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Posted in: Japan births hit new record low in 2020 See in context

Journalism around the world is so dismal. Next time you do an article about the birth rate in Japan maybe you can dig a little deeper than country wide numbers. You might find that Tokyo is very under-productive but Osaka is pleasantly over-productive. If it was not for the mighty people in the eating, drinking having fun part of Japan the numbers would even worse. Although I expect it has more to do with extended family support.

As for the three girls a week man he was obviously not wanting to have children. No sensible person would have a child with a man who must be so rubbish in bed he has to change partners so frequently.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Posted in: 10,000 Tokyo Olympic volunteers have now pulled out: organizers See in context

I was a volunteer. The reason was I thought it would be fun to meet people from around the world and I could have a little holiday away from Osaka. Once the decision was made that visitors from other countries would be banned then it reduced any real fun being a volunteer.

I was concerned that I would spend many hours doing nothing and feeling useless. I was concerned that although I was prepared to pay for travel and accomodation for two weeks I might be forced to quarantine myself before/after away from home at my own expense. That I might be forced to travel to for extra training at my own expense. The list of concerns grew larger when they went ahead with the flame runaround. I asked about the safety of this and was given a standard answer which did not reflect my understanding of how the desease spread and did not seem to put measures in place that would avoid it.

I then asked if I could move the places I would volunteer to Osaka and thus avoid moving around the country myself and reduce any extra costs I though they would add at the last minute. That request was denied and so I felt it pointless to continue.

To stop being a volunteer all I had to do is click a tick box and cofirm. I was not asked for a reason and therefore no one really knows why 10,000 people have stopped. I expect for many reasons but I am sure lack of communication about concerns was a major factor.

I do know people who have continued and I do know they are being asked to do things that are costing them extra. They are of course under contract and can not speak out and even if they did who would listen.

Personally when it happens I will just ignore the whole thing, ignore the products with the logos on and wait for the circus to leave town. If one person from the UK takes back and spreads the virus then I will spend the 50 pounds to take them to court personally. It is those atheletes and media and hangers on who really should be called out for being disloyal to their own countries health and welfare. They have a choice and they have chosen to be selfish.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: UK health service under pressure despite pandemic promises See in context

Three member of my family work for the NHS. One in ICU, One on a covid ward but normally on geriatric and one lab work. None of them feel like this article. Two happy with the 1%. Both my mum and dad have had very good treatment via the NHS on several occasions. I suggest if this union person does not like their work they find somewhere else.

As for the economics the NHS take an extra 0.5% of gdp each year to run no matter what happens to the rest of the ecomony. If anyone considers that a sustainable model that does not need changing then they should expect everyone to give up more and more of their earnings to pay for it. There is a massive amount of wastage in the NHS that could help and when it comes to reduction of CO2 their target is 70%. To contemplate a target so large indicates that it was being very wasteful before.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Man robbed of ¥3 mil on Nagoya street See in context

@cleo

On occasion I have been into JA and every time I have seen old men getting large amounts of cash. Not that I want to encourage crime but I am amazed how open and easy it would be to rob these people. JA does not even have security windows.

It is also the case that quite a lot of old people put large sums of cash in non-bank places to avoid taxes both for themeselves and relatives. I am quite sure when this hidden money gets stolen they do not inform the police.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Osaka reports record infections, as gov't eyes tougher measures for Aichi See in context

On a side note, I was surprised to see Dr. Fauci saying that even now that he has the vaccine he won't eat in a restaurant, go to a movie, or get onto an airplane. Not sure if that means forever, or until more people get vaccinated. But I thought the point of the vaccine was to allow us to return to some sort of normality.

The vaccine is one of the best measures to cut down on infections and transmissions, but it's not 100% effective.

Plus vaccines kind of work on a principle of needing enough of the population to be vaccinated that it stops spread enough for it not to be a problem.

Eg: If you're the only vaccinated guy in a room of 100 sick people, it'll help, but you're not guaranteed to be safe.

But if you're the only un-vaccinated guy in a room of 100 vaccinated people, you're much more likely to be safe.

So Fauci may be waiting until the vaccination rates are high enough, or he may be employing additional measures to reduce risk. (Swiss cheese effect).

If the vaccine is effective then it may allow us to return to some form of normality, but not immediately and not completely. There will still need to be additional measures or changes... at least for a while.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Posted in: Tokyo reports 570 coronavirus cases; 918 in Osaka See in context

is it a pandemic with so few with severe symptoms?

3 Million deaths worldwide, spread across many countries? Yeah, probably...

US peaked at about 6k deaths a day (that's 2x 9/11s a day). Brasil currently 4k deaths a day. UK peaked at about 1.2k deaths a day.

Has Japan majorly lucked out so far? Yep, though it's not totally clear why. But there is clearly potential for things to get out of hand quickly.

Variants seem to be getting more virulent, whereas people are developing immunity and doctors are getting better at treating it.

But if the vaccines don't cut off the spread there's always the risk that a variant is going to make things go south rapidly.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Posted in: Restaurant, bar owners worry about tighter COVID-19 steps See in context

I've expressed frustration in the past that bar/restaurant owners are getting a lot more support than most other businesses and seem to be the only industry that the government even recognizes.

That said, some of them are suffering and it's not their fault that the government seems unable to make a logical and fair subsidy system. Some of them are raking in far more money now than they ever made from being open, yet other ones are going bankrupt and losing huge amounts, because the subsidy system makes no sense.

On the other hand, dumb as it sounds, the 8pm thing does actually seem to be working - however temporarily.

But if they don't get their butts in gear with the vaccinations, it's just going to be a never ending loop of month long 8pm curfews, numbers rebounding, month long 8pm curfews, etc..

It's kinda unbelievable that non of these bar owners said something along the lines of 'I just wish they'd hurry up with the vaccinations that could save our businesses and lives!'

My Suggestion: Give GoToTravel & GoToEat vouchers to everyone when they get vaccinated. Then they can go out and support these businesses, and not cause a rebound.

Oh, and make the current support based on a combination of 'number of staff employed' and 'income lost since 2019'.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Gov't to release Fukushima nuclear plant water into sea despite fishermen's objection See in context

https://www.radioactivity.eu.com/site/pages/Tritium.htm#:~:text=Tritium%20is%20a%20beta%2Demitting,proton%20and%20only%20one%20neutron).

This article says drinking 2 litres a day for a year is equivalent to two weeks natural exposure in France. I would therefore suggest the politians could consume it themselves. Maybe they could make a special brand of Whiskey from the water.

What is missing from this article is actual levels of tritium in those tanks, how much it needs to be watered down, how long is it going to take to pour it all into the sea and how much more water from the plants is being added each day.

When people claim nuclea power is safe they always state that accidents are rare. Rare they may be but when they happen the clear up and cost is massive. Plus I was in the UK when the Chernobyl cloud came over and I was in Japan when the initial disaster happened. So I feel for such rare events I have been exposed twice. I also lived close to two nuclea plants in England that had leak accidents and ended up being re-named and shut down.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: Australia doubles Pfizer vaccine order as AstraZeneca clotting worries upend rollout See in context

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/977006/COVID-19_vaccine_AstraZeneca_analysis_print.pdf

This is the link to the Yellow Card system in the UK. In total so far 472 fatalities. They may or may not be connected to other condition. Take into account that 20 million doses have been given so far in the UK. Do the maths and think how many deaths have been avoided in a country that is logging the total deaths in the 100,000's.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Tokyo reports 545 coronavirus cases; Osaka logs 905 See in context

@Derek Grebe

https://www.fukushihoken.metro.tokyo.lg.jp/index.files/030408sokuhou.pdf

I have no idea from this form how they collate the data. It appears the amount of tests a day has zero connection the the amount of people positives. They appear to be different time lines. I would hope JT would do some digging and see if they can get a more understandable data source.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Posted in: United Airlines prepares to shake up white, male-dominated pilot population See in context

Oh no! Not women again!

This is going to scare some regular commenters. You know they aren't comfortable with the idea of women.

-12 ( +5 / -17 )

Posted in: A new 'Kung Fu' debuts at a crucial time for Asian Americans See in context

Women again! Sheesh!

I'm very confused by all these people who seem to get upset at the very idea of women existing.

That said, I'm personally not so interested in the idea of it being set in the modern day. There are already loads of tv shows set in the modern day with characters who can do martial arts. What I always liked about the original was the juxtaposition of the Kung Fu guy with the Cowboy genre and archetypes.

I kinda wish they'd gone with that time frame along with the female main character.

I guess kids these days probably aren't so into Western stuff though.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Posted in: Vaccine passports are latest flash point in COVID politics See in context

@wobot.

A better link would have been: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/04/03/time-discussion-covid-certification/

Scroll down to the comments and see what kind of reaction he got. Although as it is behind a semi-paid wall you will need to have a log-in. Remember Whitty provides info. and Gove sets pollicy. Also remember that children are given the flu jab not because they need it but because they are spreaders.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Vaccine passports are latest flash point in COVID politics See in context

Its all a McGuffin to encourage people to have the vaccine.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Foreign firms face tough choices over Myanmar unrest See in context

It doesn't seem like a hard choice to me. If you have any morals at all.

That said, maybe what they should all do is stop paying taxes to the military. UN or US/EU sanctions could require them to do just that, while also giving them some cover in doing so.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: MUFG, Sumitomo face climate votes at shareholder meetimgs as activism grows See in context

If you are going to be very reductionist then you could claim almost all activism is 'virtue signalling'.

But without such activism a lot of things we take for granted in the modern world might never have come to pass.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Osaka governor sounds alarm as COVID-19 infections exceed Tokyo's See in context

It's lucky we've had 2-3 months of vaccinations to get ahead of this, so we can avoid another wave and another state of emergency!

... oh, wait...

12 ( +12 / -0 )

Posted in: Crowds line routes in Tochigi as Olympic torch arrives in Kanto region See in context

Well, seems like I was wrong when I thought no one would be interested in watching the torch relay... I forgot that people will turn out in force for any event here. ;-)

Spectators lined routes in Ashikaga and Tochigi cities while officials repeatedly called out warnings to them to maintain social distancing as a precaution against the coronavirus. 

A van also went ahead of runners reminding people to clap but not cheer or yell out. Most spectators wore masks.

God, sounds horrible. I love the way you get shouted at by loudspeakers and loudhailers all the time.

Jeez, I'm in a negative mood today... sorry.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Naomi Osaka raises voice against anti-Asian hate crimes See in context

Wow. The alt-right are out in force in the comments today!

Apparently speaking out against racism is a terrible thing now, because it highlights the racism and that apparently creates division? Or something? I find the logic hard to follow tbh.

Then again, there seem to be a large number of people who will attack Naomi Osaka no matter what she says or does... I wonder why?

ducks the incoming downvote storm

-6 ( +9 / -15 )

Posted in: From April, all price tags in Japan must reflect final cost with sales tax included See in context

Thank god!

It used to be this way until the sales tax went up to 8%, then every shop started doing their own thing, and some shops included tax and others didn't, or they'd show both, but most would put the 'with tax' number in very small text and the 'without tax' number in big text.

It became a confusing mess.

I read elsewhere that Uniqlo actually intends to keep their base price (non-taxed) for most items as the full tax price starting April 1, and just eat the price difference themself.

This is how a lot of business works. It's why products are priced at $199 and 199gbp and 199 euros despite the company making different amounts of profit on each. It's also why prices didn't (immediately) increase last time the sales tax increased in the UK, for example.

I'm not sure quite why, but it seems much more common for Japanese shops to pass on cost increases directly and immediately to customers. There will be a typhoon in Hokkaido and the next day the price of carrots will have gone up dramatically. Most countries I've lived in the stores will maintain the standard price and absorb the change in their profits... in the short term at least.

Then again, Tokyo supermarkets have the weird strategy of changing their prices on almost every product almost every single day, so that no one has any idea what the actual price should be. (This is a deliberate strategy to confuse consumers btw), whereas overseas stores seem to maintain a fixed price for most products.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Fukushima tries to update image with new multilingual website See in context

Which image?

The pretty image of the castle, I guess? Though it's the first time I've seen it so I can't say it's getting old.

It's time to update Fukushima in your mind!

Ok. Downloading mind update patch v3.17

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: 47 anaphylaxis cases reported in Japan after 580,000 Pfizer vaccine shots See in context

Quick suggestion: Go To Vaccine

Everyone who gets vaccinated gets 10,000 yen in Go To Eat coupons and a 50% off Go To Travel coupon, stamped with the date of their vaccination and valid for use from 10 days after that date.

Watch the fear and skepticism evaporate as people and tv shows scramble all over themselves to get coupons, I mean vaccinated.

Boost the economy, but without as much risk of spreading disease, reward those who are considerate of others rather than rewarding the selfish, boost vaccination rates. Plus the government might develop more of a sense of urgency if it was about giving money to their pet industries.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: Tokyo Olympic torch relay providing cultural showcase amid pandemic See in context

Who will be watching this? Has anyone here ever watched any of the torch relay in any other country, other than maybe the start and the finish?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: 47 anaphylaxis cases reported in Japan after 580,000 Pfizer vaccine shots See in context

So in the one month since they started vaccinations, over 1,500 people have died from Covid, but 47 (or probably less) people have had a rash or a fever from the Vaccine? Ooooh! the vaccine must be more risky!

???

Also, I don't think I've read any news stories about doctors or health workers in Japan dying from Covid. Yet over 65s make up almost 90% of the deaths... but it'll be at least another month before they even start vaccinating over 65s?

And in one month they've managed less vaccinations than a single day in the UK?

Even if the vaccines were available to all, Japanese people aren't dumb, I doubt most would take it. Apart from 1 person, all the Japanese people I know are skeptical of the jab and would not take it immediately. Including people in the medical community. Good for them.

You make two statements that seem to be directly contradictory.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Posted in: LGBT groups want equality law in Japan before Tokyo Olympics See in context

It's not rubbish.

If equality means being allowed to marry the person you love that means no two people (or more) who love each other and request a marriage certificate should be denied that right.

It is rubbish and you know it.

Equality doesn't mean 'no two people (or more) who love each other and request a marriage certificate should be denied that right.', it means the laws and opportunities should be applied equally to all.

Allowing women to have a driving license doesn't mean allowing blind people to have a driving license.

Even if it was as you say, I still don't get what your issue is. Allowing LGBT+ people to get married is surely a step closer to equality than the current situation. It's a step closer to your ideal of allowing fathers to marry their sons or whatever you are hoping for.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Posted in: Case involving skateboarder defacing historical bridge sent to prosecutors See in context

Seems like a stern warning would have sufficed.

There have been a couple of stories recently about police sending very minor cases to prosecutors, whereas other stories have been about very lenient sentences for cases that'd I'd consider much more serious.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Experts warn COVID-19 rebound could exceed 'third wave' in Tokyo See in context

Good chance to remind everyone that fewer deaths were registered in Japan in 2020 than were in 2019, 2018 or 2017.

Experts should point to statistics and data, and not resort to fear mongering.

Statistically, the first wave and second wave did not cause excess deaths in Japan.

This is true, in Japan at least, but it doesn't mean that the first and second wave caused no deaths.

Due to the social distancing those numbers are much lower than they could have been, and other deaths have been dramatically reduced.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: Mie becomes 1st prefecture to ban outing of sexual minorities See in context

This law - or mandate - or whatever it is should apply to all, regardless of their sexual orientation, or whether they are male or female. To give special privileges to one group but not to another sounds a lot like discrimination.

So your argument is that protecting LGBT people from being outed is discrimination because the rule doesn't also protect straight people from being outed as straight? Seriously?! Ok....

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Posted in: Mie becomes 1st prefecture to ban outing of sexual minorities See in context

Does this mean a man like me can enter a woman's space and nobody is allowed to point out the fact that I'm a man?

My question may seem absurd but it's an honest question about the new law.

Why do you feel the need to troll each and every thread related to sexuality, women, etc... with irrelevant questions and strawman arguments?

If you have nothing constructive to say or no interest in the topic at hand then why not just say nothing?

Nothing in this rule is targeting you or going to have any impact on your life whatsoever.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Posted in: Tama schools in Tokyo distributing free feminine hygiene products to students See in context

Hey, I've got an idea! Instead of overengineering and overcomplicating things, shouldn't be such basic products taxed less than now? It's how it works in many countries, I don't see a reason why it couldn't work here as well.

Agreed. I think there is a lower basic sales tax rate for food and stuff now, though I don't know if it includes sanitary products. The problem is it's only 8% vs 10% so it hardly makes any difference.

I always felt that when they raised the sales tax to 10% they should have cut the basic rate on essentials to either 5% or preferably 0%. Alternatively they could have done that in response to Covid.

It would have helped with a lot of issues, including this one.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

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