Ishiwara's past comments

  • 1

    Ishiwara

    I personally like everything to be smoke-free, but there is no such thing as being "behind." The laws are what they are, and Japan will change them at their pace and how they see fit.

    Just compare it to this headline: "Japan is behind with gun laws. It is still illegal to own guns," and you see what's wrong.

    Posted in: Japan is still way behind in terms of anti-smoking policies, especially measures against secondhand smoke. You can still smoke in a lot of public places in Japan such as office buildings, coffee shops, restaurants and bars.

  • 5

    Ishiwara

    It's not a choice between smoke-free Starbucks and "smokey old kissaten." Japan has a large number of independent excellent coffee shops and smaller local chains that are smokefree. Just one example: Ogawa coffee in Kyoto. Smoke-free and the coffee is real and outstanding.

    Posted in: Japan's dated, smoky cafes unfazed by Starbucks success

  • 2

    Ishiwara

    There is room for both. Starbucks is the MacDonalds of coffee, cheap and bad, but sometimes you need it. The wifi also makes it good for work & study. But Japan has a great range of excellent high-end cafe's where you go and enjoy a coffee, like a good restaurant.

    Posted in: Japan's dated, smoky cafes unfazed by Starbucks success

  • 2

    Ishiwara

    Well, it's about time!

    Posted in: Japan, China officials hold informal talks on preventing armed conflict

  • -1

    Ishiwara

    @kaynide

    Most japanese are perfectly aware corruption is a larger issue than just some individuals. The problem is ordinary voters dont know what to do about it. They once voted for the DPJ but that didnt end well. What's left? The communist party? Isshin no kai?

    Posted in: Justice minister undone by cheap paper fan

  • 6

    Ishiwara

    It was pretty weird to see most comments on yahoo japan basically saying it was Hashimoto who came across as rude for being unwilling to listen and engage in discussion, whereas it seems clear it was Sakurai who started yelling and being very rude from the beginning.

    Posted in: Hashimoto, Zaitokukai chairman get into shouting match

  • 1

    Ishiwara

    @NathalieB

    If you want to outlaw it, it would technically mean you cannot take a photograph of your own daughter in bathing suit. Oh God! THIS is where it just feels like youre banging your head against a wall! Let me try and put this as simply as I can: Take pic of own child for family album = OK. Take pic of child and put it on DVD to sell to creepy men to whack off to = bad. Kapiche? Can you see the subtle difference there?

    Yes, of course. But my point is how are you doing to define this in legal terms? Would it be allowed to put a photo of your daughter in bathing suit on a blog? If answer is yes, then you would in legal terms have to allow other websites to put similar photos online. Can you share your pictures with friends who maybe also have kids? If yes, then how do you prosecute someone who is sharing photos of his/her daughter in bathing suit online, or via DVD's to his/her friends?

    To give a different example of how absurd things can get in the law: In the US (where everybody is hypersensitive about everything) there have been cases of girls taking naked selfies and sharing it, then finding themselves prosecuted for distribution of child porn.

    So my point is simple: OK and Bad might be easy to understand, but how to put that into law is a different thing, and way more complicated.

    Posted in: The fuel for Japan’s pedophiles

  • -1

    Ishiwara

    This woman, and a lot of people in these comments are missing a very simple fact:

    This "junior idol" genre is not kiddie-porn and is not illegal because none of them are naked. Obviously the makers of this genre know exactly what they're doing and are pushing the limits. We might find this morally problematic, but it is legally very difficult to define this and do anything about it if they are not naked.

    If you want to outlaw it, it would technically mean you cannot take a photograph of your own daughter in bathing suit.

    Posted in: The fuel for Japan’s pedophiles

  • -2

    Ishiwara

    It is still not really 100% clear why the IJA treated pow's so badly during WW2.

    For one thing, the IJA treated pow's during the Russo-Japanese war and WW1 extremely well.

    So the idea that it is all about the Japanese samurai honor code, saying that thus Japanese culture led them to see soldiers who surrendered as worth nothing, is not 100% true. On the other hand, Japanese soldiers at the time were indeed told things like this, so there is something to it. But this samurai talk and not surrendering was only instilled in the IJA in the 1930's. Samurai in conflict during the Sengoku and Bakumatsu periods often surrendered or changed sides.

    One thing that is often forgotten is that the IJA had a very bad logistical system (and lots of ships were sunk by US submarines), meaning there wasn't any food around, also not for the Japanese soldiers. A large number of them died of malnutrition. So the pow's were last in the pecking order. In my opinion, that doesn't excuse it, since it is the responsibility of the army to care for their prisoners.

    There is also a bit of a myth about "the Japanese POW camp" as being exceptionally cruel and bad torture camps. Some surely were, but although I surely wouldn't want to be in one, some POW camps were actually not that bad, with food around and pow's mostly running their own affairs. So it seemed to have depended on the situation.

    Also, the German treatment of Soviet POW's was probably worse. They just put them in a large field with a fence around and let them starve. Some turned to cannibalism. Some 3.3 million died.

    Posted in: Ex-U.S. POWs visit Japan, recall horrors of war

  • 5

    Ishiwara

    Good that the J-government is doing this. Good to hear these POW's stories and their ideas today.

    I highly recommend "The Railway Man": a true story about a British former POW who meets his former guard and interrogator.

    Posted in: Ex-U.S. POWs visit Japan, recall horrors of war

  • 11

    Ishiwara

    I guess a first female PM would be kind of cool, but I'm more worried that it is becoming the norm that every PM is the offspring of a PM.

    Posted in: Obuchi being touted as Japan's first female PM

  • 2

    Ishiwara

    Here's an idea I want to hear people's opinion about:

    Sometimes I think that to a large degree studying English in Japan is similar to how people used to study classical Chinese in the old days. It wasn't for actual use, since there were hardly Chinese around, it was only seen part of education and becoming a cultured person.

    That's why the system is set up with the examination as goal, not to actually use it. Example: I've seen people in companies study for the TOEIC test (which is interestingly a Japanese product) in order to make promotion in the company. When I asked them if their company did any business abroad or in any form with foreigners, the answer was "no."

    I know this is a generalization, and there are plenty of educated Japanese (especially scientists, diplomats etc) who actually use it and speak English fine.

    Posted in: What’s wrong with English education in Japan? Pull up a chair

  • 0

    Ishiwara

    Japan has to protect itself from the erratic Bolshewists in Pyongyang and the phlegmatic maffiosi in Beijing.

    Posted in: Japan defense budget request highest ever as Abe boosts military

  • -1

    Ishiwara

    Japan must face up to reality, show sincerity, take concrete actions and make efforts to eliminate political obstacles that affect the development of bilateral relations

    Thank you China for this very clear and concrete roadmap for improving Sino-Japanese relations. LOL

    Posted in: China says no change in policy on improving ties with Japan

  • -1

    Ishiwara

    I dont really get it. According to this article and the UN representative, Japan apologized and set up a fund for compensation. So Japan should do concretely... what?

    Posted in: U.N. issues fresh call to Japan over WWII 'comfort women'

  • 8

    Ishiwara

    The answer is China, followed by North Korea. Very, very obviously.

    Posted in: Who do you think is the biggest threat to peace and regional security in Northeast Asia?

  • 7

    Ishiwara

    This year's propaganda campaign was pretty good. We can't wait till the next campaign comes!

    Posted in: China wraps up anti-Japan propaganda campaign

  • 10

    Ishiwara

    Strange survey; everybody knows Japan is still good, but loosing its edge in high-tech to South Korea and the U.S. among others.

    Here is my list, for what it is worth:

    1. Customer service
    2. Public transport
    3. Food (even Michelin agrees)
    4. Alcoholic drinks & drinking culture (except beer, which is just OK, but strangely lacks variety)
    5. Public safety
    6. AV
    7. Toilets
    8. Pens and all kinds of stationary (Japan wins hands down, just compare Loft with Office Depot...)
    9. Women's fashion
    10. Men's crazy haircuts (nothing to like, but you have to hand it to them)

    Posted in: 10 things Japan does better than anywhere else

  • 10

    Ishiwara

    Does the PRC have any shame at all?

    China might learn from Germany's neighbors and accept Japan's apologies and praise Japan's positive contributions to the world since 1945.

    Posted in: China uses D-Day anniversary to praise Germany, slam Japan

  • 9

    Ishiwara

    When will this era of trousers stopping ten inches above the shoes end? It looks clownish.

    Posted in: What you'll be wearing next fall-winter

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