kohakuebisu comments

Posted in: Uniqlo’s new 'communist dictator' jacket has Japanese commenters confused and snickering See in context

I just hope no stylist of a Korean boy band sees it and decides to get them doing dance routines in front of a red flag. We'll never hear the end of it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: In making fact-based films, how much liberty is it OK to take in the name of entertainment? See in context

It depends on how important the facts are. If its a Freddie Mercury biopic, it doesn't matter. If its a historical film, it should not sanitize or mislead, although many films do exactly this.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Court orders ex-classmates to pay ¥38.5 mil for bullying-induced suicide in Shiga See in context

If Japanese schools are going to have "morality" classes, this case should be lesson number one. Should put the wind up those who think they can bully others.

I like Disillusioned's idea about public service, but in Japan, grass cutting and litter collection are "youji" (a Japanese euphemism for volunteering) that local people get coerced into through neighborhood associations. You are not supposed to regard such tasks as "punishments".

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Posted in: Brexit accelerating Japanese exodus from UK: analysts See in context

Relocating production for something as complex as cars is very complex and expensive. It is not something you "just" do. Companies will need a lot of motivation, and Brexit is helping provide it. It sounds like the Honda plant was not exactly thriving, but would have stuck around without idiot politicians in the UK plunging the country into chaos. That this is all originally motivated by a shouty wing of the Conservative party is truly tragic.

Btw, a Honda spokesman said that that plant makes 94% petrol cars, so diesel regs are hardly a factor. The beneficiary of diesel regs should be hybrid manufacturers, like err, Honda. Cars in the UK are taxed by CO2 and company fleets will choose fuel efficient models.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan to revise child custody rules to enforce handovers See in context

I hope this is what it says it is, especially for parents who have been awarded custody overseas but then had their children abducted to Japan. The victims of this deserve much better than lip service.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: Honda to close UK car plant in 2022 with loss of 3,500 jobs See in context

Aren't Honda the second biggest hybrid manufacturer after Toyota? I doubt diesels are such a factor for them. If diesels are to be banned, hybrids are best placed to gain sales.

That leaves the risk of hard Brexit and the Japan-EU agreement as the main factors. From the outside, it is hard to know anything with certainty. However, Japanese business leaders have always said they saw the UK as part of Europe, even to an extent that appears like meddling. At least part of this move looks Brexit-driven.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Companies need to instill flexibility in career paths, eliminating the gap between regular and irregular positions. Workers need to be judged and rewarded based on output rather than face time. See in context

Japan should scrap benefits for housewives (haigushu fuyou) and the seishain system.

Haigusha fuyou encourages married women to not work, or at least not earn over a low set limit.

Seishain encourages people to not switch jobs. To just stick with what they have. Companies are forced to keep on employing them regardless of how unproductive they may be.

Both these systems reward mediocre people. Note that if you want to support families you do that by helping parents and guardians, not childless housewives.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: 9-year-old girl in critical condition after falling from 2nd floor of house See in context

My eldest daughter, who's 13, sleeps in a bed under a window. Outside, there is a verandah roof immediately below the window, but that gradually slopes down, ultimately to a drop of 3m or so to the ground. We have two younger children, 10 and 6, so I suppose the same thing could happen to us or another child visiting us. My older two don't play in that room, big sis doesn't let them, but I'll have to have a word with them. fwiw, the bed was moved to under the window when my eldest started JHS.

I slept in a bed under a window myself when I was a kid in the UK, but the window did not open far enough for this to be a danger. Perhaps that is the real source of danger in Japan and all of these incidents, inappropriate use of horizontally sliding windows that open too far and children can fall out of. Having built a house, I know that window units are very expensive here and that horizontally sliding ones are by far the cheapest.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Olympic volunteers: One-time chance, or exploitation? See in context

Olympics volunteers DO NOT GET PAID!!! NOWHERE.

That's correct, but lots of wrongs don't make a right.

As the chimpanzee lady shows, there are such things as volunteers who are paid. The word does not automatically mean "works for free".

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Cabinet OKs limiting health insurance coverage to Japan residents See in context

Is this a real problem? No statistics shown regarding number of fraud allegations or investigations. 

For dependents to receive healthcare, the foreign workers would have to be on shakai hoken, which means they would have to be seishain on permanent contracts (no!) or keiyaku shain on yearly etc. contracts (unlikely). Ordinary insurance, kokumin kenko hoken, used by temporary and part time workers does not cover any dependents.

I cannot foresee many people employing guest workers as keiyaku shain, making this a non-problem. It is certainly not a headline problem, and turning it into one encourages ordinary Japanese to view guest workers with fear and suspicion. It also encourages ordinary Japanese to think that foreign workers must be on shakai hoken, i.e., they must be being employed in well paying, stable jobs. This is also very unlikely. Millions of Japanese themselves do not receive shakai hoken because their employers skirt around paying it.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: What do you think of the quality of food sold in convenience stores in Japan? Has it improved since you first came to Japan? See in context

Definitely getting better. Obviously lots of waste, and packaged bentos have lots of plastic, which some people simply throw out of their car windows for inaka locals to pick up :(

If you are out exploring inaka by car or on two wheels, convenience stores mean you are never that far from half-decent food. I wouldn't use them for day-to-day sustenance, but for this purpose, they are very good, especially for cycling where you don't want to carry anything.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: It's not something Japanese people can ignore as someone else's problem. See in context

Microbeads in cosmetics etc. are not banned in Japan, are they?

There is the further issue of microfibers, which leech out of washing machines every time synthetic clothing is washed. The fibers cannot be filtered out at water processing plants. Fleece clothing and blankets, both ubiquitous in Japan, are especially bad for microfibers.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Dysfunctional economic planning dooms Okinawa to vicious circle of poverty See in context

The climate, environment, and culture of Okinawa would attract many if they could work remotely. Unfortunately only a tiny percentage of Japanese are free to do that.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Osaka splits with coach Bajin See in context

This could be good, could be bad. We'll have to wait and see

Judging from her current form and rate of progress under Bajin, it certainly goes against the mantra of "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Mother, 2 children found dead in submerged car at Okayama port See in context

Japan needs to dedicate more resources toward mental health. The existence of suicidal parents who take their children with them only underlines the need for this.

There is a definite cultural aspect to shinju-type suicide pacts, and it should be confronted.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Dysfunctional economic planning dooms Okinawa to vicious circle of poverty See in context

Tourism is a very low paying sector.

We used to go to Okinawa in the offseason, but we would stay in big hotels with great rooms and big resort hotel breakfasts for the same price as a tired-looking pension with tiny rooms and a rubbish breakfast somewhere near a ski resort on Honshu on a weekday. On a weekend, the pension would be more expensive. My impression of accommodation in Okinawa is that it is cheap for what you get.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Shimizu begins construction of 1.9MW biomass power plant in Nagano See in context

This will have massive subsidies. I wouldn't be surprised if it is eternally nonviable without them. I'm all for eco tech, but only good eco tech. A solar panel will produce electricity without trucking in loads of woodchips and producing PM, from the trucks and the burning wood, and without needing somone, ultimately the ordinary consumer, to pay 40 yen a KWh for the power.

I hope they are using the waste heat too.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Mother, two daughters, aged 6, 4, found dead in car in apparent murder-suicide See in context

I can understand and forgive suicide, depression is not something where you apply standard logic, but I cannot forgive murder.

Thousands of parents with young children die every year due to accidents and illness. Their children live on. Like other children, sometimes they thrive, sometimes they don't, but they all get a chance. That was denied the two victims here. RIP.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese city to use AI to predict seriousness of school bullying See in context

This might be a good idea if it were done by experts, but it's likely to be just some off the shelf solution that is being sold to bureaucrats who only want to be seen to be doing something.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Man arrested for fracturing 8-year-old stepdaughter’s collarbone by hurling her across room See in context

Bravo to the school for notifying the authorities and having this investigated further. I bet some wouldn't.

As with the fellow who abandoned his kid on the mountain, I don't know what the punishment should be, but this is a good chance to send a clear message that this kind of parenting is not remotely acceptable any more. It might have been during grandpa's day or whatever, but it is not now.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: U.N. rights committee urges Japan to let children be children See in context

I think there is a danger here of confusing different issues that are not related. The Yua Funato case is not automatically related to Japanese schools, she was not even school age, and was a failure of social care. The state had clear evidence but did not move in to protect the child. Children get abused for many reasons, mental and marriage problems for their parents included. You could have the most wonderful loving society but children will still get abused due to dysfunction in individual families. Japanese society did not abuse Yua Funato, her parents did. Japanese society erred in completely failing to protect her from them.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Posted in: Deer-related injuries in Nara reach record number already this year See in context

That's a sharp increase in attacks.

I wonder what the trigger is. They are not attacking foreign tourists in big numbers, so that rules out the most obvious suspect. At most places, domestic tourism is down every year with the shrinking/aging population. So I wonder what has started this off now. Could it be a handful of Alpha deer doing the attacks?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: 2 Lawson franchise stores found to have falsified food expiration times See in context

Do branches of Lawsons have a kitchen and prepare bentos "in the store"? Near me, the bentos are just delivered by truck from the producer. For stuff that is delivered, I would have thought the typical control freakery by the chain would mean labeling at the factory and no relabeling on site. I associate "food prepared in the store" with deep fried stuff, nikuman, and oden.

Regarding bread, it will not go mouldy if it dries out first. Those experiments with non decaying McDonalds burgers do not prove anything, because if they dry out, there is no moisture for mould to live on. "Artisan" bread that dries out won't go mouldy either.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Liam Neeson denies racism after hunting black men to attack after friend was raped See in context

If someone close you to is attacked by a person of a specific race or ethnicity, it's quite natural to want revenge against one of them.

Why is it "quite natural" to frame people or divide them up by what they look like?

It can only be natural if we have a racist world in which people are being raised to have racist feelings, whether they want them or not. I'm white like Liam Neeson, but I am with anyone who finds this story abhorrent.

The person who raped Liam Neeson's friend, assuming there is any glimmer of truth in this story, was a man. Why didn't he just attack a man, e.g. himself?

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Posted in: Former part-time teacher arrested for paying high school girl for sex See in context

Lifetime ban from teaching, name in nationwide sex offenders' register, banned from changing his name.

That's what should happen.

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

Posted in: Tokyo accessory maker turns Japan’s prefectures into pieces of art to wear around your neck See in context

I bet they sell some to regional politicians who will buy them to go with their label badges of the prefectures' mascot. It's much easier to don trinkets than come up with good ideas or actually do something to help the provinces.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Aso retracts remark about people who don't have children See in context

in a seminar held in his constituency in the southwestern prefecture of Fukuoka.

Let's face it, he's there in front of a room of supporters, mostly old people, and he's told them their pensions are meagre or they have to pay more for healthcare, or something like that because selfish women wouldn't have kids. Given the audience, it'll probably go down well.

Last year, he's somewhere else and people are asking about childcare or something, so he says, you know, there's no money because of them old people blocking up beds in hospitals and costing the health service a fortune. I wish they'd all just die.

If anyone there has a brain in gear, he just says, oh I'm sorry if you misunderstood me. I find it amazing that Japanese do not use the expression "passive aggressive" because they love to use such tactics. They have expressions for the different techniques, here maybe "higai mousou" (victimization), but no "passive aggressive" type collective noun for them all.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: UK offered Nissan Brexit assurances, 80 mil pounds for car investment See in context

The original decision, which would have created 740 new jobs, 

The reports the other day said "no jobs will be lost", but by my reckoning, this is 740 jobs lost. Cancelling new jobs, losing existing jobs (that plant has many on short-term contracts with no redundancy payments who are the first to go), it's all the same.

I bet the few Japanese staff there live in Durham or Newcastle, not in Pennywell.

Nissan being in Sunderland was a triumph for Margaret Thatcher. Her guru, Keith Joseph, openly said it happened due to Single Market access. A lot of Tories hold Thatcher in high esteem, but she would never have rejected free trade as is happening now. Thatcher was not a "we can do it on our own, Rule Brittania" Tory. A No Deal Brexit is an affront to her memory.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Patriots out-muscle Rams 13-3 in lowest scoring Super Bowl ever See in context

I thought it was dull.

When it did spring to life, it was ended by the Rams dropping a touchdown pass and then Goff launching an awful throw into single coverage for the pick on the very next play. The play selection was fine, he simply didn't execute. He throws it to the outside and the receiver is in position to score. Games that come down to a drop and then a botched throw are not a defensive masterclass.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Women living poverty face bleak future See in context

Women in the middle class face onerous burdens, too:

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/02/world/asia/japan-working-mothers.html

That's an interesting article. It blames men for not doing household chores like in the West, which it then lists as:

Taking and recording a child's temperature, according to day care rules.

Making elaborate bentos in the shape of cartoon characters.

Writing detailed dairies, according to day care rules.

Doing a craft project on a weekend as homework from daycare.

I'm sorry but men in other countries do not do those things. They may cook, clean, wash dishes, etc., things that are productive and support the family, but they do not do pointless tasks that merely fill in a Japanese housewife's day. You cannot blame Japanese men, especially those who come home at 10pm, for not doing them. These tasks only exist or remain because Japanese women tacitly consent to them. No Japanese man is out there insisting that daycares operate with archaic and time consuming rules. Western women would have got rid of them years ago.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

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