inkochi comments

Posted in: Police holding cells evolving to meet Japan's changing demographics See in context

Calling it a "temporary residence" for people who've been arrested, Setsuko Miura, a director of the first detention administration division of the Metropolitan Police Department, says, "We try to create an environment where each person can take the time (to reflect)."

Never think that irony does not exist in Japan

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Posted in: As Japan OKs law to let more foreigners in, tiny rural town wants to go further See in context

Curiously even Japan has not only regional but eco-geograhic (eg. rural/urban) variations.

Perhaps the good old days of 我々の日本 realistically are gone, though SO many would deny or simply just not realise that.

Interestingly Australia is moving, again, far more significantly in the same direction, promising residency to semi-skilled workers who would go to remote or rural areas. But hitching a 12 hour ride on a dirt road to the neares (very small) town is not the same as a bus or single-carriage 1-2 hour trip to a largish center as in Japan. Language issues might be easier to deal with though.

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Posted in: Language skills remain major concern for foreign nursing care workers See in context

If patient is traumatized or has dementure, likely as not they would prefer their own L1. This is Japan so L1 likely is Japanese.

Institutions (hospitals, other service providers, bureaucracy, politicians) manipulating the language requirements is relevant to provision of service in the first place, but not as important is dealing with responsibilities and tasks at, say, the bedside.

Care givers (medical staff, others) can have all the skills, knowledge and compassion in the world. But unless their communication is adequate in the end those things mean very little.

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Posted in: Japanese school explains why it won't let cold schoolgirl wear tights under her skirt See in context

I always have found that rules do not exist in Japan until they are applied.

In this case they became applied - why? Probably due to noticeable contrast against a behavioral norm. Parent didn't know and having different common sense did not help. Child probably realised, seeing girls around her but at first it was not a big issue.

Rule was applied when girl's appearance out of the norm was noticed and the institution felt threatened. Enforcement of rule predictably, say from home-room teacher to student, but also the terse message to parent.

Two solutions are: work through system, lobbying PTA or similar, and so on; change schools

Not wearing tights (ie. following rule) is the alternative. BUT, student (and parent) are already marked by this event, so following the norm now is not completely possible.

General solution in the Japanese zone: find out the rules that do not exist but which are likely to be applied.

This may seem glib, and it is not always possible with so many presumptions of what is appropriate never even reaching the surface.

Alternatively, a cynical or satirical response like 'the rule is for maintaining the status quo of Japan being rorikomu paradaisu' does not help, but ironically does point to the kind of unreasonable belief such as

if your legs are warm, you won’t be able to concentrate.’

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Posted in: Japanese boy drowns during school trip to Australia See in context

Poor kid! Poor everyone around him!

Maybe irikandji jelly fish - very small, very toxic (

Sort of why no local people go swimming in summer in Cairns.

Also why unfashionable face to toe lycra suits are fashionable.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: 'Crazy Rich Asians' not clicking with Chinese audiences See in context

Pretty obvious:

China does not equal Asia;

Asian cultures and customs are not all generalisably Chinese.

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Posted in: An unlikely meditation on family in 'Shoplifters' See in context

The death made everything fall apart in th e movie- claiming welfare of the deceased. In hindsight, a odd kudos for My Number

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Posted in: Letters from Japan: 'Was I right to decline a first date at his house?' See in context

No shade of gray about this one - to the extent that I am not sure of the purpose of the article except the obvious choice which was made.

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Posted in: Trump warns of government shutdown next month over border security See in context

Except for the military, a government shutdown in the US is just that - perfect time to make a run for an unmanned or under-manned border.

Stupid Trump!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Austere detention center contrasts with Ghosn's globe-trotting lifestyle See in context

A kind of pathos.

But also for the system in Japan: Ghosn being held is likely to attract some unwanted spotlights (as #Cricky points out)

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Posted in: Purple walk See in context

Like weirdly walking through satin kniclers

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Posted in: The Rolling Stones plan 13 U.S. live dates next year See in context

The band returned to its blues roots in 2016 with the release of "Blue & Lonesome," which earned the Stones a Grammy Award for best traditional blues album.

Listening to their back-catalogue, you realise how much a blues more than a rock band the Stones always have been.

Great at dressing it up in rock and roll though for all those years - 6 decades and counting.

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Posted in: Mountain view See in context

Good shot - mid afternoon judging by the angle of the sun.

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Posted in: News of Ghosn's arrest stuns Nissan employees, customers See in context

Ghosn gone!

More troubling are problems with data falsification and so on with Nissan and Mitsubishi products, which are less-highlighted (or have been till now).

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Posted in: Fujitsu General develops neck cooler using Peltier devices See in context

Remarkable is the choice of model - pretty appropriate for a target sector of the market, I think.

In spite of the android-inspiring remote control unit, the item seems only as intrusive as other 'cold' products. Quite a sensible focus of cooling the artery though.

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Posted in: An increasing number of companies in Japan have banned employees from smoking during their work hours, aiming to resolve low productivity caused by their smoking breaks. Do you agree with this policy? See in context

There is something less gratifying about a sip by a water cooler than a drag on a durry outside the back entrance.

Also, in student-directed research on telecom employees a while ago in Sydney and repeated with students and workers as an exercise in Japan, we found students and workers tend not to smoke alone and that conversation is a priority, overwhelmingly about work or study.

Health didn't figure (except mental health only implicitly). So next research question: are exhaustion and stress (and their impact onwork or study of less concern than respiratory and carcenoigentic ailments?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: Under the current labor system in Japan, companies are required to keep employees who wish to continue working after retirement age until at least the age of 65. The government wishes to raise the ceiling to 70. Do you think that is a good idea? See in context

Um, where I was the last two years till 65 would have been at 60% salary at 63 years old.

In Australia, in 2013-14, the new government moved to have a staggered increase of retirement age to get pension to 70, saying 'The age of entitlement is over'. That policy has quietly been dropped - a good idea for a government doing very little to support or encourage employment of older people (over 45s).

Japan has been fundementally different to that, with space for old people to work, even if menial, manual and lowly remunerated. Moreover, lots of people in Japan have work as 'something to do'.

Finally the idea to put something happening at 65 to around 70 could come simply as a solvency measure to a government that even now is beoming stretched supporting the aging population.

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Posted in: Vietjet launches flights to Osaka See in context

Well, marketing is off to a good start.

Looking at this threesome, I don't really worry about the faux indigenous North American attire. Who would?

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Posted in: Garden party See in context

... her yellow stress ...

Putting that down to a typo.

Interesting to see a few 500 yen clear plastic umbrellas - a more practical choice for an event where the purpose is to see the important people.

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Posted in: Storage battery, 9 wind turbines installed at train station in Akita See in context

Nice idea I think

But maybe a little future tension with parcel delivery by drone if both it and wind power in urban areas take off .

Local birds might have an opinion too.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Would you recommend that people get a flu shot before the onset of winter? See in context

Sometimes there is no choice.

Often there is no choice but to go to work even if sick, either.

Best cure for flu is rest and fluids in warm bed in your own time, or drastic cooling of body if temperature flairs from 37 to 41 in an hour.

Who has time or recourse to that, in Japan, these days?

Flu-type viruses mutate rapidly, such as the virus at the end of a pandemic is different from the one at its onset. Consequently not a fan of flu vaccines.

Alternatively, stay away from serious flu environments (like the subway)

Or just suck it up and join the vaccination queue with all the other punters.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Posted in: Trampoline gymnastics See in context

Yes, pretty good photo

Just wondering if it was a one-of, or the best of a selection.

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Posted in: Passengers to be banned from carrying knives onto all trains in Japan from April See in context

Oh well - if steak tonight you had better go to the home center to get a set of knives by bus

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Posted in: Do you think there will be many democracies around the world in, say, 20 years from now? See in context

Not many now anyway,

Curiously, lots of Fan-theories about Game of Thrones envision democracy in Westeros at the end.

About as likely in this world as it is in that one.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: In your opinion, who has the most valid claim to the disputed isles known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China? See in context

The Okinawans.

But who has ever listened to them?

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Posted in: Disgusting Food Museum See in context



Casu marzu – maggot-infested cheese from Sardinia

would do my head in - and nose and stomach

Natto is understandable, but how could they include something as innocent as Vegemite (

It seem most cultures have their nose (or tongue) out of joint over this place.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan now has only two TV anime series that air in prime time during the week See in context

More like cutlural icons for the nostalgic now.

Devices are sucking up more attention-time now than TV ever did.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: U.S. to deploy over 5,200 troops to Mexico border See in context

Watching all of this unfold, I just think two things:

it has begun (though it probably began long ago)

Japan is an island country, where so many of the comentators reside and are not facing reality of having this problem on the national doorstep.

Maybe Canada should put troops at Niagara, along the St Lawrence, around the Great Lakes and along that 49th parallel - to keep out any Democrat caravan fleeing the US national divide.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: There has been some criticism in Japan of freelance journalist Jumpei Yasuda, who was freed after being held hostage in Syria for more than three years, that if you go to a dangerous place, despite the government urging you not to, and are taken prisoner, you get what you asked for (referred to in Japanese as jiko sekinin or self-responsibility). Do you agree with this view? See in context

Part of the job, risks.

A bit like those Brits (like the assistant of the Archbishop of Canturbury) going off to 'negotiate' freedom for hostages in Lebanon in the 1980s and getting to be hostages themselves for 3 years or more.They should have known but were either pompous, selfrighteous or totally naive.

Yasuda was not any of these I would say and knew the risks. Maybe just guilty of something like adrrenolin junkiness.

But did you see the look on his Mum's face after it was all over? Half relief, half 'You bastard, putting all of us through that!'

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Posted in: Do you think ordinances designed to restrict hate speech and eliminate discrimination infringe on freedom of speech? See in context

In the old days, yes, anti vilification laws got in the way of free speech.

Nowadays, no, such laws rein in people (or should do) whose access and use of increasingly varied media and whose lack of self-control have made free speech get out of hand.

In the future the balance MAY swing back again.

Such questions do my head in actually

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

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