SunnyMorning comments

Posted in: 'Black companies' exploiting foreign trainees See in context

Saxon Salute,

Thanks, I didn't know about that situation. I have no experience with Eikaiwa, and was speaking from experience in several companies. But I guess there are more variations out there than I had known.

Yes, I agree that unions are not the answer. In some cases they create problems. A friend (Japanese) in a union says that it is the union that sets how many hours of overtime they can do. (Not the one hour per day like you have, though.) This restriction does not allow them to meet their deadlines. So, they all have to punch their timecards at 10 pm, then continue working. If there had been no union, they could have gotten paid for all of the overtime they do past 10 pm.

Why doesn't the union know about this? All the members are taking part in it. But the manager gets so much guff from the union leader for violations of this "rule" that he strictly enforces that they stay within the union limits for paid overtime. It seems he gets no guff for making them work after they have punched their time cards. Huh?

Probably this kind of nonsense is going on all over the place. They really aren't unions as we think of them in the West.

Maybe more foreign union member activity can get things moving in a more realistic direction.

"All the unions really want to do is make sure non-Japanese employees are on shakai-hoken."

I haven't seen that. But then again, I haven't been in places where there were more than 1 or 2 non-Japanese employees.

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Posted in: 'Black companies' exploiting foreign trainees See in context

Qamar,

I agree with Lowly. The people who don't have complaints are not writing here! They are happily living their lives...

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Posted in: 'Black companies' exploiting foreign trainees See in context

Brian: A foreign trainee wouldn't be able to join a Japanese union. As to foreign workers, I am now in a Japanese union because I have one of the rare same-as-a-Japanese-person position/contract. Foreign workers with different-from-Japanese contracts as well as contracted (not lifetime employed) Japanese labor are usually not accepted into these unions. It's based on your contract/position, not whether or not you are foreign. So you can see that this is difficult to attain only because, from previous comments, such a position is difficult to get for a foreigner. In many cases, it is not so easy for Japanese to get either, not without going to the right universities or having been a housewife for a decade, or a variety of other things that leave a lot of the population outside of the benefits that come with lifetime employment.

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Posted in: 'Black companies' exploiting foreign trainees See in context

Responsibilities:

One place where I was doing contract work wanted me to go in to work (Tokyo) on the DAY AFTER 311! Right after all those people couldn't get home the night before, and trains weren't even running from my area yet. I said I couldn't, and they wanted me to "try as best I could". I knew that if I went in, there was no guarantee I was going to get back home again that night. I had a family, wasn't sure if food supplies were going to be available in the near future, or if further quakes were going to strike. So I said no. I ended up quitting that job within a week of that due to further demands.

As to the Japanese workers, they all spent the day "trying" to get there, but none of them actually made it.

Either that, or they just said they were trying, and were at home like I was.

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Posted in: 'Black companies' exploiting foreign trainees See in context

Maybe one problem is that none of the Japanese expect anyone to actually want to STAY here permanently- they EXPECT people to either plan to leave, or get fed up with it all and then leave. So then it seems unwise to give someone like that the responsibilities and opportunities of someone you know will stay.

And when treated that way, we do actually leave.

The system feeds on itself.

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Posted in: Mount Fuji's World Heritage status worries some See in context

Will there really be an increase in foreign climbers due to the World Heritage designation?

Japan is obsessed with World Heritage designations, but is it so big in other countries? My father in the U.S. had never even heard of "World Heritage", and didn't know that UNESCO had such a thing. Does the media carry news like that to other countries? If not, we may not see any specific rise in climbers from abroad.

Unless people decide to climb Mt. Fuji in 2020, when they're here for they Olympics. But that would have nothing to do with UNESCO.

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Posted in: Mount Fuji's World Heritage status worries some See in context

This is a curious article because just recently it was announced that there were FEWER climbers this year than usual, after the World Heritage designation. So, are these "worrying" people not aware of that? Is there really going to be this huge increase in people in following years, if we didn't see that happening this year?

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Posted in: Prison uses cuddly mascot in image makeover See in context

The mascot is not for the prisoners benefit

True, but who knows what it does on its off hours? You think you're alone in solitary confinement, when all of a sudden you see this thing staring through the peephole... how long had it been there?

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Posted in: TEPCO exec tells DPJ Fukushima plant not under control See in context

It is criminal not to close dow ever nuclear plant in the world.

But closing them down still won't solve the problem of their existence... we can never erase the existence of this material we have created.

I have no solutions for what to do with existing plants, but one thing I know: there is nothing stupider than building new ones.

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Posted in: Prison uses cuddly mascot in image makeover See in context

If I were a hardened criminal and was being led into that prison, then this crazy thing came up and welcomed me, I'd seriously regret having committed my crime. Or at least, regret being caught.

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Posted in: TEPCO exec tells DPJ Fukushima plant not under control See in context

I'm just glad someone let slip the fact that they do really think it isn't under control. Anyone can tell from the news that it isn't under control, and it was getting very stressful to be told it was under control when it obviously wasn't.

Sometimes I think Abe didn't realize the full meaning of "under control" in English. (his speech was made in English) He might have meant to say "we're taking care of it" which they may think they are doing, to the best of their abilities. But "under control" has a whole different meaning, which would be a situation in which there were no leaking radiation reports daily, no spikes in radiation nearby or out in the ocean, no fastly increasing numbers of tanks holding tons and tons of radioactive water.

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Posted in: Going round in circles: Japan considers introducing roundabouts See in context

Sounds like a lot of money necessary to dig up existing intersections and build these. Shouldn't that be spent elsewhere? Or, not spent at all? Sounds like another "we have to spend all of the money in our budget or else we won't get money next year" plan.

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Posted in: Abe says Olympics 'will repay debt we owe the world' See in context

We will pay the debt of support we owe the world from the time of the tsunami.”

No country thinks of such as a debt... pay it forward, Abe, don't pay it back. Help other countries when they have disasters.

Or rather- wait until Fukushima is squared away and perfectly safe, and until dispaced people all have permanent homes and communities. THEN call the event over, and start thinking about other countries. And silliness like Olympics.

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Posted in: Tokyo governor slams Fukushima coverage on eve of 2020 vote See in context

Inose, who said all food was checked for contamination when it was brought in from outside Tokyo

Huh? How could you check all food for contamination? Only certain supermarket chains have a check-all policy, and even then they do it on a sample base.

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Posted in: Civil Code unfair to children born out of wedlock See in context

And this won't have much to do with a lot of families, who have no real "inheritance" of substance.

I wonder how many of these politicians have secret children?? Perhaps they will come out of the woodwork now.

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Posted in: Civil Code unfair to children born out of wedlock See in context

Following a recommendation from the United Nations that Japan redress the discriminatory treatment of children

I agree with comments here that say things need to change regarding responsibility for children first.

In most cases, inheritance happens after the "children" have become adults. How is this change helping children? Helping "offspring" is more like it.

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Posted in: Would you support a U.S. military strike on Syria? See in context

Disillusioned: True. But why add more sources of aggression in the region? Speaking of my hypothetical house, the chances of its being bombed just goes up.

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Posted in: Would you support a U.S. military strike on Syria? See in context

Hmmm, all the anti-US sentiments are interesting. I wonder if the opinions would be different if they had used Sarin gas against your family and neighbors.

Yeah, I'd just love to have my house bombed by the US right after losing my family and neighbors to a Sarin gas attack.

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Posted in: Would you support a U.S. military strike on Syria? See in context

If it's anything like Iraq, America might already be bombing the country covertly.

http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/article137129.ece bombing started "not in March 2003, as most believed, but in August 2002."

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Posted in: Seven-Eleven illegally threatened store holders over discounts, court finds See in context

More info on wasted food in Japan, and a lot has to do with expiry dates:

http://2hj.org/english/problem/

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Posted in: Man shows visiting caseworker skeletal remains in closet See in context

It was just a joke, Cricky.

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Posted in: Seven-Eleven illegally threatened store holders over discounts, court finds See in context

Hopefully marking down bentos can help reduce the shocking amount of good food wasted every day in Japan.

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Posted in: Man shows visiting caseworker skeletal remains in closet See in context

If they arrest the man for not reporting the dead body in his closet when he found out about it (as he did not put it there or know about it when it was put there), then they should arrest the caseworker as well because she didn't report it right away either.

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Posted in: If you could make some suggestions to Canadian Sarah Casanova, who is taking over as McDonald's Japan's new CEO and president, what would they be? See in context

Don't go the American way of making increasingly large sizes of things. People here are less attracted to saving a few yen as they are by season specials and new menu items. And if things get bigger, they WILL eat/drink them all... and there goes the waistline.

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Posted in: Civic groups angered after kids handle assault weapons at U.S. Navy open house See in context

RealJapan: "I guess the children never went to a Game Center."

Maybe it's the civic groups that never went to a Game Center!

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Posted in: If you could make some suggestions to Canadian Sarah Casanova, who is taking over as McDonald's Japan's new CEO and president, what would they be? See in context

Put up notices encouraging women to do their grooming in the bathrooms in front of a mirror instead of at their seats after their meal. Combing long hair next to me while i'm eating... then spraying with hairspray? It definitely rained down on my food. Even puffs and such with powder tend to drift over to other tables, not to mention the fact that the whole thing is disgusting to watch. One person started to rub moisturizer into her bare feet across from me.

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Posted in: 10 simple ways to ruin a Japanese wife’s day See in context

A lot of people are assuming that women without jobs were surveyed, but there's no indication of that. There is also a general attitude that most women don't work in Japan... but there are a heck of a lot of women working these days, especially in metropolitan areas where a survey like this was probably taken. It is getting harder and harder to live off just one income here.

As to women complaining about trivial things... if you read the article, the women were TOLD to answer with trivial things, not major problems. The article hints that these are things you might be ignoring in your daily life, but when you think about it, you realize that they drive you crazy. So it's not like the women surveyed went out of their way to complain about their spouses. I can imagine some of them might have answered like... "Well, gee, nothing really. I guess I don't like it when he leaves the seat up. I'll check that box." Or they look at a list and check things that their husband DOES, not the things they complain about all the time.

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Posted in: 10 simple ways to ruin a Japanese wife’s day See in context

I didn't know that there were Japanese men who left the seat up. My J husband FREAKS OUT if we leave the top up. I can't imagine what he thinks of guys who leave the seat up as well. Thought it was cultural- guess not!

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Posted in: Hot Halloween See in context

Better get the valentine hearts ready!

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Posted in: Snoozing here, there and everywhere See in context

Bringing Japanese spouses abroad to meet your relatives can be embarrassing. They're always nodding off through lively family dinners, and passing out in cars during scenic rides. It's like they're 87 years old instead of in their late 20s. I would never have thought it necessary to tell someone that "it's polite to stay awake during social events or even when in a long car ride with other people." I guess that's how different social etiquette can be between cultures.

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