Japan Today

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Posted in: U.S. radio stations pull 'Baby, It's Cold Outside' in wake of #MeToo See in context

In that case, you may as well ban music. Going by this principle, Bohemian Rhapsody should be banned for 'sinister' lyrics about DV - "Mama, just killed a man".

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Number of foreign visitors to Japan in January-April tops 10 million See in context

This has less to do with Abenomics than these tourists coming from countries that have more disposable income available and want to travel.

An increase of disposable income of other nations has also contributed, but the Japanese Government has made concerted efforts to attract more tourists, including easing visa restrictions, which have been major drivers of this increase in tourist numbers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Charles Jenkins, husband of ex-abductee Hitomi Soga, dies at 77 See in context

Is there any record of why he deserted?

He wrote in his book ("告白") that he thought he would be taken to Russia and then returned to the US.  he had a few beers one night and then walked towards where he knew the North Koreans would pick him up.  He never thought they would keep him.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Japanese rider Arashiro feels at home in the Tour de France See in context

Big, big props to this guy for being able to communicate in French this well.

All professional cyclists can speak French. It is pretty much compulsory.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Wagyu vs kokusangyu – The difference between the two types of Japanese beef See in context

To my knowledge no American or Australian Wagyu is imported and even if they were they will not be able to be sold as Wagyu in Japan.

There is plenty of wagyu from Australia exported to Japan, of which the majority is marble score 7 and up. Despite there being a concern about the labeling of crossbreeds as wagyu, that which is defined as wagyu from Australia is labeled as such in Japan. Australia has properties (not ranches as stated in the article) which do breed 100% wagyu, and this too is exported to Japan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Madonna again criticized by Australian fans for stage behavior See in context

Actually, she was almost 3.5 hours late for her first Brisbane concert, and about 2.5 hours late for her second one.

3 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Toshiba said to be considering battery plant in Australia as Japan seeks sub deal See in context

Aly Rustom

Methinks it will be Germany. If Australia was going to pick Japan they would have done it by now.

I can't see it not being Japan. The major hurdles about them being built locally and the sharing of information have been overcome. The Government I think are just working out the best timing to announce it given there is an election coming up and the perceived necessity to be cautious of China's reaction after it is announced.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Aussie beef See in context

I like Australian beef, and Australian steaks. But I'll take a nice marbled fatty Japanese steak over a lean western steak any day.

A large proportion of the Aussie beef market is destined for Japan and thus grown to strict specifications to create the marble steak the Japanese like. Given the recent JAEPA and TPP agreements, tariffs on Aussie beef will reduce significantly, which will see a huge increase in Aussie beef throughout Japan.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Posted in: Former American POWs visit Japan, recount memories See in context

@ Sensato

I imagine the request was denied largely because the Yawata plant's World Heritage status does not cover the war years when foreign slave labor was used, and the bureaucrats don't want to sully the site's role as a source of pride for Japan by allowing/publicizing the the former POW's visit.

I have been actively involved with this program (not for US veterans) and your assumption is incorrect. There are many reasons why some veterans cannot visit such places, such as time constraints, mobility issues, healthy and safety issues, just to name a few.

Those on the Japan side who assist with this program do not white-wash anything and acknowledge what these men experienced, including the Government officials (despite ridiculous comments from time to time by a few politicians denying such history).

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: 120,000 protest against security bills outside Diet See in context

@ warispeace

Rather we should focus on Abe's cynical use of rhetoric about national security or protecting America to justify changing the law so that mostly young people from the lower classes would be sent into battle to protect the interests of the global corporate elite.

Such a simplistic and quite arrogant point of view. How about the law allowing Japanese SDF members being able to assist soldiers of other countries when they are in combat i.e. protecting and saving lives.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Posted in: Abe: Japan must face history, but future generations should not have to keep apologizing See in context

@ Crazy Joe

It's a bit of a dark spot on the Land of the Rising Sun that the government there has yet to forthrightly face and admit to the sweeping nature of Japan's aggression and violence, 1900-1945.

I personally know of private sincere apologies to specific ex-POWs from the Japanese Government - on numerous occasions. Apoligies are not always accepted, but I can guarantee you that on these occasions, the apology was very heartfelt and accepted by those it was directed to.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: Survivor recalls life in internment camp for Japanese-Americans See in context


You are confusing prisoner camps with internment camps! Not the same thing at all.

Be careful with your terminology. Millions of civilians were caught up in Japanese POW camps. Many refer to themselves as civilian POWs and not internees - they were going about their daily lives when one day put into camps. They too were prisoners of war. One case is an Australian friend of mine who was a child civilian POW in China. Suddenly separated from his family at nine years old for four years. He witnessed death of his friends due to severe brutality. I acknowledge on the whole military POW camps were much worse, but just because one was not a military POW doesn't mean that they were treated less harsh.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Angelina Jolie's 'Unbroken' strikes a nerve in Japan See in context

“But there was absolutely no cannibalism,” said Mutsuhiro Takeuchi, a nationalist-leaning educator and a priest in the traditional Shinto religion. “That is not our custom.”

100% incorrect. It may not have been ritual, but it certainly occurred. It is documented not only on the Australian side, but also the Japanese side through veterans themselves.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Purple haze of jacarandas draws Japanese to South Africa See in context

Australia is full of them right now...much closer than SA!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: After Fukushima, Japan gets green boom - and glut See in context


The Australian government has been paying half the installation costs for domestic solar panels for over a decade and, as a result, Australia is now approaching 50% renewable energy.

The different states have had different schemes over the past few years, with different rates and rebates for the panels. The result of this intake has been massive increases in electricity prices for those who can't afford or unable to fix solar panels to their homes. The power grid infrastructure is still obviously used, however, less people are using it and thus the cost of maintenance and upgrading is paid for by few people, thus at substantial cost to those few people. A$150/month for an electricity bill is a relatively cheap bill for a couple. If such schemes are not carefully thought out, Japan could easily find itself with the massive problems Australia has in this area.

I am not sure when you get 50% renewable energy from - I believe the figure is closer to 10%.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: McDonald’s gets flak for removing menus from counters See in context

Australia only has the menu board as well and it is very, very annoying. It takes people a lot longer to order, and they don't have the whole menu on display. You have to look at other posters, etc. in the store to see what else they have. The menus at the counter are much more convenient, faster and you would think create more sales as the WHOLE menu is right there in front of your eyes.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Eric Lomax, ex-POW who forgave Japanese torturer, dies at 93 See in context

Amazing man, doesnt say much about the guy who inflicted the torture, any remorse there?

Nagase dedicated basically his entire post-war life towards reconciliation to not only ex-POWs, but also the local people in Thailand and Burma. Search for the book "Digger's Story" written by Australian ex-POW David Barrett (www.warstory.com.au). David and Nagase became very close friends and David spoke very highly of him regarding his attitude towards reconciliation, etc.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Tourism Australia to target Asia with new marketing fund See in context

No use throwing all this money when the cost of anything is so expensive and customer service is non-existent.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan scraps plan to give away 10,000 free flights to visitors See in context

It was an irresponsible promotion in the first place if they had not secured the means before making the promise; don't put the onus on the people to 'understand'.

Actually, it was never promised at all. It was simply a proposal and was reported as if it was a certainty. The government has implemented several other promotions such as inviting previous JET participants from tsunami and earthquake affected areas.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Probable WWII Japanese submarine found off Papua New Guinea See in context

Actually, the Australian media are reporting this as a submarine from WW1.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Was I a date, a friend or just a potential English teacher? See in context

You want to practice your Japanese on her but not let her at all practive her English, if that is even what she wanted to do?! You got some pretty selfish, narrow-minded thinking going on. I am quite dumfounded at the box you seem to put Japanese people in, expecting them to act a certain way, as if every person is the same. If you actually 'lived' in Japan instead if thinking so much, you would probably learn a lot more about Japanese society instead of some warped view you have. Try getting out of that tiny bubble of yours and live and experience Japan and learn something.

I have read some pretty low level drivel written by both Japanese and non-Japanese regarding Japan and thought I had seen it all....but I have been proven wrong. This takes the cake.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: The big heat See in context

And that one lone gaijin in the center is saying : What the hell am I doing here?

Maybe he is trying to make a move on the hot chick in the green bikini next to him (in front of his girlfriend who is just visible on his right).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan walkout throws whaling talks into disarray See in context

"Japan claims its hunts are for research purposes though the meat from the killed whales mostly ends up in restaurants, stores and school lunches"

MrDog: Disregarding the attribution for the article, what is factually wrong with that statement?

Under the laws of the IWC, meat from whales killed for scientific research is allowed to be sold. The above statement tends to make the reader think that this is not allowed.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Munchies for the office See in context

This is not a new product. We've had it at our office for at least 3 years.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Hoshino, Minami promote McDonald's-Coca-Cola campaign See in context

Never seen fried potatoes at McDonalds before.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan's online social scene isn't so social See in context

Putting up too many pictures or too much personal information comes back to bite them in the backside. By having less information and limited access, etc. prevents all this. Smart if you ask me.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Bar Flower: My Decadently Destructive Days And Nights As A Tokyo Hostess See in context

"no, they really don’t sleep with their customers"...but then.... "A hostess who sleeps with her customers, says Jacobson, is just bad at her job" So...she says they don't but then admits they do...hmmm.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: A downloaded question See in context

"Once the film started, for the first 20 minutes, we were juggling our Big Macs and drinks, trying not to make a mess." That's not the cinema's fault. Maybe the big macs were just a bit too big for you. Maybe try a cheeseburger next time. Everytime I have been to the cinema, I have chosen where I want to sit without paying any extra. Don't know if this depends on the cinema but if you have to pay to choose, why would you go to that particular cinema? What is stopping you walking out during the credits? That is your decision to stay there. Again, can't blame the cinema for that. One thing that can be said is that they are ridiculously overpriced in whatever country.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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