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Shizuoka governor to resign after gaffe insulting vegetable sellers

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 civil servants being inducted into the prefectural government were intelligent people, "unlike those who sell vegetables."

It's not only a gaffe, it's a lie and not true.

27 ( +37 / -10 )

More than likely, he has accepted an enormous bribe from JR over the 'Linear Problem' and wants to step out of the spotlight...

-3 ( +21 / -24 )

Typical "elitist". With thinly masked condescension and contempt for the masses. Which sometimes comes out for all to see.

34 ( +41 / -7 )

" unlike those who sell vegetables, take care of cows or create things."

please, tell us how you really feel about us commoners...

29 ( +37 / -8 )

@3RENSHO

Took the words right out of my mouth.

A turnip for the books.

5 ( +15 / -10 )

Gotta agree with 3rensho...no way any politician, here or elsewhere, resigns over such a gaffe. The more to it part of the story is JR....how exactly... Tired of fighting, bribe....etc....time may tell, but really, someone should be asking the question... Like the writer of the article...

2 ( +13 / -11 )

While his gaffes are stupid and ignorant, I agree with the posters above that this in more likely to do with JR and the Maglev train. Either a bribe, or a threat, either way, hopefully they will find a good farmer or vegetable seller to take over!

9 ( +16 / -7 )

The brown envelope incited the reason for resignation…

-4 ( +10 / -14 )

So the governor of Shizuoka thinks he’s a better person than vegetable vendors. He should hand in his resignation immediately rather than wait until June when he will receive his bonus for the first half year.

17 ( +20 / -3 )

Never insult farmers, vegetable and fruit producers. They feed you.

31 ( +31 / -0 )

Japan’s politically correct mob is as bad as the US.

-8 ( +10 / -18 )

Horrible rude man.

18 ( +22 / -4 )

unlike those who sell vegetables, take care of cows or create things."

The above group add value to society, unlike most bureaucrats and politicians, plus vegetable growers, cow-tenders, and those that create things usually pay more in taxes which allow pols and paper pushers to be housed, fed and clothed. Stupid thing for Kawakatsu to have said, but probably indicative of how he and others in his cohort have bifurcated the population, typical us v. them nature of class-based systems.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

He's been bribed out of the way for that silly maglev.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Kawakatsu had said during the address that "everyone here is a brainy and intelligent person, unlike those who sell vegetables, take care of cows or create things."

He also told the incoming civil servants to remain honest, watch their language, and that it was "important to be compassionate and stick to your beliefs."

So according to the immense intellect of Kawakatsu; those who create are inferior to the administrators of a kleptocratic bureaucratic regime.

No wonder the LDP/Japan Inc. combine is moribund and just an acquisitive drain on the population.

12 ( +15 / -3 )

Gov Kawakatsu is my kind of man. Make Japan Great Again! /s seriously, though, there are many civil servants who retire to lives of growing and selling produce. I did for ten years after I retired from central government work. Now, in my doddering age, I have come back to work for the city government for a few years. I still grow vegetables and work my field after work and on Saturday. It is a way to meet all the neighbors walking by and keep in touch with grass-routes opinions and goings on. Sorry for the common people of Shizuoka, though. I am sure the gov'nor is not the only person who feels like this.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Another great example of classism from the "elite".

12 ( +12 / -0 )

He'll just be reshuffled into another goverment position. Nothing really changes.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

His skin on his face looks sallow....recommend eating more vegetables

11 ( +11 / -0 )

If want to see what is wrong with Japan as a whole, look immediately to the governor’s left. I don’t know how much intelligence it takes to hold a clipboard and look concerned but I do know it takes a whole bunch of taxes (money that comes from you and me) to pay for these people who add little to no value to our lives. Give me farmers and creators anytime!

4 ( +7 / -3 )

He sounds like the only vegetable.

Farmers and vegetable sellers are part of a vital chain.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

It does not reflect well on the people of Shizuoka that this fool was Govermor for 15 years.

In my experience vegetable sellers. farmers and those who create things are smarter, friendlier and more efficient than most prefectural officers.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

civil servants being inducted into the prefectural government were intelligent people, "unlike those who sell vegetables."

By his own words, he has actually proved the opposite.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Perhaps it’s more Tatemae than Hone.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Maybe it was an attempt at tongue in cheek humour by the Governor. Something the natives lack somewhat.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Expect his replacement to do a 180 degree turn on groundwater issues in the Ikawa area, with a new finding/ research paper to support the position, and a subsequent go-ahead with the linear shinkansen, all 8.6 km that traverse Northern Shizuoka.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

He also told the incoming civil servants to remain honest, watch their language, and that it was "important to be compassionate...

A classic "do as I say, not as I do" situation. There was not compassionate one bit with this little gem.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

While its a stupid and insulting remark, as far as political scandals go this seems to be an incredibly minor thing for a governor to be resigning over.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Specifically targeting vegetable producers means he likely had a bad encounter before with an individual and is now throwing the entire industry under the bus by calling them stupid. If anything, I've seen more politicians and bureaucrats making stupid decisions all the time. My condolences goes towards the hard working vegetable produce workers, they don't need this sort of stupidity coming from a stupid man.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

“Call any vegetable and the chances are good . . . a vegetable will respond to you.”

. . . Frank Zappa

3 ( +3 / -0 )

My ancestors were farmers. They were far from stupid, as they needed multi-tasking skills to survive and thrive. Kawakatsu needs to do some back-breaking work on a farm for a while. If Kishida-san is reading this --it would be a good punishment for the LDP kickback scammers as well.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Political life hack: don’t call your constituents stupid in the course of defending public servants accused of corruption.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I found governmental workers particularly dumb "leech mentality" in Japan. Amazing how the dumbest of them all DARES compare them with vegetable growers - who at least are smart enough to live out of their own produce and are not wasting taxpayer money.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

So office type employees are smart but not creative people who make things.

Don't tell that to Steve Jobs, Elon Musk and many others.

Just because you sell vegetables does not mean you are not smart, just may not have had the opportunity or the financial help to do other things.

Be careful how you judge others, just judge yourself.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Prefectural officers are good at passing the many tests required to enter this "job for life". Many (not all) then just cruise for decades, doing 3/5ths of bugger-all.

This Governor is one of them.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Clearly, he's not competent enough to successfully sell vegetables. That's why he went into politics.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Japanese politicos don’t resign over private slush funds.This resignation is likely (as some posters have stated) to be the result of some ‘agreement’ to get out of the way…

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Japanese politicos don’t resign over private slush funds.This resignation is likely (as some posters have stated) to be the result of some ‘agreement’ to get out of the way…

Interesting conspiracy about which you have this theory...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I can’t be the only one who literally Laughed Out Loud reading such a foolish comment to made by this a politician. Wait a minute I’m American and our last president said this stuff all the time. LOL lighten up people.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

Last year after apologizing for a gaffe, he publicly promised to resign if he ever made a gaffe again.

He's just being held to account and following on his promise.

If he didn't he'd never survive the storm.

Good riddance.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The guy sounds foolish but must be very well connected to have stayed in the job so long.

Opposing the maglev is not foolish, it won't be his idea, and I hope the next governor does it as well.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

He shows great contempt for those who work in trades, do manual labor, and didn't go to college.

Very much like "progressives" in the U.S. and elsewhere in the West.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

He shows great contempt for those who work in trades, do manual labor, and didn't go to college.

You are making an assumption that people who create things, sell fruit and vegetables and farmers did not go to college.

Many have.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

People who work in trades - by definition - have studied at college. Many for four years.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

In all honesty, I respect farmers, people who take care of cows and make things than I do prefectural workers.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

this Japanese civil servant was a parasite, with nothing to do with selling vegetables in good faith.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

He shows great contempt for those who work in trades, do manual labor...

Considering that these parasite politicians have conned productive members of society into paying for their lavish lifestyles of doing nothing useful, it's no surprise that they hold us in contempt.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Civil servants are the most unproductive good for nothing pencil pushers.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I cold use another word, but pushers will do.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

it is a lapsus revealing the true mind of Civil servants

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

resign is too easy, he needs jail time for defamation and honor damages

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Japanese schools have "morality" lessons, which can involve the kids are given a situation and asked to interpret it from different perspectives.

This strikes me as perfect teaching material. The guy is trying to say something to the new recruits, but is kicking down on other people to make his point. He's had to resign, deservedly, and the reason is he chose to kick down on other people, including people he supposedly represents as governor. He could just have easily told recruits they would have to work hard and exert themselves because "their duty is to serve the public". There was no need to bring farmers into it and denegrate them in the process.

As a parallel, its now kind of trendy, possibly a women's magazine trope, to say "never marry anyone who is rude to or looks down on restaurant staff", i.e., how you treat restaurant staff is singled out as a meaningful test of your character. Looking down on people should not be accepted or encouraged.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Most of the time, the deep contempt for the masses is kept under wraps; empty platitudes and virtue signaling the order of the day. Every so often, however, the gears slip and in a moment of candour, we learn what the elites really think. The masses can at least console themselves that, although damned, they’re better off than you and I, forever consigned to a nether region beyond the pale.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

He shouldn’t have resigned from governorship for the minor gaffe he made about people engaged in primary industries. There must be something more serious than this for his decision to resign. 

And that is the linear motor train issue. If completed, the linear motor train can connect Tokyo and Osaka in one hour. But Shizuoka Gov. Heita Kawakatsu is the only governor who has been opposed to the construction of the railway that runs through his prefecture, saying the construction destroys mother nature and water resources.  

All other relevant prefectures have already sanctioned it.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Why are Japanese people in authority mostly elderly men? Is it a Japanese thing?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@Sapperjohn. You are either new in Japan. Or not living here.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@kohakuebisuToday 03:42 pm JST

Japanese schools have "morality" lessons, which can involve the kids are given a situation and asked to interpret it from different perspectives.

My answer would be that the guy should be allowed to say whatever he sincerely feels would best motivate the new recruits. The reality is that it's hard to motivate people by suggesting they are inferior to other people, such as using words like "serve".

What do you think of phrases like "You are better than that" as a motivator? When you say that you are denigrating whatever "that" is, but it is a well known motivational tack.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Let’s hope he gets pelted with some rotten vegetables now.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Classic superiority inferiority complex

Vegetables are extremely important

He's not !

4 ( +5 / -1 )

In most countries . . . it is not uncommon the food industry has to be subsidized by government in order to make sure people have healthy, fresh food . . . vegetable sellers, farmers, are part of this important industry . . . .

2 ( +3 / -1 )

And all he really wanted to say was: 花は桜木人は公務員.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Have him work on a farm for several months and let’s see who “unimportant” & “the smart ones”. We pay people like him w/ our tax dollars to look pretty.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Unbelievably disrespectful. I see people like this every day though.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Just let him eat pencil and papers instead of meat and veggies for the rest of his life.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Civil servants being inducted into the prefectural government were intelligent people, "unlike those who sell vegetables."...........Oh dear, poor little man, it is obvious he is not a man of intellect or high IQ, hence this very silly statement. I would send him a cucumber and tell him what to do with it, politely of course.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Years in academia contemplating his country’s navel and 15 years as a governor without a positive achievement. Some would call that an unproductive, wasted life.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

And suddenly, the maglev can once again be back to its original completion schedule!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

From The Japan Times: "Shizuoka governor's resignation may remove hurdle for maglev project" Apr 3, 2024

May remove? MAY REMOVE??? It is safe to bet your life that particular hurdle has been removed! This decision was made long ago and has been cast in concrete! There is no "may" about it, whatsoever. Kawakatsu, the pathetic actor (always to be seen on the evening news broadcast cutting a ribbon to open every flower show, festival and/or special meaningless event) is just performing his last swan song for the dumb, sheep-like proletariat...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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