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I sent this exchange off yesterday with a handwritten note to the Kyoto City Government Department of Tourism and the Kyoto Tourist Association, advising them to engage in some Administrative Guidance. At about half of the 72 airports, actual use was less than 50 percent of what was forecast. He decides to quieten them down by handing around a bucket of fried chicken. I declined to answer. If that is the case, we would do spot checks to make sure that those policies are actually being followed.

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楽天 トラベル 搭乗 証明 書 jal

  楽天 トラベル 搭乗 証明 書 jal

  楽天 トラベル 搭乗 証明 書 jal  

楽天 トラベル 搭乗 証明 書 jal.

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楽天 トラベル 搭乗 証明 書 jal

I am not a gaijin, or a gaikokujin, and I will not be associated with any work which imports and uses that binary rubric to view the world. I am a Japanese. Full stop. Calling me a foreigner is inaccurate. With me so far? I am deeply disappointed….. Omedetoh, Sorry such a late reply, but Xmas or something.

All the best for Tiger,. Not to mention their lousy treatment of handicapped guests embezzling GOJ subsidies earmarked for barrier-free facilities. Now for an update. Over the past couple of days, a Debito. We aim to please. Summary about Toyoko-Inn hotels: 1 They will refuse foreigners if the foreigner does not show some kind of ID.

I had exactly the same experience with this hotel chain. In my case my wife went first and explained the situation to me by phone. I had her convey that I refuse to stay at the hotel on the grounds of discrimination. Needless to say I wont be going to that chain again.

The experience puts me off traveling in Japan. At that time I decided to discontinue the conversation before it became even weirder than it already was. Because that hotel chain is quite cheap and they are all over Japan.

Their webpage and all their information is multilingual Japanese, English, Korean, Chinese. However, I believe equal treatment matters more to foreigners than any non-Japanese language information. I personally will not be staying at Toyoko-Inn hotels again as long as they have such a policy in place. Suddenly they paid more attention and promised my wife that we would get a reply from the hotel management regarding that matter.

But if we do get anything in writing that might be of interest to others I will post it here. One final thing about Toyoko-Inn: If you want to make reservation online, you need to tell them your date of birth and your citizenship.

Even Japanese guests need to provide this information! And the logic behind their selection is incomprehensible. You can check it out yourself. First I am not saying this never happens, because obviously it does not one of the dudes that says if it does not happen to me it does not happen.

It really sucks. I have used Toyoko Inns for over 5 years now for business and have never had this happen to me. I am usually travelling alone and on business. The reason I bring this up could there be some other type of profiling going on? I am not married to a Japanese woman and usually show up alone.

I complete the check in process in Japanese and write my name in katakana and address in my feeble nihongo. The places are cheap, clean, and have good internet connectivity and even a little breakfast in the morning. I think the best deal in Tokyo is the Toyoko at Shinagawa if you can get in. It sucks this is happening…. I hope the wives are furious!

Shark do you mind saying where this happened? And if you get a reply I would love to see it. I use this chain all the time. KFC aka Kentucky Fried Chicken has been accused of racism, according to various media sources, thanks to a recent advertisement it ran in Australia. Here it is :. The Australian arm of the fast-food chain KFC has been accused of racial insensitivity over a television commercial showing an outnumbered white cricket fan handing out pieces of fried chicken to appease a dancing, drumming and singing group of black West Indian supporters.

Although intended only for an Antipodean audience, the clip has quickly found its way around the world on the internet, prompting stinging criticism in the US where fried chicken remains closely associated with age-old racist stereotypes about black people in the once segregated south.

KFC has the answer. The flare-up comes three months after another racial controversy between Australia and the US in which the American singer Harry Connick Jr, appearing as a judge on an Australian television talent show, reacted strongly to a skit in which a group of singers appeared with blacked up faces to emulate the Jackson Five. The Australian arm of the fast food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken has had to withdraw an advertisement after accusations of racial insensitivity.

It showed a white cricket fan trying to pacify a group of rowdy West Indian fans by handing around fried chicken. When the advertisement reached America via the internet there were complaints. It was accused of reinforcing a derogatory racial stereotype linking black people in the American deep south with a love of fried food.

The advertisement from Kentucky Fried Chicken features a white cricket fan dressed in the green and gold of the Australian team surrounded by a group of West Indian supporters, who are dancing and singing to a calypso beat.

He decides to quieten them down by handing around a bucket of fried chicken. Picked up by the American media, the advertisement immediately stirred controversy, because it was alleged to have perpetuated the racial stereotype that black people eat a lot of fried chicken.

It is the second time in three months that something broadcast in Australia has caused a racial stir in America. The last flare-up was over an entertainment show on the Australian network Channel Nine in which a group of singers appeared with blacked-up faces to impersonate the Jackson Five.

We get KFC Australia doing a hasty retreat from its controversial commercial days after it goes viral on YouTube, and pulling it pretty quickly. Now contrast with the ad campaign by another American-origin fast-food multinational, McDonalds. More on what I found wrong with that ad campaign here. This argument was also made in comments to this blog as well. Why the difference? So I bring it up for discussion here on Debito.

What do readers think? Now back to business. While doing research over the new year, I got quite a shock when I was doing some followup on a case of exclusionary practices. I reported on Debito. A brief write up, with links to sources, follows. At the very bottom are screen captures of the FTIA website evidencing the exclusionary practices. Place : Fukushima Prefecture 35 hotels, now hotels [1]. The FTIA said they advised them of the unlawfulness of this practice, and would be clarifying their website questions in future.

It would appear that the prefectural tourist agency officially offering the option to refuse NJ lodgers enables businesses to refuse.

Here are some evidentiary screen captures from the FTIA website as of January 3, click on image to expand in your browser First, the site with search terms that indicate that hotels refuse NJ clients:.

Screen capture with different search terms, indicating hotels of the total allow in NJ:. Hi all. For a flat rate of Yen approx. Maximum weight is 20 kg!! There are no limits on distance, and anything within the framework of the law can be enclosed. Each envelope has a detachable bar code label, that the sender keeps, and another that the delivery man takes off upon delivery.

The flat rate envelope can be deposited in mail boxes, and at P. Contrary to 1st class mail, these envelopes are transported by air, which makes them real fast! The flat rate envelopes cannot be insured, but my buyers prefer it over registered 1st class mail, just because the envelopes are sturdy, and delivery is a day or two faster!

As I deposited the items at a P. Next day, I found a form letter in my P. Box, informing me that both items had been sent surface and would thus be delayed by a day or two. I went to see the postmaster to tell him, that this was totally useless, as — except for imminent, clear and present danger — Japan Post employees are not authorized to open and check the mail for contents.

My conclusion — potential and active terrorists in Japan can be trusted in this country. Letting him take the keyboard for today. Instead the issue is being given superficial treatment:. If I may be facetious for just a minute, the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau should either fix the situation or cut the clerks out of the loop and pocket the cash for itself by establishing a legitimate residency permit market.

In recent years, a number of administrative scriveners have helped foreigners obtain residency permits illegally, taking advantage of the fact that the immigration control law stipulates no punitive measures for violators. Administrative scriveners were reportedly involved in at least 10 cases of fraudulent marriage and illegal employment exposed by the Metropolitan Police Department since Some even placed ads in free newspapers for foreigners to attract customers, the MPD said.

The MPD plans to provide information on nine other cases to the relevant local governments if those cases are also judged as heinous. The MPD arrested a year-old South Korean man in May last year on suspicion of brokering a fake marriage between a year-old South Korean woman and a year-old Japanese man. The Korean man told police he asked an administrative scrivener in the Tokyo metropolitan area to file an application for a residency permit that the woman needed in order to get married, a senior MPD officer said.

During police interrogations, the Japanese man and Korean woman reportedly said the scrivener filed the application on their behalf despite knowing their marriage was fake. Given their confessions, the MPD investigated whether it could bring a criminal charge against the scrivener in question. Because the immigration control law has no punitive provisions regarding false marriage applications, the MPD examined whether the scrivener could be accused of abetting a fake marriage, or of helping a suspect to evade capture.

The scrivener voluntarily submitted to questioning but denied any wrongdoing, saying he did not know it was a fake marriage. The MPD had no alternative but to give up bringing criminal charges against the scrivener. In July, the MPD arrested six Japanese and Chinese brokers in connection with a case in which a Chinese farmer illegally obtained a residency permit by posing as an interpreter. Police investigations discovered forged employment contracts at the office of an administrative scrivener who is different from the one who prepared the application for the residency permit.

The MPD has confirmed that scriveners were involved in 10 falsification cases since The scriveners accepted application requests from brokers and from applicants themselves. The MPD suspects that such advertising facilitates illegal employment and fake marriages. For this reason, the MPD considers it necessary to deal harshly even with cases in which criminal charges cannot be filed, by calling for the authorities concerned to take punitive action.

Together with the metropolitan government and the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau, the MPD established a liaison council to discuss countermeasures against administrative scriveners involved in illegal immigration cases. Through the council, the MPD provides relevant information for the metropolitan government and bolsters its surveillance of illegal activities by scriveners.

A senior member of the Tokyo association of administrative scriveners said his organization would strictly deal with any scriveners found to have committed illegal acts. Its parent organization, the Japan federation of administrative scriveners associations, is making its own efforts to tackle the issue.

Big news across Japan these past couple of days has been how the Winter Bonus has been slashed between 10 to 15 percent for bureaucrats:. Japan Times Friday, Dec. This has long been standard practice in Japan, and every June and December the postwar Japanese economy suddenly becomes awash in cash, as families suddenly get a glurt of around man en in their accounts.

The problem is that this practice is a bellwether: other industries see this as an excuse to cut their own salaries. My university which is private-sector, but they directly cited the Bonus cuts to the national bureaucrats kokka koumuin as justification cut all of our Bonuses this year and will continue to do so in perpetuity.

As in: they cut our bonus multiple from 4. I might add that this is on top of the general trend: my total annual salary has dropped more than man between and I searched for a source for this, but came up short.

Double whammy. And banks are wondering why more people are defaulting on their loans these days? They should stop being greedy and start lowering their premiums too to match the fact that people in general are being paid less.

Lose the Bonus System. It is increasingly becoming a way to deprive workers of a third of their annual salary at corporate whim. The weighted average bonus is seen falling This is the sharpest drop since the survey was first conducted in The Nikkei tabulated the bonus payment plans of companies. The bonus cutback signals that corporations are still trying to curb personnel costs due to uncertainties over future economic trends, despite some earnings improvement from growth in emerging markets.

Bonuses are expected to fall Food producers plan to raise bonuses by 0. Nonmanufacturers plan to reduce bonuses by 5. The big losers are of course the commodities in these exchanges — people, i. A senior immigration officer arrested on suspicion of accepting bribes is believed to have told his briber to set up an office in Kawasaki as a front. Arrested on suspicion of accepting bribes in return for favors in the screening of residence permits for female bar workers was Masashi Ogura, 54, a chief screening officer at the Narita Airport District Immigration Office.

Also arrested on suspicion of bribery was Shingo Ito, 46, the president of a Shibuya company that accommodates overseas entertainers. Ogura is accused of accepting a total of about 6 million yen from Ito between July and November this year, while he served in positions at the Yokohama and Narita Airport district immigration offices.

Both parties have reportedly admitted to the allegations against them. He also introduced them to other restaurants, investigators said. Ogura reportedly used immigration computer terminals to look up the criminal history and immigration logs of the foreign women that Ito was planning to bring to Japan, and leaked the information. On Friday police searched about 20 locations in connection with their investigation into the alleged bribery, including the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau.

Investigators suspect that Ogura had Ito set up an office under the jurisdiction of the Yokohama District Immigration Office. They said Ito had earlier heard from a man involved in the same type of business that screening at the Yokohama immigration office was lenient, and approached Ogura, treating him to meals and a round of golf. The office had just one desk and no permanent manager. In the past, there were many cases in which women entered Japan on entertainment visas but ended up working as bar hostesses, which promoted immigration authorities to tighten screening of the places where they were working in According to the Justice Ministry, some , people entered Japan in as entertainers, but in the figure dropped to about , and in the number sunk to about 35, As a Sunday Tangent, let me express some long-overdue dissatisfaction with an organization that I gave a presentation to quite some time ago.

I did just that. I spent a number of days on my powerpoint see it here and my handout see it here , staying a couple of days in an Osaka dive hotel at my own expense working on it. I tried to make a seminar worthy of overseas educational credit which is what their Continuing Legal Education program is about, see FOOTNOTE below; I have emails indicating that they applied for it, and they had me fill out an application for it.

Thus I believe people would pay money for this class if it were offered overseas. But after I gave the presentation, I was paid not a sou. This was not made suitably clear to me in advance, and when I inquired about this situation last month, this is the exchange we had. I sent:. CLE Coordinator Mr. I apologize for the lateness of this letter, but I have been checking over my records recently, and I have yet to receive payment for costs transportation, accommodation or for speaking honorarium for this occasion.

Please contact me at your earliest convenience how much we have outstanding, and I will send you remittance details. Thanks very much for your attention. Arudou Debito in Sapporo debito debito.

From the very beginning we explained more than once that there was no honorarium, and you acknowledged that in a phone conversation with me when asking me about where to find inexpensive accommodations. I told you we are a volunteer organization, and you were our second speaker ever, and we had a negative balance in the accounts. More fool me, you might say, for accepting this invitation. But quite honestly, I have never given a speech in Japan where there was no remuneration whatsoever.

Moreover, lawyers are not a profession short of money. Quite a few people attended the presentation it was even video simulcast , and when I told a couple of them including Japan Times reporter Eric Johnston, who also attended I never got paid, they were quite shocked. Even they said that it would have not put them out to chip in something like yen as an entry fee.

Mr Allen even contacted me for research purposes on July 10, , and about a separate legal matter on July 12, which I will keep confidential , despite all this. I declined to answer. I guess the lesson to be learned here is that when the Japan Law Society invites you as a speaker and then says it will not pay you, take it seriously.

Professionals who want related professional assistance should be willing to compensate the provider for the service. Read on to see how the process works in particular against NJ, given their especially weak position both legally and languagewise. Glad people like Jake are out there exposing this sort of thing.

There was human trafficking going on. How did it work in the cases that you found? But essentially it works like this: You bring foreign women into the country, often under false pretences — that they would be working as hostesses, or working as waitresses in a restaurant.

You take away their passports. You put them in a room. And then you take them to the clubs where they have sexual relations with the customers. The women have no freedom of movement. And very often these traffickers would have agents within the countries where they were recruiting these women, often Eastern Europe, and contact the families of the women under various pretexts, to let them know that if they disobeyed, or did something in Japan or ran away, that their families back home would be menaced or killed.

DAVE DAVIES : You worked really hard to develop sources, and get enough on the record to write a story about this going on, and identify some of the people who were operating these human trafficking sex joints. What was the reaction among the police and other authorities when you exposed this?

We have to prosecute them under Japanese law. There is no provision in the law that allows us to keep them in the country while we do the investigation.

While your article is good, it is not something that is immediately actionable for us. I was able to get a copy of that report and put it on the front page of our newspaper as a scoop, while the Japanese Government was still getting ready to announce their plan of action.

And I think that had a very positive effect of making them put together a plan that was actually effective. I received a letter yesterday sokutatsu included below from the Kyoto Tourist Association, as well as a personal phone call yesterday afternoon from a Mr Sunagawa there, who told me the following:. The KTA had told me on Monday that they had no real authority kyouseiryoku here to advise a nonmember hotel, yet here they were taking this up and making the call. Find another exclusionary hotel like this?

Contact the local town or city tourist agency and include the letter from the KTA below, referring to it as a template for how some government agencies do get off their duff. Anyone want to do that for the exclusionary hotel in Wakkanai? Be my guest. NB : Before anyone begins to suspect that I think everything in Korea is gravy compared to Japan, let me say this: of course not.

Is all. If Japan really wants its Yokoso Japan! Instead of promoting exclusionary ones like the Fukushima Prefectural Tourist Information Association did a couple years back , for example. Some application to tourism in Japan and Japanese love hotels.

Of course, outside of Seoul and Busan there is often nothing available for the person searching in English, Chinese or Japanese languages spoken by almost all tourists visiting Korea.

The result: Tourists unwittingly find themselves paying twice as much for a place half as nice as the rooms hiding in plain sight. A Yonhap News piece in August looked at the ways motels have changed to attract not only clients looking for a few hours to get away, but people who want to relax in other ways.

Large televisions, computers, big beds, and bathtubs are standard in the newer rooms, and some of the more stylish ones offer jacuzzis, Nintendo and PlayStation consoles, motorcycles in the room, and even telescopes on upstairs verandas, all for between 50, won and , won a night. The kitch of multicolored mood lights and swanky interior is a fun, welcome change from drab apartment rooms or ordinary faded beige of older tourist hotels. Prospective travellers can make informed decisions about nicer motels by browsing the maps and photographs on an online motel directory, available in Korean.

There are several such directories — Hotel A Naver search for motels in Jeollanam-do turns up , and a Naver search for Gwangju retrieves The English-language KTO site devoted to accommodation, though, shows only six motels in Jeollanam-do, and zero for Gwangju.

This means international tourists must rely on the few tourist hotels that have English, Chinese or Japanese-language webpages, the few places that will show up on an internet search. These places are often two or three times as expensive as a motel room, though, and often not as nice. Amenities are frequently old, dirty, and disappointing. Likewise foreign-language travel websites will advertise restaurants, bakeries, and bars on the premises, though those who have seen the hotels in person will find no such features.

The unsuspecting international tourist who assumes there will be staff members on hand who can clearly communicate in a foreign language will likely find themselves disappointed. But the limited information on accommodation in Korea means would-be tourists must rely on the few options that have assembled something resembling an English-language page.

In spite of their ubiquity, there is a love-hate relationship among Koreans with motels and what they stand for. A newspaper in Gwangju recently complained that gaudy motels — topped with statues, domes, and flashy lights — are safety hazards and eye sores. And in May a writer for the English-language Gwangju News attracted the scorn of a local newspaper by writing about motels, the latter accusing the former of not understanding Korean culture and spreading misinformation among foreigners.

Foreign budget chains can succeed in Korea because there is simply no one else providing this basic service to foreigners. And in an age when Korea is trying to encourage foreign investment, scapegoating foreign companies is nothing short of xenophobic. But one option might be to invite some of the best motels into an umbrella program and create a foreign-language directory for the benefit of foreigners and international travellers.

It certainly behooves those already in Korea to take advantage of these motels. Brian Deutsch can be reached at deutsch.

Even if that means letter writing and cajoling people to cease a bad habit. Then I get mad. The only one left was a place in Fushimi that advertised online that they refused anyone who could not speak Japanese. I tried to vote with my feet and find alternative accommodation, but wound up having no choice, and made the reservation with the Fushimi place.

I did, however, the night before going down, find last-minute alternative accommodations at an unexclusionary hotel at more than double the price. Then I paid in cash by post to the Fushimi place the sizeable cancellation fee for the last-minute switch.

I also asked them to repeal this exclusionary rule, pointing out that it was an unlawful practice. I got a rude reply back. Without addressing me by name, I got a terse letter without any of the formal aisatsu or written tone that a customer-client relationship in this society would warrant.

And more. In other words, thanks for your money, but we can do as we please, so sod you. I sent this exchange off yesterday with a handwritten note to the Kyoto City Government Department of Tourism and the Kyoto Tourist Association, advising them to engage in some Administrative Guidance.

The latter organization has already told me that they are a private-sector institution, and that since this hotel is not one of their members they have no influence in this situation.

This is just one more reason why we need a law against racial discrimination. Here come the letters I sent, scanned, plus the reply. Click on any image to expand in your browser. Here are the letters warts and all. My letter to the Hotel, Kyou no Yado Fushimi :. Coming on the heels of news two months ago, of GOJ reports of record numbers of labor violations and NJ Trainee deaths from overwork , here we have Nj fighting back regarding overtime.

Unpaid or underpaid, that is. Bonne chance. Chinese trainees file complaint with labor bureau over yen per hour overtime. SHIMABARA, Nagasaki — Five Chinese trainees at an underwear manufacturer here have filed a complaint with the local labor bureau claiming they were forced to work overtime for just yen per hour.

We want to work in Japan for three years under reasonable conditions. The complaint, filed on Oct. The five women, aged 21 to 27, arrived in Japan between December and December under the Industrial Training and Technical Internship Program, administered by the governmental Japan International Training Cooperation Organization.

According to the complaint and other sources, the women each worked as many as overtime hours per month, and about 2, hours per year. The women claim that during busy periods they each worked from 8 a. They apparently signed a contract paying them a monthly salary based on the minimum wage, but that excluded provisions for overtime.

Working an average of hours per month at the minimum wage would equal a monthly paycheck of about , yen. However, the women claim that the company told them their pay was being directly deposited in their bank accounts and did not show them the payment details.

The company president also apparently checked the clock whenever one of the women went to the washroom and deducted that time from their breaks. The five women enrolled in the Nagasaki branch, and began collective bargaining with the company. That resulted in the return of their bankbooks, but apparently no progress was made on the wage issue.

In response to growing criticism from experts on the rising number of foreign worker exploitation cases, the central government amended the Immigration Control and Refugee Act in July.

The changes will go into effect in July , and the government continues to review the system. Numerous foreign vocational trainees are being forced to work under harsh conditions in Japan, such as illegally low wages and excessive overtime.

It was the first case in which the bereaved family of a vocational trainee is seeking work-related accident compensation. Revisions to the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Law that were passed into law in July call for stepped up protection of foreign trainees. However, organizations supporting foreign trainees are urging that the system be reviewed, claiming that excessive workloads are infringing on their personal rights.

In late January, a support group placed six Chinese women undergoing vocational training at a sewing factory in Yufu, Oita Prefecture, under protection after they complained of harsh working conditions. They had been forced to work until the predawn hours every day. After the factory operator learned that one of them complained about her working conditions to a relative living in Japan, the boss attempted to force her to go back to China.

However, she called the organization for help. The organization learned that the company paid each of them only 10, to 30, yen in overtime per month even though they performed about hours of overtime a month. Another former Chinese trainee who worked at a sewing factory in Amakusa, Kumamoto Prefecture, received only yen per hour for overtime, less then half the legal minimum wage.

The former trainee has filed a suit, demanding unpaid wages. One agency in China advertised on its Web site for trainees at Japanese companies under illegal working conditions, such as yen per hour of overtime in the first year of training. Before coming to Japan, many trainees are required to pay employment agencies a deposit and other fees, which are several times their annual income.

They typically obtain loans to pay the fees, and are supposed to use the wages they earn in Japan to repay their debts. The Justice Ministry has confirmed that a record companies and other organizations that accepted foreign trainees were involved in illegal practices last year.

About 60 percent of them involve violations of labor-related laws, including unpaid wages and overtime allowances. Nearly half, or 16 of them, died of brain and heart diseases that are often caused by long working hours.

Experts say that there is a high possibility that they died from overwork. With the amendment to the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Law, labor related laws, which had applied to foreign trainees from their second year, now apply to those in their first year of training.

As a result, it is now guaranteed that foreign trainees can sign proper employment contracts with their employers, just like Japanese workers. The government is poised to revise its regulations to inspect companies that accept foreign trainees at least once a month to see if their working conditions are legal as well as stiffen penalties for businesses involved in illegal labor practices and strictly examine the terms of contracts between foreign trainees and employment agencies in their home countries.

However, support groups question the effectiveness of these measures, pointing out that many of those in their second year of training are subjected to illegal labor practices. Lawyer Shoichi Ibusuki, who specializes in the issue of foreign trainees, underscores the need to discuss the pros and cons of fully accepting foreign workers rather than changing the working conditions for foreign trainees. Bit of a tangent but not really.

Any theories behind the difference? While controversy often crops up when race meets Photoshop, other recent snafus have caught advertisers overplaying, not whitewashing, diversity. Similarly, the official Toronto Fun Guide made headlines earlier this summer for its digitally diversified cover , which replaced a Latino father with a black man in a family picture, according to Allison Hanes of the Canadian paper National Post.

Unlike America, where Microsoft displayed the multicultural photo intact, Poland is ethnically homogenous , with almost 97 percent of its people identifying as Polish, according to the C. World Factbook. They are not the only ones to accuse the ad industry of a discriminatory culture, despite industry initiatives to promote diversity. Bests, Arudou Debito in Monbetsu, Japan. The author of it openly claims to engage in discriminatory practices in the US.

Worth a try. Feel free to email the HRC yourself, email address included. Arudou Debito in Sapporo, on the road this weekend may be slow in updating comments and blog. I am sure you will agree that this is a discriminatory practice, and hope you see it within your mandate to investigate and, if necessary, take action against this within the letter of the law. Thank you very much for your time and for reading this. If possible, please let me know what actions, if any, you take.

Here we have a case of how NJ can be hurt by careless Immigration decisions. The upcoming requirement for all NJ to be enrolled in health insurance shakai hoken , or else no visa granted, has been created without necessarily requiring negligent employers to pony up themselves.

As I wrote on Debito. A Japan Times article also substantiates this practice of employers fudging working hours to escape paying into NJ health insurance click here. And yet another Japan Times Zeit Gist column came out on this only yesterday — describing how half-baked the policy process and probable implementation has been! City seizes bank account to pay health insurance premiums General Union.

What was troubling about this case was that until now, the teacher had never had any problems with insurance. The problem started with his new employer, who would not enroll him onto Shakai Hoken. Even though the teacher was required to be at work from to every day, the company told him that he did not work thirty hours per week and therefore was ineligible for Shakai Hoken.

Now the story gets worse. Very simple. In Japan, all residents are required to be enrolled in health insurance. The union officer from FGU told the teacher to make sure that he cleared his bank account immediately after being paid each month.

This should have prevented the seizure of more money from the account. The teacher now still has to pay all his back payments, and for the first time that the union has ever seen, the teacher will not be allowed Kokumin Kenko Hoken coverage until all his back payments are made. A sign of things to come? Talk to your coworkers, join a union, and make sure that you get covered by Shakai Hoken. Although not stated explicitly, the implication is that those without such enrollment may be denied a visa renewal.

This will start happening from April 1st, and has a lot of foreigners concerned. The reason for this concern is that although all residents of Japan, including foreigners, are supposed to be enrolled in one of the health insurance programs, and indeed, in one of the overall social insurance programs, the reality is that many people are not.

Most such people are typically either self-employed, contractors, students, part-timers, unemployed people between jobs, or housewives i. We have been following the various media and chat boards about the topic, and the conversations seem to follow three main threads: that the Japanese insurance program is unwanted and unfair to foreigners, that it is discriminatory vis-a-vis Japanese non-payers, and that come April 1st, what can people do about it?

Most of us know the health insurance program through a collective social insurance package that most private companies are enrolled in, called Shakai Hoken.

This refers to health kenko hoken , pension kosei nenkin , unemployment koyo hoken , and nursing kaigo hoken — for those over 40 insurances. As many readers will know, there are four main social insurance programs of which health insurance is part: the Shakai Hoken program which most private companies are subscribed to, the Kokumin Hoken program, which is for people not in regular employment or who are self-employed, private insurance programs which are run by a few major Japanese conglomerates, and a government employee program.

For most of us, getting a visa renewal will mean being enrolled in either the Shakai Hoken or Kokumin Hoken programs. Come April 1st next year, what can you do if you are not currently a contributor to social insurance? We contacted the Immigration Bureau to ask this question, and from what we can tell, they themselves have not yet settled on a policy of how to handle non-compliant people.

They did say that they will only be checking for health insurance certificates, not pension and other insurances. So we suppose that the simplest answer is to go get yourself enrolled now in the Kokumin Kenko Hoken program. However, since there are a number of exemption categories for kenko hoken working in a company of less than 5 people, for example , we suppose it might be possible to present yourself as being an exempt person, with, we think, some chance of being able to convince the interviewing officer that your visa should be renewed.

So how is it that people have been allowed to get away with not paying in health and other social welfare taxes until now? This duality of positioning caused the Social Insurance Agency SIA to be run differently, and unlike the Tax Agency, has for many decades decided for itself whether to make people pay or not.

As we all know, this has changed over the last 5 years, as it came to light that the SIA not only let people off having to pay, but also themselves lost 50MM or so contributor records.

It seems that the new government position is that the SIA once it has been reorganized into a new agency next year, will function more like the National Tax Agency. Indeed, we think that within years, the two will be merged, and then the Japanese public will be faced with the reality that Social Insurance really is a tax, not just a pretend one.

As a general guide:. Our guess is that this point may eventually be taken to court by someone caught by the new rule. In fact, just the opposite, the Agency allows people who are on low wages to only pay a portion of their obligations, and so the real non-full compliance rate for social insurance is just Something coming up next week of surprising interest to Debito.

As history has shown repeatedly G8 Summits , overt and unapologetic racial profiling — even public scapegoating of NJ , border fingerprinting justified on bigoted grounds , deliberate misconstruing of crime data to whip up public fear , even spoiling one of the last Beatles concerts! The Olympics is just that, and it really complicates things by bringing in foreigners, for the police get particularly carrot-arsed when they feel the outside world is watching.

As I wrote for the Japan Times some months ago:. Point is, international events bring out bad habits in Japan. And now we have Tokyo bidding for the Olympics? Cue yet another orgiastic official fear and crackdown campaign foisted on the Japanese public, with the thick blue line of the nanny state the biggest profiteer. Terrie below understandably hopes Tokyo gets the Olympics. Other rich elites in their twilight years, such as Andrew Carnegie, have historically felt the same impetus.

Spare Tokyo, its tourists , and its ever-more-policed international residents yet another fear and social-control media blitz. Give the Olympics to somebody else. On October 2nd an important overseas decision will be made that will determine the future of Tokyo as a city of international standing.

All the big wigs involved with trying to get the Games for Tokyo, from Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishihara on down, flew out to Copenhagen on Saturday Sep 26th for their date with fate. However, he may have left his final run for the finish line too late. Strong support in Madrid, for example was The only trouble is that few members of the IOC can actually read Japanese newspapers or watch Japanese TV, and so these last minute efforts are unlikely to have much effect.

Indeed, this lack of reach by Japanese media to a world audience is frequently lost on Japanese politicians and governmental organizations, who think that because they can view the media, everyone can.

This, in our opinion, is a good reason why Japan fails so frequently in its international bids for just about anything. As far as we understand, almost all of the billions of yen allocated by the government to promote tourism were spent in Japan in the Japanese media.

As it happened, luckily a short-lived economic boom in China and Korea in helped pulled in several extra million Asian tourists, but despite some mutual back-patting this was largely accidental, and was certainly not the result of the almost non-existent overseas PR campaign. Back to the local Bid Committee. We refer, of course, to the invisible foreign community. Yes, there is an English-language website, which from the dates of the photos and videos we presume was mainly put together for the benefit of the visiting IOC evaluation committee in April to show how cosmopolitan Tokyo is.

Take the the section that carefully provides one and one-only restaurant well, OK, there are two French establishments representing 12 different national cuisines. So we can only assume that foreigners will be asked to keep a low profile while Japan hosts the Games… and to pay their taxes on time. OK, enough of the sour grapes. There was also concern about violent crime. Chicago also has a strong chance according to observers, but it has the problem of whether or not it can really afford the expense of the Games, given the poor shape the local economy after the meltdown of the U.

Also some of the Chicago venues are apparently a long way out of the city and not currently well serviced by public transport. The other contender, Madrid, got a reasonably negative response that they may not fully appreciate the complexity of management required to host the Games.

Thinking positively, though, if we do win the right to host the Games, it will give the Tokyo metropolitan government a worthy project to focus on, and will cause them to finally do something with those ugly vacant lots built during the bubble era, that they are stuck with out at Odaiba. To wrap up, we do in fact hope that by some miracle Tokyo wins the Olympic Games.

It would be a blast to be in the middle of all the buzz that will come with such an event. In their own commemorative-edition article, TransPacific Radio last night came out with a synopsis of how the Otaru Onsens Case is very much alive and well today as an issue, at least in terms of the NJ community and a few NJ pundits in particular one of whom obsesses over it to the point of distraction and inaccuracy.

Excerpting TPR:. As with any heated issue and human rights issues are always heated , the disagreements range from perfectly legitimate concerns to objections that are, to put it nicely, based on misinformation or incorrect assumptions.

It is also no secret that, for a variety of reasons, his most vocal critics are almost entirely non-Japanese. Among the most high profile of those critics is Gregory Clark, whose column in the Japan Times gives him perhaps a wider audience than most other writers on the topic.

As far as we can tell, there is no such person as the one Clark is writing about. More TV media from the case blogged on Debito. In Part Four of this retrospective on the Otaru Onsens Case a decade on, I talk about how the J media received and reported on our filing of the lawsuit against Otaru Onsen Yunohana on February 1, The answer: Not well.

Comment from me follows embeds:. By Arudou Debito www. This is one more, less obvious, reason why we need a law against racial discrimination in Japan. And it becomes an example. Thus you nip promoting further racism in the bud. This does not happen in the broadcasts above, alas. Starts here, then has a playlist that goes to the next part.

Six parts, runs about 50 minutes total. We even have Tarento Daniel Carr coming off all sycophantic — blaming NJ for their plight and pointing out their foibles. Teeth begin to itch before long. Just a matter of ill-mannered people, which is an individual matter, not a cultural matter. That would remove the drama that TV news reports are such suckers for, alas. I see this pattern constantly in J news reports — most resort to portraying Japanese as somehow victims, while few ever portray NJ as residents with as much right to life here in Japan as anyone else.

And never, but never, is the issue shown as something as simple as stubborn and bigoted people butting heads as individuals regardless of nationality. And it deserves comment and reflection after years of protests, two books , countless articles , and successful lawsuits against the onsen albeit not against the negligent City of Otaru. I wrote this article by invitation for the Japonesia Review last January and submitted it in February.

My thoughts on this day are bittersweet. I know we did the right thing as Olaf noted, when I called him today, people are still talking about the case , and we had a good outcome in court. But I judge things like this based upon whether or not they could ever happen again.

The answer is, unfortunately, yes. There is no law to stop it, nothing for authorities to enforce. Ten years later, it feels more overdue now than in What has and has not changed regarding human rights for Non-Japanese in Japan. All seventeen were Japanese, except for three Caucasian males including the author from America and Germany, and one Chinese woman from Shanghai.

She, like the non-Japanese NJ men, was married to a Japanese and came to Yunohana as an international family. As soon as everyone had entered and bought tickets, we were told that the three Caucasian males in our group your author included were not allowed inside. So we refuse all foreigners equally. All foreigners? So my wife at the time asked about our daughters, both of whom were born and raised in Japan, spoke Japanese as their first language, and have Japanese citizenship.

One looks more Asian, with black hair and brown eyes, while one looks more Western, with brown hair and bluish eyes. But the younger one who looks like a gaijin will be refused entry. September 19, marks ten years since we visited Yunohana. Here is a survey of how things have changed, or not changed, in the past decade regarding human rights for NJ in Japan:. To the present day, as in , there are no legal means, outside of a courtroom, for people who are discriminated against to stop it.

It is convenient for vigilantes who dislike, fear, or do not want to be bothered with NJ to put a sign barring them. That is how discrimination spreads: strength in numbers. The author of this essay is a naturalized Japanese citizen. However, as the reader can see from his photo at the very beginning, a change of passport has not led to a change from Caucasian to Asian. In the majority of interviews I have had with exclusionary businesses, they have said that even after seeing proof of my Japanese citizenship my passport or driver license , I would still be excluded from the premises.

The laws are jus sanguinis , meaning you must have a Japanese blood relative in order to automatically get Japanese citizenship. I think the qualifiers will fade as the numbers increase. Japan apparently has no racial minorities moreover that all people who were in fact racially different were not citizens, therefore also not covered [4]. This is reinforced in public policymaking. Nor does the National Census kokusei chousa survey residents for ethnicity minzoku — only nationality kokuseki.

Cause : It was good timing. Similarly, it is probably too early to draw conclusions or show undue pessimism at this time. Wait and see. Japan is still the second-largest economy by GDP and by most measures larger than all other Asian economies combined. The current worldwide economic downturn notwithstanding, Japan has for three decades had a labor shortage.

This regime brought over millions of cheap Asian and South American laborers, more than doubled the NJ population of from one million to two, and fundamentally shifted the top three NJ ethnicities from 1 Korea North and South , 2 China, and 3 The Philippines [10] to 1 China, 2 Korea, and 3 Brazil. Industrial towns in Shizuoka, Gifu, and Aichi Prefectures showed NJ population percentages in the double digits, and for the first time mayors of these towns were demanding the national government secure equal rights and enhanced access to social services for their NJ residents [11].

NJ were coming to Japan, being welcomed, and put to work. They were filling a gap. Thanks to the low birthrate and long life expectancies of the Japanese public, the UN and the Obuchi Administration in jointly recognized that the Japanese population was aging, and would decrease by the late s if Japan did not import , NJ per annum [12].

Japan has, on average this decade, imported a net total of 50, NJ per annum. If trends continue, by , according to Shuukan Ekonomisuto January 15, , pg 16 , the percentage of Japanese over retirement age 65 is projected to be more than half of the entire population. Who will man the factories, pay in taxes, and maintain social security pension payments? NJ keep Japanese society young and the birthrate from falling further. The government is currently deliberating scrapping the current backdoor-labor visa regime, and establishing an official immigration policy.

It took advantage of the publicity from the lawsuit to open new branches. The Japanese government made it clear to the UN again in March that it has no intention of creating a law against racial discrimination, reiterating that it has an active judiciary for grievances, therefore no laws are necessary.

Several draft bills have been submitted to the Diet and to the Otaru City Government, but all have died in deliberation.

He sees the Ebetsu branch of Yunohana every day on his drive to work. Japan Focus, January 12, , www. The Japan Times has been doing a good job recently of documenting consumer rights law cases and also foreigner- related issues that might be of use to its readers. This is the first time such a case has been ruled in favor of the tenant.

In the case, the tenant was apparently told that there would be a contract renewal fee, but not why. The basis for the lawsuit was the revised consumer protection law, which the court agreed had precedence over the tenancy law. So, the requirement to pay rent renewal fees, as onerous as they are, has not gone away.

As most readers would be aware, the renewal fees are not the only sticking point when it comes to renting Japanese apartments. Certainly you CANNOT not pay them, since the fees are generally taken out of the deposit paid when you first moved in.

Talking to a certain large rental agent for foreigners, we have heard that the situation is quite different in the non-Japanese sector. Largely because expat apartments tend to be bigger and more expensive to keep vacant, and because there is also a dearth of tenants, landlords are being much more flexible and cooperative. They are cutting deals that strictly Japanese-facing landlords would never dream of. Arudou Debito in Tokyo. Sorry to be so late in reporting this, but some good news a couple of weeks ago: Eikaiwa NOVA embezzler and former boss Saruhashi gets his: sentenced to 3.

No word if the employees are going to get their money back, however. More on Debito. Sahashi is expected to appeal the sentence.

He denied embezzling the funds, telling the court he used the money on behalf of his employees. He tried to portray himself as only one of a group of senior Nova executives responsible for the decision. But the judge said that given the amount of money and his authority, Sahashi bore a heavy responsibility for the crime.

Rest of the article at. Courtesy of and commentary by Erich:. I spotted this the other day when buying lunch! The two foreign characters in this ad by Subway are treated fairly! A letter to the company may just kick off a constructive discussion. Arudou Debito in Muroto, southern Shikoku. The blogosphere has been aflame over the last month as a group of marginalized and disenfranchised and mostly Caucasian individuals have fought back against a juggernaut that has, in their eyes, compromised their personal rights and cast aspersions upon them.

These angry activists are in Japan, not the U. James shouts about the deliciousness of the burgers in broken Japanese on commercials that have saturated TV, the Internet and print publications. Lame, ignorant campaigns like this one may seem innocuous. But they give people license to mock and exclude people based on racial or cultural difference, which in turn can lead down a slippery slope to more troubling outcomes.

My own private Shanghai McNugget trauma came when I found myself pelted with them by a bunch of leering, gibberish-spouting fellow high schoolers while quietly eating a non-oriental menu item. Besides, asks James S. Bid: JPY Time left: 4day s. Bid: 5, JPY Time left: 10hour s. Bid: 11, JPY Time left: 2day s. Bid: 3, JPY Time left: 10hour s. Bid: 2, JPY Time left: 2day s. Bid: 5, JPY Time left: 4day s. Bid: JPY Time left: 6hour s.

Bid: 3, JPY Time left: 8hour s. Bid: 6, JPY Time left: 8hour s. Bid: 2, JPY Time left: 20hour s. Bid: 12, JPY Time left: 4day s. Bid: 2, JPY Time left: 8hour s. Bid: JPY Time left: 5day s. Bid: 4, JPY Time left: 1day s. Bid: 3, JPY Time left: 9hour s. Bid: 8, JPY Time left: 3hour s. Bid: 1, JPY Time left: 9hour s. Bid: JPY Time left: 8hour s. Bid: 30, JPY Time left: 4day s.

Bid: 2, JPY Time left: 5day s. Bid: 4, JPY Time left: 3day s. Bid: 2, JPY Time left: 1day s. Bid: 7, JPY Time left: 9hour s. Bid: 2, JPY Time left: 7hour s. Bid: 17, JPY Time left: 2day s.

 

Charging different fares by nationality, according to my investigations back in , is not allowed by the Ministry of Transport. But it happens in Japan, it seems quite unabated. Where are you, government enforcers? Dear Debito, First of all, lot of thanks for you daily effort to the cause of improving the living of the foreign community in Japan and arduous endeavor without any doubt.

The last two years I have been witnessing how foreigners colleagues are denied travel tours national and international because they are foreigners and can not speak Japanese fluently. This time happened to my girlfriend when trying to make a reservation for a tour trip to Hong Kong for the both of us. It made her felt so bad that she automatically canceled. Any thoughts would be really appreciate it. Please find enclose the mail. Thanks for your time.

A in Tokyo. From: yuka. Also from J:. As I say within the inside cover:. LANDED is an essential resource for anyone considering buying the most expensive consumer good in one of the most expensive and tricky housing markets in the world. As per the spirit of Debito. I will be in Tokyo next week to speak at the following events, which are open to the public:.

May 11 at noon — Book launch sponsored by the Canadian and the Australian and New Zealand chambers of commerce. Christopher Dillon chris dilloncommunications. Looks like there be a similar takeover and people left without jobs or remuneration for past work, so people in the industry, heads up. I was forwarded this morning the following internal email from GEOS, and those in the know might be able to explain better here or elsewhere what this all means.

With the absolutely regrettable news of the bankruptcy of Geos Corp, I must tell you that your salaries for the time period between , March 16th to April 21st Will NOT be paid to you. We will work on a way for you all to collect some of your money back through the government.

We are still unsure of the procedures to do this. G-Education has offered to take over the Geos Corporate sales Division and resume all corporate class operations from the May 6th However it will be under the new payroll system as follows:.

At this point the GCI has been completely decimated. Our clients are outraged and my teachers left on stand by. Myself and Terakawa-san have made a gentlemens agreement to try and salvage and rebuild our perfectly-functioning, profitable corporate class system. We are giving ourselves 3 months to do it, or we will eat our hats. What we need from all of my precious teachers is an agreement that you would like to continue your classes with Myself and Terakawa-san at the helm. And we hope to resume operations immediately after golden week.

A full list of them here. The buzz from the Japan Times, Editorial, March 23, Unless local governments and concerned businesses make serious efforts to attract more passengers, some airports may be forced to close. The survey compared the actual number of passengers who used the 72 airports in fiscal with passenger-number forecasts. At about half of the 72 airports, actual use was less than 50 percent of what was forecast. The chance of the actual passenger total of the airport exceeding the forecast amount is almost nil, as it connects only to Seoul, with one round-trip service a day.

From April 16, it will also offer a once-daily round-trip service to Kobe. Major airlines have shied away from Ibaraki, fearing a lack of passengers. The airport, about 80 km from Tokyo, is touted as the third for the capital, but access to it is hardly convenient. I also will state that I have no problem with regional airports being built as long as they are used.

As the Japan Times editorial mentions above, if access is convenient. However, I thought Hanamaki Morioka defied that assumption pretty badly yesterday, so let me narrate the adventure:. As regular Debito. But as my JAL mileage seems to accumulate less and less every year, I found that I could only get as far as Hanamaki Airport this year the next band of free return flights starts at Sendai and stretches to Osaka, I was about miles short.

So I made arrangements to meet friends in Morioka, gave a speech in Sendai, and did my business further south. I arrived at Shin-Hanamaki only to find the stationmaster advising me to get a cab from there to the airport. I said I had a ticket all the way to Hanamaki Airport Station but he still made the same recommendation. I asked for a refund of the remaining two-station portion but he refused to give it.

So I followed my ticket to see where it would take me. It took me outside, a five-minute walk, to a completely separate teeny station that was JR Shin-Hanamaki regular-train station. With changes, it took me another half hour to get to JR Hanamaki Station, where I changed to another station which after another twenty minutes or so got me to the Holy Land. It was 4kms from the airport, a sign said. As was advised, no way to get there but again by cab.

Here are some pictures to illustrate how idiotic the situation is click on any photo to expand in browser :. Caption: Note the distance to the airport: 4kms. Used to be two. Still, this JR station was never connected to the airport, is the point. Caption: Station office is closed. Note time on clock. You have to hand in your ticket into a little mailbox as you enter the station doors.

Honor system. Caption: Business is done for the day. Nice to have bureaucrats go home so early. If they even come to work here at all. On the way to the airport, I talked to the cabdriver about this situation. It was in fact 6 kms from Shin-Hanamaki Station, meaning I had just gone one great ellipse to get to the airport.

From Morioka Station. But they decided to spend even more money to build another terminal closer to the auto expressway. All told, I wasted close to an hour between arriving by shinkansen and arriving at the airport; good thing I allowed enough time to get there.

I was also yen cab ride poorer for the experience, but sometimes one has to pay to get interesting blog entries.

But what kind of a government and infrastructure builds an airport, and then makes it nearly impossible for basic public transport to service it?

Even dupes the consumer into believing the JR station goes to the airport? This is why the regional airports attracted so much controversy last month. And why, every now and again, we get annoyed articles about bureaucrats building public buildings, staffing them with retired bureaucrats, then making it as complicated or expensive as possible for the public to actually use them. As we should. Thanks for the memories, Hanamaki.

Arudou Debito back in Sapporo. Following up on some previous Debito. Read on:. First up is a notice I received world about on February 28, , from a Nagoya resident. It asks people to lock their doors properly and be careful of walking alone. Then it digresses to say that the DPJ is planning to bring in immigrants and grant them suffrage, and that more crimes are anticipated, so protect your family and property by linking your opposition to the NJ PR suffrage bill to crime prevention.

And who put this out? They are not in any way affiliated with a group or religion. Very well rendered in classic easily-understood manga illustration, it zeroes in on the dangers of NJ PR suffrage in terms of Chinese hordes. Once they get elected, tiny little carbon-copy slanty-eyed Maos all vote in a bloc in small towns and get elected. Etc etc. And finally for today, an actual published mook, found on newsstands in Tokyo and no doubt much elsewhere on March 7, What follows are the Table of Contents and a sample page, courtesy of MS.

This is why we need laws against hate speech in Japan — to prevent the knock-on effects of fear by anonymous bullies being further fanned by the profit motive and marketing sharks. Comments from submitter BT included. Greetings and salutations!

Just came across this little gem while reading the Asahi Shinbun earlier today. Japanese people generally have high driving skills and similar physical features. But the United States, whose society was more or less built by immigrants, has people with various physical features and behavioral patterns. What is your view? But this is something that has to be overcome. What can companies do to avoid the pitfalls that have plagued Toyota Motor Corp.

Kobayashi is an expert on crisis management concerning safety measures and is well-versed in recall matters. Because product problems are bound to crop up, he says companies should deal with them while paying attention to detail. Question: In the United States, Toyota has come under fire for being tardy in issuing recalls. What is your sense of the whole Toyota issue? Answer: Trouble always occurs when a carmaker develops, produces and introduces a new vehicle.

When problems occur, modifying the vehicle is what every automaker in the world does as a matter of course. While the modification is usually carried out on cars to be produced in the future, the system of recalls specifically targets vehicles that have already been manufactured so that they are fixed, too. I think the biggest problem with Toyota was its failure to recognize the difference in thinking in Japan and the United States over the issues of recalls and safety.

It apparently made a typically Japanese judgment. Overseas subsidiaries of car manufacturers that are aware of these things had better take the lead in coping with recalls. However, faced with rapid market expansion and increased sales, Toyota probably decided that it would be easier for the headquarters in Japan to make a judgment.

Overseas subsidiaries must hire locally and assimilate. Naturally, there can be various troubles even with cars developed in Japan that are regarded as good in the country.

Problems need to be handled with attention to detail. Q: Toyota has decided to introduce a brake override system that enables a driver to stop the car even if the gas pedal is depressed.

Was it a problem that there was no such system previously? A: It was rather whether Toyota had explained to customers the lack of the system and what could happen as a consequence.

A bit of a tangent, but not really. Japan was morbidly fascinated by the spectacle of Toyota president Akio Toyoda apologizing to the U. Congress for the deadly defects that led to the recall of 10 million of its cars worldwide. Once feared and admired in the West, Japan has stumbled for decades through a series of lackluster leaders and dashed hopes of revival.

Through it all, though, Japan could cling to one vestige of its former prestige: Toyota—the global gold standard for manufacturing quality.

And now this. Toyota is getting lampooned all over the world in cartoons about runaway cars. Shielded by the U. No matter how quickly Chinese and South Korean rivals grew, Japan could argue that its key competitive advantage was the quality of its brands.

There was some sign of slippage even before the Toyota recalls. Many other top Japanese manufacturing brands lost their made-in-Japan luster, says Michael J. Smitka, an economist who specializes in the Japanese auto sector. Sanyo is gone, its pieces sold off in a restructuring. Toshiba and Fujitsu also are reorganizing. Sony is as much a Hollywood hitmaker as a Japanese manufacturer, and Mitsubishi Motors, Mazda, and Nissan have all had tie-ups with foreign companies through the years.

In the early part of the last decade, particularly under the maverick administration of celebrity prime minister Junichiro Koizumi, Japan made fleeting attempts to promote itself as the land of the new new thing: nano-this, bio-that. Nothing stuck. There is still no Japanese Google. So Toyota remained special, the largest and virtually the last remaining face of Japanese manufacturing and trading prowess.

But the recall has now exposed problems there, too. Like many Japanese companies, even global ones, it has suffered from an insularity and parochialism, and a hierarchical structure that discouraged innovation or input from others. The public-relations response has been plagued by Japanese cultural tendencies to dodge controversy and conflict, even to the point of denying glaringly dangerous problems, like sticking accelerating pedals. In many ways, Toyota is symptomatic of a nation that has lost its way.

According to a Pew survey, Japanese were more dissatisfied with the direction of their country than almost any other nation, including Pakistan and Russia. As a result, the Japanese electorate in August threw out the old guard Liberal Democratic Party after a half century of nearly unbroken rule.

Hatoyama talked about Japan taking a larger role in the world, but it was telling that his first big international splash was on a local issue: urging the U.

For many, the Toyota debacle suggested a further step in the wrong direction. A generation of people in their 30s and 40s—the prime working and family-raising years—are said to be unwilling to take any risk, no matter how small. Sugomori nesting people spend their days seeking bargains online.

With wages declining, soshoku-kei danshi grass-eating men avoid going out or trying to find a career for themselves. According to some surveys, this generation has reported preferences for avoiding cars, motorcycles, and even spicy food.

Entrepreneurship is seen as an unpromising career prospect. Estimates of the number of hikikomori shut-ins who have given up on social life have risen. Japanese psychologist Tamaki Saito, the foremost authority on the trend, speculated in that the number of such Japanese could be 1 million; last month authorities said it may be as high as 3. This all has dire economic effects. A shrinking, bargain-hunting, risk-averse population translates into a deflationary spiral, low wage growth, and decreased tax revenues.

Initially, many in Japan denied the problem, called the controversy an American overreaction, and concocted conspiracy theories about the U. Now, however, the Hatoyama administration is moving to push change on Toyota in ways its business-friendly predecessors in the LDP never would have, says Jeff Kingston, a professor of Asian studies at Temple University—Japan. The mainstream media have also taken off the gloves, he notes, with some of the biggest newspapers saying that Toyota has embarrassed Japan in the world, and that Toyota must regain the trust of its customers.

The less rosy scenario is that Japan will respond to this humiliation by retreating deeper into its shell. The elite now understands the problems Japan faces, but the cultural shift required to confront them may just be too great, says Edward Lincoln, a New York University Japan scholar.

Rather than, for example, competing with China for the leadership role in Asia, it is quite likely that the Japanese will cede that ground while feeling sorry for themselves, says Lincoln.

In other words, Japan will continue to give up, fade away, and blame its limitations on demographics and the changing international balance of power. In this bleak view, the Japanese will return to their mantra of shoganai nothing can be done. Granted, I think Japan is in relative regional decline as I think America is in relative world decline; but that was inevitable as other countries get rich and develop.

Time for some good news, for a change. After some negotiations, the MOJ has dropped the requirement that people be enrolled in Japanese health insurance programs. So sez Freechoice. That it is no longer a requirement is good news, and now that we have formal acknowledgment of such in writing from the GOJ is the final nail.

Courtesy of Aly. Good news! The fruits of our labors together have been realized. Guideline No. The guideline never applied to permanent residents; as previously, they are not required to present an insurance card at all. It would seem that Free Choice has the jump on the news — again. The foreign community united together in standing up to the bureaucracy and our voices were heard. We at the Free Choice Foundation would once again like to express our heartfelt thanks to you for your participation in this important issue.

Leach off their work for a year or three, then send them home. Too bad. To: debito debito. My friend Emily Homma and myself are trying to reach out to the English speaking press in Japan, so that the message below reaches as many people as possible. We hope that you will be able to help us spreading the word. She helped them with Japanese language support, clothing donations Japan is much colder than The Philippines and others.

You may have heard of this program through local news. The Economic Partnership Agreement of Japan EPA with other countries, especially with the Philippines JPEPA , has placed many Filipino nurses and caregivers working in Japan in a miserable situation where they are subjected to unfair labor practices, extreme pressure to study kanji, and poor salaries.

When they arrived in Japan in May , the Filipino nurses and caregivers were glad to be finally given the opportunity to serve Japanese society as hospital workers. It is a system that, unfortunately for the foreign workers, only those with high level-Grade 12 Japanese training or nursing graduates could understand.

Specifically, the Filipino nurses find themselves in the following extremely frustrating situations that leave them no choice but contemplate leaving Japan soon:. Japan puts the Filipino nurses and caregivers in a cheap labor trap, requiring them to pass the Licensure examinations within three years although they are given only six months of formal Basic Nihongo study and occasional group reviews. The Japanese government and the Japan Nurses Association JNA insist that foreign nurses take the examination in Japanese without furigana phonetic guides for the kanji characters.

Yet, the nurses are required to pass the licensure examination to get promoted to fulltime nurse positions and acquire the privilege to bring their dependents to Japan. Considering that medical kanji is extremely difficult even to their Nihongo teachers in Japan, this highly restrictive stance of the government and the JNA not only reflects a serious barrier to foreign nurses from getting integrated into the local workforce but also a clear intent to use or exploit the foreign nurses for three years on a temporary basis just like any expendable commodity.

The salary and benefits for these foreign workers—a gross total of only ,, yen—are not enough to sustain a decent and respectable life in Japan. With majority of the health workers receiving only a net pay of about 60, yen after deductions, they have to resort to extraordinary remedies just to meet all of their living expenses in Japan: house rent, electricity, gas supply, Internet connection, cellular phone bills, and transport expenses.

This puts them on a starvation situation and makes them unable to send a substantial amount of money to their respective dependents in their homelands. Indeed, some hospital administrators in Japan make local Japanese health workers work on a 7. Foreign nurses in Japan are subjected to undue comparison and unfair competition with local workers, fostering great insecurity on the former. This breeds disrespect and scorn towards the foreign workers and fosters an unfriendly atmosphere in many work settings.

As a result, the foreign nurses are finding it extremely difficult to cope with their new environment, making it a big question if they could really fit in and be accepted as workers in Japan under an atmosphere of mutual understanding and cooperation.

The experience and education of foreign nurses working in Japanare comparable and largely attuned to the culture and job expectations of Western countries. They are therefore finding it difficult to adjust to the kind of assistant nurse work and nursing aide tasks expected from them in Japan. Compounding the problem is that it was not made clear to them before hiring what specific job functions they are expected to perform, a situation made worse by the language gap and the inadequacy of the foreign workers in understanding Nihongo.

Thus, even if some of the foreign nurses have already attained a certain level of Nihongo, there is a crying need for Japanese-language nursing books, training materials, and exam reviewers to be translated into English and explained in English.

There is no existing training program or orientation for foreign nurses on the Japan nursing system before they assume their jobs. Due to the absence of this training or orientation, foreign nurses are frequently reprimanded and ridiculed by their local workmates when they are unable to perform according to the Japanese system. For their part, hospital administrators just rely on the suggestions and complaints aired by the foreign workers, and many of those suggestions and complaints are simply ignored.

There is clearly a need for immersion and retraining of foreign nurses so they can meet the work and performance standards of the hospitals of their host country. The Japanese work ethics and work attitudes differ greatly from those of foreign nurses.

For the leaders of local workers, bullying and humiliating a trainee nurse is part of the training, and the trainee nurse is expected to endure this abuse without complaining. But foreign nurses, having been trained in a work culture where respect and professionalism are a must among workmates especially in the presence of patients, often are constrained to express their concerns and suggestions against such bullying and humiliation.

However, their doing so is often perceived as en expression of distrust towards the prerogatives of the hospital management, so even the mild criticisms expressed by foreign workers could easily backfire on them. There is hardly any room for advancement or career development for foreign nurses in Japan.

In the absence of any program by the Japanese government and its health services sector, the career and promotion opportunities of foreign nurses and other workers are seriously stifled in Japan. Even if they work in Japan for a long time, there is very little hope for them to rise above the position of nursing aides performing the tasks of caregivers and domestic helpers.

There being no labor attaches to represent them in Japan, the foreign nurses are left to fend off for themselves and to fight for their rights on their own.

As a general rule, JICWELS always takes the side of oppressive hospitals when foreign nurses complain against questionable employment terms and practices. The foreign workers, already burnt out at work, therefore often drive themselves to exhaustion in fighting for their own rights in hospitals with an uncaring administration or management. Considering these very serious problems besetting Filipino nurses and other health workers in Japan, it is respectfully proposed that the JICWELS and the Philippines, particularly the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration POEA , should immediately and carefully examine the flaws in the hiring and deployment of the first batch of Filipino nurses and other workers to Japan.

This needs to be done before the second batch is allowed to come to Japanin May Both Japan and the Philippines must sit down together in a spirit of amity and cooperation to forcefully and meaningfully address the working conditions of Filipino nurses and other health professionals in Japan, an increasing number of whom have been suffering from extremely low pay and inadequate benefits, work displacement, mental stress, and utter frustration in their jobs.

The nurses have been looking forward for that chance to be heard through your column. They had their first try of the nursing exam given in Japanese last February 21, but they could hardly understand the kanji characters, not even the directions. From about 80 JPEPA nurses that took the exam, only two of them who had straight four months of fulltime review without work under a doctor mentor could say that they could read many of the kanji characters, but do not understand the meaning of the questions.

Majority are thinking of staying here in Japan just within the length of the three-year period, for they do not expect to pass the licensure exam if given in Japanese with full kanji without phonetic symbols. This would mean, Japan does not only give these foreign workers difficulties in life and career, but wastes its own resources and tax money training these people in their Nihongo and provide dormitory accommodation for six months only to find them leave from May this year when the group is expected to renew their one-year visas until the end of the three-year period to pass the exam.

There are a lot more issues related to these problems…they were mentioned in my previous letter. Writing to you jetlagged from Sapporo, just back from Canada. I had a wonderful trip and if I can get my next Japan Times column out Tuesday March 2 out in time my topic I had been writing about got bumped with the sumo stuff I blogged about yesterday I might write some impressions. Well done. Even the management says the administrative guidance offered by the authorities, as in the law requiring ID from NJ tourists vs.

Do what SM did below and carry the law with you. And stand up for yourselves when you check into a hotel. We met in September at the Writers Conference in Kyoto.

I enjoyed your presentation, and I am a regular reader of your website. If you would like to use my story as well as the letter below on your site, feel free to add it. If you do decide to use it on your site, could you remove my name and email address? For Christmas vacation, I decided to avoid the morning rush to the airport and spend the night at the Comfort Hotel, conveniently attached to Chubu International Airport.

When I checked in, I was immediately asked for my passport. I let the clerk know that I was a long-term resident of Japan, and would be giving her my home address rather than a passport.

She then said that if I would not give her the passport, I would have to show her my Alien Registration card. I told her that as a resident with a permanent address, this would not be necessary.

She said it was the law, and that to stay in the hotel, I would have to show her my card. I once again refused, telling her that she did not have the authority to ask for an Alien Registration card. She became quite flustered. I continued filling out the form, including my full name and address. When I passed her the form, she stood her ground and said I must show her my card.

I asked to speak to a manager. She left, and I waited in the lobby for ten minutes. She returned with another woman who did not say a word to me. She told me the amount to pay, gave me my change and sent me on my way. I was too tired to pursue it, and just happy that I had a room to go to. In the morning, I returned to the lobby and asked to speak to a manager. He was polite, but quite insistent that the law stipulates that all foreign residents are required to show their Alien Registration.

I asked him to research it further and gave him my business card. By the way, he was Chinese. I asked him if he was ever required to show his Alien Registration when he stayed at hotels. He then gave me his business card which indicated that he had taken a Japanese name. When I pointed this out to him, and asked whether his name may be the reason he is never asked to show his identification, he smiled and agreed that that was probably the case.

Thank you for having stayed at Comfort Hotel Central Intl. Airport at the end of Last year. The reason was the staff had been confused the registration procedure for non-Japanese residents with the one for foreign visitors. I looked over the Law concerning this case. I learned from this case and gave directions to our hotel staffs. I keep on training them so that they understand the Laws concerning the registration procedure for non-Japanese guests well and provide good service.

Needless to say, I was very pleased that he had followed up on the problem, and accepted responsibility for the mix-up. As I travel quite a bit, I am going to give the Comfort Hotel another chance. Thanks, Debito, for keeping me in the know of my rights.

But this time, according to this article, it looks as though they got bit in the ass for it. Kinda makes one believe in karma after all. Arudou Debito in Banff. MCD is closing restaurants in Japan, the latest sign of the faltering economy in the Asian country.

Japan has 3, stores. The fast food market in Japan is bad because of the weak economy. WEN said in December that it was exiting the Asian country. Some experts have urged U. The Golden Arches has been struggling in Japan for a while.

A Texas Burger, with barbecue sauce, fried onions, bacon, cheese and spicy mustard, proved to be a hit. Profit is expected to plunge Global sales rose 2. Comparable store sales in the U. Shares are up 6. Oh how the mighty have fallen. Toyota, once the 1 automaker worldwide well, for a spell after years of building on a sterling reputation created over decades for quality and service, has finally fallen to earth.

I could never find any official stats on how many NJ are part of the Toyota system within Japan. I was wondering if someone would be blaming the foreigners for sloppy parts. Well, it turns out, they kinda are. Read on. Toyota City, about miles east of Tokyo, once appeared on the map — if it appeared at all — as Koromo. But in town leaders renamed it after the up-and-coming local car producer, and twinned their modest town with the then global centre of auto production, Detroit.

Toyota has long been known both for the ruthless efficiency of its production line, and the matchless quality of the cars that emerged at the other end. The latest recall, to fix a fault that could jam accelerator pedals, involves 4. That comes on top of another five million vehicles sent back to workshops for repair in the US, after a separate accelerator problem reportedly led to several deaths and at least a dozen class-action lawsuits in North America.

Today, claims that only Toyotas made outside Japan using foreign-made parts were affected by the crisis was dealt a blow when it emerged that there have been more than complaints, in Japan as well as the US, about the brakes on its new hybrid Prius model. And yet, as industry analysts have noted, the company has yet to make a formal apology for these shortcomings, let alone unveil a convincing programme for addressing them.

Experts are pondering how a company that made better, more reliable cars than almost anyone else could have ended up in such a mess. At home in Japan, which has been mostly unaffected by the recalls, the media has already named the guilty party — foreign parts makers. The faulty accelerator pedal, for example, was made by a North American company — one reason why Toyota is reportedly switching back to its decades-old domestic supplier Denso Corp.

That is just one symptom of a wider problem familiar to many multinationals: how to protect quality at overseas factories, particularly when you are a company that employs , people around the world, selling in countries.

Some commentators also credit Toyota with a more profound innovation: shifting responsibility for production from managers back to the shop floor. In fact, Toyota factories employ teams whose sole job is to find problems and save time and money.

American factories were hampered by stalling production lines, but Toyota improvised, says Hasegawa. One US consumer group blames the accelerator pedal problem on at least 18 deaths in the last decade. A comeback seems inevitable. I knew the person, was happy to oblige, and we exchanged some story drafts until satisfaction about the submissions were reached on both sides.

Alas, I am not a foreigner in Japan, and I said I did not want my stories to be included either under this rubric or within this concept. We have enough trouble dealing with it over here without it being propagated in more liberal societies such as NZ.

Graham, IMHO, should know better, and should publish better. So I protested and asked the rubric to be changed or my writing withdrawn. After several months of silence, I got the final word: The rubric would stand. Sad to see. I feel the publisher led me down a garden path, and then wound up pigeonholing me through imported racist paradigms. Should be known about. Actually, I interviewed you in a room at Sophia University Jan.

Now I wonder if you would be interested and have the time to craft a story for a book I would like to publish in I have taken the liberty of including the brief guidelines straight off to you, knowing that you are already a very productive writer — I greatly admired your home page and writings. Must be hugely helpful to all people, newcomers and old-hands in Japan. Hope to hear from you soon. All the best for There can be exceptions but 5, words would be a take-over!

We had a few months of drafts bouncing back and forth, arrived at finished product, then I got this update:. From: debito debito. Hi Graham. Recalling this we decided to ask friends there if they would like to write about an experience in Japan. The contributions were sufficient to start work on the next book. It will be published by the end of , a compilation of forty stories by foreigners who live or have lived in Japan.

It will fascinate anyone interested in how foreigners view Japan and what their unique experiences were. It is hoped that Japanese people will read these stories and reflect on the images and opinions of people who love Japan. If this is how the book is shaping up, I want no part of it. Either have your publisher make the proper accommodations for long-term residents and citizens or withdraw my story. I will have no part in perpetuating racist stereotypes overseas.

Dear Debito, Sorry you feel the book will not shape up and be fair to all, especially to the Japanese. All the stories have wonderful unique experiences to tell. There are haiku and tanka, too. It is a fine collection. I would be sad to lose your story because it gives an edge to the book which is lacking somewhat, I feel. However, good experiences in an adopted country have a readership, I am sure, not only among non-Japanese but also I hope among Japanese.

Not the final title at all. What title would you suggest? I am open. What else would you like changed? Again open. I hope I can keep your story. Cheers, Graham. Graham, I think you missed my point. You are selling this as a book with the perspectives of foreigners. What about me, then? I am not a foreigner.

Can you not see the disconnect? Not foreign. I am not a gaijin, or a gaikokujin, and I will not be associated with any work which imports and uses that binary rubric to view the world. I am a Japanese. Full stop. Calling me a foreigner is inaccurate. With me so far? I am deeply disappointed….. Omedetoh, Sorry such a late reply, but Xmas or something.

All the best for Tiger,. Not to mention their lousy treatment of handicapped guests embezzling GOJ subsidies earmarked for barrier-free facilities. Now for an update. Over the past couple of days, a Debito. We aim to please. Summary about Toyoko-Inn hotels: 1 They will refuse foreigners if the foreigner does not show some kind of ID. I had exactly the same experience with this hotel chain.

In my case my wife went first and explained the situation to me by phone. I had her convey that I refuse to stay at the hotel on the grounds of discrimination. Needless to say I wont be going to that chain again. The experience puts me off traveling in Japan. At that time I decided to discontinue the conversation before it became even weirder than it already was. Because that hotel chain is quite cheap and they are all over Japan.

Their webpage and all their information is multilingual Japanese, English, Korean, Chinese. However, I believe equal treatment matters more to foreigners than any non-Japanese language information. I personally will not be staying at Toyoko-Inn hotels again as long as they have such a policy in place. Suddenly they paid more attention and promised my wife that we would get a reply from the hotel management regarding that matter.

But if we do get anything in writing that might be of interest to others I will post it here. One final thing about Toyoko-Inn: If you want to make reservation online, you need to tell them your date of birth and your citizenship. Even Japanese guests need to provide this information! And the logic behind their selection is incomprehensible. You can check it out yourself. First I am not saying this never happens, because obviously it does not one of the dudes that says if it does not happen to me it does not happen.

It really sucks. I have used Toyoko Inns for over 5 years now for business and have never had this happen to me. I am usually travelling alone and on business. The reason I bring this up could there be some other type of profiling going on? I am not married to a Japanese woman and usually show up alone. I complete the check in process in Japanese and write my name in katakana and address in my feeble nihongo. The places are cheap, clean, and have good internet connectivity and even a little breakfast in the morning.

I think the best deal in Tokyo is the Toyoko at Shinagawa if you can get in. It sucks this is happening…. I hope the wives are furious! Shark do you mind saying where this happened? And if you get a reply I would love to see it. I use this chain all the time. KFC aka Kentucky Fried Chicken has been accused of racism, according to various media sources, thanks to a recent advertisement it ran in Australia.

Here it is :. The Australian arm of the fast-food chain KFC has been accused of racial insensitivity over a television commercial showing an outnumbered white cricket fan handing out pieces of fried chicken to appease a dancing, drumming and singing group of black West Indian supporters.

Although intended only for an Antipodean audience, the clip has quickly found its way around the world on the internet, prompting stinging criticism in the US where fried chicken remains closely associated with age-old racist stereotypes about black people in the once segregated south.

KFC has the answer. The flare-up comes three months after another racial controversy between Australia and the US in which the American singer Harry Connick Jr, appearing as a judge on an Australian television talent show, reacted strongly to a skit in which a group of singers appeared with blacked up faces to emulate the Jackson Five. The Australian arm of the fast food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken has had to withdraw an advertisement after accusations of racial insensitivity.

It showed a white cricket fan trying to pacify a group of rowdy West Indian fans by handing around fried chicken. When the advertisement reached America via the internet there were complaints. It was accused of reinforcing a derogatory racial stereotype linking black people in the American deep south with a love of fried food.

The advertisement from Kentucky Fried Chicken features a white cricket fan dressed in the green and gold of the Australian team surrounded by a group of West Indian supporters, who are dancing and singing to a calypso beat. He decides to quieten them down by handing around a bucket of fried chicken. Picked up by the American media, the advertisement immediately stirred controversy, because it was alleged to have perpetuated the racial stereotype that black people eat a lot of fried chicken.

It is the second time in three months that something broadcast in Australia has caused a racial stir in America. The last flare-up was over an entertainment show on the Australian network Channel Nine in which a group of singers appeared with blacked-up faces to impersonate the Jackson Five. We get KFC Australia doing a hasty retreat from its controversial commercial days after it goes viral on YouTube, and pulling it pretty quickly.

Now contrast with the ad campaign by another American-origin fast-food multinational, McDonalds. More on what I found wrong with that ad campaign here. This argument was also made in comments to this blog as well. Why the difference? So I bring it up for discussion here on Debito.

What do readers think? Now back to business. While doing research over the new year, I got quite a shock when I was doing some followup on a case of exclusionary practices.

I reported on Debito. A brief write up, with links to sources, follows. At the very bottom are screen captures of the FTIA website evidencing the exclusionary practices. Place : Fukushima Prefecture 35 hotels, now hotels [1].

The FTIA said they advised them of the unlawfulness of this practice, and would be clarifying their website questions in future. It would appear that the prefectural tourist agency officially offering the option to refuse NJ lodgers enables businesses to refuse. Here are some evidentiary screen captures from the FTIA website as of January 3, click on image to expand in your browser First, the site with search terms that indicate that hotels refuse NJ clients:.

Screen capture with different search terms, indicating hotels of the total allow in NJ:. Hi all. For a flat rate of Yen approx. Maximum weight is 20 kg!! There are no limits on distance, and anything within the framework of the law can be enclosed. Each envelope has a detachable bar code label, that the sender keeps, and another that the delivery man takes off upon delivery. The flat rate envelope can be deposited in mail boxes, and at P. Contrary to 1st class mail, these envelopes are transported by air, which makes them real fast!

The flat rate envelopes cannot be insured, but my buyers prefer it over registered 1st class mail, just because the envelopes are sturdy, and delivery is a day or two faster! As I deposited the items at a P. Next day, I found a form letter in my P. Box, informing me that both items had been sent surface and would thus be delayed by a day or two.

I went to see the postmaster to tell him, that this was totally useless, as — except for imminent, clear and present danger — Japan Post employees are not authorized to open and check the mail for contents. My conclusion — potential and active terrorists in Japan can be trusted in this country. Letting him take the keyboard for today. Instead the issue is being given superficial treatment:. If I may be facetious for just a minute, the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau should either fix the situation or cut the clerks out of the loop and pocket the cash for itself by establishing a legitimate residency permit market.

In recent years, a number of administrative scriveners have helped foreigners obtain residency permits illegally, taking advantage of the fact that the immigration control law stipulates no punitive measures for violators. Administrative scriveners were reportedly involved in at least 10 cases of fraudulent marriage and illegal employment exposed by the Metropolitan Police Department since Some even placed ads in free newspapers for foreigners to attract customers, the MPD said.

The MPD plans to provide information on nine other cases to the relevant local governments if those cases are also judged as heinous. The MPD arrested a year-old South Korean man in May last year on suspicion of brokering a fake marriage between a year-old South Korean woman and a year-old Japanese man. The Korean man told police he asked an administrative scrivener in the Tokyo metropolitan area to file an application for a residency permit that the woman needed in order to get married, a senior MPD officer said.

During police interrogations, the Japanese man and Korean woman reportedly said the scrivener filed the application on their behalf despite knowing their marriage was fake. Given their confessions, the MPD investigated whether it could bring a criminal charge against the scrivener in question. Because the immigration control law has no punitive provisions regarding false marriage applications, the MPD examined whether the scrivener could be accused of abetting a fake marriage, or of helping a suspect to evade capture.

The scrivener voluntarily submitted to questioning but denied any wrongdoing, saying he did not know it was a fake marriage. The MPD had no alternative but to give up bringing criminal charges against the scrivener. In July, the MPD arrested six Japanese and Chinese brokers in connection with a case in which a Chinese farmer illegally obtained a residency permit by posing as an interpreter.

Police investigations discovered forged employment contracts at the office of an administrative scrivener who is different from the one who prepared the application for the residency permit. The MPD has confirmed that scriveners were involved in 10 falsification cases since The scriveners accepted application requests from brokers and from applicants themselves.

The MPD suspects that such advertising facilitates illegal employment and fake marriages. For this reason, the MPD considers it necessary to deal harshly even with cases in which criminal charges cannot be filed, by calling for the authorities concerned to take punitive action.

Together with the metropolitan government and the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau, the MPD established a liaison council to discuss countermeasures against administrative scriveners involved in illegal immigration cases. Through the council, the MPD provides relevant information for the metropolitan government and bolsters its surveillance of illegal activities by scriveners. A senior member of the Tokyo association of administrative scriveners said his organization would strictly deal with any scriveners found to have committed illegal acts.

Its parent organization, the Japan federation of administrative scriveners associations, is making its own efforts to tackle the issue. Big news across Japan these past couple of days has been how the Winter Bonus has been slashed between 10 to 15 percent for bureaucrats:. Japan Times Friday, Dec.

This has long been standard practice in Japan, and every June and December the postwar Japanese economy suddenly becomes awash in cash, as families suddenly get a glurt of around man en in their accounts. The problem is that this practice is a bellwether: other industries see this as an excuse to cut their own salaries. My university which is private-sector, but they directly cited the Bonus cuts to the national bureaucrats kokka koumuin as justification cut all of our Bonuses this year and will continue to do so in perpetuity.

As in: they cut our bonus multiple from 4. I might add that this is on top of the general trend: my total annual salary has dropped more than man between and I searched for a source for this, but came up short. Double whammy. And banks are wondering why more people are defaulting on their loans these days?

They should stop being greedy and start lowering their premiums too to match the fact that people in general are being paid less. Lose the Bonus System. Bid: 1, JPY Time left: 1day s. Bid: 1, JPY Time left: 3day s. Bid: JPY Time left: 6day s. Bid: JPY Time left: 1day s. Bid: 3, JPY Time left: 4day s. Bid: JPY Time left: 2day s. Bid: JPY Time left: 4day s. Bid: 5, JPY Time left: 10hour s. Bid: 11, JPY Time left: 2day s. Bid: 3, JPY Time left: 10hour s. Bid: 2, JPY Time left: 2day s. Bid: 5, JPY Time left: 4day s.

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