borscht comments

Posted in: U.S. President Joe Biden is expected to nominate former Chicago Mayor Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel as ambassador to Japan. Which do you think is more important for incoming ambassadors: To be well connected to their country's leader or to have a good knowledge of the country they are going to? See in context

Political appointees tend to be political (PA), oddly enough. Career diplomats who are foreign service officers (CD) tend to be chosen either for their expertise or ability to negotiation or their ability to run an embassy. America has more Career diplomats as ambassadors than Political appointees (although all ambassadors are appointed by the President).

Choice ambassadorships such as England, France, Japan, and the Vatican (because they can live in Italy) are often given to presidential friends who contributed to their campaigns, such as Caroline Kennedy supporting Obama.

Obviously knowing how to communicate America’s needs and wants to the host country is more valuable than being a chump for the president. If the ambassador has some ties with the country it would be nice, such as JF Kennedy’s Japanese ambassador Reischauer, who was fluent in Japanese and Chinese.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Do you think the extended state of emergency in parts of Japan will work for or against the Tokyo Olympics? See in context

The SOE will have no affect on the IOC as the IOC only siphons cash from Japan and, according to Suga, is in charge of both Japan and the Olympics.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: Philip Morris to phase out cigarettes in Japan within decade See in context

Why is it taking them ten years instead of five? Do they have contracts with wholesalers (aka the Japanese government) or a stockpile of ten-years worth of cigarettes?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Ishikawa town builds giant squid with COVID relief funds See in context

Reuters called Noto's government but the person who answered was not authorised to speak with the press. Japan's government buildings were closed on Wednesday for annual Golden Week holidays.

So, call Thursday. I hardly think this is a Pulitzer Prize scoop in the works.

I'm in the right business, but need better contacts in government to cash in on this covid relief funding scam.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

Posted in: There has been growing demand in Japan for abortion pills that are widely used and considered safe and effective around the world. See in context

Professor Osuga seems to have forgotten that Japanese females have unique uteruses unlike any uteruses on the planet so it will take a Japanese pharmaceutical company to come up with a unique Japanese abortion pill, as soon as they reverse engineer LinePharma’s pill.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan's child population hits record low after 40 years of decline See in context

Japan will face some hard times until these under-14-year-olds hit retirement age. They'll have to support retirees until they retire but there won't be enough money. Once they retire, less money will be needed and the country will adjust to a smaller population. For the next 50+ years the government will have to continue printing money, perhaps devaluing the currency.

IF there's a baby boom in the next six to sixteen years, maybe the current children will have a comfortable retirement.

I think. Is there another scenario I'm unaware of?

13 ( +14 / -1 )

Posted in: Gov't advisers warn Japan's birth rate falling at more rapid pace this year See in context

The council is comprised of Suga 

So, Suga is advising Suga. I hope he listens, but I doubt he will.

We have children because my wife felt it was time. In my town 100% of the hospital birthing expenses is reimbursed. Oddly, my town has babies; anecdotal, but all of my neighbors have kids.

Second, while 'education' is free, it's all those 'essential' extras that add up. For example, the housewives in our elementary school district got together to ban school uniforms. Big savings. But couldn't convince the school that all the required extras for club activities (mandatory) in junior high were unnecessary. Big cost.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Gov't studies SDF response in event of Taiwan Strait conflict See in context

These are called contingency plans and every competent military and/or government has them. I wouldn’t be surprised if the US has a contingency plan in case war is declared between it and Canada.

But Japan will do something if the US and China get into a tussle over Taiwan; they will profit mightily off of the conflict, as they did with the wars in Korea and Vietnam.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Let's fight terrorism See in context

It’s nice to see the terrorist in this poster is Japanese as all terrorist activities in Japan were instigated by Japanese citizens.

I worry about that small detail thanking citizens for cooperating and understanding police activities. What activities are they talking about? On the other hand, I realize this ‘cooperation and understanding’ is a set phrase most companies and other organizations use after stating something.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

Posted in: Olympic puppet See in context

I believe the Olympic organisers believe they can slap “symbolise the spirit of Fukushima” on anything and they think they’re doing something for the people of Fukushima. Remember when the Olympics were to show the “spirit of Fukushima” before being taken over by “symbolizing the defeat of Coronavirus.”

But I like the puppet; it’s walking like a giant freak show.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: We will be asking for illuminations and neon signs to be turned off at night. Hopefully, that will discourage people from going out at night. We are also asking non-residents to refrain from entering Tokyo as much as possible. See in context

Instead of 'asking', why doesn't the gov't of Tokyo 'order under penalty' stores to turn off lights, pull the shutters down, lock up, and go home for 16 days?

Just to see if, as in Vietnam, New Zealand, and South Korea, a hard lockdown works.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: Many older music fans miss the complete ‘album experience’ such as cover art, liner notes and photos that have disappeared due to streaming. What's your view on that? See in context

I miss the liner notes and seeing Hal Blaine's name on almost every album. I also miss spreading my weed out on the covers to roll a few while listening to the music. And I miss some of the more innovative album covers like Led Zeppelin III, Sticky Fingers, and Their Satanic Majesties Request.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Recession risk looms with 3rd state of emergency See in context

If the 'leaders' ordered a serious lockdown during the first 'state of emergency' when people were worried and taking the coronavirus seriously, perhaps the pandemic could've been avoided. Such as New Zealand, South Korea, Vietnam, and (perhaps) China.

But namby-pamby 'urges' and 'requests' resulted in an ongoing dribble of disease that has resulted in yet another urge for citizens to stay home during their One Week of pleasure. All tourist-related businesses will suffer.

And people are not taking coronavirus seriously anymore given the government lackeys going to steak dinners and parties and 'vowing' to hold the Tokyo Olympics 'no matter what the cost.'

So, of course the economy will suffer. Again.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

Posted in: A 'Romeo and Juliet' movie that celebrates theatrical roots See in context

So begins the National Theatre's latest take on “Romeo and Juliet,” a filmed production that adds cinematic touches to the tragic 16th century Italian love story.

I would hope a movie (film) would have cinematic touches.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Suga to declare state of emergency in Osaka; no decision on Tokyo See in context

reach a "swift" conclusion.

Hahahaha! I'm glad "swift" is in quotes so we can all know it won't be.

Why can't the governor of a prefecture declare his or her own state of emergency? Why does everyone have to wait for a national committee to suck teeth? Is it for the money the national gov't will send to the prefecture?

However it's nice to know Suga conferred with the health minister and the guy in charge of covid response, who, I must say, is doing a bang up job responding (except for allowing it to run rampant, of course).

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Posted in: Teacher disciplined for drinking alcohol during class in Okinawa See in context

You'd think a teacher would be smart enough to pour his shochu into a water glass instead of drinking it straight from the can. Even if students didn't know what it was, other adults working at the school would.

20 ( +21 / -1 )

Posted in: Toyota unveils plans for global line-up of battery electric vehicles See in context

That is hangover from the poor welcome an electric version of its Rav4 SUV received in the United States in 1997 owing to its limited range and a lack of recharging stations.

I investigated this vehicle. Called a dealer to ask the price: ¥5,000,000. Price to replace the batteries: ¥5,000,000. How long do the batteries last?: 5 years. So, a new (very expensive) car every five years. Even the salesman sounded disappointed.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan considers letting dentists administer COVID-19 vaccines See in context


What about nurses? AFAIK, nurses today, shockingly, are not allowed to vaccinate in Japan

A doctor I teach told me this:

the doctor interviews the patient (questions about name, age, allergies etc), then the nurse injects the vaccine. If the doctor injects it, the nurse hands it to him, so it is more efficient for the nurse to inject the vaccine while the doctor moves on to the next patient.

So, I believe your information might be in error. However, legally I believe only the doctor stabs patients with needles.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Police report record number of cannabis offenders in 2020 See in context

Toasted heretic, I believe blow is a reference to cocaine and not marijuana.

There’s a comedian with jokes about alcohol and marijuana use: If two men are fighting in a bar are they drunk or high on marijuana? If some one is driving down the road at ten kilometers an hour, are they high or drunk? If a man walks up to you in the street with a gun, demands all your money, and then laughs himself silly, is he high or drunk? Oddly, the audience choose the right answer every time; while they laugh themselves silly.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Posted in: Princess Mako's boyfriend expresses resolve to marry her See in context

A 24-page statement and all Kyodo garners from it are vague ‘necessary choice’, ‘best choice’, ‘urges’, ‘correct erroneous information’, ‘beliefs’, and ‘making corrections’, all without giving any concrete statements such as ‘we borrowed ¥4,000,000 and haven’t paid it back, but we are planning to as soon as I marry and Mako-sama’s retirement money comes in.’ or ‘We borrowed ¥4,000,000 and have no intention of paying it back because we - my mother and I - consider it payment for services rendered.’

On the other hand, two 29-year-olds who can’t figure out how to get married perhaps don’t deserve to get married.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: 5 students arrested after putting glue on playground equipment See in context

The boys told police they did it because they thought it would fun.

Moderators/Writers: Despite having three verbs, this sentence requires one more (hint: be).

Moderator: Thank you for pointing that out. It has been fixed.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan's commercial whaling season begins in coastal waters See in context

I wonder if the whaling industry would survive if the government stopped financially supporting and purchasing whale meat so students can have a small chunk of it once year as part of their Japanese culture food class. I doubt it.

2 ( +16 / -14 )

Posted in: Leisure teleworkers - supposedly working but in fact gaming, day-trading, or scanning for new job opportunities See in context

Maybe, just maybe, workers get their work done faster when they don’t have micro-managers hovering over their shoulders.

Maybe workers see something they’d rather be doing than work (vacuum, games, check JapanToday for inane comments like this one) and are more productive. Maybe.

Maybe managers have more busy-work they want their underlings to do rather than actual work and telework has eliminated this busy-work and suddenly - Suddenly! - the coronavirus has shown how unproductive the typical company workers are? Maybe.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: If you could live in any city in the world (post-pandemic), other than where you live now, which one would you choose and why? See in context

There are many places I'd like to live pre-pandemic or post-pandemic. How the pandemic influences our choice of city is unclear.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Osaka YouTubers’ stupid plan to live-stream marijuana dealer’s arrest backfires See in context

What is a

mater detective 


10 ( +10 / -0 )

Posted in: Teacher fired for installing spy camera in junior high school toilet See in context

Should be arrested and, if convicted, jailed or heavily fined.

Just a side note,

A junior high school male teacher

Isn’t it usually “A male junior high school teacher...”

13 ( +15 / -2 )

Posted in: Case involving skateboarder defacing historical bridge sent to prosecutors See in context

It is a beautiful bridge. Are there signs prohibiting vehicles? If not, it’s a pity people use it as a bridge and not just as a sightseeing point. If there are signs, I think a fine is in order, but sending the case to prosecutors?

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan complains over U.S. military's use of term 'East Sea' See in context

Well, I really hope that when North Korea lobs several missiles into Tokyo that the news media call it the Sea of Japan instead of the East Sea so as not to irritate the completely destroyed government of what-used-to-be Japan. In other words, This is Japan’s biggest problem?

-11 ( +12 / -23 )

Posted in: British citizen arrested for dumping bento trash in mailbox See in context

Dece 24 and Mach 17

Haven't seen those abbreviations before; interesting.


Japanese people not being all that keen on eating or drinking in public spaces

With Cherry blossom viewing just around the corner, I suggest Casey step outside and observe.

16 ( +16 / -0 )

Posted in: Tama schools in Tokyo distributing free feminine hygiene products to students See in context

How many boys are extremely embarrassed by having stubble? How many boys are in pain while growing stubble? How many boys stay home for a few days while their stubble grows? How many boys are hesitant and shy about buying razors & shaving cream?

Schools tend to give out free toilet paper, too. Should we stop that, too? After all, if you can’t afford to buy toilet paper, don’t have kids. Or charge ¥25~50 for the privilege?

Free lunches and breakfasts for students who can’t afford them benefit everyone, not just the person eating. Students without food don’t study as well, and in later life might be a burden on society. If they finish school, they have a better chance of becoming a productive member of society i.e. a tax payer just like you.

But rather than stop at a Rolls Royce, how about giving them a house? One with a slippery slope fallacy.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

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