senseiman's past comments

  • 4

    senseiman

    @tokyoclambake

    Yes, it is absolutely bizarre. I commute by bicycle about 40 minutes each way so I am very attuned to the availability of shade on my route. About 90% of it is on tree-lined streets, but these have almost no shade whatsoever thanks to the overzealous trimming. I understand some trimming is useful to keep branches out of traffic, to encourage the tree to grow in certain way, etc but the way they do it is just mindless overkill.

    Posted in: Heatwave kills 15; more than 8,000 hospitalised

  • 18

    senseiman

    Perhaps the problem would be helped (albeit to a minor degree) by city governments not having workers go out and hack every single limb off of every single tree in the city right as the summer heat is about to hit. At least that is what they do in my city, leaving it a completely shadeless heat island throughout July and August, which is frustrating since there is no obvious reason why it has to be.

    Posted in: Heatwave kills 15; more than 8,000 hospitalised

  • 2

    senseiman

    Just reinforces my impression that these awful Transformers movies are seen as nothing more than commercials.

    Posted in: Chinese firm files 'Transformers' lawsuit

  • 1

    senseiman

    And do not forget Japan also has the death penalty.

    Which Japan applies pretty much exclusively to violent murdered and not drug offenders.

    I find the liberal use of the death penalty by China (and a lot of other east Asian countries) for non-violent drug offences to be really indefensible. Pretty much all these people are unimportant mules who definitely don`t deserve to die for their crimes.

    Posted in: China executes Japanese man for drug offenses

  • 3

    senseiman

    Rivlin said it sent a “very clear message to our enemies: you have not overcome us and you will not do so”.

    Brave words from a man whose army has just bombed a school full of children.

    Posted in: 15 dead as Israeli shell hits U.N. school sheltering Gazans

  • 0

    senseiman

    There are some good points about zoning made here, though as has also been pointed out this case has nothing to do with zoning law.

    If the issue is approached as a problem with the law, the law on cultural property protection is more relevant than zoning. Japan actually has a pretty good legislative framework for the protection of culturally important sites, but the problem is that the government has to take the initiative to actually designate a site as protected in order for that law to apply, which did not happen in this case.

    Im very curious as to why that did not happen here as a 400 year old garden of this size (its not massive but looking at pictures on other sites it is a pretty big garden by urban Japanese standards) are exceedingly rare in Japan. A weakness in the law seems to be the lack of a process by which the public is given the chance to participate in the designation of sites (ie it doesnt seem like anybody even could have nominated this site for protection if they had wanted to).

    Posted in: 400-year-old garden in Okayama to be replaced with condominium complex

  • -1

    senseiman

    @senseiman:How does a pachinko parlor´s business model invites this kind of behavior? Yeah, I get that pachinko parlor´s are not exactly pillars of the community, but your comment is kind of a stretch.

    Well, they provide a service that, by its nature, encourages people to become engrossed in it and completely lose track of time. Nothing wrong in and of itself with that, but when you also provide parking in the sweltering heat for those customers, and know that a lot of them are likely to be mothers....and further know that year after year these children`s deaths pile up on your own doorstep....how can they possibly justify not taking action? How can we justify not pursuing policies that will force them to do something?

    I mean, the events pretty much speak for themselves. You dont hear about mothers leaving their kids to die in cars while they spend 8 hours at a beauty salon or grocery store. It is always pachinko parlors and not other types of businesses. This is something very specific to that type of business and the fact that these deaths continue to happen again and again is ample evidence that the pachinko industry as a whole (not the most savory industry to begin with) simply doesnt give a crap that children are literally dying entirely preventable deaths on their property.

    Just to stress my point - none of this means I think that the responsbility of the parents for these deaths should in any way be diluted. But to allow the industry to basically just ignore the problem is outrageous.

    Posted in: Woman arrested after 5-month-old son dies in car while she plays pachinko

  • -3

    senseiman

    No, we certainly do not need to make the pachinko shops equally responsible. There is no reason whatsoever to divide the blame for this and the idea that a business should be responsible for manslaughter-going-on-murder is just ridiculous. It's sufficient that they post signs warning people about this, but at some point adults have to take responsibility for their actions.

    I agree that they shouldn`t be held "equally" responsible - in the sense that the ultimate responsibility of the negligent parent should in no way be diminished - but I see no problem with holding pachinko parlors liable to some degree when their own business model just invites this sort of irresponsible behavior.

    The notion that it is sufficient to post warning signs is, frankly, laughable. This country is already awash with useless warning signs that nobody pays attention to, it is the ultimate lawyerly way of trying to wash one's hands of responsibility for anything. I'm pretty sure most pachinko parlors already have tons of warning signs and they have obviously not been effective at stopping these incidents, nor has reliance on appeals to parental responsibility alone.

    Pachinko parlors are the only party in a realistic position to put a stop to these deaths by simply adopting any one of a number of low cost solutions mentioned above (use of multi story parkades instead of shadeless parking lots, hiring of personel to patrol parking lots, etc).

    Posted in: Woman arrested after 5-month-old son dies in car while she plays pachinko

  • -1

    senseiman

    I can`t help but notice how every summer I read stories exactly like this in the news almost weekly and they always, without exception, involve pachinko parlors.

    While I totally agree that the parents in such cases bear ultimate responsibility and should be punished accordingly, I also think the law should impose some liability on pachinko parlors for these incidents as well. Their whole business model is based on sucking people of moderate intelligence into an activity that is both addictive and one in which you can easily lose track of time. By providing huge sweltering parking lots in which these people can leave infants to die they really are facilitating if not encouraging these incidents.

    This is I think a compelling argument mainly because the incidents could be so easily avoided if, instead of building sprawling parking lots with no shade, they would instead use multi-story parkades for customer parking. If they did that, while parents would still probably neglect their children at least they wouldn`t die of heat under the blistering sun. Most pachinko parlors in urban centres already do this, so it is entirely feasible, but not facing any legal liability for the deaths on their property the ones in the suburbs have no incentive to do so.

    Posted in: Woman arrested after 5-month-old son dies in car while she plays pachinko

  • 6

    senseiman

    This really is disgusting to read.

    I think I know the garden they are talking about, it even mentioned a blurb in Lonely Planet if I`m not mistaken.

    The lack of cultural preservation in this country - at least in terms of physical architecture - is appalling. I live in a nieghborhood that is branded as "historic" but the only way you`d know it by looking at it is because they have little signs sprinkled around telling you where things of historical significance used to be.

    "Site of the (so and so) tea house, built in 1648" says a sign on the edge of a convenience store parking lot.

    Posted in: 400-year-old garden in Okayama to be replaced with condominium complex

  • 0

    senseiman

    Israel HAS shown restraint.

    The argument you are making seems to be Just imagine how much more they could have killed - an argument you could use for anything Israel does short of nuking the entire Middle East.

    It is a psycopathic way of phrasing a justification for these actions that would in no way be acceptable in any other situation.

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • 1

    senseiman

    So you have different expectations of international conduct for countries of different political systems and levels of economic development. Ridiculous. That's precisely what's at the crux of the criticism being leveled at Israel for the restraint it has shown, yes restraint, against Hamas and it's absurd.

    In practice, when a democracy kills innocent civilians it comes as more of a shock since you dont expect them to behave that way, whereas when a brutal regime like Syrias does it it is more or less just confirms what we thought of them in the first place (otherwise we wouldn`t call them brutal regimes). This in no way should be taken as me saying that I think they should be held to different standards of conduct - crimes are crimes regardless of who commits them. The question I was addressing was why people pay more attention to victims of the Israeli military than they do to victims of the Syrian military, which is simply a question of perception. I was not suggesting that one was justified simply because it was perpetrated by a poor country while the other was not.

    And any mentality that suggests that Israel has shown restrain in killing hundreds of women and children is, frankly, sick.

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • 4

    senseiman

    Why are so many people here outraged about the number of Palestinians killed in Gaza but are silent when it comes to the thousands of Palestinians killed in Syria? Either you support the Palestinians or you don't.

    Probably because: a) the article is about the Gaza conflict, not Syria. b) Nobody is trying to justify Syrian atrocities on here, while numerous posts have attempted to do so with regard to Israel, which is probably rubbing people the wrong way. c) Israel is a European-style democratic state while Syria is a murderous third world dictatorship. We expect better from countries falling into the former category. If Belgium or Denmark killed hundreds of civilians in a military operation against one of their neighbors I'm sure we'd be just as mad.

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • -2

    senseiman

    Oh OK, so Israel needs to wait until a rocket kills someone. Gotcha! And what a load of bs. Let any terrorist group try that with any nation and you will see a quick military response. And yes, Hamas is a terrorist front organization and is even so listed by the great bastion of secualrism the UN.

    So, by your logic, if North Korea launches 1000 rockets into Japan and they kill nobody then no harm no foul, and Japan and allies cannot retaliate. I think you need to rethink your knee jerk. It seems your knee jerk is that Israel is somehow the villain when in fact Hamas brought this on, and yes, they use human shields.

    I never wrote anything that would lead to any of those conclusions. If you want to actually discuss this stuff you would do better to actually observe some decorum when responding to people rather than launching immediately into an angered tirade against some imaginary straw man.

    The question I was responding to was why there weren`t any protests against Hamas. Thats it.

    But just to set my actual position straight, of course a sovereign state like Israel has the right to retaliate against rocket attacks against it, regardless of whether or not they actually kill anyone. That right, however, does not mean it has cart blanche to do whatever it wants in retaliation without limits. The response so far has, in my opinion, been totally out of proportion to the Hamas attacks and, more seriously, displayed a flagrant disregard for the lives of innocent civilians. The fact that Hamas also displays a flagrant disregard for the lives of innocent civilians is not, in and of itself, a valid excuse for a democratic country like Israel to do the same.

    But by all means, if you must then go on insisting that all of this irrefutably means that I believe that Japan should just sit idly by while North Korea rains missiles down on it.

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • 1

    senseiman

    So what you're saying is that this protest would be for Israel if the Israelis didn't establish the Iron Dome and instead intentionally allowed, nay, engineered their civilian population to be killed by the 1000+ rockets fired by Hamas. Really? That's all it takes to be worthy of your sympathy and support?

    I have no idea what you are talking about.

    My sympathy goes to the innocent victims of the conflict. I don`t support either side, I think Hamas is a terrorist organization that should be condemned as well. I also think that Israel, as a soveriegn state, should be open to criticism for its own actions, which in this case has led to horrendous tragedy for hundreds of people and their families. Why that would be hard to comprehend, or why my view should be considered in any way objectionable, is beyond me.

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • 5

    senseiman

    Im going to get out the worlds tiniest violin and play an ode to Murchoch`s woes.

    How dare countries actually try to prevent tax evasion by billioinaires? The nerve.

    Posted in: Murdoch tells G20 gov'ts to take a back seat for growth

  • 6

    senseiman

    What would be the appropriate response to the launching of 1,000+ rockets into your country?

    Good question. Admittedly I don`t have a specific answer, but I can say without hesitation that I would definitely not choose a response that killed more than 500 people - the majority of them innocent civilians, many of them children.

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • 3

    senseiman

    Was there also a protest against the thousands of rockets fired from Gaza at Israeli civilian populations?

    The volleys of rocketfire from Gaza that instigated this invasion, while definitely an outrage, did not actually kill anyone. The Israeli invasion, on the other hand, has killed over 500, including large numbers of innocent civilians.

    You can`t seriously make the charge that there is a double standard (at least not based on that comparison) - the two are orders of magnitude apart.

    Posted in: Silent protest held in Tokyo against Gaza bloodshed

  • -5

    senseiman

    The costs of Abe`s idiotic nationalist pet projects coming home. This was of course entirely predictable and reinforce the obvious fact that these China/Korea bating policies do nobody any good.

    Posted in: Japanese firms hurt by tensions with China, S Korea

  • 5

    senseiman

    Nie to see some good news for a change. Well, I guess it isn`t necessarily good news considering what she went through, but it is news that at least comes as a relief.

    Posted in: Missing Okayama girl found unharmed; 49-year-old man arrested

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