COVID-19 INFORMATION What you need to know about the coronavirus if you are living in Japan or planning a visit.

albaleo comments

Posted in: AINU trademark application in China criticized by Japan's indigenous people See in context

Has anyone bothered to check whether the company using the "Ainu" name is using it to mean the indigenous people of northern Japan?

Don't be silly, Bertie. That would be no fun.

Is this not a simple legal issue of what kinds of words can be trademarked and for what purpose rather than a full-blown culture theft? Does the same problem not exist in most countries? "Cherokee" was mentioned above. In the UK, "Iceland" is trademarked by a foodstore chain, and it has caused various issues.

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Posted in: Koike says 'simplified' Games may be necessary to avoid cancellation See in context

Here's my proposal. Athens 2024, Athens 2028, Athens 2032 etc

I wonder what the people of Athens think about that?

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Posted in: Rakuten Mobile, NEC to jointly develop standalone 5G core network See in context

Maybe I haven't had enough coffee yet, but I can't understand a word of that. What is it they are actually making?

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Posted in: Nissan sees cost of quitting Barcelona at up to $1.7 bil, source says See in context

Nissan seems to be consolidating its manufacturing base in its Sunderland operation, which seems odd given the Brexit situation.

Nissan yesterday described the Sunderland plant as unsustainable if no tariff-free agreement is reached between the UK and EU.

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Posted in: Soccer out of touch suppressing on-field activism See in context

Liverpool players also expressed their feelings:

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Posted in: In U.S., camera phones increasingly expose racism See in context

The woman in Central Park freaked out and started calling the cops after the man accosting her about her unleashed pet threatened to toss poisoned meat to her dog.

That's not how I read the story. He said he would pull out some dog treats that he uses for such occasions. It perhaps implied poisoning, but there was no direct threat. He admitted what he said was intended to frighten her.

What got me was how she described the situation to the police. "There is an African-American man, I am in Central Park, he is recording me and threatened myself and my dog". Why the racial reference? Especially in New York where the racial mix is the norm.

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Posted in: City's quit-smoking program proving a hit during pandemic See in context


While I couldn't read the full article you linked to, I read earlier of research showing smokers were less likely to contract the disease in the first place. As a smoker, I may be tempted to chuckle, but the reason I read was that smokers have already-damaged lungs. The virus attacks a healthy cell that smokers have fewer of.

I think the other side of that coin is that smokers who do contract the disease will have a harder time recovering.

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Posted in: Even mild coronavirus illness may confer some immunity: study See in context

and otherwise let the countries return to normality

I agree that we are in a fog at the moment. But shouldn't we start to think whether we need a new kind of normal rather just returning to our old ways? I'm thinking of things such as huge offices packed into large city centers, large supermarkets and shopping centers, and basically the tendency over time of causing us to come into contact with ever larger numbers of other people. No easy task, but perhaps we should try and point things in a better direction.

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Posted in: SpaceX rocket lifts off on historic private crewed flight See in context

@The Avenger,

Thanks for the link. There's another view of the landing here taken from the cpaceship itself. (It's not in real time and is speeded up.)

The name of the barge it landed on is, "Of Course I Still Love You". The other barge on the Pacific side is named, "Just Read The Instructions". The weird names come from super-intelligent ships that feature in an Iain M Banks novel. I guess Elon Musk is a fan of his books. I am too.

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Posted in: Nissan to close Spain, Indonesia plants after losses See in context

Just see where Nissan's production is moving. England. A country on the European continent, which is outside the European Union. Where European environmental laws are no longer in force. Because of the departure of this one in January of this year.

But is production capacity of the respective plants in England and Spain not the main issue for Nissan? I can't find accurate data to compare year by year, but does the England plant not produce about three times more cars than the Spain plant?

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Posted in: S Korea reports biggest jump in coronavirus cases in more than 50 days See in context


The only defense against covid19 is to let the young and healthy build the immunity wall.

While the idea of building an immunity wall among the young should be seriously discussed, viewing it as "the only defense" when we're floundering in ignorance is not so helpful.

That is just not true. We have been on the planet lot longer then the vaccines.

Depends what you mean by "we". As a species, yes. But many of our species were only on the planet for a short time until they succumbed to a fatal disease. Those numbers have dropped, due partly to advances in medicine.

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Posted in: S Korea reports biggest jump in coronavirus cases in more than 50 days See in context

Sweden has higher death per milion than the USA! 

True, but four states in the USA (New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts) each have death rates more than twice as high as Sweden. Which is the more appropriate comparison? Sweden's rate is also lower than those of Belgium, UK, France, and Italy. Again, I'm not sure what that tells us exactly.

My numbers are based on these links:

The only safe way to achieve herd immunity is by vaccination.

But how realistic is that? What are the downsides in terms of health if we wait for such a vaccine?

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Posted in: Scientists fight online virus misinformation war See in context

In 2020, those same scientists

Could you tel us their names so we can avoid reading their stuff?

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Posted in: Man swims across moat to enter Imperial Palace grounds See in context

a naked British man

That should put most people off their dinner.

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Posted in: White House is in the hands of a sociopathic megalomaniac, says Noam Chomsky See in context

I'm a leftist and critical of China.

Me too. I was thinking of other folk's heads. Mine is fine. Yours too, it seems.

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Posted in: White House is in the hands of a sociopathic megalomaniac, says Noam Chomsky See in context

Described as leftist but critical of China. That must do some people's heads in.

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Posted in: 'Real Lords of the Flies' shipwreck to become Hollywood movie See in context

Additional comment...

I was required to read Lord Of The Flies at school as a teenager. I really disliked it; it made me uncomfortable. But I'm fairly sure the reason for the discomfort was that the story featured no girls. The "all boys" thing was weird, and perhaps indicative of something about the writer.

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Posted in: 'Real Lords of the Flies' shipwreck to become Hollywood movie See in context

It was based on a dubious premise promoted by Thomas Huxley that nature was "red in tooth and claw."

Was the "red in tooth and claw" not a concept from a Tennyson poem? I know Kropotkin critiqued Huxley's "struggle for existence" ideas, but was it not just a different interpretation of the same basic idea?

Sorry, it's a long time since I studied this - I found both Huxley and Kropotkin's ideas interesting.

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Posted in: Man roughed up, robbed by gang of youths in Osaka See in context

knowing they would never be prosecuted even if caught, according to Japanese law 

Wrong (again).

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Posted in: 3 youths arrested for throwing concrete blocks from bridge onto expressway See in context

but in the eyes of the law, you are the same as a three-year-old child when it comes to crime.

This is wrong (again). In Japan, people can be tried in normal criminal courts from age 14.

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Posted in: New Yorker fatally stabs dad during Zoom chat See in context

With 20 or so witnesses and the perp's own confession, what possible grounds are there for a plea of not guilty? 

Hidden features in the Zoom software utilize the wifi signals to control people's minds. I'm sure I read that somewhere. The current president of the USA may back me up on this.

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Posted in: After the coronavirus is contained and international borders are open, what factors will you take into consideration before taking a flight overseas? See in context

Necessary or not, I want to return to Japan. Families, friends, children, babies.

Likewise. I may need to take some sailing lessons and start building a yacht.

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Posted in: UK to quarantine arrivals for 2 weeks See in context


It's interesting that the BBC article contains the following quotation:

I'm not sure why it's so interesting. Whether a ship is trying to stop or help another vessel, it shouldn't risk the lives of those on the vessel. When a boat is sailing away from you, it is not safe to stop it or rescue those on board. Your only option is to shadow it. (Farage sees it as "escorting".)

The article also contains this quote:

[Migrants] have seen that if you can get close to a British vessel, then essentially you are guaranteed to be taken into one of our ports and you are pretty well guaranteed

It seems these migrants aren't daft. Pull up next to a British vessel and you will be taken to Britain. (We perhaps need more smart folk like those in the UK.)

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Posted in: UK to quarantine arrivals for 2 weeks See in context

You've got the French Navy escorting illegal immigrants into British waters 

That's described differently by others.

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Posted in: Japan to seek extradition of men arrested in U.S. over Ghosn escape See in context

It would violate the Constitution if you deport a natural-born citizen.

I'm no expert, but from reading the Wikipedia page below, I gather that only applies for extradition to countries where there is no treaty in place.

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Posted in: UK to quarantine arrivals for 2 weeks See in context

Three months too late. Why close the stable door after the horse has bolted?

There may be some logic to it. While the UK was in internal lockdown, people arriving from overseas were unlikely to interact with others. As lockdown restrictions are eased, the chance of foreign visitors interacting increases. (OK, perhaps not the strongest of arguments. )

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Posted in: Japan to seek extradition of men arrested in U.S. over Ghosn escape See in context

The US extradites citizens all the time,

Its own citizens? I'm finding it hard to find even a single case of US citizen being extradited. Do you any further info?

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Posted in: Trump lashes out at scientists whose findings contradict him See in context

does she have expertise in microbiology or genetic engineering, DNA sequencing or anything regarding the study of infectious diseases. yeah no, leave it to the professionals who actually have expertise is these fields and fighting viruses and or developing vaccines for them.

To be fair, she openly stated she wasn't an expert in epidemiology. She also didn't say the science was wrong so much as that scientists were working with limited information, and therefore advice could be found to be wrong in hindsight. Her main point was that politicians and government had a difficult time making decisions in such circumstances. I think that's a fair point.

One junior UK politician 

Not so junior, I think.

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Posted in: Australian state leaders bicker over opening borders for domestic tourism See in context

Did they "bicker" or did they "argue"? I think there's a difference. It's a serious issue with a range of different yet serious arguments. I'd be more worried if they unanimously agreed on what to do.

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Posted in: Spread out See in context

They are clearly still budding up at tables.

If they also have to work nearby each other, does it make any difference? Keeping separated from groups you don't work with seems appropriate.

Mitsubishi producing trucks does not constitute essential services during lockdown.

But supplying trucks and spare parts for various services (medical supplies, etc.) is probably important.

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