JeffLee comments

Posted in: Kono says Japan will accept more foreign workers See in context

“Kono cited sports stars including tennis sensation Naomi Osaka, the daughter of a Japanese mother and a Haitian father, as an example of the benefits of welcoming outsiders.”

He’s kidding, right? Her and her family LEFT Japan very early on for the US, where she became successful. The US was the “welcoming” one, Japan presumably the “unwelcoming” one.

“I think everyone shall be welcome in Japan if they are willing to assimilate into Japanese society."

I wish Western officials would say that. "Integration" policies, especially in Europe, have proven unsuccessful and unpopular.

9 ( +15 / -6 )

Posted in: Japan's disasters highlight vulnerable infrastructure See in context

KIX should have been place closer to shore, like Hong Kong's airport, which also has two road links, not one like Kansai's.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: It’s time to consider placing limits on the number of people who enter as an anti-crowding measure. To maintain our pride as a tourism nation, harmonious coexistence with local residents is extremely important. See in context

I've large given up "sightseeing," unless it's in some obscure rural area. In Japan, I basically do no sightseeing at all.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Five important manners to remember when buying something at a Japanese convenience store See in context


 However I manage to have a small wallet out as I enter the store and hold it in the same hand that holds the handles of the basket, plus the shopping bag hooked over my forearm. 

Now, THAT'S a hassle. I used to do something like that, but a couple of years ago left my wallet in the basket or the counter and went home. This was stressful, since my gaijin and credit cards were inside. I had to retrace all my steps back to the combini where it was retrieved. Prefer not to go thru that again. Best to keep one's wallet and money safe inside one's own pocket until needed.

"I know it’s hard but I think it can be done with a little creativity

"Creativity," LOL. It shouldn't be so "hard." The cashier could use a little common sense and consideration. Training by the employer on the dangers of plastics on the natural envirnoment wouldn't go amiss, either. A big reason we have this global environmental problem in the first place is that certain corporations make freely giving out vast volumes of unnecessary plastics is part of their service model. This needs to stop. Someone proposing a contribution to the problem should be lauded, not questioned.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Airports near typhoon-hit Kansai airport to increase flights See in context

I guess it's still going to be a while til KIX gets back to normal.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Apple iPhones get bigger and pricier; Watch turns to health See in context

Apple have been selling phablets for years.

No it hasn't.

"Apple is going phablet with its next iPhone."

-- LA Times, Feb. 2018

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Posted in: Five important manners to remember when buying something at a Japanese convenience store See in context


Practice having your wallet or payment card in hand by the time you get to the front of the line.

I'm holding my purchase in one hand. I need two hands to remove my wallet and take out my bills and/or prepare the appropriate amount of coins from the ones in my pocket.

Practice telling the staff that you don’t need a bag, spoons etc as you set your basket or items on the counter.

Oh, I've tried that, alright. At that point, they are nearly always saying "irrashaimase" and a few other standard words, so I need to talk over and interrupt them, and then repeat the request. It's one of those hassle that's minor by itself but pretty annoying when encountered 1,000 times.

I've been thru this rigormorale...about a million times. I know what I'm talking about.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Posted in: Apple iPhones get bigger and pricier; Watch turns to health See in context

That's not a phone, it's a small tablet

Android has had "phablets" for years now. Apple is trying to catch up.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Five important manners to remember when buying something at a Japanese convenience store See in context

And manners for combini staff:

If I'm carrying a cloth bag or backpack, don't automatically whip out a plastic bag. Ask me first if I want one (I don't).

When whipping out said unsolicited plastic bag, don't do it during the split second my attention is distracted while fumbling for my coins or wallet. Give me the chance to refuse it.

Don't stuff my plastic bag with plastic spoons and plastic straws that I don't ask for nor need.

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

Posted in: The unilateral trade protectionism of the U.S. hurts a lot of nations. These countries need to enhance their cooperation, including cooperation between China and Japan, to ease the harm. See in context

If I'm not wrong, Japan also did the same thing post-WWII to revive its economy.

All the major economic powers have been havens of protectionism and mercantilism. That's how they became economic powers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Australian newspaper defies criticism, reprints Serena Williams cartoon See in context

What about a white male? I can't remember the last game penalty was handed out, can anyone?

Ah, yes, and you don't seem to know much about the professional tennis scene. Just a few items in the news:

*Fabio Fognini** has been kicked out of the US Open doubles and faces a possible permanent ban from all Grand Slam events, after vulgarly insulting the chair umpire during his first-round loss in singles.*

Nick Kyrgios' latest indiscretion has landed the controversial tennis player a $16,500 fine from the ATP.

Three days after winning the biggest title of his career in Japan, Kyrgios was back in trouble at the Shanghai Masters after losing his second-round match against 110th-ranked Mischa Zverev.

On Wednesday, the 21-year-old was booed as he imploded and exited in merely 48 minutes, losing 6-3 6-1.

The total fine includes the maximum $10,000 for a "lack of best efforts," as well as $5,000 for verbally abusing a spectator and $1,500 for unsportsmanlike conduct.

*Bernard Tomic **ranted against Tennis Australia, specifically Craig Tiley, Pat Rafter and Steve Healy. He was angry because of a lack of support, respect and funding for both him and his sister, Sara.*

As a result, Tennis Australia dropped him from the Davis Cup team for their quarter-final tie against Kazakhstan.

16 ( +18 / -2 )

Posted in: The unilateral trade protectionism of the U.S. hurts a lot of nations. These countries need to enhance their cooperation, including cooperation between China and Japan, to ease the harm. See in context

He says from China, the great communist-run mercantilist empire. How about taking down your own 25% tariffs on cars, instead of criticizing your trade partners for trying to do the same thing?

The "Made in China 2025" program will hurt a lot more nations, including the US, than Trump ever will.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan semiconductor company Renesas to buy U.S. firm IDT for $6.7 bil See in context

"(Renasas) suffered from fierce competition from low-cost rivals and in 2013 was bailed out by a government-backed fund.

Too bad the US doesn't have a government that's willing to step in and actively protect its strategic industrial assets, like Japan has. Rather, US semiconductor makers and other strategic industries are up for grabs for the Japanese and Chinese.

That's how "globalization" works: protected markets are free to take over unprotected ones, while the billionaires pocket the profits.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Australian newspaper defies criticism, reprints Serena Williams cartoon See in context

Knight's portrayal of Osaka as blond and light-skinned... 

Her complexion in the cartoon is about the same as Serena's. In real life, Naomi dyes the ponytail part of her hair -- which sticks out of her viser-hat -- blond. Baseless PC criticisms all around in this so-called "controversy."

21 ( +30 / -9 )

Posted in: WTA calls for equal treatment of players, on-court coaching See in context

Men's players like Jeff Tarango, Fabio Fogini, Nick Kygrios and others have racked up loads of violations and been booted out of tournaments and games. Violations and flare ups are certainly not unusual in pro tennis.

We do not believe that this was done last night,..

An umpire adhering to the official rules?! Oh, the scandal. If the rules are a problem, then change them. Like, introduce a clause allowing women and/or minorities to shout at umpires and hold up key matches whenever they feel slighted. .

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan revises April-June growth data up to 3% See in context

 Didn't see any growth in my wallet.

Then blame your employer. The govt and central bank set out to make the economy grow a few years back. That was accomplished solidly, with the longest expansion in 3 decades, even with a shrinking working-age population!

If you ain't getting your fair share of the bounty, then it's your employer's fault, not the gov'ts.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Posted in: Over 50% of people in Japan have considered living with or close to their parents, nearly double the share of parents who have had similar thoughts. See in context

I know a few foreign fellas who are forced live in some godforsaken part of Saitama or even Ibaraki because...that's where the in-laws live. LOL.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Over 60% of LDP members to support Abe staying as party leader: poll See in context


I will take any figures released by any J-gov't controlled organ with grain of salt.

Naturally, if the official stats routinely undermine your worldview, then the stats MUST be wrong.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Posted in: Trump tells Apple to make products in U.S. to avoid China tariffs See in context


So enlighten this forum why all those Western, Japanese and Korean firms still manufacture in China despite all the 'technology transfers' ?


Seriously, you don't know? Well, it's like this: Because if the corporations didn't hand over their technology and expertise to China’s state-owned corporations, the Communist government would kick them out, depriving them of access to a market of a billion consumers.


This systematic bribery is acknowledged by everyone, including Trump's harshest critics. But until Trump, no one wanted to do anything about it. The complacency and short-sighted greed of the globlist elite and their "stakeholders" are the populists’ biggest weapon.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Over 60% of LDP members to support Abe staying as party leader: poll See in context

As long as the economy keeps improving, his position will stay secure.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Posted in: Arguing, booing overshadow Osaka's U.S. Open final win over Williams See in context

Is Williams complaining that men are allowed to be more aggressive towards umpires? 

That's what her and many of the feminists are whining about. But it's B of S. Jeff Farango got disqualified from Wimbledon for rude and aggressive behavior on court, a penalty about 1,000 times worst than what she got.

> Was her coach telling Serena what to do (the signals)?

He seems to have admitted it. I saw a video, and it sure looked like it. He was rocking one way and then the other and mouthing something.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Gov't eyes tax breaks for car buyers to offset impact of sales tax hike See in context

This is so dumb. They should abolish kei-cars. They're a third of the entire market, and buyers and owners enjoy a range of financial privileges that no one else gets. Give all motorists the same "privileges" instead, ie, remove the artificial costs of owning a regular car.

Kei is a unique Japanese technical standard that Europe and others say is a barrier to market entry. Its discriminatory pure and simple.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan rejoices in having first grand slam champion See in context

Congratulations to HER, not her ethnicity, not her nationality

True, tennis is one of the world's most individualistic and cosmopolitan sports, if not THE most. A player's passport has nothing to do with their success. Although in Osaka's case, it should be pointed out her residency in America was key, since that is where she learned and developed her craft.

From Wiki:

"As Ōsaka has dual Japanese and American citizenship, her father made the decision to register her with the Japan Tennis Association when she began her career.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Cleaning up Tokyo's beaches: An Olympic task See in context

This year, beaches in Odaiba were opened for swimming for nine days as a trial,

Nice plan: using children and other members of the public as guinea pigs. A couple of years ago, Odaiba had a limited few days open to the public and told the children not to put their faces in the water.

I was swimming at Sentosa, in Singapore, this year, a very pleasant and clean place for such a big, dense city. experience. I wonder if Odaiba has or will have litter bins and regular trash collection as part of the clean campaign like Sentosa does.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: Gov't budget requests for FY2019 swell to record high See in context

Too many cops in Japan. I'm tired of reading how thousands - sometimes 10s of thousands of investigators - are assigned to a single case. Absurd. And Abe said last year "law enforcement" spending would be hiked. Let's put 100,000 cops on a single case, eh?

The guys in my local koban do nothing but sit in their chairs and occasionally stand up, I've noticed after 10 years of walking past them every day. They don't collar street smokers, punk bikers with clearly illegal exhaust pipes, cars running red lights, and a host of other law breakers, I've also noticed.

Think of the costs: lifetime employment, middle-class wage, generous pensions. That's $$$$$$ of state funds that could be shaved to $$.

Health care ain't free in Japan, nor is pension. We pay our own contributions, which are steep. Yet they take up huge parts of the budget. We're getting the worst of both worlds. But that's OK, corporations - now wealthier than in any time in history - recently got a tax cut

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Posted in: When the rapid-growth period was over, and Japan’s traditional life-long employment system ended, the government failed to gain consensus from taxpayers to shift the burden of this safety network from families to society. See in context

Corporations in all the neo-lib economies are using more and more of their income on buybacks, cash hoarding, executive pay and dividends, and less and less on workers' wages.

So, expect larger fiscal debt in these countries, higher taxes (for individuals), and workers needing support like food stamps even though they work 40 hours a week for large, extremely wealthy corporations. That's largely what the 3Rd Arrow of "Reform" is about.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump says good relations with Japan 'will end when I tell them how much they have to pay:' WSJ See in context


"....the US....which basically only produces things to export that people don't want and therefore don't often buy, a lot."

Like Boeing 787s.

Both the Japanese and Chinese should appreciate Trump's sentiment. Both those countries are loathe to run trade deficits, and indeed their highly successfully industrial development strategies involved running up huge surpluses against their major trading partners, aka, "adversaries."

"Business is war," a Japanese official once said in the 70s, summing up his country's trade strategy.

2 ( +10 / -8 )

Posted in: Kansai airport resumes domestic flights after typhoon See in context

The i in Kix stands for "international." Itami and Kobe are the region's domestic facilities. It does seem odd they don't transfer the few domestic KIX flights to those airports so KIX can concentrate on the international flights, in which the industry and passengers have much more invested.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Former Morning Musume singer arrested over hit-and-run incident See in context

Phoning the police 15 minutes later and voluntarily returning to the scene? I'm not sure if that qualifies as "hit and run." In central Tokyo traffic, you often need to go around a couple of blocks to find somewhere you can stop without causing a jam.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

Posted in: Domestic flights at Kansai airport to resume Friday after typhoon damage See in context

The government says domestic service at Kansai International Airport will resume on Friday

"Domestic"? Isn't the overwhelming amount of the region's domestic capacity handled by Itami, plus Kobe Airport, while KIX does the international?

It would make more sense to transfer any of KIX's domestic capacity to the domestic airports for now and focus on getting the international flights off the ground.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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