January 2013
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Jan 31, 2013

N.Y. Senate hails monument to 'comfort women'

The New York state Senate passed a resolution Tuesday honoring a “comfort women” monument erected in the state, saying it serves as a reminder that the coercion of Asian women into sexual servitude by the Imperial Japanese Army was a “crime against humanity,” a ...

Kaieda lashes LDP on works spending

Jan 31, 2013

Kaieda lashes LDP on works spending

by Ayako Mie

Democratic Party of Japan leader Banri Kaieda lashed out Wednesday at the massive ¥4.7 trillion public works spending package compiled by the Liberal Democratic Party. In the first question-and-answer session in the Diet since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s policy speech Monday, Kaieda said, “the ...

Obama pushes immigration reform

Jan 31, 2013

Obama pushes immigration reform

by Zachary A. Goldfarb

President Barack Obama on Tuesday put the weight of his administration behind efforts to pass legislation allowing many of the 11 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. to earn citizenship, seeking to build on a rapidly shifting political consensus around the issue. Obama dedicated ...

Jan 31, 2013

Japan falls far on press freedom list

Japan plummeted to 53rd from the previous year’s 22nd in the 2013 press freedom ranking released Wednesday by Reporters Without Borders, a Paris-based nonprofit organization. Japan “has been affected by a lack of transparency and almost zero respect for access to information on subjects ...

Jan 31, 2013

U.S. stocks rise; Dow at five-year high

U.S. stocks rose Tuesday, with the Dow hitting a fresh five-year high, as investors weighed company earnings and a mixed batch of economic data. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 72.49 points, or 0.52 percent, to 13,954.42, just 1.5 percent below its all-time closing ...

Jan 31, 2013

Abe plans TPP stance before election

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he will present his basic policy on whether Japan should join the Trans-Pacific Partnership free-trade negotiations before the Upper House election in the summer. Appearing on television Tuesday, Abe stressed he has no intention of putting the thorny issue ...

Jan 31, 2013

'Out' gays often less stressed than straight men: study

Gays and lesbians who come out about their sexual orientation are less stressed than those who stay in the closet and are often more relaxed than heterosexuals, according to a study released Tuesday. Louis H. Lafontaine Hospital researchers tested levels of the hormone cortisol ...

World tourist numbers topped 1 billion in 2012

Jan 31, 2013

World tourist numbers topped 1 billion in 2012

Despite ongoing global economic uncertainty, international tourist arrivals exceeded 1 billion for the first time last year, with those numbers expected to rise further in 2013, a U.N. body said Tuesday. The number of arrivals grew by 4 percent to 1.035 billion in 2012, ...

Hidden truths laid bare in the details of realism

Jan 31, 2013

Hidden truths laid bare in the details of realism

by C.B. Liddell

With a population of around 35 million, Greater Tokyo is the ultimate “modernist” conurbation; a vast megacity, where something as old-fashioned as realist art might seem out-of-date and out-of-place. Maybe so, but on the metropolis’ western and eastern extremities stand two museums that, each ...

'Motoju Miyosawa: Katazome Stencil Dyeing'

Jan 31, 2013

'Motoju Miyosawa: Katazome Stencil Dyeing'

by Tomohiro Osaki

After meeting Muneyoshi Yanagi, a pioneer of the famous Mingei (folk arts) movement, artist Motoju Miyosawa (1909-2002) became a major advocate of the beauty of frugality, a quality that Mingei followers believed everyday objects possessed. During the 1960s, however, he chose to travel internationally ...

Jan 31, 2013

Australia to hold election Sept. 14

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard on Wednesday broke with tradition and announced the nation would go to the polls Sept. 14, saying she wanted to give “shape and order” to the year. Australians usually know only weeks before when an election will be held, ...

Boost wages to beat deflation: Rengo leader

Jan 31, 2013

Boost wages to beat deflation: Rengo leader

Japanese Trade Union Confederation (Rengo) President Nobuaki Koga said it is necessary for companies to raise employee wages to help the country out of deflation. “Wage deflation is a major factor that leaves the country in prolonged deflation,” Koga said Tuesday. Rengo hopes to ...