Japan Today

gaijinTechie comments

Posted in: Patches of higher-than-average radioactivity found in Tokyo park See in context

Basroil, you do have a bad rep, people give you a neg for seeing your nick. You did ask the right questions just now. However, the bias is from your side. You should present the same questions to Tepco and MEXT as well. Unlike individuals, they have ideological bias against reporting everything honestly.

And no, nobody cares that they're already from "a prestigious university", whatever that might mean. Was their education relevant? Was it up to speed with modern times? With what grades did they graduate? There is no value to a university degree from a university that you can graduate by simply hanging around.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Patches of higher-than-average radioactivity found in Tokyo park See in context

There is absolutely no indication to suggest that the source of the contamination would matter in the slightest.

Basroil is right in the fact that laymen waving shiny new geiger counters probably cannot determine the source and severity of the contamination, and there are many non-catastrophic. But since MEXT data (i.e. in Yomiuri) shows that present radiation levels are less than even natural pre-Fukushima background radiation, I wouldn't put too much weight on them any more than supermarket inspectors doing their rounds. Problem with MEXT is same as Tepco, lack of ethics, not of skill.

There are several Japanese individuals who document both their measurements and results in detail, unlike MEXT and Tepco. Those two seem to think that expecting proper documentation is "an attack on their honesty" or something like that. Somebody needs to tell them they need to have some before it can be attacked. And only successful defence earns them respect and trust. If even possible anymore...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Seafood caught off Fukushima goes on sale for first time since disaster See in context

The safety levels are ok. Concentrations will become dangerous only if one keeps eating them for more than 12 months. Hate to mention it, but there has been contaminated food in the markets for 15 months already and counting. Bon appetit. I'll skip, since import food is always honestly checked due to naturally occurring xenophobia, they are good enough.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: TEPCO report admits flaws worsened crisis; denies plan to pull out staff See in context

organizational and communication problems that have not yet been resolved.

More than a year after? That pretty much explains everything, now doesn't it?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Commuters' tolerance tested in face of declining public manners See in context

I also have some shocking revelations to Tokyo commuters: I am about a foot taller and probably 1.5 times heavier than you. When you bumb into me running, please don't be so surprised when it's not I who bounces and goes flying into other passengers, as undoubtedly was your really clever plan to be two minutes earlier at work. Physics doesn't work like that. Not even in Japan. Not even for you. Get over it, deal with it, the next train is but a few minutes away anyway.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Newly developed memory could make your smartphone battery last 10 times longer See in context

I'm queueing already, got my tent set up and all...

A very nice invention! But the batteries die fast only because of 3G/4G connections. My 1.5 year old iPhone still goes strong in the evening if I don't use the 3G.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Commuters' tolerance tested in face of declining public manners See in context

‘Can this really be happening?’ I said to myself, but felt resigned that there was nothing to do about it.

Everybody wants improvements done NOW!!!

... by somebody else.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Record number of people living on welfare See in context

But tmarie, there are people who actually are too good for certain types of jobs. When somebody goes through 17+ years of high-level education and in many cases has valuable hands-on experience on his/her respective field, why should that be thrown away just so somebody can keep a kombini open 24h in the middle of a field of tsunami devastation? Even without a degree, people have particular experience of their own, and it is not irrelevant to one's standard of living.

It is a problem that their cushy office desks and corresponding employments were washed away. But relocation, especially from a disaster area to another part of Japan, is not easy at all. Getting on one's feet takes time, and they need to eat during that time.

If you don't take away their dignity after the tsunami already took everything from them, they will search and find motivated employment that brings a helluva lot more taxes, purchasing power and more employment than forced, unmotivated grind job ever could.

Of course, the ones that don't look for better future for themselves are the exeptions, but there are always those and in sufficiently small numbers that it won't pose a threat to anybody except themselves.

Also, low applicant numbers might make employers think why s#it jobs are exactly just that.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Record number of people living on welfare See in context

It is irresponsible to claim that any particular portion or the beneficiaries would be lazy. The whole point of doing work is to increase one's standard of living. There are plenty of jobs that simply do not do that. Maybe the commute is several hours one-way, effectively tearing one's family apart and reducing worker's buying power? Maybe somebody is not comfortable doing night shifts with a baby alone at home? Maybe professional Japan is catching up to the western model where one's career and education and all the work and effort associated with them would be effectively nullified if one has to accept even a single job outside one's field.

There are dozens of valid reasons for not accepting just any job. All of us aren't in it for "the greater cause" if we won't be the ones collecting also. Why would anybody want to be the oppressed victim? And no, the "trickle on our heads" economy model does not function in any meaningful way (other than as the scam that it is).

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Fukui governor says he believes Oi reactors are safe See in context

m5c32, Quite so.

But after reading a director of Koriyama city board of education saying that "contamination is a matter of mentality" (http://tinyurl.com/84x6hvc), I would urge as many as possible to accept only objectively verifiable facts from experts only. I really don't care what a politician or a bureaucrat thinks, nobody should.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to develop drones to monitor radiation See in context

Drones collecting air samples would reveal the movements of radiative air-borne particles. Nothing an aircraft guided by humans couldn't do much cheaper and with same level of safety.

Drone development serves only weapons development, just like Japan's increasing accumulation of weapons grade plutonium.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan to develop drones to monitor radiation See in context

Drones aren't going to improve testing/reporting ethics nor increase independently verifiable awareness of the problem.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Posted in: Fukui governor says he believes Oi reactors are safe See in context

he believes adequate safety measures are in place

So it's a question of religion now, is it?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: 1,324 Fukushima citizens file criminal complaint against TEPCO, gov't See in context

All the luck to them, they have a good case: http://tinyurl.com/7o2xgtx

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Panel says gov't meddling added to Fukushima nuclear crisis See in context

They did not follow the official line of communication—through the regulator, the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency—under the country’s nuclear disaster management law

NISA was supposed to send experts to the disaster site. They did not, so they knew nothing themselves! Furthermore, manager of NISA has no education nor experience in anything even relating to radiation, and he didn't even bother to attend the disaster meetings with the prime minister!!

Perhaps the honourable panel would care to explain exactly how and to what end would they have consulted NISA?!?

While they're at it, they can explain how telling Tepco not to run away and NISA to do their jobs is considered meddling.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Posted in: Poll: Japanese opposition to nuclear power stronger See in context

Japan had its economy in a crash spiral decades before the nuclear disaster, when the nuclear plants were still "operational".

There is no causality between a stable economy and nuclear power, as recent history of Japan clearly demonstrates.

2 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan Atomic Energy Agency criticized for comparing radiation to angry wife See in context

The “radioactive wife” cartoon had been created by a group of six women who live near Tokaimura

That's the source of Japanese radiation knowledge? Just like Sarah Palin claimed international diplomacy expertise and Russia knowledge "because they could see it in nice weather".

Comparison was way off as well. One should compare radiation with the young stressed mothers in the news quite often lately - both kill children and nobody can, nor is willing to, stop them.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Radioactivity: Japan's invisible enemy within See in context

So, Bekumiru is about waving a geiger counter above the food? Is that how it's done now? That was a sarcastic question, I know it's not. Might as well wave a thermometer. Or a magic wand in big circles screaming "Expecto Patronum!".

How about some control measurements? Test is reliable only when it's proven as such, ideological declaration in those lines is simply not enough to make the test accurate.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Hashimoto reverses stance; OKs limited restart of Oi reactors See in context

i still think IAEA oughta have a strong, neutral, specialized say

Well, we know that isn't going to happen as long as amakudari Amano is running it.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Softbank tests balloon as emergency cell phone base See in context


2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan bets on overseas 'Japantowns' to boost economy See in context

Not a bad idea, actually. Japanese culture minus salarymen and bureaucrats, very attractive. Ones own culture is always purified when tested inside another culture.

But it hinges on language-capable Japanese moving overseas for extended period, and I don't see it happening on the whim of what is practically an interim government.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Life is tough for core group who refuse to leave Fukushima nuclear plant area See in context

I'll second Borscht. They are all wrong. It's just a piece of land, nothing else. One may revere it and certainly miss it, but it's still a piece of land. Life is more important. Flora and fauna always adapts, but humans do not adapt to radiation in any practical time frame. Those people do not have a happy ending. If the radiation won't get them and their children, fear of it will.

I feel for everybody who wants to farm, I really do. But people should not be forced to buy this food, not without test methodology and results clearly stated. "Innocent until proven guilty" only applies to court rooms, not to family dinner tables, and certainly not to people who are known to lie for financial gain.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

Posted in: Fukushima farmers pray for radiation-free rice See in context

Brainiac, radioactive food contamination does not register by waving a geiger counter over it. If Aeon does that, they are doing it only to deceive you and other customers. Next question is "Deception is being done, what is their motivation for it?". All answers for that are, of course, not acceptable.

I support ANY farmer, but only as long as they maintain food safety and customer respect as number one priority in action. If there are tests being done, there is no harm in letting customers to see the numbers and of course, the manner the tests are being conducted. So many believe they can perform an accurate radiological examination, it is simply mind-boggling.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: Tabloid blasts growing numbers of foreign welfare chiselers See in context

Just because he is a professor does not make him an expert or even smart.

I remember one "professor" from a "prestigious university" saying that "Japanese race can do no bad things". This simply falls into line.

Japanese academia is far more thoroughly schooled than it is educated.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Man attempts suicide after apparently hanging disabled daughter in public restroom See in context

There are lots of literature about societies that, like Japan, encourages the "weaker" to exit the society in an accelerated manner in order to preserve the "unity".

Too bad they are all dystopic science fiction.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan declined U.S. offer to station nuclear experts in Kan's office: Edano See in context

Debucho, Vesperto. You are assuming that Japan had experts making decisions for the benefit of Japanese people. It didn't.

Japan had amakudari leading the NISA, which is equal to nothing. According to their own guidelines, he was supposed to send experts to the site. He didn't. He didn't even bother to attend the crisis meetings with the prime minister. He could have not been a bigger failure.

Any foreign expert would have been beneficial to the Japanese people. Also, there is no such thing as a domestic nuclear accident.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Posted in: Fukushima radiation higher than first estimated, TEPCO admits See in context

Here's some tritium contamination data: http://tinyurl.com/tritiumJP

And it's recap in English: http://tinyurl.com/tritiumEN

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Fukushima radiation higher than first estimated, TEPCO admits See in context

They will deny admitting it later. They've done it before, got away with it, so they'll do it again.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: City in Shizuoka starts incinerating tsunami debris See in context

Basroll, touched a nerve, did I?

1) If there is no place to dump trash, then perhaps Japanese should a) upgrade their incinerators to western standards or b) look into recycling, c) using that for the landfill projects or d) stop creating so much garbage!

2) Low-heat incinerators are NOT effective, no matter how Japanese they are. Go ask city hall the dioxin levels of your home town. Not that they'd tell you, mind you.

3) Again you're missing the point. I didn't buy it for a lab, I bought it because it was made by a double disaster victim and I wanted to help without endangering myself and my family. And perhaps you should compare it's data sheet with it's price tag before saying anything silly, such as comments about the types of radioactivity - you do understand how the radiation types differ, don't you? And how it's child's play to separate them, even for a ¥3500 device (quite properly calibrated by an outside laboratory as well as myself, since after university I used to do it in an official capacity for a living after Chernobyl messed up my home town).

Moderator: Stay on topic please.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: City in Shizuoka starts incinerating tsunami debris See in context

I wonder why people are under the assumption that burning it is some sort of perfect final solution? It simply spreads the microparticles everywhere (i.e. into the fields), both radioactive and otherwise toxic.

Sure, I'll support hard-hit people in a meaningful way (proud owner of Pocket Geiger counter "Made in Ishinomaki", although it is kind of pain to use). But if kizuna means I have to take as much damage as they have taken, then count me out. That's just stupid.

Just bury the debris.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

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