Japan Today

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Posted in: Yen sinks to 153 range against dollar for 1st time in 34 years See in context

Perhaps many who used to holiday in Hawaii will consider some of the amazing Okinawan islands?

A couple years ago, when international travel was still limited due to Covid, this was good advice. But now? As these islands are being flooded with foreign tourists and their money, prices are soaring. So, not only will Japanese be unable to afford international travel, but they will be unable to afford domestic travel as well.

Like in many less developed countries, the only locals you see in the nice resorts are working there as staff. This is Japan's future if people don't get serious and start to address the underlying problems.

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

Posted in: Yen sinks to 153 range against dollar for 1st time in 34 years See in context

I recall scratching my head at the end of last year / beginning of this reading reading of this fanciful notion of yen strength in 2023 thanks to US rate cuts.

I think cuts are inevitable this year, no matter how much they claim otherwise. They will be forced by bankruptcies and the November election. I think they will come as a surprise to most, as well.

But that won't save the yen, which is on the road to oblivion along with many such currencies.

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

Posted in: What advice would you give to someone who shows signs of becoming a stalker to help them stop their obsessive behavior? See in context

Such people have deep-seated mental health issues so the only advice that might help is advising them to get mental health care. Stalking is a symptom of a deeper problem.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Police practice of stopping and questioning comes under media scrutiny See in context

If the law allows such stops, then end of story.

Irrelevant. Even if the law does allow such stops, laws can be changed. If you believe all laws are written in stone and cannot be challenged, there are plenty of authoritarian countries around the world that would welcome you. Slave labor is hard to come by.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Posted in: Happy ABBA-versary! Fans mark 50 years since 'Waterloo' took the world by storm See in context

Completely overhyped trash. Always was, always will be.

And what makes you opinion any better than the millions of people who like them? Have you written any songs that anyone wants to listen to? Are you a respected musician? I am not a fan of Abba but I don't come here just to rag on people who are. They obviously did something very right to achieve the success they did.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Chinese sci-fi fans divided over Netflix's '3 Body Problem' See in context

I turned it off after trying to watch the first episode. The casting made it look like a remake of Friends, but with all the characters portraying attractive and young hipster physicists. Completely unconvincing. The part set in China was very believable, sadly enough, but it seemed the focus was on the Western cast.

I may give it another try, as the GoT producers made a great show as long as they were provided source material. It was only after they ran out of the book material that it tanked. That won't happen here, as the book is finished.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Shizuoka governor to resign after gaffe insulting vegetable sellers See in context

He shows great contempt for those who work in trades, do manual labor...

Considering that these parasite politicians have conned productive members of society into paying for their lavish lifestyles of doing nothing useful, it's no surprise that they hold us in contempt.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Shizuoka governor to resign after gaffe insulting vegetable sellers See in context

Clearly, he's not competent enough to successfully sell vegetables. That's why he went into politics.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Posted in: Big tech told to identify AI deepfakes ahead of EU vote See in context

Rather than accepted countless increasingly oppressive laws people need to learn critical thinking. Such laws will allow disinformation only from authorized sources - so it will still be disinformation, but only from one side.

Critical skills need to be taught early on, but I suspect most of those in charge would prefer the peasants without such skills.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan eyes upgrade of 16 airports, ports for possible defense use See in context

While bases. etc. are great for dilapidated economies like prefectural ones in Kyushu. it seems unfair the poor people will become cannon fodder for the Chinese military. 

Fukuoka is not a dilapidated economy - thriving would be a better word. And nobody wants a potential bombing target in their backyard, whatever the economy.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Man says ‘Sorry, I’m hungry,’ before robbing Gunma convenience store See in context

On two occasions, I offered food to homeless men in Tokyo and both times they said 'eranaiii!

Go figure.

Homeless people have pride as well. A stranger, much less a foreigner, offering unsolicited food is not the best approach. Homeless doesn't equal being a beggar. If you want to help, there are plenty of organizations that seek volunteers and donations.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Plunging births push Japanese diaper maker to switch to adult market See in context

Cancer can partially be down to lifestyle choices but, I may be wrong, it’s ultimately down to genetics. The Japanese may live the longest but their quality of life is poor and maybe their DNA is cancer prone.

Sorry, but anyone can get cancer, and most of us commenting here will as well if we live long enough. Cardiovascular disease is often due to lifestyle choices but cancer has countless causes - many we are completely unaware of. Some people like to believe that if they exercise enough, eat certain kinds of food and take certain supplements they will somehow avoid the inevitable. Better to accept it and be grateful for the healthy years we have. Wearing adult diapers is among the lesser indignities brought by old age.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Sean 'Diddy' Combs' lawyer says raids of his homes were 'excessive' use of 'military-level' force See in context

Not a fan of "Diddy" but the US has long ago gone overboard in military style raids for even the most minor crimes and harmless suspects. Seems they want to instill fear. Been going on for decades now and not enough is being said about it.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Filipino woman admits to killing sister, Japanese niece See in context

The vast majority of US crimes are judged in state and municipal courts, which have the ratios others have cited.

You are excessively minimizing the number of people charged with federal crimes, but let's run with what you said anyway. It's a good thing that the other courts convict less, but not so good when you consider the chances of the average person being arrested and prosecuted in the US is at least 20 or 30 times greater than in Japan. They arrest people willy-nilly over there, like it's no big deal. Would you rather live in a country where almost half of all males can expect to be arrested at least once or in one where arrest is highly uncommon? No need to worry about conviction rates when you are far less likely to be arrested in the first place.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Filipino woman admits to killing sister, Japanese niece See in context

The US rate is not as high as Japan's.

The US and Japan have very different justice systems and are equally bad but in different ways.

Conviction rates by nation (they vary a bit year to year)

Japan - 99.8%

China - 99.9%

US - 80 - 85%

Your figures are wrong, or perhaps they combine federal and state courts. The US conviction rate for federal crimes that are prosecuted is 99.6% Yes, lower than Japan - by a hair.

https://www.pewresearch.org/short-reads/2023/06/14/fewer-than-1-of-defendants-in-federal-criminal-cases-were-acquitted-in-2022/

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Hiroshima grapples with 'Oppenheimer' Oscars success See in context

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has jurisdiction over the definition of “war crime” and does not include the use of nuclear weapons as a war crime.

It does not mention sticks and stones either, yet war crimes can be committed with them. It's not the tool, it's the intent. Generally attacks that target civilian populations, like those in Nagasaki and Hiroshima, are considered war crimes. If, instead, Japan had dropped the atomic bomb on San Francisco and then lost the warm, there is no doubt that they would have been charged with a war crime for doing so. Winning comes with perks.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Filipino woman admits to killing sister, Japanese niece See in context

No system is perfect but Japan's justice system needs radical reform.

People who talk about Japan's 99% conviction rate are usually unaware that the USA federal courts have a rate almost as high. And, worse, most of those cases never go to any real trial but are instead settled by a plea bargain. Many innocent people plead out rather than face the likelihood of getting a much worse prison sentence after a trial they will most likely lose. Justice systems are awful in many countries.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Posted in: Filipino woman admits to killing sister, Japanese niece See in context

I have had money stolen from my bag by Filipino woman while I was sleeping and you cannot trust anyone as majority of them are poor and need money by any means.

Well, it depends on the person and on the circumstances. If some rich westerner pays for a woman to come back to his room, he's fair game because he's a player and it's already obvious the woman is willing to cross certain moral lines. That's the usual way money disappears from someone's room.

On the other hand, murdering your own sister and niece... that's depraved.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: Would a Trump return to the White House after the November election be good news for Japan? See in context

Even his wife hates him.

Must be rough, simping for the wife of a man you hate.

-11 ( +0 / -11 )

Posted in: Hiroshima grapples with 'Oppenheimer' Oscars success See in context

Japan hates Robert Oppenheimer but loves and admires Harry Truman and Douglas MacArthur.

Where on earth did you get that idea? I know for a fact that most Japanese who know anything about history despise Truman. He was a disastrous president whose bloody legacy lives on in SE Asia, Japan and the Middle East.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: 2 dead in Hokkaido avalanche identified as New Zealanders See in context

Sad to see so many heartless responses to this tragedy. Risk is inherent in everything we do, and it's up to each adult to decide what level of risk they want to take. Assuming one makes an informed decision, there is nothing to criticize. One's personal conservative idea of risk should not apply to everyone in the world.

Moreover, complaining about the cost of the rescue even before the bodies have been recovered is heartlessly stingy. Much more money is wasted hourly by government for drinks and kickbacks than on the relatively minor cost of a rescue. Recovering the body of a young woman is hardly an expense anyone should complain about.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: High court commutes death sentence for yakuza boss to life See in context

Even if one is anti-death penalty, this is bad news. The court's decision was made out of fear. No judge in a developed country should be in such fear for his or her life from criminals.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Posted in: Would a Trump return to the White House after the November election be good news for Japan? See in context

It will make very little difference either way. Japan is far too controlled by the US as is, but it's not the president who exercises that control. It's the bankers, military and other entrenched elites. The presidents more or less are constrained by these forces.

Japanese should not waste time thinking about America, but should be thinking about their own country and how it can function better and with more independence to serve the Japanese people, not the global bankers.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Posted in: How to enjoy living alone – it's the coming thing for many of us See in context

Stallions roam free.

Sounds nice, but not true. Horse are social animals and form herds. A lone wild horse will not survive long.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Hiroshima grapples with 'Oppenheimer' Oscars success See in context

It's not about August 6 and 9, 1945 there was another event that happened in December 7, 1941, Pearl Harbor.

Incongruous that people who condemn Israel for its disproportionate response in Gaza think that vaporizing a city full of civilian women and children is a proportionate response to an attack on a military base.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Posted in: What do you think of home schooling? See in context

Sounds like a recipe for a lack of good social adjustment in a child. 

There is no evidence at all that supports that assertion - it's just oft repeated hearsay. I have kids who have gone through the system and others who haven't. I studied the issue and in the process met and learned about enormously successful adults who also didn't attend usual schools (for various reasons). They had a greater tendency to think for themselves and be creative.

That said, not all parents are equipped or able to manage home-schooling. For this, greater support should be given to alternative schools so parents can choose one that fits their child's needs.

The public school systems in most countries are obsolete bureaucracies that harm countless children. Even those who go through successfully would probably have been much better served by an alternative education.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

Posted in: Some people try a calorie-controlled diet and increased physical exercise to lose weight, but without success. What advice would you give them? See in context

Worry less about calories and more what you are putting in your body. Avoid all heavily processed foods, avoid sugar, completely stop consuming any artificial sweeteners (if you really can't resist, even sugar is far better), reduce carbohydrates and grains and eat a balance diet of unprocessed vegetables, proteins and fruits. If done right, counting calories will not be needed.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: With Beyoncé’s foray into country music, the genre may finally break free from stereotypes that have long dogged it See in context

Country goes way back before Johnny Cash and Pete Seeger, people who introduced it to middle class Americans. It was sung by dirt poor people - basically the white version of early blues music. Used great drone effects, could be almost trance-like, and common themes were murder, arrest, prison, alcoholism, death and tragedy.

The modern version is just a commercial form of pop music.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: At 79, Rod Stewart shows no signs of slowing down, with a new swing album with Jools Holland See in context

The Faces were great and he always gave a good show. He also hit on my older sister, who was 14 or 15 at the time. She's pushing 70 now - times flies.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: McCartney reunited with his missing 'Beatlemania' bass guitar See in context

Re: the captioned photo

I hadn't realized that Hofner bass was so attractive. No wonder he was still searching for her 50 years later. I imagine she has a few decades of wear and tear though.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

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