Japan Today

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Posted in: Kishida pins hopes on wage hikes to accelerate wealth redistribution See in context

The three arrows of Kishida's economic recovery plan:

Urgenomics, Hopenomics and Mullingnomics.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan, Taiwan ruling parties to boost economic security cooperation See in context

I think people are forgetting something here. China's economy may be in deep trouble due to the effects of the one child policy. The four-two-one problem where one Chinese teenager will have to support the pension of their two parents and four grandparents is a ticking time bomb. And unless the CCP finds a way to radically improve productivity, China may fall into the middle income trap and become an old, low/middle income country. Japan and Korea are becoming old, high income countries.

Immigration is a no go, since China is super xenophobic. Even if they opened up to immigration, most immigrants will prefer to go to Canada/USA.

They are all in deep trouble. But out of the three, I am betting that Korea will be the best positioned to overcome this challenge.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

Posted in: Nearly 200,000 could die if M9 level quake hits northern Japan See in context

Scary stuff and yet you see new development in Odaiba for example.

Yep, they are not planning for the future, carelessly constructing towers, high rise apartments and waterfront properties on reclaimed land. As Samit Basu correctly stated, a Nankai trough megathrust earthquake will cause liquefaction of all reclaimed land in the Tokyo Bay area and bring it all crumbling to the ground.

Forget about earthquekes and tsunamis, what about sea level rise due to climate change? It is utterly irresponsible to build so many residential properties and high rise buildings so close to the coast, given they may be flooded by 2m of sea level rise in 50 years.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Posted in: Nearly 200,000 could die if M9 level quake hits northern Japan See in context

Welp, Japan should move its capital and industry to Fukuoka or Hokkaido or somewhere alond the West Coast for lower Earthquake risk.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Posted in: Panel recommends no change to male-only emperor system See in context

Eh. Who cares at this point? Let them do what they want. It doesn't matter to the average Japanese citizen what happens to the royal family.

-8 ( +8 / -16 )

Posted in: Toyota promises more electric models, investment See in context

well what took them so long? In the meantime American, European and Korean automakers have already cemented their dominance in the EV segment with their own EV line ups.

The good news is that EV market is still in its early stages and evolving, so Toyota still has time to make a comeback.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Posted in: Japan, U.S. vow to boost capabilities to counter China See in context


Lapdog? Why is this myth about South Korea being beholden to the CCP so prevalent?

Koreans are now becoming increasingly more anti-China, just as much as they are anti-Japan. It started with the economic blockade in response to THAAD and now there is widespread anger given how China is approriating Korean culture as their own (see Hanbok controversy).

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Posted in: Japan's military, among world's strongest, looks to build See in context

Hey here's an idea. Since Japan's youth are becoming poorer everyday with more and more of them working temporary jobs with poverty wages, why not create program to draft these young people into the military with a livable salary. At least that way the government can justify military spending whilst improving living conditions for the people.

Oh one can keep dreaming.

Given that the growing elderly population is becoming the LDP's largest voter base, the government will keep paying welfare for the oyajis at the expense of the youth.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Posted in: Japan's military, among world's strongest, looks to build See in context

Given Japan's poor fiscal health, any funding that is used to expand the military will be diverted away from social programs for young people, child support and unemployment benefits.

This will worsen the birth rate, intensify ageing of the population....and then within 20 years China won't need to invade Japan, becuase Japanese society and economy will be utterly broken.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Posted in: Nissan investing in electric vehicles, battery development See in context

Well, if they manage to develop a cheaper, more powerful battery (preferrably to the cost and energy capacity of a tank of gas), they have solved not only the EV problem, but the whole problem with electricity, namely that it can not be effficiently stored.\So far, no company has.

They dont need to. An EV with is 300 mile range is sufficient to meet the needs of urban and sub-urban dwellers, which is where 80% of people live in developed countries. For travel and personal transport outside cities, this is where hydrogen fuel cell vehicles will come in to play. But for that we need to first establish a global green hydrogen energy suppy, which is what Korea and Japan is doing.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Posted in: Japan, Vietnam foreign ministers vow to promote free, open Indo-Pacific See in context

@Septim Dynasty

Um, no. Vietnam will become a powerful regional player in South Asia, but not to the scale of China.

And that is not taking into account a major problem both countries are facing: A declining AND ageing population.

The West has the luxury of the best and most skilled immigrants from around the world readily flying to their shores to contribute to their society.

At best a nation like China can only hope to rely on unskilled, temporary labourers and even that wont help them much becuase they will see a decline of 200 million people over the next 50 years.

And let us not forget that Vietnam and China are net emigrant nations.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: Samsung to build $17 bil chip plant in Texas See in context

Finally, they already have a 14nm fab in Austin, so another fab close-by doesn't seem unreasonable from a logistics stand-point. The new fab will probably service Tesla and other automotive companies as EV sales take-off.

This is a more likely reason.

In the highly automated, expensive and technically intensive semiconductor industry, labor costs are meaningless. Pretty sure a technician in a fab plant has a six figure salary because you need the best of the best. A minor mistake can derail the whole operation. Please correct me if I am wrong.

I also think that Texas probably less restrictive regulations than California in regards to semiconductor operations.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Japan to release hundreds of thousands of kiloliters of reserve oil See in context

The faster countries can become self-reliant on their own energy needs, the faster they can break away from OPEC.

Maybe, restarting those shuttered nuclear reactors will be a good idea? Intensify investment into green hydrogen energy supply from Australia and Chile?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan's hit 'One Piece' anime marks 1,000th episode See in context


But Naruto's fillers are more palatable and weave into the main story better. One Piece has good filler stories, but they drag on too much for too long and go off on a tangent from the main story. That can be a turn off for some people.

Or maybe its my age bias, becuase I watched Naruto when I was like 12 started One Piece when I was 18.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan's hit 'One Piece' anime marks 1,000th episode See in context

Naruto is by far my favourite anime and has a special place in my heart. So I naturally started to watch One Piece ......and gave up by 200th episode. SO MANY FILLERS!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese CEOs boldly going where no women have gone before See in context


I graduated from highschool last year, and I can say for sure that the girls easily outperformed the boys in the university entrance exams, and did especially well in math and science. This is true in the rest of my country. The problem is that most of the girls seem obsessed with idea of persuing careers in Law, Medicine and Business. These are seen as the "high status, well paying jobs" of the social ladder, especially among asian girls. Engineering was often seen as boys club (its not anymore over here). One girl who was very interested in engineering was worried that there would be too many boys in the course. I had to explain to her that it really is not that bad.

So yes there are specialised scholarships and affirmative action programs aimed at girls for STEM, but they play little to no role in getting more women in engineering. It really boils down to the negative perceptions that women previously had with STEM. So now that Engineering has joined the club of "high status, well paying jobs" more girls are choosing it. And to be fair a lot of the boys chose Engineering for the same reason as the girls.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Mitsubishi Shipbuilding to build large-size ammonia carrier fueled by ammonia See in context

Even if Ammonia is used it needs to be "cracked" back into H2 gas first, which requires additional energy input. Is there any info out there on the cost effectiveness of this process?

First we use excess renewable energy from say Australia to produce ammonia, transport by ship to location, then crack to H2 to be supllied to fuel cell cars.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese CEOs boldly going where no women have gone before See in context


At my university and others all across the country, the number of women enrolling in STEM and Engineering disciplines is increasing significantly. In Civil Engineering for example, my cohort had slightly more than 50% women this year. And this is because more women are starting to consciously accept Engineering as an attractive career path in the same way that they used to with Law, Commerce and Medicine.

I'm pretty sure the biggest reason for this is the increased visibility of female engineers as role models in the industry that is being perceived by prospective girls studying science in high school. That has definitely paid off.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Posted in: Japanese CEOs boldly going where no women have gone before See in context


Time to flip the script then. We need to encourage and normalise stay at home fathers and house husbands and encourage mothers to become the breadwinners of the family. This will also improve the birthrate as women are more willing to have more children if the father commits to an active role in the child rearing process.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Posted in: Japan's economy contracts on shrinking consumption, exports See in context

@Samit Basu

China and Korea rising

China and Korea are going to face a reckoning in the future, based on their abnormally low birth rates and rapidly ageing population - Korea especially.

Whether or not Korea will thrive, depends on how Koreans as a society will learn from the mistakes of Japan and adapt.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Japanese fans react to Netflix live-action 'One Piece' casting See in context


This is why Japan should have had its own equivalent of Netflix - with a global footprint.

Now that Sony Pictures (pretty much an American company in all but name) has taken Crunchyroll and Netflix exclusively making adaptations of anime, they will relentlessly modify the source material for western audiences and ruin it for good. Not that it matters for Netflix or Sony as long as they make their money.

And Japan's anime and manga industry just refuses to adapt to the 21st century. Korea takes this seriously - as seen with Naver expanding their commercialisation of Webtoons and state sponsored K-dramas and K-pop targeted towards western auidences to expand Korea cultural reach.

Japan already has a powerful cultural soft power weapon in anime yet they are just wasting away its global untapped potential.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Posted in: Abe becomes head of largest faction in Japan's ruling party See in context


How is the Plaza Accord relevant now? Its been 30 years since then. What is J-gov doing to adress the problems of of today (ageing population, low birth rate, increase in low paying temporary jobs etc).

At least there is some good news coming out of Korea.


-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: Rolls-Royce launches nuclear reactor business See in context


Britain now only gets 3% of its electricity from wind. More than half comes from combined cycle gas power plants and 16% nuclear. A week ago Britain got 40% of its power from wind.

So these SMR projects makes sense.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Rolls-Royce launches nuclear reactor business See in context

It took a global energy crisis for this to happen.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Abe becomes head of largest faction in Japan's ruling party See in context


The current leadership and elite idolise the 1980's, Japan's glory days. But even these guys are nothing compared to their predecessors. Despite their backward worldview, petty corruption, Lockheed Marubeni and so on, at least the old guard had some modicum of competence and vision for the country.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: Toshiba to split business into three companies: report See in context

@ It isn't helping that the government and Japan Inc, is burning trillions of yen on vanity projects like the Mitsubishi SpaceJet (due to be cancelled) and the even more disasterous, overdue and overbudget Maglev Shinkansen (they know full well how Maglev projects failed in Germany and China).

They could have spent those trillions on

welfare for children, daycare and unemployed

paid parental leave for fathers AND mothers.

domestic funding for emerging industries such as renewables (which Japan is awfully slow to implement) that could create jobs for rural prefectures (REAL jobs, unlike building a gaint squid in a rural town with taxpayer yen)

developing software industries, IT for the upcoming 4th industrial revolution (even qualified IT professionals are treated like dirt in Japan, while they are paid millions and sought after in the US)

But the Japanese public are so easy to fool by showing off maglev trains and planes.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Posted in: Toyota ranked one of worst major automakers for emissions efforts See in context


Sure, Toyota is making killer profits now, but what about the next 30 years?

And when is the revolutionary solid state battery EV going to come out, as Toyota promised years ago?

Or is Toyota going to wait for another ten or more years to develope their batteries and hydrogen tech while other automakers like Tesla and Volkswagen continue to eat up market share with EV's ?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: New Zealand strait crossed for first time by electric plane See in context

@Peter Neil

Sorry if I wasn't clear before, maximum landing weight is lower than maximum take off weight, which is why large planes with liquid fuels can dump them easily to lose weight quickly for emergency landing. You can't do that with batteries, unless you have some mechanism to jettison the batteries from the aircraft over the ocean, which is impractical.

The bio-fuels with plant and animal fats would be even better if they used bacon fat. People would love to smell planes going overhead.

That was just an experiment done by Boeing for proof of concept, to show that large modern airliners can easily swap jet fuel for biofuels derived from disposable sources like vegetable oil and biomass including animal fats.

Of course this would not happen in a large commercial scale, as creating aviation biofuels from conventional sources like corn or vegetable oils would be very inefficient, costly and damaging for the enviornment which defeats the purpose of carbon neutrality.

The most likely contender would be genetically modified micro algea:

The have very high lipid content so lots can be grown in a small area to harvest fuel.

They grow very quickly, so you can harvest and process fuel daily, whereas corn based biofuels take many months.

Algea can use industrial waste, sewage or even flue gases from gas or coal power plants as a closed cycle system for reusing waste to acheive carbon neutrality. And so on.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: New Zealand strait crossed for first time by electric plane See in context

This bickering about electrifying aviation is a waste of time and money. It is impractical first of all as explained in above comments. Secondly the aviation industry accounts for only 2% of global CO2 emissions.


Everything else comes from energy consumption, road transport, shipping, agriculture etc. for which we already have green workable solutions but the lack of political will to do anything about it.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Nuclear power advocates say it is a necessary energy source that will buy the time needed to develop cleaner and safer alternatives. Do you agree with this statement? See in context

For renewables Battery storage is Key. Pumped Hydro works too but it is limited since Japan has already built a lot of hydropower dams.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

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