AtsushiExiled comments

Posted in: Tokyo reports 435 new coronavirus cases; nationwide tally 1,937 See in context

I caught on the nightly news on one of the networks that infections are increasing in Kanagawa, it seems because there are many restaurants and bars that are mostly flouting the "quasi" emergency measures staying open late and serving alcohol into the wee hours, and it seems that Tokyoites are traveling there to go out. Kanagawa might be in store for a state of emergency, even though the infection rate might be falling in Tokyo.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Suga regrets having to take all the heat for hosting Olympics during pandemic See in context

This whole Olympic fiasco has revealed how weak the government is in relation to the IOC, and how the PM and mayor are seen as lapdogs to them. They could have taken a stronger position critical of the IOC's determination to pocket as much money as they can at the expense of the health of Japan's population, but they didn't. And there's probably going to be some blowback after the smoke has cleared.

Then there's this wording "regrettable". What's regrettable is that there are so many better words to translate "zannen", like remorse, grief, contrite, disappointed, repentant, shame, dismay, lament, guilt, sorrow. Any of these words would be less awkward in the headline.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan speeds up COVID vaccine rollout for elderly See in context

Hiroshima city announced the schedule for vaccinations today:

75~79歳が接種券の送付と予約開始が6月上旬で接種開始が同下旬、70~74歳が各7月上旬と同下旬、65~69歳が各8月上旬と同下旬を予定する。

75-79 years old will receive vaccination tickets and reservations will start in early June and vaccination will start in late June, 70-74 years old will start in early July and late July, and 65-69 years old will start in August.

They cited the lack of medical staff to administer the vaccinations for the additional delays. So unless the national government acts proactively to aid the prefectures and local governments, it's going to take a lot longer just to get the elderly vaccinated.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: It is understandable for young people with a lower risk of developing serious symptoms not to exercise voluntary restrictions. Criticizing them will only trigger opposition. See in context

Wherever you're getting your 99.99% figure, it's wrong. More like 80%, and recovery takes about 2-6 weeks for mild cases. And whatever you mean by "full" recovery, that's still up for debate, because of lingering symptoms, even from people with mild cases. I know a few young people (20s-30s) who were infected in March and are still suffering, one who still has pretty severe symptoms.

From a September report from the WHO about long-term effects of Covid:

• Most people with COVID-19 experience mild symptoms or moderate illness.

• Approximately 10-15% of cases progress to severe disease, and about 5% become

critically ill.

• Typically people recover from COVID-19 after 2 to 6 weeks. (See figure below)

• For some people, some symptoms may linger or recur for weeks or months following

initial recovery. This can also happen in people with mild disease. People are not

infectious to others during this time.

• Some patients develop medical complications that may have lasting health effects.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Need for speed: Japan supercomputer is world's fastest See in context

Wake me up when it can adequately translate Japanese text to English.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan takes step toward having a 'normal' military See in context

Oh good. We can probably look forward to the LDP pushing for more military spending, despite Japan already being in the top-10 in the world. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_military_expenditures

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: What do you think of Japan’s school education system? See in context

"all in all you're just another brick in the wall"

13 ( +15 / -2 )

Posted in: Gackt lashes out at Cool Japan: 'Almost no results of Japanese culture exported overseas' See in context

Japanese tattoos/tattoo artists are considered pretty cool around the world. Many are considered the most talented in their crafts in the world. I'd like to see the government promote them and their artwork. I won't be holding my breath.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Large number of sardines wash ashore along 4-km stretch of Hokkaido coast See in context

This is a bad omen. The last time a large concentration of sardines washed up dead along a shore was just before a big disaster. Take note of the date: March 8, 2011. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-12682145

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Stalker jailed for 16 years for killing ex-girlfriend See in context

The judge probably understand pretty well that living in Japanese society as an ex-con in one's middle ages is more torture to the soul than living in a prison cell. But yes, this is quite a travesty to the victims and their family.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Women execs ruin companies, magazine claims See in context

I wonder who these women are who are bringing down companies like Sony, Sharp, Panasonic, or even the women in the government who've managed to create the biggest national debt in the world? They ruin everything, don't they?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: 4 nightclub operators arrested for allowing dancing See in context

There are similar laws in the books in New York city that bars dancing in establishments that don't have the proper licenses. Both Tokyo and New York need to revisit the purpose of these laws.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Review: Don't ditch Pandora yet for iTunes Radio See in context

iTunes Radio is available outside of the US. Pandora isn't accessible outside of the US, Australia, and New Zealand. Not sure why the comparison is even applicable for Japan readers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan upgrades Fukushima leak to highest level in two years See in context

International Nuclear experts: Hey TEPCO/Japan, you need some help cleaning up this mess? We have a lot of resources at your disposal. TEPCO/Japan: Nah, we got it covered. Thanks anyway. International Nuclear experts: Are you sure? TEPCO/Japan: Yeah, no problem. International Nuclear experts: Are you really sure? ... (months/years later) TEPCO/Japan: Oooops.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Posted in: Delta CEO calls for open skies in Japan See in context

I would rather see more competition among airlines serving Japan. If you don't live in Tokyo or Osaka, it can be quite cumbersome getting on an international flight out of Narita. It usually requires a flight to Haneda, then a bus/train transfer to Narita. There don't seem to be many domestic routes between smaller cities in Japan to Narita, but many to Haneda. I don't think I'm the only one, but I've had the worst service on international flights to/from Japan on ANA and JAL, while I've had good flights on Delta or American. Delta has HBO on demand on their entertainment system which can be useful if you can't sleep.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan's jobless rate falls to 3.9% in June See in context

I'm not sure if there is a threshold for this, but I assume that if you work 10 hours a week at ¥1000 an hour, you would be considered employed. I'd rather see a statistic of "underemployed", which would paint a more realistic picture of what's going on in the job market.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: I will fight to protect our culture from American market fundamentalism and neo-liberalism. See in context

Translation: "We will drive our country into debt the traditional Japanese way. And we won't admit anything until it's too late." So take THAT, neo-liberalism!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Facebook users in Japan losing interest See in context

What an odd article! In the past year my friends from Japan have tripled. I share pictures, and am an ocean advocate. Most of the people I know on Facebook today are not focused on connecting with friends and family but making new exciting connections worldwide which includes Japan. Social media is no longer about self but rather about finding your niche. But if you don't find a niche outside of the humdrum finding old friends world than you won't hang around no matter what country you are from.

This is exactly right. FB is simply a means of communication, just like the telephone and email, or for those fickle Japanese techies, the fax machine. For those who haven't figured out how to use FB to its full potential by joining groups, and receiving news feeds from any variety of sources (including JT), then it's bound to be boring as hell, just keeping up with 29 friends, who are probably just as inactive as those dropping their accounts. That 19% drop seems reasonable to me, and that figure seems to coincide with a growing number of young folks in Japan who are completely disinterested in the outside world. Add to that the paranoia of protecting their privacy (which may or may not include actual skeletons in their closets), and the picture becomes clearer.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Facebook users in Japan losing interest See in context

A survey done in 2010 revealed that Japanese FB users had the fewest friends (average 29), and I doubt that has changed in the last 3 years. For many of these disgruntled Japanese FB users, I'm led to believe FB has become just another source of their misery. So no surprise here that it's losing a percentage of users.http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-11501625

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: With no cash for Windows upgrades, local gov't to disconnect some PCs from Net and tape up ethernet ports See in context

I wonder if those governments are also using 10 year old cars. I'll bet they found the money to replace them at 3-5 years, even though they were running fine.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Posted in: Jun Komori makes televised apology for lying to fans about auction sites See in context

I do feel bad for Komori. It should also be noted that a few others were implicated in the same scandal, namely Kumada Yoko and Hoshino Aki. Komori was the only one to issue a public apology. Though I don't know the back story, the reason I feel bad is that many of the sponsorship decisions come directly from the celebrity's management. It may have started innocuously, but by the time they realized the underhandedness of the operation, they're already involved and can only save face by sticking with it (and it wouldn't surprise me if they were pushed that way by the management team). If these stories were investigated further than the celebrity faces attached to them, we could know more about the extent to how deeply people were involved. I never hear about a celebrity's management group being implicated in these matters. It's usually just the celebrity who takes the fall and disappears. I guess that's just how it works. It seems like just another way to deflect accountability to the most convenient, rather than the ones most culpable.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: 'Gangnam Style' second most-viewed YouTube video after Justin Bieber See in context

You people don't seem to get the issue. It's not a question of quality or creativity. No one cares if you like it or think it's crap. There's a whole lot of rubbish out there that's plenty popular (remember the Macarena?). The question is why is this music so popular everywhere else in the world except Japan? It's certainly not because Japanese have better taste or some other nonsense. It's more likely because somewhere, there's a power at that has been at work successfully censoring it from Japanese public. I have my own theories and it has to do with powerful interests that would rather push AKB48 (also plenty hyped on JT) on the public rather than a parody of Asian pop from outside Japan. Me thinks some people in Japan must be plenty threatened by Psy's success.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: Tokyo court dismisses Prada sexual harassment suit See in context

I wonder if this decision will set a precedence for other similar complaints. For example, if a teacher is fired because they have a tattoo, despite the recommendations to have it removed by a prefectural government. It would be more difficult to make a discrimination claim. Anyway, I doubt she was hired for her looks. If she's a capable manager, and able to speak English, Japanese and French fluently, those are valuable skills that are probably difficult to replace.

Also, $728,000 is not a large claim. If she was making a good 6-figure salary, that's a few years of lost wages plus legal fees, and maybe a little more to compensate for the "emotional distress".

I think there's a different use of language here with the term sexual harassment. In the US, it seems to have a specific meaning of unwanted sexual attention. But in Japan, I believe the term used to fit more with "ijime" or "power harassment" issues. Maybe "gender harassment" is a better term to use here.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Japanese rate Facebook's pros and cons See in context

Yubaru, 've been on FB for a few years with a good number of friends, but I've never ever received an unwanted solicitation. All the marketing I'm talking about is from pages set up by businesses, and users subscribe to their newsfeeds. I think you have the wrong idea of what's the issue here.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Japanese rate Facebook's pros and cons See in context

Facebook is a communication tool, like any other technology (like the telephone, television, email, JT message boards, etc.). As with any technology, there's room for abuse and superfluousness, but there are also good, productive uses which shouldn't be dismissed so simply. Many businesses find it useful to have a tool for free marketing, social movements wouldn't be as organized without it, and as others have mentioned, it wouldn't be as easy to keep up to date with family and close friends half a world away without it. That said, there was another survey published last week about Facebook usage in Japan that revealed that almost half the users had less than 10 friends. http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/hl?a=20120427-00000047-impress-inet

Not sure what to make of that result, but it does seem that people are very concerned with their privacy, having to use a real name, rather than a handle (like with Mixi). What the Spa! survey indicates to me is that there's a good number of folks switching from Mixi to FB, but transferring the same behaviors from one to the other is proving to be more "stressful" as FB isn't as anonymous as Mixi.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Pachinko addiction a growing problem for Japanese women See in context

Japan has a real problem with gambling, although the government doesn't call it what it really is. And despite economic stagnation, it seems that pachinko profits have seen a steady growth since the bubble burst.

From http://www.thestandard.com.hk/stdn/std/Focus/GH08Dh01.html (2005 article)

"The pachinko industry - including both pachislot and the older pinball-like pachinko game - rakes in about 29 trillion yen (HK$2.02 trillion) in annual revenues from specialized gaming parlors throughout Japan, the government estimated last year. That's nearly four times the revenue from legal casino gambling worldwide, as estimated by PricewaterhouseCoopers."

From http://www.japansociety.org/pachinko_nation

"The total wager in Japan is staggering, on the order of $300 billion/year for legal gambling alone. Japan is the biggest gambling market in the world. The average Japanese adult loses $400 per year gambling, more than twice as much as the average American. Japan has 10 times more gambling machines per capita than the United States. All this in a country where, you see, gambling is illegal."

If the government isn't going to recoup some revenue by taxing the illicit gambling industry, it might as well invite casinos to build, at least to create jobs, and be inviting to tourists. The gambling problem that casinos would cause is merely droplets to Japan's current situation with pachinko addicts.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: How to be funny in Japan See in context

@inthesoup is exactly right. There is plenty of good comedy on Japanese TV. And equally appallingly terrible comedy on American TV. Understanding cultural nuances is key. And I might add that Saturday Night Live hasn't been funny since the 80s.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: Entitlements are not rights See in context

I wonder if Makoto's article is an indirect critique of Japanese culture, where entitlement has really run amok. The entire senpai/kohai culture, especially in the workplace, is the poster child of what it means to benefit by entitlement. If Japan Inc. was a little more achievement-oriented, rather than rely on entitlement by seniority, the economy and society would be better off.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

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