What is the obsession with getting back to what things were like in 2019?
This was supposedly to prevent the spread of a virus, wasn't it? So if that problem is basically under control, what is with the obsession of wanting to keep restrictions?
It seems to me that people like yourself weren't pushing for this restrictions not because of the virus, but because of your personal world view that wants less tourism, and it was a convenient excuse.
Ever spoken to residents of Kyoto - or any tourist area in Japan - about the impact of uncontrolled tourist growth?
I know people who had to declare bankruptcy in their business because of their business depending on tourists to subsist.
4 ( +9 / -5 )
How? I thought Japan was closed?
Most of those numbers are just reentries. The rest are diplomats, and special permissions approved by the Ministry of Justice, mostly under humanitarian grounds.
11 ( +19 / -8 )
With the success that the Tokyo games were, the Sapporo games could be almost as good! (Sarcasm
-2 ( +2 / -4 )
Wow, the Japanese government admitted something that the WHO said back in 2020!
Soon they will say that using double mask while in your car alone should only be done if the windows are open and there are other cars with open windows near.
23 ( +33 / -10 )
Still only 20% of what the average number of daily foreign visitors there were in December 2019, and they have not really opened borders as they said they would, just allowing next month for North Korea style heavily surveilled government sponsored tours.
-6 ( +20 / -26 )
As this is supposedly a Japanese first paper, I'm going to talk the situation of medication for ADHD in Japan.
Ritalin is banned for the treatment of ADHD in Japan, and it is only allowed under a very restrictive license (almost no medical practitioner can actually prescribe it) to treat narcolepsy.
This is because an scandal that happened back in the 2007s about a 25 year old man that was using Ritalin and committed suicide. The media tried to link his suicide to the use of Ritalin, since apparently the hospital he was attending to was prescribing way more than necessary doses of Ritalin to him.
After this, and in typical Japanese Government manner, the Japanese government overreacted to this scandal by first, voiding the medical license of the hospital that did this, and then by basically making it imposible for medical practitioners to prescribe Ritalin.
Since Ritalin was the only available medication approved in Japan to treat ADHD, basically people with ADHD were left without any medication to treat ADHD for 6 years, until in 2013 Concerta was approved for use in ADHD.
Now, ADHD patients have to also go through extra hops and bureaucratic bs just to get Concerta.
First, their doctor has to be registered in the ADHD register system (yes, there is such a thing), and they need to take some government approver e-seminars in order to get registered in the system, and be able to prescribe Concerta.
But it doesn't end there, patients also have to be registered in the system (in other words, there is actually a national database right now which have all of the data of ADHD patients around the country), and starting 2020 with a new system, patients with ADHD are given basically an ADHD ID card, that they have to bring to his doctor every single time they need to get their prescription of Concerta.
One of the main symptoms of ADHD is Inattention, which means, ADHD patients are actually pretty prompt to forget to bring this card with them, which means that since 2020, it has become pretty common that ADHD patients have to wait extra days to get their prescription.
Not only that, ADHD patients can only get 2 weeks worth of Concerta, and the doses they can get are actually pretty low compared to international standards.
Also, if for some reason the patients lose their pills (for example, once again, because of their inattention they throw the pills to the garbage), which isn't that uncommon, they cannot get prescribed the medication, until the 2 weeks they already were given.
This means, people with ADHD cannot get advance prescriptions for travel or things like that.
In other words, the current health system of Japan makes the life of ADHD patients worse than it should be just because of a dumb media scandal back in 2007.
2 ( +3 / -1 )
People need to stop their obsession with SARS-CoV-2.
The vaccines, as they are right now are more than enough. The scary part of COVID-19 is over, it has been over since people took the vaccine, but the anxiety has remained, and people are still looking for a magical vaccine that will get rid of the virus forever.
Chances are it won't happen, and to be honest, we don't need to get rid of it.
Some people might need some sort of reinforcement, but it would be limited and complemented with other stuff, like people already did for other respiratory illnesses.
1 ( +4 / -3 )
I don't know what's the obsession of the Media with Musk.
A news article of a comment he made on Twitter on another Tweet that is actually pretty common (and even he said so).
5 ( +7 / -2 )
I don't like this kind of questioning, because most people are not 100% for or against abortion, most people believe that abortion should be legal until some point.
People who are on either extreme are just that, extremists, and most of the normal conversations are on the nuance about until what point should abortion be legal.
But the media almost always try to bring the most extreme positions and try to put them one against other, and then try to make you "choose" "which one do you support?".
0 ( +2 / -2 )
Twitter is already toxic, it is in fact one of the most toxic Social Networks in existence.
Trolls and Bots are free to do whatever they want, but if you are neither, but just happen to have strong opinions that oppose the Twitter board of censorship, unlike actual trolls and bots, you will get the ban hammer without a doubt.
In fact, one tactic that trolls and bots use is, mass false reporting of accounts, which actually works, and unless you are somewhat relevant, even if you show in your appeal without a doubt that you are not violating any of the rules of twitter, you probably won't get that account back, unless it gets some sort of attention by the media or other "relevant" twitter users.
It is a horrible site that has a very poor handle of actual people violating their rules, but they are ban hammer happy to ban anyone they do not like or just if they get enough reports.
Removing the banhammer will not make the trolls disappear, but at least you don't have to be scared that the trolls can get you banned, or that something you said is offensive to someone in the twitter board of censorship, making the site a little less toxic.
Now, if you are also able to do something about bots, and add more ways to avoid or combat trolls targeting you, the site could become actually pretty decent.
7 ( +7 / -0 )
Poking the hornest's nest.
And for what exactly?
-1 ( +1 / -2 )
It's so good to see that , just like in the wars of old, people continue to harbor feelings of animosity against regular people of a particular nationality because of war propaganda.
Good to see everything Russian canceled, Russians getting deported, visas canceled, and treated as criminals for the crime of having being born in that awful country.
Like some politician said when this whole ordeal started "there are no innocent Russians".
(Of course, this is all sarcasm)
1 ( +2 / -1 )
This is 100% political, and most people who understand this matter know that any real ease of borders will happen only AFTER the elections.
5 ( +17 / -12 )
I also have to make clear that the reason most of these places say to implement this policy, is at the request of the Government.
For example, planes have enforced this because it is a policy of "THE SCHEDULED AIRLINES ASSOCIATION OF JAPAN", which has deep links with Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, and they are basically forced to follow what the Ministry says, or there will be consequences.
Another good example are Movie Theaters, which enforce these rules because they are all part of the "Japan Association of Theater Owners", which not only has deep connections with the Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare, but the organization was created by law in 1957 with the "Law Concerning the Appropriateness and Promotion of Life Sanitation-related Business Operations".
Most restaurants that I've encountered that enforce this do it because it is a requirement for them to get extra Covid relief money (which also includes things like closing early, and things like that).
And so on... In other words, even if it is not by "law" that these requirements exists, the government hand is behind it all.
2 ( +3 / -1 )
For people who are saying that masks are not mandatory, while technically true in the "legal" sense, they are mandatory for all intents and purposes, unless you are willing to have a legal discussion every single time they are pushed.
People who say that there is no "enforcement" because they some times have gone without masks and found no problems, I can only assume it is really just "some times", and to places like a super or a conbini.
Here in Japan places like Theaters, Planes, Karaoke, Costco, some restaurants (specially buffets), Gyms, any type of school, including open air motorcycle schools, Museums, among others DO say to require masks, that people not wearing masks "might" not enter, and they DO enforce it.
I have had the misfortune to be painfully aware of this, because my partner should not wear masks because of a condition he has, and we are CONSTANTLY discriminated and in a battle against these zealots.
We also found out that in places like planes, you can have a "face shield", or how we like to call them "mask police deflectors", which are a joke, but at least people do not longer bother you anymore.
Many of these business claim not to discriminate against people who cannot wear masks (since that is actually against the law), but for all intents and purposes they are.
For example, plains tell you to tell them beforehand about it, supposedly so you are no bothered after boarding, but we have STILL being bothered at the airport, changing our seats multiple times, and always ending way in the back isolated from the rest of the plane.
Places like the Maruyama Zoo in Sapporo has this wonderful program for people who cannot wear masks in which you are FORCED to wear an armband showing that you are "maskless", which seems like something that has never been used in the history of the world as a way to shame and discriminate people.
0 ( +3 / -3 )
He also said, "I think the time in which Japan will remove masks in a 'living with covid' situation will not come".
Original Japanese Quote: "ウィズコロナの状態でマスクを外す時期は日本において来ないと思っている"
He is basically either still believing that the virus can be eradicated, going against what the scientific consensus is, or he believes that masks should stay permanent.
16 ( +18 / -2 )
Posted in: Japan should use the COVID downturn to improve aspects of tourism. Japan was not quite ready for a big influx of tourism … The new policy of focusing on sustainability, but not hurrying to increase inbounds, I hope will be effective and show results when the border opens up more freely. See in context
At the start of 2020 and in 2019 I remember how there was a movement to basically somehow stop inbound tourism because there was a lot of "crowding", like in Kyoto, but at the time it didn't seemed as a position that was posible.
But now, after 2 years of extreme border measures that do not even seem to be ending any time soon, I just hope this kind of language and speak isn't used to replace the reason of the border restrictions for Covid to border restriction for "sustainability".
2 ( +2 / -0 )
This madness of removing trashcans started after the Tokyo terrorist attack by Asahara Shoko back in the 90s, because of some mostly irrational and unproven fear that there could put Sarin inside of trash cans and people around the trash can could die.
Now, almost 30 years after that, after all the propaganda of "carrying your own trash" that became so effective that people now think that is normal, then they can remove every single trash can so that they never have to deal with them anymore.
But as always, story repeats itself, the government pushes for some irrational measure based on an irrational fear which ends up becoming a permanent measure which is no longer related to the original reason why they were removed.
10 ( +20 / -10 )
This was one of the most biased articles I've read on this site, and that's saying something.
The only thing I got out of it is that the writer really dislikes Elon and he is trying to character assassinate him with a lot of stuff that isn't relevant to the Twitter news.
What I wasn't able to get out of this is the actual effect of a takeover from Elon would have on the shareholders, and if that was a good or bad idea, which is kind of what I was expecting from this article.
8 ( +11 / -3 )
The Japanese measures are completely irrational, and the cap is nothing more than a draconian measure, since most people who would enter otherwise are already blocked by the temporary visa ban.
I mean, you have to be boosted in order to be allowed to avoid quarantine, when most people in Japan still cannot get the booster.
The prime minister is playing with people's lives just because he knows that the border restrictions are a popular measure, and he care way more about maintaining his own approval rating than caring about the lives of anyone who is affected by this.
-3 ( +3 / -6 )
Posted in: Whatever your personal views are about coronavirus vaccines, what advice would you give to an unvaccinated person who was worried about whether or not he/she should get the vaccine? See in context
If you are vulnerable and have not got the virus yet, the risk of the vaccine is way less than the risk of getting covid.
You are playing Russian roulette at that point, for really not a good reason.
If you are young, healthy or already got infected, you are probably fine.
Unvaccinated young people are at the same risk than vaccinated older people, and natural immunity from infection was finally just proven without a trace of a doubt by the CDC that it is better than the vaccine, so you are also ok.
5 ( +9 / -4 )
So are you saying that there are increases in people requiring other treatment?
What it means is, virtually everyone who tests positive will appear in the "Hospitalization" statistic, since it is a bad translation of the already obtuse terminology the ministry of health is using.
A more accurate translation, which is the one used by Toyokeizai, is "Active Cases".
Hospitalization records are being seen in the US
In the case of the US, most "hospitalizations" are actually incidental. They are mostly people already in the hospital for something unrelated who got tested and appeared positive.
The CDC itself has lately admitted as much.
0 ( +1 / -1 )
There was indeed a further 9,750 hospitalisations since yesterday.
Because SARS-CoV-2 is classified in its own weird infection classification, Japan's way of counting hospitalizations that are not serious include people who are under treatment in their own home.
Look at what the page you wrote says about Hospitalizations:
Hospitalizations = People with positive PCR tests who need hospitalization **or other treatment***
-2 ( +4 / -6 )
is it mild enough to be spread through the population and the small number of people who need hospitalized does not strained the medical system?
It is pretty mild. Coronavirus are mostly mild viruses.
Unlike influenza, Stage 1 of the Coronavirus isn't that "toxic" to the body, so most of the time it is fought just without the need of antibodies, while Stage 1 influenza is a pretty toxic virus that most of the time does require antibodies to fight it.
Stage 2 Coronavirus, which is when the your body wasn't able to get rid of virus without antibodies, is the point when your body starts to create Coronavirus specific antibodies, which is when it shows symptoms like fever. The body, if it had a previous infection of a coronavirus, will have less problem creating antibodies because of T-Cell memory. The thing with SARS-CoV-2, is that previous T-Cell memory from human coronavirus wasn't as effective, so many people that were never infected before by this virus, had a longer and stronger Stage 2 Coronavirus infection.
Then, SARS-CoV-2 has a nasty Stage 3 infection in some rare cases, which is the well known SARS-like Acute Respiratory Infection, which happens because of a mechanism SARS type virus have for infecting cells, which end up creating Cytokines, and can end up as a Cytokine-Storm.
Most of the original reports back in March 2020 of people dying suddenly on the streets, and people who were all right all of the sudden having to get to the hospital was because they developed this Stage 3 infection.
If you get to the Stage 3, then you chances of dying go up pretty high, and your chances of developing sequalae after this infection also go high, which is the real "Long-Covid". Without stage 3 infection, SARS-CoV-2 is pretty much just another coronavirus.
The vaccine, as it is antibody base, tries to stop the virus at the 2nd stage of the infection, and if you had the jab recently, it could very well stop it at Stage 1, because there are already a high number of SARS-CoV-2 specific antibodies in your blood, which is why the Vaccine is good at avoiding serious infection, because it avoids the 3rd stage.
Thing is, Omicron lacks for the most part this Stage 3, because the method it uses to infect cells is completely different, and it no longer creates Cytokine storms, and as a result is actually a more efficient way of infecting cells, so that's why the infection rate also went up.
Looking at the Pathogenesis of the virus, is pretty clear that Omicron is something completely different to what the other SARS-CoV-2 variants were, and it is way more similar to a regular Human coronavirus.
So, how mild is it? About as mild as human coronavirus are. There is still a very rare chance of a TMPRSS2 expression, and therefore the possibility of a SARS-like Stage 3 infection, but since it is not the most efficient way of infection, statistically speaking is really not that much of a concern, since the Cytokine Storm usually happen because of a lot of TMPRSS2 expression.
1 ( +6 / -5 )
But the no. of death in Japan and Australia are low
Just a little bit more of context, the death rate for Japan and Australia has always been low, even before vaccines.
Vaccines protect you mostly for SARS-like serious infection, so it is good for vulnerable populations against the original wild type, Alpha and Delta variants.
Against omicron, it doesn't make much more sense, since Omicron no longer causes SARS-like Cytokine Storm because of its lack of TMPRSS2 expression for infecting host cells.
We are at the point of the pandemic where the whole point that made people fear SARS-CoV-2, which was its ability to cause sudden Cytokine Storms on some rare cases, putting suddenly some people in a very serious condition, and usually killing them, is no longer that big of a concern.
But because of the last 2 years of complete madness, it seems we no longer fear SARS-CoV-2 because of this fact, but just by the fact that it exists in this world.
3 ( +5 / -2 )
I'm surprised the border restrictions, mask wearing, high vaccination rate, fever checking at the door, and paranoia didn't work to keep out Omicron
Who could think that acting out of fear, with a "we need to do anything" mentality for a problem that has existed for humane since they evolved to think about it, wouldn't actually solve the problem.
But people love a good theater to keep the illusion of control.
People at this point are more willing to just destroy society than to admit that they are not in control, never were, and start to think about rational strategies to deal with this world.
-1 ( +3 / -4 )
However, it is still killing people and putting many in the ICU.
Just like any other respiratory virus does. The South Africa data, a place where the omicron peak already came and went, has a very low vaccination rate, shows that the number of actual hospitalization because of Covid, and Covid related deaths are a times of magnitude lower than other variants.
The case rate of South Africa for omicron was about the same as with Delta, but the death rate was 1/5.
And even places like the CDC are starting to admit that the number of hospitalizations and death are overinflated for Omicron, since many of those are incidental infections, and the people are not in the hospital for Covid, they just tested positive while in the hospital for something unrelated.
But this narrative of fear continues endlessly. I mean, as long as there is a single death from Omicron, we can continue to use exactly the same language you are using.
-1 ( +4 / -5 )
I had understood that getting the experimental mRNA vaccine from Moderna would make travel easier for me and that is important to see my large US family.
Most people that understand the science believed this as well, as after people get vaccinated, and the death rate of the virus drops, all the restrictions should have dropped, since the whole point of having them, which was at that point "waiting for the vaccine" was already archived.
Then it started to get pushed into "until X% of people ar vaccinated", which implies that they are aiming for sterilization, which wasn't the original purpose, and for which there was little scientific support, but "getting rid of covid" was a good political slogan, and so the route to implicit zero covid began, and it is where we are right now.
We are in the point where actually mortality risk, serious of infectiousness risk is no longer a factor, and where the goal seams to get the virus "under control", and making that case number as lower as posible, ad-infinitum.
1 ( +7 / -6 )
have you tried face shield if he can't wear a mask?
We just have for the most park stopped going out. Less stress, and less discrimination.
-5 ( +1 / -6 )
Why do they need to force the government to acknowledge their relationships?
Because it is in the constitution? Marriage is a right, what we ask is just for equal treatment under the law, and the Japanese court system seems to agree that we are not getting that.
forcing everyone else to accept their alternative lifestyle
Yeah, when 2 gay guys get married, armed people enter your house to force to accept the fact that they are now legally together.
and change our cultures and societies to praise them for it
How dramatic. It's just a legal contract, its a ethnic cleansing, or the institution of a new state religion.
why mix the government into your relationships?
Because it is mixed in relationships already. It is in the constitution. So either the government gets to recognize same sex relationships, or it recognizes no one.
I can say exactly the same point to you. Why involve the government in your heterosexual relationship?
2 ( +5 / -3 )