senseiman's past comments

  • 1

    senseiman

    About the lying, the specific incident in question with Matsushima was particularly embarassing to watch. In the Diet DPJ member Renho asked her "What is this?" while holding up what was obviously a fan. She then refused to admit that it was a fan and during the back and forth only went so far as to admit that it was "Something which might be interpreted by some as being a fan" but not actually a fan. The whole exchange and use of verbal diarhea to avoid answering such a simple and obvious question (literally almost as simple as the "is this a pen?" of English lesson yore) was so ridiculous it made her look like an absolute idiot.

    Posted in: Obuchi resigns over misuse of political funds; justice minister also resigns

  • 8

    senseiman

    Interesting that Justice minister Matsushima has also resigned.

    Also of interest is that political logic has dictated that there is no problem at all with having a justice minister known to assort with neo-Nazis, but there is a huge problem with having that same justice minister distribute paper fans of no value at a rally.

    I`m glad to see her go, but would have felt more comfortable with her getting ditched over the former rather than the latter.

    Posted in: Obuchi resigns over misuse of political funds; justice minister also resigns

  • 8

    senseiman

    Two months as minister, well that was fast.

    Seems like political reality is finally catching up with Abe - his economic reforms have not actually translated into tangible benefits for people, his nationalist views have alienated China and Korea for literally no purpose other than, apparently, to alienate China and Korea and now his new cabinet appointees are almost nothing but a revolving door of political scandal.

    I can`t wait to be rid of him. Well, until I see who replaces him......

    Posted in: Obuchi resigns over misuse of political funds; justice minister also resigns

  • 1

    senseiman

    4 leagues for me senseiman. 2 central leagues and 2 pacific leagues with at least 4 teams in each. Then you open up Japan baseball to new franchises.

    I like that idea. Then you would just have the leader of each division play a League championship series (like MLB did until the early 90s).

    Sadly, one thing that will need to happen for expansion to have a chance is for baseball teams to be actually run as baseball teams and not as mere advertising tools for newspaper, railway, department store and online retail companies. There is a huge market for baseball in Japan but NPB teams are so poorly run it is going to be a hard sell to get 4 more teams in the league. Its really no wonder that even aJapan focused website like JT only has actual articles about MLB baseball, while with NPB, even in key playoff games, you just get the bare score of the game.

    Posted in: Japanese baseball results

  • -1

    senseiman

    Yeah, I find that 1 game advantage to be kind of a ridiculous rule as well. It also seems unecessary. The idea was they wanted to give the team with the best record during the regular season an advantage. But they already have that, being the only team that doesn`t have to go through the Climax Series to reach the league series championship. It just feels really arbitrary and weird to give them a fictional win.

    I`m guessing the Giants are the reason it exists - they are the team that has finished first place more than any other and probably insisted on this as a way of reducing the risk of another team having a good series and knocking them out of the playoffs.

    Not that it helped them this time :)

    They probably should simplify the whole playoff format though, its way too long and complicated.

    Posted in: Japanese baseball results

  • 1

    senseiman

    That was a great series (from the perspective of a Tigers fan at least). It was actually pretty shocking to see how awful the Giants performed, even with the home field advantage and automatic 1 game lead.

    I am hoping the Hawks will win the PL and we`ll have a rematch of the 2003 Series.

    Posted in: Japanese baseball results

  • 2

    senseiman

    Poor guy.

    Actually what surprised me most was to learn that even star soccer players apparently don`t make much money in Japan. On TV last night they reported he was on his way to work at a hotel, at what sounded like a mundane low paying job, and the car he was driving was by no means a luxury one.

    Posted in: Former Japan soccer star Oku killed in car crash

  • -1

    senseiman

    Yes, the Giants lose again (somewhat ironic given that the SF Giants just won the pennant on the same day)!

    Posted in: Japanese baseball results

  • 10

    senseiman

    How does the magazine expect to effect any change at all to this alleged behavior if it doesn't even identify this Company X?

    That is indeed an infuriating part of Japanese reporting on stuff like this, the name of the person(s) committing the outrageous acts is ommitted and, if on TV, their face is mosaiced (unless they have been arrested, at which point they will identify them). One of the most useful aspects about consumer-watchdog-type investigative reporting in North America is that it exposes these crooks to public outrage, which often times leads officialdom to actually doing something about it.. That might hopefully still be the case here - the people in a position to do something about htis company X already know who it is - but it probably diminishes the deterrant effect of reporting on others who know that their identities will not be revealed even if a reporter does catch on to what they are doing.

    Posted in: Kansai taxis flout laws in quest for more lucrative business

  • 4

    senseiman

    So glad to see the Giants losing.

    Posted in: Japanese baseball results

  • 5

    senseiman

    Prime Minister Abe (trying to put positive spin on it): "While unfortunate, I think the bigger point to be taken from this incident is that finally we have found a recently appointed female member of my cabinet who had the foresight to have not been photographed with Nazis and instead chose the traditional misuse of funds route for her first scandal. That is something special."

    Posted in: Obuchi apologizes after political funds misuse reports

  • 1

    senseiman

    "God Japan, so we decided to arbitrarily persecute....er I mean prosecute some Japanese reporter on trumped up charges that are clearly politically motivated and clearly a violation of any minimum standards of freedom of the press, geez don't go making some federal case over it....actually you can't because we don't have a federal system but anyway its just a figure of speech. You know what we mean."

    Posted in: S Korea urges Japan to calm down over Japanese reporter

  • 1

    senseiman

    I doubt that. If it is a dangerous job to arrest them, then what are the police here for? So by your logic, if a guy is speeding away, the police should just get his license number and then show up to his home and ask him to turn himself in.

    I don`t mean it is dangerous to the police, I mean it is dangerous to the public. High speed chases through densely packed urban areas pose an immense risk to bystanders, especially in Japan where most side streets are shared by pedestrians and motorists. Also, the nature of the chase - a patrol car chasing a bike - can only have three endings - the bike crashing, the bike running out of gas or the bike getting away. The first is a serious danger to the public, the second is highly unlikely unless the chase goes on for hours and the third is also a bad result. In other words, the chase itself is usually an act of futility and it makes much more sense to adopt the approach the police have. In the example you cite, it actually is standard practice (not just in Japan but in North America and Europe as well) for police to abandon chases when they enter crowded areas owing to the risk to bystanders (and, like the police in Japan, in such instances they usually do show up on the suspects doorstep later to make an arrest).

    Posted in: Biker assaulted by iron bar-wielding Nara innkeeper

  • 5

    senseiman

    Right. That seems to be working just great as the article points out that the number of bosozoku is on the increase. What needs to be done is the cops just set up a trap for these guys, they take the same path every weekend, and then arrest them and confiscate the bikes. They can do this for drunk drivers, they can do this for this social problem as well.

    Actually the article doesn`t anywhere say that the number is on the increase, which is probably owing to the fact that Bosozoku numbers have been decreasing since the 1980s (http://jalopnik.com/the-bosozoku-are-japans-disappearing-rebels-without-a-c-1642416129 ).

    > Uhhh.... THAT IS THEIR JOB. Their job is not to sit around a koban, writing out forms in triplicate, and then do something after the fact. Part of patroling and policework is to stop criminals in the act.

    Did you not read the rest of my post? They are gathering evidence and making arrests, which is their job, and doing so in a common sense way that avoids dangerous and largely pointless high speed chases in densely crowded urban areas.

    While the police might be accused of a lot of things like sitting around in a koban all day filling out forms, this is one area where I much prefer their approach to the alternative, which would just precipitate violent confrontations and greater mayhem. And as I said, the fact that they do not apprehend these punks in the act does not mean that they are letting them off (read the link I posted above), these guys are getting arrested and are being punished, only at a time and place where it makes much more sense.

    Posted in: Biker assaulted by iron bar-wielding Nara innkeeper

  • 12

    senseiman

    Tell me I am not the only one who has fantasized about doing exactly that every time these punks screech around the neighborhood at 2AM?

    Nara inkeeper: You are my hero.

    Efforts? Don't make me laugh! The police do nothing but follow them in their cars, if that.

    In fairness, it only looks like the police are doing nothing. When they follow them in their cars, they are usually filming the bikers for identification purposes and collecting evidence of their crimes. Since it is both difficult and dangerous to actually try to catch them in the act, they dont try (which makes sense actually). Instead, they just show up on the bikers doorstep a couple of days later and make an arrest (and confiscate their damn bikes).

    Posted in: Biker assaulted by iron bar-wielding Nara innkeeper

  • 13

    senseiman

    They really need to find a more sensible way of funding NHK, the whole notion of forcing someone to enter a contract (something which by definition is supposed to be voluntary) makes no sense whatsoever.

    Posted in: Tokyo court rules that hotels must pay NHK fees according to the number of rooms with TVs

  • 4

    senseiman

    So in other words: "Just to set everybody's mind at ease about how safe this nuclear reactor is we will have a folksy old town hall type meeting to put to rest all these concerns you have with it. We just ask that you refrain from raising questions about anything that actually concerns you about the reactors. Also, do NOT, I repeat NOT record anything we say, we don't want anyone not attending the meeting to know what we are talking about and we certainly don't want anything that could be used as evidence in court. Oh and also anybody living in a town whose main employer is not the nuclear reactor is not allowed in, even if their homes will be rendered uninhabitable if we screw things up like we did in Fukushima. But rest assured, we probably won't do that again."

    Posted in: Japan pitches nuclear restart in tightly controlled town hall meetings

  • 11

    senseiman

    I live very close to the Chinese consulate in my city. The consulate itself is perfectly quiet, but every weekend and holiday I get blasted by wartime patriotic songs played at full volume by morons in black vans who probably hate me too.

    And these people are complaining about the sound of children playing?

    They must be the grumpiest people in the world.

    Posted in: New daycare centers held up by residents opposing noisy kids

  • 0

    senseiman

    ribstick - fair enough. I dont actually like the Sky Tree, I just mentioned it since you had brought up Tokyo Tower, which seemed odd given that the Sky Tree is, for all its faults, quickly replacing the old Tower as Tokyos famous landmark.

    I dont disagree that there are benefits to iconic architecture, I suppose my problem is specifically with stadiums as the medium for creating that. Like I said, I cant think of a single Olympic Stadium that represented the cutting edge of bold design when they were built that has come to be associated with its city in a positive way that would really put it on the map. I mentioned the bird`s nest in Beijing, but there is also the Olympic Stadium in Montreal (very bold design, but an albatross that everyone in the city hates) and others. The clear pattern seems to be that modest or re-purposed stadiums have more long term success and benefits while these big bold designs just impose tremendous costs on the hosts that they never recoup.

    I mean, for a stadium that size you really need a regular occupant to have it make financial sense, just hosting concerts and other irregular events isnt going to create anywhere near enough revenue. But all the major sports teams in Tokyo already have venues and I havent heard any plans for any of them to use it.

    So just saying it is iconic doesn`t come anywhere near to establishing that there is a "need" for this thing. Japan is full of rotting buildings that were built specifically to be iconic but which nobody had any long term plans for and ultimately just saddled future generations with the costs of maintaining or demolishing them. Everything I have seen about this Olympic stadium suggests it will fit that exact pattern.

    Posted in: Construction of Olympic stadium delayed again over dubious bidding

  • 2

    senseiman

    Tokyo NEEDS this stadium,

    Because....people go to cities specifically to see stadiums? Seriously?

    A couple of problems come to mind. First, hardly anybody is going to travel halfway around the world to see a stadium shaped like a bicycle helmet that will be empty most of the time. Big, even unique, stadiums like this are a dime a dozen - nobody goes to Beijing just to see that bird's nest stadium that was all the rage in 2008 (and currently sits empty most of the time). Part of the problem is that with a plethora of international sporting events being held every 2-4 years there is always another bigger, newer stadium being built somewhere else and this one in Tokyo will probably be passe before the games even begin. Second, its a bit of a laugh to compare this to the Eiffel Tower, etc, but even if we accept that comparison, very few people visit Paris specifically to see the Eiffel Tower (or the opera house in Sidney, etc). They are just kind of things that people who are already there to enjoy the city itself. Tokyo doesn't need a giant eyesore to distinguish itself, it has a lot of other things going for it that will attract people.

    Posted in: Construction of Olympic stadium delayed again over dubious bidding

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