IloveCoffee comments

Posted in: Another cabinet minister, 100 cross-party lawmakers visit Yasukuni shrine See in context

I often wonder why hasn't the US media picked on this yet. A lot of Americans would be upset to know that the Japanese worship the war criminals that started the war and attacked America. For the Japanese, including the Japanese government, knowing that their image in America is being tarnished matters more than antagonizing the Koreans and the Chinese.

3 ( +13 / -10 )

Posted in: Clashes erupt in Barcelona as half a million separatists rally See in context

CNN: Crickets

Fox News: Crickets

MSM: Crickets

EU: Crickets

So what have we learned from this? I personally learned two things. One is that, if you have a democratic form of government, the MSM and the people of the world would not care even if you crack people's head open on the streets, arrest and beat to death separatists and use any form of power necessary to contain any form of discontent or uprising happening in your country. If, on the other hand, your form of governance is not democratic, and there is a separatist riot happening in your country, the MSM and the people of the world will be very upset with you if you even attempt to defend yourself.

The second thing that i learned is that in a sick society, hypocrisy is only a problem when it conflicts with somebody else's hypocrisy.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Posted in: Yes or No? Vital vote on Brexit plan set for Saturday in UK See in context

We should write a big message in the fields of Calais -- "WE DON'T WANT YOU ANYMORE".

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

Posted in: School bullying cases hit record high in Japan in FY2018 See in context

@JJ Jetplane

Anybody can sue anybody for anything. At least that would be the case if Japan had a good working judicial system. The train companies are private businesses. If you have been abused or wronged in some way inside the premises of a private business, you can hold them accountable for allowing this to happen. This will not be a bad precedent, but a very good one. Businesses and institutions must be liable for what happens inside their premises. When someone feels liable, they tend to be extra cautious.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Turkey agrees with U.S. to pause Syria assault while Kurds withdraw See in context

It's pretty obvious that Erdogan wants to kick the Kurds out of Turkey because if Kurdistan ever becomes an actual nation, it would mean Turkey would loose a big chunk of its territory. He wants to kick them all out of their territory to prevent that kind of a scenario. Also, the fact that, Turkey began their military operation literally the very next day after the US troops withdrew tells me they must have coordinated this beforehand with someone from the US.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: School bullying cases hit record high in Japan in FY2018 See in context

I've said this before many times. The way to deal with school bullying, chikan and pawa-hara is by reforming the judicial system so that parents, workers or ordinary people can sue the bejesus out of these failed institutions. Trust me, 2 heavy lawsuits for tens of millions will make any school director, no matter how incompetent he is, deal with the situation promptly. You hit the train company for several millions and they will find a way to deal with the grouping issue. Sue a corporation for power harassment few times, and you'll be amazed at how quickly they change their behavior. The fear of a lawsuit is a very powerful tool.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Posted in: Sarcastic Koike says: Let's hold Olympic marathon on Russian-held islands See in context

I've been to Sapporo before once. It's a very beautiful city, especially in the summer and autumn. They definitely need more recognition, and this would be a good opportunity. The only problem with Sapporo is that they aren't connected with a shinkansen yet with the mainland. They are currently building the line, but it's scheduled to open in 2030. When Hakodate got linked with the shinkansen, tourism in the city boomed, but Hakodate is by far one of the ugliest and dull cities i have ever been to in Japan. Hokkaido in general would've been so much more better off if they had more political autonomy. I've been told that the reason why there are so many traffic accidents in Hokkaido is because they are stuck with the same traffic laws passed by the central government, which are entirely designed for the narrow roads of the mainland.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: England's Euro qualifier in Bulgaria marred by racist abuse See in context

No, they just trash their own Romany citizens and help breed Nazis. Lovely folks they are.

Can you give me a shred of evidence for that claim? I have never seen a newspaper or media outlet talking trash against Romani citizens. If they did that, they would get sued instantly. So again, give me your sources? Unless of course, you don't have any, and you are just an ordinary anti-Bulgarian liar?

Hating the English isn't going to make whatever dump you fled from any better.

So you are actually calling Bulgaria a "dump", and you think that's not racist at all? Sad how utterly incapable you are of looking at the mirror.

I think it’s time for a ban on Bulgaria in football competitions until they can rein in their racism.

It's really irritating how you English are utterly incapable of looking at yourself, instead blame others for what YOU do. Ban for what? 20 hooligans who were expelled from the stadium? Are you this utterly delusional about your own country where people are murdered on the streets? You can find 100 times more vile racism on a daily basis in England than you can ever find in Bulgaria.

I’ve read shocking reports about racism in that country

Like what?

Like this for example - ? Calling an entire nation "animals". Yep, that's definitely not racist in the slightest. Is this normal in England? That's a rhetorical question of course, just look at those headlines - Is this normal in England? You don't wanna answer anything that is inconvenient to you. Thousands of hate crimes, thousands of English leaving racist hateful comments, thousands of cases of racist abuse, Poles getting killed = non of that represents the English population. 20 hooligans in a football game = represents Bulgaria. You are racist, and you hate Bulgaria. Shame on you.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan home to 3 of world's 10 best largest cities: U.S. magazine See in context

People should really stop using the word "best" as an objective criteria. Likes and Dislikes are entirely subjective.

16 ( +18 / -2 )

Posted in: Protests erupt as Spain convicts 12 leading Catalan separatists See in context

So they arrest leaders promoting separatism. Why isn't the English-language media condemning Spain, and supporting these pro-Democracy freedom fighters? I am speechless about the double standards. You have to be an absolute anti-Chinese hater not to condemn the double standards. I guess China should set up an international foundation - Harmony and Liberty for People, and support the Catalanian freedom fighters, and also send a strong warning to Spain that if they even touch these liberty loving pro-Democracy protestors, China will put sanctions on Spain. Let's see how that plays out.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Posted in: England's Euro qualifier in Bulgaria marred by racist abuse See in context

"I would like to see a very stringent review by UEFA because I know they take racism very seriously," English FA Chairman Greg Clarke said. "We should join a movement to drive racism out of our game and have zero tolerance for it."

"As we are sadly aware, this is not the first time our players have been subjected to this level of abuse and there is no place for this kind of behavior in society,

Right, of course, the poor innocent Englishman crying about racism. It's sad that Greg Clarke isn't worried about the racist abuse against Bulgarians in England. Just few months ago, a Bulgarian student was stabbed to death in England because he was confused for "Muslim". Just look at the English newspaper booth. It's nothing but absolute vile hatred and racism - "Romanian immigrants are terrorizing out streets", "How much more can we take?", "Muslims destroy our culture". These are the headlines of the most read newspapers in the country. There is a difference between football hooligans and the general society. You would never see newspapers in Bulgaria talking trash about any other country or peoples, yet that's the everyday life in England. Minorities are abused literally on the streets on a daily basis.

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

Posted in: Nobel laureate Yoshino craves more research discoveries See in context

The Nobel Laureate Prize is one of the best examples of why capitalism works so great. It's amazing how even people who reject the "immorality" and "exploitative" nature of capitalism still, without realizing, support Capitalism by liking the Nobel Prize.

The success of the Nobel Laureate Prize in becoming so popular and craved award is all in the marketing. Pure capitalism. There are literally thousands and thousands of various scientific awards. There are tens of hundreds for each separate discipline alone. Yet somehow this particular one has become almost like the scientific version of the Olympic medal. There is even the Albert Einstein award for physics which i am sure very few people here know about. How can the Albert Einstein Award be less popular and craved for than the Nobel Laureate award? Does anybody here actually knows who Alfred Nobel is? The person who created this award. The man was some kind of an engineer, but most importantly, he was a businessman. A very clever businessman. While everybody knows who Albert Einstein is, and he is a symbol of science itself, Alfred had skills in marketing. By making the award so rare, he increased its value. While the prize itself isn't worth 2 cents, the fact that it's rare creates the value. Despite the many, many, many people of virtually no value who have won the prize, which should've discredited it for anybody who doesn't have a cabbage for a brain, people still crave for it. That's the power of marketing. Pure capitalism. Works every time.

Good marketing and sheep mentality can turn even a garden rock into a longed treasure.

"I have something you can't see"

"really?? Can i see it???".

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Posted in: Japan's August household spending rises for 9th month, but wages fall See in context

stands ready to act if risks heighten enough to derail Japan's recovery.

What recovery? You just said that the wages has been falling for the past 8 months. In reality it's much longer than that, but those are just the official numbers.

Abe pledged on Friday to deliver "all possible steps" if risks to the economy intensified, signaling his readiness to boost fiscal spending if this month's sales tax hike triggers a sharp downturn in growth.

Abe needs to hire better economic advisers, with actual real life experience and solid understanding of free market economics, so they can teach him that "growth" is not measured by GDP figures, but by indicators such as productivity growth, investments, real wage increase, savings, and few other important figures. Fiscal spending is the last thing he needs to do. Japan needs a major economic and political reform, but i don't think Abe has the capacity to do that. I don't think he has the understanding of what kind of reforms are needed, let alone the political will to do it. I just googled who is the minister of trade and economy. A guy that graduated political science and has been working in government for over 30 years. A typical career bureaucrat. A clueless leech. I bet if you ask him how many economic books have you read in your entire life, he won't be able to tell you even one. To expect an actual reform from these bureaucratic tapeworms is wishful thinking.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump threatens to 'obliterate' Turkish economy over Syria incursion plan See in context

Earlier on Monday, Trump said the United States should leave others from European allies to Iranian foes, "to figure the situation out" in the region.

He wrote on Twitter that "it is time for us to get out of these ridiculous Endless Wars, many of them tribal, and bring our soldiers home. WE WILL FIGHT WHERE IT IS TO OUR BENEFIT, AND ONLY FIGHT TO WIN. Turkey, Europe, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Russia and the Kurds will now have to figure the situation out."

Then why does he care what Turkey does in Syria?


I am curious what he means by "our''. If he means the arms manufacturers, then those endless wars are very much to their benefit. If by "our" he means the average person, then non of the overseas interventions are of any benefit.

The two main reasons Trump got elected is because he was seen as good for the economy, and because he promised to end the foreign wars. He has not delivered on either one of these two promises.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Man says he abused stepdaughter because efforts to discipline her didn't work See in context

This article really infuriates me. This is an extreme case of the norm. She is 5 years old you mentally deranged filth. Control freaks are everywhere in this country.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: UK offers EU last-minute Brexit deal See in context

The British proposal involves “an all-island regulatory zone on the island of Ireland, covering all goods including agrifood.” That would keep Northern Ireland in a regulatory zone with the EU for food, agricultural and industrial products, removing the need for checks.

So i.e. the border will be between the island of Ireland and the island of Britain. There is still going to be a border. At first they said they will never allow an inside border dividing the UK, now apparently they have conceded that option while, most likely, secretly hoping this will not push NI into unification with Ireland.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: Tax hike adds to woes for low-income households in Japan See in context

I very much enjoyed the yesterday morning news program on Asahi, where one of the hosts whose name i always forget said "the bottom line is that, either the welfare has to be reduced, or taxes raised". He pretty much summed it up very well. Welfare is a ponzi scheme.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Posted in: S Korean fighter jet patrols over islands disputed by Japan See in context

The island is disputed only to the Japanese, to the Koreans, there is no dispute. It is a Korean territory. The same way Senkaku Islands are disputed to the Chinese, but as far as the Japanese are concerned, there is no dispute. Nobody talks about dispute in Japan, they talk about China claiming a Japanese territory, the same way, nobody talks about dispute in Korea, they talk about Japan claiming Korean territory.

Dokdo island is administrated and controlled by Korea. It is a Korean territory, and nobody around the world thinks otherwise. Japan continuing to claim Dokdo and make it an issue that Koreans protect their own territory is only antagonizing Korea and worsening the relationships between the two countries. There is absolutely no chance in the world that Dokdo can ever be Japanese unless Japan tries to invade it and occupy it, which would instantly trigger a full fledged war.

The man-child dinosaurs running Japan think that, if they keep demanding something, eventually they will get it, the same way a child thinks if he keeps asking for a candy, he will get it. It's painfully obvious that they have no long term strategy or even understanding of what exactly are they hoping to achieve, let alone the brains to use diplomatic means to achieve it. Their refusal to accept the two islands Russia offered them is a good evidence of their incoherent foreign policy. Just repeating like a robot "we want all 4 islands", "we want takeshima" isn't going to get you anywhere. The reason their foreign policy is so inadequate is because nobody is actually in charge of their foreign policy, but that's a different topic.

-13 ( +12 / -25 )

Posted in: Trump allies in disarray as Democrats push impeachment See in context

I read the full transcript. The Ukrainian president does not seem pressured at all, in fact, he is the one pushing for more cooperation with the United States. However, the fact that, Trump withheld the military aid after that phone call means that, he was waiting to see if Ukraine will do what he asked for, which enters the sphere of bribery and corruption.

Constitutional experts have said that, this may violate the campaign financing law, but it is not unconstitutional. Whether this is an impeachable crime depends entirely on the subjective decision by the congress. It would take at least 20 republicans for Trump to be impeached, which means, it is not going to happen. It is a weak case in my opinion, and a waste of time. If anything, Trump is going to use this to his advantage. Democrats would be better advised to focus on the elections instead.

-12 ( +2 / -14 )

Posted in: EU, Japan sign agreement to bypass China's 'new Silk Road' See in context


Facts speak for themselves, Sasho. This is the most recent Euro survey, and as you can see, Bulgaria ranks the last in thinking they have benefited from the EU, and overall have the least trust in the EU. (= It used to be over 80 percent just few years ago, today it's less than 50. That says a lot.

Also, you project way too much. I am not Russophile, and i don't hate anybody, other than England. I actually dislike Russia, and think they are meddling in our internal affairs and should be punished for that. Other than that, i am not really interested in Russia. I see them as poor, undeveloped oligarchy who exist because we gave them culture, religion and language.

I am also not "old". I just turned 30, and i have spend most of my time living in the Untied States. I speak the truth as i see it. It wasn't JT editors, it was the EU leaders driven by France and Germany that keep criticizing Hungary and others for doing business with China while THEY are doing the exact same thing. The transportation market is not only in "west Europe", it is in ALL of Europe, but obviously France and Germany being in the center makes up the largest market, and all the periphery countries travel back and forth. I am saying if the EU continues to be ruled by the Franko-German alliance, which benefits only them in expanse of everybody else, and if they continue to break their own rules, lie about it, and destroy our economies, we should leave. I don't want to be ruled by a French, they can't even rule their own country. Their country is a mess, and now they want to impose their socialism into other countries in a cunning way. They pretend to care about human rights while in reality they are just protecting their own market.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Posted in: EU, Japan sign agreement to bypass China's 'new Silk Road' See in context

The hypocrisy and double standards of the European Union is on another level. They say that we see what we know, the fact that, so few people see their disgusting and unbelievable hypocrisy is really sad, because it tells you how little people know about what is happening in Europe.

The so called 17+1 countries are almost all part of the EU, so therefore, they are not "in EU's backyard" they ARE the EU. Second, they are not "eastern European" they are "central" and "south" European. Third, why is Chinese investment in those countries seen as if they are poor and they need China to invest in them, but Chinese investment in the Northwest European countries seen as "big boys doing business"?

Let's look at the facts, something missing from this, and all other articles. The facts are that, Chinese investment in Germany alone is several TIMES more than Chinese investment in all these 17 countries part of the EU. The reason China has lumped them together is because their markets are too small for individual investments. Germany alone has more population than these 17 countries combined. That's the reason why they are grouped together.

Why is it OK for China to invest in Germany, France, UK and Italy but not in Poland, Hungary or Greece? German and French PM's went to China to beg on their knees for Chinese investments, then as soon as they return to Europe, they start criticizing Hungary for doing business with China. Are you serious? Is nobody seeing this hypocrisy?

England was the first country to join the Chinese-led bank. So does that mean England is now looking Eastward, and they need EU to help them with more money? Why is that not the narrative? Why is that the narrative for SOME countries, but not for others?

And i haven't even talked about the way the EU, driven by France, is destroying the periphery countries in the most cunning and despicable way possible while smiling and pretending to care about "the European family". For example, France is trying to destroy the Bulgarian transportation industry because we are dominating on the market, and French over paid labor unionized firms can't compete. So what do they do? The French president comes up with a law essentially killing our industry in the name of some BS excuse like "they're not paid good enough", which is an utter and despicable cunning LIE. So they are killing our industries and then get mad at us for welcoming Chinese investment? So we are not allowed to do business with China, only France and Germany are allowed to do business with China?

Next, the German hypocrisy. I'll just give one recent example. Volkswagen recently announced plans to build their largest manufacturing plant in another country. The choices were between Bulgaria and Turkey. Bulgaria, a member of the EU vs Turkey, human-rights violating, dictator ruled non-EU member. Just few days ago they announced they will be building it in Turkey instead of supporting a fellow member of the EU. But that's not all. It gets worse. It turns out, Erdogan had not only given them a tons of money to make them build the plant there, but the deal they've made turned out to be against the EU rules for free trade. So Germany's largest company, that is partly owned by the State of Germany, is VIOLATING the EU rules in order to benefit by building a very expensive high value factory in a supposed enemy of the EU instead of choosing a democratic FELLOW member of the EU. Yep, that's Germany for you. Don't expect to hear that from DW.

But France is so much worse. Their push for internal trade restrictions are against the EU rules, but they don't give a damn. So they push for laws that benefit their own industries by destroying the industries of fellow members by passing laws that are against the EU, and then they go in front of the camera talking about the European family and how THEY -- the superior ones -- must help them -- the inferior ones.

England did the right thing leaving. I am sure they will not be the last. I don't know about other nations but public opinion in BG is rapidly shifting against the EU. People see their nasty hypocrisy and double standards and they don't like it.

-5 ( +10 / -15 )

Posted in: Japanese cattle farmers fear U.S. trade deal will be death knell See in context

There is nothing special about the agriculture industry. They are in the business of producing and selling food. If you can't compete, find another job.

Kawai agreed, saying: "I wonder what the government is thinking about food safety and self-sufficiency rate."

They will do and say anything to get the govt. to protect them from competition, not because they care about the country, but because they care about their own profits, which is understandable, they are looking after their own interests, but the govt. should look after the interests of ALL citizens, not just a small group. It is in the best interest of Japanese people to have as much foreign competition as possible.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Posted in: 'Comfort women' exhibition should be reopened, Aichi governor says See in context

its presence could give the false impression that Japan has accepted South Korea's claim the women were forcibly taken by the Japanese military.

So they openly admit they don't recognize Comfort Women to be sexual slaves. Then what are they apologizing for? They pretend to apologize for something they vehemently deny, then get angry at the Koreans for not accepting their apologies.

It's amazing how they think they can have their cake and eat it too. Reminds me of another island nation with the same mindset.

There is a cultural difference here too. In Japan, the process matters more than content. I've been told many times before "You always apologize first, then ask why". For them, just apologizing, or pretending to apologize is more important than actually meaning it or resolving the conflict. They expect the conflict to be resolved just by pretending to have apologized, even if they keep denying what they are supposedly apologizing for.

There is also a reluctance in Japan to apologize honestly because it's seen as an admission of defeat and admission of inferiority. You can see this attitude on all levels of society. I still remember when there was a scandal between the governor of Okinawa and Abe. Abe used a word that caused an outrage in Okinawa, and the governor asked Abe to apologize. In response, instead of apologizing, Abe said "if you're asking me to stop using that word again, well, i don't need to use it anyway". A typical Japanese attitude. It would take a cultural change in Japan for Koreans to get their recognition and apology.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

Posted in: U.S., Japan sign limited trade deal, leaving autos for future talks See in context

Abe's signature looks like a math equation.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Johnson confronted by angry parent at hospital See in context

Very few people care about Bulgaria one way or the other.

And yet your media vehemently adheres to those rules. For someone who doesn't care, they seem very dedicated to their job. But i wasn't specific enough. The rules are, when it comes to BG, it's either nothing or negative. If there is a story they can't not report, they would put a negative spin on it. If there is a story they can't put a negative spin on, they don't report it. Those are the rules. I didn't invent the rules. I am just describing them for people with weak observational skills. I am not deriving any conclusions either, i rather let people do that on their own. You state a conclusion with no facts. I state facts with no conclusion.

By the way, did your media report on the English pedophile who got arrested in BG last week for molesting Bulgarian kids? Yep, that's what i thought. Just another fact.

I also find it funny how you try to convince me that the anti-Bulgarian people in your country do not represent the majority, and yet you want me to believe YOU represent the majority.

Lol you think government run healthcare leads to high costs? Tell me how much more expensive NHS is than the "market based" US system is? Hint: it's not.

Healthcare in the US is not market based anymore. It used to be in the past, but it hasn't been since at least 2 decades. Healthcare in the US is based on the single payer system, and that's why it's so expensive, because there is no price competition. Some parts of the healthcare industry are not single payer based, such as the eye laser industry, and those industries where there is market competition are the cheapest ones. I don't know why it's so difficult for people to accept a basic observation and 5th grade logic. If the govt. is the sole payer, then what incentive does a hospital has for reducing prices? If you are a hospital, and you know the govt. is paying for your customers, why on earth would you want to cut prices? You have no reason to cut prices, you have reasons to raise prices knowing the govt. can never run out of money. Same goes for college tuition with the govt. guaranteed student loans. Prices go down only when there is competition, in the absence of competition, prices go up.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Johnson confronted by angry parent at hospital See in context

That's what you get from a government run healthcare. Inefficient management, long waiting lines and high costs. I just googled that hospital and here's what i found. The hospital is run by an agency which is part of the NHS. So, a government agency runs another government agency which runs a state owned hospital. And they wonder why is the hospital not run efficiently? I guess the only way to fix the problem is by creating another govt. agency that should be in charge of the first two.

Few months ago i watched on the Bulgarian news about a Bulgarian woman who have lived in England for over 32 years. She had a brain tumor, and the English hospital had booked her an appointment for 51 weeks from then! She immediately flew back to BG, went to visit a private hospital (a Japanese one, actually), where she underwent a brain surgery and her life was saved in 3 hours. Of course, news like that will never, ever appear on the English media because they violate two essential and core terms of service rules. Rule number 1 - never speak positively of BG. Rule number two - never speak negatively of England.

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

Posted in: Boris Johnson likens Britain to Hulk in Brexit fight See in context

They should leave as soon as possible for their own sake. Their economy is almost in a recession, and their currency has fallen at an all time record low, even though nothing has actually changed since 3 years ago. It is the fear of uncertainty that is causing this turmoil, and the more they choose to prolong this, the worse it is going to be. There is no deal that would please them. The only possible deal that the EU would agree to sign with them is one that keeps the UK in the single market in exchange for complying with their rules and regulations, which means, they would still have to deal with the exact same rules, just not have a say in making them. The best option for them is to leave without a deal. There will be some short term turmoil but nothing as apocalyptic as they make it out to be.

They don't need to negotiate a "free trade deal", if they really want to have a free trade, all they have to do is .. not tax their imports. That's it. Free trade does not require a deal or a negotiation, that's why it's called "free", as in "free" from regulation. A managed deal requires years of negotiation. Just because somebody taxes your exports does not mean you have to do the same. Free trade is a unilateral decision.

I watched some of the latest news on this topic, and i am still amazed at the utter lack of dialogue between the two sides and the lack of clarity on the issue. Some people advocate for having no tariffs, but their arguments are utterly ridiculous and often self-defeating. Their claim that "they need us more than we need them" is ridiculous. Literally nobody that i saw made any real economic argument that actually makes sense and is based on principle.

Some of the commentators here had linked a video of the former WTO director Pascal Lemy, which i watched, but the guy is clueless. He makes multiple false assumptions and his understanding of economics is wrong. He thinks less exports means less production and less jobs. That's not true. There is no connection between less exports and less production. You can still produce the stuff you are more competitive in, and import the stuff that others are more competitive in. More imports does not mean less jobs, in means less jobs in the export industries, and more in the service sector industries. Cheaper imports is good for people. They only look at it from the point of view of the production industries, not from the point of view of the consumer.

Perhaps if Boris had better understanding of economics, he could've explain that to the public so they can support him, then again, it's a different culture, things work differently there as they do in Japan. I think this comes back to what i said earlier, of not having a culture of persuading others to support you, but rather having a culture of "i have the power, i will now do what i want, i am not obligated to give you any explanations".

It would be interesting to see if he manages to drag their country out of the EU. He would deserve a medal if he did that.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Posted in: Gov't tightens rules to clamp down on smartphone use while driving See in context

@Chip Star and Yubaru

The reason why law enforcement is so weak in Japan is because both prefectural governments and local police have no incentive to write tickets, because the money from these fines do not stay in the prefecture, but go directly into the central government. Over 70% of the budget of each prefecture is funded through the central government instead of local taxes or fees. If over 60% or 70% of the budget of a prefecture was funded by local taxes, you know the local governments would make sure the police write as many tickets as they can, and the police would have the incentive to do that too, knowing the more tickets they write, the more their budget grows, and the more their wages increase. Another motivation would be to have a quota system like most States have in America, and a reward system too. When you link the work of a policeman to his or her career development or wage, you would incentivize better law enforcement.

The focus in Japan is never towards the system and the incentives it generates that govern people's behavior, it is always about human personality.

Here's a quick example that illustrates what i mean. Suppose you hire two people to pick apples. Person A and Person B. You pay Person A for each basket he fills. You pay Person B for each hour of work. Which person would pick more apples? Obviously Person A. Not because Person B is more lazy or bad person, but because the incentives he has are different. Now, if this was in Japan, they would not point at the flawed system, but blame Person B for not "ganbaring" enough.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Posted in: Revamped cabinet lineup signals Abe's gambit to stay in power See in context

maintaining intraparty unity

There is no intraparty unity in the LDP. It may come as a surprise to many to find out that Japan is more similar to the US in this regard than it is to Europe or other East Asian countries. Japan, much like the US has diversity within the ruling party. While political power in Japan is heavily concentrated in the central government, and in particular the LDP, it is not concentrated into 1 person, but rather it is dispersed into factions within the LDP. Power is concentrated in the leaders of each faction group, which in essence is an interest group of people. This is partly due to the multiple-member district electoral system in Japan. The existence of factions within the LDP is one of the reasons the govt. appears so dysfunctional in passing laws. Conflicts among various interests are usually ironed out before a bill is introduced to the Diet. It's very similar to the US, only in the US, it's not group of people, but individual politicians, which is again mostly due to the electoral system. Because party funding is almost non-existent in the US, politicians become dependent, or at least very sensitive to demands of interest groups that finance their campaign. In both US and Japan political power is very fragmented, but for two different reasons.

Because of the peculiarities of the electoral system in Japan, parties, rather than individual politicians, have power. It is very common to see parties in Japan acting like an individual candidate would act in America. For example, forming a party just to pass a specific law. Not based on principle of ideology, but just to pass one legislation. We see that all the time. Most recently with the NHK party. If that was in the US, it would've been a single candidate fighting for that cause, but in Japan, because the electoral system is based on groups, groups get formed for that one purpose. In Nagoya, the ruling party there is called "no taxes" or something like that, again, a small faction formed just for one specific purpose, and then acts as a wing for the LDP which holds prefectures and prefectural parties dependent on them by having a centralized finance.

Change in the US happens much easier, because all you need to do is vote for enough politicians who would support what you want, wheres in Japan, new parties have to be voted in who would attach themselves to the LDP and push for what they want. The system in Japan is centered around the rural vote and corporate interests. If any small party tries to challenge LDP, they can just shut down their financing because of the financial centralization, at least that's the fear. The only way to change the system is if you do it from within by voting in smaller parties who would attach themselves to the LDP, and push for financial decentralization of the country. That's why i put so much hope in Ishin no Kai, because they want to do just that, and if they are able to change Osaka, they might get support from other prefectures like Nagoya. Once momentum is build, things happen very fast.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Posted in: 2 court cases highlight paternity leave issue in Japan See in context

Sweden and other Scandinavian nations boast the best record for supporting parents.

Utterly false. Fake news. According to Pew Research Center, even Japan has longer paid paternity leave than Sweden. In Europe, the best record for supporting parents is in Estonia followed by Bulgaria, and then Hungary. Sweden is not even in top 15 in Europe for paid parental leave. Of course, Sweden has a good image which must be maintained even if we have to lie about it, while Bulgaria and Estonia have bad image, which must be maintained even if we have to lie by omission. That's how it is in the Media World.


When it comes to Japan, the professor from Ritsumeikan University was explicit. The problem is not the lack of paternal leave, the problem is that if you take it, you get punished, which discourages others from taking it out of fear, not out of loyalty for their company. They are not loyal, they are scared. And why are they scared? Because there aren't a lot of good paying jobs on the market, which is the result of protectionist policies and high taxation. If people knew they can just quit and get another good paying job, they would not be afraid to take parental leave, in fact, the boss would be afraid to treat workers badly knowing they can just quit anytime.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

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