Time up for bag-happy stores, users

| Apr 3, 2007

Time up for bag-happy stores, users

Retailers have long considered plastic bags basic to good service. Supermarket clerks toss tofu, eggs and ice cream into individual clear plastic bags to prevent a mess should the products’ own wrapping somehow break. More plastic bags are often provided just in case, then ...

Child-guidance centers lacking: experts

| Mar 21, 2007

Child-guidance centers lacking: experts

Child abuse in Japan may be expanding faster than social workers can keep pace, but there’s another side to the story as well: Many people outside the government child-welfare system are working hard to push those figures down. Meet two of those people, lawyer ...

Kids' group home a safe respite

| Mar 20, 2007

Kids' group home a safe respite

Despite the understaffing and overcrowding, the atmosphere at the Kibo no Ie (House of Hope) residential home for children lives up to its name: It is a place of optimism, a place of warmth. Caregivers at this aging building in eastern Tokyo smile cheerfully ...

Bank of Japan raises interest rate to 0.5%

Feb 22, 2007

Bank of Japan raises interest rate to 0.5%

Caught between growing voices in Europe for a rate hike and domestic politicians pressuring against it, the Bank of Japan raised its benchmark interest rate to 0.50 percent Wednesday. BOJ Gov. Toshihiko Fukui signaled the impending rate hike from 0.25 percent, and the decision ...

Feb 8, 2007

Libel suit attacks free speech: defendant

in some Western countries, and laws and the some courts in Europe and the United States protect people who are sued in this way. Legal experts say Japan has no similar safeguards. The article at the center of the case, “The Lies Behind the ...

Gore in town to push global-warming fight

Jan 16, 2007

Gore in town to push global-warming fight

Midway through a visit to Tokyo to promote his environmental documentary film “An Inconvenient Truth,” former U.S. Vice President Al Gore on Monday made sure to praise Japan as the birthplace of the Kyoto Protocol. Yet, earlier in the day Gore also prodded business ...

Jan 11, 2007

Mercury level acute; store pulls dolphin

A large supermarket chain in western Japan has permanently discontinued sales of dolphin meat after learning that mercury levels in a sample purchased at one of its outlets greatly exceeded government safety levels. Wakayama Prefecture-based supermarket chain Okuwa Co. pulled dolphin meat from shelves ...