Friday, May 31, 2013

Sequels in May 2013

May 19, 2013
Settlers of Catan, an excellent board game

I have some CATAN computer games. In Japan, CATAN with Play Station 3 is available. The AI is so weak that I seldom lose the game. The other day the match was an extremely close fight.




May 18, 2013
Doubtful bills about public welfare in Japan

The bill was partially corrected with an agreement between the ruling party and some opposites. The new bill allows the applicant to ask for public welfare without filling complicated forms of documents. It is a little change, but important.


May 14, 2013
Mr. Hashimoto recommend soldiers to use sex industries: true meanings and meaningless

At last Mr. Hashimoto withdrew his comment about comfort women. Criticism against him was continuing. He gained no fruit with this scandal, though some nationalists might support him.
I am sorry that he made a trouble on his own, although his policy about Osaka is admirable.


May 11, 2013
DSM-5: New mental disorders are approaching

I have not gotten DSM-5 yet, because a stock at Amazon.co.jp was exhausted.
I truly hope that this kind of books is published on Kindle or any other electric media.


May 9, 2013
Reform of Mental health act in Japan

The bill of the new Mental Health and Welfare Act had passed the Upper House. It will be established soon. It is our own responsibility to make use of the new legislation appropriately.


May 7, 2013
SoftBank vs. DishNetwork

The battle between Softbank and Dish is entering chaotic situation. Dish declared to buy Clearwire out from Sprint. This trial will interrupt the next move of Softbank. The result is hard to predict.

The Wall Street Journal: Analysts Say Dish’s New Clearwire Bid Could Hurt Sprint-SoftBank

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Decreased patients with mental disorders in Japan?

How many people in Japan with mental disorders?

It is almost 3 million. The patient survey performed by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare clarified the answer.


Three million is not a few numbers, but the rate of the patients who have mental disorders in the general population in Japan is not so high, rather quite low among developed countries.


I guessed that Japanese patients with mental disorders do not tend to visit a mental clinic. Stigma against mental disorders is still strong. Moreover, many Japanese think that depression is to be overcome by one’s own effort or power of the soul. Recently, knowledge about depressive disorders is spreading among business persons. So, patients diagnosed as depression would be increasing gradually, I had prospected.

However, the prediction of mine has been broken, since 2011.

A number of the patients with mental disorders was decreased in 2011 from 2008.
Actually, the data in 2011 are incomplete, because of the earthquake and Tsunami disaster in 3.11. The adjusted data shows that the number of the patients with mental disorders is continued for 3 years.

Among several mental disorders, dementia and mood disorders were rapidly increasing. In 2011, dementia was increased as I had predicted. But mood disorders, including depression, were decreased.
Why?

I have not found the true answer. It is a quite difficult problem.
There is no report proving that depression is reduced after a disaster. Could not many patients visit to a mental hospital? The influence of the destruction of mental hospitals on this statistic is not so strong. People committed suicide is not increasing, as I wrote, even if Japan is still suicide rich country.

The next survey will be performed in 2014. The result of it will show me an answer.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Yahoo will get Hulu?

Yahoo declared to bid on Hulu.

Yahoo bids on Hulu: Is Mayer another Bartz?

Hulu is an internet service of watching movies and TV programs. The service has been available also in Japan since 2011. I joined Hulu and enjoyed "Sherlock" series by BBC. The other hundreds of drama are listed up. The fee is only $10 per month.

Yahoo is a big company dealing with internet services. The other day Yahoo Japan was the symbol of internet search in Japan, before Google rose. I use Yahoo e-mail and Yahoo auction. But recently Yahoo! is losing his presence.

I knew Ms. Marissa Mayer, the CEO of Yahoo from the news that Yahoo abolished work from home. I feel her decision as both radical and conservative. Is Yahoo changing?

The amount of money Yahoo offered for Hulu is said as between $600 million and $800 million. Some analysts say the true value of Hulu is $1bn or $2bn.

At least 7 companies including DIRECTV and Time Warner Cable are showing the intention to bid.

The issue most concerned about the bid is whether the license contract between the film providers and the new owner of Hulu would be maintained. If negotiation fails, it is possible that lots of movies will be erased. Then this purchase will do damage to both the winning company and the consumers.

Actually, Hulu is not so popular in Japan. Japanese providers seem to be passive to open their films.
I think that the business model of the TV with advertisement is collapsing. Most companies will have to change their strategy.
I will watch up this battle of purchase.

(*sequel)

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Rules of criticism

Today, I read an article about a life hack of criticism whose title was “The four rules to criticize others start.

This entry quotes a saying of Mr. Daniel Dennett, a philosopher and cognitive scientist.

I had readied my own answer to the question about 4 rules of criticism. I think it is a good way of thinking to predict the answer of the author before continuing reading. However, the answers presented by the author were a little different from mine.

The author wrote;
(1) Try to reconsider the opponent's position with empathy.
(2) Pick up the points that you can partially agree with the opponent.
(3) Express about what you learned from the opponent.
(4) And you can criticize or oppose him.

Well, these techniques are useful for you to respect your opponent. A person who feels respected from you would be able to accept your advice, even if it is critical. Respect for each other will help constructive discussion between them.

My own answers were below;
(1) First, declare that you appreciate your opponent
(2) Criticize the opponent's opinion, never the personality.
(3) You should present an alternative plan, if you deny the opponent's idea.
(4) Always be conscious that the purpose of discussion should be constructive, not to be victorious.

I am confident about my own answers. But they are a little negative compared to the author's. I enjoyed learning today.

Monday, May 27, 2013

G-cluster. a device for cloud gaming

A new game platform will launch in the next month.

G-cluster, a cloud gaming machine, will start to be sold on June 20th. You can buy a set of a main machine and a controller with $140, unfortunately the service will be available only in Japan.

The main machine of G-cluster does not calculate any code of the program to run a computer game. It only sends the data via Wi-Fi to a cloud server in the data center. The server sends back the data to your TV monitor. So you can play the games as if you possess a gaming machine with a speedy CPU.

This kind of system has been widely used already. For example, Siri, a digital secretary attached in iPhones send the voice of yours to cloud to be analyzed and answer your request.

Cloud programming has some advantages. Cost for introduction is quite low for customers. The G - cluster machine has only 45g. You can attach it to the back of your TV. Software providers also have merit. Streaming is hardly to be tracked. Therefore the risk of spreading of an illegal copy of software is low. If a critical problem occurred, the provider only has to stop the streaming, not have to collect the devices of the software.

Of course, the speed of communication can be a bottom neck. The other day, the speed of communication with line of telephone or ISDN was not so high. So, there were only some light games in the internet cloud. Nowadays, we can watch a high resolution movie at home. And internet gaming is also approaching.

The lineup of G-cluster includes Assassin's Creed II, Ys I & II Chronicles and some popular title. We can enjoy them even now.

Consumer games with TV are supported strongly by some lovers. I am one of them.
Recently, OUYA, a new kind of game console was developed supported by cloud funding.
Nintendo’s Family Computer (Nintendo Entertainment System) was a so called “Soul Hobby” among our generation.

So, I pray the success of G-cluster. However, I am afraid that it is a little difficult.
The market of computer games is now a red ocean. Even Nintendo and Sony Computer Entertainment are suffering. Moreover, internet shopping with a Credit Card is not so common among Japanese adolescents, though an internet account with a Credit Card is needed to use G-cluster. It is unclear whether G-cluster will break in Japan.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Riots in Sweden: the true reason?

Riot acts have occurred in Stockholm since May 19th. Groups of youth smashed shop windows, ignited fireworks, and threw stones to firefighters. Destruction in several areas was continuing and over 29 persons have been arrested.

Some media say that these destructive events are a response to the case of an old armed man killed by the police occurred on May 13th.
Megafornen, an association of civil activists in Stockholm, published a comment that the rioters were angry against the cruel acts as usual of the police.

Many media also mention the difficulty of the policy on immigration. The fact that a lot of immigrants live at Husby, where the first riot occurred, made them consider about this matter.

However, according to the Guardian, the reason of the riots is complicated. The main complaint of the violent youths may be unemployment.

The Guardian: Swedish riots rage for fourth night

Today I watched an article described by a Japanese scholar live in Sweden.

Sweden Now: About the riot at a suburb area in Stockholm (in Japanese)

He guesses that the riot was not so organized, and had no intention of political intention. Youths make sometimes tricky behaviors as usual, such as at the end of the year. Their immature activities were escalated for some reasons. And the activists made use of these events for their own propaganda, the author says.

I do not know the truth. But I remember the similar cases occurred in the UK in 2011. The series of riots began after the shooting case of Black man killed by the police. However, it is quite doubtful that members participated in the riots had political intention.

There are some risks to occur destruction. Nevertheless, it is difficult to control, even identify them. Even if a certain event ignited the rioters, it is not certain that the event is the true motivation of the riot act.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Article for everybody, somebody or nobody

There are two types of opinions; ones acceptable for anyone and ones not.

Some examples of the former are below: Peace! Be sincere! Get rid of discrimination! Make the world for happiness of all of us!
These are correct without exception. And it is so valueless.

In Japan, we often say to others “Ganbare!”, that means “make efforts”. I hear foreigners hardly understand this word. Can asking for an endeavor help you solve the problem in front of you? In an ironic saying, “Ganbare” means only “I have no idea!”.

There are innumerous people and their own opinions. The opinions acceptable for anyone are valueless, or at least include some critical invisible limitation.

Some politicians make errors about this, as I wrote. Reduce taxes, improve welfare, economic growth: it is no doubt that they are all important. However, to accomplish all of them is an illusion.

On the other hand, some opinions are hardly acceptable for some people. Discussion and decision making is needed. Strengthen a restriction, increase taxes, cost cutting, restructure, and so on. Every opinion worth to consider is opposed by some people. If your claim was severely criticized, you should be proud, for you made a controvertible opinion.

This story continues. In an article, besides an opinion, the third type exists.
The articles which are comfortable for everyone will inform you nothing. The article including a strong opinion will demand you to decide your attitude, to support or against it.
And the third type of articles has multiple points of view. The stance of the author is not clarified in some cases. Therefore, you will not able to either support or opposite it. Nobody can support this article completely. The purpose of this kind of articles is to make you think deeply.

Today, I met one example of this kind of article. It is an opinion paper (in Japanese) about so called “comfort women” through an interview with Mr. Yasuaki Ohnuma, a jurist. The author is Ms. Shoko Egawa, a journalist. I do not agree with her opinion completely. Nevertheless, her manuscript lets me consider from various angle about this issue. It was an excellent paper.

You can write all of the three types of articles if you wish.
The articles for everyone have no value, but are suitable for some situation; an entry sheet, an introduction, or a homepage of yours.
The articles for somebody are the expression of your own opinion. You should be prepared for criticism.
And the article for nobody will be able to lead some discussion or movement. This kind of articles is also valuable as a resource of archive.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Manic depressive illness by Johannes Lange, an ancient concept

Recently, I got a book describing about mood disorders.
This is titled as “The Theory of Manic Depressive Illness by Johannes Lange”. It is translated version into Japanese of the textbook “Die endogenen und reakiven Gemutserkrankungen und die manisch-depressive Konstitution”, published in 1928 originally. This one was sent by a certain mental hospital for us. I appreciate them very much. I am also thankful for the translator.
You buy one at Amazon.co.jp by $63 (in Japanese). Unfortunately, I have failed to find the original German version.

It is an ancient record. The author says that manic depressive illness (MDI) was a genetic disease from several observations of twin patients. The symptoms of MDI are described in detail. Relationship between basic temper and the type of illness is also included into consideration. At last the author claims that the best way of the treatment of MDI is prevention of onset. What do you think about it? So, it is limitation of marriage of the patients!

For the honor of the author, I must empathize the fact that the author had no intention to forbid the marriage of the patients. He was only willing to warn the risk of inheritance of the disease to the patients.

The 1920s was so called as the dark age of psychiatry. Tranquilizers were introduced in 1950s for the first time. Even electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) or lobotomy had not established yet. (ECT is now available for treatment resistant psychosis in spite of any disadvantages. Lobotomy is no more allowed.)

Actually, the author introduces continuous bathing therapy or oral intake of opium as an option of treatment in this book. These are ridiculous at all in modern medical science.

The concept of MDI has changed repeatedly. The Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM; the latest version was released on Wednesday, as I wrote) defines Bipolar I and II Disorder, not MDI, in mood disorders. In 2000s, Mr. Hagop Souren Akiskal presented a broad spectrum of mood disorders which is partially accepted in the academic field. According to him, the prevalence rate of the soft bipolar spectrum is reached to even 10%. MDI mentioned by Mr. Johannes Lange is far from soft bipolar spectrum, isn't it?

Science is always progressive. It is common that a theory in yesterday is denied today. However, we also have to respect for ancient thoughts. It is possible that some critical points of view are described in past forgotten records.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Do you like work?

Some people say that it is the best way of life to do your favorite thing as your job.
Other people say it is nonsense. According to them, job is to do what other people do not want to do.
Which opinion do you agree with?

It is no doubt neither is absolutely right. If you truly like your own job, it would be happy about you. However, some time you will face with a great wall of difficulty. Fondness cannot secure joy in every time. On the other hand, even if you hate your job, you may have some unique ability to commit your own work. Perhaps it is tolerance. Then, you can spend money you get from your work for leisure. It compensates for your patience.

I think there are two types of persons. One is fond of work. Work is a part of him. Some entrepreneurs are included. For them, getting rid of work is rather a torture. Twenty-four hours are on time.

In Japan, many business persons were deemed to be this type.
However, it is a little doubtful, I think now.

Some people do not like work. They work for necessity, to earn money to survive. Even persons with the excellent talents of business do not want to work excessively. They take a long vacation. And they are dreaming to retire from work in early age as soon as possible.

It is generally said that this type of thought is common in Southern European countries. Is it true?

Actually, in Japan, early retirement was not an option for most business people. Therefore, we thought that the work was a oblige even if dislike it. The historical situation and cultural trait made our thought. Thought against work is various in spite of nationality. It is the matter of one's priority.

Therefore it is quite important to match the individual trait and demand of working. Forced work is miserable, as same as forced vacation.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Does topless become legal? Current trend and future

New York City police officers are told not to arrest women who show her breasts in public, as the New York Times says. Is it really?
In the US, baring the breasts in public is deemed to be legal, according to the state's highest court.

Baring one's breasts are sometimes used as an appeal for female activists. Ms. Amina Tyler, a topless activist was arrested by Tunisian authorities this week. Femen, the group she belongs to, made a movement of women activity with their performance of topless. Ms. Holly Van Voast, a performance artist, stripped in public such as Times Square, even in the court.

I think that there are two reasons why female activists bare their breasts.
One, to show the breast in public is an easy way to attract attention. Everybody has to watch at her breasts, if in the face of it, either men or women. Moreover, sacrificing her dignity to claim her own opinion may seem to be frank and hungry.
The other factor is that breasts of women are deemed to be a symbol of discrimination between men and women. Several women claimed that it was not rational for women to be forced to hide her breasts not likely in the case of men. Walking in public with bared her breasts represent equality of the sex for them.

Should topless be justified? My opinion is, probably yes. To begin with, topless for women was not a taboo in a certain culture such as in some countries in Latin America or Africa. They are relatively tolerated for nursing a baby in public in Asian countries. On the other hand, traditionally breasts and nipples are deemed as a sex organ in Western countries. So, bared breasts were restricted. Culture is changeable.

By the way, if topless trend were spread, what would happen? I am afraid that acceptance for topless women would not lead to respecting of women’s right. There are innumerable discrimination for women. The first matter to be eliminated is not against topless, I think. Furthermore, if topless women become more common, it would be difficult to attract attention with topless  for activists. It is also ironic.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Okinawa resort hotels more (2)


Renaissance Resort Okinawa equips some cafe terraces.
The whole cake was sold by only $5! It cannot be.


Some other cakes and baked breads were also on sale. They looked like delicious, but I did not order because I had full stomach then.

This is a view from the window of my guest room. You feel an atmosphere of a resort, aren't you? Unfortunately, it was a cloudy day. Actually, I seldom met a sunny day in Okinawa 


The day was not so hot. Few persons were in the sea.

Beside the beach, some water tanks settled in which tropical fishes swam.
He is a little resemble to me.


The next day, I stayed CoCo Garden Resort Okinawa.


This one was better than Renaissance, I think. The room was gorgeous, and interior design was splendid.


Okinawa offered me fully satisfaction whenever I visit there. It is the resort in Japan.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Okinawa resort hotels more (1)

The last weekend, I visited Okinawa again. Okinawa has inexhaustible charm.

I stayed at two resort hotels sequently. They belong to the same chain.

Renaissance Resort Okinawa is one of resort facilities with hotel and beach activities. It is located in the center area of Okinawa main island. All rooms are faced to the ocean.


The entrance is gorgeous.


However, the main hall looks like a little casual. I imagined an Asian shopping mall.


A huge parakeet stood on a branch in the center of the main hall. He (or she?) always cried well. I could hear the voice whenever staying at my guestroom.


You can drink fresh juices in a cafe terrace in front of the beach.


The level of amenity was so so. The Busena Terrace I had visited was far superior, and of course far expensive.

(To be continued)

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Settlers of Catan, an excellent board game

I love Role Playing Game. I sometimes play computer games other than RPSs too. And I also like analog games.

Chess, Backgammon, and Monopoly are quite famous analog games. They are played all over the world. Championship tournament has been performed.

Some traditional board games such as Chess, Shogi, and Go is so sophisticated that a lot of people play them. However, it needs skill and experience to play them well. On the other hand, modern board games are made to play easy for beginners.

Germany is one of the countries where board games are very popular. Many board games were created since 1990s mainly in Germany. Among them, Settlers of Catan is the best one.

The theme of Catan is the development of the island. All players act a role of settlers. We should build some roads, settlements and Cities. We gain resources from each terrain. Each resource can be traded with other players. So you have to collaborate with others. To accomplish a trade, you should make a win-win deal. But, the winner is only one player.

Catan has a lot of advantages as a board game. The main rule is quite easy to understand. The map is variable every game. Therefore, the best strategy is hardly found. An element of luck with dice make the game vulnerable for each player. Moreover, we can learn about strategy, tactics and negotiation skill with the game.

If you have never touched board games, I strongly recommend Catan.

Next month, I will participate in a tournament game of Catan.


(*sequel)

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Doubtful bills about public welfare in Japan


On May 17, 2013, the Japanese Cabinet adopted the bills about welfare and social security.

The Japan Times: Bill would get tough on welfare cheats

These bills aim to reduce the cases of welfare cheat to maintain the system of public welfare.
In Japan, number of the person who are welfare recipients is increasing up to 2.1 million. Mass media reported the cases of welfare cheat repeatedly. The ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has continued to claim about the necessity of reform of the legislation.

However, I am extremely doubtful about the fairness of the bills.

First, the rate of welfare cheat is only 1.8%, according to the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (an official report in Japanese). Even if there may be some unrevealed cases, the percentage is not so problematic. If examination for adopting public welfare performed more strictly, not a few people who need some aid would be excluded, to starve.

The new bill will justify for officials to demand the relatives of applicant of public welfare to support him. Familial support is one of the dogmas of LDP, not so surprising. However, it is dangerous in a certain situation.
Imagine that an official knock your door. He says suddenly to you, “Good morning. You have an uncle who has no enough money to survive. You have an obligation to support him. Look after him, bye!” You do not know that you had an uncle. You telephone to your old mother in a hurry. She says, “Yeah, he is my brother! He went out my home 20 years ago after quarreling with my parents. After that, I have never seen him. He did not appear even in Father’s funeral.”
In this case, you should take care of the uncle. Certainly?

I do not agree to the new bills at all. They will make the society bloodthirsty. I will accept more payment of tax, instead of the restriction of public welfare.

I guess that most people in Japan cannot imagine that they will be an applicant of public welfare.

Indeed, a lot of people will face a financial crisis. Most recipients of public welfare are disabled, patients with chronic illness, or aged. They feel shameful and are hesitating to participate in social activity. Individually, I know some persons a little arrogant, but they are rare.

Japan Daily Press: Welfare recipients feel shame, inferior to society because of financial restrictions

The government tries to aid the recipients to get a job. It is a worthy challenge, but not realistic with some exception. We must work hard, if can, at least to support ungifted people in our society.


(*sequel)

Friday, May 17, 2013

Three rules to distinguish a worthy document from others

We read a lot of documents every day. There are many documents which are worth to read deeply. However, a lot of documents are less useful.
We have no much time to read all documents we saw. Therefore we should distinguish worthy documents from others.

In general, we select reports or other manuscripts with the title first. An interesting title fascinate us. But, some documents are difficult to evaluate only with the title, especially academic documents. And, every author is much concerned about the title to make you read the document. We often experience a book with an aggressive title has been revealed to be empty in the content.

Actually, I think the title is not available to examine the content of the documents. So, what should we pay attention to?

There is no golden principle, though my standard is the three rules below;

(1) Read the document randomly through a several pages.

If you think the contents are evidently incorrect, it is useless.
If you know almost all of the contents, it is useless too.
If you do not know the content well, it is possible to be worthy for you.
If you do not know the content at all, it may be worthy, but not for you, unfortunately.
The point is that you should read randomly first. A good document is written for you can understand from wherever you start to read at.

(2) Read the reference part of the document.

If the document does not refer to anything, it is less worthy. Of course, the poems are exceptional.
If the document refers to some famous persons, you should judge the quality.
I think internet documents refer to only some Tweets are not worthy, especially they are media reports, for it is not difficult to gain some comments from the Tweeter.
In academic documents, both the quality and the quantity are good standards of the value.

(3) Read the last paragraph of the document.

There are two types of the documents. Some describe the conclusion. Others not.
The is no difference between the two. The choice is yours. If you need some conclusion about the issue the document describes about, you should pick one.

So, I recommend  you to read for a minute only first. That's all.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Regulation against drunken driving in the US

In the US, a discussion has risen about drunken driving.

The New York Times: States Urged to Cut Limit on Alcohol for Drivers

According to this article, the National Transportation Safety Board recommended to reduce the allowable level of the blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) from 0.08 percent to 0.05.

It is not surprising that beverage companies were opposed to this opinion.
On the other hand, I am astonished that the US has such a loose regulation about drunken driving.

In Japan, drunken driving is strictly restricted. The allowable level of alcohol while driving is 0.15 mg / 1l expired air. It is equal to 0.03 percent of the BAC. In a case of violation, your driving license would be suspended for at least 90 days immediately.

Actually, 0.03 percent of BAC causes a sure effect on the human brain. I am doubtful the person can make any decision precisely in this situation.

In Japan, there were a lot of death cases due to traffic accidents. In 1995, 15,147 were killed in traffic accidents. But the number of fatal cases has reduced to 7,499 in 2008, according to the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare.

Perhaps, one of the reasons is official restriction for drivers.
The regulation against drunken driving had fastened since 2002. Moreover, the penalty was strengthened in 2009. I remember the consciousness of the office workers had changed. Nowadays, no one is brave to drink even a glass of beer before driving. If an officer were arrested by drunken driving, he would be fired without exception.

Now, fastening a seat belt is mandatory for not only the driver but also all fellows in Japan. This also may contribute to avoid fatal accident.
After all, Japan has overcome the large number of traffic accidents. It is a rare example of successful regulation in Japan I think.

Therefore, I appreciate the restriction of alcohol while driving in the US. The drinker would hate the restriction. But they will be used for the new regulation soon, as the Japanese did.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Iron Man 3: a joke movie

The last week, I watched Iron Man 3 at late time.

I like movies about American comics. My favorite is X-Men 3. Spider-man, Batman, and The Avengers are also fun.


By the way, Iron Man, actually, I like him so so.

Mr. Tony Stark, the fighting president, has both genius talent and tricky character. He is not a pleasant man. He knows his own ability well, and he often behaves arrogantly. It is one of his humane charisma. However, his poor joke causes a disastrous result in Iron Man 3.

The enemy of Iron Man 3 makes me imagine a group of a cult. The diagram of Iron Man vs. the master was so symbolic. Iron Man was fighting as the bringer of justice to eliminate the cult. It is too simplistic for me as a storyline.

There were many machine working automatically in the movie. It was also boring. If every war-machine were able to manipulate with computer, Iron Man would need not work by himself, isn’t it?

There were some other scenes unreal. I enjoyed them as a joke, but they were not worthy to watch with excitement.

Visions of Iron Man 3 was splendid. I watched it in the 2D version, but I guess the 3D version would be better.

I hear Iron Man 3 accomplished a record of sale. I do not appreciate it so much. Of course not bad. However, I understood it was a kind of joke movie.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Mr. Hashimoto recommend soldiers to use sex industries: true meanings and meaningless

The remark by Mr. Toru Hashimoto, the Mayor of Osaka, at the American soldiers station in Okinawa caused discussion.


Mr. Hashimoto said that wartime brothels had a necessary role in providing relief for soldiers. And he also recommended that American soldiers make more use of the local adult entertainment industries.
It is not surprising that his comments ignited vast criticism.

This article of the NYT referred the remarks of Mr. Hashimoto partially. Actually, Mr. Hashimoto made a lot of comments with Twitter. He also answered to the interviewer of Mainichi Shinbun. He confirmed that the summary of this interview (in Japanese) was relatively precise.

According to them, he made some important comments not introduced widely. First, he admitted Japan should be responsible for the victims of WW II. Second, he said wartime brothels should not be acceptable in modern age. Third, it is not clear that usage of adult entertainment industries will reduce sex crimes, said he. Of course, he has never justified the coercion for working as a prostitute.

I understand his core opinion is summarized into the two passages; Wartime brothels were widely used in past wartime in most countries. And now, the application of legal adult entertainment industries in Japan may be acceptable even among the US army.

About the first point of view, I have little knowledge. But I imagine it is true. Some researchers admitted the existence of wartime brothels in several countries. For example, Mr. Ikuhiko Hata, a Japanese historian, said that the wartime brothels had a role to prevent soldiers from sex crimes against local citizens.

The second issue is more complicated.
There is little doubt that the sex industry has a certain role in some countries. Recently, some women are willing to work at an adult entertainment industries.
However, forced working may exist to be problematic, especially in younger age. They should be distinguished each other. Some associations for women’s right blamed strongly Mr. Hashimoto. But whether they truly consider the right and opinion of women working at those facilities is doubtful. On the other hand, it is possible that coercive situation occurs for some reasons. There are lots of factors; Yakuza (Japanese mafia), illegal drugs, poverty, abusive parents, and so on. What will happen if soldiers in American army come into an adult entertainment industry? Is it a risk or not? It is hard to answer. The commander prohibits soldiers from entering those industries, maybe to avoid causing any trouble.

By the way, is it true that utilization of sex industries reduce sex crime? As far as I know it is unclear yet. The other day I heard a research about this. After opening of pornography, sex related offensive cases were decreased. But cases reduced were relatively light crimes such as peeping, and rapes were not prevented. In short, the result was that citizens got tolerant to light crimes.
I guess, a few psychopathic people will continue causing crimes even if sex industries were opened. Whether accidental cases are reduced or not is unclear. Perhaps, reported cases will be decreased.

After all, I appreciate the remark of Mr. Hashimoto to some extent.
However, his behavior is meaningless. There is no expectation for the US army to change their policy based on his remark. They cannot officially admit that soldiers need sex industries. As a politician, Mr. Hashimoto made a comment not useful to change the world, only embarrassing others. It is his fault, I think.


(*sequel)

Monday, May 13, 2013

What is politics?

It is an essential question.

My answer is simple; politics is making a decision for the tradeoff between now and the future.

To begin with, why should politicians exist? Today, we can present our own opinion quite easily with internet. Theoretically, direct democracy like Poleis in the ancient Greek era can be realized with modern technology. We can determine all things around our lives with decision by majority.

However, this political state will no longer maintain. The reason is human bias.
We tend to attach greater importance to immediate pleasure than fruit in future. We cannot ignore our own interests. In individual decision, we can often be patient. But in total, human are egoistic. Therefore the decision of the majority is likely to be short-sighted. It is so called as populism.

To elect a politician by voting is to concentrate our thought into one person. He has enough time to learn about the complicated issues. He will be supervised by citizens, not to be concerned about his own interest too much. And his decision may be more radical than the total will of the people.

A politician must have a tough time, occasionally being hated by the citizens. Cost cutting is hardly achieved under the influence of populism. In the contrast, complete satisfaction of all citizens sometimes means to force the next generations in the future to pay sacrifice.

There is always a tradeoff between the present prosperity and happiness in the future. I think making a balance of this dilemma is the ultimate work performed by politicians.

Unfortunately, most politicians set their purposes as to being politicians. Before the next election, they cannot make any decision to sacrifice citizens before them.

In Japan some politician decided to raise taxes up. After all they lost a lot of seats in the next election without exception. Raising tax might be inevitable to maintain the government. Nonetheless, citizens exiled the policy makers with voting. It is a great dilemma of modern democracy.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Ms. Virgin Atlantic in Air Asia

Mr. Richard Branson, the chairperson of The Virgin Atlantic airline served as a flight attendant wearing female dress.


He lost a bet against Mr. Tony Fernandes, the CEO of Air Asia, about the winner of F1 racing 2 years ago. He carried out this performance as the penalty of their gambling.

He seems to be high-spirited as if he had a habit of transvestism. At least his funny behavior was successful to advertise the name of Virgin Atlantic.

As to bet for dressing as a woman, I remember an episode in The Romance of the Three Kingdoms.
Sima-Yi, one of the generals of Cao Wei, was prepared for invasion of Shu at a borderline. His boss was doubtful that Shu would overrun the border and he was not concerned about the defense.  Therefore Sima-Yi invited his boss to bet whether the army of Shu would come. Sima-Yi said that if they did not come he would dress as a woman. The boss laughed at him. The result was victorious of Sima-Yi. He responded quickly to the invading army of Shu and overcame it. The boss was disappointed by his own lack of insight.
Sima-Yi is my favorite person in the Three Kingdoms era.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

DSM-5: New mental disorders are approaching

The American Psychiatric Association will publish DSM-5, a new criterion of mental disorders, on May 2013.

DSM-5: The Future of Psychiatric Diagnosis

Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is one of the most frequently used textbooks by mental health practitioners. Formerly, psychiatric diagnosis was criticized for its low reliability. Each psychiatrist tended to call the mental disorder's name differed from one another. With DSM, we can diagnose the patients precisely, at least the same as other psychiatrists do. In the US, medical insurance companies request for the psychiatrist to describe the diagnosis with DSM to compensate the medical cost. Now being familiar with DSM is essential for every psychiatrists.

DSM fourth edition (DSM-IV) was published in 1994 and minimally revised in 2000. APA was continuing to collect the data to revise DSM-IV into DSM-5 in the last decade. We, psychiatrists are also involved in it. Some academic associations presented unique criteria. Enormous discussion has performed. At last, we will see the moment of reborn of DSM.

Actually, DSM is not an invincible tool for the diagnosis. It resembles a recipe book. We can cook well with a good written recipe book. However, recipe book hardly describes the real taste. We do not know the real forms and causes of almost all mental disorders. DSM eases us to image them, but cannot help us to understand the core of any mental disorders.

Nonetheless, revision of DSM will change our clinical practice in psychiatry. If standard of a certain diagnosis is relaxed, the number of the patients with this diagnosis will be increased dramatically. Of course it does not mean that the some persons really get ill. However, this may influence on society, perhaps in political or financial context.

Some criticize APA that DSM is merely a business tool. Actually, all psychiatrists in the US must possess DSM textbook. Therefore, APA will gain a large amount of interests from a revision of  DSM. It resembles some computer software frequently updated.

We soon have to learn about DSM-5. It is a tough and confusing work, such as the introduction of Windows 8.

I expect DSM-5 will be an excellent tool for diagnosis, for the patients now suffering from mental disorders.


(*sequel)

Friday, May 10, 2013

The best way to multi tasks

We sometimes have to accomplish several tasks at the same time. Some clients ask favors of you one after another. You may deal with an accidental issue in the middle of a routine work.
Multi task dealing is one of essential skill for a business person. It is a great advantage if you can perform a different task accompanied with another one. Also the modern CPU of computers has multi core and is equipped with hyper threading.

I can perform multi tasks well. I always perform several works in the regions of clinical practice, research, and education. Each task are not so tough, so I can deal with all of them. Ability of mine is not extraordinary. I think that everyone can learn multi task performing.

What is the most important matter to perform multi tasks?

“Begin on the task whose deadline is the slowest.” This is it.

You may say it is the opposite. Unless you began on the task whose deadline is almost here, you would fail to catch the deadline, aren’t you?
No, it is nonsense.

If you begin on an urgent task, you will complete it just in time. I guess you have some experience. No extra time would be left. This is commonly known as Parkinson’s law.

Then, a new urgent task occurs soon after completion of the former task. You will begin on it. You will make great efforts to get it in time. And then, it is repeated. The result is that the task not urgent but more important will never end.

On the contrast, if you begin on the task not so urgent, what will happen? In the beginning, you may be relieved because the deadline is far after. But, other tasks remain untouched. You will get anxious gradually. If you do not complete the task before you, you are not able to even begin with another task which is urgent.

Yes, the concept of this method is to set the deadline of not urgent task forcibly. When the deadline is approaching, your concentration will be maximized, as you know.

This is the best way for multi task players.

Of course, this method is applicable only to not so complicated task. To complete a great task that costs several months or more, you should make up a rational plan.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Reform of Mental health act in Japan


The Japanese government introduced a bill for reforming of Mental Health and Welfare Act into Parliament on April 19, 2013.

Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare: The bills introduced into 183rd Parliament (in Japanese)

A topic on this reform is guardianship. Mental Health and Welfare Act regulates guardianship for patients with mental disorders. When a patient was sent to a mental hospital involuntarily, the spouse or other one of family members will be elected as a guardian for the patient. A psychiatrist with designated physician license is able to force the patient who needs to be protected to be hospitalized if the guardian agrees with the hospitalization. This scheme is called “admission for medical care and protection”. This form of hospitalization is adapted for one-third of all inpatients with mental disorders.

Guardians have some legal obligations. Historically, they were responsible for making the patient go to the hospital regularly and avoiding the patient from harming self or others. Even now, they have to accept the patient when discharged from the mental hospital. These obligations burdened the family member who had elected as a guardian. Some associations of family members of the patients with mental disorders were being opposed to this scheme of guardianship.

Therefore, Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare tried to reform the mental health law.

According to the bill, Regulation of guardianship no more exist. The new “admission for medical care and protection” is approved when one of the family members, if not a guardian, agreed with the opinion of a licensed psychiatrist.

This reform includes some controversy.
What happens if another person of the family members were opposed to the involuntary hospitalization? Formerly, other family members than the guardian had no right to be opposed to the decision of involuntary hospitalization. For a guardian, the power of supporting involuntary hospitalization coincided with the responsibility for protecting. The new bill equips a regulation about a request for discharge by some family members. Mental health practitioners would experience hard time when there is a quarrel among family members.

From the beginning, I think that the scheme of admission for medical care and protection is problematic. It is strange that an agreement of a family member, who are not an expert of psychiatry or law, is mandatory for forced hospitalization. This scheme originated in traditional Japanese culture. However, the relationship of the family is not so close nowadays in Japan. We have to reconsider the regulation about involuntary hospitalization.

Nonetheless, too radical reform will be confusing for the patients. I understand this reform as only a transitional measure.


(*sequel)


Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Baggage theft cases in Alitalia

Baggage stolen cases happened in the airplanes. It is surprising that the thieves were the crews.

CNN: Italian police arrest dozens over Alitalia baggage theft

Dozens of baggage handlers working for Alitalia, an Italian airline, were arrested for the theft.
It is a dreadful matter. We are not able to protect our baggages from picking while they are checked in the transportation service. Primarily, workers at the airline company are responsible for the safety of the baggages. However, they were not security police, but thieves!

According to Agence France-Presse, an Alitalia source said that they were also victims. I think most people may get angered to hear the words. Passengers cannot distinguish vicious workers from innocent ones in the same department. In Japan there is an expression such as “Nusutto Takedakeshii!” (You, shameless thief!).

Global Post: Italy police bust baggage thieves at Alitalia

However, it is a little difficult problem to determine the range a company is responsible for the crime an employee committed. In this case, Alitalia could not avoid occurring the crime with abuse of the position as baggage keepers. Therefore, Alitalia has responsibility to compensate for the loss of the victims, I think. On the other hand, it is not always rational that a company should administrate all behaviors of the employees. If an employee committed a theft at another store than the airport, the employer would fire him simply.

In Japan, the relationship between companies and the employees is very strong. When an employee belongs to a famous company commit a crime, the company itself tends to be blamed violently. It is often occurring that the chancellor makes an apology in public after a student of the university committed a crime. I think this is an excessive compliance. Companies, universities, or other organizations should be responsible for their own field that they should control.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

SoftBank vs. DishNetwork

Mobile phone market in the US is being shaken. Dish Network declared to buy up Sprint Nextel, competing against SoftBank.

Sprint Nextel is the third largest company of mobile phone in the US, but was suffering from a shortage of capital. SoftBank presented the purchase plan to Sprint in Oct. 2012. Sprint side agreed to make a contract with SoftBank. It seems to be a friendly takeover.

Dish Network is a company dealing with satellite broadcasting. Entry to mobile telecommunication to offer movies to mobile phone users seems to be a good business model.
Sprint has to pay the penalty fee for SoftBank if the purchase is cancelled, as I mentioned before. Of course Dish is ready for compensating the loss for Sprint.

Dish continues sparring with SoftBank over competing Sprint bids

Mr. Masayoshi Son, the president of SoftBank, performed a presentation about the advantage of Softbank in the offering of buy up. He claimed about his opinion with his own voice.

(Presentation movie about the transaction with Sprint in the Web site of SoftBank)

In contrast, Dish rebutted SoftBank. After all, both SoftBank and Dish said that the opposite side did not make an apple to apple comparison.

Dish rebuts SoftBank’s claims over Sprint bid

At the moment, SoftBank seems to have no intention to raise up the amount of value for Sprint. For SoftBank it would be the worst scenario to be concerned with a battle of cat-and-mouse game with Dish. It is an option for SoftBank to retreat with fruits, up to $1 billion, including the penalty fee and convertible bonds.

I do not know which will be the winner. It is possible that the US government dislikes a foreign company controlling upon the mobile telecommunication. If so, SoftBank will face hard time.


(*sequel)


Monday, May 6, 2013

Suicide in the USA

In the USA, the suicide rate is sharply increasing, according to the New York Times (NYT).

The New York Times: Suicide Rates Rise Sharply in U.S.

The NYT seems to be cautious to decide the reason of rising suicide. Indeed, to evaluate suicides as phenomena is quite difficult. Many factors can influence to suicide. Moreover, discussion about suicide is sometimes deemed to be impolite.
In Japan, it very often occurs that the family members want not to announce the fact of suicide. Doctor in charge perhaps forges the cause of death in the death certificate. Also in the US, the precise number of suicides may be unknown.

It is well known that financial crises can increase the suicide rate. In Japan, after 1999 the suicide rate was jumping up to over 30,000 in a year, as I wrote. The rate of suicide is about three times that of the US. It is similar to the US that suicides of only men were increased.

How about the method of suicide?
NYT hypothesizes that availability of opioid drugs is related to the increased rate of suicide. I cannot judge this opinion for lack of knowledge. Actually, drug misuse is a serious problem, causing damage to human brain to destroy one's life. However, drugs are not a cause of suicide, but a means in general. Whether regulation of dangerous drugs will reduce the suicide rate is unclear. Gunshot is the most common means of suicide in the US.
On the other hand, hanging is most common in Japan. Recently, CO2 toxication with briquette is growing. Most drugs prescribed by a doctor are not so fatal if overdosed.

If baby boomers in the US is wandering their future, it is very suggestive, for the current situation in Japan is mirroring this. Middle aged men in Japan are worried about the future. Some of people with younger ages has no expectation and are trying to change their lifestyle. Perhaps, world changing is to be happening.

Interestingly, the suicide rate is decreased in this year in Japan. I do not know the true reason. Some researchers suggest the influence of economic recovery. But I am doubtful about it. Whether the policy of Abe administration, called “Abenomics” will success or not is yet unknown. Whether or not, if some people believe the happiness in the future to stop suicide, it is very glad.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Trial in India about patent of a new drug

On April 1, 2013 Supreme Court in India rejected the claim by Novartis about a new patent of anticancer drug.

The New York Times: Low-Cost Drugs in Poor Nations Get a Lift in Indian Court

Formerly, huge drug making companies such as Novartis tend to apply a new patent for a drug minimally changed from the original form to maintain their intellectual right after developing an innovative drug. Court in India denied their strategy.

This case is very suggestive.

To create a new drug is extremely difficult. First, researchers have to discover an effective chemical for human health. The opportunity of success is astronomically low. When a hopeful chemical is identified, they try to evaluate its effect on animal body. A lot of mice will be sacrificed. If this chemical has been proven to be safe and effective, clinical trials will be planned. As I have experienced to participate in clinical trials several times, they are quite complicated and tough. At last, an authority such as the Food and Drug Administration decides whether the drug should be approved or not. It is said that it costs millions of dollars and a few decades to establish a new drug.

Considering this circumstance, I understand that drug makers persist the patents. They must compensate the developmental cost. Unless they would lose the motivation to create a new drug.

On the other hand, it is true that the patent raises the market cost of a new drug. Some new drugs are so expensive that poor patients hardly use ones continuously. There are few people to gain the benefit of new drugs.

Indian or other drug industries develop more cheaper drugs mimicking the original ones whose patent has been exhausted. They are called Generics. Generic drugs are now available all over the world to be beneficial for the patients not so rich. Also in Japan, many patients use generics. The government recommends generics to reduce cost of medicine.

This case of trial is similar to the conflict between Apple and Samsung. Whether Samsung invaded the patent of Apple or not is controversial even now. Some of US Court acknowledged the infringement of Samsung. But The Korean Court stood by Samsung. This kind of trial cannot be completely free from national interest I guess. Even if the judges act extremely as neutral, they are bound by the national cultural thought.

Intellectual property is quite a difficult problem. In Japan, discussion is rising around TPP. We must be careful, and keep balanced thought between our own benefit and the whole happiness of us.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Hamamatsu Matsuri, a kite fighting

Today, I visited Hamamatsu, to see Hamamatsu Matsuri.


Hamamatsu Matsuri official website (perhaps limited time offer)

Hamamatsu Matsuri is one of the famous festivals in Japan as Kite Fight event.
Kite at Hamamatsu has originally a meaning of celebration for a new child. Additionally, in Hamamatsu Matsuri, each member flys a huge kite and tries to cut the strings of others kites.


There are a lot of stands providing foods and drinks in a shopping mall near to Hamamatsu station.



Near to the grounds, there is a pond.


The kites to be flown are so huge.


Several people were pulling the strings together to stabilize the kite.


It is very fine today.
Many kites are floating in the blue sky.


 

A lost kite was fallen. It seemed a little lonely.


The bus station was crowded.


I enjoyed the festival. The participants were so brave.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Constitution Memorial Day

Today is Constitution Memorial Day in Japan. Constitution of Japan was enforced on May 3, 1947. By the way it was on Nov. 3, 1946 that Constitution of Japan was promulgated. Nov. 3 is also a national holiday as Culture Day.

In every year, there is a lot of discussion about the Constitution on spring in Japan. Some parties present their policy about the Constitution.

In Japan, ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) is willing to revise the Constitution, even if the LDP is relatively conservative. Opinion of Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) is vague. Some of representative politicians belong to DPJ claim the necessity of revision of the constitution. However, DPJ seems to hesitate to claim strongly for the revision of the Constitution, not to harmonize to LDP. Japan Restoration Party agrees the revision.
Traditionally, Social Democratic Party and Japanese Communist Party were clearly opposed to the revision of the Constitution. But members of them are decreasing nowadays. Moreover, the LDP is quite dominant in the diet because of the number of seats and approval rating now. So it is possible that revision of the Constitution is realized.

Japan has never revised the Constitution yet after the promulgation. It is very rare in the international point of view. It is said that one of the reasons is that it is too difficult to revise the Constitution. To revise the Constitution, more than two-third of the members in both upper house and lower house must agree with it. Moreover, national voting is essential. Some say it is an intrigue of GHQ not to change the antiwar policy of Japan.

However, the necessary condition of the revision of the constitution is not so severe in Japan, compared to other countries. In Germany, more than two-third of the members in both Federal Diet and Federal Council must agree the revision. Nonetheless, the constitution was revised over 50 times after WW II in Germany.

Actually, Japan has not revised the constitution itself, but the Japan government changed the interpretation of the constitution repeatedly. For example, Japan established National Police Reverse (past form of the Self Defense Force) in 1950. Obviously, article 9 in the Constitution of Japan prohibits organizing any army. However, National Police Reverse was deemed to be an exclusively self-defensive organization, not an army. Recently, Self Defense Force participated in the Iraq War. This kind of activity is also not against article 9, according to the Government.

Some media report public opinion about the revision of the Constitution. In the questionnaire performed by NHK, 42% of respondents think the revision is necessary, 16% think not necessary. According to Nikkei Shinbun, 56% of respondents claim the necessity of the revision of the Constitution, 28% claim keeping. On the other hand, Asahi Shinbun emphasizes the conservativeness in citizens against the revision. According to its questionnaire, 54% of the respondents are opposed relaxing the condition of the revision of the Constitution.
To be honest, I hardly trust the result of the questionnaire. Questionnaire surveys may be inductive in many cases. The Nikkei is relatively close to LDP. Asahi is against the LDP. To perform a questionnaire survey neutrally is very difficult technically, from my experience.

My opinion is that we should revise the Constitution for our own responsibility. However I do not think that the revision will change Japan so dramatically. In the modern world, revision of laws has no power to change the world, especially in Japan.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Project management

Nowadays, project management is an essential skill for a business person. Younger age, all you have to do is to obey an order of your boss. Technical skill and knowledge are your advantage to perform a particular work. But, getting older, being promoted, you should manage not only work but also human. Therefore all business persons who belong to an organization should learn about it.

However, in Japan there is little opportunity to learn systemically about project management. Many people teach themselves this kind of skills.
Especially, IT engineers tend not to be able to manage their colleagues well. Many engineers consider that they can be successful when they can write code well. However, a lot of middle aged engineers are suffering from maladjustment with work. It does not due to their ability of IT skills. Simply, they cannot work well as an administrator.

To avoid this problem, several questions about project management are covered in Information Technology Engineer Examinations performed by Information-technology Promotion Agency, Japan.

Actually, physicians are not familiar to project management. A physician is an ultimate practitioner to save the life of the patient in front of him. Patients are various one another. Before a patient, what he must do is not different, whether he is the boss or a resident. He is responsible for his patient's life, so he will not obey the order of his boss when he thinks it is not for the patient.

In Japanese legislation, the director of a hospital must be a physician. However, it is not said that all experienced physicians who are well talented about medical skills can role an act as a top manager. So, not a few hospitals face a financial crisis even if the hospital is trusted by citizens.

The situation is similar in professors of medical schools. They are excellent researchers. But their administrative skills are quite various.

I will write some principles about project management below. If you do not meet any of them in your current task, I recommend you reconsider the strategy or at least tactically.

(1) The goal of the project is quite concrete. Anyone can judge whether the project has accomplished or not yet.

(2) The members of the project team are chosen along with the policy. No one is almighty. To utilize the each advantage of the members strengthen the team itself.

(3) The team members must share the process of the project. When every member knows the impact of his own contribution to the project, motivation of members will maintain. If not, some will lose his way.

(4) The direction must be clear. If each direction is vague, some members can translate it based on his particular thought. This results in the collapse of team work. Perhaps, some creative works may be born after a mistake. However it is no good as a project management.

(5) The administrator must not change the policy easily. If he must do, he should explain the necessity of altering to all members. Sharing the goal again is a complicated task. But it is inevitable.

Recently, I had an experience of the contrary of all of them above. It was a really tough time for me.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Complications around the comment of Mr. Inose about Olympic

A comment of Mr. Naoki Inose, the governor of Tokyo, caused a lot of fuss.

In an interview in New York, he blamed Istanbul, one of competitors against Tokyo for the 2020 Olympics, appealing Tokyo's advantages, according to The New York Times (NYT).


His comment, “Islamic countries, the only thing they share in common is Allah and they are fighting with each other, and they have classes” was deemed to be problematic. International Olympic Committee Code of Ethics prohibits bidders from criticizing on rival cities.

Mr. Inose claimed that this article of NYT did not report his own opinion precisely on his Facebook Page. He said he liked Istanbul privately and he had no intention to criticize other competitors.
Over 200 comments are posted to this entry. As far as I understand, opinions of the replies are various. Some blame NYT. Others criticize the carelessness of Mr. Inose. There are also comments emphasizing international friendship more than hosting Olympic.

Tokyo 2020 bid claimed that it was doubtful whether Mr. Inose's speech had been translated exactly.


Then, NYT stood by the article soon after the announcement of the comment of Mr. Inose. According to NYT, reporters were familiar with Japanese language, and Mr. Inose was also accompanied with a translator.


Tokyo side might feel disadvantageous. Mr. Inose publicly apologized about his comment at Apr. 30, 2013. His whole comment was published at his official website both in Japanese and English.


According to Sankei News, He told that he could not avoid making comment including a comparison against other cities to emphasize the advantages of Tokyo.

Actually, I hardly know about the character of Mr. Inose. He was working as a deputy governor of Tokyo under the control of Mr. Shintaro Ishihara. Mr. Ishihara, past governor and now the president of Japan Restoration Party, is a very aggressive person.

I think what Mr. Inose said exactly is not so important. As he said, negative campaigns are more or less inevitable in any voting. How to deflect emotion of voters is always decisive for the victory. I think that Mr. Inose's decision of early apologizing will be successful.