Japan’s Delightful 80-Hour Work Week

If you ever visit Tokyo, you cannot walk down the street or board a train without bumping into a Salaryman. “Salaryman” is the Japanese-English term for male white-collar workers. The typical salaryman spends roughly 13 hours per day inside a cubicle, averaging about 80 hours per week. This does not include the mandatory after hours […]

Japan’s Peace Constitution, Article 9, And Why Abe Wants To Dismantle It: A short primer

RENUNCIATION OF WAR

Article 9. Aspiring sincerely to an international peace based on justice and order, the Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes.
In order to accomplish the aim of the preceding paragraph, land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained. The right of belligerency of the state will not be recognized.

Japan’s State Secrets Laws Empowers The Elite and Muzzles The Press: FOP RIP 12/10/2014

The Japanese government is looking for a mascot for its oppressive State Secrets Act. This monsters with eyes to monitor the media and hands to arrest them may be ideal--no ears to listen to reason and no mouth to speak secrets--it can only attack.

It allows Japan’s 19 government ministries to designate certain information as state secrets. The state secret classification lasts five years, a period that can be extended to 60 years. Any civil servant that shares the classified secrets and any journalist that works with the leaked information could face up to 10 years of imprisonment. In simple terms, a government employee that leaks a classified secret can receive up to ten years in jail. A reporter or citizen that urges the official to release information or works with the person to do so can be sent to jail for up to five years. In other words, a reporter who aggressively asks about matters deemed secret can go to jail for questions alone.

“The Only Woman in the Room”/ How The Amazing Beate Wrote Equal Rights For Women Into Japan’s Constitution

beate

Is Japan’s peacetime constitution going to be trashed by the ruling party and returned back to the Imperial Constitution, which did not give suffrage or equal rights to women?
This question will be on the mind and haunt your waking hours after reading “The Only Woman in the Room” by Beate Sirota Gordon. In this memoir, she takes us through the various events in her life made remarkable by the fact that in late 1945, she became a member on the US Occupation team that drew up Japan’s National Constitution. Not only was she the only woman in the room, she was just 22 years old.

Brand Japan, Brand Abe: A Clash of Narratives

800px-Ambassador_Roos_With_Japanese_Prime_Minister_Abe_at_the_Joint_Press_Announcement_of_the_Okinawa_Consolidation_Plan

Written by Nancy Snow Two decades ago I was working at the United States Information Agency (USIA), an independent foreign affairs agency of the U.S. Government. We were separate from the Department of State—the counterpart to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan, and our primary task was Public Diplomacy. Some called what we did […]

日本の報道の自由を守ろう!報道推進賞に記者等をノミネート。23日が締め切り!

世界の報道の自由の日に合わせて日本の報道の自由に貢献した方々・報道機関を褒めよう!推薦してください。

日本外国特派員協会は第1回報道の自由推進賞を新設に向けて小さな一歩を踏み出した。賞は5月3日(世界報道の自由の日)に発表される。調査報道に与えられる特別賞や、報道の自由に貢献したジャーナリスト以外の人に与えられる賞がある。

Cherry Blossom Sale In Tokyo! Last chance to 花見!

Cherry blossom tree next to a pond at Koishikawa Korakuen

As eerie as the location sounds, Aoyama Cemetery is far from spooky with hundreds of trees that bloom each spring. The cemetery also contains the graves of several notables including Toshimichi Okubo, one of the founders of modern Japan; Henry Spencer Palmer, the Times’ first correspondent for Japan; and the owner of Hachiko. Yes, Hachiko, the famous dog whose statue serves as a popular meeting place in front of Shibuya station. For history buffs or for someone who wants something different from the same old picnic in a normal park, Aoyama Cemetery is the place to be.

Make It A Swinging Sunday Night: Pole Dance Tokyo Student Showcase

Getting down from the pole is easy. Getting to the top--hard work.

Pole Dance. It started as something sexy, turned into an art-form, a fitness boom, and it’s still as sexy as hell. From the people who made Pole Dance an International Event. I saw a sneak preview in January—was impressed. Worth the price of admission and maybe worth the price of lessons if you have the time and stamina.

US citizen dies after being taken in to protective custody in February/赤坂警察署の説明が正しい模様

Akasaka Police holding down the 29 year old English teacher who had been reportedly acting wildly in Akasaka. He had a heart attack on the scene and was taken to a hospital after ambulances arrived.

On February 2nd, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Agency announced the death of an American national who allegedly went on a rampage in the street of Akasaka,  was taken into protective custody and then was carried to a hospital, where he died. According reports in the Japanese press, the Akasaka Police Station, said the autopsy on the dead body did not reveal the cause of his death.

Should Fuji-Sankei Group be red-faced over scheduled blackface music program in Japan?

This photo of two Japanese musical groups posing together in blackface, white gloves and costumes, gained attention when tweeted by several journalists and many others. Some consider it racist.