Crikey comments

Posted in: Brutal CIA questioning didn't work, Senate report says See in context

Anybody who thinks the CIA has done a good job post 9-11 is in a very small minority, mainly consisting of previous Directors and their Deputies.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Yomiuri apologizes for using term 'sex slaves' in English edition See in context

Given the long list of documented atrocities perpetrated by the IJA in Asia, I often wonder why so much effort is spent denying this sex slave/comfort women category. Its not possible to rationally defend Japans conduct during he War, there is no exoneration available. So why bother, why focus so much effort on denying this particular type of aggression? I genuinely do not understand this.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: Tokyo governor unveils plan to lure foreign business talent See in context

Trying to establish a special zone for foreigners? What, like Dejima? Thinking really hasn`t progressed very far has it.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan, U.S. trade talks fail to close gap over TPP See in context

I agree with sangetsu03. Price fixing is such an established business practise here. Japanese consumers should be screaming about it, but it doesn`t happen.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Abe hails 'lessons of history' during visit to Anne Frank museum See in context

Hokkaidoboy, your comment is one of the most mixed up I have seen on this site. Okay, so Japan did lots of bad things but at least we never persecuted the Jews. How does that gain you any credit?

25 ( +31 / -7 )

Posted in: Revelry See in context

Classy.....

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Posted in: There’s propaganda to depict Japan in a way that’s far from the truth. There is danger emerging, where such propaganda will have a huge influence on our children’s generation. I would like to think of See in context

Japan doesn`t get to decide when its time to be forgiven its past crimes. It should be able to persuade international opinion given the decades of peace, but not when Abe and crew are busy trying to rewrite history.

That's a lesson Abe and co should try and grasp.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Abe bets U.S. alliance, ratings can weather Yasukuni visit See in context

Markus L - I agree with you. MacArthur was very much focused on rehabilitating Japan after its surrender, not destroying it. But there is little doubt in my mind that here lies the root of China`s strongly held view that Japan has never properly atoned for its past.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: One year after election, Abe has big 'to do' list See in context

I agree with BuBuBu. The politicians are focused on the next 20-30 years - which will probably see them out comfortably. They prefer to run the country into the ground rather than build a sustainable future for the children being born today. Incredibly selfish.

Oh, and any idiot can weaken the yen. Not difficult.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Business lobby seeks to relax rules on foreign household helpers in Japan See in context

Homeland

Domestic help is a HUGE assistance, and it's a more than a little warped that I can hire a small army of foreign staff and sponsor them all, but my Japanese acquaintances cannot. We can really see the consequences; their wives look exhausted and underslept and aging prematurely; I cannot imagine how a household runs without a nurse for the children.

Hahahaha....this is a windup, right? "I cannot imagine how a household runs without a nurse for the children". Indeed, call for Mary Poppins....And you can hire an army of domestic helpers, can you? - you must be an Ambassador at least.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Obama leads world tributes at Mandela memorial See in context

Surprised Abe-san did not attend.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Instructional video promotes public baths to foreign visitors See in context

Diving back into the discussion (haha) I conclude that pre-washing is a Rule for foreigners, but completely optional for Japanese. At the gym today I saw 5 older gents, all took the option of not washing first. Nice. My next trip I plan to work up a massive sweat and then dive right in to see who complains. Just to test the point, you understand. I will obviously have a thorough wash afterwards, as I will need it.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Posted in: Abe defends state secret law, but says he could have explained it better See in context

This Law is in force from this Friday 13 December. Time to take a minute and ask ourselves exactly why this has been rushed through so fast. I think we should be concerned.

14 ( +16 / -2 )

Posted in: Japan's secrecy bill condemned by Nobel academics See in context

Homeland, I cannot argue that the LDP won the last election and therefore they are the current Government. Where I do have an issue is that in campaigning in late 2012 we heard plenty about what is now called Abenomics and the Three Pillars. In fact they couldn`t tell us enough information on that.

If my memory serves, we did NOT hear anything about a new secrecy bill. Because the LDP knows that, even in a relatively obedient democracy like Japan, this is still a very sensitive subject. And a public discussion would not have helped the LDP into power. So is this secrecy law the result of a democratic process? I would say no. Legal, yes; democratic, no. It`s been crashed through in to law in 4 weeks. Not enough public engagement, no clarifty on safeguards, supervision etc etc. Its a bad law.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Japan's secrecy bill condemned by Nobel academics See in context

Homeland, I am afraid your faith in the good intentions of Government is misplaced. If Assange and Snowden have taught us anything, it is that whatever nasty stuff you imagine Government might be doing, they WILL be be doing it - only 10 times worse.

15 ( +17 / -2 )

Posted in: Diet passes controversial secrets law despite protests See in context

The US and Europe allowed draconian legislation to be passed by their Governments post 9-11 without adequate safeguards. More than a decade later, largely due to Assange, Snowden and others opening peoples eyes to what use Government is making of their powers, the secrecy and security framework could and should be up for review. Maybe its too late to reverse the trend, but lets be very clear. To date, there has been no public discussion in the West of the need for security and secrecy, and how to balance that with the need for transparency and with peoples right to privacy. So far we have been sleep walking and have given up most of our right to know what our Governments are doing. None of the countries concerned are emerging with any credit post Snowden.

As was noted above, it`s worrying to see Japan head blindly into this without any attempt at engaging the public, and having any clarity on what safeguards and oversight will be in place.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Japanese cuisine added to world heritage list See in context

A quick look at the Unesco website indicates that any traditional practice, anywhere in the world, could get this status - always assuming that somebody can be bothered to nominate. For example, I liked shrimp fishing on horsebank in Belgium. Or carol singing in Moldova. Or the history and use of the abacus in China. Or traditional winemaking in Georgia. Think of your own countries and I am sure you can come up with several things that would probably qualify.

Dolphin hunting and whaling probably wouldn`t make it though.....

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Tempers flare in Diet over state secrets bill See in context

Good to see the Opposition finally wake up, but all too little and too late unfortunately.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Posted in: Instructional video promotes public baths to foreign visitors See in context

The "wash before entering" rule is rarely followed by Japanese men, in my experience. A very quick splash from the onsen bucket and in they get. A thorough body was might happen afterwards. Its quite put me off getting in myself, to be honest - especially when I caught some older guy doing the splits in the tub as part of his routine.....

12 ( +16 / -4 )

Posted in: Gov't to end production quotas for rice See in context

This is just an exercise in smoke and screens for the TPP negotiations, so Japan can keep existing tarrifs on agricultural products, but beg for patience and time that things will change.

Very much agreed. As usual, not all is at it seems. Hayashi-san (Agriculture Minister) said yeterday that a fund will be established to support agricultural infrastructure in villages particularly affected by the change (i.e. all of them). So things go - its change but nowhere near as dramatic as you might think. Those votes in the countryside are important, still.

There is no way that Japan can be self sufficient in food, unless the population declines by more than half.

Thats just a matter of time according to the demographics.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Posted in: Paul McCartney to kick off Japan tour on Monday See in context

I think all the while ageing artists can perform, fine. But if you`ve heard him recently you may think it is probably time. Same with the Rolling Stones. And Bon Jovi. And many others.

Let`s be honest, in Beatle-obsessed Japan people would pay 20,000 yen to see Paul McCartney, whether he sang or not.

So yes, I think Sir Paul would do better to stay at home and count his GBP700m. I personally won`t be adding to that pile of cash this time around.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Paul McCartney to kick off Japan tour on Monday See in context

With the money he has, and the age he is, I think he should be paying us to listen to him!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Rakuten CEO slams Abenomics failure over online drug sale limits See in context

Mikitani is right to highlight any backsliding. The commitment is for deregulation, greater competition, less cosy price fixing - all of which should bring benefits to the consumer. If we can`t get this done for something non-controversial like non-prescription drugs, then what can we get it done for? (I think I know the answer and it is not encouraging)

8 ( +12 / -4 )

Posted in: Hyatt Regency in Tokyo admits mislabeling prawns on menu See in context

I think this is happening everywhere in Japan. I have serious doubts about labels regarding country of origin, the area in the country, whether its organic etc etc. Basically because unless the restaurant poisons somebody, there is no policing and no punishment. Lying to your customers (since 2008 in this case) deserves a hefty punishment.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Late arrival See in context

Might have been cheaper to take the Lear jet.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: Yen gains in Asia after BOJ policy moves See in context

Haha. Mr Abe, saying that you want the yen to weaken does not necessarily make it happen.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: 5-year-old girl in serious condition after being hit by car at crossing in Chiba See in context

A huge number of people lose their lives, or have those lives ruined, in road traffic accidents very year. A few examples - in 2010 in Japan the number outright fatalities were 5,745. In 2011 in the UK it was 1,901 killed and a staggering 23,122 seriously injured. So unfortunately rather more than one every single day. In any given country it is several, every single day.

This type of case simply doesn`t make it into the national media in the UK, the US etc etc unless there were multiple fatalities or some other factor considered newsworthy. Unfortunately there are too many accidents to report.

Drivers here may be marginally more accident prone here than a few countries, but are actually better in relative terms than others. The data is public record. I suspect that Japan Today sometimes likes to pander to its readers prejudices.

Best wishes to the victim in this case, I hope she recovers quickly.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Odor-eliminating underpants a hot seller See in context

I can see lots of fun testing this - you know, head out for a curry and some beers and then next morning we'll see if this works or not!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: How companies go about forcing employees to quit See in context

This article is written as if employees have no choice but to mooch about at their lifetime employer waiting for the axe to fall. Not a healthy way to think.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Pressure on Japan for stronger laws on child pornography See in context

Reasonable article, I thought, as I read this - surely nobody would have a problem with bringing laws in Japan in line with the rest of the world, especially in the horrible area of child porn. Wrong!! Step up "Fridaythe13th" just to prove me wrong. Leave Japan alone you say - jeez.

7 ( +17 / -10 )

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