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sighclops comments

Posted in: Australian prime minister explains why he vetoed Rudd's bid for top U.N. job See in context

Honestly - the Left love harping on about Abbott but the delightful Rudd-Gillard duo did so much damage to the Australian economy that'll it'll be sinking in debt for the next 20-30 years. Absolute trainwreck. Labour - much like the Greens - haven't seen good fiscal policy in quite sometime. Wouldn't know it if it hit them.

Rudd is bad news.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Posted in: Shining for Rio See in context

@kawabegawa198

Anybody besides me not interested in the Olympics one bit?

You're definitely not alone. With everyone on the gear, what's there to be interested in?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Posted in: Tokyo begins taxi service trial with starting fares of 410 yen See in context

Meanwhile, the rest of the world zooms ahead with ride-sharing services.

@shiboritate

Why not 400 yen? So if I have a 500en-dama I have to receive 5 or 9 coins in return for the shortest fare? Same as the scheme to increase one-coin fares to 510 on certain reserved-seat train fares to cover Abe's disastrous consumption tax hike.

Because your propsal is far too straightforward & logical for an Old Boys' industry like the taxi business.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Posted in: Godzilla comes back to Japan, in ways fresh and familiar See in context

A Japanese-American special envoy, played impudently by Satomi Ishihara

Japan's jimusho system in full swing. How many other movies / dramas / commercials has she been in this year? It's such a joke. Up next - debut album!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: The gang's all here See in context

Gang is definitely the right word here.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: Why do media put so much pressure on athletes to win gold at Olympics, for example, Japan with its judoka, South Korea (speedskating), Australia (swimming), Brazil (soccer), and so on, and then treat See in context

Two reasons: Media has to milk it for all its worth & its the taxpayer funding that gets the athletes to the Olympics - not to mention all the other associated costs (training, facilities etc.). Australia alone has put $350m into its Rio programme alone!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: The government has failed to learn lessons from the past by repeating policies with no freshness while accumulating debts. See in context

You know what they say - you can't teach an old dog new tricks. Japan is one giant Old Boys' Club!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: What do you think of Japan's health insurance system? See in context

@smartacus

I think it is excellent and very affordable. But I still don't understand why some clinics (who seem to cater to rich expats) don't accept Japanese national health insurance.

That one's easy. No paper trail. Most of those clinics are purely cash businesses. In essence, they charge what they like. They even have seminars here in Tokyo on how to manage all that cash!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: What do you think of Japan's health insurance system? See in context

Good, but overpriced. Insanely so. ~10% of one's salary (at least here in Tokyo)? It's ridiculous having to pay private healthcare-level fees for essentially the bare minimum to survive here. Then you've got the self-entitled generation of seniors using ambulances like a taxi - 20,000 callouts in my area alone last year (which cost the taxpayer ¥50,000 a callout - you do the math), doctor visits like a weekly social & hospital stays like a home away from home. Japan has both the highest frequency of clinical visits (14+ times per year) AND longest average stays per capita (2 weeks+) in the world. It is simply unsustainable in its current form, as many healthcare professionals have told me on the quiet. I worry about the future for the younger generations.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Posted in: Traditionally, Japanese employees have been expected to remain at one company and have their salaries go up based on seniority instead of performance. Foreigners don’t fit into that system. See in context

@TheRat

Don't get this AT ALL? WHY can't the two be merged--you get a little more money due to your experience and a bit more based on performace! Why can't Japanese business get their head out of their arses instead of doing this ridiculous eother...or system which has failed...and only...in some cases, if not most, produces just zombies?

A good point & one I've pondered for quite some time. I basically arrived at the conclusion that the managers-to-be have endured many years of pain & incompetence at the hands of their superiors that once they find themselves in the same position, they're unlikely to rock the boat. It's a case of 'I went through hell, so now its time to reap the rewards & stuff everyone else'.

I've been in Japan a long time & I don't see this mantra changing at any point in the next few decades. The corporate culture, derived from the very archaic 'top-down' nature of the education system in Japan, is too engrained. Without an overhaul of the keystones of Japanese society (education, employment & welfare for starters), it's a sinking ship I'm afraid.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Do you think children of past generations had better manners than kids today when it comes to gestures like saying "please," "thank you" and showing respect for their elders? See in context

@shallots

Then there are the old ladies in big groups

Absolutely nothing worse. Worst manners out of any group here in Japan - especially in Tokyo. They truly don't give a stuff about anyone else but themselves. They'll elbow you out of the way for a seat, destroy all the vegies on the shelf to get to the perfectly shiny one & talk at full volume - regardless of location (yes, that includes trains).

Major self-entitlement issues...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: JAL's three-month profit more than halves See in context

More Arashi ads! They will really help! /sarcasm

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Pink Floyd to put out unreleased tracks in box set See in context

Dark Side Of The Moon is probably the greatest album of all time. It's such a masterpiece that it should be part of musical curricula across the globe. This box set will be expensive! Pink Floyd certainly had a very different sound in their earlier years! I personally preferred Gilmour's style of Waters'. The Wall is a good album in its own right, but doesn't hold a candle to Dark Side. Not even close.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: Tepid economic data report raises BOJ stimulus pressure See in context

Stimulus packages don't work. We had similar about 10 years ago in Australia where in the wake of the GFC the government went on a massive spending spree - part of that was giving each taxpayer the equivalent of 80,000 yen. You know what happened? No one spent a dime.

Australians have the highest personal debt in the world, yet people still banked the stimulus cash. Japanese are notoriously careful with their money, so anyone in government thinking people are going to spend their cash at the nearest department store has rocks in their head.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Hot campaign See in context

Should be made illegal. The noise pollution is unbearable. There's a time & place for campaigning - you know, amphitheatres & halls et al...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: China criticizes U.S., Japan, Australia for 'fanning' tensions See in context

The world: Guys! Stop building outposts, runways, refineries et al. in waters that aren't yours!

China: Hey! Stop fanning the flames!

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: Mass killing sparks debate: Why didn't the system prevent it? See in context

Two things:

1) Japan LOVES red tape. That's not even taking into the account the eternity of inaction that occurs beforehand.

2) Passing the buck is common practice. It's never anyone's fault.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Posted in: TEPCO, rail firms request removal of Pokemon Go characters from sites See in context

@Peter Qinghai

Although, I believe some establishments have worked out deals with the company running P-Go as a source of new customers.

Yep - like Pikachu apparently being in Shinjuku Gyoen (which has an admission fee).

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Endless entertainment on Enoshima: 20 recommended things to do See in context

I was there two weeks ago. Food was incredible (shirasu is a specialty there). Just don't drive down - parking is exorbitant (2hrs minimum - ¥820 yen ~) and the traffic is about the worst you'll get in Japan, particularly Route 467 that goes through Fujisawa. Absolute nightmare - and I went on a weekday!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to miss FY2020 GDP target of Y600 tril yen See in context

Abe, however, remains optimistic. He told reporters after a meeting of the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy, the government’s advisory panel, that Japan will work toward achieving its 600 trillion yen GDP target through reforms in spending, and added that it is sticking to its goal of reaching a primary budget surplus in fiscal 2020.

Another Abe hallmark. Sweeping statements without any hard numbers or concrete strategies to back them up. Wouldn't want to step on too many Old Boys' Club toes now, would we? No member wants their public-purse gravy train to grind to a halt!

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: Four years to go See in context

@joeintokyo

Like we need any reminding. This is starting to be like a 99 bottles of beer on the wall thingy.

It was always going to be like this. Japan Inc. will milk it for all it's worth.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Critics question economic impact of Abe's maglev decision See in context

@talaraedokko

The problem lies beyond one man's memory and honoring of his grandfather. It's a nation lost. Can't figure out how to get back to old glory, while tackling conflicting problems at home. Get back old glory! Blame our lessened dignity on a foreign power who designed our constitution against our will. That's the backdrop of a has-been nation fighting to get back an image while allowing its people / society to rot in wealth, consumerism, irresponsibility toward the future. People have always expected the government to lead and take responsibility. The government was never interested in leading nor taking responsibility. They care for a few special interests.

Wow. I don't think I've ever seen anyone on here put it so simply, yet effectively. My sentiments exactly. I'm leaving the country in four weeks (after almost 10 years here) and this is part of the reason. I've really seen the place on the downward spiral for years - only getting worse!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: If more people go out to look for Pokemon, it will increase consumer spending because these people will pay for transportation and meals. If local bodies organize regional Pokemon tours, it will help See in context

@gainjinfo

Leave it to the Japanese to turn a bunch of kids running around outside into some kind of top down, organized event where people go on guided Pokemon hunting tours. I can see the busloads of Japanese tourists walking around with the guy in front with the flag pointing out where all the Pokemon are.

Definitely. This is already happening in Sth. Korea & Indonesia - and the game isn't even officially out in those countries yet! I was at a World Heritage site down near Izu yesterday & there were tonnes of people playing Pokemon Go. The rarer Pokemon were around the area - including the gift shop. Whilst the technology is amazing, like everything in Japan you can't take everything at face value. It will turn this into a giant "con" where the best Pokemon / items will be at places where you'll have to pay for entry (either directly or indirectly). Nickle-and-diming is the Japanese way.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Men more enthusiastic about moving in with girlfriends than vice-versa, survey says See in context

“There are some things you can put up with if you’re married, but would bother you enough that if you were just living together you’d break up.” (Female, mid-30s) “Living together can make you lose the impetus to get married.” (Female, mid-20s)

The last two remarks are especially telling

Definitely. My ex-fiance & her parents were initially against us living together before marriage. This is the way of thinking of the more conservative element of Japan's population - particularly those out in the countryside. They see living together pre-marriage as a risk, rather than a sort of natural progression in the relationship. Each to their own of course, but my train of thought always was that it'd be better to at least live together first (& iron out all the inevitable 'kinks' that would arise).

As we'd been in a long distance arrangement & only spent short bouts living together, it was the single thing that saved me from a lifetime of torment. We called the engagement off after eight months living together. We drove each other up the wall living together (let's put it down to 'incompatibility). Something we both wouldn't have discovered until it was too late if we'd gone the way of her family's initial wishes (it took years of convincing, trust me).

Like many elements of Japanese society, it is still very much locked in an old-fashioned mindset. Which is totally fine, but this is most definitely something you need to be aware of if you ever think of taking your relationship that one step further here. Most, if not all 'baby boomer' parents will be against you & your significant other living together until you tie the knot. You will never win against his / her family, so be prepared.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: No. of children on waiting list for nurseries in Tokyo tops 8,000 See in context

@kohakuebisu

It's also a chicken and the egg problem because the places are subsidized to make up for the poor earnings of most women. The government really needs to look at improving wages for women and then getting them to pay more for childcare, which would reduce the government's burden in providing places and enable them to provide more.

This. Where I come from (Sydney), daycare is the equivalent of 10,000 yen per day (+ everything else). More than even the most expensive schools in Tokyo. Then again, minimum wages are the highest in the world & carers can earn anywhere between 4 - 5 mil yen / year (based on a 40hr working week).

The sad fact of the matter is, Japan is an Old Boys' Club who is woefully out of touch with a modern society. Any issue pertaining to women's rights - 10x worse.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Yahoo reports another big loss, writes down Tumblr value See in context

Yahoo has nothing of value. None of their assets are sellable, nor does it produce any content. It's a portal - nothingness in 2016.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: IOC explores legal options on banning all Russians from Rio See in context

Everyone's on the gear, Russia were simply unsuccessful in keeping a lid on it all.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Posted in: All three acts – Hatsune Miku, Babymetal, and Perfume – present fresh approaches to mostly familiar musical forms. You see Perfume, it’s not like anything else you would find in America. See in context

Over-produced, saccharine & samey? It's exactly what the pop world needs!

Putting these acts & "musical forms" in the same sentence is an offense to music. Do Babymetal write their own songs? Play any musical instruments? No. A bunch of salarymen in an office write their songs. Like every other act in J pop. Perfume being unique? Give me a break.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Posted in: Train men See in context

You should see these guys on the early morning platforms along the Chuo & Yamanote lines. Truly fascinating!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Nintendo announces mini NES loaded with 30 games that attaches directly to your TV See in context

$59.99 according to multiple sources

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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