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Chubaka comments

Posted in: 57 new coronavirus cases confirmed on cruise ship in Nagasaki See in context

If it can be shown that the crew violated quarantine (via security cameras or otherwise), Japan should ask that the crew be reduced or suspend the ship’s docking privileges. As it is, local firms doing the maintenance and repairs continue to be exposed to this growing breeding ground of Coronavirus.

Most of the ship’s crew could be sent back to their home origins, which are probably SE Asian nations like Indonesia and Philippines. This foreign ship’s personnel could needlessly tie up medical resources that are best used elsewhere in the prefecture. There can be no economic benefit worth keeping the status quo.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Posted in: Rotting corpse discovered by two men exploring 'haunted hotel' in Miyazaki See in context

Not likely but one wonder if this will be one of the hotels the government has secured for Covid patients with mild symptoms in Kyushu. “Here’s Johnny!...”

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: 4-year-old boy hit, killed by bus; driver arrested See in context

For the rear of the bus to swing out, the driver had to be moving at a fast clip. Bad habit that finally caught up with him in a tragic way.

Bus Drivers seem not to penalized for turning into occupied crosswalks. I have experienced this both in China and Japan. Do pedestrians not have right of way in these nation where crosswalks are controlled with a lighted signal?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Hospitals turning away sick people as coronavirus cases surge See in context

Once this virus gets into Japan’s nursing homes, retirement communities, and skilled nursing facilities, all bets are off. Not to mention rural areas with much more limited health care resources.

Its a nice idea to set up critical care facilities in sports arenas and convention centers like the US is doing, but who is going to staff them in Japan, when hospital staffs are already being depleted by illness and overwork? You can say JDF to the rescue, but I doubt they have the numbers of skilled personnel that is going to be required. May have to recall all those health workers Japan sends overseas annually under the auspices of the UN and NGOs...

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Posted in: Osaka asks citizens for raincoats amid shortage of protective gear See in context

Deja vu—We’ve heard these kinds of desperate appeal for PPE donations last month in the US from state governors, mayors and individual hospitals. When it gets to the point that healthcare staff have to re-use their face masks and wear trash bags when dealing with masses of infected patients, that’s simply not going to be effective.

In the past 2 months, many brave US, Italian, UK, Spanish, Chinese, etc. physicians and nurses have died of Coronavirus contracted from their patients. All because of a lack of adequate PPE that their governments at various levels and for various reasons have not provided.

Nations like Russia, Brazil, and Japan appear not to have learned the lessons of the past few months. Sadly their healthcare workers will now bear the brunt of this ignorance.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Firms inventing high-quality masks to battle virus See in context

Someone here has mentioned the ears as a possible way for a virus to enter the human body and cause infection? Not unless you poked an infected finger in an ear! Which is secondary to unwashed or unsanitized hands.

Many people who are constantly in public situations such as grocery store employees are starting to wear eye protection in the US. But unless you are directly confronted by someone sneezing or coughing, the nose and mouth are still the most likely venues for Coronavirus to enter, along with contaminated hands.

Proper use of a face mask while moving around in Covid-19 hotspots in my county has saved this 64-year-old so far! I’ll follow the advice of infectious disease experts any day, before I listen to shade tree “experts” contradict their effectiveness.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Firms inventing high-quality masks to battle virus See in context

Using washi paper between two layers of cotton actually seems a very sensible and economical mask design. The washi insert can be replaced daily or more frequently as needed. And the reusable cotton pouches washed daily,

Last month on the US West Coast, a garment manufacturer tested various materials and mask designs for the public to wear that would actually be effective in allowing unhampered breathing, while also protecting against the spread of viral particles by sneeze or cough.

Cotton-layered masks by themselves were graded wholly ineffective, but placing a folded blue paper “shop towel” between cotton layers (the type of dense, disposable paper towels used by many auto repair venues) were found to be the most useful of readily available inserts tried. It’s breathable but protects against viral entry similar to most hospital face masks (not N-95).

One can assume the thickness found in quality washi paper is similar to those shop towel inserts now being used in more face masks here in California.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: LDP lawmaker's family member tests positive for coronavirus See in context

Regarding the “Genetic Network Analysis Provides Snapshot...” being discussed here, that is a proposal and NOT an actual peer/reviewed study. The scientists involved admit their phylogenetic method had not been used before the Coronavirus pandemic.

There are many scientists trying to explain how Covid-19 has manifested itself around the world, but the leading disease geneticists have so far rejected their theories. Trying to imply an “Asian” version is less harmful is basically buying into China’s released figures, which Western nations see as vastly underreported.

And also it means accepting figures from Japan despite its reluctance to actively test its population. As someone who works in public health, I know better than to cling in faith onto one science article that fits my worldview. Most scientists so far see Covid-19 as a relatively stable virus that mutates less often than influenza.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Man arrested over sexual assault of teenage girl See in context

Since in this case parent(s) not being home overnight was evidently a routine thing that this rapist identified, one may ask why? Did the parent(s) work overnight, or were they doing sleepovers elsewhere? Parenting and protecting a child doesn't stop once they reach their teen years. How do they make this up to their child now?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Health ministry taps Tokyo Girls Collection for coronavirus awareness campaign See in context

Gargling after being around someone who is sick is misguided advice from old ad campaigns conducted by Listerine, etc. There was no proof that it was ever protective against viruses. But I guess at least it will give the Tokyo Girls confidence as they face the public each day with fresh breath...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Olympic flame to be carried by car instead of torchbearers See in context

An unprecedented problem—Will the torch/flame be returned to Greece? Maintained until 2021 in Tokyo? Or doused as if it never happened? It would be nice if the flame could be kept in Tokyo as a promise by the IOC to Japan, especially after all the investment and efforts they have put into holding (or attempting to) this event.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Posted in: More Americans think U.S.-Japan relations improved under Trump: poll See in context

I think the headline to this story is a bit misleading. It seems to imply that US-Japan relations have improved significantly under Trump, compared to previous US administrations. But that’s not what the story is about. This poll just shows that there is a perceived improvement in US-Japan relations under Trump from his first year in office in 2017 to his third year in 2019. A 28-percent positive response is hardly an overwhelming endorsement. Although Trump would say it is, while tossing in a few superlatives like “tremendous” and “unbelievable”! Yawn...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Daughter of former SMAP star Takuya Kimura becomes a model in Japan See in context

Cocomi looks more like her Mom. On the other hand, Koki looks exactly looks like Kimutaku when he was a teenager. Stunning when you see her. Koki will probably be a very popular idol/actor like her father. Cocomi should just enjoy college and do her own thing, like her entrepreneurial momma.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Angry confrontation breaks out after man coughs on Yamanote Line train in Tokyo See in context

Studies have shown an infected or sick adult can project up to 100,000 viruses into the air with every cough, especially a congested cough. But it usually only projects out one meter or less.

A sneeze is much worse from an infected person, projecting out at least half a million virus particles from an average sneeze, with far more velocity. Whenever I hear a sneeze during cold/flu season, I leave that area immediately, especially if it’s a child sneezing. Many parents don’t teach their kids how to control a cough or sneeze these days, which is why you see incidents like this JT story.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Nearly all prefectures shut schools over virus outbreak See in context

Medical staff always use Cold water to wash hands—mmwkdw

No they don’t! I don’t know where you are referring to. I worked in a large ICU unit here in SoCal for 9 years and in public health for over 20 years and never heard that. Water should be at least 38C to help remove grime and oils that allow pathogens to adhere to skin surfaces, and also allow soap to work more effectively. 38C is a public health minimum temp used around the US, whether in a hospital or food service or otherwise. Although I saw many old school MDs forget to wash hands after visiting each patient.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Rare photo of A-bomb split cloud found in Hiroshima See in context

Fadamor and Hide Suzuki argue that the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were solely due to the desire to ward off Soviet ambitions for the Home Islands and to test the effectiveness of nuclear weapons on major population centers. Unfortunately this version of history is largely taught in Japan today, although most Westerners would be surprised at this argument. And well they should, because it is NOT substantiated by any of the massive number of documents available to historians today. Of course there were scientists and some military leaders who had an interest in these outcomes, but documents available from the political and key military leaders show nothing to support this argument.

What is shown in Allied documents is the knowledge that Hiroshima and Nagasaki could be potential staging areas for large numbers of fresh Japanese units that had sat out most of the war in China and Indochina. This is besides the large military industrial base still remaining in major cities such as Kokura, Nagasaki, and Hiroshima. The planned invasion of Kyushu that would start on November 1, 1945, known as Downfall, meant that these large cities would have flattened by conventional bombing prepatory to an invasion of Kyushu, regardless of whether atomic bombs had been available or not. The fact that Kamikaze units and random Imperial naval ships were continuing to attack Allied units towards Okinawa also made southern Japan the primary target for invasion.

The high casualty rate of US forces during Okinawa, combined with the shocking disregard that IJA forces had for local civilians that resulted in massive casualties caught in the crossfire, were major considerations during the planning for Operation Downfall. The expected high casualty rates for Allied invading forces in Kyushu combined with the expected high costs of supplying the invasion, as well as having to rebuild these areas in the post-war (something NEVER considered by revisionists), were all major concerns. The fate of Japanese civilians in Kyushu was also a concern, as Japanese militarists were expected to make civilians part of the resistance to invasion, instead of evacuating them from battle areas. The large caches of deposited WWII weapons and ammunition found to this day in Japanese cities provides evidence of the resistance mentality that Japanese militarists enforced among their civilian populace. This was a no-win situation no matter what the US and their Allies did. Southern Japan would have been destroyed to a greater degree by conventional means during an invasion. The stubbornness of the Japanese militarist faction saw to that.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Abe orders stronger surveillance near disputed isles See in context

The real concerns will start when surveillance is not enough or not working. China will no doubt continue to increase their activity there. So does "respond firmly" imply use of force in the near future?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Mt Fuji may erupt by 2015, says Ryukyu University professor See in context

Guess it's time to visit Fuji-san soon before things take a turn for the worse. Any eruption from a volcano that massive is going to be significant. The concern about lava flows is misplaced though--As with St. Helens, the main worry should be the initial force of super-heated gases and ash from the area where pressure is building. Something to really monitor!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: 4 Chinese ships seen off disputed isles See in context

The difference this time is that there is a "new sheriff in town." How will PM Abe respond to these moves by China?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Suspected norovirus outbreak kills 4 in Yokohama hospital See in context

Kimukuzashiiii: I also don't know why the hospital are apologizing - I agree that there is VERY little they can do once an outbreak starts. Cleaning, handwashing, and disinfecting do nothing to stop Norovirus - alcohol and most cleaning products have no effect on killing norovirus.

I am curious from where you derived your opinions? Because they obviously conflict with what the US Centers for Disease Control advise--That handwashing as a primary method to reduce the spread of Norovirus particles. The goal is to detach the virus from skin and other surfaces, not necessarily kill it on contact. Having visited and observed hospitals in Kinki region, I saw the same problems as in the US hospitals where I have worked--that handwashing was not done frequently enough, especially by older nurses, dietary aides that visit from room to room, and almost all physicians. Lack of time was an excuse most of them provided.

Having a graduate degree in public health and also having worked in school districts, I have seen where frequent handwashing and isolating those infected with norovirus did a lot to slow down its transmission. Touch remains a primary method of transmission for Norovirus. Of course emesis events also need to be dealt with asap. Because Japanese hospitals seem to rely more on a patient's family for their care needs, then families need to be better cautioned also. There are methods practiced in US hospitals that have to deal with MRSA infections that also apply to norovirus situations, but they are more costly and time-consuming, something that not all profit-oriented health organizations want to think about.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Elvis Presley, Beatles top list of most-forged autographs See in context

Celebrity autographs are such a racket that it's best to avoid buying such articles unless there is a photograph accompanying the signature or other documentation, other than a dealer letter, that can show solid provenance. Many celebrities have their assistants learn to forge their signature in order to to save time, so it's quite a chore to verify these things....

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: U.S. Marine arrested in Okinawa for trespassing See in context

For those making excuses for this jerk, usually the objective does not end at the veranda but to go forward and access the residence. Every law enforcement officer worth his salt will assume that potential action. This guy may have known someone who lived there, a possible scenario and something for authorities to consider rather than just assuming he was a wandering "harmless" drunk.

Many guys I knew in the military when drunk were not "harmless" and playful kitties, but potentially hostile and ready to fight. Not the type you want fumbling around your or my residence, or civilians in Japan. Why make excuses for someone who should know well by now both the reaction and penalties for violating the regs? I'm sure there are those who sneak out and drink, but they have learned to be discreet. Obviously this idiot didn't care how his actions affected the overwhelming majority of law-abiding Marines in Okinawa and elsewhere in Japan. He deserves to be reduced in rank and shipped out.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Posted in: Woman arrested for posing as aunt of Newtown massacre victim to con donors See in context

Lowest of the low. People like her have little conscience and deserve the maximum punishment. Did she make bail with her ill-gotten gain?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Okinawa demands investigation into 318 illegal Osprey flights See in context

T-V: Now with this in mind : the military is only obligated to follow the rules when they are practical and do not conflict with mission requirements.

Young man, I both heard and experienced that disclaimer spin many times in the 14 years I served in US Army Combat Arms units, mostly overseas. That statement comes across as arrogant now as it did then, with respect to how we expect other nations to follow an agreement, but then we do entirely as we wish. Try walking in the shoes of the average Japanese some day and see how that feels.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Starbucks Japan reduces amount of brew in some offerings See in context

Starbucks doesn’t offer the short size on its menu in the U.S. where the smallest serving is the tall size.

Take it from a former Starbucks USA vendor, Short size is not on the menu board, but it is offered in most US stores if you ask. I miss the Hojicha tea that is offered in Japanese Starbucks. Nothing like that to be found in US or Euro Starbucks unfortunately.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Profiles of key ministers in Abe cabinet See in context

Looking forward to more verbal gaffes by new Finance Minister Taro Aso. He now inhabits another high profile post and will surely be the focus of Japanese media attention if the Abe Administration policies do not make a significant impact in 2013 as hoped.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Dollar hits new 20-month high, passing 85 yen See in context

semperfi--WELL . .unlike So Korea (Hyundai/ Samsung) and USA (General Motors)- Japan has NOT poured funds or bailed out their auto industry, or any other industry , to stabilize or salvage it from liquidation .

The US Big Three bailout is an ongoing story. So far the result are moderately good and much of the loans are paid back. Killing an industry that has subsequently shown it can fairly recover made no sense, as well as the huge cost of unemployment benefits and other social costs that would have been doled out if the Big Three and their sub-contractors had been allowed to die as Tea Party anarchists wanted.


Different strategies work for different national economies. The hand-up that was extended to the US auto industry and some banks in 2008 has so far worked in good fashion and the US taxpayer continues to be reimbursed . The drop in the value of the Yen, if sustained, is also projected to make US auto manufacturers a bit more profitable than Toyota due to its heavy reliance on overseas sales. Cheers to Japanese monetary easing policies!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Pros dominate YouTube greatest hits in 2012 See in context

It's amazing how pervasive and durable this song/video has been since July--Far beyond whatever Macarena did back in the day. My co-workers just made an end-of-year retrospective video featuring all our staff and the highlight for all viewers was a gangnam style parody. Still hear the song on many radio stations here in Calif. So the phenomenon continues. Sure we'll see the song in a lot of New Years programs too (outside of Japan of course!)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Abe's return in Japan heartens U.S. See in context

An Abe government is not likely to be as sympathetic to Okinawan concerns about the status of US forces there. Perhaps he will try to offer economic incentives instead, but regardless, Abe seems more interested in currying favor with the US to support his foreign policy goals. Any Okinawan issues are likely moving to the back burner. Wonder how they will respond?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: 57 students suffer food poisoning See in context

Cos: They have 70 times the number of food poisoning cases per inhabitants of Japan

That is an inaccurate statement you appear to be pulling out of thin air. As already stated, reported incidents in Japan and most other nations, especially incidents involving only a handful of people, are likely not reported or not followed up. I have grad degrees in Public Health and Health Science, am certified in US as a Food Safety Instructor and have worked as food safety trainer and inspector for food service companies in US and Japan for a decade. I have seen good and bad food safety practices in Japan: Individually owned shops and smaller urban hotels were among the worst offenders, based on observations as a customer and client. Oyajis wiping their nose and mouth during prep or cooking, or smoking in the kitchen and wiping their utensils on dirty towels attached to their waists while preparing food was a common sight especially, but not restricted to Osaka and surrounding cities to include Okayama.

I have evaluated and trained numerous Japanese who work in restaurants on military bases around Japan and often found them below US standards, until they completed our basic food safety training. However Japanese food service managers on bases and in US-concept restaurants on the economy were much better in their practices. Japanese school food services I have visited were also fairly decent, but my main concern was food safety in their supply chain and lack of documented safeguards, compared to US practices.

The cozy relationships seen between government inspectors and the agriculture, fishing, and nuclear industries in Japan, is probably no different when considering prefectural and local inspectors and the food service entities they must evaluate. This may be due to a less confrontational culture versus Western attitudes, but also a habit of avoiding obvious violations for whatever reasons. Clean kitchens in Japan are not so much the issue as how food is protected and how many workers handle food. IMO, food safety standards in Japan (or any other Asian nation) are not consistently enforced to the same degree as they are in California or most other states in the USA.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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