The Land of the Sinking Sun

2013年07月31日 19時18分43秒 | Weblog
The Land of the Sinking Sun
Is Japan’s military weakness putting America in danger?


There is a paradox at the heart of Abe's bluster. Although his calls for a stronger military have worried his neighbors, a decade of budget cuts and a struggling economy means that Japan's military is surprisingly feeble. Despite Abe's bluster, the real threat posed by Japan is not that its military is growing too strong, but that it is rapidly weakening.

Even accounting for the 0.8 percent increase contained in Abe's 2013 budget, Japan's annual defense budget has declined by over 5 percent in the last decade. During the same period, China's defense budget increased by 270 percent (South Korea's and Taiwan's grew by 45 percent and 14 percent, respectively.) In U.S. dollar terms, Japan's defense budget was 63 percent larger than China's in 2000, but barely one-third the size of China's in 2012. In fact, since 2000, Japan's shares of world and regional military expenditures have fallen by 37 percent and 52 percent, respectively. Japan's defense review will likely frighten its neighbors more than it will improve the military.

These figures understate Japan's predicament. Steady declines in defense expenditures over the past decade forced Japan into a series of measures that are beginning to take a toll. In a nation where lifetime employment is the norm, aversion to layoffs and pension cuts have made personnel expenditures virtually impossible to reduce. Consequently, much of the burden fell on the equipment procurement budget, which has declined by roughly 20 percent since 2002. Japanese defense policymakers have coped by extending the life of military hardware, such as submarines, destroyers, and fighter jets. As a result, Japan's focus has shifted from acquisition to preservation, and maintenance costs have skyrocketed: at the end of the Cold War, maintenance spending was roughly 45 percent the size of procurement expenditures; it is now 150 percent.

Because of declining procurement budgets and higher unit costs, Japan now acquires hardware at a much slower rate: one destroyer and five fighter jets per year compared to about three destroyers and 18 fighter jets per year in the 1980s. In the coming decade, Japan's fleet of destroyers stands to be reduced by 30 percent. Although Japan plans to order 42 F-35 fighter jets in the next decade to replace what remains of its aging F-4EJ aircraft, project delays and cost overruns will likely lead to the order's reduction or postponement.

The United States, as Tokyo's principal ally, risks being drawn into a military confrontation. Japan's decline also threatens to undercut the Obama administration's "pivot" towards Asia, as the United States now needs to compensate for Japan's decline.

The United States expects Japan to support its efforts in East Asia and to help ensure that China's rise is peaceful. Indeed, Tokyo played a similar role in the late 20th century, when, despite constitutional restrictions on the use of force, Japan was a respectable military power: as recently as 2002, Japan had the third largest defense budget in the world, with particularly robust, albeit defensive, naval capabilities. Japan's forces in East Asia helped the United States focus its military assets elsewhere without risking instability in the Asia-Pacific region.

Getting back to that place won't be easy, and might even be impossible. A deep structural and economic malaise is at the heart of Japan's military austerity. Japan suffers from the highest public debt levels of any major nation -- 235 percent of GDP -- and a severe budget deficit of 10 percent of GDP in 2012. It has the most rapidly aging population in the world, which means its tax base is shrinking, and its pension and healthcare costs are rapidly mounting. The Japanese government now spends more on debt service and social security than it raises in tax revenues: all other spending, including national defense, is effectively financed through unsustainable debt.

Japan would be better served if Abe's party expands the prime minister's bold economic plan into a long-term reform program that addresses the country's enduring problems: economic stagnation, public debt, and demographic decline. Indeed, Abe's attempts to boost defense spending are unsustainable unless these underlying structural issues are resolved.

Tackling these issues will do far more to restore Japan's international status and credibility than symbolic gestures that stoke nationalism and antagonize Japan's neighbors.





ナチスの憲法改正「手口学んだら」 麻生副総理が発言









(2013年8月1日00時04分 読売新聞)


コメント (2)

橋下氏 一歩前進

2013年07月31日 01時05分15秒 | Weblog


http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/world/news/20130723-OYT1T01117.htm … http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/world/news/20130723-OYT1T01117.htm … 戦場で女性を性の対象として利用してきた人権問題を日本特有の問題とされていることに関してなぜ日本の政治家は異議を唱えないのか!慰安婦像が、日本だけでなく世界各国の戒めと反省の趣旨なら賛成





2013年07月30日 23時57分53秒 | Weblog
(参院の注目新人)就活で自殺、ひどすぎる 吉良佳子氏









アマゾン アメリカのブラック企業?

2013年07月30日 23時24分31秒 | Weblog
TUESDAY, JUL 30, 2013 08:44 PM +0900
Amazon is worse than Walmart
The company's war on bookstores and book culture is increasingly supported by, yes, the Obama administration

Amazon’s also been painted as a pretty terrible place to work: A report on Gawker describes a Tennessee warehouse where employees take forced overtime and perform monotonous work with minimal break time, while a 2011 newspaper report on Amazon’s warehouse in Allentown, Pennsylvania, told of over 100-degree temperatures and “a pace many could not sustain.”

During summer heat waves, Amazon arranged to have paramedics parked in ambulances outside, ready to treat any workers who dehydrated or suffered other forms of heat stress. Those who couldn’t quickly cool off and return to work were sent home or taken out in stretchers and wheelchairs and transported to area hospitals. And new applicants were ready to begin work at any time.

Yesterday 12:48pm
g 70,185L 286

What Is Life Like For an Amazon Worker?

You don't actually get hired by Amazon. Almost everyone is employed by a staffing service. First though, you have to kill an hour and a half of your time filling out an application online and taking insane personality test. I'm not sure why they have such a lengthy test (I've filled out a lot of applications lately and they run anywhere from 15-45 min not 1.5 hours!) since A) this isn't even a monkey's job, its a job your dog could probably grasp and B) they seem to hire anyone who has a pulse.

Next you show up for your "interview" and possible on spot hire. Here you are herded around a series of stations, take some more test that prove that you are able to read or at least recognize the alphabet letters, sit and watch corporate video propaganda and wait on your "interview". Mine was with a very nice young lady who essentially asked if I was a U.S. citizen and asked if I could meet the physical requirements. There's none of that "what are your strengths" business. She essentially ran down all the requirements and questions that I already did online. I think the lady felt a little sorry for me since I was way overqualified and dressed up better than anyone else there so she tried to give me a challenging position although I don't feel this is possible in this line of work....

So now you are about 3 or 4 hours in and of course you don't get paid for any of that time it took to get hired. Training was really funny. They sent many of us to the wrong door of the warehouse (which ain't cool due to its size which I'll explain later), when you go into the right place you are herded once again. The whole process is standing in line, walking or sitting where they tell you and you are behind a big fenced off area. My initial thought was this is prison, the comparisons were obvious. I felt like asking anyone sitting by me or standing in line next to me "so, what are you in for?" It would have been a completely appropriate question.

We watched a hilarious sexual harassment video and than a dude from loss/prevention spoke to us. This was actually the bulk of our training - to have it pounded into everyone's skull not to steal. He claimed there was 500 visible cameras and over 500 more you could not see in the warehouse. They even had to install them in the break room because people's lunches were getting stolen. He yammered on and on about how you will never get away with stealing so please don't try. That they terminated 120 people in 6 months just for theft. And he told funny stories about people getting caught in various ways. Sadly, the number one stolen item is condoms. Sex toys are high up the chain too. After working there a couple days now though, I feel like all cops, he was untruthful and exaggerating. I wouldn't say its easy to steal, especially with having to walk through metal detectors every time you go to lunch or leave the building, but there are ways. And eating the food is definitely possible as I've seen wrappers and other evidence of food on the floor...

I have to touch on the size of this place too. [...] like bigger than 12 city blocks. Last night when I drove to work it took me about 15 min - when you arrive there is a line of cars to get in. Waiting in that line to get to a parking space took 15 min the same time as my commute! There's no way for me to fully describe the size of this place. There are over 7 miles of conveyor belts. The two ends of the warehouse is where product is stored. Think of a library with very small isles. Now imagine over 250 isles deep. Now imagine over 13 long isles across. Now imagine three floors of that. And finally imagine that double since there are two of these "libraries" - one on each side of the building.

Your break is 15 min twice a day and 30 min lunch. But if you are in the wrong place of the warehouse you could easily walk a half mile to a mile to get to break and that time supposedly counts
. So sometimes you get to your break sit down for 5 min and start your fucking hike again...

The job is to scan a cubby, count the shit in the cubby, enter the number into your scanner and repeat this shit for 10 hours. If your count comes up wrong you have to empty the cubby and recount. You are supposed to count 125 cubbies an hour. My second day I did 285 and coulda broke 300 but my battery went out. Ever since than I slack the fuck off and stay around 150 or so. I still have time to look at any book or movie that looks interesting, get plenty of water breaks, stretch, etc. Its not a hard job just monotonous and boring as fuck. The crazy part is the number of people there who can't get 125 counted in an hour. That's like counting one box every 30 seconds. Most boxes have less than 10 items. This brings us to the workforce...

Probably the best thing about working here is the diversity of the workers. All over the fucking map. From a dude that looks like a college professor to people living in their car to grandmothers to mohawk punks and on and on. In one way, I think its cool these people can't meet their quota cause its like 'fuck you this is too much work' but on the other hand I worry for the physical and mental composition of some of these people as this isn't a political statement, they really can't do the job. At the beginning of your shift and after lunch we all do these lame stretching exercises which reminded me of the old 80s videos of Japanese factories where they worked out and shit before shifts and than proceeded to put in more work hours than any other industrialized country. At our stretching circle its a bunch of obese people pretending to stretch.

I have only worked one week now and already we have forced overtime for the unforeseeable future. I have no desire to work more hours but will lose the job if I don't. The only thing working more hours does is take away time from me finding a better job:) Seriously though, I realize I'm in a position of privilege to have better options out there. Some of my co-workers have looked at me like I'm crazy whenever I talk about how shitty this job is and how I am applying for other jobs all the time. Really? Not even a line to blow me off like "well, I just need the money". Its shocking the lack of disgust for their work environment or their lack of wanting to escape from the prison we're all working in.

 休憩も殆どなく、やりたくないのに労働時間を延長させられる、など、アマゾンの労働環境がかなり悪いらしい。 ブラック企業といえるかもしれない。




中国包囲網 US is Encircling China

2013年07月30日 23時18分31秒 | Weblog
US is Encircling China with Fighter Jets and Stealth Bombers
By Zachary Keck

July 30, 2013

Over at Breaking Defense, Colin Clark reports that Carlisle said that the first Air Force F-35’s will be deployed to the Pacific, and are likely to be stationed at bases in Misawa, Japan; Kadena, Japan; Osan Air Base, Korea; and Kunsan Air Base, Korea. Singapore will also purchase the F-35s. Clark also quotes the general as saying the USAF will send "fighters, tankers, and at some point in the future, maybe bombers on a rotational basis," to a base in Darwin, Australia.

Meanwhile, John Reed of Foreign Policy reports that Carlisle also said (in Reed’s words) that the USAF will also be, “sending jets to Changi East air base in Singapore, Korat air base in Thailand, a site in India, and possibly bases at Kubi Point and Puerto Princesa in the Philippines and airfields in Indonesia and Malaysia.” As Reed sums it up, “This means the Air Force will sen[d] large numbers of F-22 Raptors, F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, and B-2 stealth bombers to the region.”

In other news likely to thrill China, in response to a letter from U.S. Representative Robert Andrews (D-NJ), the Defense Department has confirmed it is still considering a request by Taiwan for a design and feasibility study of it potentially purchasing diesel submarines. “The Department of Defense will continue to consider carefully any Taiwan requests for defense articles and services,” Under Secretary of Defense for Policy James Miller said in a response to the letter, according to Taipei Times.



Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support Charity Event

2013年07月30日 23時08分37秒 | Weblog


2013年07月30日 16時39分47秒 | Weblog





2013年07月30日 12時03分27秒 | Weblog
Can We See Our Hypocrisy to Animals?
Published: July 27, 2013

Today, the challenge is factory farming, which produces food exceptionally cheaply, at huge cost in animal welfare.

“There are still tens of billions of animals suffering horribly in factory farms every year, around the world,” Singer told me.

Big Agriculture has dug in its heels, backing “ag gag” laws that punish whistle-blowers who secretly document abusive conditions for livestock or poultry. The House of Representatives recently had the gall to amend the farm bill so as to nullify many state laws protecting farm animals. “In a single legislative act, it could undo two decades of state lawmaking to protect animals,” said Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the United States; let’s hope the Senate-House conference committee will drop this amendment.

McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Safeway, Oscar Mayer, Costco and others had announced in 2012 that they would move away from gestation crates.

Look, I confess to hypocrisy. I eat meat, albeit with misgivings, and I have no compunctions about using mousetraps. So what? We have the same inconsistencies, controversies and hypocrisies in dealing with human rights. We may disagree about waterboarding terror suspects, but almost everyone shares a revulsion for genocide, the use of poison gas or the torture of children.

We may disagree about eating meat, but growing numbers share a disgust for extreme behavior, like the force-feeding of geese (now banned in California) to produce pâté.

We as a global society have crossed the Rubicon. We disagree about where to draw the line to protect animal rights, but almost everyone now agrees that there is a line to be drawn.

May our descendants, when, in the future, they reflect uncomprehendingly on our abuse of hens and orcas, appreciate that we are good and decent people moving in the right direction, and show some compassion for our obliviousness.





 それまでは、動物愛護・権利団体のなりゆきにまかせて、自分はいまでも肉を食らいながら、欧米で同意が形成されつつあるところで、We われわれに同意があるかのように語り、たぶん、そうでない国を今後非難していくのであろう。(ーーー中国のケースも出しているがそれは極めて特殊な例外的ケースであろう)。






The Plight of the Babe in the American Workplace 女性は職場で元気で可愛く?? !

2013年07月30日 11時10分07秒 | Weblog
How S exy Should A Worker Be? The Plight of the Babe in the American Workplace
By Amanda Hess | Posted Monday, July 29, 2013, at 5:28 PM

When the Borgata hires a new babe, it puts her on the scale, then requires her to weigh in periodically throughout her career to ensure that her weight does not increase by more than 7 percent of her initial poundage. If it does, the c asino reserves the right to suspend the babe until she slims down.

Last week, 22 of these babes lost a lawsuit against the c asino. They had alleged that the Borgata discriminated against them based on both weight and s ex. Male servers at the Borgata, they said, are not judged on their babeliness, or their poundage. But Judge Johnson found that the Borgata’s requirements were lega

While the Borgata babes are heading back to the scale, three women who worked for Merrill Lynch have filed suit against the company for s exing up their own job descriptions. The women allege that their employer forced them to attend female-only seminars on how to dress, to act “perky,” and to read a book called Seducing the Boys Club

The book counsels women to stage workplace interactions with their coworkers that play out like “great s ex.” It tells women that it’s “important to reinforce his hunk status,” to tell him “I love you,” and to use comments like “Wow, you look great. Been working out?” to curry favor among their male peers





フィリピンで慰安婦(性奴隷)にされた被害者女性たちが抗議デモ  プラカードの一部文字起こし

2013年07月30日 10時56分57秒 | Weblog

PM Shinzo Abe
We are victims of Japan's military sexual slavery

We are the proof the living witness of Japan's war crime

We want justice now!!

We were forced
We were abused
We were violate
We were raped
by Japanese military during World War II








2013年07月30日 08時27分53秒 | Weblog
米、極秘核施設を同盟国に開示 核の傘、不信拭う狙い







2013年07月30日 08時06分21秒 | Weblog
元駐タイ大使・岡崎久彦 知られざる多国間協議の陥穽
2013.7.30 03:39







主婦が再就職したら経済効果は6兆円以上 "women could actually save Japan

2013年07月30日 07時43分05秒 | Weblog

Mariko Oi | 大井真理子 ‏@MarikoOi 21時間

主婦が再就職したら経済効果は6兆円以上 http://huff.to/1e4RELG Dentsu: If #Japanese women return to work after marriage/kids, \6tr impact http://bbc.in/TgzTC3

24 October 2012 Last updated at 23:02 GMT Share this pageEmailPrint
Japan's women: Can they save the country's economy?
By Mariko Oi
BBC News, Tokyo

"If Japan could close its gender employment gap, we estimate that Japan's workforce could expand by 8.2 million," says Kathy Matsui, a Goldman Sachs strategist.

Ms Matsui has been writing about the importance of women's role in contributing to Japan's economic growth since 1999.

In her latest report she says that increased participation of women in the workforce could boost Japan's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by as much as 15%.

The International Monetary Fund's first female Managing Director agrees.

Christine Lagarde told reporters during the IMF World Bank annual meetings in Tokyo that "women could actually save Japan".


According to Goldman Sachs, less than a third of Japanese children under the age of three spend time at daycare centres.

That is much lower compared to 63% in Denmark, 43% in France, and 40% in the US.


そもそも比較の対象として、フランスや米国をもってくる意義はなにか? 欧米とくらべて、欧米のようになろう、という発想があるとすれば、やめたほうがいい。日本は日本のやり方でやればよい。欧米は欧米で問題がありすぎる。



Attempts to ban the left-wing historian’s works これ日本だったらもっと大騒ぎになるね 

2013年07月29日 23時18分55秒 | Weblog
mozu9 ‏@mozumozumozu 35分
開く 返信 リツイート お気に入りに登録 その他
mozu9 ‏@mozumozumozu 40分
OAH: Daniels/Zinn Controversy a "Teachable Moment" | History News Network http://j.mp/14WUump ハワード・ジンのテキストをめぐる闘争

OAH: Daniels/Zinn Controversy a "Teachable Moment" | History News Network

The Organization of American Historians, headquartered on the Indiana University campus in Bloomington, issued a statement today on the controversy surrounding former Indiana governor Mitch Daniels's attempts to ban the late left-wing historian Howard Zinn's works from Indiana classrooms.




歴史を忘れた民族に未来はない → 韓国、自国が搾取した韓国人性奴隷を忘れている。

2013年07月29日 22時19分14秒 | Weblog





(2013年7月29日20時47分 読売新聞)