Sal Affist comments

Posted in: 2 Americans who helped in Ghosn's escape to be turned over to Japan See in context

Michael Taylor may have been in the Special Forces, but he will be vulnerable to interrogations because of his concern for his son Peter. Michael may be willing to spend years behind bars but he will do or say whatever he can to get his son out of the box that Michael put them both in.

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Posted in: Welcome back: Optimism abounds as MLB's spring includes fans See in context

Oh, right, it was Florida. THAT explains it.

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Posted in: Welcome back: Optimism abounds as MLB's spring includes fans See in context

Not a single mask in the picture of all the people at the game in Arizona. I don't know whether to be envious or alarmed!

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Posted in: Australian PM stands by minister accused of rape See in context

We are not human lie detectors. This will never be proven one way or the other. Many women in other countries have come forward to accuse powerful men of sex crimes years later (such as Mr. Trump, Mr. Biden, Judge Kavanaugh, Judge Roy Moore, and recently Governor Cuomo in New York.) I am sure there must be such hidden accusations against Japanese politicians waiting to come out. Some claims may be true, and then there are claims by emotionally disturbed persons seeking something - perhaps 15 minutes of fame or a quiet Stormy Daniels-sized payoff. When Justin Bieber was still a minor, some crazy woman filed a paternity suit claiming she sneaked backstage and had sex with him in a closet and he impregnated her. After a week of bizarre news coverage and then being told his client could face statutory rape claims, the paternity suit lawyer abruptly withdrew his representation and the claim died and went away. I will always reserve judgment until there has been an adjudication (Bill Cosby for sexual assaults, Hunter Biden for paternity tests).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Panasonic begins crowdfunding for new companion robot NICOBO See in context

It sounds like a more advanced (and more expensive) version of a tamagotchi, that will hold someone's attention for a month at most, and then collect dust somewhere until it is taken out with the rubbish.

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Posted in: 3 men arrested over robbery, assault, kidnapping See in context

Thirteen months later, there is little chance that any of the 20 million yen and precious metals are recoverable.

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Posted in: 65-year-old man arrested over fatal stabbing of woman at his apartment See in context

"fed up with her attitude."

She probably wasn't giving him enough of her hard-earned funds from her part-time job, and he got tired of her refusals.

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Posted in: Australian PM's defining week ends in bruising manner See in context

Ms. Reynolds will be dropped in order to minimize the damage.

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Posted in: JAL to slash hiring of new graduates by 90% in 2022 See in context

I hope that no one has had an offer revoked. Most graduates are supposed to start work in April. If they lose a offer at this point, there will be horrible prospects to get hired anywhere else. They may wind up becoming "freeters".

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Posted in: A mister no more: Mr Potato Head goes gender neutral See in context

@Yoshisan88, you are correct, it was just a PR stunt. Hasbro was trolling everyone, they have updated the news release to say that Mr. Potato Head and Mrs. Potato Head will be sold in separate boxes. They sure got a lot of worldwide attention from this.

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Posted in: Vaccines 'encouraged' but not compulsory for athletes at Tokyo Olympics: Coates See in context

Okay, if they aren't vaccinated then make them all do a strict quarantine similar to the one imposed at the Australian Open.

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Posted in: Big Three are 'cyborgs of tennis', says beaten Medvedev See in context

Yes, it is too bad that Nishikori and Medvedev had to come of age while the cyborg terminators were ruling the courts. Injuries and age will catch up to the cyborgs soon, but there will only be a few available championships left in their wake before Nishikori and Medvedev also face their own retirements.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Mariners president Mather apologizes for comments, including criticism of Iwakuma's English See in context

People do not want to work for leaders who denigrate them. After reading these comments, I realized there is a reason the Mariners are projected to have a 0.0% chance of even making the playoffs this year.

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Posted in: Workers fear squeeze from green energy transition See in context

Note to Poland: China is building many more coal-fired power plants because they are not pledging to be carbon-neutral until 2060 (if you can even believe that.) Polish coal miners have 39 more years to shovel coal - they will just have to ship it a little farther than right now.

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Posted in: 12 Japan firms to end business deals involving Uyghur forced labor See in context

Will the Western companies and brands like Apple, Nike and NBA follow suit? Or just expand operations into the void left by the Japanese firms?

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Posted in: Man arrested over sexual assault of woman in alley See in context

Fuchu is a very peaceful place, except around the boat-racing and horse-racing facilities, which should be avoided in the evenings after races (due to large numbers of drunk and angry men who've lost way too much money.) Especially on Saturday nights, as January 16th was. Having seen these kind of creeps there late at night, I wonder at the truthfulness of Mr. Wada's excuse.

It is my hope that the streets will be safe again after this perpetrator's apprehension, and that the police examine whether there are any other similar reports in the area over the last few years. I am strongly convinced this wasn't Mr. Wada's first attempt at this kind of crime.

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Posted in: 3 arrested over smuggling of drugs hidden in Snow White dwarf dolls See in context

But the daughters have denied the allegations, saying they had no knowledge of the contents, the police added.

The daughters may not have known. Drug mules often use innocent family members as a screen to appear more 'normal' and therefore attract less attention from authorities.

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Posted in: Canada attempts to address racial disparity in criminal justice system See in context

It may be okay to end mandatory minimum sentences for certain drug crimes, but they really need to keep the mandatory minimum sentences for firearm crimes. There have to be deterrents for use of firearms while committing crimes.

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Posted in: Rich nations stockpiling a billion more COVID-19 shots than needed: report See in context

Americans are the most generous people on the planet. I am confident Mr. Biden's administration will give away all the excess doses as soon as they have finished vaccinating all the Americans who want one.

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Posted in: Canada vows to be next country to go after Facebook to pay for news See in context

FB benefited from the perception of being a one-stop shop - check your posts and likes, peruse the news FB knows you are interested in, examine a few sales for items you recently browsed or purchased. I prefer to actually get my news by visiting multiple websites and not logging in; the sites still get a fee for my eyeballs viewing adjacent ads when I click on a story, and those will fund continuing efforts at journalism.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to receive 2nd shipment of Pfizer vaccine on Sunday See in context

Many municipalities plan to set up large-scale vaccination sites in auditoriums and gymnasiums to quickly and efficiently inoculate residents.

Do these municipalities really have the super-low temperature storage facilities for the Pfizer vaccine? The Moderna vaccine is more convenient because it does not need the super-low temperatures but rather just a significantly-low temperature. I have to wonder why Japan went with the one harder to maintain.

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Posted in: U.S. Supreme Court allows extradition to Japan of Ghosn escape aides See in context

These Americans probably spent their entire compensation from Mr. Ghosn on their legal efforts to fight extradition. They will be broke and unable to afford attorneys for their Japanese legal travails, once the Taylors arrive in Japan.

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Posted in: Autoworkers face uncertain future in an era of electric cars See in context

As the Westernized countries eliminate the internal combustion engine, the reduced demand for petroleum products will lower the global price and allow Third World countries' economies to benefit. GM should consider continuing to produce ICEs for export to developing countries, which would solve their union members' stated concerns.

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Posted in: Oita woman loses lawsuit and pays damages without ever knowing she’d been sued See in context

Are these not crimes in Japan?

(1) filing a false paper with the court; and then

(2) lying to the court when questioned about it.

Doing this with the intent to perpetrate a fraudulent suit would either be a third crime or an aggravating factor for the first two offenses.

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Posted in: Diamonds forecast to regain pre-pandemic sparkle in 2022-2024 See in context

But were there discounts during the slump, to clear inventory? I don't think so. Mrs. Affist certainly would have let me know if there had been.

Unlike other high-dollar items (cars with model years, phones and computers, and luxury fashion), diamonds aren't going to grow old and lose value because of the passage of time. The merchants are able to keep their inventory and hope for better days, rather than unload aging wares.

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Posted in: Ex-captain of U.S. sub apologizes for Ehime Maru collision on 20th anniversary See in context

Anniversaries like these are important, not only to grieve the dead but also to ask whether any changes in procedures have been made that would prevent this from ever recurring, or changes in how these allied nations resolve such incidents.

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Posted in: Driver on Seibu Railway train falls asleep while at controls See in context

Driver fatigue is a factor in most train crashes all over the world. So many people were killed in the heyday of American trains that they instituted reforms and severe sanctions regarding time on-the-clock and mandatory rest time before the next duty shift. Now train engineers (drivers) will stop their trains in the middle of a route if they exceed their shift, and the railway must find a way to get replacement engineers out to the engines.

It is still a reported problem for the most junior personnel, as train crews are "called" based on seniority. A young man in his 20's like this one would get the late shift, and would be called again eight hours later, and expected to have accomplished all life tasks (bathing, eating, sleeping, uniform laundering) in that short time period. It may be similar in Japan - the young man finished a shift on the last train at 1 a.m., and then was expected to drive again on the first train at 5 a.m. One of the J-TV shows recently took the TV cameras into a resting room for the drivers, located at the train yard, so they would not have to return all the way to their homes when facing a short turnaround.

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Posted in: Tokyo reports 491 new coronavirus cases; nationwide tally 1,885 See in context

1621 tests on a Sunday (2/7). Sandy is correct. They do not authorize routine or contact-tracing tests on Sundays. Expect tomorrow's numbers to be significantly higher, because they will have Monday's test results.

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Posted in: Fewer people to get Pfizer vaccine in Japan due to syringe shortage See in context

So if there is a shortage of specialty syringes, reuse them on members of the same family. I have seen this done in southern Hemisphere medical clinics. The risk of hepatitis and other diseases from reusing syringes is minimized if the family unit shares the needle.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Americans take to 'buy now, pay later' shopping during pandemic, but can they afford it? See in context

By not charging interest, the non-US firms can avoid many of the American banking laws. It almost seems like these companies' business model includes expecting a decent percentage of missed payments and gaining the resulting windfalls from the imposed penalties.

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