Aug 27, 2014

Why universities can't compete

In his Aug. 25 article, “Japan’s universities can’t win,” professor Takamitsu Sawa has once again written on the all-important topic of university education in Japan. He emphasizes that the noncompetitiveness of Japanese universities internationally is due to relatively poorer funding, especially by the government, ...

Aug 27, 2014

See that changes fit the culture

Professor Takamitsu Sawa is an economist who should know better than to use statistics to extrapolate conclusions that could be misleading or erroneous. In his Aug. 25 article, he neither indicates tuition costs at European universities nor makes comparisons with EU dormitory housing. America ...

Aug 27, 2014

Bank's customers deserve better

Regarding the Aug. 20 Kyodo article “Citibank Japan to withdraw from retail banking business“: Both Japanese and foreign customers of Citibank Japan should pressure the bank to remain in Japan. As most U.S. corporations show zero long-term loyalty to a local community, the bank’s ...

Aug 27, 2014

Dining outdoors Italian style

The usage of the expression “al fresco” to indicate eating outdoors, as in Robbie Swinnerton’s Aug. 20 presentation of “Bakka: Neapolitan-style pizza al fresco in the heart of Shibuya,” is really starting to bother me. In Italy, “al fresco” means “in jail” [or "in ...

Aug 20, 2014

Recognition as special victims

Regarding the July 31 AP article “Last surviving crew member of Enola Gay dead at 93“: On Aug. 13, a Japanese scholar provided his take on the outcome of World War II in The New York Times. It was triggered by the attention given ...

Aug 20, 2014

Japan paid its Pacific War debt

I read recently in my hometown newspaper that Korean and Chinese officials were upset over Japanese officials visiting the shrine to Japan’s war dead. I know about the Pacific War; my father fought in it. He was a member of an underwater demolition team; ...

Aug 20, 2014

Help the 'Well Said' translations

I appreciate the Japanese-language learning columns included in The Japan Times, and read them almost every week. However, I feel that two aspects of the “Well Said” column need improvement. First, the bonus dialogues focus nearly every week on two men talking about dating ...

Aug 13, 2014

Surrender option unacceptable

In response to Aaron Tovish’s Aug. 10 letter, “Children’s deaths were senseless,” I respect the Peace Boat organization, but Tovish’s letter contains some indefensible and incredible historical revisionism about Japan’s surrender in World War II that reflects poorly on that organization’s political agenda. The ...

Aug 13, 2014

Ignorance putting us in danger

People sometimes say, “Ignorance is bliss.” It is true that innocent children who don’t know the despair of modern society seem to live a happy life. Nevertheless, we should stop being fatalistic and see the truth in society because, currently, our safety is being ...

Aug 13, 2014

Casting actresses in ethnic roles

In no way do I mean to criticize Philip Brasor’s Aug. 10 Media Mix column, “Critics get frank when it comes to Godzilla“; however, I have never quite understood the derision given to the movie “Memoirs of a Geisha” over the casting of Chinese ...

Aug 6, 2014

Let flexibility reign at university

The Aug. 3 editorial “More students opt for fifth year” gave me a chance to ponder the flexibility of university-level education in our society. In colleges and universities, generally speaking, there are too many required subjects for students, and students have to take so ...

Aug 6, 2014

A call to all cooks about tuna

Because of the over-fishing of one of our most amazing and tasty fish, bluefin tuna stocks have fallen to dangerously low levels. Its natural habitats, the North Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea, are being ruthlessly and, sometimes, illegally, exploited as the fish is ...