| Feb 14, 2012

Put children before politics

Almost a year after the crisis at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant following the March 11, earthquake and tsunami, one serious question remains: to what extent have residents in the vicinity of the plant been exposed to radiation? As ...

| Jan 30, 2012

Royal challenge awaits Noda

Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda appears strongly committed to revising the Imperial Household Law to let female members of the Imperial family remain in the royal family even if they marry commoners. The Imperial family is the oldest royal family in the world and Chapter ...

| Jan 9, 2012

China's Un-relenting watch

The entire world was shocked by the news of the death of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, who was as vicious a dictator as Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin or Mao Zedong. What are the political capabilities of Kim Jong Un, who has succeeded ...

| Dec 26, 2011

Postal execs crack the whip

Japan faces disarray in its mail delivery service as post offices, especially those in major cities and the Tokyo metropolitan area, struggle with mounting workloads following the dismissal of a large number of nonregular employees by Japan Post Service Co. (JPS) since September. And ...

| Dec 13, 2011

Real cause of nuclear crisis

Tokyo Electric Power Co. (Tepco), the operator of the stricken Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Station, has been insisting that the culprit that caused the nuclear crisis was the huge tsunami that hit the plant after the March 11 earthquake. But evidence is mounting ...

| Nov 28, 2011

Existential fear stalks M.D.s

The Japan Medical Association (JMA), once the most powerful lobby group with mighty political clout, still clings to its position of staunchly opposing any scheme to increase the number of doctors, in order to protect its own vested interests. As the nation faces an ...

| Nov 21, 2011

Primer for decontamination

The potentially lucrative business of decontaminating areas of radioactive substances released from Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power station may well go to companies handpicked by a government organization that has long played a leading role in promoting the construction of ...

| Oct 24, 2011

Ill omens for Asian economies

Even though Asia is still perceived to be the global economic growth center, there are signs of potential dangers of the regional economy heading toward a collapse because of a vicious circle of inflation and wage increases brought about by huge sums of speculative ...

| Oct 10, 2011

Tepco guarding its ground

Recent moves by Tokyo Electric Power Co. vis-a-vis Tepco’s Management and Finance Investigation Committee, an independent government panel, show how the power company has tried to avoid being forced to sell large chunks of its assets. As part of its maneuvers, Tepco has insisted ...

| Sep 26, 2011

Time favors Tepco rebound

As the crisis at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power station continues, there has been a mounting call in Japan to eliminate or reduce its reliance on nuclear power and to reform the regional monopoly enjoyed by the utilities, notably ...

| Sep 14, 2011

No rush to turn to renewables

Since the March 11 earthquake and tsunami severely damaged the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, faith in renewable energy sources has spread fast in many corners of the world as an emissions-free means of generating electricity. But placing excessive expectations on renewable energy ...

| Aug 29, 2011

The feudal lords of power

The inherently arrogant nature of the electric power industry in Japan came to light recently when Kyushu Electric Power Co. tried to influence a public hearing on whether to allow the company to resume operation of its Genkai nuclear power stations in Saga Prefecture. ...