Velius comments

Posted in: Japan should brace for 'leaderless era' as U.S. turns inward, PM adviser says See in context

@Desert Tortoise

I think you may be fooling yourself. Mr. Biden calls Xi Jinping a "thug". There is no love. The pivot to the Pacific, meaning the movement of forces from the Atlantic to the Pacific to counter China, was begun during Mr. Obama's second term of office. A lot of new weapons now coming on line entered development ten or twelve years ago as part of that pivot to the Pacific.

It’s indeed a worrying aspect of a Biden presidency. As much as Trump was disastrous on many fronts, perhaps one of his best qualities was that he had NO taste for starting any wars. People might not remember, but during the 2016 campaign there were some scuffles in Syria and Clinton vowed to immediately enforce a no fly zone (i.e., to shoot down Russian airplanes). If Clinton had won back then, there’s a chance we would have had WWIII already.

I dread further US military involvement in the Pacific and enforcing of its increasingly absurd claims of influence there.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Suga says Japan not looking to form 'Asian NATO' to contain any specific country See in context


Well said Suga. QUAD is not an "Asian NATO". It is a group of nations that, at its core, believes in Rule of Law, freedom and democracy

These lofty terms are increasingly meaningless in a world where the supposed foremost champion of them (the US) descends into lawless anti-democratic authoritarian rules, and increasingly breaks international law and increments (Paris accord, Iran agreement, NATO responsibilities, strategic nuclear disarmament, the list goes on).

The faster the world finds and switches to a new framework of prototypical national governance, the better - one not subject to the whims of gerrymandered voter districts, voter suppression, an uneducated public, indoctrinating television that claims to not be news (so as to not break broadcasting laws) yet is still allowed to keep the word “news” in its name (guess who), thus making a wide swathe of the population firmly entrenched in deeply extremist and unhinged right-wing views that have no basis in reality, and finally that is not subject to disinformation campaigns online by hostile nations.

And, sadly, so far the leader in this game of a succeeding world order is frankly China - with its effective governance (might not agree with the methods, but no one can deny their effectiveness), wildly successful strategic soft power (belt and road initiative etc), and efficient use of “bootstrapping” to upgrade its technology and military capabilities (stealing/adopting advanced nations’ technology and adapting it rather than building from scratch).

As much as one would like Japan to play a significant role here, the fact that it’s still under the sway of the US means not only that its influence will be ineffective but also that its fate, for good or ill, is largely intertwined with that of its supposed protector and guarantor.

-3 ( +14 / -17 )

Posted in: Over 2 mil people used Japan's travel subsidy campaign in 1st month See in context

@P Smith

Would you like your 50 yen back?

Sure, so long as you pay your 40% subsidized travel fees, on the order of a couple of man. Thanks bud.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Akihabara saying goodbye to landmark as giant Sega arcade announces it’s closing for good See in context


If I'm not mistaken, this building, along with another right up the street from here, were both home to MASSIVE Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) shops. They both vanished and these types of shops opened instead.

Now, there is nowhere to see the newest Amateur Radios on the market in person.

You can still find everything in the maze of side streets and upper floors of seemingly indescript buildings. Akihabara isn’t just the main central street.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan reports record new coronavirus infections for 3rd straight day See in context

Guaranteed many of these are from Go To campaign non-Tokyoites swarming to/through Tokyo. GUARANTEED. Yet Tokyo pays the price. Time to move out. This is ridiculous.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Posted in: Abe faces backlash after Tokyo residents excluded from Go To travel campaign See in context

Why does the government lack basic mathematical sense? Tokyo might have the highest number of infections but it also has the highest population! If you normalize the infection count by population it's FAR more in line with other prefectures! So this move is just nonsensical and only foments resentment amongst the most populous prefecture! Simply ridiculous! Just scrap the entire campaign!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: U.S. downgrades rating of Japan's efforts against human trafficking See in context


The story is about Japan not America! Defect, Denile, Shogani.

When the accuser is America then YES the article is about America!

Who cares what a morally corrupt country has to say about.... anything?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: U.S. downgrades rating of Japan's efforts against human trafficking See in context

@Michael Machida

This story is about Japan, no?

If a known schoolyard bully points to a random kid to make some accusation, will you blindly follow the finger and say “oh yeah!! Attack him!” ??

The US has concentration camps for refugees from Southern American climate-induced crop failures that migrated north to get better jobs but fell victim to internal US politics. Concentration camps. So when such a country points to another to accuse its human rights record, do you blindly follow the finger? Can the person pointing have any credibility to make such pronouncements?

So no, when an article describes the US accusing other countries of failing human rights, the issue is really about the US. Why is it doing this now? Deflection? Distraction? The elephant in the room can not be ignored.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: U.S. downgrades rating of Japan's efforts against human trafficking See in context


This, and the other comments along this vein, are ad hominem attacks, i.e.., a personal attack on an opponent's character rather than providing valid commentary on the topic.

The US is by definition not a “person”, you can’t attack the US’s “character” (taken in the sense of a human personality). All such criticisms are indeed precisely about its policies and actions as a country. So, fair game!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Tokyo running out of beds and gear, medical staff say See in context

Even as other countries have locked down borders and ramped up testing, Japan appeared to have side-stepped the kind of mass infections seen elsewhere - an effect some experts say was mostly due to a lack of testing. In the early stages of the epidemic, Japan was also weighing whether to postpone the Summer Olympics, a decision that eventually came in late March.

So now this is being openly admitted? It’s simply criminal!!

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Experts warn of health care collapse in Japan if virus keeps spreading See in context


Please, Japan, lock it down. We're locked down for a couple of months at least and only denting the curve a bit. NYC is going to go through hell this month. Idiot states will follow and it will be their own damn fault at this point. Why Japan is trending closer to red states than blue at this point is kind of beyond me.

This is the kind of hysteria that isn't going to help anyone. You don't even live here! Everyone on this site should look at some COVID-19 tracker online, e.g. the one by Bing, it's pretty good. Zoom out on the map. You see the giant clusters in New York, Spain/Italy, China, right? Big population centres, right? Would expect to have explosive COVID-19 cases, indeed! OK so how about Japan, it's a very densely populated area right? OH LOOK, THE RED CIRCLE IS SUPER TINY.

People. Wake up. 95% of the crisis here is all in your MINDS. There is no explosive growth in Japan, period! Japan had the virus months before N. America/Europe. The hospitals in those countries are full, makeshift clinics are being made in New York/Europe/China etc. after only a few WEEKS of infection, but in Japan, there is just no equivalent crisis after MONTHS. Period! It is an objective fact! The hospitals have beds available! Regardless of what you think about the amount of testing, the simple fact is that if we were having tens of thousands of cases as in some of the other countries, since the virus arrived in Japan way, way before those countries, we would have gotten it really bad here, I mean deaths in the thousands as in China, overflowing hospitals, all that.

But we simply are not seeing any of it. And what is with this burning desire to close down society? Is this some kind of mass hysteric death cult you all have? You want to shut down civilization with no endgame plan or objective criterion for when to reopen it other than "get rid of the virus" (not going to happen)? Been watching too much Walking Dead have we? Been itching for some good old fashioned pre-modern society life?

Look, COVID-19 is a fact of life in our world now. There is no putting the genie back in the bottle. It is just too easily transmitted. If we all quarantine now, all it does is delay the time when the virus starts spreading again. It's not like by shutting down society we will have it magically disappear. It will linger, and when we reopen our doors, it will spread again to those who haven't yet been exposed to it. It's a simple fact. The sooner we realize this, the better. Sure, we can have some measures to prevent people from gathering in large groups and especially in crowded indoor areas, perhaps slow the overall rate of exposure and hence burden on the healthcare system at any given time, but We. Can. Never. Stop. It. It's our neighbour now, and the sooner we get that in our heads, the faster we'll eradicate the hysteria and sick apocalyptic yearning so many of you seem to have.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Posted in: Warnings fail to stop Japanese crowds from viewing cherry blossoms See in context

Alright, so if this is really such a huge risk these people are taking it should mean that within a few days to 1-2 weeks we should see a huge uptick in new virus cases right?

And if not, will you all pledge to sign your apologies in another article at that time?

My money is on no big spike in new cases. The nice thing is that this is not a debatable opinion - either it happens or it doesn’t. So let’s all put in our chips!

And if you don’t want to, please don’t be an armchair epidemiologist ok? Keep your sensationalist paranoiac overreactions to yourselves. :)

Everyone is prognosticating an apocalypse in Japan, because the government and people are supposedly careless (despite heavy use of masks which, if you didn’t know, does help tremendously to stop the spread of virus - western countries should adopt this rather than disrupt their societies to an absurd degree with “social distancing”). Germany is banning gatherings greater than two people yet in Japan the trains are packed as usual. Where are all the coronavirus cases? You can’t hide all of them, the hospitals would eventually be bursting at the seams. Yet all is well in Japan.

Is everyone living in their own bizarro world? Mark my words, this coronavirus scare will go down in history as the biggest mass delusion in human history.

Sorry went on a tangent. So place your bets people, if you believe in truth and reason! Either the new virus cases soars in Japan or it doesn’t. And if you’re wrong, then please lay off the virus scaremongering.

-8 ( +10 / -18 )

Posted in: Kelly: Ghosn's second-in-charge, now first in firing line See in context


AND WHERE IS SAIKAWA!!! Caught doing the exact same thing that Kelly and Ghosn are accused of but he is free and even able to attend Nissan shareholder meetings. The injustice is clear to everyone except possibly the Japanese.

Exactly, and it's really hard to defend this activity as being anything other than anti-foreigner (won't use the more emotionally charged "r" word, even if it might apply). With complete disregard for basic humanity, even. Many people tend to bash China for its human rights record, but when you see something like this, a supposed developed and democratic country forcing an elderly, polite American with a back problem to sit on the ground in a cold jail cell in a hostage justice system, and later to have lasting symptoms of numbness in his arms and legs... it's just heartbreaking, and simply incomprehensible. Ludicrous, even.

It's coming to the point where I almost can't read these articles anymore, as they make me feel more strongly each time that, as foreigners, we are simply not welcome in this country. It furthermore makes me seriously reconsider whether my efforts to contribute to society here are ultimately in my best long-term interests and safety, given that something like this could happen to any of us. Is it paranoia to consider that a disgruntled coworker, or even neighbour, could flag the police on a bogus suspicion and suddenly to find myself imprisoned in a hostage justice system? Given all of this, and plenty of JT comments regarding exactly such instance (one JT person who tried to stop chikan in the train and ended up himself interrogated by police comes to mind) - maybe not!

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Posted in: Australia reports 1st coronavirus death, a Diamond Princess cruise ship passenger See in context


Also needs to be understood that letting them all off would have risked infecting the population ashore.That's how quarantines work, the goal is to isolate the contageous group from the larger population.

No, it’s patently false to assume that the only two scenarios are “On the ship” vs “Amidst the population”. There is such a thing as quarantining people on land, e.g., in medical centres or residences set aside for this purpose. Indeed some of the Japanese repatriated from China were put in such lodgings; why not the cruise ship passengers? Only because slow-moving Japanese bureaucracy couldn’t handle it. Not because such arrangements were actually impossible to make.

This story about “they were kept on the ship to avoid infecting the population” is just a bizarre story spoonfed to the public by the Japanese government officials early on and needs to be quashed as the false statement and coverup of incompetence that it is.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Woman confirmed as coronavirus case for 2nd time, weeks after initial recovery See in context

I laughed out loud at the anthrax comparison. There really was no other possible comparison that wasn’t as fear-mongering?

Anyway regarding the woman who contracted the virus for an alleged second time, the fact that she presented with a sore throat was a huge indicator that this could have been a false positive. A recent Lancet study of COVID-19 found that only in 5% of cases is a sore throat presented. The major symptoms are fever, shortness of breath, and dry cough.

It’s indeed possible that the test just tripped up because she was infected once earlier. Or, given that we’ve heard so many stories of false negatives (people testing negative several times before finally testing positive) there’s no reason to believe this couldn’t be the related false positive.

It just seems these tests are not that reliable.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

Posted in: Gov't says 2 elderly people from cruise ship have died; another 2 officials infected with coronavirus See in context

Just on the face of it, isn’t it ridiculous that countries have to airlift their citizens out of the petri dish death trap ship? Like, there is a total breakdown of proper infection control protocol and the only recourse is emergency airvac. Yet another shameful stain on the competency of the Japanese government.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Gov't says 2 elderly people from cruise ship have died; another 2 officials infected with coronavirus See in context


japan has allot in common with another country...wonder who that is?

Someone said China but I was thinking North Korea. Saw someone say online once that Japan is like North Korea just with a GDP and it’s really hard to disagree when stuff like this happens.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Posted in: Gov't says 2 elderly people from cruise ship have died; another 2 officials infected with coronavirus See in context

It’s not just the ship, folks. I have a friend who works in a hospital in Tokyo and I’ve heard how a doctor and nurse there both caught COVID19 at a nomikai, and the nurse was still going to work before being quarantined. A colleague of that nurse - who was likely exposed to the virus - is still at work and not using a face mask. The hospital has now stopped accepting new patients (wonder how many hospitals need to get infected before the medical system breaks down). The hospital made local Japanese news but is not showing up here. The virus is indeed spreading and just not being talked about.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Posted in: Gov't says 2 elderly people from cruise ship have died; another 2 officials infected with coronavirus See in context


A missed opportunity here, don't the SDF have bases all over the country, pop up hospitals? NBC suits. One barracks for infected one for non.

Ah but this assumes reason and a willingness to adapt to the circumstances, which Japanese culture sorely lacks.

The SDF quarantine would never fly not because of logistics (your idea is quite sound!) but because they would have to seek permission from the military brass and/or base commander, who wouldn’t want his little manicured garden trampled on (nor his ego to sunlit to infectious diseases experts - hah, civilians! - to dictate how to setup the quarantine) so will just say “it’s impossible” or “nothing can be done”. And then this will trickle back and people will say oh shouganai, Ok, nothing can be done. Give up and go back to the ship and keep spreading the virus.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: How to apprehend a 'chikan' and protect women from being groped on a train See in context

Burst out laughing at the part about firmly grab the best, hold the arms back, etc. As a foreigner, doing any of this is out of the question. Sorry, but my main concern while taking public transit as a foreigner working here is to be as unassuming as possible. It’s bad enough having Japanese men regularly muttering under their breath at me or sighing in exasperation to see me dare want to get on or off the train (even if I do just what anyone else does, they perceive it as cutting them off and rude). Hard enough to need to go the extra mile and be extra unassuming just to be barely as accepted as a normal Japanese person.

So this business about grabbing someone’s belt?! やだ!

19 ( +19 / -0 )

Posted in: Moonstruck: Japanese billionaire's girlfriend applicants top 20,000 See in context

The real question is, how many of the 20,000 actually don’t care about him but want to primarily go around the MOON, thinking, “ahh afterwards if it doesn’t work out I’ll just leave him”. My guess is the majority of them...

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Ghosn case adds to Nissan's financial problems See in context

Among those caught up in that were former CEO Hiroto Saikawa, who stepped down last year after admitting he had received more pay than he was entitled to.

What?! Isn’t this the core of the case against Ghosn? Why isn’t Saikawa arrested and thrown into solitary confinement? How much more of a farce can this possibly be?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Angry Iranians question authorities for concealing truth on plane incident See in context

The fact that Trump’s blundering and criminal assassination of a top Iranian figure to bolster support by his party for his impeachment charges being the ultimate cause of all of this is ever so quickly and conveniently forgotten.

1 ( +11 / -10 )

Posted in: Go grandmaster says computers 'cannot be defeated' See in context

Probably because you didn't criticize a South Korean.

Aaaand the rest of your comment is completely invalidated after this. This article is not about these politics. Funny how some JT’ers can get so riled up about J or SK issues when you’re not even from either of those countries.

I’ve said it before and will say it again - most JT’ers (especially gaijin) should spend tenfold of their efforts being prima donnas here on rather trying to fix the undoubtedly very ample problems in their own home countries (especially Americans) before smugly commenting and judging J issues.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Video game 'Death Stranding' bids to rekindle hope See in context


Thanks for the laugh. Trump and Brexit are an order of magnitude or two more impactful on the world than extremely local Japanese politics, that barely have any effect beyond the borders of Japan. Both Trump and Brexit are products of rampant tribal nationalism that is a serious threat to the human race and globe (vis-a-vis US pullout from Paris).

Pull your head out of that dark place and have a look around the world.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: U.S. exit from climate accord very disappointing: Japan See in context


If you are punching Trump, or America, or China, are punching the wrong target. It's most likely the companies you work for that you aim your throw at.

Yes yes that’s fine and all, but the issue at hand is about the US withdrawal - unilaterally by trump - from the Paris accord which has strict targets and is a solid step towards not ruining the planet.

But also, you do know that Trump is in fact an enabler of big multinational corporations (insofar as any repug-lican is), and is indeed personally profiting from his presidency, and also seriously jeapordizing the planet’s future? Stay focussed on the issue. He’s right now single-handedly doing more damage than any one corporation.

Also - do you work for a company? Yes? Oh and a foreign one indeed? (Else why post on JT?) Then take your own advice and do something about it rather than post on an obscure forum.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Posted in: U.S. Marines parachute into undesignated area during training See in context


Right. That's why we spend billions of dollars to keep forces there. To abandon them. I never understand this logic.

You still believe in a world where the US operates upon principles of international laws and humanitarianism. Two words: Syria. Kurds.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Emperor Naruhito proclaims ascendancy to throne; pledges to fulfill his duty as symbol of the state See in context


a prefer a government for the people by the people, but hey, its not my country.

Umm, about that, you should go check up on your country again. It hasn’t been by the people for the people for a while now.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Posted in: Defying impeachment inquiry, Trump makes charge more certain See in context

They argue their best chance at winning the politics of impeachment is to emulate the just-say-no tactics they used for much of the special counsel's Russia probe and against other investigations launched by Democrats in the House majority.

No, this isn’t some normal strategy and don’t make it sound like it! Rather than “just-say-no”, say it like it is: refusal to provide evidence! If Trump were innocent he could just release the full unedited transcripts, allow his people to be interviewed without qualms. Heck he would even have released his tax returns. His dogged refusal speaks volumes. Guilty, guilty, guilty!

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Posted in: Trump threatens to 'obliterate' Turkish economy over Syria incursion plan See in context


That’s one way of looking at it, there’s another angle, what did we get for being in the Middle East?

Umm ... Oil? The very thing for which the US has been meddling in that region for decades? Also, if the US pulls out of the ME, guess who rolls in? Russia! This is basic geopolitical relations 101. Just because the US retreats to its borders, doesn’t mean other powers won’t do the same. Putin will never rest until Russia’s sphere of influence expands very significantly beyond its own borders. The US has an obligation - to its own self-preservation! - to maintain power balances in the world. Otherwise it will be left behind by China and Russia and devolve to a secondary or tertiary player on the world stage in ALL matters: economic, social, political.

Trump doesn’t need to save himself, he kept his promise like he was supposed to as if Trump had magical powers to stop the Democrats obsession with trying to remove him, lol.

Well about that, an anonymous national security council official came out and said Trump was badly outmaneuvered and basically instantly folded to Erdogan on his call. With the cat out of the bag, Trump scrambled to reverse this using the only way he can - Twitter tirades, and not actual Leadership.

Furthermore, he incriminates himself on live TV by issuing statements (like asking China to meddle in US politics) that are a flagrant violation of the Constitution.

If we stick to the facts - and by that I simply

mean what we can see and hear with our own eyes and ears, the very things Trump is publicly saying - then we can’t avoid concluding that he’s a failed president and has very many things to “defend himself” about.

And then there’s this. “I, in my great and unmatched wisdom”. Not even the worst 20th century dictators had such megalomania! By this statement, Trump is saying that he doesn’t need advisors, that he knows better than anyone, despite his utter failures, both in his business life - endless bankruptcies, biggest loss in private wealth reported in the IRS (let’s not forget that one!) - as well as political life,

There’s just no avoiding the fact that Trump is very dangerous, unstable, and a menace to the US and the world and must be removed from power ASAP. It’s not even a matter of political opinion anymore, it’s a fundamental logical conclusion from just observing his actions the past couple of years.

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