gabrial888 comments

Posted in: IOC in contact with prosecutors amid Tokyo 2020 Olympic bid payment report See in context

Turkey was cleaner than Japan. Kudos to them. They didn't give in to pressure to pay bribes. Japan, paid the dirty money, got the event, exposed embarrassingly, and mired in debt and myriads problems hosting it. When the event is held, this what is at this point an allegation will cast a long shadow. The bid-winner turned out to be a big loser here. No wonder they scurried away hiding.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Posted in: Serial underwear thief re-arrested for assaulting woman See in context

So many frustrated single men living in their own sexual bubbles in Japan. Many of them like this man are stuck in the lowest stratum of the society and can't marry even if they wanted to. Probably one of the side effects of Abenomics. To prevent this kind of crime from getting out of hand, the government should start creating sexually themed amusement parks all over Japan including Kochi where they can satisfy their desires. Mm...probably not. Maybe it will just abet more serious act in the real world. What is China doing about this sort of thing? Their gender balance is much more lopsided I hear with unmarried men past certain age being referred to as "bare branches". Any Chinese contributors?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: SDF planes deployed to collect radioactive material after N Korean blast See in context

As bad as this new development may sound, it will probably draw Japan, South Korea and China closer together. A common evil begets strange bed fellows.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: BOJ turns activist investor to revive economy See in context

Government insinuating which areas of the corporate Japan should receive easy money is a double-edged sword. It works in the early stage of industrialization when investment goals are so clear. In a mature economy like Japan's, its grassroots economic participants usually know better where to invest and how to invest to be efficient. I know this government is acting out of desperation but my sense is this will lead to a creation of nice-sounding ETFs that misallocate funds with at best mediocre results. The funds will further skew the economy to favor big businesses that dominate domestically but uncompetitive internationally. That's how Japan keeps sagging.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: New school in Iraq to provide a Japanese-style education See in context

Japan as a model to be emulated sounds so passé. Isn't Japan a model to be avoided now for its prolonged anemic economic growth?

The Japanese language will also be among the lessons offered.

Reminds me of late 1980s. Those days Japanese language was touted as the rising star in many countries' school systems. But now its prospect as a major language of business is so bleak. I hope students know that they are embarking on an arduous study of a complicated niche language whose native speakers keep declining year by year. Anachronism of the whole thing is hilarious.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: 1st Fukushima worker diagnosed with radiation-linked cancer See in context

Big business and government nuclear power advocates are probably thinking deep-down, "A case like this is small cost to feed the massive Tokyo electricity needs inexpensively." The cost of nuclear power varies greatly depending on how you assess the cost of human lives when disaster strikes. If the advocates can underplay cases like this, they'll succeed in reducing the total nuclear cost quite a lot.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Amazon lawsuit aims at fake reviews See in context

Amazon has a point here. Sifting out bogus reviews is vital for people's shopping experience. While legal action like this provides a degree of deterrence, it'll more likely end up a cat-and-mouse game. Giving different weights to reviews depending on the reviewers' past review quality might be one more way to go about it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: More VW trouble: 2016 diesels have new suspect software See in context

What a bottomless pit of deception! The image of dependable German engineering prowess just keeps crumbling like a house of cards.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Toyota aims to nearly eliminate gasoline cars by 2050 See in context

35 years is quite ambitious given where we are now but I'm skeptical as to its feasibility. If "they are 120% confident," that's great but that's just from a security company analyst. They'll say anything. But I commend the fact that Toyota actually voiced the actual target year nevertheless.

But they (experts) are divided on whether all gasoline engines will disappear, or they’ll stay on, thanks to greener internal combustion engines, as well as the arrival of clean diesel technology.

The term 'clean diesel' is a joke now. The VW fraud opened the Panda's box. VW cheating is out the question but other manufactures' 'clean diesel' cars are also spewing a lot more NOx and PM (traditional pollutants and PM is cancer causing) much more than their test data show on the actual road running condition. Please stop using this misnomer.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Japan, China must move on from excessive focus on past: Abe See in context

Provoking the neighbor you wronged before by preaching them to forget only makes matters worse. Doesn't he realize he's the one who's prodding the neighbor to focus more on the past? Stupid but he's probably doing it to solidify support domestically. Nation of Japan always so eager to avert its eyes from the darkness in its history happily goes along with Abe's attempt to distract.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: Nobel Literature prize again eludes Japan's hope, Haruki Murakami See in context


He's popular. But navel gazing prose doesn't deserve the nobel prize.


I believe the academy thinks they can give new exposure to a writer with the prize, and Murakami is probably considered too popular and not in need of the boost.

Well said. Myriads elusive variables in literature awards. Selection of Nobel literature prize itself is practically navel-gazing exercise and if they are at it, they might as well shed light on hitherto not so well-known writers in the world rather than glorifying the already-glorified. Their limited Nobel Foundation resources are better spent that way.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Sharp launching robot smartphone 'RoBoHoN' See in context

I commend this effort by seriously struggling Sharp. I hope this will work, but tend to feel notwithstanding this really nice demo video, the real thing when you actually used it will be quite half-baked. So many features this robot seems to packs but I'm afraid it will probably do most of them poorly compared with devices dedicated to each function. But who am I to judge, we'll see next year.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Ichiro signs $2 million, 1-year deal to remain with Marlins See in context

Continue playing in the U.S. as long as possible, Ichiro-san. Then be a coach and next a manager there. Judging from recently footage of his pitcher job, he seems show great initiative and have fit into the team really well. I've seen some American managers in Japan but not vice versa. I'd love to see him accomplish another unprecedented feat.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Posted in: With free trade deal, Obama solidifies U.S. pivot to Asia See in context

The headline is dead right, for better or worse. Economically, many understandably have reasons to hate, politically, many who do not want to see China dominated world welcome this.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Abe's new slogan stirs memories of wartime rhetoric See in context

Funny Abe puts it as if it's a matter of choice. With the pension fund drying up, "Be active or perish" is more like it. It's basically the same thing as the wartime slogan, right?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: After 5 years of negotiations, TPP talks near deal See in context

Another side of this. TPP is a U.S. effort to take initiative for a new trade framework intended to demonstrate solidarity in the face of rising Chinese influence. That's why it's so important for this deal to include Japan, the third largest economy. Failure of TPP will be a boon for China which is seeking opportunity to nudge the world toward a new, more China centered global economic order including AIIB.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Companies learn to weed out false customer claims See in context

I sympathize with the people who have to deal with false claims on the front line. If a clark asks a lot of questions, the false claimer would probably act really upset throwing in all sorts of histrionics and wastes a lot of time for the shop. And time is what these false claimers have plenty of.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Top 10 things even Japanese people think they’re too obsessive about See in context

I heard from several people that the noise from another person's earbuds on the train was really annoying. I also remember seeing a waring in a train car or bus saying "Beware of leaking sound from your headphones." That to me qualifies as obsessive and high-strung.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Posted in: Top 10 things even Japanese people think they’re too obsessive about See in context


I don't understand how anyone would expect a bus to run on time.

Exactly. The article should't include buses. Where I live they are late more than 5 minutes quite often and people take it in stride. Bus drivers who have to contend with all sorts of traffic and weather can't be that accurate and people know that.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Indonesia defends rail project after Japan expresses anger See in context

@Tiring You are right. Los Angeles it is. Thanks for correction. Will it be built entirely with the private sector initiative? The announcement was timed to precede Xi JIn Ping's U.S. visit. It's admirable if they can build it without any public sector involvement. It also means the Chinese side is taking a lot of risk as, even if it does not go beyond the drawing boards, it's a lot of planning stage investment wasted, not to mention the risk of making Mr. Xi lose face.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Indonesia defends rail project after Japan expresses anger See in context

The U.S. also decided to employ the Chinese high speed rail system to be constructed between SF and Las Vegas. There probably is not as far vast a technological edge for the Japanese system as many Japanese like to believe. China's high speed rail system is a lot more extensive than Japan's and naturally they are accumulating expertise through actual operational experience everyday. If the Chinese system works fine in the litigious U.S. (meaning rigorous screening), it will hugely boost the credibility of the Chinese rapid rail system and many other countries will follow suit in adopting the Chinese system. Doesn't bode well for Japan's infrastructure export strategy.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Posted in: Why phones break: Screens get stronger, yet we demand more See in context

Apple has received a patent for using internal motors to rotate a phone as it drops so that the glass part doesn’t hit the ground.

Wow, the phone that flips itself mid air. Like a cat? Impressive...if they can incorporate the feature without significantly adding to the phone's weight and thickness.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Abe: Japan must fix domestic problems before taking in refugees See in context

Typical copout excuse. As if other countries don't have domestic problems to take care of. The very artlessness and inaneness of it is comedic.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Posted in: Beyond Volkswagen: 8 companies that have behaved badly See in context

And there are many more companies that haven't been caught. Volkswagen execs must be gnashing their teeth thinking, 'Had it not been for that goddamn West Virginia University emission study!'

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: U.S. admiral signals wider role for Third Fleet in western Pacific See in context

China basically wants to challenge the existing world order as the U.S. as the top dog. But they don't do it as stupidly as Japan or Germany before WWII. China does it only to a degree that does not risk a military clash with the U.S. This is to validate their territorial claims in the long run. They well know the ultimate basis of power is economy.

China has flexed its economic muscle with the recent record purchase of Boeing passenger jets. But it's nothing compared to what they will be capable of if they can grow at above 7% rates annually for they next two decades. From the Chinese point of view, they need to keep insisting on their territorial rights for the day they become so dominant economically. Then, other countries will give up on their conflicting claims of their own volition as not doing so will be so detrimental to their vital economic ties with China.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Conveyor belt sushi chain taking bold, eco-friendly step of getting rid of all its conveyors See in context

What does this mean for Ishikawa prefecture companies that produce virtually 100% of these sushi conveyers? I hope they produce the sushi rail system as well. Otherwise, if this conveyer-less trend takes hold, they are goners.

I also feel a bit sorry for the employees there as they must work harder and harder to cater to individual needs for a measly price of 108 yen per plate. I heard these sushi restaurants' ingredient cost portion is a lot higher than other restaurant business categories. Hopefully the reduced cost from dispensing with conveyers and smaller waste will contribute to higher salaries for employees, but I'm skeptical.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Residents of Russian-held isles await diplomatic resolution See in context


The main thing the islanders really need is regular ferry connections.

I wound't count on it. For the J government to allow ferry connections is tantamount to endorsing the status quo vis-à-vis the territorial dispute with Russia.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Residents of Russian-held isles await diplomatic resolution See in context

As for the R v.s. J territorial dispute, my imaginary Ainu friend in my head is grumbling, "A pot calling a kettle black."

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Posted in: Residents of Russian-held isles await diplomatic resolution See in context

If I were a resident, I would look to China for business ties. Chinese tourists have deeper pockets and are more likely to be equipped with requisite curiosity to visit this off-the-beaten-track destination. Why bother with Japan with which the issue always has to come back to territorial claims?

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Posted in: Man arrested for burying his mother in backyard See in context

Many in Japan are getting poorer and the number of the old just keeps increasing. I'm not surprised if more people resort to this type of illegal 'private' burial down the line. Of course some will do it for pension fraud, but yet others probably do so feeling overwhelmed by the cost. Here's one example of what it costs for a simplest form of 直葬 direct burial. (no funeral ceremony)

coffin ¥55,000 dry ice(for one day) ¥ 7,000 car to carry the body(within 10km)¥15,100 mortician's fee ¥40,000 total payment to the mortician. ¥117,100 (plus tax)A

cremation fee ¥59,000 urn ¥11,865 storage fee(one day) ¥ 3,675 total payment to the crematory ¥74,540(plus tax)B 

grand total (A+B) ¥191,640 (plus tax)

5 ( +5 / -0 )

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