cleo's past comments

  • 3

    cleo

    You cannot provoke. You cannot insult the faith of others. You cannot make fun of the faith of others

    But you can. That's free speech. What you cannot do is preach turn the other cheek while punching someone who says something you don't like.

    he said a reaction of some sort was to be expected.

    The correct response to satire you don't like is to treat it with disdain - ignore it. All but a handful of people ignored Charlie Hebdo's satire - they didn't buy the rag. In fact so many people didn't buy it that it was about to go under.

    Posted in: Pope on Charlie Hebdo: There are limits to free expression

  • -1

    cleo

    fxgai

    What the graph on the page you linked to shows is that more than half of all elderly households (with 2 or more people, singles don't seem to be included) have savings of less than 15 million yen, and two-thirds have less than the average 23 million. Just a quarter have savings in excess of 30 million yen.

    The page also shows a shortfall between average income and expenditure of nearly 50 thousand a month. If the average oldie makes up that difference from his average savings, the pot runs out in approximately 25 years. Looks like the oldies had better not look forward to a long old age.

    Posted in: Gov't to use sales tax hike revenue to expand welfare spending

  • 1

    cleo

    I will not put the kids in "private" high school, to avoid Juku stupidity. I've read that private high schools in Japan focus too much on passing Toudai entrance test, their students have very little general education

    It depends an awful lot on the school. Some of my friends sent their kids to private schools that, when they told me about them, sounded horrendous. My own son opted to go to a private school after watching his older sister go the public route, and he had a great time. He didn't go to juku. The school certainly did focus on academic work, but not to the detriment of everything else; the students were encouraged to engage in volunteer work and to develop non-academic interests outside of school, and he left school a well-rounded individual.

    If you're going to uproot the whole family to resettle overseas so that junior can start secondary education there, I can see the point in that; but I don't see that it's necessary, and I certainly would not send a 12-year-old off on his tod.

    I have a friend who used to teach in an International school. For the cost, I don't think I would recommend it.

    Posted in: Entrance exams: How parents ruin their kids' chances with misguided 'support'

  • -1

    cleo

    To be fair, most of the cats appear to be in good shape, and they're obviously very friendly around people, which they wouldn't be if they were abused at all. There was a shot of a kitty with a bandage on its leg, which presumably indicates that someone in the temple had taken the trouble to treat a wound.

    A few of the moggies begging from visitors appeared to be a bit moth-eaten, perhaps indicating they needed a little more attention. And another thing that bothered me was that none of the males appear to be neutered, promising a population explosion come spring, preceded by lots of cat fights and more cats needing wounds to be bandaged.

    And I wondered what the visitors were so gleefully feeding to the cats. Not all human food is good for cats.

    I'm glad I don't have to go to a temple to get my cat fix.

    Posted in: Buddhist monks cultivate cat haven at Fukui Prefecture’s 'Kitty Temple'

  • -2

    cleo

    That does not look like a happy cat. Maybe the owner should put the smartphone away and spend a bit more time interacting with the cat, then the cat would have no need for a collar tracking its movements.

    Posted in: Social networking for animals

  • 0

    cleo

    why did the supermarkets all mysteriously go from uchizei (tax included) to sotozei (tax excluded) prices overnight after the tax rise?

    It's easier to calculate without either losing money or ripping the customer off. An item that cost ¥100 before April, with 5% tax, would cost ¥102.857 after April with 8% tax. For uchizei the shop would have to either round up to ¥103 yen and rip off the customer on every purchase, or round down to ¥102 and lose money on every purchase. By displaying the before-tax price on the ticket and adding the 8% at the till, they keep the discrepancy to a minimum as the pluses and minuses tend to even each other out. It also reminds the customer every time how much is being taken in tax, and probably helps raise opposition to any further hikes. It wasn't all the supermarkets; in the town where I live some do, some don't.

    Posted in: Bare minimum

  • 1

    cleo

    I guess you would not want a pension as you would have saved your money by not sending your kids to college

    And further down the line the kids who missed out on a college education because their fiscally-responsible parents wanted the money for their own retirement will need the public pension because the low-paying unskilled work that was all they were qualified for won't be enough to live on, never mind save for retirement out of.

    Posted in: Gov't to use sales tax hike revenue to expand welfare spending

  • 0

    cleo

    people who chose to use their money to send kids to college

    That's an interesting perspective, one that had never occurred to me. You see, I always thought that having kids meant you did your very best for them no matter what, not that you let them have some of the scraps left after you'd made sure of your own needs. And if there were no scraps left, tuff luck kids, no education for you. Different ideas of what it means to be a parent, I guess.

    ...and then rely on a government pension paid out of my taxes....

    A part-timer, telling me how much her taxes will support my pension...? That's really quite funny. If your husband is a sarariman, you realise that you are the one whose free pension will have been paid for out of public taxes, including mine and my kids'?

    Posted in: Gov't to use sales tax hike revenue to expand welfare spending

  • -1

    cleo

    Good long shots of the twerp's fingers in the video. Angie Montenegro could get clear fingerprints off that.

    Posted in: Police investigate online prank video taken in supermarket

  • 0

    cleo

    Well, they paid for it.

    Sad to say, but they didn't.

    Of course they did. Apart from the free-loader sengyoshufu who get a pension without paying in a red yen.

    The baby boomers we are paying for made a fortune during the boom of the 80s, while we struggle to buy our own house.

    Some folk maybe made their fortunes during the boom, but remember for ordinary folk prices were commensurably high. It will take us 30 years to pay off our pretty steep mortgage (which I don't regret at all - we wanted our kids to grow up in a decent house with a garden and a dog), while my daughter's house - bigger, nicer, newer, more modern than ours - cost them less than half what ours did. They complain about the monthly mortgage payments, but it's peanuts compared to what we paid.

    If they spent and didn't save, well more fool them

    Yeah, more fool us for giving our kids a good life and putting them through college.

    Posted in: Gov't to use sales tax hike revenue to expand welfare spending

  • -2

    cleo

    LaWren: at the personal level, yes of course it's personal choice; and the majority of people make the choice not to have children they feel they can't afford. But the topic is government policy, and the government wants people to have more babies. The government (LDP) is also strongly supported by the older generation, who are not going to vote for lower pensions or more expensive healthcare.

    Posted in: Gov't to use sales tax hike revenue to expand welfare spending

  • 0

    cleo

    The average over-65 has 20,000,000 yen of savings to their name (and owns their own home 90% of the time).

    I'd like to know where your figures come from.

    Averages don't really mean anything; if my feet are in a bucket of ice and my hair is on fire, on average I'm at a comfortable temperature.

    making those who can afford it pay a fairer share

    You do know that those with higher incomes do pay a higher premium?

    The old rich pensioners should be means tested before receiving the pension

    Means testing isn't necessarily fair. If two people have the same job, same income, one person lives frugally and saves for retirement while the other spends all the money on the good life, by the time they retire, by your logic, the careful saver should do the best he can with what he saved, while the now-penniless spendthrift deserves a pension from the public purse.

    If people haven't saved for their old age, that is their look out

    So people decide not to have kids, because kids are expensive and they need to save for their old age. That means still fewer future taxpayers, in a downward spiral. People will be much more willing to have kids (which the government says it wants to encourage) if they can be confident of a living pension after they've spent everything on putting their kids through college.

    Nessie - Yes indeed.

    Posted in: Gov't to use sales tax hike revenue to expand welfare spending

  • 7

    cleo

    There are some sinkholes in the private sector. Beware single-doctor practices operated by a doc and his wife, especially if they drive a big flash car and wear haut couture to work.

    The larger, public hospitals however, tend to be excellent, though waiting times can be a bind.

    Posted in: What do you think of the quality of medical care at hospitals in Japan?

  • 10

    cleo

    Never thought I'd find myself defending Abe, but....

    Wait a minute! Let me get something straight here. They want to use Harding working taxpayers money to financially support lazy a** people who spend the money on cigarettes, alcohol and pachinko and not put the money into the pension system? What did i miss?

    The very first paragraph mentions to help citizens in its rapidly ageing society. That means pensioners, and babies. Maybe you wouldn't have missed it if you'd taken that minute to read the article. There is no mention of giving money to people to spend on cigarettes, alcohol and pachinko.

    The money will supposedly go on family allowances, healthcare and nursing care and to top up the pool of funds for the pension system.

    Unfortunately nothing is earmarked for reading lessons for JT posters.

    Posted in: Gov't to use sales tax hike revenue to expand welfare spending

  • 2

    cleo

    I'm sure I haven't seen all the cartoons published by Charlie Hebdo, but from the ones I have seen, the low circulation figures do not surprise me; as satire and humour, it's pretty low-level, low class. So in the sense of Do I feel a connection with Charlie Hebdo's sense of humour, then Non, je ne suis pas Charlie.

    But, to paraphrase Voltaire, while I do not approve of what CH had/has to say, I absolutely agree with their right to say what they want to say, in the way they want to say it. If there is no free speech or freedom of expression for CH, there is no free speech or freedom of expression for me. In that sense, then very emphatically, Oui, je suis Charlie.

    I listened yesterday on the BBC to an interview with somebody from the magazine, ridiculing the people joining in the Je suis Charlie march - these people, he said, were hypocrites, because they did not buy the magazine and thus did not really support Charlie Hebdo. I got the feeling that this person really did not get what Je suis Charlie means. I was also disappointed that the BBC interviewer did not take the opportunity to point out that you can defend someone's right to say something without necessarily agreeing with what they say.

    Posted in: Following the murderous attack on French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, “Je suis Charlie” — I am Charlie -- has gone viral around the world as a show of support for free speech. However, there is also a growing number of “Je ne suis pas Charlie” — I am not Charlie — messages online, triggering a debate about free speech and its limits. Where do you stand?

  • 1

    cleo

    many salarymen would buy an envelope similar to the companies

    In one company I worked for, the company itself obliged by providing two pay slips, one to show the wife and the real one for tax purposes. I asked why and was told that it would be dishonest and dangerous to lie to the taxman.

    Posted in: Stinky train tracks, expensive imports and no weekends: Netizens remember Showa-era Japan

  • -1

    cleo

    I can't remember how much our daughter's rental kimono plus photos cost, but it certainly wasn't in 6 figures. The pack also included free rental of hakama to wear at graduation the following year, which I thought was a pretty good deal.

    And no way I would pay for a dead fur anything to go round her neck, nor would she want one.

    Posted in: Young adults prepare for Coming-of-Age Day on Monday

  • 1

    cleo

    We forget who opened this whole can of worms. Those who got on the bandwagon to bomb a country that had NOTHING to do with the 9-11 bombings of the World Trade Center. Weren't the hijackers all Saudi, why punish Iraq...there's your source...

    I seem to recall that France was dead set against the US 'coalition' invasion of Iraq in response to 9/11.

    Posted in: Je suis Charlie? Attack sparks debate on free speech limits

  • 5

    cleo

    In my first job in the 70s I got paid through the bank - yes as a lowly forn Engrish teacher, I had a bank account as a matter of course, the first thing my employers did when I turned up for work was get me a hanko made, then down to the bank to open an account. But no bonus. After marriage, in a 'proper' job in the 80s I got paid in cash, with a twice-yearly bonus.

    The first three days of the New Year, everywhere was shut, you really did have to stock up on food to last the duration, and Tokyo was a (rather pleasant) ghost town for those three days.

    International telephone calls were so expensive you counted the seconds off on a stop watch as you spoke. Communication was by one-sheet, fold-over aerogrammes that could take up to two weeks to arrive and didn't always arrive in the order they were sent, which was sometimes confusing for parents back home. (Things aren't perhaps all that different now - a Christmas card & letter I posted to Florida about a week before Christmas eventually arrived on the 9th January).

    Posted in: Stinky train tracks, expensive imports and no weekends: Netizens remember Showa-era Japan

  • 0

    cleo

    GW - I'd heard that before so I did check, the 25-year stuff at Narita was a couple of thousand yen cheaper than our local liquor discount shop, and some three thousand yen cheaper than the local super. It's a couple of years ago now, so prices may be different.

    Posted in: What "omiyage" (souvenirs or gifts) do you bring back home with you after a trip to Japan? Or if you live in Japan, and your relatives or friends visit you, what "omiyage" do you recommend they take back home?

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