COVID-19 INFORMATION What you need to know about the coronavirus if you are living in Japan or planning a visit.

warispeace comments

Posted in: U.S. approves Google request to use segment of U.S.-Asia undersea cable See in context

So will these private profit making and tax avoiding companies have to pay for any of the infrastructure that public money built?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Meals on wheels See in context

This is one company benefiting from the virus.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Main points of Japan's ¥108 tril emergency package See in context

Bringing back manufacturing

So companies that up and fled Japan seeking a cheaper labour force and lower labour and environmental standards, requiring tax payers pick up the bill for the suddenly unemployed, now get rewarded for bringing back their processing and manufacturing, again leaving the burden of the newly laid off workers for someone else to carry.

This is clearly another example of the Abe government's ongoing class warfare, using this virus shock to further enrich the wealthy.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Abe unveils massive coronavirus stimulus worth 20% of GDP See in context

Though the details aren't many, based on what has come out, I don't see how this will help small and mid-size companies, which employ the majority of workers.

1) Social Security and tax deferrals just push the pain off for a while.

2) Even with a non-interest loan, which businesses want to go further into debt with no revenues for a while and likely lower revenues post-virus as the recovery will take time?

3) To qualify for full "9/10 wage assistance, the employee has to not work at all and even then, "9/10" is capped at 8,800/day. So if its a 21 day month, that covers roughly 185,000. It's great if all the workers are already low-wage workers, but if they get a decent salary, the business still has to make up the difference or cut their salaries to subsistence levels, increasing the already large number of precarious workers. When employees work a few hours a day, the assistance goes down.

Overall, this means businesses need to top-off wages to keep employees and continue to pay rent and some other operational cost and possibly also pay back loans for capital costs. Without rent moratoriums and some grants, I can't see how many small business will be incentivised to keep going. Something more along the lines of Germany will be needed.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Posted in: 92 from Chicago let in at Narita airport without being asked to self-isolate See in context

What is fascinating is that the State of Emergency law retains the sovereignty of citizens, by only granting authorities the power to strongly request people follow a course of action. In this sense, Japan is far more democratic than countries imposing martial law and moving the police and military to enforce it.

And yet, the death penalty and state secrets laws grant the government extreme authority.

Oh for the love of contradiction.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan's imperial household on full alert against coronavirus See in context

The agency has also stopped accepting volunteer cleaners

Volunteer cleaners!! Will the folks at Hello Work accept this activity for those on the dole?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Tokyo gov't urges people to refrain from cherry blossom parties in parks See in context

This virus slows over-consumption, with benefits to our natural environment, such as cleaner air and, in the case of fewer hanami gatherings, less enduring plastic garbage, which symbolizes or reflects Japan's active rejection of fragility and impermanance, or perhaps its embrace of Shumpeter's idea of creative destruction rather than wabi-sabi.

6 ( +18 / -12 )

Posted in: Japan pushes to remove Fukushima references from U.N. exhibition See in context

It's surprising the nuclear village gang don't try to replace those panels with ones showing how nature is now flourishing in the no-go zone. Or there could be panels with Mighty Atom leading the charge for the next oh so green and clean nuclear revolution.

Sorry @englisc aspyrgend, am I also being ignorant and irrational because I think nuclear energy has this little waste disposal issue that won't seem to go away many half-lives from now?

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Posted in: Man on train pushes emergency button after passenger without mask coughs See in context

When logic and proportion

Have fallen sloppy dead

And the White Knight is talking backwards

And the Red Queen's off with her head

Remember what the Dormouse said

Mask your head

Mask your head

So let's think about the hysteria of the button pusher...

Hee is worried when there is still only a slight chance of meeting someone infected among the millions of people in Tokyo, and then not everyone develops symptoms and only 5% of cases are critical and less than 2% of mainly those with weaker immune systems sadly pass away. This is roughly equal to dying from a head injury after stumbling and falling when someone panics and pushes the train emergency stop button.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Researchers to conduct major Japan ocean microplastics survey See in context

The old delay by research strategy. Nice! As if others in the world don't know the effect already. Time for bolder action by the J-governments. Does the ban on free plastic bags mean stores can just charge a yen or two? And only a 25% reduction by 2030. The infamous too little too late move Japan could patent.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Thunberg keen to visit Japan in 2020 See in context

The standard I expect of public figures is tolerance and acceptance of different views. That's what being an adult means.

It's telling that you show little tolerance and acceptance of Greta's views and actions.

-1 ( +18 / -19 )

Posted in: Thunberg keen to visit Japan in 2020 See in context

Here we have a young person facing the truth of the climate emergency and acting when too many adults, including some of the commentators here, do far too little or even participate in denialism. Yet she is scrutinized by the likes of Burning Bush and held to standards far beyond what is expected of political leaders, corporate heads, the media... Give Greta a break and either cheer her on or just keep all the hating to yourself.

-3 ( +31 / -34 )

Posted in: Japanese crown prince, wife begin tour of Poland See in context

Should these symbols of the Japanese state be legitimizing the extreme right, authoritarian government of Poland with such a visit? Though maybe that is the message from the Abe government, which itself would lurch further to the right given the chance.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Posted in: Ivanka Trump calls on G20 leaders to prioritize women empowerment See in context

She also said research shows that states with higher female participation are less likely to use violence or military force to resolve international conflict.

Did she bother to think this through? The US has a high labour force participation rate for women and just loves the use of violence to create international conflict.

And is she talking about promoting "participation" in the race-to-the-bottom, sweat-shop industry that produced her line of clothing?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Gov't to urge firms to help employees undergoing fertility treatment See in context

If we consider historically the extreme population rise in Japan and how this led to the colonization of neighbouring countries and war and to Japan's continued subservience to the US Post WWII to sustain access to food and other resources, then the government would be wise to promote depopulation to a level of much greater self-sufficiency. Though this is not a call to maintain the draconian neoliberal labour standards.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Posted in: Kao's #beWhite campaign leaves firm red-faced See in context

It launched the #beWHITE project on Tuesday as part of marketing efforts for a detergent, urging an equitable distribution of chores at home.

The terminology deserves scrutiny, but also shouldn't we be questioning the legitimacy of any huge corporation that rails against unequitable distribution? It would be interesting to know what the pay ratio of CEO to average employee is and if the company uses cheap Asian labour to expand profits. Also, to what extent does the company redistribute its profits sufficiently to address the environmental damages caused in the production and use of its products, or is this cost not born by the company? Just how off-white is this corporation that moralizes about home life to boost profits?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: Regional bank in Japan battles ultra-low rates with wine bar, sea urchins See in context


Organic growth is a very slow and stable way to grow, as your 10% yearly revenue increase suggests, but I can't see any downside to a loan with the low interest rates here in Japan and no penalty for early repayment. For cash flow for some businesses this is essential. Also, why operate a company with your own money if you can do this with the banks?

As for this news, seems like a smart idea for these banks to diversify and at the same time support their region.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan's labor shortage eats away at back-breaking work culture See in context

Interesting how this article doesn't mention wage decline and precarity under the abenomics approch to neo-liberalism.

The link below has some charts and statistics that can provide some structural content to the far too anecdotal and cheer-leading tone of the news article.

15 ( +17 / -2 )

Posted in: U.N. report on global warming carries life-or-death warning See in context

Burning Bush writes

The scientific "community" has been wrong countless times in history, and they're wrong again.

And you are right because...? Sorry, but denial is not a rational and evidence based counter-argument. Nor is an appeal to tradition (wrong in the past so wrong now) acceptable as it is acknowledged as one of the most common logical fallacies. So what is your argument? Why not point out specifically where these 6,000 members of the scientific community have got it wrong and offer proof, and not just that from a handful of scientists flush with fossil fuel company money.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Posted in: 'No chance!' says Troussier as Japan play Russian roulette See in context

Manager Nishino announced the list of players of the squad for the World Cup.

But let's be realistic. 5 were chosen by Kirin, 5 by Adidas, 4 by Family Mart, 4 by Mizuho and 3 by Dentsu (one each by Kawahara, Ozawa and Juji).

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: 10 everyday tips to cut greenhouse gas emissions in Japan See in context

OK, let's get more serious, considering the true conditions climate scientists report. Here are the needed "lifestyle" changes if we actually wish to address GG emissions:

1) Have fewer or no children and pets

2) Eat little or no meat, especially beef

3) Switch from an automobile to a bicycle

4) Change our political "lifestyle" of voting for politicians who don't even talk about climate change in major speeches and politicians who use our taxes to invest in fossil fuel developments and in fossil fuel guzzling weapon systems instead of alternative energy technologies.

5) Get in the habit of joining groups such as and put more pressure on politicians and industry to do the right thing, such as financial institution divestment from fossil fuels.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: LDP unveils election pledges, including Constitution revision plan See in context

Of course these LDP election pledges fail to address the two most critical issues of our time, climate change and inequality, and yet this antiquated lot is likely to return to power. What does this say about the state of civic awareness and engagement in Japan?

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Posted in: Gunman kills 59, injures 500, in Las Vegas concert attack; Trump calls it 'act of pure evil' See in context

Authorities are not calling this terrorism, but can't we say that this is industry and government sponsored terrorism, since these institutions, by mass producing and selling and by not seriously banning assault weapons, directly give licence to killers?

22 ( +23 / -1 )

Posted in: China, Japan extract combustible ice from seafloor See in context

bass4funk Today 07:12 am JST

I agree, but until we find a permanent and alternate fuel source, the world will continue to use fossil fuel, that's just how it's going to be.

The news is not whether we will use or not, this is about research and investment, the funds for which should not be going into further fossil fuel extraction but rather into renewable energy.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: To ask or not to ask: The etiquette and law of using convenience store restrooms in Japan See in context

Victimizing convenience stores. This is raw.

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Posted in: Clinton tears into Trump on taxes See in context

The lying war criminal vs. the lying shady tax evader: a script right out of Hollywood. Only problem is that there are life and (lots of death) implications for whichever is elected as the head of the US imperialist project.

-9 ( +7 / -16 )

Posted in: By 2030, there will be no full-time employees, report speculates See in context

This assumes that something won't change, which is neoliberal capitalism. But the contradictions of capital are already becoming very difficult to manage and as we are informed above "Freedom to change implies an obligation to change – fast."

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Panel proposes 1st changes in 100 years to penal code for sex offenders See in context

When they pass and actually enforce the law fairly, then we can say they've done something.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Posted in: Inspecting the troops See in context

So nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles are just "fear cards" to you? Hmmm...more like it's reality, Kim is going to keep this up until at least the end of the US election, and hopefully no one gets hurt or worse killed because of it.

With your Americentrism, why would you understand that the with the far superior weaponry that the US, Japan and South Korea have, the state that is under the greater threat is NK.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Last-minute cancellation by Chinese tour groups driving businesses crazy See in context

So the question with "dotakyan" is whose heads are going to roll?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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