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Japan ignored own radiation forecasts from very beginning

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By Eric Talmadge

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Jail, jail, jail.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Oh and "don’t have the resources and are instead focusing on groups, such as pregnant women, from the general area."...after 5 months???

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Wow and this is just making news now! How many people on JT have been critisised from the outset of this mess for voicing this very opinion and now 5 months later it makes news. Now that really inspires confidence in the clowns running this circus called Japan. As the article says "Kan had no idea" I would argue he still has no fn idea. Infact no Japanese politician has much of an idea when it comes to this situation.

Its funny though that since the story about government censorship of the nuclear disaster came out the bad news stories from Fukushima have dried up. Either they are getting on top of things (HAHAHAHAHA) or they arnt being reported as much (more likely)

6 ( +7 / -2 )

Absolutely disgusting. By the way, the French radioprotection agency published its own forecasts on Internet from the beginning of the crisis (including dose estimation and wind patterns). Apparently, for the first few days, they couldn't even get in contact with their Japanese counterparts as there was a complete information lockdown in Japan.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Criminal on the Japanese governments part, the nuclear safety board didn't even understand the data, just goes to show it was a propaganda board. People MUST be fired over this, organisations must be sued, people need to get angry about this and sweep the government and their cronies away

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Wow, I mean seriously. This is beyond frightening. I'm sure they were in chaos at that time, but this is unacceptable. A perfectly working technology meant to save innocent people rendered useless by utterly incompetent people. They actually took part in training drills and still failed on such a high level. I really hope some heads fly over this. Dogeza on hot coal is the absolute minimum starting acceptable apology.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

You don't even need SPEEDI to understand that you should get people out of the area downwind from a nuclear accident. That is just common sense, especially if you are planning on venting gases.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Squidbert,

Only one problem with your theory no one in the Japanese government or TEPCO has enough brain power let alone any common sense.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Bungling and imcompetence are two things japanese excell at and this is a perfect example.

Lack of responsibilty is also rampant and it makes it very hard to have any faith in the Japanese or their systems.

It doesnt surprise me that their incompetence and bungling put these people at risk and I bet that this is not the only occasion related to the nuclear disaster.

We are all still at great risk of the bumbling numbskulls who run this country.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I agree with SquidB, before you release radioactivity, get everyone the (inappropriate term) out of there. Don't need SPEEDI to tell you that.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Haruki "Detarame" Madarame should be falling on his sword, instead of Kan resigning. From his dubious industry sponsored academic career researching promotion of nuclear power to society to his chairmanship of the Nuclear Safety Commission, he has failed the Japanese people totally. I can't really expect a PM to know and remember every small detail of running a country or a crisis management team, but I do expect his specialist advisors to know them.

The utilities attitude to never consider nuclear emergencies, to resist research into robots to assist, and propagating the myth that nuclear power is safe; whilst covering up manufacturing defects, falsifying inspections, and utilising the lower ranks of society for its dirty work also contributed to the problem.

But the Japanese people at the end of the day put these people into positions of power, allowed themselves to be hoodwinked and lied to, as they also took the utilities' money and turned a blind eye to all of this. They should be asking themselves a few serious questions too...

6 ( +6 / -1 )

The Japanese government officials and TEPCO execs responsible must be directly put to work helping in Fukushima Daiichi cleaning up this mess. Why, why must regular folks with no responsibility for this disaster be forced to die while the rich fat cats who caused this problem (by means of neglect and improper risk analysis) and did not respond in a responsible manner sit far away posturing and eating expensive foreign foods.

Get them out of their rich homes and put them on site at Daiichi to WORK! This will show the world how people of this nature are dealt with.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I am opposed to jail for these people as it costs tax payer $$. Make them work to at Fukushima Daiichi plant to clean up.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Can anyone with even a few years experience in this country honestly be surprised? When faced with crisis, Japanese leaders or those in power have done the same thing time after time after time; freeze in panic.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Does the author believe that radiation blows on the wind?

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Oracle

Does the author believe that radiation blows on the wind?

HUH. Do you think that the particles that are contaminated dont?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

for 20yrs I have been praying for instituting common sense on the masses here, but once again we have another example of incredibly brutal incompetence on a massive scale, but not only are they stealing from us, lieing to us, they are now going to be shortening the lives of many people, thiis is colossal negligence.

But like minimata, etc etc no one will likely even have a few months salary cut.........wtf are these idiots going to do to us next

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Is there anything to do but laugh? This is just a reflection of the saving face is more important than protecting people attitude that plagues Japan and the society here. Just imagine what will happen when the big Tokai earthquake hits? Japan and its citizens must remove their heads from the sand, or wherever they have it currently buried, and understand that this culture has to get flushed if they are to survive into the future. Or it may just be that my Japanese friend Tai is right when he says that Japan is overpopulated and the sooner that the population is reduced to no more than 75 million, the better. If that is the case, then I guess we just have to sit back and watch the carnage!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Does anyone else find the name SPEEDI a bit ironic?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@ted barrera - SPEEDI did the job it was required to do quickly and effectively - but was ignored and misunderstood.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Speechless at this incompetence and wilful negligence. And now comes the stonewalling. No plans to test those whom the evidence suggests have been significantly contaminated, opting instead for GENERAL testing of people in the area, (sound familiar to us beef eaters?), an insistence that the data would have been useless anyway (so why spend all that money on the system in the first place?) and denial of any proven link to cancers in the years to come. Dirtbags with no moral conscience.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

What wanderlust says. And otherwise, I totally agree with wanderlust. It seems, that even people responsible for specialized technologies do not have the necessary scientific education (or people who received such) at hand to draw the necessary conclusions from data available.

This. Is. Embarrassing.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

hatsoff,

The reason they wont test those who got hit with the venting is because then there would be records & the govt would be setting itself up for liability down the road, so they ignore them & 10-30yrs later when people are getting cancer etc, dieing they can say there is no connection, what we are seeing is the govt/beaurocracy in CYA mode covering their you know whats, they are VERY good at that!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

“When I think about it now, I am outraged,” Principal Hidenori Arakawa said. “Our lives were put at risk.”

You know what i find outrageous....how utterly clueless and downright stupid people are. You're 10 km away from a nuclear disaster and it doesn't occur to you to evacuate. Instead you wait for the even more useless and pathetic bureaucrats to get their act together and "request" that you leave. Even now with all the news of leaked radioactive waste people are still too close to the danger zone.

The best thing Japan could do is give up its' sovereignty and allow another country to run things. God knows the Japanese can't.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

its all about money and those that have it can bully the rest of us

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This happens when people with power have as first and utmost aim to hold on to power, and totally secondary aim, serve the people. I start to learn about Japanese politics, but maybe from a biased source. From what I learned, the government is the hands of the kanryo, the "elite bureaucrats" of Japan, mostly from Tokyo University. Their single neuron is programmed to keep their job, above all, no matter what. Under these constraints, I pity the people of this wonderful country, you are in the hands of ultra-selfish ego-centered demi-gods, and from what I've learned, there's nothing you could do to change it, except of course, a revolution.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Did you guys know that way back in history, before Edo period, children were regarded as "third class citizens"? Even lower than women that were "second class citizens" Their lives were dispensable. (if I made mistake, please someone correct my grammar!)

Nowadays this "culture" seems to remain among these corrupted/nasty bureaucrats from this Feudal dirty government. For them, money is way more important than saving the lives of the children in Fukushima. As long as they can save some YEN, who cares if a few thousand babies and children die?!?! who cares?!!

I wish I was physically strong enough to carry a toxic waste barrel and throw it at them in front of the Diet Parliament. They deserve no better. Scum of Earth, that's what they are.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

"None of us knew."

I believe this is the same phrase Germans used when the Nazi concentration camps were "discovered".

I can imagine a low-level government employee getting the info from SPEEDI, hanko-ing it, and sending it off to the next person for their hanko without anyone actually reading it or, if they read it, consider its importance. People are the key to any 'system' and if they are poorly educated in the THINKING department, the system, like SPEEDI, will fail.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Seriously, is anyone actually surprised by this? Everybody knew there had been huge media censorship and of course you would expect the details of the severity to also be censored from all agencies.. However, anybody expecting heads to roll over this is experiencing a pipedream cos it will all be forgotten very quickly, except by the tend of thousands of locals that were exposed to possibly lethal doses of radiation, of course.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The only people that would be surprised by this are Japanese, and that's only if the media reports it (which it likely won't). Even then they'll looked for ways to be praised or victimized before they acknowledge any fault.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

“I had no idea what sort of information was available,”

Who's fault is that? Seriously, if things don't change soon the language will; there will at least be a new term added to the dictionary called a "Japanese apology".

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It has become clear to me over the last few months that sadly, to survive here let alone have a nice life you have to become as selfish as these government bureaucrats and look out for number 1 first, because you sure as hell cant trust anyone in authority to do it for you. My J husband has been so torn between his natural instincts to trust anyone in authority and his more recently cultivated and still work-in-progress instinct to trust foreign-wifey. But I cant count the number of times recently he has thanked is lucky stars for having access to non-Japanese info.

I was just laughing at the post someone above made that the French had better and more timely data posted than the Japanese. I remember years ago slumbering through my French classes and wondering why on earth I had opted to do A level French for anyway with Miss Price, the worst "cockney" French accent you ever heard. Then I even did uni courses in French too. The Gods obviously had a plan for me because I found that data when it was all kicking off and used a lot of it to make decisions around what we should do. Instinctively I KNEW that one day that French would be useful - but not how I ever imagined (just thought I would one day nail a French guy I guess!!!)

I think the biggest lesson for us all (as if we needed confirmation) is that this is a wonderful country, choc-full of fabulous people, run by a total bunch of moronic incomptents. How we each individually now handle that data is up to us but as my dear friend said to me just last night at our little soiree "You are so lucky being foreign, you dont have to suck up and live with this BS". Shes right, to an extent.

(ps: sorry if this makes little sense, treating myself to a little beer or two tonight. I earned it!

7 ( +8 / -1 )

So, everybody who left japan and/or went to Osaka was smart.

I`m very sorry for the people of Fukushima and other citieswith hot spot areas.

Money / or compensation is not enough. Pretty soon a year or two you will see a rise in health problems around Fukushima and etc.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

You know what i find outrageous....how utterly clueless and downright stupid people are. You're 10 km away from a nuclear disaster and it doesn't occur to you to evacuate.

I don't find that outrageous at all. People rely on the government for reliable and timely information to make decisions. People have lives and homes, they can't just evacuate if they are being told it's safe. They know there is a warning system in place - anyone who has lived near a plant knows this. How can this man be faulted for expecting the warning system - paid for and functioning - to be used if necessary?

There's no fault to be had but for TEPCO and the bureaucrats that made the awful decisions to not release the prediction data once they had it.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

SPEEDI was working from the moment its nuclear crisis began. As officials planned a venting operation certain to release radioactivity into the air, the system predicted Karino Elementary School would be directly in the path of the plume emerging

Then they turned SPEEDI off, like that would change anything.

Here is the Proof [http://bit.ly/mTiWOZ]

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Kan had no idea

Yes he did. And if you read the Asahi newspaper in Japanese on a regular basis, then you would know this.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

An accident is an unforseen unplanned occurance, claiming ignorance due to the failure to request information at every stage of dealing with a situation is downright negligence. Japanese people live in a democracy so is it time to replace the Diet with polititions who dont have cotton wool between thier ears?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Like Spidapig24 wrote above, so many JT posters criticized with smug 'scientific' arrogance anyone who suggested the contents of this news report way back in April and May. Where is smorkian, zenny11, klein2, nigelboy, forinagai and the like now?

It turns out it was worse than was reported, and it was played down by the government and information was withheld from the public.

Dr. Kodama from the dept of Radioisotopes at Tokyo University also claims it is much worse than Chernobyl. He also claims that the amount of cesium found in women's breast milk in Chiba is an 'alarming' level. These points were vehemently argued against on this very discussion forum by these posters.

Check Dr. Kodama's presentation here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dlf4gOvzxYc -- click on 'cc' for English subtitles.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

just like I have been saying all along.The folks that are surprised by this might want to get the sand out of their ears. Just like the meat traceability system has been in place since the BSE outbreak and has been ignored or not used, and the rice traceability system has been in place since Mikasa foods incident and.. it just isn't expedient to be expedient in Japan. The big media is in bed with Tepco,is in bed with METI is in bed with MEXT, is in bed with the ministry of Agriculture, is in bed with the ministry of fisheries, is in bed with the ministry of finance,is in bed with the banks...this is the ugly lovechild. Most people here could be slapped in the face with a radioactive Fukushima fish and would still go back to watching TV and drinking up the wine of Ï didn't know".. For a country that adores Spring, a real 'Spring"is well overdue in Japan.Let one hundred flowers bloom.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Sorry, got to ask.

Who the FRAK is "Eric Talmadge" and who/what gives him special access to information that serious news sources don't have? Who does he work for, etc?

Sorry, too many people get worked up about "opinion pieces" that are NOT verified(does he cite credible sources and provide links) that is pure tabloid crap catering to the crowd.

Moderator: Mr Talmadge works for the Associated Press, which is certainly a serious news source. Please post something more pertinent to the story.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@Nicky Washida. I really like your post. And I can identify with being married to a Japanese who is finally having to admit the shortcomings of the way Japan is run.

I agree totally too about how this is a great country with great people - the leaders are the ones that fail them.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

So when they start singing "1000 cranes" in a few weeks and children are dying, whom are they going to blame it on this time? It'll be no less the tragedy, but won't appear on stage as the government is responsible this time and not some foreign enemy.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

the government is responsible this time and not some foreign enemy.

If you think that the business community has influence, then you might remember the dates of March 11 - 15, when GE executive as well as a host of American "nuclear experts" appeared on CNN and other prominent networks and vowed that it was not a meltdown, nor would the radioactive elements spread beyond a small radius.

If anything, the Japanese government is not at fault, but the American business community has the early deaths of many children dripping from their Goldman Sachs accounts.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

They did their best, and messed up. Made me sick to my stomach

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Criminal negligence is the minimum charge against Kan and his staff, and the supporting bureaucrats.

If Kan went to see SPEEDI get used, and he claims he does not understand it, so what was he doing that day, was he drunk or just plain ignorant. If the PM can't understand a system like SPEEDI and isn't intelligent enough to ask some simple questions then get rid of the useless, careless idiot. He should repay Japan for all of the salary and benefits paid to him.

I mourn for the innocent people who trusted the government and stayed in Harm's Way after the Fukushima disaster took place.

Stop all of the posturing and excuses... GET TO THE TRUTH!!! NOW!!!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Who the FRAK is "Eric Talmadge" and who/what gives him special access to information that serious news sources don't have? Who does he work for, etc?

He's an AP writer - that's about as serious a news source as there is. The same story is repeated in other global news outlets....

0 ( +3 / -3 )

He's an AP writer - that's about as serious a news source as there is. The same story is repeated in other global news outlets....

I am sure he is a great intellect, but he has his facts mixed up on this story.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

“When I think about it now, I am outraged,” Principal Hidenori Arakawa said. “Our lives were put at risk.” This guy took the words right out of my mouth! Stupid, stupid Japanese government!!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Stupid, stupid Japanese government!!

This kind of a comment can pass? With what basis? Let's start from 3/12: Not even the most anti-nuclear groups thought that the original 10km radius was inadequate. Nor did any responsible group claim that different countermeasures be taken. After that there were a number of mis calculations --and give Kan credit for his work -- he threw out the trash and has continually tried to get to the bottom of the mess. He and Kaieda have taken huge risks to keep Japan safe.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

I still think it may be worse when the American military was told to "stand-down" or turn off their radiation monitors (aircraft etc). -But at least they took the info and got the hell out of there 200km if I remember and many military personal were sent home.

Either way, both failed the Japanese people. -Sameful, and all the Japanese politicans and American military should bow-down and resign. You have failed to protect the people you have sworn to serve. If I see you on the street -expect me to turn my back to you.

Samething happened on the WestCoast US however. -Obama turned off the radiation warning system or said they were being serviced. -This is an online system that anyone can see. Shameful conduct by the Supreme Dictator.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I still think it may be worse when the American military was told to "stand-down" or turn off their radiation monitors (aircraft etc).

You are right, from what I have read, it was Kan who rejected American help (really needed) at the start.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Please point out where you disagree with the writer. That is the purpose of the discussion board.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@ Nicky Washida

Did you come across this info.: Accident de la centrale de Fukushima Daiichi : Modélisation de la dispersion des rejets radioactifs dans l’atmosphère à l’échelle mondiale - Version du 8 avril 2011

http://www.irsn.fr/FR/popup/Pages/irsn-meteo-france_Film-Global_8avril.aspx

I still say SPEEDI was turned off after it's projections of the hydorgen explosions, because there is NO information from SPEEDI. If there was information Hot Spots would have been detected Months ago especially in the agricultural areas and fallout projections would have been known and yet Hotspots discovery are happening blindly right now.

Hot spots as far away as Tochigi which would have been known if SPEEDI was in use.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

bluesafetypin: " Not even the most anti-nuclear groups thought that the original 10km radius was inadequate."

Really? The US suggested an 80 km evacuation radius almost immediately, to which the sad little Japanese government tried to stand up and say, "There is no harm to humans"... or at least Edano said something like that 100 times or so until he had to admit there is actual danger. No Japan is starting to suddenly 'find' new hotspots and acknowledge that certain places should have been evacuated earlier, all the while they promised to be transparent so long as foreign nations continued to import irradiated food and while they continued to ship it domestically.

If you have the stats to back up your claim, though, feel free.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@yasukuni - thanks, and back at you too!

@utrack - thanks for the link, Ill check it out.

It all started when the French people I knew hotfooted it out of here, and I wondered what they knew that we didnt, so I checked out some French news sites, followed some links to various places, both scientific and governmental (cant for the life of me tell you what they were now) and went from there. Coupled with English data and some stuff that apparently came out of some computer modelling in Austria we based decisions on that, and ignored a lot of what was coming out of Japan.

I feel so sorry for these people who took a direct hit from the plume and had no idea. I get that people might think why didnt they get out by themselves, but they trusted that those in authority would keep them safe. Whether that makes them ignorant or not is highly debatable - this is a culture where authority is automatically trusted and respected, so it must be a terrible blow to them to find everything they believed in was false, and parents must be cursing themselves for not taking responsibility for their children into their own hands.

I actually feel quite sorry for Kan. He seems like a decent guy but with his hands tied by the political system.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

In twenty years the government will say how 'regrettable' it was that the government denied knowledge that could have saved lives. Evidently the Japanese government never learns. Minamoto all over again.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Over fifty comments and not a one from Zenny11 or WiiliB or the other posters who rant against the folks who said from Day 1 not to trust the information coming from TEPCO or the government and to make decisions accordingly. But the bigger question, IMO, is what would they have done if this model was showing the radiation heading south/southwest, towards Tokyo? Would they have had the courage/moral backbone to do the right thing, or would thye have willingly endangered the lives of millions of people? Scary to potentially think that it was which way the wind was blowing, that allowed them to avoid making the right decision.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I'm baffled, why would you invest 10 billion dollars into a crisis management system, then ignore it when the crisis occurs and claim it was useless anyways. People bring up pride, but how can it be pride, are they proud of the fact they needlessly exposed people to radiation when they invested 10 billions dollars just to reduce the risk? What could they benefit from not using it, please enlighten me. Lets say more than half the funds were embezzled, so what? the system is still there, USE IT FFS...

If pride was ever involved, then someone would actually do something about this bs. I maybe overboard, but i certainly wouldn't be proud to be japanese if I was.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Spidapig24Aug. 10, 2011 - 04:30PM JST

HUH. Do you think that the particles that are contaminated dont?

Thank you for clearly demonstrating that you don't understand what is happening either.

Contaminated particles? Did you make that up on the spot, or have you been saying this for a while?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

smithinjapan

If you have the stats to back up your claim, though, feel free. (in regards to the claim of the original 10km radius)

You are right. In fact, France evacuated their citizens, and the US military did everything possible to do objective testing and the Japanese government protested. I won't forget the indignation on Asahi Super Morning at the audacity of the Americans to test for radioactive elements in the air. Audacious Americans, and they were right!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Badsey -

Samething happened on the WestCoast US however. -Obama turned off the radiation warning system or said they were being serviced.

Sorry --- I just couldn't let that one slip by. Do you have any credible source to back that? It sounded implausible, so I gave it a quick search and couldn't find anything resembling Obama turning off the radiation warning system.

Nicky Washida -

I actually feel quite sorry for Kan. He seems like a decent guy but with his hands tied by the political system.

I feel the same way. I don't know how politically accurate I am about that. I like him and feel bad for him, but he does seem like a guy who's not really qualified to be where he is. It's like a good guy in a wrong job.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I feel the same way. I don't know how politically accurate I am about that. I like him and feel bad for him, but he does seem like a guy who's not really qualified to be where he is. It's like a good guy in a wrong job.

Though, would you not call his countermeasures, like the new tests for nuclear plants (against huge resistance) real leadership?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Bluesafetypin,

This kind of a comment can pass? With what basis? Let's start from 3/12: Not even the most anti-nuclear groups thought that the original 10km radius was inadequate. Nor did any responsible group claim that different countermeasures be taken.

If you're going to start at 3/12, you're right. Only hours after the tsunami, 90% of the world didn't even KNOW there was a problem at the Daiichi plant. Let's step on ahead to only five days later when the evacuation zone had already been increased to 20km by the Japanese Government:

MARCH 17 2011: Letter from the U.S. Ambassador to Japan, John Roos, to all American Citizens in Japan

The United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), the Department of Energy and other technical experts in the U.S. Government have reviewed the scientific and technical information they have collected from assets in country, as well as what the Government of Japan has disseminated, in response to the deteriorating situation at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant. Consistent with the NRC guidelines that apply to such a situation in the United States, we are recommending, as a precaution, that American citizens who live within 50 miles (80 kilometers) of the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant evacuate the area or to take shelter indoors if safe evacuation is not practical.

Only five days after your "start" date, when actual information started to be collected, the United States (which certainly could be called a "pro-nuclear country") called Japan's evacuation zone inadequate by a factor of FOUR.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Only five days after your "start" date, when actual information started to be collected, the United States (which certainly could be called a "pro-nuclear country") called Japan's evacuation zone inadequate by a factor of FOUR.

You know, I think your version of history can not be disputed. I am trying to think of an answer in defense of the Japanese government . . . it is coming . . .. no, it is coming , just you wait!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The Japanese government has become so much alike the government in the US, where they try to accomplish the task of governing by talking. A sign of a bankrupt government, both fiscally and morally.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The Japanese government has become so much alike the government in the US, where they try to accomplish the task of governing by talking.

ReallY? what do they say? It just seems like nostril snorts to me. Saying that, did you see Kaieda the other day, he broke down crying. He is a beautiful man, I'd blow him.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

smithinjapanAug. 10, 2011 - 10:21PM JST

In twenty years the government will say how 'regrettable' it was that the government denied knowledge that could have saved lives. Evidently the Japanese government never learns. Minamoto all over again.

I like your tone, but the Japanese government has learned quite well. Its the people who never learn. They always allow themselves to be bamboozled by political maneuvering. They keep taking their eyes off the ball, and they always let accountablity slide. Japanese politicians and business leaders are carefree, knowing that the Japanese will always remain mostly calm and complacent, no matter what horrible things are done to them. If there are some emotions, someone will make a show of bowing, that someone will get a new job or an emergency golden parachute, and that will be that. If not, and there are actually some court cases, there again, the same old pattern. The lower court will side with sense and fairness. Everybody goes home. Then it goes to appeals, and the higher court turns it around 180 degrees and the leaders have the last laugh.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Now we know. The French were right. I read a better version of this article in the NYT yesterday. I feel very sorry for all the people in Fukushima.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Oracle: "Its the people who never learn. They always allow themselves to be bamboozled by political maneuvering. "

Agree with you to an extent, but keep in mind the sheeple cannot directly vote for their PM, they have to vote for the local representative. In most cases, that means a choice between moron A and moron B, with nothing in-between. The absolute proof of what you say came out yesterday, when all those polled that said Kan should go couldn't think of a good example of who should be next.

The more I think about it, while the rationale for why Ishihara said it was wrong, the more I think he was correct in that Japan brought this nuclear disaster on itself.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

smithinjapan

do you not think (if you think that nuclear is bad for japan) that Kan is not a great leader in these times?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

WTF !!!!!! who are this people suppose to protect us. Problems of communications? Did not reach the top officials of Japan? That's plain BS. During Edo era. they run by foot to bring the news to the emperor. Tsk..tsk..tsk.. you need a complete revamp of the LDP, DPJ and all the rest of the political parties elected.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Article states: Even so, according to the prime minister’s office, Kan and his top advisers never asked for or received the data. Despite taking part in the Hamaoka drill, Kan admitted he didn’t understand how SPEEDI worked or how valuable the data was. "I had no idea what sort of information was available,” he told Parliament on June 17. “I didn’t know anything about it then, and there was no way I could make a judgment.”

"I had no idea"?? Utter nonsense. No excuse is good enough. It's time for Kan to resign. He has a hearing problem. Where is your chain of command during the emergency? Where does civilians turn to when you cannot depend on incompetent J-goverment?

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@ Disillusioned Execellent point: Seriously, is anyone actually surprised by this? Everybody knew there had been huge media censorship and of course you would expect the details of the severity to also be censored from all agencies.. However, anybody expecting heads to roll over this is experiencing a pipedream cos it will all be forgotten very quickly, except by the tend of thousands of locals that were exposed to possibly lethal doses of radiation, of course

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Daiichi's plumes went GLOBAL we all got hit to some degree or other, of course the worse hit were at ground zero. All of Japan has traces from Daiichi and the radiation / plumes leaving Daiichi were NOT traced as an ongoing event period.

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Thats it, I have a ticket out. My family will follow, lies and lies enough. 10 years I pay tax and expect the basic care-they do this! There is nothing positive to say about this I hate you Japan if you sink into to the sea you deserve it. DOGS

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bluesafetypin: "do you not think (if you think that nuclear is bad for japan) that Kan is not a great leader in these times?"

No. Until now I thought he was relatively honest and hard-working, as opposed to his predecessors, but to let this happen has confirmed that he is wrong for the job beyond a doubt. Again, though, who's to replace him? Japan has NO good politicians, and no qualifications to become one, either. Kan saying he "had no idea" is an absurd excuse -- it's his job to know. So either he is lying or he is inept.

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Good Journey Cricky, I'd be doing the same if I were there the J Govt is playing mind games with the population and ain't nothing funny.

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this is a wonderful country, choc-full of fabulous people, run by a total bunch of moronic incompetents

Totally agree.

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Even so, according to the prime minister’s office, Kan and his top advisers never asked for or received the data.

OMG! WTF! Did anyone in the government do something right during this disaster? Screw up after screw up. Appalling!

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It seems to me that the Japanese are starting to wake up and see what is really going on here, and are getting more and more nervous.

Just yesterday I had to ask a woman in the supermarket the kanji for where the onions had come from - it was one i couldnt read. Bless her, she said it was a ken in Kyushu, so no worries, patted me on the arm, smiled and said something along the lines of "We are all in it together, ne?!" Further on another Mother was scruitinising chicken, beef and pork packets to find something not from Japan and muttering under her breath "Chiba dame desu ne" (which was news to me and makes me wonder what she knows that dont!).

Then today in the park I was filling a little bag with some sand from the ground to put into my daughters diorama of an aquarium for her summer project - two women came rushing over and asked me if i was taking soil samples for testing and if so, could I let them know the results!!!

I feel so sorry for people here. It must be a terrible blow to find something you have always believed in ( ie trust in authority) is not actually true.

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Two videos everyone should watch. First, Madarame the idiot who is mentioned in this article.He now heads Japan's Nuclear Safety Council..it gives you an idea of the absolute loons that are running the show here.This 5 years ago gives a great insight into the cavalier attitude of Nuclear power utilities here.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XL_rWzytQWw

second, two IRATE Japanese Journalists that have filed criminal charges against 32 people including TEPCO management, Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, and Fukushima's Radiation Health Risk Advisors including Shunichi Yamashita.These guys deserve support and a wider audience.Not everyone in Japan is being docile. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt1p-tftdaU

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this is a wonderful country, choc-full of fabulous people, run by a total bunch of moronic incompetents

Disagree. People get the governments they deserve. If this country is run by a bunch of "moronic incompetents" it is because these "fabulous" people felt they deserved positions of authority. And have done nothing to try to change the system, because it is easier to just shrug and say "shonanai" as you shuffle off to the izakaya for your nightly drinking and eating session.

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"Unfortunately, you can't vote the rascals out, because you never voted them in, in the first place." Noam Chomsky.

In any case, I suppose voting rights for non-Japanese and permanent residence holders are a moot point now.

The "moronic incompetants" are being willfully negligent for good reason. If they were to put up the money and resources to investigate, measure and decontaminate they will be providing evidence against themselves for lawsuits and requests for compensation. By not doing so, they save time, money and effort that would otherwise go towards attempting to save the infrastructure they have invested so much money in just like all well functioning corporations are inclined to do.

NISA as hand puppet of the electricity industry is no accident. There is a lot of money involved in order to create and maintain the government entities to allow free reign by industry. Do not for a second that these people are dumb. They know exactly what they were doing and how to go about doing it. They craft their reports and statements for the desired effect from the majority of the populace of which the 0.5% of the non-Japanese population is not a part of (well, except for the die-hard apologists).

In the meantime, stall, stall and stall some more. They will set themselves up to allow for plausible deniability. If any future cancer cases occur, you can be sure that they are banking on it being difficult to prove in court that the cause was a direct effect from the accident at Fukushima.

In the meantime, don't worry too much and go back to work, paying taxes and consuming. It's all about maintaining the 'wa'.

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@Osakadaz

Two videos everyone should watch. First, Madarame the idiot who is mentioned in this article.He now heads Japan's Nuclear Safety Council..it gives you an idea of the absolute loons that are running the show here.This 5 years ago gives a great insight into the cavalier attitude of Nuclear power utilities here.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XL_rWzytQWw

second, two IRATE Japanese Journalists that have filed criminal charges against 32 people including TEPCO management, Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, and Fukushima's Radiation Health Risk Advisors including Shunichi Yamashita.These guys deserve support and a wider audience.Not everyone in Japan is being docile. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt1p-tftdaU

Just finished watching both videos. It makes me feel sick to my stomach. Urrgh!! -_-;;

ps, saved them for my husband to watch once he's back from work~

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@bluewitch

I agree...Madarame....that smiling otaku....did you notice his tail and horns?

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so disapointed with how it was runed.. radiation is nothing to mess with, you must always take the highest level of concern and worry. Take the actions nessacery and evact the area's that you think are inbfected.. and then Evacuate another 30+ miles. Shameful how this ended up, people going to live their lives with radiation poisoning and Cancer? Japan just gave its own people a death sentance for now being papred and having the right people do the right job..

People should be fired, companies should be sued.. Shame on the Goverment for not protecting its people like its sapost to. Dishonerable and disgraceful.

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