davidattokyo comments

Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

It comes from the freezers, mostly.

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Posted in: N Korean leader Kim Jong-Il dead at 69 See in context

Today is primarily a day of hoping for the emancipation of North Korea's innocent people. Who knows? Maybe Swiss educated Jong Un can do the business and lead NK forward. Even their army heads will be living better lives if they embrace the international community over isolation. They'll all have iPhones, Kindle, Samsung electronics, and better food and housing.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

SwissToni,

It's the efficacy and need for that research that is in doubt.

Only in doubt by anti-whalers.

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Posted in: Britain hits back at 'unacceptable' French comments See in context

Clegg told Francois Fillon to “calm the rhetoric” after France had further fuelled ...

With all the F's in there I was sure he actually told Francois to do something else... ah well

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Posted in: Tokyo shares seen rangebound next week See in context

It's standard market speak to describe price action that it not trending up nor down but basically going sideways, within range...

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Posted in: Anti-nuclear protest See in context

Good to see Greenpeace protesting about something that matters, rather than just mindlessly fund-raising.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

SwissToni,

I believe the data gathered is a byproduct of a commercial hunt, rather than the meat a byproduct of a scientific hunt.

People have the freedom of belief, but Japan's activities are consistent with the whaling convention requirements, and the Article VIII requirements completely override the "moratorium" on commercial catches.

Importantly there are material differences between the whaling of the commercial days versus the special permit days. "Commercial whaling in disguise" is but a anti-whaling perspective, but it is certainly not the only perspective, and certainly not the perspective most consistent with the facts.

I doubt that. I dont see such a judgement reducing the barbarity of the hunt.

A lot of people (such as myself, formerly) don't have a problem with whaling except when it is (thought to be) unsustainable or illegal. Although you claim to buy into the barbarity argument, not all the anti-whalers do. You yourself noted that all anti-whalers can't be classified as having exactly the same views on this.

I think it would spur them on to get a change in the law.

Some other people show humility when they are proven to be wrong - being able to admit I was wrong was why I am no longer an anti-whaler - but even if there weren't such people as this... I recommend you don't hold your breath. It's not easy for international law to be changed as you desire. After all, that's why the anti-whalers subverted the whaling convention in the first place, rather than simply change it to be an anti-whaling convention.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

cleo,

The problem is that they say they need to kill them to find out how many there are, and then they justify how many they try to kill by saying there are enough for them to kill that many.

You are off the mark on this point.

Abundance estimates are made by sightings surveys. And we know there are some hundreds of thousands.

Trends in abundance are determined through population modelling.

The biological samples are taken for the purpose of investigating these trends in abundance.

I trust you are clear on this now, even though you don't like whaling or related research.

Censuses of people are only done once every ten years - but they need to do a census of whales every year?

A census is different from a sample, I'm sure you know this already so I need not explain further.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

OssanAmerica,

Sooner or later those "others" are going to have to grow up.

Harsh :) There are some hardened types ($$C$ supporters for example) who seem to feel some kind of increased self-worth through being anti-whaling (thus violence and disrespect of the law becomes justifiable), whereas I believe the majority are simply good people who have been misled by the commercial anti-whaling propaganda machine. I was such myself originally, and it was only the overt racism towards the Japanese that I perceived in my local media at the time that triggered me to consider things from an independent perspective. I suspect an International Court of Justice ruling in favour of Japan will act as such a trigger for a great many such anti-whalers, who like me, do respect the law.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

The Japanese whalers arguments have been demonstrated as a ploy to continue commercial whaling.

Dream on. That remains but an "argument" Australia has taken to the International Court of Justice, and one that will fail given, amongst other things, 1) the clear object and purpose of the whaling convention and 2) the material differences between the former commercial whaling and current Article VIII special permit operations.

In truth theyre always going to be vilified as long as they are in conflict with others wishes. Win or lose the ICJ case, or the suit in the US.

Vilified by you and the likes of $$C$ perhaps, who have no respect for any law that doesn't suit.

But as for other anti-whalers, such evidently baseless vilification has great potential to break these fundamentally fair-minded people away from the shackles of the commercial anti-whaling industry propaganda. (I know this from experience, being a converted anti-whaler myself.)

the Japanese whalers have spent many years trying and failing to win the moral high ground

They have the moral high ground, what they have lacked is the political nouse of the Norwegians.

Yours and Ossanamerica's seems to he the legality, never mind the morality.

Our personal morality is meaningless, and mine is neither more nor less than yours. Legality is what matters in international disputes. Most people respect the law, even if some people don't.

there you go agin trying to give people a simple label.

You described the Article VIII as a "get out of jail free card". Such a characterisation can only be valid if one is looking at the issue from the context of the idea that "whaling is/should be banned". That is why anti-whalers describe what is an actual part of the whaling convention as a "loophole". It can only be regarded as a "loophole" if one ignores the whaling convention itself except for the "moratorium". This is like selective quoting, and why this is flawed thinking. The truth may hurt, don't shoot the messenger...

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

The other is conducted simply to gather data. The clause in the IWC regulations requiring whales not be wasted is Japan's whalers 'get out of jail free' card.

The reason that anti-whalers look at it from this perspective is because they wish to believe that there is a permanent ban on whaling. However legally the moratorium is temporary and furthermore subordinate to the whaling convention, thus such an interpretation is flawed both legally and in reality.

For it is natural that a whaling convention that allows for essentially unregulated scientific catches up to the discretion of the contracting government to at least require that those whales taken be utilised fully, in accordance with the spirit of the notion of optimum utilisation of whale resources.

Anti-whalers pretend the "optimum utilisation of whale resources" purpose of the whaling convention does not exist, and hence have found themselves lost on a tangent.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

SwissToni,

The issue of Japans whalers true motives is to be aired at the ICJ soon.

Indeed we conservationists, who understand what the purpose of the whaling convention is, feel this day can't come soon enough.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

herefornow,

If Japan could make a plausible argument that hunting whales in the Southern Ocean was critically important to their food stock or even their culture, then they might get some sympathy

Hey there is an "international convention for the regulation of whaling".

Is international law being on their side not enough for you?

If these nations have a problem with the convention, they should withdraw from it.

But not withdrawing from it, and demanding Japan opt to not exercise it's rights under it, is just plain silly and unbecoming of proper sovereign states.

The purpose of the research is not research in an of itself. The research is of the nature required by the whaling commission to fulfill it's mandate of optimum utilisation of whale resources.

But that sort of rational logic does not work in Japan, where the "we are Japan, we are different, leave us alone" attitude

Eating whales is different to those nations that killed whales for oil primarily, and yes this diversity ought to be tolerated. Fascism is bad don't you know.

So you, Ossan and others can argue all you want about Japan's "right" to conduct the hunt, and ignore the fact that it is badly losing the world-wide PR game on this

If western PR is your priority gee then I guess I can see what you value in the world. Time for Japan to stop whaling and get Kim Kardashian over here quick!

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

OssanAmerica,

A moment of thought suggests that the anti-whaling nations are in conflict with the IWC charter to start with and they should not even be members. Perhaps they should start an Anti-IWC where their regulations will apply soleley to their members.

Indeed the reason they don't quit and draft an anti-whaling convention is because they know they can best fulfill their political objective of obstructing the rights of other nations by behaving in bad faith at the whaling commission.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

The US uses the Pelly Amendment to try to bully whaling nations, but it has never worked. Sustainable whaling doesn't detract from the IWC's conservation program at all, sustainable whaling is by definition compatible with conservation.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

globalwatcher,

Japan needs to justify the reason of 850/annually caught whales for "somewhat elementary level" research purpose.

Japan is legally entitled to catch as many whales for research purposes as it "thinks fit" (see the whaling convention).

As a sample size, 850 is hardly unusual. They could be catching 200 is there'd still be people (without any knowledge of the research or it's purpose) saying that it was too many. It's not the number they are really complaining about, they just don't like whaling per se.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

cleo,

They aren't sampling them in numbers that would threaten the health of the stocks. The 850 minke quota compares with estimated abundance of some hundreds of thousands

They're supposedly 'sampling' them to determine the health of the stocks, so that's a totally round-about argument.

No, it isn't. We are talking what is essentially standard fisheries stock assessment methodology. Isn't your "whaling is inhumane" argument good enough? You detract from your position with weak psuedo-science comments like this, just sayin'.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

Neneswsw,

the fact that Japan is catching around (or just less than) a thousand whales a year is worrisome.

They aren't sampling them in numbers that would threaten the health of the stocks. The 850 minke quota compares with estimated abundance of some hundreds of thousands. We conservationists would not support it if this were not the case.

And the numbers are increasing each year too.

No they don't, actually. The original JARPA program had a quota of approx 400 +/- 10% IIRC, and JARPA II from 05/06 is for 850 +/- 10%. Some NGOs may make the claim that quotas increase each year, but that's just a big fat lie.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

RevHead,

what i don't understand there is a report somewhere from Japan Fisheries i think that says there is tonnes of this whale meet stored in freezers not being consumed, so why the need for more???

It does get consumed, that's why it is stored in freezers. There are millions of tonnes of product in storage in Japan, whale makes up but a tiny insignificant fraction of this.

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

m5c32,

BUT, it's a legal loophole.

It's just plain legal.

If nations were serious about this being a really important issue they'd close that loophole.

It's not a loophole. It's an explicit part of the whaling treaty. The treaty can't be changed without the assent of all states adhered to it, and there are many that would reject the deletion of Article VIII of the whaling convention. (Doing that would be akin to abolishing the "scientific basis" principle that is supposed to underlie all whaling management decisions, which in practice is ignored due to the intransigence of the anti-whaling nations).

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Posted in: U.S., Australia, NZ 'disappointed' over Japan whale hunt See in context

“We are deeply concerned that confrontations in the Southern Ocean will eventually lead to injury or loss of life among protesters, many of whom are nationals of our countries, and whaling crews,” they said.

Yet none of them do anything about the eco-terrorists who have created this situation...

Commercial whaling is banned under an international treaty but Japan has since 1987 used a loophole to carry out “lethal research” on the creatures in the name of science.

The media is forever parroting the commercial anti-whaling industry propaganda like this. Hopefully they will finally take note when the ICJ rules against Australia in their case against the Japanese, and change their boilerplate whaling articles accordingly thenceforth.

The four nations hit out at Japan’s claim it is carrying out research, saying they “wish to emphasize that lethal techniques are not required in modern whale conservation and management.”

Politicians posing as scientists! The IWC's own scientific committee utilises biological data provided by Japan's research precisely because no feasible or viable non-lethal alternatives exist.

“We will continue to engage on this matter,” the four nations pledged, reaffirming their commitment to the “global moratorium on commercial whaling.”

Where is their commitment to the whaling convention?

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Posted in: Japan whaling authorities sue Sea Shepherd in U.S. See in context

The 1930s whaling convention is relevant as it puts the ongoing question of trust in context.

If I were 96 years old, and oblivious to recent history, I guess I would agree.

All said and done, I think Dotobock's comments about opposition being unscientific and emotional is pretty much spot on myself, and I know you and I aren't going to agree. You regard whaling as inhumane and risky, whereas I regard it as more humane holistically than farming animals and entirely reasonable from a risk perspective. Until next time.

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Posted in: Japan whaling authorities sue Sea Shepherd in U.S. See in context

I leave it to the reader to judge how relevant the actions of 1930's Japan are to whaling in the 21st century...

The IWC is but the latest instrument to fail to manage the whaling industry.

Indeed it did fail for the first 3 decades or so of it's existence (until the NMP was introduced in the 1970's).

No one is suggesting we base current and future management decisions on old, outdated, failed and irrelevant management practices, so I'm still not sure why you hark back to pre-WWII days. (Of course you are welcome to live in the past, but don't expect everyone else to, thanks.)

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Posted in: Japan whaling authorities sue Sea Shepherd in U.S. See in context

SwissToni,

I know many species are endangered.

I'm sure you also know that the Antarctic minke isn't. If you had conviction in your "humane killing" argument I don't think you'd be making secondary excuses like this.

I know the best population figures anyone can come up with have an error margin of +-50%.

That is quite wrong.

The abundance estimates used by the IWC are specified with a 95% confidence interval, which means that we can be 95% sure that the abundance is greater than the lower bound of the abundance estimate.

Furthermore, the IWC will not allow catches on stocks below 54% of their initial carrying capacity.

On top of this, a whale stock would need to be depleted very significantly below the 54% level before it came under any threat of extinction.

Unless you don't use airplanes for fear of them crashing and kill you, opposing whaling on these grounds completely ignores a proper quantification of the risk associated.

I know Japan has been fighting whale conservation measures since the 1930s.

The Whaling Commission didn't even exist in the 1930's. It makes no sense at all to base one's views on regulated whaling based on a time when there was none.

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Posted in: HIS Japan to offer Western Union money transfer services See in context

If one is based in Japan, the cheapest way to exchange is to use a FX company that offers the service. You can then exchange at close to market rates. Most banks have a spread of one yen or more, whereas one FX company I know does it for a spread of less than 0.1 yen (exact rate depends on the currency). The foreign banks have much narrower spreads than Japanese ones, but they still can't beat the FX companies.

The downside is you need to be able to read Japanese to open an FX account, and read through all their "risk" documentation. IMO there is minimal risk if you are just exchanging money though (as opposed to trading high leverage on margin). If you are going to be exchanging money often and with non-trivial amounts of cash then it's worth the hassle.

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Posted in: Japan whaling authorities sue Sea Shepherd in U.S. See in context

Animux,

Everyone knows that IWC resolutions are non-binding, and Japan abides by all of them accept for the politically motivated ones that go against the spirit of the whaling convention.

Why anti-whalers think a whaling convention should make it easy for whaling to be banned is beyond me. Anti-whalers are just plain dirty and dishonest and should get out of the whaling commission.

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Posted in: Japan whaling authorities sue Sea Shepherd in U.S. See in context

Wouldn't it have been better to use the funds to research a humane killer to take any whales that may now be sustainably taken?

They've got one, and practice makes perfect.

Simple test is whether you'd rather be reborn a whale or a cow. Whale, whale, whale.

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Posted in: Japan whaling authorities sue Sea Shepherd in U.S. See in context

Alexandra Dickens,

Well if Japan is all about adhering to laws then why are they whaling illegally!!!!!!!

They aren't whaling illegally, they are whaling legally.

The whaling convention allows for catches for research purposes, with the added provision that any whales taken not be wasted. (It's the convention for the REGULATION of whaling, not for the "prohibition" of whaling.)

Your confusion may stem from the anti-whalers' success in abusing the whaling convention to impose temporary zero-catch limits for commercial whaling, and designate the entire Antarctic whaling grounds as a "sanctuary". However, neither of these measures (both against the spirit of the whaling convention) override the right of nations to catch whales for research purposes and provide the forthcoming biological data to the IWC for study, which is what Japan has done in light of the temporary zero-catch limits (which were at least ostensibly imposed by the anti-whalers because of an alleged lack of scientific data).

If you don't believe me, just wait patiently for the outcome of Australia's ICJ case against Japan. The ICJ panel of judges is in my estimation 99% certain to throw Australia's case out of court, on the basis that Japan's actions are consistent (not inconsistent) with the whaling convention. If the ICJ panel of judges agrees with me, then you'll know that I was right about this.

Simple reality - not liking whaling is not the same as whaling being illegal.

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Posted in: Japan whaling authorities sue Sea Shepherd in U.S. See in context

Alexandra, the law isn't going to change to be like that, so your question is mute. The whaling convention cannot be changed without agreement by all nations who have adhered to it. I'm not sure if you realise, but Japan isn't the only country in the world with whaling and whale eating populations.

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Posted in: Japan whaling authorities sue Sea Shepherd in U.S. See in context

ignoranttolerance,

Sea Shepherd is not hugely disliked in the UK either, yet the UK courts ruled against SS in their case against the Malta fishing company.

Anti-whaling (anti-Tuna fishing) is one thing, the law is another. The US and UK are not third world nations, they have proper institutions, and they won't harbour these eco-terrorists just because they are attacking Japanese whaling interests.

The US itself has identified the threat to society from eco-terrorism and prosecuted against those who perpetrate it, in the not so distant past.

Personally, I think it comes down to the fact that governments and the IWC will not stand up to the Japanese government for abusing a "legal loophole".

Australia is trying to argue that at the ICJ. The problem is that Article VIII is not a "loophole", it's an explicitly written article of the whaling convention that actually exists, it is not a "gap". This is why Australia will fail - because they can't accept that the whaling convention is a whaling convention.

They are actually doing something to stop whaling which is NOT being conducted for research and is being abused under the title of "Research" for profit.

Research is being conducted, and the government subsidises the research (as do I when I eat whale meat), the operations do not make a profit.

It's a fact, the Japanese government does not do it for research because there's no need to kill 1,000 whales for scientific purposes.

Your fact is fiction. The IWC Scientific Committee uses biological data from the Japanese research programme in it's own research. You can see this for yourself if you read their latest report.

There are non lethal ways to conduct research on whales.

These methods don't produce the required biological data that the IWC's Scientific Committee it utilising.

"Americans don't support violence" FALSE. If there is no other way to stop something, then violence is the only way to do it.

Hmmmmm, watch out, the FBI might be on to you with statements like that...

Americans really don't give a crap if there's a mess on the deck of a Japanese whaling ship because SS threw a bottle of butyric acid on their deck. BIG DEAL.

What matters is what the judge says.

Sure, but they're not going to issue an injunction against him. The US government does not like whaling and they're not going to stop a group that's doing something to help stop it. The US government is letting somebody else do their job for them, so the favor is in Watson's hand.

We are talking about the USA in 2011, not the British harbouring pirates in 17th century Caribbean.

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