Japan Today

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Posted in: 2-year-old girl dies after being hit by vehicle in supermarket car park See in context

Tragic. 2 years old, running free in a car park! Another avoidable death of a child.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: Rolling Stone magazine sparks storm with Boston bombing suspect cover See in context

Noriyosan73 " The USA is a democracy and the Amendments must be protected."

Democracies are interesting. The article is not specific but it seems like a vocal minority are complaining whereas the majority will simply decide not to purchase it if they don't like or agree with Rolling Stone's cover story. But this vocal minority has managed to get the magazine removed from thousands and thousands of stores across the country. A kind of partial censorship by a minority. Not very democratic.

Personally, I think the cover is in bad taste but I wouldn't complain about it or lobby to have it removed; let each person make their own decision and purchase it or not. And I am still interested in reading the article because, cover photo aside, Rolling Stone does great journalism.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Posted in: Cop arrested for filming up woman's skirt in Yokohama See in context

Just wondering out loud here. If a woman wears a skirt so short (which you often see in Japan) that one can easily see her panties when viewed from a lower angle (escalator/stairs), is it illegal to take a photo of this? I'm not talking mirrors on the shoes or hidden camera in a bag stunts. And I'm not condoning the upskirt photo practice, just wondering where the legal line is between being photographed by someone in public without consent (which I do not think is illegal?) versus some pervert going out of their way to get a photo?

In regards to this story, once found guilty (which he has admitted) he should be fired but I'm sure he won't.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Con man poses as doctor, defrauds hospitals of Y25 mil See in context

Does the defrauding of 25m yen in salaries mean that he was able to 'work' and 'earn' this much money but was then found not to be a qualified doctor? If so, that's amazing. How long would it take him to earn that much posing as a doctor? 1 year? More? How many patients would he have seen in that time? How much interaction would he have had with other medical staff? In other countries there would be a thorough investigation of how he was able to carry off this deception because fake documents is far too lame an excuse.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Zimmerman acquittal shifts race issue in U.S. back to the fore See in context

Totally with Cleo, Bum-san and lucabrasi on this. An armed member of public pursues (stalks?) an unarmed member of public, which leads to a confrontation and the armed person shoots the unarmed person dead. Police question the armed person and based on his version of events and some bumps and cuts, let him go free. No trial or thorough investigation.

Nothing to do with race. Just crazy laws in gun-loving wlid-west USA.

Make sure you are armed and a person you want to hurt or kill is not. Start a fight based on some made-up story (hey! you! I saw you take that guys wallet!) and after they hit you, shoot them.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Head patrol officer busted for molesting woman on train See in context

Probably let him resign rather than fire him so he could retain his pension. Doesn't Japan have watchdog organisations that can raise the profile of such incidents, challenge the lenient punishments and thus pressure for change?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Apple colluded on e-book prices, judge finds See in context

What I took away from the trial coverage was that Apple's objective was to ensure they always recieved the lowest price from the publisher (i.e. if Amazon got a book at a low price, Apple would get thecsame book at the same low price) and that they would earn 30% of whatever that price was. This did not fix the pricing, as the publishers were free to set the retail prices wherever they wanted. This was an agency model.

However, Amazon's arrangement with publishers at that time allowed them to buy at prices determined by the publishers and then sell at any price they wanted to. This was a retail model.

Apple was not in a position to force Amazon to change its arrangement with the publishers. The publishers were free to sell to Amazon & Apple at prices they determined but Apple's arrangement made sure they never recieved a higher price than Amazon. So I am not clear how Apple is accused and found guilty of price fixing?

I can see why the publishers would be keen to pursue the agency model as they can control the retail prices. And the income from this accounts for virtually all their revenues. But for Apple, the revenue off ebooks is probably an inconsequential amount of their overall revenues, and the delta between 30% of a $9.99 sale vs a $14.99 sale (for arguably a limited number of books that are alleged to have increased in price due to Apple's actions) would probably be a tiny fraction of that. This motivation for publishers and lack of motivation for Apple might explain why the publishers settled and Apple went on to fight it?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Student dies of alcohol poisoning at party in Ibaraki See in context

Seems hard to believe he'd get alcohol poisoning in 3 hours drinking just beer and umeshu. Something more to this I think.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Posted in: Woman forced to wear bunny ears as penalty for missing sales targets See in context

Haha, I just stood on my soap box in the '7 year old gets mouth taped' thread, asserting humilation is not used in the work place so why use it in schools!?....then the next story I see is this. Unfortunately I stand corrected.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Teacher tapes up mouth of girl, 7, to stop her spreading germs See in context

I'm with Cleo, a responsible teacher would have spoken sympathetically to the child to see if there was any specific trouble the child was having in getting a mask for school. If yes, follow up. If no, and still forgets then speak to parents. Each day the child would be provided with a mask by the school (so they don't avoid the lunch serving duty) and parents might be asked to replace the school masks and to make sure the child has them for school in future.

But as another member said, the whole 'wear a mask when serving food' rule (for all children regardless if sick or not) seems pointless if they are in the same room all day for classes and probably playing together in breaks, all without masks.

Those members who think humiliation of a 7 year old is appropriate and perhaps prepares them for adult life, please let me know if they ever see such treatment of adults in a work setting? Does the boss make you stand in a corner? Tape your mouth? Wear a 'dunce' hat? In 30 years of factory and office work in more than 10 countries, I have never seen such a thing. The closest I've come is Japan (of course), where arriving even 30 seconds after the morning bell (this is in a bank, not school) required walking the length of the room to stand in front of the supervisor's desk to bow and apologise.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: Education ministry will allow all schools to open on Saturdays from next year See in context

To read many of the comments one would think the article said that the government has mandated all public schools to open on Saturdays. As i read it, public schools now have free choice to open on Saturdays whereas before the were explicitly restricted from doing so apart from 'special occaisions'.

Does anyone know whether students are mandated (by school or government) to attend should their school decide to start opening on a Saturday?

I completely agree that there should be no need for Saturday school or for such wide spread juko classes. Extra classes on a specific topic that a student may be struggling with might be useful but not the shadow school system seen in Japan. Let children enjoy their childhoods.

Improve the quality, reduce the quantity, balance the fun & family time and maybe these kids might grow up to question and change the workng culture in Japan.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Suspended jail for ex-Olympus execs in Japan cover-up See in context

Setence seems increbily lenient for such a large fraud,covered up for many years, found and outted by a foreigner CEO, who wias in turn kicked out for having rhe gaul to speak the truth, It we interesting if some JT members can share reaction in the J-Press or Media.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Banks see future in IT hires See in context

This article seems bogus. IT has been recognized by banks as a major competitive advantage for many years. I worked in IT at one of the big firms mentioned in this article. Around year 2000 the firm was spending over $3 billion a year on IT globally. Just the cost of running the day to day operations - ie the cost just to maintain and support the existing PC's, applications and back-end infrastructure - was $1 billion per year. They were also hiring maths professors and odd-ball geniuses to develop their derivatives systems in those days. And pre the tech bubble bursting, the banks all went to casual dress policies in order to attract the geeks.

The 'story' is simply that after several years of massive cuts to IT staff and spend, the markets are recovering and so they can go back to what they were doing before, albeit with new challenges like mobile, cloud, algo and low latency.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Elderly driver arrested after killing two pedestrians See in context

Magnet you are correct. Right foot for accelerator & brake, left foot for clutch. Heel-toe left foot (clutch-brake) for the small % who can do it, typically on a race track.

My father is 82 and still driving to the local shops (2 miles). He is definitely high risk and knows it but in the rural UK place where he lives, the alternative is an unaffordable and hard to get taxi or try to find some samaritan who would give him a lift or do the shopping for him. The nearest bus stop is a mile away which, even if he could make it going, there is no way he could carry shopping back that distance. Home delivery by supermarkets might be another possibility but I suspect not everything is available, there are cut-off times and the once aweek shop is the only time he really leaves home. He has driven over 60 years without an accident....not that this says anything about future events.

Not condoning the gambling with people's safety, including his own, but highlighting that giving up driving is extremely difficult for many reasons.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Hiroshima man kills grandfather, uncle, then tries to kill himself See in context

Perhaps some of these cases are not 'depressed I want to die but first I'll take someone with me' events. Maybe, in some cases, the person snaps in rage and kills someone and only then in dispair, remorse or simply prefering death over the sure jail sentence they know is coming....they try to off thrmselves?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Biden asks Ecuador president to refuse Snowden asylum See in context

The US government is probably happy that the masses are more focused on 'what will happen to Snowden' than the information he has revealed. This might change once Snowden's destination is history but the publication of his stolen documents continues.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Car chased by police crashes into residence killing passenger See in context

Only charged with drunk driving, not vehicular manslaughter or whatever the similar law is in Japan?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Department store faces allegations of selling outrageous items to senile customers See in context

A judge ruled but a store refuted....how does that work

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: 1-yr-old girl left in car for 4 hours while mother plays pachinko See in context

I suspect the only reason the policeman noticed the car (and then the child in it) is because the engine was left running.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: What do you think of the amount of compensation in the form of salary, bonuses and stock options that are paid to top execs of multinational corporations? See in context

I agree the pay for top executives is obscenely high.

Perhaps the bigger problem is that they often recieve this pay regardless of the firm's performance. You see headlines of firms making record losses or stock price valuations in free-fall but the CEO still gets millions of dollars. If they had to risk little or no pay for bad years then I could accept high pay for good years.

On a case by case basis, there might be exectutives that are clearly responsible for products or a strategy that transforms a company and makes it billions. In which case they should be highly rewarded.

Also note that executive level positions carry much more risk of personal fines and imprisonment than non officer level staff, so this is priced into their pay.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan vows to help Philippines in China sea dispute See in context

Wasn't there a recent White House comment about USA encouraging a more syndicated approach by those nations with territorial disputes with China? If so, it's no surprise to see these two nations making headlines like this. China will clearly see USA is pulling these strings.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: Child killer loses appeal over life sentence See in context

I wish this story provided info on the grounds for appeal. Protesting innocence? Technicailty? Agrees guilty but feels sentence was too harsh?

If he is definitely guilty and admits such, then a life sentence is too lenient. Should be death penalty for child murders like this.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Prosecutors not to indict ex-soccer star Oku over threat to kill his wife See in context

Decided to take a financial penalty

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Age limit to be required for visitors to erotic Japanese art show at British museum See in context

The UK has the daily Sun newspaper which has featured photos of topless models on page 3 for decades and sells to all ages just like any newspaper. And newsagents feature the 'top shelf' porn magazines that, whilst sealed, have cover photos and headlines that have tantalized young boys for years.

Back on topic, as a parent I agree with the age rating for this Japanese art show. 16 years old, for the UK, is a reasonable age limit for such material.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: 12-year-old boy taken into custody over attacks on schoolchildren in Saitama See in context

Future J-policeman!

I can't help but feel pessimistic about this child's chances of getting the help he needs. Could be result of bad home life, could be victim of bullying, could be naturally unstable....whatever the problem, he needs professional help.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: I've watched so many Western men in Japan who were enamored with the 'kawaii' factor of Japanese women, marry them, completely ignoring, to their peril, that these women are children and have zero pro See in context

As a foreigner (UK) married to a Japanese lady for 15 years, my exprience is shock at the lack of attention one gets as husband after the children arrive. The dynamic of the family changed to mother & children with father left as almost an outsider whose role is just to finance the family. I am sure not all experience this but I have heard many tell me similar stories about feeling like a visitor in their home after the children arrive.

This is exacerbated by 12 hour work days Mon-Fri (kids and wife asleep when I leave home and when I return because she's laid down with thrm to get them to sleep and fallen asleep herself) then weekend children & wife doing ballet, piano, art classes etc which leave little time for dad and children or whole family time.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Posted in: Man sentenced to death for double murder in 2004 See in context

I disagree Spudman. If my wife or children were ever to fall victim to some of the savage and depraved attacks we often read about then I would want the person(s) guilty of it put to death. Better to remove such people from the world than pay USD$200k per year to imprison them and risk they some day get out and harm others.

In this case, if there is overwhelming evidence that Suzuki battered two elderly people to death over a money dispute, why should society pay large sums to maintain him for decades & allow him the opportunity to continue life. I assume in prison he would get to see his family during visits, take up education opportunities and might some day get released. How do the family of those mudered feel? Every paycheck, you would know some is going to pay room and board for the person who murdered your family members. Every birthday. Every new year etc.

I think that with some crimes it is better for society to simply remove those responsible. Do it humanely. Not for revenge. Like putting a ferocious dog to 'sleep' that has attacked people and can never be trusted again.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Posted in: Japanese dancer a hit on 'America’s Got Talent' See in context

Great to see a Japanese doing good on the global stage.

The routine seems to include Cyril Takayama's Head Drop illusion www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQKr_tCxww8

With some of David Elsewhere's routine www.youtube.com.sg/watch?v=MiLK7S2fXqQ

Comes together really well and was fun to watch.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: No. of suicides drops below 30,000 for first time in 15 years See in context

Adding to Yubaru's comment on changing demographic and decreasing population, perhaps another factor is the 2011 disasters. The shock and high death toll may have led to a period of reflection, concern for others and greater valuation of ones life which carried into 2012 and reflect, in part, the deceased suicides?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

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