TokyoVP comments

Posted in: Nikkei plunges 9% to 5-year low on panic selling See in context

The US sells around 30,000 cars a year in Japan, while Japan sells about 3 million a year in the US. The auto market is closed in Japan, as are other sectors. Japan's long-running trade surplus, after 26 consecutive years, ended last month as exports to the US dropped 25%....something decades of trade negotiations failed to accomplish.

Talking points for the Bush-Aso Summit:

Bush: Welcome, Taro. We've got a real mess with the financial markets.

Aso: We Japanese want you to fix mess, quickly, for radiant happy Japan.

Aso: Our exports to America dropped 25%, bad for radiant happy Japan.

Bush: Sit down, Taro, I want to share with you an old story my Mom taught me.

Bush: You see, Taro, there once was a golden goose.

Aso: America must fix market, Japan must export for happy radiant Japan.

Bush: Taro, listen, this golden goose laid golden eggs, but then one day...

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Posted in: It's curtains for turbo-capitalism See in context

The new economic paradigm: Pay as you go, no more credit. This will also apply to the balance of trade.

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

And those countries that played the mercantile trade surplus game, decade after decade, will have the most to lose in the future.

As the world heads into deep recession, does anyone in Japan believe they can export their way out of this mess? Thus spoke the Nikkei market today.

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Posted in: Nikkei plunges 9% to 5-year low on panic selling See in context

Say good-bye to the old paradigms.

So, sorry, we can't afford to buy your exports anymore.

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Posted in: Fed OKs request for Japan stake in Morgan Stanley See in context

This is like Japan buying Pebble Beach and Rockefeller Center in the 1980s. The wrong investment at the wrong time. Does anybody believe there is a bright future for investment banking over the mid-term?

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Posted in: New Chief Cabinet Secretary got donations from questionable sources See in context

I guess the Cabinet vetting process is only a matter of who has the fewest bones in the closet to hide?

Perhaps the LDP election strategy is simply to hold the election as quick as possible before the next scandal surfaces?

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Posted in: How do you think Taro Aso will do as prime minister? See in context

Aso is to the LDP as Gorbachev was to the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. He'll be the last LDP Prime Minister.

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Posted in: Aso's last stand See in context

The real story is the end of single party rule in Japan after 60 years.

Henry, explain how Aso is going to reform the LDP?

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Posted in: 4 charged in underwear theft cases in Aichi, Chiba, Kanagawa and Niigata See in context

The fanatical pursuit of perfection...applied by perverts!

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Posted in: Yasukuni See in context

Men who die for their country should be honored. The Vietnam Memorial in Washington does not opine on a just war or if the cause was good. This is the trouble with Yasukuni and the Yushukan museum. There are too many speeches and displays disturbing the hallowed grounds of the souls who died; souls that died probably knowing very well the cause was lost and wrong. How many Americans died in Vietnam believing that their ultimate sacrifice really had meaning...in 1970, 1971, etc.?

Here is the problem of Yasukuni in a nutshell. As you enter the Yushukan, the first locomotive to run on the Thai-Burma railway stands front and center. The West remembers this train from the movie, "The Bridge Over the River Kwai," but Yushukan's display of the locomotive can only praise the accomplishment of building the railway! It stands as the Imperial train of death, a hellish twin to the train cars of death heading to Auschwitz. One can only wonder how many slave laborers and POWs died under the the wooden railroad ties and iron spikes that form the foundation of Yushukan's locomotive?

The politicization of Yasukuni, with the displays that explain that ends justify of the means, is what keeps this issue alive every year. Japan cannot enshrine Tojo and his wartime Cabinet at Yasukuni and expect the rest of the world to mind their own business.

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Posted in: Russian sumo wrestler banned for life See in context

Ok, that was quick...what was the punishment for the Sumo Stable Master who supervised the murder, by bully beating with beer bottles, of a teenage wannabe wrestler earlier this year? Is he still on trial??? Was he banned for life???

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Posted in: Japan ministers, but not premier, visit war shrine See in context

Imagawa: Japan accepted the verdict of the Tokyo Trials when a peace treaty with the US and Allied Powers ended the occupation. If you believe the verdict of the Tokyo Trials should be repealed, spend your time convincing the Diet and Japanese people that Japan should revoke the peace treaty ending WWII. Otherwise, get over it. Japan lost the war and agreed to the consequences of occupation, including trials for war criminals, spelled out in the Potsdam Declaration. Acceptance of war criminals resulting from the proceedings of the Tokyo Trials is a central part of the Peace Treaty. It is sad to see a few influential elites in Japan continue to politicize the hollowed grounds where Japan's war dead are enshrined. Rest in peace, indeed.

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Posted in: Japan ministers, but not premier, visit war shrine See in context

Yukotojo: Your logic on the Tokyo Trials is flawed. Japan accepted the verdict of the Tokyo Trials when the peace treaty with the US was signed and the occupation ended. The fact that Japan paid pensions to war criminal's families simply shows that Japanese politicians ignored the letter and spirit of the peace treaty. Even today, jingoistic talk in the Diet of the Tokyo Trials as "being unfair" or "victor's justice" is countered by sane arguments referring to the reality of the peace treaty and international law. Japan's official government position is that the Tokyo Trials were legal, in accordance with the peace treaty that ended the occupation. The political message of "victor's justice" at Yushukan directly disputes the finality of the peace treaty by promoting the cult of Judge Pal and a "just war" waged by innocent war criminals.

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