folks are coming to their senses with this BS>

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Farmboy "I wonder how mascots will be evaluated. Will they have to take a test? ..."

Maybe they could institute a peer review system like scientific journals use. Works we'll for Nature, ......oh wait .....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

so strange that only a few months ago we were reading articles about the positive image mascots gave to the military and other agencies. Even Zoos!

now all of a sudden they are a waste of time and money- or is it that there is a need to cut spending and the projects of real waste are not going to be touched- but these will be ...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Most politicians are mascots for their electorate, should investigate them?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Some DAMNED good news for once!!! Yeee HAWWWW!

Now start axing the politicians & useless civil servants & we can save some serious $$$$$!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Not a good idea. It's just going to create a bigger problem once these mascots start living in parks and under bridges.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Hundreds of mascots face chop with finance ministry budget cuts

Oh, chop them, please chop them!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I suggest a Hunger Games Death Match style contest to decide who gets culled. I'll be Fuji-Pyon, and Kumamon is getting both barrels early doors

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Can one be a mascot if there is no purpose?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The mascots should be escorted to the chopping block by the wasteful bureaucrats and politicians who though a cute public service is somehow an effective one.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I hope they don't cut Dioxo-kin, the mascot of rubbish incineration, or Chikan-kun, the mascot of city subways with 4 hands.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Good.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

LMMFAO lets see if the finance ministry cut the funding for the 2020 Olympic mascot!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@choiwaruoyaji We shouldn't do anything to reduce Japan's cuteness factor. unfortunately i think youve been totally assimilated.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

These mascots are not that bad. I don't get into them, but many people do. Spending public money on these mascots that bring a little happiness to many is much better than wasting on that fascicle whale research in the southern oceans.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Just so as long as they keep Kumamon...!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I suggest they marry off and if they are like the Japanese they will not have kids. In a decade or two problem solved.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I have no issue with the mascots per se, but the incessant bombardment in the media (looking at you, Kumamoto) is what bothers me...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Kumamon is staying because it has helped tourism in southern Kyushu tremendously and is still a huge moneymaker in terms of licensed merchandising.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Spending public money on these mascots that bring a little happiness to many is much better than wasting on that fascicle whale research in the southern oceans.

It is true that the government should refrain from spending money on things that do not support core government functions - like whale "research." At the rate things are going it will not be long before the population of mascots will exceed the population of children to enjoy them. Besides it's not as if there is a shortage of 'cute' in Japan to bring happiness to the populace. Even government instructions on recycling are filled with cute characters. There are a surprising number of publications of all sorts that are manga-like.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Farmboy

I wonder how mascots will be evaluated. Will they have to take a test? ... Maybe they could run a "Japanese Idol" contest on TV and have people vote out the mascots they don't recognize.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Good. I loathe them.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They don't dare get rid of Funasshi, or else that crazy lawyer lady on TV might just off herself!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The mascots should be escorted to the chopping block by the wasteful bureaucrats and politicians who though a cute public service is somehow an effective one.

Well, they aren't necessarly that wasteful an idea. The Kumamon and Funashi characters are still raking in a staggering amount of extra revenue for their respective local governments due to their enduing popularity. So, clearly, these characeters do their appointed job in some cases.

In the Japanese world of mascots and "image" characters, lightning only has to strike once to see a success. Each government organization took it's chances, rolled the die, and waited to see if they won. And in any game of chance, particularly one as fickle as the Japanese public's reception of "cute" characters, there are bound to be both winners and losers. This retirement of unsuccessful characters isn't an indictment of the idea. It's simply the natural progression of an business idea that didn't catch on as well as others.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

A 'chopping' of the mascots?

Sounds like a horror flick....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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