More nuclear panic, less nuclear power


Remember a few weeks ago that the Japan Times published a letter from a person from Singapore and their miscarriage rumours? Fortunately, but a bit belatedly, the Japan Times has published evidence that it is all nonsense. Although others say the evidence is nonsense. :roll:

In the JT the day before, we got Bread and becquerels. I think :headdesk: provides enough of a review for now. This bit stands out:

my wife has decided to take our sons to Italy and spend the “radioactive pollen” season with my mother.

Cue a chorus of “More radiation from the flight and natural background in Italy”, no doubt countered by “Hot particles! Hot particles!”

Now, getting on to the business of restarting the Ooi reactors 3 and 4. I can well understand why people are so opposed as the government is completely and utterly wishy-washy on the whole affair, with no-one willing to stick their head above the parapet for long enough to make the economic and environmental cases for turning them back on, so all the anti- Kansai governers have free rein to state their opposition without needing to worry about detailing how they will actually keep the air conditioners running this summer. As the Asahi says:

Since Hashimoto presented the conditions, he needs to come up with substantial steps to tide over summer demand for electricity without relying on a nuclear power plant. He should not let the message end up being empty words.

Quite frankly, I wonder if as a last-ditch attempt to derail the One Osaka movement, the DPJ are prepared to let the lights go out in Kansai just to show Hashimoto up?

Leave a comment


  1. @Greg:

    As far as I understand, rushing to encase the reactors in concrete would not be a good idea for the long term control of the radioactive materials. But hey, let’s not let reality get in the way of internet campaigning.

    (That twitter account appears to link to conspiracy sites and “we’re all going to die” rent-a-gobs like Arnie Gundersen.)

  2. @The Chrysanthemum Sniffer:

    Yeah, it’s less of a Japan problem and more of a video game industry problem. It’s a very immature industry, quite akin to American comic books. It’s getting better over time, but yeah. Also, it’s worth mentioning, Japan doesn’t dominate the industry anymore. Nintendo of course is still quite successful, but over the last ten years there has been a shift, so most of the best-selling stuff is coming out of the West now (largely Canada).

    Interestingly, the flamboyantly homosexual characters aren’t the only thing to get buffed out of English releases of Japanese games. Games that actually addressed homosexuality in a reasonably mature fashion (years ahead of their time) often had those story aspects removed from the US release because Americans were very sensitive about such things. There’s even a case of an odd (but not homosexual) character in the Zelda series basically being put in the vault for good because Americans reacted so poorly to him, with the top reason given in surveys conducted by Nintendo being “I don’t like him because he’s too gay”.

    Anyway, as I said, the industry is getting better. Most of the examples in that Cracked article are pretty old, and while Japan still does some odd stereotypes (the otherwise excellent black character Sazh in FF13 keeps a baby bird in his afro), they’ve really cleaned up their act. Western games tend to have more problems in this area pound for pound these days, with a great deal of Western games indulging rather liberally in Michael Bay-esque stereotyping.

    All of this isn’t even getting into the way women are treated in the games industry, where again, things look a great deal like the American comic book industry with Western games, and things look a great deal like the illegal pornography industry with Japanese games.

    The whole industry could do with a bit more shaming on stuff.

  3. @Greg: I saw on the news last night that it was, if I understood correctly, a relay hunger strike, where they take turn about in not eating – I think they said the target was a few days each.

  4. @Ken Y-N (aka Tepido Naruhodo):

    Isn’t that just called a diet?

  5. @iago: That’s what I was thinking, a good cleansing. Fair enough, the ol girl should have other things to do than fighting that fight like spending time with grandchildren.

  6. @VK: This why I don’t understand why everyone gets so worked up over the these people with blogs or twitter accounts.
    It’s the net. It’s like someone opened the doors to all the mental institutions and let the lunatics loose. Then someone has to try to convince them to go back to their intuitions voluntarily. Its not the New York Times it’s a blog.
    As far as I know WSJ is still apart of the Murdoch empire so…but if go to the Real Time China on that list on the right of the page, you’ll see a tremendous amount of activity. The one interesting presence is the 50 cent army. Most of you know who they are and they make for an interesting presence.

  7. @iago:

    No, as far as relay “hunger strike” I just call them attention-seeking assholes. A “hunger strike” in which you don’t risk death is not a hunger strike. These people aren’t even risking the need to tighten their hemp belts a notch.

    In protest of this silliness I am going on a hunger strike..until about 12:00, then I’ll start it again at 12:30. Though I will allow myself comsumption of fluids during the strike periods. A venti matcha frappuccino at about 3PM counts as a fluid too, right?

    I won’t stop until these hungers strikers give up! Then I’ll get really serious and start a hunger strike against anti-Japan hate blogs. Who’s with me?!

    (No, seriously. The Tepido Say No to Anti-Asian Racism Hunger Strike! We need to work out the shift schedule..and a catchier name for it.) :wink:

  8. Tony In Saitama


    Parsing that with negative logic, did you just invite everybody to lunch? :grin:


    , THEY’LL FALL BEHIND SOUTH KOREA!! Why South Korea (as opposed to, say, Spain)?

    This is the document in question.

    Look at page 12.

    2010 GDP per capita
    1 Luxembourg
    2 Singapore 
    3 the U.S.
    4 Germany
    5 U.K.
    6 Japan
    7 South Korea
    8 China

    1 Luxembourg
    2 Singapore 
    3 the U.S.
    4 South Korea
    5 U.K.
    6 Japan
    7 Germany
    8 China

    The answer is obvious. Because “they” won’t fall behind Spain. As a side, who are “they”? Aren’t “they” the Japanese? Isn’t Debito one of us the Japanese?

    The rest of the post is also off the mark as always.

  10. @:



  11. @Level3:

    Whenever I hear about such a thing being discussed I feel a strong urge to bring up how it is supposed to be done

  12. @: For goodness sake, targetting foreigners outside Japan is now mentioning South Korea would overtake Japan! :headdesk:

  13. @Mr. Falcon: Interestingly, Extra Credits (a very good web video series on game design) chose a Japanese game (Persona 4) to single out for their portrayal of a gay character as an example of excellent writing and game design. Also interestingly, the developers noted that they had to bury the character’s homosexuality for the American release.

    To compare, if we really want to get into portrayals of other races, see their review of Call of Juarez: The Cartel.

  14. @:

    On his latest entry – the Yomiuri article he cites is based on the same data he previously used in his seminal presentation on flyjin – I guess the pretty graphs make it easy to understand the data for him.

    He comments that he “can’t help but point out” (I wish he could help himself) that,

    it’s clear the preponderance of the “flyjin” phenomenon is, once again, not due to NJ fleeing.

    Helpfully, the article lists the main figures – so he doesn’t even have to look. The population drop breaks down to a decrease of 180,000 due to deaths outnumbering births and a social change (people leaving versus entering) of 79,000. In debitoland, this is 79,000 people fleeing – made up of 51,000 foreign residents and just 28,000 Japanese (a tiny percentage of the Japanese population). Of course, there were no flyjin, it’s just the Japanese leaving.

    To make it easier for him, I’ve copied the monthly breakdown into a graph.
    There is a clear drop in total population following March last year, which has been recovering slowly. Strangely, no clear concomitant drop is seem in the population of Japanese citizens. So who left? Oh yes, here’s another graph.
    There seems to be a big rush of “NJ” leaving Japan between March and April last year, and then it begins to recover and is still rising (more slowly), though still 4% down on the same time last year based on latest figures (actually the figures now go up to November 2011, so 1 month more than used in the article).

    Still not sure how the data is worked out – it seems to be based on census data, adjusted by births, deaths, and entries and exits. This article says the foreign residents are counted as people in Japan for more than 90 days – so this could include some longer staying tourists. So my previous suggestion that it wouldn’t take into account foreigners that retained their residency status, was wrong. Strangely it would discount foreigners that leave on holiday from the figures – which explains the blips in foreign resident numbers taken on 1st January. Also not sure how it accounts for foreign births – maybe dual nationals get counted twice. I have a feeling that the new registration system/having everyone on a 住民票 will make collecting this sort of data easier.

  15. @Nogbad:


    Debito fans might be reading Japan Times but it is obvious Debito org is not catching up with the Japanese news.

    2012年4月18日0時22分 Asahi.


    ThoughtIWasALifer Says:
    April 22nd, 2012 at 12:23 am

    Typically Debito org—-The message for you—”I left Japan and I succeeded, why don’t you leave Japan?”

    I had plenty of job choices available including government work, and things turned out just fine.

    I wonder why Debito can’t find jobs in the U.S.

    it is also great to be back in a place that doesn’t ‘other’ people to the degree that Japan did, and is not quite so passive-aggresive.

    Which country is it ? Krypton?
    Name any country, I can show you aspect of racism in that country as bad as Japan.
    He can’t name the country because there is no such country.

    The message is always the same; Japan is negatively unique, this time, Japan is worse…..Typically Debito org

    Jim Di Griz Says:
    April 22nd, 2012 at 10:58 am

    @ Troy #6
    You talk about ‘best scenarios’, and ‘solutions’. You are in some kind of ‘la-la-land’.

    The fact that Jim is still in Japan makes me assume that Japan might be such a good place that even a hater like Jim can’t leave and the rest of the world is worse than the la-la-land.

    Jim, you are on the sinking boat, practice what your boss preaches or do you just want less gajin competitors?

  16. @Nogbad: I was watching Mr Sunday today, and the fragant Ms Christel Takigawa said herself that the causes of the population decrease were (a) aging society (b) 3/11 and (c) foreigners. She’ll be in the book of traitors next…

  17. @:

    I think you’re right about the debito fans having some self-interest in trying to discourage other Anglos from coming to Japan. Less competition for their unskilled eikaiwa jobs. Perhaps it’s subconscious for some of them, but I think for quite a few it is deliberate and cynical.

    They call for open immigration for people from developing nations to do the “humiliating” work of nursing and factories and such.. because it’s no threat to their eikaiwa jobs. But convince Anglos not to come, and demand respect for the flyjin for being “brave” to leave..yet stay in Japan continuing to work? Sounds pretty cynical to me.

    As for debito himself leaving.. I really think that he was already on the way out from the secretary college before 3/11. The bitter gripes about being asked to actually show up to work, his tries at getting sabbatical, complaining about cuts in salary.. sounds like he was pushed out or got himself pushed out.

    3/11 sure made a convenient excuse for leaving, and you get right back into the shameless cynicism of trying to convince people that Japan is a radioactive wasteland. – so that your cowardice/ignorance/lack of success/inability to keep a job/etc. can be transformed into a brave escape from a hellish nightmare to bring The Trooooth to The World!

    20,000+ people died, and millions are cleaning up the mess, but the flyjin conspiracy nuts are the “brave” ones?


  18. Talking of never letting data get in the way of a good story…

    Speaking of credibility, Troy followed up and accused me of “cherry picking” my own data by citing 10 years of IMF data. Spam. (His IP is also listed on

    Once I pull the FOS Card and decide a commenter is being more disingenuous than illuminating, I pull the plug on further comments. As I said, “Bye Troy”.


  19. @iago:

    Oh FFS. :headdesk: I may not know a lot about economics but I have seen that slide he pulled out of his back side before. The last time I looked, the data wasn’t available.

    Looking at it this time shows his source is not saying ANYTHING like what he is quoting it as saying. :roll:

    Debito, look VERY closely.

    The “source” you have used CLEARLY states that the data presented is “Inflation, average consumer” and NOT “% Change in GDP Per Capita”

    You aren’t going to get any sort of recognition in anything if you don’t stop spewing out you streams of biased consciousness and proof read the crap you are posting beforehand.

    Well, no recognition beyond that of a complete know-nothing moron.

  20. That chart set off my bs radar as well. A few minutes on google debunked it. Then this site

    Showed a ton of info. I posted it to debito and he allowed it. Fwiw.

    I try to keep to myself, throw an occasional comment if the mood strikes me, but for some reason this thread was the last straw. The negativity just became to much.

  21. @iago:

    I never understand Debito’s intolerant policy on dissenting opinions and I don’t understand how the participants of Debito org who are liberal, libertarian and/or advocates of multi-culture can turn a blind eye to the policy. Anyway I guess the attitude has made Debito what he is today, withdrawing from and cursing the people who disagreed with him.

    Troy Says


    Japan’s economy has not “worsened” over the last 20 years:

    ca. 1990 it simply stopped growing so explosively like it was in the postwar period (~10% pa. growth in the 1960s and ~5% pa. growth in the 1970s & 1980s).

    (For your reference,

    Home > Historical Data Graphs per Year >


    January 4, 2011 8:55 pm
    In the grip of a great convergence
    By Martin Wolf
    Conveniently there are graphs of GDP per head from 1820 on the article.)
    – I’m going to have to call FOS on the claim of “Japan’s economy has not “worsened” over the last 20 years.” From one of my lectures, click to expand in browser:

    I know little about economics but reading newspapers everyday, I am pessimistic on Japan’s economy as well as world economy.

    That said, does Debito’s chart in his lecture—I am not sure of its significance though— refute Troy’s claim with the link to substantiate it?

  22. GuruGuruDokkan

    Really wish I had not clicked the link to view the thread.


    Really, really juvenile and bereft of any redeeming qualities.

  23. What exactly does ‘FOS’ mean in Debito-speak, anyway? I’m reading it as “Freedom of Speech”, which makes his use of it wrt Troy amusingly ironic.

  24. @sublight:

    I’m guessing it is full of shit, but maybe by calling FOS, he was suggesting telephoning the Financial Ombudsman Service for some economic advice?
    To me Fos would mean Finkel-Biskis-Jinkins osteogenic sarcoma, but I don’t think it’s that.

  25. Ah, ‘full of shit’. It’s been so long since I last walked the rarefied halls of ivory-tower academia, I’d forgotten how intellectuals voiced disagreement with their peers.

  26. @:

    I can only assume that is fundamentally driven by it’s positioning as a site of “activism”, not one of debate. Posts are staking a position in support of the activist mission, and dissenting opinions weaken that position.

    The objective is not intellectual discussion and compromise, the objective is to rally the troops and “take that hill”. And I don’t think it has ever pretended otherwise…?

  27. To get back to the original post, Hashimoto san’s grand plan is to get KEPCO to bump up the peak electricity price to persuade people to stop using so much, and that’s about it.

    There has been various calculations on the telly, mentioning that if KEPCO (a) has its consumers save electricity as much as TEPCO managed last summer, and (b) imports every kilowatt of spare electricity from Shikoku, Chugoku and Kyushu, we can just get through the summer. :neutral: However (I can’t find a link again) last December one of KEPCO’s oil-fired stations went on the blink, and they had to buy a huge chunk from Kyushu – I don’t see anyone talking about that on the telly, and I thought 想定外 was now a forbidden word. :sad:

    And talking of Hashimoto, one of the evening sports rags tonight had as its front page headline: 橋下 公明 密約 :shock:

  28. @iago:

    I think you have got that right.

    For myself, not being a sheeple, before I follow anyone up any hills I want to hear not just the pros but also the cons, and be convinced it is a good cause. When I encounter a character like Debito who is not truly willing to look at any view but his own, I tend to want to run into the nearest valley. :wink:

  29. It’s just debito not understanding what words mean again. The economy has not worsened? Seems to be true. GDP did not actually go down or whatever, right? Just didn’t go up as high as before?

    This is typical of any dishonest big government lefty. If something doesn’t increase as much as before, or as much as you wanted, it’s a “cut”, it’s a “decrease”, it’s a “decline”.

    They want spending to go up 5%, and the opposition only wants 2% (even above inflation), then the opposition is “drastically cutting” the program. Try to explain that adding 2% is not a “cut” and you get called cruel, you want to starve grandma, are shouted down, censored, told to take your technical gibberish elsewhere.
    No surprises from debito.

    PS to 空

    Please, never, EVER confuse debito with being a Libertarian ever again. There is no way in hell he is a Libertarian. :smile:

  30. @Level3:

    Please, never, EVER confuse debito with being a Libertarian ever again. There is no way in hell he is a Libertarian.

    Ops, perhaps the way I wrote was wrong. Yep, he has no ideology to speak of. but there are other posters on debito org who emphasize the smaller government and more individual freedom.

  31. @Level3:

    OK – how about we never EVER call him a Libertarian if you stop droning on ad nasueam about Debito’s essential problem is that he’s a “leftie”? Deal?

    Sora’s right – he has no ideology. Arudou picks and chooses from whatever rhetoric is to hand to pursue his main passion, which is hating Japan.

  32. @VK:

    Arudou picks and chooses from whatever rhetoric is to hand to pursue his main passion, which is hating Japan promoting himself.

    I maintain that his aim is to be important, and “hating Japan” is only the menas to an end. It always has been.

  33. @VK:

    Maybe I could… if you stop pretending a Bush-hating, Obama-cheering, hate crime law loving, anti-discrimination law supporting, hate speech law supporting, open immigration supporting, labor union supporting, self-proclaimed liberal arts academic, anti-nuke fearmonger, cop-hating, litigious, Michael Moore fanatic, with an Ivy League degree, who takes the United Nations seriously, and sees many things in terms of race as long as it involves attacking the majority race that holds power is somehow not ticking a hell of a lot of the checkboxes on a list of “What Do Leftists Believe?” :grin:

    There are plenty of embarrassing jerks on the extreme right. I don’t pretend they’re not right wing, and I try my best to learn about the weaknesses such nuts expose in my own politics. It’s extremist nuts on either side that help us understand where we should set sensible boundaries, lest we become them. And yes, some of those extremists who go so far will loop back around to the opposite side on an issue or three. But, if for some reason you want to pretend he isn’t a wingnut that spins left.. go ahead. :lol:

  34. @Level3: Here we go again. I don’t pore over so I might have missed something but if indeed Mr. Arudou is on ‘the (exteme) left’ I wonder if you could point me to any political organizations/parties he’s mentioned being a member of or even supporting. Also are there any links on his web site to any political organizations/parties or magazines/papers/web sites of ‘the left’? Any ‘call outs’? Any discussions of theory or action/tactics typical of left wingers? Any solidarity(or hint of)with groups favored by ‘the left’? Any union links?

    And Obama,Moore,Gore (and their ilk) are not the icons of the left you seem to think they are. At least not where I’m from.

  35. @Level3:

    Arudou has some elements of left in what he says, but his paranoia and incoherent rage about state institutions and his resentment of rights for women, his bubbing-under homophobia and overall a general sense of thwarted entitlement and envy – that’s teabagger territory.

    As for attacking the majority race making someone left-wing – that’s a really interesting way to view, say, Apartheid era South-Africa. :roll:

    This is why it makes no sense to place him anywhere on the spectrum. Unless your spectrum is a binary Glenn Beck vs. anything to the left of Glenn Beck.(With the codicil that I’m still not convinced that Glenn Beck isn’t a deep cover satirist).

  36. Things that are not necessarily seen as “leftist” in Western Europe/Japan/Australia/New Zealand (that is, the Western world outside of America):

    1. Hating Bush (just about everybody in these countries did)

    2. Liking Obama (seen, in comparison, as a welcome change)

    3. Open immigration (supported by business lobbies the world over)

    4. Anti-discrimination legislation (Really? Even in the U.S. do you think businesses are allowed to refuse to serve someone on the basis of skin color or other markers of ethnicity?)

    5. Being a liberal arts academic (particularly in the field of international relations, in which Debito is, in theory, qualified)

    6. Feeling ambivalent about nuclear power (did somebody say “Merkel”?)

    7. Being litigious (the “suing is my right” philosophy Debito espouses is based on what might be interpreted as usually “conservative” American values about the relationship between the individual and the public)

    8. Having an Ivy League degree (Seriously? You mean from those places where the masters of the universe acquire their education?)

    9. Taking the United Nations seriously (because not everyone believes in the awesomeness of the United States and the beneficence of its foreign policy, and many of those who do don’t believe in its long-term future, so see a law-based international society as far preferable to one where, say, China–or for that matter the jungle–sets the rules)

    10. Believing in rights for racial (often indigenous) minorities.

    Labor unions and satirical political commentators are generally seen as left wing irritants, but necessary for political empowerment and free speech. I’ll give you hate speech laws, but even they the right wing in non-American democracies is not THAT concerned about this.

    That Debito champions anti-discrimination causes is not so much the issue, as commenters here have frequently noted. It is the way that he does it and his insistence that discrimination is THE number one issue in Japan, and the only lens through which one can view the country that is so annoying. The fact that he is a dick that spouts forth false information is salient, not whether he swings left or right.

  37. Wow. Japan is a Western nation? Freudian slip.

  38. There’s a woman reaching out on debs site she’s been here thirty years and needs some advice from someone with some life experience, preferably a woman or at least grown up(leaving me unqualified).
    It’s on the that Eric post. I’m not a deb basher but it’s a pretty young scene over there. I should mind my own business but it’s kinda saddened me.

    Post 108 mari fujisawa.

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