Ah_so comments

Posted in: Yamaha Motor, ShinMaywa conduct early-stage test flight of small aircraft See in context

Small aircraft - whatever will they think of next?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese convenience store will now ask customers who ask for a fork to use chopsticks instead See in context

Up to 70 years to grow a tree for your wooden fork!

This nonsense was going around when I first arrived in Japan all those years ago. Softwood trees are quick growing cash crop. If they weren't grown, it would be for some other crop, like soya.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Putin's call-up fuels Russians' anger, protests and violence See in context

So 80% of Russians still support the defense of the country.

Sure. But how many are supporting the active invasion of another country?

14 ( +17 / -3 )

Posted in: Lights out, ovens off: Europe preps for winter energy crisis See in context

Really? China and India are buying record levels

Looks like India has almost stopped:

https://oilprice.com/Energy/Crude-Oil/Why-India-Is-Suddenly-Buying-Less-Russian-Crude.html

In September, Indian refiners are not expected to buy any ESPO crude from Russia because of the higher shipping rates, industry sources told Reuters on Thursday.  

"On net back basis after factoring in the freight, the landed cost of ESPO is turning out to be $5-$7 a barrel costlier in comparison to similar grades from other countries such as UAE's Murban," an Indian industry source with knowledge of the deals and prices told Reuters.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Posted in: Lights out, ovens off: Europe preps for winter energy crisis See in context

Meanwhile, in Russia gas bills, electricity bills and prices at the pump are at record lows.

Because they have no one to sell their oil to. The supply of foreign money has been turned off. Rather like the cold war as the USSR got poorer and poorer over the decades until it ran out of money.

7 ( +14 / -7 )

Posted in: Russia gives citizenship to ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden See in context

Now he's a citizen he can be conscripted and sent to Ukraine.

8 ( +19 / -11 )

Posted in: Mayweather easily beats MMA fighter Asakura in Japan exhibition See in context

Loved the guy who dissed Mayweather by throwing the flowers on the floor! Best action of the night.

Who is the creep gonna choose to "fight" next? A YouTuber? Tough Taxi Driver? Japanese schoolgirl kendo player?

Am both amused and saddened by your reaction to a Japanese guy getting beaten. But Mayweather is one of the all time great boxers and the best you can do is to call him a "creep".

It is not edifying.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Posted in: Stressed out, burned out and dropping out: Why U.S. teachers are leaving the classroom See in context

Many are refusing to comply with government vaccine mandates.

Although the 'pandemic is over', the mandates in some districts, persist.

Also, the curriculum being presented by teachers' unions, is not agreed upon by many teachers.

Critical race theory, along with perverse sexual material, unsuitable for elementary to middle schoolers, is also part of curriculum.

Many teachers do not want to participate in this, as it is inappropriate, and has little to do with the subjects they have spent years in preparation to teach.

Many are overburdened with the influx of illegals into the country, due to the open borders.

This is creating unnecessary stress, to an already difficult job.

After 2 plus years of staying home and teaching only remotely,

being able to teach in a classroom under normal conditions, would be welcomed...

But conditions are not normal, in this current climate.

These are absurd, and unevidenced claims, probably picked up from a current event focused fact-lite right-wing entertainment television network, or obscure parts of Reddit.

Teachers are badly paid - for example, the average teacher makes $49,000 in Florida. Unsurprisingly the same state where the insane governor Mike DeSantis is trying to undermine schools by telling them what they can teach and what books they have to remove from the library, as well as encouraging halfwit parents or local busybodies to make their lives a misery by getting elected to school boards.

Unsurprisingly you jumped on to "critical race theory" - (for example that the legacy of slavery still has some impact on society today). Of course the American right hate it, even though few can actually articulate what it is, but they are told by Tucker Carlson (incorrectly) that it is being taught in schools and is making their children atheist Marxist black lives matter supporters, or something.

The thing about unsuitable sexual material is also absurd, but plays into the QAnon aligned idea that liberals are all secretly pedophiles. What the right wants to do with schools is restrict access to information on either race or sexuality that threatens their narrow Christo-fascist outlook. And teachers, who are mostly liberal leaning, caring, and understanding of the educational needs of their students, hate this poison and want out of the profession, or risk getting prosecuted by DeSantis' "Don't say gay" bill.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Why is Japan called ‘Japan’ and not ‘Nihon?’ See in context

According to the ~1977 American Heritage Dictionary, "Japan" comes from the Chinese "Jih-pen", which translate to "(Land of the) Rising Sun". According to the website, Dictionary.com, this word was first record ~1605-1615 A.D., https://www.dictionary.com/browse/japan

Perhaps we could have just had this rather than an article that told us nothing about the etymology of "Japan".

However, even in those early days, there is evidence that Japan had other names in other countries such as Wakoku (a name for identifying Japan at the time) by the Chinese.

The origin of the “wa” in Wakoku is hotly debated. The most likely theory is that the Japanese words waga (oneself) and ware (ourself) formed it.

I was led to believe it came from 和 as in peace / harmony / Japanese. Did this come about later?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Why do you think South Korean movies, such as "Squid Game" and Parasite," for example, are achieving greater success and recognition abroad than Japanese films? See in context

Japan's Netflix series Terrace House, for example, was not only followed by an international audience

The Naked Director was another good example of a series created with wider appeal beyond Japan. On the whole Japanese dramas just don't translate for a Western audience.

Can you imagine this sales pitch:

"I have a great drama that I think will be popular abroad - it's about a Japanese high school girl who develops the power to time travel"

Rest of world: "Yawn"

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: New York attorney general sues Donald Trump and his company See in context

Lock him up!

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: Britain's Truss faces whirlwind week as politics resumes after queen's funeral See in context

y the way, the original comment above was, “Before L. Truss, why has Britain only had two prime ministers in her long history ?” Not, “Before L. Truss, why has Britain only had two female prime ministers in her long history ?”. While the latter makes more sense as a question, it’s interesting that the response to the former is constructed out of what the reader thought they saw.

I read it the same way as Jimizo - Britain has had a large number of Prime Ministers over hundreds of years, but only two female PMs, so I assumed that it was a typo. Otherwise the question did not make sense.

I think that a more relevant statistic is that three of Britain's last seven PMs have been women. I suspect that the ratio will continue like that in the future.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: 2-year-old boy dies after being hit by runaway go-kart in Hokkaido See in context

This wasn't an accident - it was entirely predictable. Just shocking negligence on the car dealership's part.

Totally - what kind of risk assessment were they making? None obviously.

There was no rule book. Someone had to think on their own, and the Japanese do not do this well. They are subservient when told what to do, but their ability to think things out can be a disaster of illogic and stupidity.

Sadly yes. But Japan is slow to change after these accidents and they keep happening. It seems crazy if there are not regulations governing safety barriers and distance spectators are allowed to the track. If there are, and were not followed, criminal convictions should follow - this was a predictable event and someone should be held responsible.

But the reality is that in Japan is that change happens slowly.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Biden, other VIPs lie low as spotlight stays on late Queen See in context

Biden arrived late for the funeral because he got stuck in traffic and wasn't allowed in until the coffin had been walked to the centre of the Abbey.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Posted in: World leaders invited to attend Queen Elizabeth's funeral See in context

There are several seriously dubious characters among the invited

Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia and the Sultan of Brunei, for example.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: World leaders invited to attend Queen Elizabeth's funeral See in context

Funeral is an impressive affair so far.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese win Ig Nobel prize for study of finger movements See in context

Could be very useful research for developing new technology interfaces that are intuitive.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Ukrainian president says burial site contains torture victims See in context

What we see here is why the Ukrainian people must fight to resist. Not all Russians are bad, but a fascist government will always allow the worst a free hand.

The Ukrainians must fight the fascist scum invaders and repel them. Worth their resolve and our weapons, Putin will be defeated.

I feel immensely sorry for the conscripts sent to their deaths for Putin's vanity project.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Posted in: Ukrainian president says burial site contains torture victims See in context

Some people either don't see the facts or just plainly deny them.

But some people are just one of a large number working for the Russian government who work shifts putting out misinformation on newsies worldwide.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Posted in: Chinese delegation barred from queen's coffin See in context

Anyone needing to know what colonial history needs explaining? Well, selling opium to the native/local population? For eg? Among many, eg.

A critical difference is that the shameful opium wars were nearly 200 years ago, long before anyone alive today was born, whereas the egregious human rights abuses in China are happening now.

The abuses in China by its foul government can stop tomorrow if it wills it.

That is why your whataboutery is particularly irrelevant.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Posted in: Keep it down See in context

And what's the fascination with train posters?

Japan has the best train posters. If you ever visit Japan, have a look at them, especially the travel ones.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Leaky pen and staff job cuts: King Charles under scrutiny See in context

In the US when a new president takes office, many thousands of various staff and workers are changed.

True, but not strictly relevant. He isn't a president and has only a ceremonial role politically.

The closer comparison would be a change of prime minister after an election. Here the UK does differ quite a bit because there are very few unelected positions that would change and even new appointments tend not to be overtly political.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Joy in northeast Ukraine as residents return after Russian retreat See in context

Superb military strategy from the Ukrainians - the Russians fell for a very simple deception.

The Russians are now retreating in a panic, leaving equipment behind. Territory that it took Russia months to take was lost in a few days. Will the demoralised Russian conscript army have the will or capability to take it back? Unlikely.

The Russian aggressors have never truly had the upper hand thanks to Ukrainian resolve and Western support. Now they are on the run.

20 ( +22 / -2 )

Posted in: Joy in northeast Ukraine as residents return after Russian retreat See in context

It is great to see fascist forces again being defeated in Europe.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov side-stepped a reporter's question of whether Putin still had confidence in the military leadership.

But does the military still have confidence in Putin?

Does anyone for that matter?

21 ( +24 / -3 )

Posted in: Peak TV bonanza complicates Emmy goal of honoring the best See in context

A bit insulting, why would we not? It just boils down to like and appeal, just like everywhere else

I believe that it was considered harder to have a successful subtitled movie on cinema release than in other countries. Hardly surprising because of the large English language domestic movie industry.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Charles III formally proclaimed king as sons reconcile See in context

does anyone know what the cause of death was?

Basically old age. The body eventually just gives up and stops working and the heart switches off.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: High-end Japanese strawberries selling like hotcakes in New York See in context

The size of fruit is more about aesthetics - in fact for a typical strawberry, a smaller or medium sized one will have more flavour than a big one. I've never had one of these strawberries before, so perhaps it's different, but bloated strawberries are usually tasteless.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Half of Japan's ruling LDP lawmakers had ties with Unification Church See in context

It’s truly bizarre and quite suspicious that at least half the LDP is connected to this church and this church comprises of less than .4% of the population.

Exactly, this is the point, not whether its 50% or 90% having ties. Until the murder of Abe, I'd never heard anything about it, and was unaware of the Moonies having any activities in Japan. And how did they go about getting this influence? And what did they do with it? I don't think that the LDP was about to declare it the state religion and decree that all weddings be held in stadiums.

I would hardly have been surprised if I'd heard that nationalist groups had links to LDP politicians. But the Moonies?

But we need to be very careful about religious cults getting too close to politics - the evangelical takeover of the Republican Party in the USA is an excellent example of the dangers.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Ancient skeleton reveals amputation surgery 31,000 years ago See in context

Why are we so surprised the ancients were doing the same thing as modern Man and could probably teach us a thing or two

Because to do it well you'd want something surgically sharp and to prevent infection. And also we haven't come across evidence of "the ancients" doing this at any point prior to 7000 years ago, following the development of agriculture.

There patient died at 20, so let's not get to carried away by what the people of 30,000 could teach us.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: King Charles III to address UK as mourning begins for late queen See in context

Is King Charles III to be his official title?

King Charles The Third, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of His other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith.

But it's a bit of a mouthful.

Actually the queen's father was called Albert, but chose to reign as George, so you never know. But if be very surprised if he went by anything but Charles III.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

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