Okinawa's lobbyist-in-chief scores a subtle win in Washington

| Jun 27, 2015

Okinawa's lobbyist-in-chief scores a subtle win in Washington

Chie Mikami’s new documentary, “Ikusabanu Todomi” (which loosely translates as “Bring the War to an End”), is about the protests against the new U.S. Marine Corps base in Henoko, Okinawa. Her previous film, “Hyoteki no Mura” (“The Targeted Village”), was about protests against the ...

Home electronics market loses its spark

| Jun 27, 2015

Home electronics market loses its spark

On May 25, Yamada Denki Co., the largest home electronics retailer in Japan, announced that it would be closing 46 outlets. Given that the stores had been losing money for at least a year and Yamada operates more than 1,000, the announcement wasn’t surprising, ...

A final indignity for those who built Japan

| Jun 20, 2015

A final indignity for those who built Japan

The first time I visited the Sanya district in Tokyo’s Taito Ward, I saw a lot of men drunk and passed out in the street and assumed they were all homeless, but as it turned out most worked and rented rooms in the area. ...

Japan's masochistic approach to immigration

| Jun 13, 2015

Japan's masochistic approach to immigration

The Asahi Shimbun’s online newsmagazine, Webronza, recently featured a conversation between former Asahi reporter Mieko Takenobu and sex-goods purveyor Minori Kitahara. They discussed the latter’s brief imprisonment after being busted for displaying “salacious material” at her store associated with the controversial “vagina artist” Rokudenashiko. ...

Blame batted about for stadium blunder

| Jun 6, 2015

Blame batted about for stadium blunder

The media is still very positive about the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but its ardor has cooled significantly with regard to the way the central government is holding up its end of the bargain. When Tokyo was selected by the International Olympic Committee in Buenos ...

Watch out for hidden hazards of buying land

| Jun 6, 2015

Watch out for hidden hazards of buying land

When we were looking for property we consulted topographical maps prior to checking a particular piece of land in person. Understanding the elevation of a plot is important if you’re buying land near the coast or along a river. In the event of flooding ...