JeffLee comments

Posted in: Israeli troops round up Palestinian men in northern Gaza as U.N. warns aid operation is 'in tatters' See in context

Gathered and stripped their prisoner....What inspiration they were based on?

Suicide bombing with bombs taped to the bomber's body concealed under the clothes is kind of a thing in that region, in case you weren't aware.

All Israel is doing is causing opposition to its injustice.

I believe the aim is show the Gazans the consequences of supporting or turning a blind eye to Hamas all these years, allowing it to set up its military operations in and near schools and hospitals.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Posted in: I do care about ‘use-by’ dates, but the rules for ‘expiration’ dates in Japan are so strict that I don’t mind if they are a week or so out of date. See in context

A medical expert wrote an article a few years back about expiry dates for drugs and other healthcare products like sunblock, which are often 2 years after they're made. The gist is that it is nearly always ok to keep using, although the active ingredients may see some faded efficacy.

My 15 year sunblock from Canada (where prices are waaaay cheaper than Japan) works just as well now as when it was new. I'd also have a hard time sleeping at night when having a cold or flu without my 10 year old drowsy inducing cold medicine from Canada.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: Asian shares mostly higher ahead of key U.S. jobs report See in context


The outcome of the spring labor negotiations in April will be the key consideration.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan logs record ¥2.58 tril current account surplus in October See in context

A lot of positive economic news this week, from Japan and the US. It's looking more and more likely they will be able to achieve soft landings as they return to pre-covid normality.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Posted in: Colonized countries rarely ask for redress over past wrongs − the reasons can be complex See in context

The Ottomans owe big time. Most of the problems in the Middle East today can be traced back to the collapse of their empire early in the 20th century and the chaos and carnage that ensued, 400 years after they had colonized the region. In the meantime, the Ottomans systemically and extensively enslaved peoples across the Balkans and eastern Africa for hundreds of years. Make the Turks pay!

And don’t get me started on the Mughals.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: We feel we're in a crisis and are striving to coordinate resources to significantly improve the situation. See in context

And the few human resources at Narita are poorly allocated. The immigration counters for Japanese citizens are overstaffed, as the citizens breeze through in seconds, while everyone else is made to wait forever. How about fewer staff in one section and more in the other?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: 'Oppenheimer' to get theatrical release in Japan, after all See in context

 ...the decision was made, “following months of thoughtful dialogue...

That's because Japan feels it needs to monopolize the global A-bomb narrative. For example, Japanese audiences are likely to be surprised, if not confused, when confronted by the fact that the bomb was originally developed to use against Germany.

-21 ( +26 / -47 )

Posted in: Tokyo makes high school free for all families, even the rich ones See in context

Encourage people to use public education is absolutely correct. 

Many of those people would if they could. Many, if not most, of the expensive private high schools serve the students who are unable to get into cheaper public high schools. This is a shameful situation for a developed country.

As the article explains, senior high school is optional in Japan, therefore the authorities feel it's right to charge money for it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: McDonald's eyes speedy ramp-up to 50,000 restaurants worldwide by 2027 See in context

They certainly need a lot more in Japan. The Japanese absolutely love McD's!

The drive-in one where I live is often backed up a couple of blocks of waiting cars, totally blocking the left lane of a 4-lane major road. If you're on foot and want lunch there, expect to wait in line for 15 or 20 minutes, sometimes even outside of lunch hours. I see line ups at the various McDonalds I walk past. Definately not enough supply to meet Japan's huge demand.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Court rules Japan's dual nationality ban constitutional See in context

Article 11 states explicitly that if you get gaikoku nationality, you automatically lose your nippon nationality. So, I don't understand the purpose of these court cases. If these people don't like the law, why don't they petition for a constitutional amendment. As it stands, the Kyushu officials' actions were perfectly constitutional.

7 ( +19 / -12 )

Posted in: Narita or Haneda: Which airport should I fly into? See in context

I prefer Narita due to the direct dedicated rail service. For us in west-central Tokyo, Haneda requires two trains and then a bus from Shinjuku (ugh) or four commuter trains (double ugh).

Narita is a one 10-minute train and then the Narita Express with reserved seating. Travel time is the same but the Narita journey is a lot less stressful and reliable.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: 14-year-old girl riding bike seriously injured after being hit by car; driver arrested See in context

Police quoted the driver as saying the cyclist appeared from the side suddenly in front of her.

It sounds like it may have been the cyclist's fault, not that that makes a difference in Japan.

20 ( +24 / -4 )

Posted in: Japan's jobless rate falls to 2.5% in October See in context

Once again the BS unemployment statistics report! 

The report makes sense to me. I've lived in places with high jobless rates: Canada and the UK in the 1980s, and Japan today is totally different. I just don't see lots of Japanese adults in Japan loafing around town with lots of free time in the middle of the week, apart from the elderly, including in provincial areas like Fukushima. Everyone seems to be busy working, shopping, or taking care of kids.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: The atmosphere of the neighborhood is bad, so residents do not walk about at night. See in context

It's a fairly commercial area right beside a major entertainment district, not much of a "neighborhood." Who are the customers? I'm assuming the streetwalkers choose that "neighborhood" - and not others - for a particular reason.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Posted in: The redelivery rate for home deliveries is rising as the number of parcels increases due to online shopping. This is placing a growing burden on the logistics industry, which is suffering from a labor shortage. What can be done to alleviate the problem? See in context

Delivery companies can be more flexible and rational. I just received an email notice from Kuroneko say it will be delivering my squash racket (ordered online) between 7 and 9 tonight. That’s the exact time when my wife and I will be out for dinner!

In order to change the delivery time, I need to register with the stupid company, handing over my personal data, setting up a secure password, etc. Just for one delivery! If they’re complaining about follow-up delivery runs, it’s usually their own fault. It’s up to them to solve their problems, not me.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Posted in: Shane MacGowan, hard-drinking poet of The Pogues, dies at 65 See in context

He was born in Pembury, grew up in Royal Tunbridge Wells and won a scholarship to Westminster School. How working-class Irish can you get! LOL.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Posted in: 9-month-old girl being carried by mother dies after car backs into them at supermarket See in context

I'm surprised because nearly everyone in this country reverse parks, especially in crowded and busy lots, like those at supermarkets.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to recommend A-bomb photo archive for UNESCO heritage list See in context

Great idea. While they are at it, UNESCO can complement the collection with other archives showing Japan's road to war: the Rape of Nanking, almost total destruction of Manila, the slave labor conditions along the Death Railway in Burma, etc. -- ie, the horrors that the Hiroshima bombing was aimed at ending.

-9 ( +16 / -25 )

Posted in: Japan NPO director convicted in overseas organ transplant case See in context

I suppose the recipients owe their lives to Kikuchi, who will now be jailed for his actions.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan, Vietnam to strengthen security and economic ties See in context

The vast majority of passengers seemed to be groups of Vietnamese that had QR codes

I assume that’s very new initiative and a welcome one. The re-entry lines at immigration after a Vietnam flight arrives have been re horrendous, stretching forever, and only 2 booths are usually open. Expect to wait over half an hour.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: What's the best way to salvage your day after a bad night’s sleep? See in context

Book an hour in a flat-bed booth in an internet cafe near your workplace for a kip. Works for me.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Posted in: Locals use big-city thinking to bring Gunma onsen town back from brink See in context

I was greatly disappointed in Minakami. The ads always show all sorts of river based activities, like rafting and canyoning, but when we went there during the week in September, the reality was completely different: deadsville. The local operators had either closed for the season or were not offering anything, even though the weather was hot and sunny. The natural features were great, but nothing to do there you couldn't do on the outskirts of Tokyo like Okutama or Chichibu.

Good luck with rebuilding the infrastructure, but it really depends on whether the local tourism operators will be willing to cater to visitors outside the national holidays, weekends and limited peak seasons.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Posted in: Six teenagers to go on trial over beheading of French teacher See in context


The first Muslims came to France centuries ago, following the occupation of Spain by the Moors in the eighth century. 

"Came to France." LOL, They certainly weren't invited. A Muslim army invaded France in 792. However, it was defeated by  Christian Frankish and other local forces. Their victory stopped the spread of Islam in western Europe beyond Spain, which Muslims from Morocco had invaded and conquered earlier in the century.

11 ( +16 / -5 )

Posted in: Japanese workers took 62% of paid leave allocation in 2022: gov't survey See in context

Japanese loyalty to business would make a US republican business owner shed a happy tear..

That's an odd comment, considering the part of the article that states: "... workers in Japan used 60 percent of their paid leave last year, putting Japan second-to-last ahead of the United States."

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Posted in: The central government and municipalities, which aim to make Japan a travel destination, need to provide long-term support for accommodation facilities to secure and train workers. See in context

The government doesn't need to provide "support" to hotels, which are notorious for overworking and underpaying their staff. If those businesses can't do their business, then they should go out of business or find another business.

Japan doesn't need this industry. There are around 130 jobs for every 100 job-seekers in Japan. A government effort to funnel precious workers into an industry that pays rock-bottom wages makes no sense and will eventually dampen Japan's economic growth and vitality. It needs to promote high-wage industries and allow low-wage ones to fall by the wayside.

1 ( +9 / -8 )

Posted in: Why Finland is blaming Russia for sudden influx of migrants on its eastern border See in context

the USA's wars for oil 

Wrong. The US is basically self-sufficient for its oil, apart from imports from Canada. Any supposed "war for oil" in the Mid-east tends to affect/benefit China, Japan and Europe more than anyone else.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan's lower house approves ¥13.2 tril FY2023 extra budget See in context

But what if the BOJ… decides to tighten monetary policy to deal with inflation

There's a good chance they will start doing so by late this year or nearly next year. Then we'll see if your little scenario pans out.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan's lower house approves ¥13.2 tril FY2023 extra budget See in context

when will (the debt) be paid

They don't need to pay it back. But if they did, who would they pay it to?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: Undeclared income of Japan's wealthy hits record high See in context


Overseas dividends are always hidden. That's the whole point.

If you don't mind taking the risk of stiff penalties, as this article indicates.

You don't need more than one Japanese accountant.

My original guy passed away. I had to get another one.

No overseas brokerages would ever care about your Japanese my number.

Except all the ones who won't open an account for you without a "foreign tax number," which in Japan is My Number.

You seem to be living in the '90s. Such good times!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: In the land of the rising stocks, clouds may be arriving See in context

This was a bubble inflated deliberately in response to Plaza.

Plaza also involved Germany, France and the UK, and they didn't experience the kind of bubble Japan did. What's more, the stronger yen following the accord didn't slow down Japanese exports. Japan's surplus indeed expanded. Japan's bubble was Japan's doing. It was caused by homegrown stock and real-estate speculators who took on crazy levels of risk they couldn't handle in lemming-like fashion. The Plaza excuse is a false narrative and is used to blame foreigners.

This time, Japan's stock valuations are driven more by earnings than anything else following a structural and regulatory shift toward shareholder capitalism, started by Koizumi. The rise in share prices to current levels has been gradual and fairly steady, in contrast to the frenzy of the late 80s and early 90s.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

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