Japan Today

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Posted in: New virus cases in Tokyo drop to 5; none reported in Osaka See in context

5/14 1,035 (people tested), 30 (positive)

5/13 887 (people tested), 30 (positive)

5/12 1,169 (people tested), 36 (positive)

5/11 1,165 (people tested), 49 (positive)

These numbers speak for themselves. An average of 2 to 4% of people being tested have symptoms. Very crude extrapolation - 372 new infections / day at 3%.

With so many people going untested, I do not see how the number of cases can actually be decreasing. The number of tests being performed is obviously being kept low to artificially lower the number of reported infections.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Posted in: Mysterious blood clots are COVID-19's latest lethal surprise See in context

Well that's just fantastic news...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Low-tech Japan challenged in working from home amid pandemic See in context

How could Japan be expected to work from home? It has the lowest PC literacy rate of all developed nations. Even if the dogmatic culture of "Must be at work" was not an issue in Japan, only a small percentage of workers are tech-savvy enough to configure their laptops to connect to their company VPN, hold teleconferences etc.

This pandemic is a wakeup call for sure.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Apple rolls out cheaper iPhone See in context


Agree with Ebisen, for the money my Galaxy S9+ provides a way better experience. I miss some things from the iPhone - Japanese language support is horrible compared to the iPhones..But the functionality of almost everything else is superior and at less than half the purchase price for a comparable iPhone model when it was new.

One thing Apple beats Samsung at is customer support - when something on an iPad or iPhone breaks due to manufacture defect or design flaw, Apple will usually own up to it with a bit of haggling. Samsung's customer support is beyond useless - to the point that I'll probably go back to iPhone for my next device.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

Posted in: IMF: Global economy will suffer worst year since Depression See in context

Failure to understand investment is the fastest way to stay poor.

Investment is what drives the entire world. Does not matter if it's stocks, real estate, or bubble gum. Someone's got to put capital into something to make a product available to the public on a large scale - the stock market is the fastest and one of the most reliable ways to do that. When you have a good company with good products and good management, the company's worth goes up - regardless of what its stock price is doing - there's no tether holding the two together.

Companies that were profitable, had good products and good management will not suddenly cease to have those qualities because of COVID. The best of the bunch will have ample cash on hand or credit to weather this storm. When the economy begins to pick up again, so will their stock prices. Buy while Joe Shlob is panic-selling because someone on TV told him to. Just make sure you're buying the right things. Warren Buffet's advice is golden, but his approach is extremely long term. Peter Lynch has very similar advice applicable to shorter timescales - 3-10 years more often than not.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: IMF: Global economy will suffer worst year since Depression See in context

And despite the economic havoc currently happening around us, a quick check of just about any stock index will quickly show you that compared to the great depression, we're not doing that bad.

Agree with GS, the time to buy is times like these. Just do your research diligently, don't throw money around thinking it will magically grow..!

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Posted in: Japanese lawmaker's secretary contracts coronavirus See in context

With the average age of these politicians, COVID could potentially wipe out 15% of the top levels of the Japanese government.

You'd think they would take lethal threats a little more seriously.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Back to school See in context

Seems quite outrageous to be holding ceremonies like this. Schools are already a bad enough place as far as transmission of viruses is concerned, and -now- of all times? When the entire world is locked down trying to stop the spread? You put children into ranks and files?

Japan.... Yeesh..

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Increasingly desperate single women bear brunt of economic inequality See in context

Women who are willing to become technically and business savvy are able to succeed. There are not many famous female CEO's in Japan, but there are tens of thousands of successful businesswomen who run their own small and medium sized businesses.

The majority of young women I've spoken with in Japan are completely uninterested in business and technology.

How do they expect to get ahead in life if they have no in-demand skills? Playing puzzle dragons on your phone won't cut it.

Schools should make computer literacy mandatory, and young generations need a smartphone detox, they can't do anything other than swipe away at their glass screens.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Posted in: Carnage on Wall Street, but some companies thrive or recover See in context

Mr Market strikes again

the real value of these companies hasn't changed a penny just because of a virus. Well, maybe those involved in virus research may be gaining in actual value.

stop speculating like idiots and this volatility disappears overnight. then again, keep at it so brighter folks can capitalize on the idiocy of dumping perfectly good stocks, and buy good but overvalued stocks at less inflated prices.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan Inc wary about wage hikes as Abenomics sputters See in context

We've now got kids finishing up grade school who weren't even born when Bozo the LDP Clown started making all his economic promises.

How long does it take to realize he's full of crap and that the nation has been voting wrong all this time?

Yeesh Japan. Think harder. Vote smarter.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Boeing's 777X jetliner successfully completes maiden flight See in context

The 777 is without a doubt one of the best airplanes ever built, but Airbus gained a lot of ground with the A350. I hope that the 777X will meet all of its performance targets right off the bat. From a pilot's perspective it is a fantastic airplane to fly. Not too shabby as a passenger, either.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: 1 dead, 3 injured after light car collides with bus in Chiba Pref See in context

While everyone is arguing about the safety of kei cars you might want to consider that the driver was apparently not wearing a seatbelt, was probably speeding, and collided head on with a BUS.

I don't care what you're driving, if you collide head on with a bus at any kind of decent speed, your odds of walking away unharmed are not good.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Skymark Airlines still using Windows XP See in context

Many banks still use code written in the 70's or early 80's.

Plenty of servers are running ancient distributions of some form of unix or very old linux.

If it's working, and if a better solution hasn't been made, why risk an upgrade?

Yes there are security risks, but if the devices running old software are not connected to the internet and are physically secure from tampering by random citizens, ancient servers and software can run for decades without issue and still serve their purposes well.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: Hot water: Pressure to move Olympic open-water venue from Tokyo Bay See in context

what a circus.

it's embarrassing how Japanese politicians show their corrupt nature and ineptitude to the foreign media through their handling of the Tokyo Olympics.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: Brazilian man sues Japanese gov't for injuries at immigration center See in context

You will find the vast majority of people in these facilities are not illegal overstayers.

The Japanese government has set up the system so that if you are ever charged with anything, you are jailed by the police and held in police custody until a final judicial decision is made. Whether you are found innocent or guilty, it does not matter - if you are in police custody and your visa expires, you are deemed an overstayer and even if you are judged innocent of whatever you've been charged with, you will be sent to an immigration camp and forcibly deported.

I always find the comments on incidents like these to be incredibly naive. Japan is the worst of the developed nations when it comes to things like this. The policies are outright fascist in nature. If you are a foreigner in Japan accused of any kind of violation of law, you had better watch out. You have absolutely no rights, and there is basically guaranteed double jeopardy in place to ensure that foreigners caught up in the police net are expelled from the country, innocent or not.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Abe's mission unaccomplished: Pushing to revise Japan's pacifist charter See in context

abe needs to just disappear. he's the biggest failure Japan has experienced in decades. clown pm, clown politics. ridiculous small man bent on sending what little of his remaining young population is left into Chinese machine gun fire.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Posted in: Nissan names new finance chief; some managers to leave in latest shake-up See in context

too late. I'll never buy a Nissan vehicle again after the outrageous behavior of the company over the past two years.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan's biggest opposition party shuns merger with rival ahead of election See in context

Yet another party merger designed from the beginning to destroy actual opposition from having a voice in politics.

Japan is effectively a dictatorship. How many times have we seen this scenario play out with Abe in power?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan fares well in U.S. report on human trafficking See in context

lol, kabukicho, need anyone say more

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: New law states gov't responsible for teaching Japanese to foreigners See in context

you know what the funny thing is.

the government has been responsible for ensuring that the population be instructed in english for 60+ years now yet almost nobody can.

now we have this enormous influx of workers from the philippines who - wouldn't you know it - all speak english.

oh japan, if only you weren't so incompetent sometimes.

i'm not saying that english should be the default language to use for these people as obviously, it's japan so they should learn japanese, but you know, sometimes being able to communicate using the most common language on earth just makes things easier.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Posted in: Self-Defense Force chopper makes crash landing in Tokyo; crew unharmed See in context

How so? I thought helis were designed to do this sort of thing?

helicopters can hover, but hovering with tailwinds is generally considered undesirable. hovering with tailwinds while surrounded by buildings or other obstacles is considered very dangerous.

when you have good forward airspeed in a helicopter, your rotor disc acts sort of like a giant wing, meaning you can effectively glide to safety even if the engine croaks. at the very end of the glide you're supposed to pull collective, which basically makes the rotor blades bite more into the air, giving more lift. when it's done properly it lets you land softly in a forward sliding manner. when it's done badly it looks like the photo in this article. this is called an autorotation.

my beef with them in tachikawa is that they routinely bust safety speeds and altitudes. when the helicopter crosses a certain line (going too slowly) it becomes impossible to successfully autorotate. you will end up like the chopper in the photo in a good case, or you will smash the ground and die in the worst case, but there is no chance of a happy autorotation once into this regime of flight - it's called the dead man's curve. there are certain altitude parameters which factor into this as well. the tachikawa guys can be seen flying very low on occasion and just hovering around needlessly.

hovers are a risk-reward tradeoff. they can be done, yes, but probably shouldn't be done unless there's a need to do one, and if you are doing one, it should be done with the nose into the wind whenever possible. doing otherwise is just disregarding safety protocol and eventually it will catch up with the pilots who are doing it.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Self-Defense Force chopper makes crash landing in Tokyo; crew unharmed See in context

This came down not far from my apartment. I always wondered when one of them was going to have a problem and bite the dust. Glad the crew is OK. What an awful autorotation though.

I do not like how low and slow some of these guys get when doing circuits around Tachikawa over built up residential areas. As this photograph clearly shows, he did not have enough speed to perform a good autorotation (Or perhaps his technique was bad). I've seen some of these guys hovering over built up areas with a tailwind, and others cruising around at 20 or 30 knots in calm winds at very low altitudes, both total no-no's in helicopters.

I've complained about Tokyo's bad air planning for years. It's not an issue of noise, in flying, speed and altitude are life. When you start puttering around at 40 knots and 500 feet like these guys do when practicing circuits in Tachikawa, eventually someone's going to have an engine failure and end up wiping out a cheaply built apartment building. They've got aircraft doing approaches over Shibuya now too to ease congestion at Haneda. It is only a matter of time before some clown forgets his IFR, or worse, can't remember how to fly without the autopilot and buries the plane into a tall building there.

JSDF and the aviation authorities in general need to implement mandatory minimum speed and altitude restrictions for flights over the city. The helicopter training area has a landing strip large enough for small aircraft, it's more than enough for them to slow from any speed the Hueys can achieve, and descend from a safer altitude before reaching the end of the strip. If they want to do dead man's curve practice they need to make sure they're doing it over the base or anywhere else where a failed attempt will hurt people on the ground.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Nearly 50% of Japan's singles have no dating prospects: gov't survey See in context

In other news, papakatsu, a word women are using to replace words like enkou and prostitution, has risen to a meteoric high.

Nah, more convenient to ignore that little statistic, and downvote it to oblivion.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: S Korean parliament speaker apologizes for remarks on Japan emperor See in context

So this is not what they call a sincere apology.

so he'd fit right in with the japanese cabinet

perhaps these two nations have more in common than the politicians think they do.

on a more serious note i think it's quite sad that the positive relations korea and japan were building were destroyed by abe the clown. i remember how vibrant shin-okubo was becoming with korean culture and the huge boom in popularity anything korean was having around tokyo. young people from both countries were coming and going in record numbers as students. KARA was invited to be on the new years' kohaku music show.

one japanese election later and that progress and goodwill was all wiped out, all for what? KARA was removed from kohaku, korean shops closed up everywhere and people on both sides became bitter and petty.

what a waste, and the blame is squarely on the worst prime minister japan's had since tojo. they had finally started moving past the BS until his ugly mug showed up.

-15 ( +0 / -15 )

Posted in: Woman sues Japanese gov't for DNA data kept even after end of probe See in context

i am glad that more and more, the reality that is the police state which has engulfed Japan is becoming more prominent in the media.

police in Japan can arrest you for -anything- and the moment they do, you will disappear for weeks or months without a trace. they'll take your DNA if you look for your lost pet!

this is not a rare case - it has been happening frequently, but hasn't been well reported.

police need their powers reigned in, they have got to be hobbled. they have unlimited power now and the justice system only empowers them more with the unlimited detention periods and unsupervised interrogations.

14 ( +17 / -3 )

Posted in: Japan's detention center gives foreign media a look See in context

Does anyone else get the feeling that the cell in the photo is brand new or recently renovated? It does not look like it has ever been lived in, no usual"wear and tear".

They're putting on a dog and pony show for the media. Most detention centers in Japan keep a special cell or even an entire wing of their facilities unused precisely for the purposes of showing guests around that would otherwise see what the actual conditions are inside.

None of them look like this. They're filthy from floor to ceiling, the tatami are crawling with insects and are generally completely trashed from years and years of use without replacement.

Never trust anything the ministry of justice has released to the media - while it may look alright on the surface, you're being given the ol' Iraqi Information Minister treatment.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

Posted in: Labor minister opposes banning female dress codes with high heels See in context

I'd be more inclined to care about these remarks if Japan had not yet again voted for an LDP government.

you voted for him, you have to listen to his nonsense.

stupid games stupid prizes etc.

if you hadn't voted LDP this clown and half the rest of the cabinet would be waving you through traffic at a construction site by now.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Posted in: Jetstar Japan to cancel 70 flights in June due to pilot shortage See in context

possibly both, airline crews (pilots) don't have holiday hours like normal people. they're required by law not to work over a certain amount of hours per month, and there is specific mandatory rest requirements and rest periods built into the law.

due to the weird nature of this year's special Golden week holidays, it's likely that they weren't able to have every pilot meet the mandatory crew rest hours and still be available to fly. so they're taking it off all at once in a group.

I wonder which flights are going to be cut. typically if an airline can cut unprofitable flights, a move like this can save them. hundreds of thousands of dollars a day. if they simply cancel a normally empty but expensive to operate run, they save all costs on the trip both ways minus some. penalties paid to the regulator and token reimbursement to specific customers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Defendant in Sagamihara murder case acquitted See in context

I think the judge did his job properly, which is rare in japan

the prosecution is supposed to prove beyond any doubt that the defendant is the only one who could have committed the crime.

having those two pieces of evidence places him at or near the scene but do not prove that he was the killer.

the prosecution really dropped the ball here, but is it any surprise? they're all used to kangaroo courts where every suspect is guilty no matter what. if he had done his job properly this guy probably would have been convicted.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

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