Japan Today

Swami Vas comments

Posted in: Japan prepares for a surreal Olympics, and plenty of questions See in context

MAY the hopes and aspirations of all participants in and the hardworking organizers of the corona battered and postponed TOKYO OLYMPICS 2020-21 be a GRAND SUCCESS without any aberrations except stories of new HONOURS AND ACHIEVEMENTS! GOD BLESS!

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Posted in: Abe says decision to resign before accomplishing his goals 'gut-wrenching' See in context

A GREAT FRIEND OF INDIA, NOTABLY OF PM MODI who should find Japanese PM Shinzo Abe’s absence as leader of Japan a vacuum in international politics! Wishing him Godspeed recovery from his health issues and may he lead a healthy retired life! He will always be welcome in India as a great leader!

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Posted in: Modi, Abe to kick-start India's first bullet train project See in context

What an incomparable spectacular reception accorded to the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his wife in the Indian Gujarat State capital Ahmedabad an hour ago which included a receiving ceremony at the airport where the Japanese PM was received by Indian PM Narendra Modi personally, followed by a unique eight kms. road show attended by both the leaders and Mrs. Abe. They then visited the place where Indian leader Mahatma Gandhi spent most of his time - Sabarmati Ashram (resort). A unique welcome and a unique show indeed for a friendship that is also proving to be unique!

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Posted in: Allowing nuclear weapons in Japan could defuse N Korean threat: policy makers See in context

Absolutely not, that is for Japan to acquire and pile up nuclear weapons, as it will only add to proliferation of nuclear weapons in the region in particular and in the world at large! In fact, it will be detrimental to world peace rather than serving as deterrent! North Korean (NK) leadership, for now at least, is somewhat childish and unpredictable but with appropriate efforts by all concerned countries the NK leadership could be persuaded to come to negotiating table and agree to an arrangement somewhat on the lines that the US had struck with Iran!

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Posted in: Trump's claim Akie Abe wife cannot speak English generates buzz See in context

The media has clearly blown out of proportion an apparently casual mention by President Trump about what has been amplified, twisted and reported in the US media! Can't the media people use some common sense before fabricating a report on such trivial issues?

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Posted in: Destroyer came close to sinking after collision; bodies found: Fleet commander See in context

What happened to the powerful war machine of US – USS Fitzgerald – is very sad and unfortunate indeed, heartfelt condolences to families of those soldiers who lost their lives in the incident, but such accidents only reaffirms the reality that however powerful, strong and modern a war machine such as this one may be, they are all vulnerable to unexpected calamities such as this one, especially in a scenario where more and more countries have acquired all sorts of weapons in the latter half of last century and they continue to do so in the current century. What is in extreme danger of causing massive destruction across the world however is accumulation of nuclear arsenals in the hands of many countries, especially when they fall into the hands of terrorists who are having an upper hand in many countries, notably terrorist state Pakistan! Japan is the only country so far placed in an ideal position to reflect on such a disaster! The world is watching what the so-called super powers can or will do to avoid in the days and years ahead such a destructive disaster which will be several times deadlier than what Japan faced in 1945! One thing is certain though, the strength of no country can be underestimated today - North Korea is one such impoverished nation which can trigger at any time a single spark leading to an instant prairie fire that will spread across the world in unseen proportions and engulfing and burning alive billions of people if not the entire human race! In fact the question is, isn’t the human race already glaring at a gloomy future and is engulfed by a strong feeling of emptiness? Readers of JAPANTODAY are invited to express their opinions!

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Posted in: G7 leaders divided on climate change, closer on trade issues See in context

US President Donald Trump is right in calling global warming 'a hoax' because whatever be the sacrifices and steps taken by the present generation, it will all dissipate into thin air, especially with the likelihood of a doubling of the world population in less than a century! So, instead of attempting to tame nature, focus on gradual control and possible reduction of population across the world!

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Posted in: Trump would be 'honored' to meet N Korea's Kim, if conditions right See in context

A highly commendable, just right and excellent move by the US President Donald Trump! A peaceful solution to North Korean crisis is the only way forward in the interest of maintaining stability and peace not only in the region but the entire world! Any accidental trigger can lead to a prairie fire which under the nuclear weapon atmosphere will have unpredictable consequences and Japan is ideally fit to understand it!

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Posted in: No. of foreign workers in Japan tops 1 mil for first time See in context

Skilled labour shortage is an inevitable economic phenomenon resulting from varying population policies of different countries in the past several decades and the situation is bound to worsen in the years to come in many countries such as Japan where the shortage will persist for a pretty long duration until automation becomes an order of the day. Also, many out-dated manufacturing practices will fade and be replaced by improving technology. Until then, during the transition period, the affected countries will witness unusual economic aberrations.

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Posted in: An iPhone made in America? Not that simple See in context

The ‘Make in America’ and ‘Buy America’ policies of the new US administration have to face many untold hurdles before being successful. The story of Apple and its much publicized iPhone is different altogether. Apple products are developed and designed in the US while components are made and assembled elsewhere. This situation can hardly change in the foreseeable future, and any move to do everything within USA will escalate the production cost. The main Apple contractor Foxconn already have established huge plants in China and new ones are planned for other countries in Asia, such as India. Meanwhile, Apple is facing keen competition from other emerging Asian smart phone producers and it could all possibly mean the final episode of Apple Story is not far from reality.

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Posted in: Trump plan for tax on Mexico exports raises eyebrows in Asia See in context

The US President Donald Trump is indeed enthusiastic in rushing with his deep desire to implement his election campaign promises but one wonders whether or not the jet speed is somewhat abnormal, especially in his trade related initiatives. A tax on imports from Mexico will eventually hit the American people who depend heavily on imported consumer goods from there and other parts of the world. That apart, the BUY AMERICA policy initiative of Donald Trump has some inevitable inherent problems especially for the industry and trade to find the right skilled people and to pay them the mandatory US minimum wage which could add up to the cost and final retail price of such products.

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Posted in: Trump still sees himself as leading an insurgency See in context

SWAMI’S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT: The report has begun stating Donald Trump’s inauguration as ‘blustery salesmanship’ which to a great extent is right and literally so as the weather did turn blustery and it poured soon after Donald ended his inaugural address, but to say he conducted his campaign with a ‘naked contempt for the established political order’ is somewhat misplaced! What makes one to think the political order prior to Donald Trump’s installation as President was perfect in any sense whatsoever! To his eyes, it is in a great mess and hence he started his entry by placing a series of challenging tasks in front of the nation, especially the people whom he wants to be the ‘rulers of the nation’ – pretty appropriate for a democratically elected leader to tell the people. Whether the new President’s promises will come of age depends on his team and team work, including the Congress and the Senate! To say the election itself was ‘divisive’ is again a misconception. At the most, it was a closely fought election and being so is pretty perfect in a democracy! But it became part of history once the results were announced and the entire population of the country should abide by the verdict! And, being fresh from the campaign, it is not uncommon for an elected leader to reflect on that experience at the inauguration-related events as Donald Trump did! Having said that, this is no time to dwell into the merits and demerits of the two major political groups in the US as both have a mixed bag behind them! In fact, it is so with political parties anywhere in the world! “Politicians prospered - but the jobs left, and the factories closed, and the establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country.” Very true, in fact it also impacted many overseas investors, including many individuals, in the US economy, as a consequence of the 2008 financial crisis caused solely by US FINANCIAL BUSINESS MISMANAGEMENT! It is still not too late to undo the damage done, especially to foreign individual investors in the US economy who have immeasurably incurred losses as a result of the policy blunders of US businessmen and the government!

Moderator: Please refrain from beginning your posts with SWAMI’S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT.

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Posted in: Hundreds of thousands of women stage anti-Trump protests across U.S. See in context

SWAMI’S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT: Sheer craziness for these women to indulge in such meaningless demonstrations! If there is any individual who has a feeling of being hurt by what President Donald Trump has said in his inaugural address or in his campaign speeches, they are welcome to bring their grievances to the President’s personal attention for possible solutions instead of wasting time and resources staging fruitless street protests!

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Posted in: Japan threatens India with WTO action on steel exports See in context

SWAMI'S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT: 'The bug stops here'! When it comes to protecting interest of one's own industry and labor, Japan always stands out as a champion, and it was that motto, right or wrong in the present world scenario, which made Japan a super industrial power in so short a time since its total collapse in the process of the second world war! Similar steps being adopted by others therefore should not be resented but be embraced and accommodated to create a new sense of world trade partnership! With a positive attitude, what is impossible can be turned into PRACTICAL!

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Posted in: Trump unleashes Twitter attack against civil rights leader; protests begin across U.S. See in context

SWAMI’S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT: Maybe a bit belated to air my thought but I think Donald Trump was perfectly right to urge Congressman John Lewis D-ga to focus on improving living conditions for people in his district which Trump termed as in ‘horrible condition’ ! He should spend ‘more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not to mention crime infested) rather than falsely complaining about the election results,” Donald Trump said. In his inaugural address, Trump bluntly put that there was no room for politicians who talk and talk and take no action to improve ground level for people. ‘We will not accept politicians who are all talk and no action,’ he said.

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Posted in: Asian media decry isolationist Trump, fear economic, diplomatic turmoil See in context

SWAMI'S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT: It is rather short-sighted if not selfish to conclude US President Donald Trump is somewhat isolationist in the light of what he said in his inaugural address, He talked of completely eradicating fanatical Islamism from the face of earth, he talked of determining together the course of America and the world for many years to come! ‘Whether we are black or brown or white, we all bleed the same red blood’ in our veins, he said. What’s wrong for a leader, especially a newly elected one, to tell his people the power is being transferred from ‘Washington DC to the people of America’ who he wants to become the rulers of that nation? After all, democracy means participation and participation of the people in the government! What is wrong for a leader to say that the forgotten men and women of his country would be forgotten no longer? What is wrong for a new leader to assert that he together with his countrymen would make his country great again?

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Posted in: Japan takes aid show to Africa in China's shadow See in context

SWAMI'S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT: It is a welcome development that resourceful nations like Japan, China and India from Asia are exploring opportunities in Africa for expansion of trade and investment and there is a indeed a need for such investments in several impoverished African countries. In this context, it would perhaps be ideal for Japan to join hands with India which has a better knowledge of African markets - economic, social and cultural - and both Japan and India can immensely benefit from such a co-operation at government level. India is already moving in the same direction and convened a summit of over 50 African leaders held in India not long ago and the Indian Prime Minister recently visited several African countries. Japan and India are already co-operating in many areas of economic development and such a co-operation in developing African market will not only benefit both but add to the increasing list of Indo-Japan co-operative efforts! (cc: PMO / MEA, India)

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Posted in: Clinton says controversies behind her; Trump begs to differ See in context

SWAMI'S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT: Just election stunt or virus - verbal assaults on each other between the two aspiring US presidential candidates! Only time will prove to what extent it will impact or influence the electorate especially the undecided or unsettled moderates and we have to await the results just over twelve weeks away!

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Posted in: Abe in Kenya to launch summit on African development See in context

SWAMI'S THOUGHTS ON THE SUBJECT: This move by Japan to explore African market is in the right direction but maybe Japan could consider joining hands with India which is also working in the same direction. An African summit attended by several heads of States from Africa was held recently in India followed by Prime Minister Modi's tour of Africa not long ago. With Japan and India already co-operating in various fields this would be an addition to that increasing list of co-operative efforts by both the countries!

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Posted in: Trump's new derisive nickname for Clinton - 'Rotten' See in context

SWAMI'S THOUGHTS ON CURRENT AFFAIRS: As the 2016 US election process reaches the final show down stage between the two parties - Democrats and Republicans - it seems there will be many such exchanges which could be construed character assassination! One wonders why this 'character assassination' creeps in every democratic election wherever it is held across the world!

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Posted in: Shabani the gorilla is so handsome he’ll be appearing on sweets in Japan on Valentine’s Day See in context

Pretty interesting Valentine's Day customs Japanese style, especially this year's specialty featuring Shabani the handsome gorilla. This brings to mind the Singapore zoo where visitors could have breakfast with a similar one there!

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Posted in: Japan, India agree on bullet train, defense, nuclear tech deals See in context

Paulinusa - Yes, Japanese Prime Minister thought so and has struck the right analogy! India and China are two fast developing economic powers in the current century adopting their own approaches to achieving the same goals! SenseNotSoCommon - The government of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is policy driven and focuses mainly on a developmental agenda for the entire country. Moonraker - Hopefully you have kept track of developments in the last few years when US struck a nuclear deal with India followed by many others in the nuclear club who have already followed suit or are working in that direction. Marcelito - Yes, it is a two way process and both Japan and India will benefit from their renewed closer economic co-operation in the years to come. The agreements struck in New Delhi are just a tip of the iceberg and many others are in the pipeline!

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Posted in: Abe heads to India See in context

It does not seem right for Moonraker to comment that Japan has no principle in the likelihood of striking a nuclear deal with India, especially to say that relevant principle is being compromised for money! India has had concluded nuclear deals with many countries since the time it struck the nuclear deal with the US, and Japan is not the first or the last one. And, India is a responsible nuclear power unlike others like Pakistan which has legally or illegally sold nuclear weapon making technology to other countries notably North Korea! Japan may have refused nuclear deals with India in the past but circumstances then were different from what prevails today!

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Posted in: Bangladesh asylum seeker deported after working for years in Japan See in context

All asylum seekers from wherever they emanate have their own reasons to do so and in order to make their claims convincing to authorities in the country they aspire to settle in they add a dose of political persecution to their reasons to seek shelter elsewhere!

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Posted in: Trump lead among Republicans undiminished in first poll after Muslim comments See in context

The comment made by Republican Presidential hopeful Donald Trump was not abnormal in the given circumstances and as such it was not expected to have an impact on his popularity as a leading Republican candidate for the next elections despite the sharp criticism of what he said by the Democratic hopeful Hilary Clinton!

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Posted in: India board censors 2 Bond kissing scenes in 'Spectre' See in context

Ironically, lip-locks are pretty common in Bollywood films and in that light this ban on a Hollywood production seems somewhat strange! Other bans such as adversely impacting religious feelings or conveying wrong messages on social issues are understandable but not scenes which are considered sexy under Indian standards!

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Posted in: Japan takes S Korea to WTO over Fukushima-related food import restrictions See in context

The concern of both the countries is understandable but the dictum ''customer is always right'' stands out here and South Korea is absolutely within its rights to decide on quality of its imports especially food items! Let us bear in mind that the first priority of any government is and must indeed be the health of the people! It is absolutely the prerogative of any government to protect the interests of its people and when it comes to food, local conditions and acceptability may differ from even international acceptable norms! As for Japan, it will be a while before memories of the tragic Fukushima nuclear disaster fade and disappear people's minds and instead of rushing the issue to WTO level where this complaint may not stand the test there ought to be better understanding, patience and perseverance ( Japanese are known for these qualities!) at source level! Time alone will heal the wounds of the natural-calamity-caused tragedy and restore normalcy in due course and this is bound to happen sooner or later!

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Posted in: Jetstar Asia apologizes for not allowing disabled man on plane See in context

Such totally unacceptable discrimination in today's world deserve utmost condemnation!

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Posted in: Japan joins international aid operations for quake-hit Nepal See in context

With generous aid pouring into Nepal the tiny nation will soon come out of the present crisis!

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Posted in: Nepali workers in Japan fret over families at home after quake See in context

In a natural calamity like the deadly earthquake that ravaged the tiny Himalayan kingdom there are bound to be many such touching human stories involving millions of people heavily impacted by the tragic incident! If one has to spot a nation that has repeatedly faced such calamities it can be none other than Japan!

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