mikeylikesit comments

Posted in: When do you think a decision will be made on whether or not to cancel the Tokyo Olympics? See in context

Think of the athletes. They have literally worked their whole lives for this.

Plenty of other people have worked their whole lives (not just their youth) to build businesses, which are being shredded by economic lockdowns. Is there a reason why athletes should get preferential treatment over everyone else?

I highly doubt the Olympics will be canceled, but not for the sake of the athletes. There’s simply too much money in it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: WHO team arrives in Wuhan to search for pandemic origins See in context

When a pandemic strikes, never fear! WHO is only a year behind.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Posted in: The public, already used to the unrelenting spread of infections and tired of life under self-imposed restrictions, seems less scared of the virus than during the previous COVID-19 state of emergency between April and May last year. Fear drove people to exercise self-control during the previous state of emergency. We can't expect them to do the same this time. See in context

This is basic human biology. Cortisol is meant to be released in short bursts to heighten the body’s fight-or-flight response in moments of fear and stress. Long-term high cortisol levels are toxic to the body, causing weight gain, diabetes, mental illness, and a host of other health problems. Normal people will drift out of a fear state over time.

Public health officials who relied on fear to contain the virus during the first wave cannot expect to use the same tool for the third wave. That would be denying the science of human biology. Each time we try to scare people with the same threat, fewer people will get scared. Health officials need a different approach.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: South Korean court orders Japan to compensate 12 former sex slaves See in context

If you reach into any jurisdiction to commit a crime, you become subject to that jurisdiction’s law.

While true on the surface, this does not address the problem in this case. The questions of jurisdiction and standing are important ones. Prior to 1945, no Korean government existed, and there were no Korean laws. Unless you allow for ex post facto application of law, the only jurisdiction under which a suit against the Japanese government could be brought for actions prior to 1945 is a Japanese court. Everyone in Korea was under Japanese law at that time.

If we are going to allow ex post facto application of one nation's laws on other nations, then can Brits sue Italy for the Roman invasion in modern British courts?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Posted in: South Korean court orders Japan to compensate 12 former sex slaves See in context

None of this is ever about getting actual compensation for victims. It's all political play aimed at stirring up faux-nationalist sentiment in Korea. Why? It's better (from the perspective of the Korean government) to have people angry at Japan than it is to have people angry at the Korean government.

Korean politicians took huge sums in compensation money intended for these victims, and they kept the money to fund their pet projects instead of giving it to the women. That stinks for the victims, and it stinks for Japan.

In this case, the Korean court has no power to force the Japanese government to pay. If the judges were honest about the law, existing treaties would mean that the case had no standing from the start. Everyone knew this, but the case is allowed forward to score political points domestically. Victims are being victimized again because they will never see a yen or won from either Japan or Korea.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Posted in: Gov't to consider new COVID-19 state of emergency declaration See in context

In related news, Japanese scientists have just discovered a COVID mutation that occurs only in Japan. The spiky parts of the virus are 2 nanometers shorter, making it safe to Japanese people before 8 p.m.

Alcohol seems to affect the virus mutation, shifting the time an hour earlier if anyone in the room happens to be drinking.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

Posted in: Reformers look to fix Japan's damaging youth baseball culture See in context

Positive reforms that Japanese sports teams could make for kids:

1) Have seasons that allow kids to play more than one sport. A few elite teams can still practice year-round, but most kids should be free to play multiple sports throughout the year.

2) Stop late-night practices for young kids. Practicing until after 9 p.m. on school nights several days a week is too late and too much for eight-year-olds.

3) Stop the long-distance road runs. No baseball player ever has to jog at a steady pace for 30 minutes. They need short, explosive bursts of about 30 meters, and never over 120 meters. Distance running grows a different kind of muscle cell that is incapable of explosive speed.

4) Stop over-pitching players at all levels. Kill off the idea of an “ace.” At each developmental level, set strict pitch limits. Stop ruining young arms.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Suga seeks to make antivirus measures legally binding for businesses, punish violators See in context

In other countries, the threat of arrest had the reverse effect of driving people to protest draconian government orders, which ultimately were far less successful at combating the virus than Japan’s softer social pressure approach was. Why aim for a police state now when that approach already backfired elsewhere?

Scratch a politician and find a tyrant...every time.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: 4 die after being buried by snow in Yamagata See in context

Why do they go out in this weather to remove the snow!?

Because it has snowed in Yamagata that much in the past week, and it’s still snowing now. If they don’t remove snow now, more will pile up. They have to be able to get out of their houses. Leave the snow in the roof, and they risk more dangerous falls of snow from the roof or even collapse of the roof.

People don’t do this for fun, but out of necessity.

16 ( +17 / -1 )

Posted in: Why has the wearing of masks as a means of coping with the coronavirus become more politicized in the U.S. than in any other country? See in context

Masks became politicized in the U.S. mainly for two reasons:

1) The CDC, Fauci, and other health officials lied. Months later, those same officials admitted that they had told the American public masks were not necessary or helpful because the government and hospitals wanted to stockpile PPE. That lie likely cost thousands of lives and eroded trust in health officials. At about the same time, the same officials sold Americans on a two-week lockdown to “bend the curve,” which they then tried to extend to two months or more. As fatigue and economic losses mounted, this bait-and-switch further eroded trust in anything public health officials said. When public orders changed to “wear a mask,” many people responded with a middle finger.

2) Arresting people. Japan hasn’t arrested kids playing in parks or people walking outdoors without masks. Adding the threat of jail to a mask order inevitably politicizes masks.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Posted in: The election is over; Trump's attacks will linger See in context

Not true. Nobody questioned the validity of the 2016 vote count

Right... nobody at all was urging Trump delegates to faithlessly vote for Clinton on grounds that the vote was compromised. Nobody spent the next three years in Congress investigating utterly scurrilous and unfounded claims that Trump colluded with Russians to rig the vote. Nobody alleged that Diebold machines flipped votes in Ohio, giving Bush the win. Nobody alleged that the Florida outcome was illegitimate, rendering the Electoral College illegitimate. None of that ever happened. Even if it did, it certainly had no effect on the public of undermining confidence in elections.

Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia. Epstein killed himself. Repeat all of these long enough, and people might actually believe them. Nice plan you have there, but it’s not quite working yet.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Posted in: The election is over; Trump's attacks will linger See in context

Strangely, no mention of the four years of Russiagate conspiracies peddled by Democrats who refused to accept the 2016 results, or of Diebold conspiracy theories by Democrats who refused to accept 2004, or of the broad refusal in 2000 to accept that Bush actually won Florida and that the Supreme Court’s refusal to overturn state results (the same refusal that the court just made to Trump) didn’t steal the election. Apparently, none of those has had any effect on Americans’ confidence in elections.

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Posted in: U.S. states scramble to curb COVID as California sets record before lockdown See in context

It's a good thing California and other states are taking the iniative instead of asking the feds 'Mother, may I?'. 

If the authority exists in the U.S. to impose lockdowns, it only exists at the state level. The only power at the federal level that would come close is martial law, and I very much doubt you want Trump suspending normal law enforcement and ordering in the military to control the population.

At this point, however, even WHO has declared that lockdowns are ineffective at managing COVID, often causing more harm than good, and recommends against them.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Posted in: How can a U.S. president unify the country when almost half the voters didn't choose him? How does any elected leader in such a situation go about such a task? See in context

Obama entered the presidency with broad support and a high positivity rating. Obama, with a Democratic Congress behind him, immediately launched a strongly leftist agenda that alienated half the country. Barring another event like 9/11, which is the only way Bush established unity after the contentious 2000 election, any future president is going to have a very difficult time appealing broadly to the American political spectrum.

Biden, if he survives the electoral college, will not start with any more unity than Trump did. This contended election ensures that. Moreover, the left wing of Biden's own party hates him, just as the left wing of Trump's party hates him, and so Biden will have to deal with divisions in party as well as in the country. Biden's tendency to shout at voters, call them stupid, and tell them to shut up when they disagree with him will not help Biden mend fences.

Politics in America is now fractured as much on identity lines as on ideological lines, and the ideological lines are rapidly being redrawn. It's no longer "conservative" vs. "liberal," but now nationalist vs. globalist. Biden is strongly in the latter camp, whereas the populist swell in the U.S. is trending away from globalists with their multi-national corporations, global financial schemes, and endless wars to protect them.

If Biden enters the presidency with a Democratic Congress, I predict he will make very little effort to reconcile with the right. His main concern will be securing the votes in Congress of those on his left, which means deeper divisions nationally. If Biden enters office and Congress remains split, Biden will have to reconcile more. There will be deep partisan infighting and no unity, but they will have to compromise on budgets at the very least.

And if recounts and court cases shift the election back to Trump, then America is likely to explode. Antifa will burn every major city to the ground.

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

Posted in: Is Joe Biden's election as U.S. president good news for Japan? See in context

Japan already suffers from extreme weather and has no fossil fuels. A transition away from them will strengthen Japan, not weaken it.

Japan also has no domestic production of rare earth elements or uranium, so Japan will remain dependent on other nations for energy production regardless. The biggest global benefactor from the move to wind and solar power has been China.

And what extreme weather? It's a typical November day in what's been a fairly typical weather year for Japan.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Posted in: Is Joe Biden's election as U.S. president good news for Japan? See in context

If Biden becomes president—which remains an “if”—Biden will almost certainly return to the Obama-era policies of cozying to China instead of being aggressive on trade and currency.

Japan, meanwhile, is unlikely to regain its special status as the most important Asian nation to American interests. That ended around the time Koizumi left office, and China’s money is now too influential for Japan to get the same attention as in the past.

-11 ( +4 / -15 )

Posted in: Do you support the government's call for companies to take an extended holiday over the New Year period until Jan 12? See in context

Who pays?

Salaried employees end up getting free vacation at the expense of the employer. The company makes no revenue while closed, but still has to pay people during their extra time off.

Hourly workers simply lose out on wages. Their employers also lose revenue, but at least have a lighter burden on payroll.

If the plan is for the government to bail out workers and businesses that extend the vacation, then the nation is simply taking out more debt against their children’s future.

Nothing is free.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: How important and reliable are opinion polls on elections? See in context

Polls published in the media before the election, especially in the U.S., are about manipulating public opinion and behavior. If the polls show one candidate up by ten points, it is meant to have the effects of pulling a few on-the-fence voters to the “winning” side (everybody wants to vote for a winner) and depressing the supporters of the other candidate.

The evidence for this is how the pollsters always adjust their numbers in the last week before an election. They have to maintain credibility, and so the numbers shift in a more realistic direction.

Polls reflect who one asks and what questions one asks. Pollsters have great latitude to manipulate results.

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Posted in: Win the vote but still lose? Behold the U.S. Electoral College See in context

The author and editors of this article ought to be ashamed for not doing basic fact checks.

It is untrue that no constitutional amendment has ever succeeded in modifying the electoral college. The 12th Amendment modified the electoral college. It is untrue that electors' names do not appear on ballots. States set rules for their own ballots, and the names of electors are printed below the presidential and vice-presidential candidates' names in many states. The notion of a "national popular vote" is a fiction. Each state sets its own rules about voter eligibility and registration. While the federal government has passed some laws relating to voting, there is no uniform national voting system. A person eligible to vote in one state might not be eligible under the rules of another state. As such, it's mixing apples and oranges when compiling all of the votes into a national total. That number is meaningless.

American presidential voting is a state-by-state contest. The only numbers that matter are the votinga results within each state. This is by design. America is not a populist wonderland, but a union of states. The people retain extensive rights, but the states select the president.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: LDP to exclude rank-and-file members from election to pick new leader See in context

In other words, they know they have a weak bunch of insiders vying for the top job, and they have moved to eliminate the risk of another upstart Koizumi appearing out of nowhere after the rank-and-file vote. If the rank-and-file were smart, they’d form a new party that guaranteed them the vote, leaving behind a few hundred lawmakers as a comically pathetic vestige is the LDP.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Fears pandemic will worsen birth rate, exacerbating Japan's aging crisis See in context

Gee... Japan’s birth rate peaked in 1947 when the nation’s economy was in tatters. Maybe, just maybe, the politicians and economists who claim that the birth rate is low and might sink lower because of weak economic conditions don’t have a clue what they are talking about.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: Rolling Stones warn Trump of legal action over song use See in context

Ok, none of these have any relevance to IP laws. Why are you bringing up useless information that is entirely irrelevant to the conversation?

Those examples are not entirely irrelevant. Virtually every music act in the world signs with a label, and they agree to various licensing & distribution deals by doing so. Any group, including political campaigns, can pay a licensing fee to use any song from a large catalog at a public event. The Rolling Stones, like any other act, is in that catalog. They don't retain exclusive control over when and where their songs are played.

For decades, this political posturing has played like a broken record. Such-and-such artist complains about such-and-such politician playing a song at rallies. The act blusters about it in the media with threats of lawyers. In the end, everybody knows that a lawsuit to prevent use of the song stands zero chance of success. The Stones, like other musicians before them, are milking the publicity. They get their names in the news. They get to distance themselves from a politician they don't like, and that they presume their fans don't like. They effectively make a free campaign donation against that candidate through the negative publicity. They know the campaign won't roll over and give up the right to play the song, but the longer the band can make a stink about it, the more they think it will hurt the candidate and help the band.

There's no evidence that this is politically effective--it didn't stop Bush from being reelected, and it didn't stop Trump from being elected--but it repeats without fail every presidential election cycle.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: The aid hasn't really gotten to the people who needed it most, when they needed it most. See in context

Essentially the definition of government aid then.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Working at home offers a good opportunity to review household rules which have often been fixed. Men should face the fact that they rely too much on women in terms of housework. See in context

File this as yet another example under:

[Some societal change that I desire anyway] + COVID-19 =

A societal change that should happen because of COVID-19

This opportunism is specious logic at best. Given the vast number of people who have died and been impoverished worldwide because of the pandemic, attempting to capitalize on it in this manner strikes me as rather perverse.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: 3 dead, 1 wounded in crossbow attack; suspect arrested See in context

This is the usual overly simplistic and utterly ridiculous argument from gun nuts. C'mon, it's a tired argument.

When a guy did a mass public knife attack some years back, Japan banned knives. (Oddly, they didn't ban delivery trucks, which the assailant also used, and which actually harmed more people in the attack.) That chef knife you have in your kitchen? Walk out the door with that in Japan, and you're technically breaking the law unless you've applied for a special permit from the police. The burden is on you to show that you have a valid and lawful reason (such as taking it to a knife sharpener) to have it outside of your home. Police never try to arrest housewives and families doing barbecues because there is an unwritten code in Japan to put many laws on the books that are never enforced unless the police feel the need to. But it doesn't change the fact that knives longer than your pinky finger are banned.

That Japan would ban something in the wake of an attack is far from a ridiculous argument. It's reality.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: 3 dead, 1 wounded in crossbow attack; suspect arrested See in context

The good thing about bows is unlike guns, you really don't have a legitimate excuse that it misfired.

A crossbow can misfire. It's a projectile under tension with a trigger that releases it. Once loaded, it's not unlike a gun.

That said, neither a gun nor a crossbow misfires multiple times in different directions to wound or kill four individuals.

And, really, "it misfired" is never an excuse with any weapon. Yes, weapons can misfire. It's always the responsibility of person using a gun to make sure it is aimed in a safe direction. A misfire vs. intentional shooting might change criminal charges from manslaughter to murder, but it's still criminal to mishandle a gun or bow.

Now, cue the legislation to ban bows in Japan. It might get some pushback from archery clubs around Japan, but authorities were able to ban knives without any real blowback from housewives whose kitchen knives are, technically, illegal if they ever leave the house. The common game of passing a law that will never be enforced, but is at least on the books to enforce if the police ever need it, shall begin.

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Posted in: Unrest is spreading in many U.S. cities over police brutality. What can be done to ease tensions and improve law enforcement in multiracial communities? See in context

How does one reduce tribalism in environments with tribes living among one another? Blacks have their tribe. Hispanics have their tribe. Whites, while sharply split ideologically, are increasingly displaying tribal identities because of the pressures from other tribes. Cops come from a mix of various tribes, but form an artificial tribe all of their own. Attempts to integrate the tribes are resisted by those with strong tribal identities, and those very integration attempts often drive more people to greater tribalism.

Blacks don't care at all when a black person is killed by a black policeman, but riots start when it's a white policeman. That's what tribalism looks like.

One thing that America could--and needs--to do, however, is reduce the militarization of the police. Too many cops are ex-military or wanna-be military. Too many always feel like someone is gunning for them. Too many police become police because they are Cartmans--"You will respect my authoritay!" The American military continues to sell surplus arms and vehicles to police departments, many of which are now armed better for war than for community policing.

Nobody builds an army and then never fights with it. No surprise that after building hundreds of police armies, America now has hundreds of little wars raging.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: In U.S., camera phones increasingly expose racism See in context

The latest Qanon conspiracy theory.

Who makes this stuff up?

Gee, the guy in the video, who posted this information himself to his own Facebook page, is Q? That's some heavy stuff there.

Sorry, but it's not some Qanon crypto nonsense to repeat the same facts that the guy posted to his own Facebook page. He threatened to throw doggie treats to the woman's dog. Whether his implied threat was to kidnap the dog or poison it may be unclear, but he plainly meant it as a threat. He stated himself that he intended to scare the woman. The woman responded, predictably and justifiably, but getting scared.

The man who did this is a twisted sicko. He baited a woman into a fearful confrontation, leaving her with few choices to protect herself. Run away? He's faster because she has a small dog to look after. Pull a gun? She's a liberal-minded New York woman who doesn't have one (which is probably why the jerk picked on her). Her only protection was her phone. And then this sociopath posts the video online of a confrontation that he initiated, frames her fear for her dog as racism, and unleashes a social media mob to destroy her life. Why? For the crime of exercising her dog.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: In U.S., camera phones increasingly expose racism See in context

The woman in Central Park freaked out and started calling the cops after the man accosting her about her unleashed pet threatened to toss poisoned meat to her dog.

He threatened to poison her dog, and she's racist for calling the cops on him?

In Minneapolis, the viral image is the police officer with a knee on the side of a man's neck. What isn't shown is the several minutes before that where the man is fighting with the cops as they try to get him settled in the police car. Eventually, they had to pull him back out and pin him to the ground to restrain him.

A knee to the neck is common procedure for restraining people. Cops use it all the time to keep a person pinned to the ground from moving. Yet it's suddenly racist behavior in this one case? A knee to the back or side of the neck cannot possibly cut of a person's air flow. The coroner's report is clear that the man did not die from asphyxiation, but possibly from an underlying heart condition. Do protesters care? No. They were looking for an event to fit their narrative and justify riots.

As often as not, viral video clips are cleverly edited, deceptively framed, staged nonsense. Videos can, and do, lie.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Posted in: Ruling bloc to urge gov't to retain April start for academic year See in context

Schools are already in session this year. In many parts of Japan, they were already in session when this proposal got pushed forward. Are kids for one academic year supposed to be in school for sixteen or eighteen months? Or are we cancelling school for several months, after already starting, and parents have to pick up the tab for child care?

Using this pandemic and the fear and death it has brought as a convenient excuse to promote a proposal that these same people have advocated for years is, frankly, perverse. Passing emergency relief bills...fine. Using the emergency as an excuse to ride every hobby-horse bill that's been floating around the Diet for the past decade...no.

Changing the start of the school year, especially so suddenly, was always a nonsensical proposal. Outside of a few minor benefits from the perspective of a globalist agenda (more foreign students, increased immigration, easier labor exploitation by multinational corporations), changing the school year has no real merits and some very expensive downsides. Trying during this emergency to squeeze in this change that a few elites have wanted for a long time was a craven attempt. No surprise that it failed quickly as the emergency receded. It's hard to advocate school cancellations as a justification when half the country has been in school for the better part of a month already.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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