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cleo comments

Posted in: Should married couples in Japan be allowed to have different family names? Survey investigates See in context

A closer look at the Constitution;

*Article 13.** All of the people shall be respected as individuals. Their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness shall, to the extent that it does not interfere with the public welfare, be the supreme consideration in legislation and in other governmental affairs.*

*Article 14.** All of the people are equal under the law and there shall be no discrimination in political, economic or social relations because of race, creed, sex, social status or family origin.*

*Article 24.** Marriage shall be based only on the mutual consent of both sexes and it shall be maintained through mutual cooperation with the equal rights of husband and wife as a basis.*

With regard to choice of spouse, property rights, inheritance, choice of domicile, divorce and other matters pertaining to marriage and the family, laws shall be enacted from the standpoint of individual dignity and the essential equality of the sexes.

I can't find any mention at all of 'husband and wife must share the same family name'. It looks like it can all be sorted through ordinary legislation, no need at all for any constitutional amendments.

Apart from the bit about marriage being between both sexes; the same-sex marriage crowd have a tougher hill to climb.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Should married couples in Japan be allowed to have different family names? Survey investigates See in context

how can it be changed without amending the Constitution?

Easy. Amend the constitution. It isn't written in stone.



Article 96. Amendments to this Constitution shall be initiated by the Diet, through a concurring vote of two-thirds or more of all the members of each House and shall thereupon be submitted to the people for ratification, which shall require the affirmative vote of a majority of all votes cast thereon, at a special referendum or at such election as the Diet shall specify.

Amendments when so ratified shall immediately be promulgated by the Emperor in the name of the people, as an integral part of this Constitution.


It's only been around since the end of the war, anyway. The ink is barely dry.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Demand for pets to be in plane cabins has increased after the Haneda airport runway collision on Jan 2. What's your stance on this? See in context

I would never take a pet on an aeroplane, they are not made to be kept in enclosed spaces for prolonged periods of time. If they're shoved in the hold as baggage the flight is a terrifying experience for them, and we see what happens when the plane has to be evacuated quickly (also problems of heat stroke/freezing, depending on the season). If they're kept in the cabin, in addition to the animal-haters, dander-sufferers and those poor souls simply not used to being near animals, there is the problem of how, when and where the animal is going to eliminate - on a flight of several hours, several times.

And as Batman points out, in an emergency when all around are panicking there's no knowing how even a well-trained dog is going to react.

No need to torture the animal, leave him with a trusted friend or reputable pet hotel when you go on holiday. If you're moving house long-distance, then someone needs to make the journey overland with the animal.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: Rumors that Ukraine's top commander may be dismissed expose rifts in Ukraine top brass See in context

 there could be another coup d'état at this rate

Impossible for there to be 'another' coup d'etat, since there was no first one.

The military is really the last independent branch of government not totally subjugated and subservient to Zelensky.

Unlike in russia, where everything is totally subjugated and subservient to the tzar and even hinting 'I don't agree with Putin' can get you a jail sentence or a trip out of a high window or invited to play with live genades in a plane flying over Tver Oblast.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: Charges dropped against group that allegedly broke into vending machine after Noto earthquake See in context

Or maybe, you've stocked up already with an emergency supply of bottled water and foods ? Or perhaps, you will keep a stash of cash around the house ?

None of which would be of any use to you if the house has collapsed and the water/food/cash is under a ton of rubble.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Man sentenced to death for Kyoto Animation arson attack See in context

I do not not agree with the death penalty, but it in some cases it is deserved.

You mean, you do agree with the death penalty.

a uniquely European way of thinking

You seem to think that's a bad thing?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Ukraine says it has no evidence for Russia's claim that dozens of POWs died in shot down plane See in context

does that sound like something Russia would do?

Yes, it's par for the course.

We have all seen the bodies, so there is that.

We have??

If there is one thing that nobody can accuse Russians of, it is mistreatment of POWs.

Silly me, didn't realise you were being satiric.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Posted in: Man sentenced to death for Kyoto Animation arson attack See in context

What Aoba did was barbaric.

The death penalty is barbaric.

Two wrongs do not make a right.

-12 ( +15 / -27 )

Posted in: Russia bars pro-peace candidate from presidential ballot See in context

This is not news, It was clear on the day she announced her candidacy, that she would not be allowed to run.

Putin must be going soft, though; a simple barring of her application, on whatever dubious, transparently trumped-up basis, is preferable to an accidental slip out of a 7th-floor window, or a cup of polonium tea. ("You are a young woman, you have everything ahead of you." is a clear warning.)

She's getting off lightly.

Not that she had any chance of winning she were allowed to run; the results are already decided, 95% for Putler on a 120% turnout, including all the russian men who left the country; those now living and working overseas after dodging the draft, and those preparing push up sunflowers in Ukraine.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

Posted in: What are your fondest childhood memories of Christmas? See in context

Standing at the top of the stairs with my brothers at 4 in the morning every year, while Dad crept downstairs 'to see if he's been yet'.

He never came before 7, so we always had to go back to bed for a few more hours.

When I was older, staying up late on Christmas Eve helping my parents set up a model train set for my kid brother, who still believed in Father Christmas. Or pretended he did, anyway.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Love it or hate it, self-checkout is here to stay, but it's going through a reckoning See in context

When buying a train ticket, you can press the button for the ticket and then insert the money after, or vice versa; there are no extra 'confirm' buttons. You don't have to specifically tell it how you're paying; you just put money in the slot. Everything is quick and snappy and all the extra interactions are optional.

Or you can use one of the payment cards, either as a card or as a code on your phone/watch. No detouring to the ticket machine, no buttons to press, no money to fiddle with. Quicker and snappier, just wave the card/code as you sail through the turnstile.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Strikes on Kyiv injure dozens as Ukraine pleads for aid See in context

I call on both sides to sit down and talk like men 

The problem with that is that the aggressor is not a man but a gremlin who targets children and civilians. He cannot be reasoned with. He cannot be trusted.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Posted in: Character for tax (税) picked as kanji of 2023 See in context

nothing changes, noone pays more, noone pays less.

I disagree.

Since the 'inbois seido' came into effect companies that used to pay me in round sums, always rounding up so that the pre-income tax figure ended in a couple of 0s, now send me invoices that give figures down to the last yen. Our local tofu vendor who comes round once a week complains that he needs to prepare a bagful of one-yen coins to give out detailed change that wasn't necessary before when prices were rounded off to the nearest ten yen. Our local supermarket has started adding the consumption tax on at the end instead of including it in the price.

While someone may be paying less, obviously someone is definitely paying more somewhere, and I reckon it's the little guy, as always; The small businesses, the end customer.

Not to mention all the extra paperwork involved in keeping track of all those loose yen.

As for the kanji in the photo - what a mess! Couldn't they find a proper calligrapher to write it neatly without splashing ink al over the place?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Shohei Ohtani has agreed to a record $700 million, 10-year deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers, making him the highest-paid athlete in history. Is any sports star worth that much money? See in context

As others have said, he throws a ball, hits a ball wth a stick and runs round a field.

I suppose some people find that as entertaining as watching folk sing and dance on stage, or watching blockbuster films.

Personally I don't see it, but obviously there are those who do, plenty of them.

Good luck to him I suppose.

Wouldn't it be nice if he donated some of it, say half, to good causes? He wouldn't even notice.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Posted in: To phase out or phase down fossil fuels? That is the question at COP28 climate talks See in context

he had a meteor knock the crap out of it wiping almost all life and an ice age. So I think we will be fine.

You do understand that that meteor killed off the dinosaurs, the dominant genus at the time? Now we are the dominant ones and in line to get killed off, or rather, kill ourselves off.

Some tiny overlooked insect or marsupial might survive to evolve into the next major lifeforms to take over the earth, but homo sapiens will be toast. We will not be 'fine'.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Princess Aiko turns 22, balancing studies with official duties See in context

She should be eligible to ascend to Empress

I wonder if she would want to.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Posted in: Kishida pledges to do utmost to tackle negative impact of price hikes See in context

Zero percent tax on foodstuffs and other essentials such as children's shoes, clothes, etc.

Make up the difference by raising the top tiers of income tax.

Scrap tax exemptions on religious organisations and the like.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Posted in: Woman attacked by 3 hunting dogs in Shiga Prefecture See in context

I said, while playing. You don't play tug-o-war with your dog?

You reach him the rules before you start playing.

if you can't leave a dog alone with another person in a room because it will immediately attack them, then sorry, but that's a bad dog

We're talking about toddlers. If you can't leave your toddler alone with a dog in a room because it will, if not immediately, at some point, think it might be fun to pull the dog's tail, or twist his ears, or try to ride him like a hobby horse, is that a 'bad toddler'? No, it's just a toddler doing things he thinks are fun. Not fun for the dog.

I repeat, toddlers and dogs should never be left alone together. Not the sweetest little toddler, not the most laid-back, non-aggressive dog ever. Not because either of them are 'bad', but because it's an incident waiting to happen.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Woman attacked by 3 hunting dogs in Shiga Prefecture See in context

Which makes them bad owners

Clueless, more likely.

how do you train a dog out of previously unseen behaviours? You need to know what needs correcting in order to correct it.

You don't wait until something needs correcting, you train proactively for every situation the dog is likely to encounter, and shield him from the encounters you judge he won't be able to handle.

if it's not an aggressive dog, why would you pay extra attention to train non-aggression?

To make sure it doesn't turn into an aggressive dog.

Ever tried, while playing, to take a stick away from a dog that doesn't want to let it go? It's pretty hard, no matter how quickly you grab hold of it yourself.

By brute strength, yes, difficult if not impossible. The trick is to train the dog to give you the stick, before he learns that you can't wrestle it from him. Trying to snatch the stick from under his nose is just asking for a bite, even if it's sheer reflex wth no aggression intended. Offer him a treat in exchange for the stick, and after he's enjoyed the treat, give him back the stick so that he learns you're not going to confiscate his stuff.

Two years is plenty of time for a dog to get used to a child

It's also plenty of time for a previously mollycoddled, centre-of-attention dog to build up resentment at being ousted by the newcomer(s). If the parents had left the dogs alone with a two-year-old 'many times' then yes, the parents were lucky until the time they tragically weren't. Every dog has a history of not biting - until it bites. And it's up to the adults to make sure that the dog has neither reason nor chance to make history.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Woman attacked by 3 hunting dogs in Shiga Prefecture See in context

Now either the good, responsible owners became bad, clueless owners overnight, or the dogs simply reverted to their baser instincts and went into attack mode.

Or the owners had previously been lucky in that a trigger they had not accounted for, had not been pressed in the preceding years.

Your first link states that 'The dog was "severely injured and beyond help" in the attempts to rescue the 4-year-old', which suggests that no adult was close enough to the child and dog to intervene immediately and that drastic action was taken when the attack was already under way. Never, ever leave a toddler and dog alone, no matter how well behaved the dog. If you leave two human toddlers to their own devices, at some point they're going to have an 'incident'; it's not so much reverting to baser instincts, as what toddlers do. And dogs are basically just four-legged toddlers. The adults need to be in charge.

Your second link reads to me - though not enough detail is given, of course - of two dogs of long standing having their place in the adults' affections 'usurped' by the two more recent additions. Again, toddlers and dogs...they need very, very careful supervision.

Both of these incidents are of course tragic, all the more so since they could probably have been avoided.

If you're thinking of starting a family, choose a dog breed that is kid-friendly. And watch the kids and the dogs like a hawk.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Woman attacked by 3 hunting dogs in Shiga Prefecture See in context

Dogs artificially breed over decades to kill should be banned

specifically bred to be aggressive and fight.

Bred by humans.

I agree the irresponsible and sometimes malicious breeding of animals should be banned, made a criminal offence.

But it isn't the dogs' fault. They didn't ask to be bred the way they were, they didn't ask to be trained into offensive weapons.

The penalty for specifically breeding or training animals to be aggressive, apart from jail time, hefty fines and a daily good hard thwack up the back of the head, should include the cost of appropriately homing, feeding and caring for the animals for the rest of the natural lives.

Bears are killed after they attack humans because of the mistaken belief that they 'acquire a taste for human flesh.' Why not dogs?

As you note, killing the bear is a mistake. It's just being a bear.

A dog is a reflection of its owner. Show me a bad dog and I'll show you a clueless owner who couldn't be bothered or didn't know how to care for and train the dog properly; or an irresponsible moron who deliberately trained his dog to be a problem.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Woman attacked by 3 hunting dogs in Shiga Prefecture See in context

There are no bad dogs, only bad owners.

The intrepid hunter, training his dogs to attack wildlife. Then act surprised when they attack a corgi. How are the dogs supposed to know the difference?

Punish the intrepid hunter, ban him from ever owning animals again, take his hunting license off him (assuming he even has one) and make sure he pays all medical and vet fees to the lady and her corgi. Plus a hefty compensation.

Take the dogs off him and see they get adequate training from a real professional before they are rehomed.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan zoo worker dies after apparent lion attack See in context

You'd think people working with potentially dangerous animals would be obliged to work in teams of two or more, to prevent just this kind of situation.

Poor man.

Poor lion.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Posted in: Trudeau apologizes for recognition of Nazi unit war veteran in Canadian Parliament See in context

What side he was on?

The wrong side.

Are you seriously trying to make up excuses?

No. No excuses. I stated clearly that the Speaker of the House of Commons should have checked his facts before embarrassing himself. And the other members of the House should have been able to trust his judgement.

This man, his SS group were trying to kill Zelensky's grandfather who was fighting in the Soviet Army!

And Anthony Rota should have got his facts straight, should not have drawn attention to Hunka, should not have called him a hero.

I repeat, there was no hate crime here, just stupidity and gullibility.

look up the atrocities that the Galicia SS did to polish civilians 

No argument at all with you on that.

Remember that until 1941 half of Poland was under USSR control, complete with show elections, annexation, deportations, political murders and summary executions.

Saying that one side was bad doesn't mean that the other side were angels.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Posted in: Scientists warn entire branches of 'Tree of Life' are going extinct See in context

Do you think modern humans would be less capable of survival?

Probably as capable of survival as the dinosaurs were last time? Most of them died out, but the direct descendants of a few dinosaurs remain.

For example, chickens. Birds are descended from theropods, a group of two-legged dinosaurs whose members included the tyrannosaurus rex and the smaller velociraptors. From king of the ancient world (tyrannosaurus) to the Colonel's main ingredient. Some legacy.

So modern humans, if any did survive, might follow a similar evolutionary path; becoming smaller and weaker, and prey to whatever species won the evolution lottery next time round.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Trudeau apologizes for recognition of Nazi unit war veteran in Canadian Parliament See in context

The USSR started off being on the side of the nazis and then switched sides. Easy to be confused as to whether and/or when they were goodies or baddies.

Ukraine in the 1930s had plenty of experience of just how bad it was to be under the USSR yoke; not surprising if some of them reasoned that, if they had to take sides, the nazis couldn't be any worse.

If in today's atmosphere a supposedly responsible lawmaker introduces a person as 'a war hero who fought for Ukraine', then most people in the moment would probably clap. But as they say, the devil is in the details.

There was no 'hate crime' here. Just a bunch of people being too trusting of one of their own, who should have known better. The Speaker of the House of Commons should have checked his facts before embarrassing himself and his fellows.

Did Yaroslav Hunka make it clear to the Speaker which side he was on in WW2?

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Posted in: Trudeau apologizes for recognition of Nazi unit war veteran in Canadian Parliament See in context

Every single clapping seal in the Canadian Parliament who stood up on cue once they heard "this Ukrainian man fought against Russia" should face hate crimes charges as well.

For being misled?

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Posted in: City in Nagasaki Pref decides against applying for gov't survey on nuclear waste site See in context

*The radioactive waste needs to be stored in safe containers. Not dumped. Probably several hundred meters underground. Island needs to *safe from earthquakes and tsunami

So, nowhere in Japan, then?

I cannot get my head around the fact that some folk think it's in any way a good idea to build nuclear power plants anywhere in the Ring of Fire.

Sheer lunacy.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Posted in: Scientists warn entire branches of 'Tree of Life' are going extinct See in context

I seem to recall there having been global mass-extinction level events in Earth's past. Yet, here we are.

Good point. We already survived a big one.

We'll figure this one out;

The last global mass extinction event happened 66 million years ago and killed off the dinosaurs. We as in the human race, didn't survive anything since we weren't around at the time; our earliest vaguely humanoid ancestors didn't even appear, in the form of homo habilis, until somewhere around 2.4 million years ago. Their earliest ancestors, the group of apes known as hominids, split from the chimps and bonobos some 7 million years ago.

So no, if we engineer ourselves a mass extinction event as we seem set on doing, there will be nothing to 'figure out'; we'll be gone, as dead as the dinosaurs. And Mother Earth will take her time, millions of years, evolving hopefully something a bit more intelligent than sapiens.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Posted in: U.S., S Korea, Japan raise concerns over Russia-N Korea military cooperation See in context

some might say western Ukraine invaded eastern Ukraine following the coup of 2014

And some might say the Moon is made of green cheese and wears a straw hat.

And they'd be just as wrong.

Western Ukraine did not invade eastern Ukraine.

There was no coup in 2014.

The russian puppet Yanukovych tried to renege on his election promise to sign an agreement between Ukraine and the EU in favour of closer ties to russia, and in the face of public outrage fled to russia.

Following that, little green men in fatigues with no insignia crossed the border from russia into eastern Ukraine and stirred up a bunch of malcontents, giving them weapons and supporting them in a takeover of government buildings.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

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