Japan is becoming just like any other country. Losing their national identity. I didn’t come to live/work in Japan to have Japanese dumbed down to me because I look like a “foreigner”
Based on my experience most Japanese people under the age of 40 see Keigo as more of a hindrance more than anything else.
Making Japanese simple and less formal is better for everyone, most of the honorifics and politeness seems to me to be a way a enforcing hierarchies and ones position which should be less strict in this day and age anyway.
The idea that somone automatically gains respect based of their age position or gender is antiquated in my opinion, respect is something that is earned not given by default.
11 ( +12 / -1 )
Is it better to be too fat or too thin?
A majority of the time the response from health professionals and regular people would be too thin.
Fat shaming seems to be a hot topic at the moment and I am not exactly certain why its become taboo to tell people who are overweight or obese that it is in fact unhealthy, speaking as somone who had an unhealthy diet and was overweight for most of their teen years I would not promote it as something to be proud of it was bad for my physical and mental health.
At the end of the day people need to eat healthy foods and excercise there are no shortcuts or simple answers and losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight is something that is different for each person.
I am not sure whether or not i would consider Japan's weight classifications necessarily wrong but rather question why western society in general has such lax standards, 53% of Australian's are considered to be overweight but rather than telling people they need to eat better and excercise we seem to be sending the message that its fine to be overweight or obese as long as you are happy and just forget about of the health implications that go along with that.
My wife is Japanese and weighs 38kg, she eats healthy food and doesn't have an eating disorder and whilst i think she should do more exercise I would still prefer her to be underweight than over.
We live in an age of excesses and its easy to fall into a habit of doing everything to excess, maybe instead of promoting body images we should be promoting self regulation in people giving them better skills to manage their own weight and health.
-1 ( +5 / -6 )
No wonder, that place is toxic and overrun by anti-Japanese activists.
This site isn't overrun by anti-japanese activists, stop confusing legitimate problems and arguments with anti-japanese notions many people here live in Japan or have Japanese spouses. Just because they make negative comments it doesn't mean that hate Japan it just means that Japan like many other countries has problems it needs to fix and like many other countries it likes to ignore them rather then fix them.
I think its pretty hard to be generous on your average salary mans wage and try to raise a family at the same time, its probably more related to inequality and a lack of income then a cheapness in the population.
2 ( +2 / -0 )
My wife started working for a major Japanese hotel chain the other day and she was told she wasn't allowed to wear pants and flat shoes and instead had to wear high heels and a skirt as well as about another 100 stupid rules.
Anyone who thinks Japanese society is becoming more open and progressive only has to walk into any professional workplace and realise that its just lip service.
People keep asking why She is moving to Australia instead of settling in Japan doesn't take a genius to figure that one out, only a fool would stay in a country with backward rules and obvious sexism in the workforce.
13 ( +16 / -3 )
Having seen the documentary on Her story and watched her have to painfully retell the series of events I'm not sure how many people could believe that she would go to the trouble of making this all up to end up public shamed and shunned, its an incredibly difficult task questioning the backwards systems in Japan but also questioning somone in a position of power.
Beiing married to a Japanese women now I often wonder if people realise how difficult it is for women to even raise such issues, not only is there the stigma still attached to it in Japan but you get stupid old men banding together to defend the actions of other equally stupid old men in an attempt to cover up their own guilt with claims of chivalry, when in fact they are the lowest of low.
I don't know what i would do if one of those scum buckets ever pulled something like that on my wife or my daughter but I think people can at least take hope that women in Japan are now making themselves heard on a world wide scale that this sort of behavior particularly by people in.positions of power is completely unacceptable.
I hope the guys career is destroyed its the least he deserves.
15 ( +16 / -1 )
If a picture says a thousand words then the opening one is saying some pretty strong words about the old boys club that is Japanese hierarchy.
A room full of ignorant old conservative men celebrating something that's going to entrench their positions and make them more money.
Now i remember why i wanted to leave Japan.
Isn't that the same mayor that banned people from working in local government if they had tattoos?
Wonder if he will ban foreigners with tattoos from attending as well.
11 ( +14 / -3 )
Yeah my experiance of junior high sports days was kids marching in military synchronization whilst carrying flags, it made me feel very uncomfortable.
The military uses drill as a tool to condition soldiers into taking orders, why its practiced at Junior High Schools is beyond me, and a lot of the sporting events were more like gag events. It felt like to me it was just another way to indoctrinate values and behavious into students.
3 ( +4 / -1 )
What pathetic behavior by Serena talk about a bad loser.
Congratulations to Naomi for a fantastic effort and she should be proud that she played so well in spite of a hostile crowd, she Doesnt need to appologise for anything!
10 ( +11 / -1 )
No surprises here you reap what you sow.
No jobs available, the ones that are would be for companies where the management is basically stuck on and still has pig headed and backwards attitudes to work and promotion. Still don't understand how the government keeps complaining on one hand about the declining birth rate and then introduces stupid bills that allow 100 hours of overtime a month and don't provide enough child care to keep up with demand.
You want people to have kids then provide them with a lifestyle conducive to it.
11 ( +12 / -1 )
This is really sad, i used to live and work in inagawa. There was a lot of construction going on because of the new Kobe highway there. I can pretty much guarantee that the workers were told to continue working even with the bad conditions, if the city council is anything like the board of education they often ignore warnings and take a pig headed approach. When i was working there a typhoon warning was called, all the children were sent home and the teachers were expected to remain at school, when i raised the issue everyone just ignored eveidently i was the only one who went home. Utterly ridiculous, i am sure this tragedy could have been avoided.
2 ( +2 / -0 )
gokai_wo_manekuToday 08:24 am JST
I have no objection to foreigners coming to Japan to work and fill the labor shortage. They add diversity too. But what about the real issue: why don't Japanese young people marry and have children? Our old politic
Its funny how often i hear a lot of Japanese people say this, especially those who lived through the bubble economy.
I would have thought the answer to why people have less kids is obvious.
Less opertunities for younger people to get full time ongoing work that pays well (not to mention the lack of performance based pay, the economy is stiffled by an outdated seniority system) long work hours that make meeting people next to impossible. Rising cost of living insurance and taxes, due to supporting an aging population.
I think young people are also disenchanted, they feel like they have no voice and their lives are controlled by a bunch of old and corrupt cronies i mean look at the percentage of young people that actually vote, and look at the attitude of politicians who continually do the wrong thing and never get fired or arrested.
1 ( +2 / -1 )
Isn't it just a tad racist the way Japan seems to accept workers mainly from other Asian countries?
Reminds a bit of Australia's policy in the 50-60s where they tried to take the whitest looking immigrants from Europe due to a perception that other cultures wouldn't intergrate properly into society due to language and cultural barriers.
Not really any good news hear anyway, i doubt the workers will be given any rights, will be paid a pittance, put on sham visas and if they complain they will be sent packing for not ganbareing enough.
13 ( +18 / -5 )
Wow, and people actually believe this?
Wen you raise a generation not to question anything they just automatically agree with the majority. Just look at the amount of Japanese people who still think.blood type is linked to personality.
2 ( +2 / -0 )
I love how these articles try to justify stupid behaviors and archaic cultural norms.
In reality when the manager says something everyone is expected to fall in line behind that opinion or action, its not about wa in most cases its about people being to afraid to question stupid behaviours and systems for fear of being ostracized.
Japan is the country that needs to change its practices if it wants to move into the global economy more not the other way around.
1 ( +1 / -0 )
The Japanese work system is a joke....
One that's not really funny at all, weak and corrupt unions, weak laws and law enforcement and now you have the president trying to tell us including mandatory overtime in contracts is a good thing?
How about you introduce performance based pay, abolish the seniority system, make overtime hours payed at time and a half or double time and actually enforce such as system, put work hours down on contracts not just simply a salary per year.
If they actually changed the system companies would have cry for a few years then actually be forced to change the inefficient and unhealthy way they operate and workers might actually want to go to work and god forbid want to go home on time.
15 ( +15 / -0 )
Very good. Much much better than rules in shambles as at most schoold in US and Europe.
Really? Would you be happy if your workplace told you exactly how your facial features should look and came and measured your trouser length everyday?
I often feel like schhols in Japan are operated more like penial camps then schools.
Also i fail to see how drilling conformity does anything but promote closed and narrow mindedness and make anyone who's different feel excluded and not wanted.
Schools in Japan are not without problem students either, often the system just gives up on them and bunches them together in less prestigious High Schools and lets them essentially give up on their education.
Japan doesn't want to make independent and strong thinkers just obedient bucket heads.
Come to Japan but leave your creativity and personality at the door please.
24 ( +26 / -2 )
Now lets hear from families- that can tell us some scare stories- about those idiotic kids that are driving their cars in and out of traffic at high speeds, causing most traffic accidents and killing loved ones.
As one of those young people driving in and out of traffic at speeds, i can tell you there would be no need to if people obeyed the proper limits and didn't just drive 40km everywhere.
Most people i have seen overtaking people at speeds do so when people in front of them are driving far too slow or sit in the overtaking lane a slow speeds.
I think there should be a test for older drivers, my grandfather was driving like a maniac late into his seventies and shouldn't of had a license.
Also speed is not the only factor, speed itself is not an issue depending on the car, if you drive a turbo charged Mercedes with four ventilated disc brakes your going to be stopping faster then the idiot hooning around in their kei car with drum brakes and bald tires.
Most the acceidents occur when people don't stop at red lights, don't indicate properly or my favourite the Japanese habit of just stopping in the middle of the road and putting your hazard lights on, I've seen people do this on highways, at the top of hills just before the top so you can't see what's coming in the opposite direction and also when people park in turning lanes.
Lets not even get into no parking zones where cops never fine people.
The real issue here isn't speed its basic trafic law knowledge, knowing your cars limits, control and distracted drivers.
And just for anecdotes sake i drive a turbo charged wrx in Japan and the only car accident i ever had was when an old man reversed into my car when it was stationary in a car park with both my hazards and headlights on, apparently he didn't bother checking his rear view mirror.
Another friend of mine was driving in nigatta when he was rear ended by an old women who didn't give herself enough braking distance.
Another time i was at a shopping center car park about to get in my car when an elderly Japanese gentleman came up to me and asked me to put his automatic car into drive for him because he didn't know how too, how the hell he got out of the car park i don't know, but he was far more of a risk then i was.
0 ( +2 / -2 )
What Japan knows how to do is toil aimlessly, a kind of "labor theater". It's not work, but it keeps people busy without having to think much.
That's probably one of the most articulate ways i have heard it put.
Coming from a service and support background it frustrates me even more when you see problems and are used to fixing them or at least suggesting there is a problem that needs to be fixed or some way something could be improved.
In Japan when you notice their is an issue or something being done incorrectly in a stupid fashion people seem to do everything possible to avoid pointing it out or continue to do it in a ridiculous fashion because "that's the way its always been done". Nothing makes stand out more in a collectivist society like criticism positive or not.
8 ( +8 / -0 )
I think the issue that everyone is getting to is accountability and fear of failure which are factors to why Japans businesses and companies are in such a mess.
No one is held responsible for their actions, and the higher up the chain you go the less responsible people are for their actions and the consequences for stupidity, ignorance or flat out lying seem to be a slap on the wrist.
Recently i saw an article in an Australian paper that said employers caught not paying their employees superannuation (essentially the Australian pension) correctly would face up to one years jail time.
yet in japan we see all sorts of scandals going on from Kobe steel falsifying reports to Densos staff wacking themselves from overwork, and what happens to the people responsible in management? they give a little bow apologies and keep their jobs and ridiculous pay checks.
Until the labor standards board gets some real teeth, actually prosecutes fines and jails people and until actual changed and modernization of the work force are forced through, Japan will remain a completely outdated, inefficient and horrendous place to work.
As for inefficiency and face to face work platforms, its usually a blatant refusal of staff and management to change their behaviors. I used to work for a BOE and the women there would always call me on the phone or request i came and see her in person, when i informed her that it was easier and more convenient to send my an email, Line, or text message which i could then also translate and it would result in less errors, her responses was to completely ignore what i said and return to her previous behavior.
I asked a room full of business English students the other day about their work life balance and communication with other co workers and I got a resounding "there is none" as far as I'm concerned you cant get much more from the horses mouth than that.
1 ( +1 / -0 )
Sarah cried when she couldn’t get an angel for our tree in Japan, I thought she was being overly dramatic
Uh she is being overdramtic.
How about this article actually mentions comparability between people regardless of the culture, if you can't relax and be yourself around someone then its not going to matter where you come from.
I bitch about Japan to my Japanese gf all the time, the thing the types of issues i raise are things she thinks are dumb too, such as paperwork work life balance, power imbalance etc.
As said several times before young Japanese people are frequently more in touch with their emotions and open until they go through the Junior high school and senior high school system where they get drilled into a stupid conservative way of behaving and realised that their life if going to be severely affected by standardized testing that produces robots with no decent job skills.
9 ( +9 / -0 )
Another example of Japan's broken employment system.
Bully people until they leave and do what you want if your in charge because there are no consequences. This country has some of the worst working conditions and power harassment problems in the developed its pathetic and something needs to be done.to fix it, not next year or in ten.years but right now. If your a backwards thinking old man who just wants to hold onto his power and status because you have been working on the same place for thirty years you should be sacked on the spot.
3 ( +4 / -1 )
Does anyone think working conditions in Japan are gong to change?
Lots of people i speak too say its getting better but i honesty don't think it is, the hierarchy in place makes progression too slow, and also creates an atmosphere that promotes laziness amongst older staff and stiffles productivity and non lateral thinking.
You also have the increasing amount of jobs offered on a temp contract or employers trying to do everything possible to not pay health insurance or to have to turn staff onto permanent contracts.
0 ( +0 / -0 )
It is a bit ridiculous that foreigners are left out of the calculations, for the most part they pay taxes, and are forced to join an expensive health system and pension service that mainly props up the older generation. There seems to be a lot of taking money without proper representation going on.
As for the birthrate i hope it continues to drop, too many people on the planet as it is and Japan's population is huge for its geographical size.
Maybe eventually when it drops low enough they will actually start letting more foreigners come here, but probably by that point it will be a economic and cultural backwater because the old coots in charge refused to modernise and get with the times.
-1 ( +4 / -5 )
S. Korea Business men can't achieve promoting business for their country.
Oh please, Japan is just as bad if not worse. Just look at the lying management at Kobe steel.
At least this guy is punished, in Japan you can break the law as much as you want as long as your standing in the company or society is high, all you do is bow and make a few fake apologise.
What a joke.
3 ( +3 / -0 )
The amount of forigners living in Japan as of 2015 was 2.23 Million.
The current population of Japan is 126,451,398
For a developed country with a population of 126,451,398 accepting such a small amount of refugees is quite frankly appalling.
As for the issue of broader immigration, it seems that the government understands that more immigration is needed in order to prevent some of the dropping population issues that Japan is experiencing.
However, the general attitude towards accepting foreigners seems to be one that has inherent undertones of racism, for instance Japan offers visas and training visas for workers to do the crappier jobs that no one else wants to do and then takes advantage of them by withholding their pay or making them work excessive hours.
Foreigners are not entitled to the same anti-discrimination laws that Japanese citizens are.
The way people respond to immigration is also with fear, a fear that somehow the pure Japanese bloodline and culture will be diluted and destroyed should more foreigners suddenly come to Japan.
If you dump all of the immigrants in a certain area then of course you will end up with cultural divides as well as many other issues, but there is no reason that more immigrants cannot come to Japan to work and live.
I am quite frankly sick of the arrogant pro Japanese everything attitude people are brainwashed with here, everything in Japan is far superior in design and manufacture to other places, everything in Japan is unique, its simply not true and I think Japan really needs to wake up to itself on the worlds stage.
This country has a lot of positives going for it but at the same time its riddled with issues just like other countries more foreigners can only make this country more adaptable and open in my opinion and I think Japan is in dire need of a renaissance.
-9 ( +2 / -11 )
I wouldn't mind knowing what other countries have had to pay compensation to comfort women in the past, this does seem to crop up a lot and in.the grand scheme of things everyone seems to focus solely on Japan and no other countries. I think they definitely had comfort women and it was probably swept under the rug but at the same time other countries probably had similar practices.
I think the UN should focus more on teaching Japanese kids more about the history of WW2, most Japanese people don't know what changi was or about any of the past transgressions of their own country which is more disturbing in my opinion.
10 ( +11 / -1 )
More meat for the grinder i guess.
If Japan really wanted to improve things for workers and the economy they would introduce performance based pay, have a more fluid job market and raise wages.
Who the hell wants to go out and work for a slaves wage with no opportunity for career development.
Even if you get a job where you can progress it doesn't matter how good you are just how long you've had your ass in a seat for the same company and how much profit adjusting you will lie about with the rest of the yes men.
4 ( +4 / -0 )
What a load of rubbish.
Throwing things into nice neat little boxes would seem to be a Japanese national pastime.
4 ( +5 / -1 )
Oh also the lunch time allocated is not enough and their should be a recess break as well in the morning.
I stopped eating the school lunches the lunch centre provided as they had too much rice and barely any vegetables or protein they also arrived cold, sat in the lunch room for an hour and were served cold.
I bring my own bento to school now and am far better health and taste wise.
If something is not good and no one says anything then the same garbage continues the school lunch is a perfect example.
2 ( +2 / -0 )