Giant Haystacks comments

Posted in: Suga tells G-20 Japan will lead international efforts on climate change See in context

With Japan far ahead in terms of recycling more specific things it can go ahead with it as it goes greener in ways other countries cannot

Japan isn’t far ahead in recycling. In fact it’s one of the worst performers in the OECD. The vast majority of waste here is either exported or incinerated at ultra-high temperatures - which contributes to global warming.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

Posted in: Japan should brace for 'leaderless era' as U.S. turns inward, PM adviser says See in context

@Septim Dynasty -

Just look what the Japanese citizens got executed by ISIS! If they were Americans, then the USA will dispatch a massive military force to rescue their citizens

Like they rescued James Foley, Daniel Pearl, Steven Sotloff, Peter Kassig and Kayla Mueller?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan should brace for 'leaderless era' as U.S. turns inward, PM adviser says See in context

@blue in greenToday - the Presidency was filled by the lawfully elected winner in 2016 and the other side did everything in their power to undermine and delegitimise it. How can you therefore expect the Republicans to bow out gracefully now that that precedent has been set?

When two respected global institutions are concluding that polarisation in the USA is approaching levels seen between Palestine & Israel and Bosnia & Kosovo I think "dramatic" language on a Japanese website is the least of your problems.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan should brace for 'leaderless era' as U.S. turns inward, PM adviser says See in context

Niinami is just saying out loud what other countries are thinking.

The USA is dying on its feet. A recent Cambridge University study (https://rb.gy/re7thi) found that polarisation and tribalism in the USA is now approaching levels of ethnic parochialism seen in Bosnia and Kosovo. Another pre-election study by Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences (https://rb.gy/4abfiy) concluded that Democrats and Republicans showed levels of distrust similar to that which exists between Palestinians and Israelis.

Hard as it is for some to accept but this all pre-dates Trump by a long time. The pandoras box of identity politics that the Democrats have so wholeheartedly embraced is just the latest - and most dangerous - illness to attack the diseased American nation. Added to this, their 4-year campaign to delegitimise Trump's presidency (rather than try to understand what led people to vote for him in the first place) will have destroyed even further the dwindling faith in the US democratic system and ensured that the gulf of political division continues to grow apace.

Other countries would be well advised to try and shield themselves against the toxic spillover as this epic identity crisis pushes the USA ever closer to Balkanisation. The rest of us can but look on as the nation that brought you social media, Big Macs and the atomic bomb literally eats itself alive.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Posted in: World leaders hope for fresh start after Biden win See in context

No, China has been a growing power for decades and there wasn't much anyone could do to stop it, but previous presidents always asserted a US leadership role in international institution. Trump though basically packed it in and threw China the keys.

Trump literally forced the rest of the world to reconsider using a communications system that would have handed the CCP a huge business - and possibly military - advantage for many years to come. It's absurd that you fail to acknowledge that. A key role in international institutions means nothing if you're actively feeding the CCP beast with outsourced production and unreciprocated access to your markets - both things that Trump attempted to address. Militarily, the US could have done far more to support its allies in the region. The previously referenced Scarborough Shoal incident was one of a number of occasions under Obama alone where the US military lost significant strategic ground.

Countries, including the US, can freely decide their own defence budgets. 

Actually they can't. In 2006, NATO Defence Ministers agreed to commit a minimum of two per cent of their Gross Domestic Product to spending on defence.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Posted in: World leaders hope for fresh start after Biden win See in context

You make valid points about Bush and Obama, but the big difference is that they were all committed to maintaining the postwar US dominated system.

Bush, Obama, Nixon, Clinton etc didn’t avoid doing things that would break the system, they actively undermined it by starting illegal wars and turning a blind eye as China spread its influence across the world and into major global institutions like the WHO. The void you speak of was created long before Trump arrived on the scene.

The post-war order may be US dominated but it is still a multilateral system and as Trump, for all his faults, pointed out, it was and continues to be, undermined by the multitude of other countries who fail to contribute in any meaningful way and always expect America to do the heavy lifting (Germany’s pitiful NATO contributions being a prime example).

-6 ( +8 / -14 )

Posted in: World leaders hope for fresh start after Biden win See in context

Trump did more damage to the US internationally than any modern president

Complete hysterical nonsense. Bush Junior literally set the Middle East ablaze, laid the groundwork for I.S and is directly responsible for the deaths and suffering of hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Iraqis. Obama, despite his heady rhetoric about an Asia-first foreign policy, stuck his head in the sand and hoped the China & North Korea problem would go away (spoiler: it hasn’t). Despite bombing some empty airfields in supposed retaliation, he stood back and allowed Assad to launch chemical attacks on his own people. Obama also did nothing as Russians established a presence in Syria. He failed to provide support to the Philippines during the Scarborough Shoal standoff - an episode described by one US general as “the greatest US military disaster since the helicopters took off from the embassy roof in Saigon”. Nixon began the process of outsourcing the US industrial base to China in an act of catastrophic self-sabotage unprecedented in modern human history. Clinton added to it with a NAFTA deal that was yet another punch in the guts for blue-collar workers.

The list of US blundering and meddling across the globe goes on and on but despite all his infantile bragging and crude syntax, Trump’s not even in the same league as Obama or Nixon when it comes to wrecking long-term global influence.

-12 ( +19 / -31 )

Posted in: Italy shuts down 4 regions as Europe tries lighter lockdowns See in context

Apart from this story about Europe and another other very similar one about Russia, Japan Today's 'World' coverage is entirely focussed on the USA.

I get the that the US election is important but the world's a big place so is there any chance of a bit of variety for those of us who are sick of reading about the US?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan’s 'new normal' train manners poster: 7 steps for safe travel during the pandemic See in context

How about the 'New Normal' being Japanese men giving up their seat (often in the priority area) for pregnant women?

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan unveils 3,000-ton new submarine See in context

Trust me, the Japanese Military has never slept. Best in the region, and getting bigger and better

Hate to throw a bucket of reality over your little fantasy but China would crush Japan in about a week if war broke out.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

Posted in: Tokyo reports 220 new coronavirus cases; nationwide tally 570 See in context

"Up, down, up, down.

People being sent back to offices, and walking around inside the offices without masks and not respecting social distancing anymore.

Expect many clusters to start appearing in offices - just wait for it."

People have been saying that for months now and things continue to remain under control.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

Posted in: Trump downplays legacy of slavery in appeal to white voters See in context

Regardless of Trump, every non-American I know now sees the USA as a laughing stock and we wish it would stop exporting its divisive, toxic politics to the rest of the world.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: As sports embraces activism, what should Tokyo Olympics permit? See in context

Maybe the headline should be retitled "As Western sportspeople embrace activism, what should Tokyo Olympics permit?

Where does this begin and end? Is it ok for a Ugandan athlete to wear a t-shirt proclaiming support for her governments ongoing persecution of gays? Is it ok for an Ethiopian athlete to make a gesture indicating his support for Tigrayan independence? Ok for a Chinese athlete to announce support for their government policy towards Hong Kong or Taiwan during an interview with NBC after they've just won gold? Ok for a Brazilian athlete to declare their support for Bolsonaro? Ok for a U.S athlete to wear a MAGA hat on the podium while receiving their silver medal?

There's a really good reason why politics has been kept out of sports. Long may it stay that way.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Posted in: Afro-textured hair in Japan: Decolonizing the Afro See in context

"Decolonizing the Afro" - when was the afro colonised?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: 4-year-old boy dies after choking on large grape at Tokyo kindergarten See in context

AlongfortherideToday  -

Very sad to lose a young life this way but is it really the Kindergartens fault or just a sad unfortunate tragedy.

It absolutely is the kindergartens fault. Anyone with experience of children should know you don’t give them grapes.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: 'Crash Landing on You' star Son Ye Jin overwhelmed by popularity in Japan See in context

oldman_13 - "Thus, while one country gleefully boycotts products from Japan, Japan embraces products and cultures from that country"

Lol - try buying a Samsung TV in Bic Camera or Yodabashi or anywhere in Japan for that matter. Or try buying a Kia or a Hyundai. Even the Samsung Galaxy store in Harajuku has removed the 'Samsung' name from its displays!

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan puzzled by Indonesia's policy shift over high-speed rail plan See in context

Fighto - "EU nations do not have the technical expertise of Japan to design and build world leading high-speed rail. Indonesia will choose Japan"

True but that's primarily because we value our countryside and don't want to concrete over everything like Japan has.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Abe, Johnson to work closely over coronavirus response See in context

@Japanoob - Angela Merkel has said around 70% of the German population will become infected with Coronavirus and has essentially told them they'll have to cope with it. Boris Johnson, acting on advice/instruction of among the finest medical and scientific minds available, has said the same thing but added that the UK will try & make it work to their advantage by creating an environment for herd immunity to prevent an even greater catastrophe later in the year when, as all studies indicate, the virus will return.

I'm no fan of Boris Johnson but the way this situation is being used by certain sections of the UK society to score cheap political points is truly nauseating.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

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