Showing posts from July, 2013

Ospreys Over Tokyo?

Soon, it may be that we have those US Marines flying Osprey helicopters not only on Okinawa but also from Yokota, right next to Tokyo. Or so we are told. Of course they are just "studying" this at the moment.

I wonder where they would fly. East and over the capital of Japan? Or north, over
Saitama? And then? What would they be doing here, if not to cause a lot of anguish and trouble.

Or, perhaps, just straight up, and then down again...

Elevator flights bringing young recruits up and down again and again over that old US base, LOL.

NHK World:

US Air Force studying Osprey deployment in Yokota The US Air Force is studying the deployment of the Osprey transport aircraft at Yokota Air Base in Tokyo, in addition to a US base in Okinawa.
Commander of the US Pacific Air Forces, General Herbert Carlisle, revealed this in Washington on Monday.
The US Air Force is considering the CV-22 Osprey as a successor to its special operations helicopter now based at the Kadena Air Base in Ok…

Brutus: About Organic Farming

Surprise, surprise. Brutus goes organic and introduces farms in Denmark and Canada that do without agro-chemicals, be it herbicides or pesticides or any other man-made poison.

This is a glossy Magazine House men's style magazine with a long history here, that usually carries ads for expensive watches and hand-made leather shoes, so I was glad to see they devote quite some space to Yoshikazu Kawaguchi, a great guy in Nara I met some time ago, who practices natural farming in the tradition of Masanobu Fukuoka (and many others in the old days).

Et tu, Brutus, har har. Has it come to this? When more people care about food and the environment, I guess it will ultimately become trendy even among the people with more money than sense. Hope it is not another case of too little, too late. I like the 26 summer salad recipes, yummy. I'll label this as "progress" nevertheless.

Brutus # 759 (J)

Taro Yamamoto And Some Thoughts On The Election Results

Great to see Taro Yamamoto get enough votes as an independent candidate in Sunday's election. He has worked hard for it since 2011 to get into Parliament, when he had to split with his record company due to his anti-nuclear comments on the Internet. Good for him.

He paints a picture of someone like himself punching small holes in the huge concrete dam that is the current political situation, very inflexible and difficult to change. But even tiny holes can create a powerful leverage to crush that state of mind...

Not so great that the two green party candidates - while getting a lot of votes - did not make it. Also, not so great that Finland-born Marutei Tsurunen, a supporter of organic farming and generally a great guy, who spoke out against racism and took a great interest in the disaster prevention measures after the earthquake and tsunami, did not get re-elected. I wish him well, I have met him and Japan's parliament could need a lot more people of his ilk. Kiitos!


Temple Stay: Lower Stress In Your Mind, Reduce Antibiotics In Your Body

Dr. Greger has a great website, Nutrition Facts, with numerous videos and information about diet and health. He promotes a plant-based diet, full stop. Not a semi-vegetarian, not a Meat-Free Mondays, no fooling around diet. But, as he points out, most diseases are caused by bad diet.

His advice is strictly based on recent scientific studies. Here is why I like him - there is no way I can keep up with all that is published in peer reviewed specialized journals. He does. Subscribe, and I promise it will be eye-opening and life-changing.

Here is a video that caught my eye - Dr. Greger talks about a group of South Korean researchers who looked at what happens to people who join one of the popular Temple Stay programs. This was a way for many people to enjoy the World Cup in Japan/South Korea back in 2002. Since South Korea didn't have so many hotels near their different new arenas, Buddhist temples in rural areas were invited, and encouraged, to let football fans from around the world …

Oliver Stone To Visit Hiroshima, Nagasaki and Okinawa In August

This could get interesting.

In an event that celebrates the 120th anniversary of the establishment of the Ryukyu Shimpo, the newspaper will invite two-time Academy Award-winning director Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick, professor of History at American University to Okinawa.

The event will feature a lecture by Stone with a panel discussion. Stone will also get to observe the U.S. military bases in Okinawa for the first time. With Satoko Norimatsu from the Peace Philosophy Centre as interpreter, the discussion will cover the excessive burden on Okinawa of hosting bases and U.S. military strategy. Some of the works of Stone and some digest footage of his visit to the prefecture will also be shown.

Venue: Theater building of the Okinawa Convention Center in Ginowan

On August 6 Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick will take part in a symposium in Hiroshima, and on August 8 they will visit Nagasaki. Their documentary The Untold History of the United States is currently being shown on NHK BS…

Earth Garden Tokyo Tataku

Big event this weekend - a festival for the future, with Taiko drumming in Tokyo (thus the tataku, hitting theme) Don Don!

Do visit with info about artists, music, food and talk show presentations. Plus the unexpected. We are so lucky to live in a peaceful part of the world. Let's make sure it stays that way. Project Fukushima is attending too, very unhappy with how they are being treated. But this weekend the focus is on bringing the message to people.

This is all about people who have been doing a lot to make this happen. (J) (J) (J)

Festival for Future connects central Tokyo with Tohoku and Fukushima; this is another great event at Yoyogi Park near Shibuya, Tokyo. Visit the market and  the Stage for the Future.

Image of Rina Katahira from Fukushima Fair Mini Performace news.

7/6sat 片平里菜の出演が決定しました!

How To Stop A Road That Will Destroy Your Local Park?

Kodaira, western Tokyo, is one of those towns that need more greenery, not less. It also has plenty of train lines to connect, as well as buses. And don't think there are no roads for cars, already...

I was approached by some people with great concern for their local park, the Central Park of Kodaira, it is just next to a couple of universities and colleges, clearly a green lung with a lot of support from the local community. They have several NGOs bringing kids in, such as the Donburi no Kai (Acorn Group) to teach values of nature. Now that entire park may be destroyed by the construction of a road initially planned back just before the Tokyo Olympics in 1964... Talk about irony as Tokyo is once again trying to get the Olympics for 2020...

If you live in the area, time to do something. Join the groups and NGOs that protest this useless "development" and get Tokyo to move away from cars that pollute and cause climate change. We know better. We ought to know better.

But t…

Pensions...? You Think GPIF Will Pay You Your Pension?

I beg your pardon. But if you thought you are paying into a cleverly thought-out pension scheme. Well, think again.

Link (E) Government Pension Investment Fund

As of April 1, 2006, the new Government Pension Investment Fund (new GPIF) was established as an independent administrative institution with the mission of managing and investing the Reserve Funds of the Employees' Pension Insurance and the National Pension , taking over the responsibilities of the old Government Pension Investment Fund, which was dissolved in March 31 2006.

Propaganda: Dream within a dream - Outside World Tour 1985

Needless to say, the Reserve Funds entrusted to the new GPIF are one of the precious sources of revenue financing the payment of future pension benefits. We, the new GPIF, are determined to make every effort to manage and invest the Reserve Funds safely and efficiently, sticking to the principle of diversified investment from the long term perspective, and implementing appropriate risk m…

TPP In The News

Trade negotiations are going to be really big news in July. Prepare yourself. It may be like the Battle of Seattle all over again, except this time Japan can only join the real show, if Washington agrees, at a very late date. Akira Amari, Japanese Economic Revitalization Minister, thinks this "represents the core for Japan's economic growth."

Democracy? Sovereignty? You be the judge.

As NHK World notes:

The Japanese government has increased its negotiating team for the upcoming Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade talks. Japan will join the negotiations for the first time. The talks are already in their fourth year. The next round of multinational negotiations will be in Malaysia starting July 15th. Japan is to take part in the 10-day talks starting on the 23rd.

Well? The US has not yet decided if Japan may join or not. Once the United States of America decides, Japan may or may not join the TPP talks starting on the 23rd (not when everyone else starts). And unt…