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Comment Re:As someone who lives near the Fukushima plant: (Score 1) 167

(seppuku) was originally a samurai ritual and there aren't any samurai left. Japan still has a very high suicide rate, but big businessmen, bankers and government minions are much more westernized now - they've turned into self-centered weasels.

No bankers are throwing themselves off of buildings. Those would be people in financial trouble, bullied kids, rejected lovers, lonely singles and people who were left with nothing. They lost their homes and livelihoods after having to evacuate from the plant area, but got virtually nothing from TEPCO.

Comment As someone who lives near the Fukushima plant: (Score 5, Interesting) 167

Here are photos and an article in National Geographic from the massive quake and tsunami in the same area in 1896. Almost 27,000 people were killed and a tsunami was reported as high as 50 feet.


The excuse that the tsunami was unprecedented and a "once in a 1,000- year event" is false.

The take away for me after five years is that it was criminally incompetent to not have planned for the possibility of a similar event so recent that there are photographs of it.

The engineers involved in the construction and operation should be in prison.

Disclaimer: I have a BSME with a Nuclear option, and I should be in prison if I had anything to do with the plant. I also live within 90 miles of the plant and remember thinking that I was in serious jeopardy when I saw a helicopter dropping water onto the stored fuel rods on TV. When the helicopters come out, it's the last straw.

Comment Another reason... (Score 1) 267

Japanese universities are already partners in technology development with Japanese companies, as universities around the world are partners with companies in their country.

Japan will lose a quarter of its population in about a generation from now, so the country must transform from the traditional economic engines of growth (manufacturing, services, etc.) to offset the inevitable decline that will occur in those engines.

Japan, with encouragment from the US, sees defense technology R&D, manufacturing, licensing and export as a growth industry it hasn't been a part of.

The US has encouraged Japan to do this, since the US depends on funding from Japan to maintain the large military presence it has in Japan. The US can't afford the bases in Japan by itself.

The US wants Japan to become a more "normal" nation, as the US calls it, by being proactive in the US-Japan alliance, instead of being only a self defense entity, because the US may be forced to reduce its presence in the future from US political/budget problems.

The executive summary is:

War is big business.

Comment Re:Hyperbolic Stories About Laser Illumination Inc (Score 2) 161

So, it has to cause permanent blindness before it passes the Anonymous Idiot test?

How can anyone be so wrong about "not one single person..." in this age of Google?

The list goes on and on.

Comment Sigh... (Score 1) 360

I've lived in Japan for almost 25 years. Here we go again with another new-to-Japan reporter writing about things they don't understand completely out of context. And even outright nonsense...

Comment If you want to hire the brightest (Score 0) 249

you'll have a hard time finding them among US kids.

The US ranks 36th in the world in math, reading and science. The top seven are all from Asia. More than 25% of the US are below the median, and only 8% are above. More than 55% of the top seven countries are above the median and only about 8% are below.

There is the problem. While you're giving everyone trophies and thinking about the racial mix of a classroom, the rest of the world is studying.

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