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Showing posts from March, 2015

March 22: Large Demonstration and Parade Against Abe in Tokyo

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I went to the large demonstration today at Hibiya in central Tokyo and in the warm, sunny weather, some 10,000 people showed up for the parade to surround the Parliament Building (Diet) - Japan's Palace of Westminster or Capitol Hill...

Update: Kyodo (J) has the number of participants today as 14,000.

The event was also billed as the "Democracy Convention 2015" in English.

If you have ever been to a large demonstration elsewhere, prepare yourself for the utter control here in Japan. Police and riot vans are everywhere, but as long as things go smoothly, like today, you can bring your baby stroller and your grandma... The organizers are committed to peaceful protests and so be it.

But, that may not be the way Japan's Public Security Intelligence Agency sees things, according to Eric Johnston in The Japan Times: Security blanket: Should Japan beef up its anti-terrorism measures?

Great coalition of hundreds of groups for solidarity with Okinawa and labour rights, agains…

Our Wishes (1970)

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"The Things We Desire" or "Our Wishes" is a song by Nobuyasu Okabayashi from July, 1970. It is also about what we do not want.
We do not wish to live and suffer, what we wish is to live to enjoy...
We do not wish to live for the sake of society, what we wish is a society, for us...
We do not wish to be awarded, what we wish is to grab it by ourselves...
We do not wish to kill you, what we wish is to live together with you
Not for the unhappiness we feel, but for the joy yet to come...

Here are two versions:



Live, with his band, Happy End:





What Have They Done To The Rain (1964)

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50 years ago, nuclear bombs were still being tested in the atmosphere, but increasingly, the concern about the radiation fallout ended that horrible practice. 50 years later we still have a few countries that won't give up their nuclear arsenal, and others (including Japan and South Korea) hiding under the so-called nuclear umbrella. Others, like Sweden and South Africa, briefly considered going nuclear, in order to stay independent, as sovereign states. In most - if not  all- the countries that produced nuclear weapons, those are now getting very old and dangerous - and obsolete. Meanwhile nuclear power remains the big question mark for mankind. We need to more clearly see the links between nuclear power and nuclear weapons.

Here is a wonderful song from 1964, by the UK band The Searchers. Song originally written by Malvina Reynolds, and later also recorded by Joan Baez. Here in Japan, the initial contamination from the Fukushima nuclear reactor meltdowns spread through rain in M…

Organic Agriculture Conference in Tokyo, GMO Free Zone Meeting In Kumamoto, Osaka Action Meeting Against Takahama Nuclear Plant...

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Care for healthy food and want to join the discussion how to make it better, here in Japan...

Busy weekend!

How about joining the Japan Organic Agriculture Association conference in Tokyo this weekend? JOAA is the oldest organic group in Japan, founded in 1970. They are known abroad for their work promoting teikei, which is a system to connect farmers and consumers. While similar schemes have evolved in other countries, like the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) trend, teikei is about more - how agriculture can support communities.

I will speak in a panel on Sunday March 8, but there is a lot to do and enjoy during the 2 days, including films and seminars by Japanese organic farmers and experts. For more, check out the JOAA website about teikei (E) and details about the conference (J) on March 7-8, 2015 at the Kokugakuin University in Shibuya. Tema: Healthy food and soil for our children.

If you are in Kumamoto, you can attend the GMO Free Zone Meeting on Saturday March 7. This…