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JeffLeeJun. 19, 2013 - 11:06AM JST
That link is 14 years old. Um, nice try. How many bombs have the Taliban put on airliners since then? The answer: zero. The Taliban don't even care about the West. Their activities are confined to Afghanistan and the surrounding region, which has NO strategic importance to the US. "You walk away from Afghanistan, you walk away with nothing," an analyst once said.
Who were they funded by?
Mainly wealthy Saudis and other members of the Al-Qeada, generally oil money, and a few Muslims in the West.
No you didn't. Al-Queda has been most strongly concentrated in Saudi Arabia and on that peninsula. So please, tell us all about the US military invasion of Saudi Arabia, then.
I agree the Taliban are a nasty, nasty bunch. But how do its policies on girl's education in rural Afghanistan, etc. pose a threat to the West, exactly?
Posted in: U.S., Taliban to start talks on ending Afghan war
JeffLeeJun. 19, 2013 - 09:48AM JST
The Taliban were never a threat to the West. George Junior's war has been a horrid waste of lives and taxpayers money.
The 9.11 bombers were wealthy Saudis. 7.7 bomber were middle-class British Muslims. Wage your "war on terror" on them, the real terrorists, not a bunch of tribesmen who couldnt find NY or London a map anyway.
JeffLeeJun. 18, 2013 - 10:32AM JST
Well, Dog, true, there are serious structural issues, but in macroeconomic terms, Japan's economy has fared pretty well over the last decade. I would refer you to this article from the Economist,
"A Grossly Distorted Picture"
Posted in: Stocks close 2.73% higher
JeffLeeJun. 18, 2013 - 08:55AM JST
Take 2 countries with the same standard living, say, Germany and Austria. Germany's GDP would be maybe 4 times bigger than Austria's, but only because its population is 4 times the size. The difference is not due to Germany having a superior economy. The difference reflects the different sizes of the 2 economies. And the size of the economies is based on the size of the populations, or the number of working people.
Japan's population is getting smaller in size, with fewer working people. So even if it maintains zero growth in GDP, it can still attain positive growth per capita, which is a common measure of living standards.
JeffLeeJun. 18, 2013 - 07:15AM JST
GDP, in aggregate terms, doesn't need to grow, as Japan has a shrinking population, a key fact the pundits conveniently leave out.
Interesting to note that countries that suffered "demographic crises" - China in the 1980s and Russia in the 1990s, have since seen skyrocketing growth in personal income.
JeffLeeJun. 18, 2013 - 06:29AM JST
Not sure how knowledgeable the writer is, but it seems she's not making a good distinction between long-term interest rates and short term rates.
I would see the rise in LT rates as a good thing, since they reflect economic outlook, and can indicate growth, more private investment, optimism.
As for the ST rates, these can be easily controlled by the BOJ and are directly linked to the rates on loans and mortgages,
Further, the reason for the rise in JGB rates, apparently, is because more of the institutions are switching out of bonds and into the stock market....and that indeed is a good thing, given the markets' sluggish performance throughout the post-bubble. I daresay you need capital investment to support any future growth.
Posted in: Abe's true test: rising government bond yields
JeffLeeJun. 17, 2013 - 09:11PM JST
**this whole house of cards will come crashing down **
I'll be holding you to that, so stick around this board. I've been hearing the "japan is unsustainable" worldview for years now. Just one problem: none of the predictions have actually panned out.
JeffLeeJun. 17, 2013 - 09:05PM JST
It's a flawed argument. Japan doesn't need tax revenue to service its debt. It issues its own currency and can just credit institutions to pay down its fiscal debt in that currency.
Healthcare costs? In many Western countries, the average immigrant sponsors around four family members, most of whom don't work full time.
Posted in: Swelling numbers of working immigrants would also help expand Japan’s tax rolls—which the country desperately needs to address its unsustainable debt load. Social security and healthcare spending would fall relative to GDP. And the tax burden would spread out over more workers, boosting consumption.
JeffLeeJun. 17, 2013 - 10:09AM JST
Do I sense a paradox here? the status cites "protection," "preservation," blah, blah, But in Japan that status invariably means vast hordes of tourists, turning a once-natural spot into Shinjuku Station at rushhour.
In Shiretoko, Hokkaido, the trail was backed up several kilometers of "hikers" just like the Tomei Expressway at U-turn time. The scene was farcical when I saw it on the TV news. Cheek-to-jowl hikers moving...nowhere.
Posted in: UNESCO to formally add Mt Fuji as World Heritage site this week
JeffLeeJun. 17, 2013 - 06:01AM JST
Olympus redux here? Gaijin (The Wall St. Journal) broke the Seibu sleaze story, forcing Japanese investigators to investigate. They found corporate records falsified by a megalomaniac. Don't think he went to jail, wasn't his sentence suspended? And fined....wait for it....5 million yen!!!!
Cerebus may not be angels, but hopefully they can bring some transparency to Japan Inc. style corporate sleaze.
Non-core lines? Maybe those spur lines that run out to the amusement facilities, etc.?
Posted in: Cerberus questions Seibu management ahead of annual meeting
JeffLeeJun. 16, 2013 - 06:17AM JST
A cool idea, but you really need separated speakers for the stereo effect. Might be good for a camper van.
Posted in: Space-saving compact audio system
JeffLeeJun. 15, 2013 - 07:06PM JST
Japan has that resources.
What resources? Japan has the highest fiscal debt per GDP than any industrialized country in the world, with a pension and healthcare system facing financial crisis due to its demographics.
Do you think the govt should cut our pension and healthcare to pay for this 8 billion dollar tunnel? Or stop reconstruction in Tohoku?
Posted in: Japan mulls hosting global collider project
JeffLeeJun. 15, 2013 - 12:42PM JST
It's a Keynesian stimulus measure. Billions of dollars of public money for jobs and national prestige.
I read that some of the funds for Tohoku reconstruction would be diverted for its construction.
JeffLeeJun. 15, 2013 - 07:13AM JST
Global investors now see US stimulus measures that are becoming more of a problem than a solution.
I think you've got it the wrong way around. The fear of the end of stimulus is what largely triggered the big declines on the TSE. The investors want the stimulus to continue.
The gain shows overseas investors are still buying U.S. debt
Which means the foreigners continue to have plenty of confidence in the US economy.
Posted in: Foreign holdings of U.S. Treasury debt drop in April
JeffLeeJun. 15, 2013 - 07:06AM JST
He's apologizing for creating "confusion"? No, he should apologize for lying and staging a cover-up.
To whit: "NPB previously denied this year’s increase in home runs had anything to do with changes to the baseball."
Posted in: Japan baseball boss apologizes for ball switch
JeffLeeJun. 15, 2013 - 06:02AM JST
Ozawa calling for cooperation and unity is like Mussolini calling for compassion and tolerance.
Posted in: Opposition parties need to join forces so that a viable alternative to the LDP can be created.
JeffLeeJun. 14, 2013 - 09:23AM JST
Fantastic!. Those things are perfect for harassing the noisy Bosuzoku or campaigning politicians in your neighborhood.
Posted in: Toy ride
JeffLeeJun. 14, 2013 - 07:17AM JST
I was thinking of the Viz comic character, Johnny Fartpants. His favorite dinner was egg curry and cabbage water. Why not make it cabbage wine, eh?
Posted in: Get your daily dose of vegetables with cabbage wine from Yamanashi
JeffLeeJun. 13, 2013 - 08:49PM JST
Cabbage wine, eh? Would go well with egg curry. I could then sell my emissions for a profit as a renewable energy.
JeffLeeJun. 13, 2013 - 08:37PM JST
The Abenomics cynics dismissed the Nikkei when it was climbing, calling it hot air. Now that it's crashing, they're pointing to it as solid proof they were right. Hello?
The real economy is still holding up. 3.5 percent growth ain't bad.
Posted in: Nikkei enters bear market as stocks dive 6.35%
Jun. 19, 2013 - 11:14PM JST
This sounds perfect for the kind of foreigner that seems to be attracted to Japan in…
Posted in: Tokyo: 5 freebies from shrines to 'cool' Japan
Jun. 19, 2013 - 11:12PM JST
to somewhat quote Ben Franklin - Any society that would give up a little liberty to…
Posted in: Is Edward Snowden who blew the whistle on vast surveillance programs run by the National Security Agency that trawl through telephone and Internet records a hero or traitor?
Jun. 19, 2013 - 11:11PM JST
an Australasian center of excellence for science and technology
They've developed some very advanced barbie equipment.
Posted in: Japanese student named Brisbane ambassador
Jun. 19, 2013 - 11:10PM JST
Sometimes you want to compose yourself and wipe away the tears brought on by a stirring…
Posted in: Moviegoers upset about Studio Ghibli anime’s trailer after film they came to see
Jun. 19, 2013 - 11:09PM JST
From rice grown and harvested during 2013, the gov't will buy 250,000 tons for the gov't's…
Posted in: TEPCO finds highly toxic strontium in Fukushima plant groundwater