katsu78 comments

Posted in: Trump pushes Democrats on border wall as government shutdown looms See in context

...aaand Trump just caved on his wall.


Because even he isn't so stupid as to not see how inept a government shutdown on his 100th day in office would make him look. But let's not forget the only way he spares himself this ignominy is by giving up on his most central campaign promise.

He's almost 100 days in and he literally hasn't accomplished a single thing he promised to do, but he sure has managed to enrich himself and his family at the tax-payers' expense!

Rating: 4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Rakuten enters English education business See in context

English learning app “Maname”

Maname is an app which users can learn English vocabulary studied from elementary school to high school. It incorporates a variety of questions on English translation, Japanese translation, intonation, and spelling, and is designed to keep learning fun through gamification.

Because nothing says language learning like memorizing vocabulary in isolation, sentence translation, spelling tests, or naming the app in the L1!

Rating: 1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Venture firm develops device to prevent kids' smartphone addiction See in context

So, first we've got the dubious myth that "smartphone addiction" among children is truly widespread. Let's not look at why kids like to use smartphones, let's just declare that them using them a lot must be an addiction and not try to think too hard about it.

Then we have a mechanical, commercial solution - rather than parents learning what their kids are doing and monitor their behavior and teach their children appropriate contexts for morally complex behavior, we have effectively a remote on/off switch. Parents who don't like to think hard about their world can now force their children to also not think very hard about their world!

Rating: 0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump pressures Democrats on Obamacare to get border wall deal See in context

If talks fail, the government would shut down on Saturday, Trump's 100th day in office.

Oh wow, and won't the Democrats be so embarassed if that happens. /obv sarc

Trump is reaping what he's sown. Refuse to bargain in good faith, and people will stop bargaining with you.

Rating: 8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: Protective clothing no longer needed to walk near Fukushima plant See in context

zichi Apr. 23  10:23 pm JST

That is the place mentioned in the post. 

And your evidence for this claim is...?

You do realize that I am saying the radiation level mentioned in the post must be lower than that? 

I do, but you're doing a rather poor job of making your case for it. Instead of laying out your arguments in a rational way, you threw out some claims without any real evidence directly connected to it and then every time someone questions you on them you toss out personal attacks about how little they understand or how little they listen to you. It makes you seem like what you want is a fight.

Rating: 0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Protective clothing no longer needed to walk near Fukushima plant See in context

zichi Today  07:22 pm JST

You don't understand that there is not an actual hill in the plant or even in the area of the plant and I provided you with a link to a photo to show you that, but you didn't look at it.

Your photo is not really all that useful so long as we don't know precisely which location is "the hill" from the article that visitors are permitted to be at.

So yes, the level of radiation within every area of the damaged plant needs to be known.

You say that as though anyone in this thread has argued otherwise. No one has.

 I am saying that the 150 microsieverts per hour stated in the article is probably a mistake and probably too high. If its correct then workers in that area would be exposed to about 450 millisieverts in one working year. Normal hours + overwork = 3,000 x 150 microsieverts per hour would expose them to 450 millisieverts.

If their work involves standing in that exact spot for 3000 hours a year, that would be alarming. Nothing in this article suggests however that it is the job of any plant worker to do nothing but stand on a hill in a mask and a helmet all year. Even with as ludicrously comic-book evil as people like to portray TEPCO, I think we all agree it's likely that they don't hire people to do nothing more than stand around and expose themselves (to radiation).

Nor does anything in this article suggest that that particular spot on the hill represents the general radioactive level at the plant overall.

I expect they’ll just use a different name?

If you have evidence this is happening by all means share it, but I think you'll agree that nuclear safety is an issue serious enough that no one should just make up information about it because it "feels right".

Rating: 2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Protective clothing no longer needed to walk near Fukushima plant See in context

zichi Today  12:29 pm JST

the original post shown above and elsewhere states the level is 150 microsieverts per hour which converts to 1314.87192 millisieverts per year.

Given that no one is proposing anyone stay on that hill for a year, I don't see what point there is in converting units other than to make the numbers seem higher.

What matters with radiation is exposure. For example, a chest x-ray is about 20 μsv, but it lasts about a second. If we converted that exposure to a year-long duration, no doubt it would seem terrifying, but it would also be meaningless because no one is going to sit in front of an x-ray generator for a year.

They're saying that place has a radiation level of 150 μsv per hour, but are also saying people shouldn't stay there for longer than 10 minutes. So for people who go to the hill following directions, their exposure is only going to be 1/6 of 150 μsv, or 25 μsv - about the same exposure of that chest x-ray.

Rating: 1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Protective clothing no longer needed to walk near Fukushima plant See in context

zichi Today  11:22 am JST

Guess someone didn't proof read the post. Guy's 150 micro sieverts per hour is a gross error because 0.150 would be too high? 

Where is the error? .150μsv is about the radioactive exposure of eating a banana or living within 50 miles of a coal-burning power plant. It would be wonderful if the hill's exposure was that low, but I think that's unrealistic to expect of a nuclear power plant disaster and on the scales of exposure we're talking about, even 150μsv is not horrible. If you spend two years living in a stone, brick, or concrete building, you are getting about the same exposure. If you fly back to the US and back over spring break, you're getting double the exposure.

There are still too many areas with hotspots up to 10 microsieverts per hour.

That's about the average background radiation a person typically gets in a single day. So while a hot spot 24x the normal background radiation is definitely not a good thing, it's hardly a serious health risk.


The radiation level near the reactors is 1 sievert per hour, higher inside the buildings and even higher inside the reactors themselves.

Which is probably why no one is recommending you hold your cherry blossom viewing party inside the reactor. Though I be some Cherenkov glow would make a fantastic contrast to sakura pink.

> thepersoniamnow Today  07:04 am JST

So essentially they are saying that they have built a combini nearby, and everything now appears normal.

No, they're not saying that and the article spells out explicitly several ways that "everything" is definitely not normal. Let's not misrepresent a report of progress as a report of the job being finished just because you dislike the nuclear industry.

Rating: -3 ( +2 / -5 )

Posted in: Anger, confusion as Japan revives militaristic edict See in context

The one positive note in this story is how mainstream Japan finds this edict an irrelevant step backward, which is a good sign that it will not be mandated any time soon without much more dramatic cultural shifts that I don't see any reason to predict are coming.

So you need to ask yourself why the mainstream Japanese public are so blazé toward their own emperor. I think the best argument is that it was because the US allowed the Chrysanthemum Throne to continue. Japan has had 72 years since the war with an emperor on the throne and... not a lot has come of it. Life moved on. The emperor hasn't been able to use is magical emperor powers to remove a generation of economic stagnation or stop people from working themselves to death or prevent terrorist attacks by Japanese fanatics against other Japanese people. Though Abe is in power, his far-right movement is culturally fringe and his ability to stay in power largely requires him to conceal his fringe ideas.

Had the emperor been removed, then the rightists would have been able to blame every crisis in Japanese society on his absence. People wouldn't have had the chance to see for themselves that modern societies don't need royalty. A far-right resurgence would be much more likely under such a scenario than the one we see now.

Y'all need to remember that sometimes, the best way to get what you want isn't use force to demand it. Think long term, think of your goals, think beyond that impulse coming from the lizard part of your brain that wants to dominate others for the sake of dominating others.

Rating: 3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Trump takes aim at U.S. financial oversight law See in context

The looting of the US continues.

Rating: 3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Policeman killed, two wounded in Paris shooting; IS claims responsibility See in context

Jimizo Today  06:12 pm JST

I think if this was an isolated incident of a murderous religious crackpot, you'd get the kind of reaction you seem to think it deserves.

An "isolated" "religious" "crackpot". Interesting way of putting it. Exactly what factor makes this incident not "isolated"? Both Islamophobes and ISIS would like the world to think that the common causative factor is that this attacker and the other terrorists you're no doubt referring to were Muslims, but the billions of non-violent Muslims in the world proves that hypothesis to be false.

Rating: 0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: O'Reilly out at Fox News Channel; still denies allegations See in context

bass4funk Today  04:26 pm JST

How is he a racist, you didn't give me any examples?

I realize JT's quoting system is ridiculously screwed up, but that's no excuse to not even bother to read the post you reply to. You know the one where I wrote examples like these:

No. When Bill claims that a person looks like a drug dealer for no reason other than that they are a black man in a suit, that is objectively racist. When he expresses amazement that a "black" restaurant operates just like any other restaurant, that's objectively racist. When he asks if "reaching out" to the black community involves appearing on Soul Train, that's not just objectively racist, but staggeringly out of touch with current pop culture.

Rating: 2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Policeman killed, two wounded in Paris shooting; IS claims responsibility See in context

The only societies that have ever existed without multiculturalism were isolated hill settlements that died out before outsiders made contact with them. Face it: people move. People make babies in places they move to. It's a fact of life. Accept it. Move on.

All sympathies to the loved ones of this police officer who are dealing with their irreplaceable loss, naturally. But from a macro-societal point of view, do you really think a single police shooting is really the sort of thing to throw away the spirit of the French enlightenment over? No doubt a cop killing is a bigger deal in France than in the US because of the lack of a gun culture there, but still, it surely happens, and when it happens as a result of a drug bust gone wrong or a car chase do French people typically respond with any more outrage than a Gallic shrug? Why then is a single casualty by a brown dude named Abdul* so terribly shocking?

Rating: 2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: What do you think of the new Japan Today design? See in context

Quotes in previews don't match how quotes work in the final post. Did you even test this before you rolled it out?

Also, you took away our ability to thumb up/down mod comments, which as far as I'm concerned was the only improvement of the site to come out of this whole fiasco.

Rating: 0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: O'Reilly out at Fox News Channel; still denies allegations See in context

bass4funk Today 04:42 am JST Does that analogy apply only to White people?

It's not an analogy, and I never said it only applied to white people, so your asking the question appears to be an attempt at distraction.

How? I think you want to see something that is not there or as in most cases these days claim there is something when in actuality there is nothing.

No. When Bill claims that a person looks like a drug dealer for no reason other than that they are a black man in a suit, that is objectively racist. When he expresses amazement that a "black" restaurant operates just like any other restaurant, that's objectively racist. When he asks if "reaching out" to the black community involves appearing on Soul Train, that's not just objectively racist, but staggeringly out of touch with current pop culture.

He worked closely with Al Sharpton before he turned out to be a charlatan. He helped Juan William's get a job on FNC after he was unjustly fired from NPR. Personally, I have never knew of a racist that would help Blacks like this,

Ah, the old "I have a black friend, so nothing I ever did can be racist" defense.

This is why we need to get away from the notion of racist as a person's core identity and focus on the quality of individual actions themselves. Otherwise, we're left with people like you trying to pretend that one or two actions that are positive toward individual black people (and which also benefit the person doing them) outweigh a lifetime of hateful racist actions toward the entire black community.

Your attempt to pretend O'Reilly's racist behavior (which we have video evidence for) isn't racism is a defense of racism. Your attempt to portray O'Reilly's friendly behavior toward two black individuals as a counter to the repeated racist actions against blacks in general we saw on this video is a defense of racism. And to defend racism is to engage in racism. Just something you should (but probably won't) think about.

Rating: 1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: O'Reilly out at Fox News Channel; still denies allegations See in context

bass4funk Today 06:04 pm JST Prove that he's a racist,

Most people need to get away from this notion of racism being a core identity as opposed to an action people choose to take because it allows them to repeatedly perform racist actions and support racists systems and justify themselves by saying, "I can't be racist because I'm a good person!"


But about 5:00 - 6:00 presents a pretty convincing set of O'Reilly moments proving pretty clearly that he repeatedly engages in racism and has no problem fanning hatred and using racist stereotypes to hurt people they don't even apply to. He might not have a klan-like burning hatred of black people like we see in many members of the alt-right, but he has absolutely no problem using the most hateful stereotypes of black people to put innocent people he talks with at a disadvantage. Which pretty much amounts to the same thing, just with added cynicism.

Rating: 4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Putin-linked think tank drew up plan to sway 2016 U.S. election: documents See in context

CrazyJoe Today 02:52 pm JST If you might wish to meet the undisputed masters in foreign election meddling, plan a visit to the US CIA.

I wonder in what way you think that comment is relevant. Do you mean it as suggesting that Russia's undermining of democracy is justified because at one point the CIA also did it? Or are you trying to say that Russia's undermining of democracy doesn' matter because at one point the CIA did it? Or are you simply trying to change the subject and hope everyone will forget about Russia undermining democracy?

Serrano Today 03:13 pm JST Crazy... How come the undisputed masters in election meddling couldn't get Hillary elected?

Probably something to do with the fact that the specific people in the CIA who conducted past anti-democratic operations aren't necessarily working in the CIA now, also the fact that the CIA having conducted past anti-democratic operations doesn't mean that the CIA is presently involved in operations in every existing democracy.

Rating: 3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Putin-linked think tank drew up plan to sway 2016 U.S. election: documents See in context

5SpeedRacer5 Today 10:10 am JST Is it blaming the victim to say that if the US voters fell for this, then Russia is not the real problem here?

Yes. Yes it is. It is also the exact justification that paid Russian dezinformatsiya bloggers have used in on-camera interviews to justify their efforts to undermine democracy.

Because really, if you substitute Democrat or Republican or Big Oil or Big Coal or NRA for the word PUTIN in the headline above, it would be just as true and draw zero outrage.

Democrats, Republicans, Big Oil, Big Coal, and the NRA don't have nuclear weapons. They don't fly bombers in to test US borders. However selfish some of them may be or how destructive some of them may be, they've never fought a proxy war against the American people.

But go on, maybe you have some other reasons to say it's fine when a nation with concentration camps to torture and purge its sexual minorities should undermine the democracy of its sovereign rival.

Rating: 5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: O'Reilly out at Fox News Channel; still denies allegations See in context

Fox could have broken the story, but it isn't really a news organization. It is just a right-wing opinion factory and truth distortion machine.


O'Reilly rates 67% of evaluated statements being "Half True", "Mostly False", "False", or "Pants on Fire." Only 34% rate as "True" or "Mostly True". Any organization that supports him can't honestly call itself "news".

But the fact remains that both O'Reilly's deceitfulness and his penchant for sexual harassment have been documented for years, even by real news organizations. It was the public demanding advertisers not pay for his BS that finally brought him down.

Rating: 6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: O'Reilly out at Fox News Channel; still denies allegations See in context

There have been abuse allegations against O'Reilly for what, over a decade? What made them suddenly matter now?

When advertisers started pulling their ads.

Rating: 5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Aviation poised for 'third revolution': Airbus boss See in context

Will the ones marketed in the US come with special passenger-beating accessories?

Rating: 0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Death by overwork: Japan's 100-hour overtime cap sparks anger See in context

Workaholic Japan has unveiled its first-ever plan to limit overtime, ...Overtime is viewed as a sign of dedication at many firms, even if Japanese workers' productivity lags behind that of their US and European counterparts. New rule: Whenever this topic comes up in the news, we need to stop talking about "workaholic Japan" and start talking about "ineptly inefficient Japan". Because if this country isn't going to respect its workers enough to give them time to recouperate, there is no reason for the rest of us to respect the abysmal GDP/hour worked the country generates.

Rating: 1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: 'Star Wars' embraces girl power with new heroine stories, toys See in context

What? Star Wars is doubling down on its girl fanbase? Unbelievable. Didn't they notice all those angry protests they got over TFA and R1? Why they must have lost tens of dollars of revenue. /obv sarc

Rating: 0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Trump hits back at tax protests, asks 'who paid' for rallies See in context

Ah, the latest alt-right trolling meme, adopted by the President. Don't like what protesters think? Just declare without a shred of evidence they were paid!

Rating: 0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: In Japan’s corporate culture, hard workers who have a strong sense of responsibility are left to bear the burden. Overwork problems can’t be solved at the individual level. See in context

It's true. If we want this problem solved Japanese managers will have to quit sucking through their teeth and get off their asses and manage.

Rating: 2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Minister calls curators of cultural properties 'cancer' that need to be eradicated See in context

One of the consistent problems we're seeing come out of the Japanese government lately is that politicians say things that aren't necessarily wrong, but completely ineptly phrased with needless aggression. You would think these were punk kids on 2chan, not supposedly dignified representatives of state.

Kozo Yamamoto made the remark Sunday at a seminar in Otsu in western Japan's Shiga Prefecture, arguing that Japan's cultural properties are not being presented in ways that tourists from overseas can easily understand.

This is totally true. And if you can't express this without calling the people who don't know how to market what they love to people with a totally different culture as "cancer", maybe you ought to keep your mouth shut.

Rating: 0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: What do you think of the new Japan Today design? See in context

HollisBrown Apr. 17 10:44 pm JST All in all I'd give it a 3/10 - on the presumption that someone who isn't a web designer has 'had a go' and played around with some default settings.

Well said! If Trump is an idiot's idea of a smart man, then this site looks like a complete design amateur's idea of a modern website design. Someone's pet project they're hoping will get them a foot in the door to doing real work.

Rating: 1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: What do you think of the new Japan Today design? See in context

It's a superficial redesign to a site that has deep flaws regarding its content, management, and customer service.

And on the style side it's odd just how many different fonts you try to cram onto a single page. Instead of looking visually cohesive or encouraging me to navigate and explore, it's like there are 6 different sections on the page competing for my visual attention all at the same time. And at least two of them are ads.

Rating: 8 ( +9 / -1 )

Posted in: Cutting Trump slack: Voters forgive reversals -- to a point See in context

Trump's problem is that Democratic voters tend to be more forgiving of changes in policy as new information comes in - and he's alienating them in every possible way he can. It's Republicans who tend to decry "flip-flops" because the conservative mindset in the US is all about putting forward an image of moral clarity. If you have to change your position because you learned new things, that means the world is complicated and resists simplistic notions like, "Mexicans are thieves and rapists, Muslims are terrorists, global warming was invented by the Chinese, and blacks are lawless", notions spread by Trump's own election campaign rhetoric.

So in reality Trump can't be forgiven. His whole animus is a rejection of the kind of contemplation of complicated ideas that leads to, in his perception, "weak" politicians like Obama. His only hope to survive his own incompetence is to cultivate blind loyalty in his followers, a reactive double-think where it doesn't matter what Trump said yesterday or what he will say tomorrow, only what he is saying right at this moment is always truth.

Naturally, such a thing might be good for Trump. It wouldn't be so good for the rest of us.

Rating: 1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Ethics textbook change causes widespread constroversy See in context

The sad thing about all of this is that it's all so superficial. If showing "respect for tradition and culture" can be fulfilled just by swapping a bread shop out for a wagashi shop, what it shows is that the tradition and culture being respected are paper-thin and superficial.

This is further clouded by Kyodo's choice to call a dotoku textbook an "ethics" textbook rather than what it really is, a "moral education" textbook. Ethics is the thoughtful decision-making process people go through to maximize the good to come out of difficult, non-obvious choices. Morals are the gut-feeling reactions of a person trying to maximize the feeling of good that comes out of their value system. Swapping out a "foreign" store for a "domestic" one to foster "respect for tradition and culture" smacks far more of a moral gut reaction than a thought-out ethical decision.

Rating: 5 ( +8 / -3 )

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