Japan Times subeditor having a sly dig?

I’ll probably write more this evening, but for now, I noticed the subheading on this month’s JBC reads:

Intellectual snobbery and an inability to work together are perennial problems


And now this evening’s input:

And we are seeing outdoor protest after protest, with ranks swelling to numbers not seen in decades.

Make that three years: 75,000 marching against nuclear power; organisers said 170,000, police reported 75,000, versus the recent protest managing 120,000 (organisers) versus 30,000 (police). (Incidentally, the Japan Times chose to cast doubt on these numbers with this badly- and weasely-worded paragraph: “Meanwhile, NHK, quoting unnamed police sources, reported the Metropolitan Police Department estimated that only 30,000 protesters gathered around the Diet. A police spokesman declined to comment when contacted by The Japan Times.”

Japan is a land that craves precedent

What? Where did that come from?

few dare display communist sympathies

Oh really? So why were the JCP the only party that made significant progress in the last election?

“Hey, the system worked for our ancestors in the past, right?”

Collective self-defence is a whole new ball-game with no precedent in Japan.

Whenever Japan harks to the past, an element of ancestor worship seeps in.


You see that even with WWII war criminals enshrined as heroes at public worship sites

You spelt “war-linked shrine” wrongly! :facepalm:

Then there’s the leftist ideological distaste for measuring everything in terms of money.

Where does that statement come from? Or is this a reference to Hatoyama’s (incidentally, the richest Diet Member when he was in the House) fantasy budget about how he was going to find zillions of yen in savings?

But the biggest disadvantage I see in Japan’s left is an intellectual snobbery.

Now, this is an area that I must admit Doctor Arudou PhD is an expert in.

Rightists intuitively understand that if something is to be a talking point, you have to put it in manga or anime form. Then you’ll reach even the most disaffected shut-in (who will then go online to terrorize a newfound foe). In comparison, leftists look more like doctrinaire fossils, sniffing at all this anti-intellectualism: “Who needs to tell lowbrow stories when we have abstract principles to adhere to?”

:roll: Furthermore, I recall the Western press going gaga over the JCP’s cute mascots at the last election.

But the right knows it needs as many people as possible parroting its talking points — for a fundamental maxim of propaganda is that if enough people say something, it becomes true.

So, how does leftist Diet Members repeating “War Bill” all the time fit into this analysis?

As a bonus, Toolonggone comments on the article:

It’s just so sad and mind-boggling to see these activists made a horrible choice to engage in killing sprees within their factions in course of challenging the state regime.

Maybe it’s just badly-phrased, but that seems to suggest that the horrible choice was to kill fellow activists instead of members of the state regime.

No doubt they gave Marxism a really bad name.


Leave a comment ?


  1. Dr. Aruzu Debeso

    damned microaggressors..

  2. 50 shades of Di Griz

    ‘I’ll probably write more this evening’

    Oh please do! I’m waiting with baited breath! And so is that other guy who reads this blog. :roll:

  3. If you stopped eating worms you could cure your baited breath. In the meantime, please enjoy my update!

  4. First, if you want to join their ranks, you must prove your ideological worth. I remember numerous times asking for assistance from leftist groups in the quest for equal rights for all. We were on the same page, yet their Young Turks grilled me about whether I had read this author or that book. Essentially, I had to pass an entrance exam — be demonstrably schooled in their canon and their lexicon — or else I would get no support.

    Why do I have this sneaking suspicion that that’s not quite what happened?

  5. This is probably why people asked him if he’d ever opened a political science book in his life:

    Since I advocate for minority rights here, I am simpatico with the left, given their comparative tendency to view people as individuals

    First off, “Simpatico” doesn’t mean “sympathetic”. It means “nice”. Second, what happened to that whole class struggle against the propaganda of individualism thing?

    But then he says:

    even though Japan’s appeal to historical collectivism would fit right into any commune).

    And then:

    And there the debate usually dies. Whenever Japan harks to the past, an element of ancestor worship seeps in. This stifles critical thinking, for insinuating that our forefathers were somehow wrong is to disrespectfully question the essence of Japanese identity.

    Which you can contrast with this:

    the right’s reflex of seeing people as groups that are ascribed characteristics from birth

    By the way, who is he talking about here?

    Even their xenophobes will enlist foreigners! Take a broke retired journalist, a redneck Net ignoramus or a paramilitary spook for hire, and just put their names on inflammatory Japanese publications in a language they can’t read anyway.

    I’m guessing one is Tony Moreno. Who are the others?

  6. @VK: They should run a reader competition on that!-)

  7. KT88 (cleverer than thou, snider than a cow)

    @50 shades of Di Griz:

    “bated breath”


  8. TIL: Hayao Miyazaki is a “rightist”.

    As, apparently, was Keiji Nakazawa.

    You know, it requires real effort to live somewhere for “decades” and still be as clueless about what is happening in the country of your chosen nationality as Debito is.

  9. 50 shades of Di Griz

    @KT88 (cleverer than thou, snider than a cow):

    No man! That was a *joke*! ‘Bait a trap’ coz I’m posting like a troll?

  10. 50 shades of Di Griz

    Speaking of trolls, I just saw that Ken posted this on JT;

    ‘Apparently, having two tax rates is too complicated is the official excuse, but this seems even more complicated to me. Indeed, I just finished doing a small online training course at work for My Number, and one item that was highlighted was that it will be illegal for companies (the examples were video shops and electrical superstores) to even request to see your My Number card, but now we’ll be expected to hand it over with our point cards!’

    Ken Y-N, criticizing the Japanese government, pointing out policy contradictions, and defending the right to privacy of information from any old J-gatekeeper? Ken’s a Japan bashing hater. KEN! If you hate it so much, why don’t you just go back to your own country!

  11. Just as a quick reminder, to myself as much as anyone else, no more feeding the trolls, please!

  12. @Orudo Debiru:

    :shock: Where was Miyazaki called a rightist?

  13. @VK: This had people defending him from the charge, even if it was not explicitly made. . .

  14. @VK: I was referring to this quote from the original column:

    Rightists intuitively understand that if something is to be a talking point, you have to put it in manga or anime form. Then you’ll reach even the most disaffected shut-in (who will then go online to terrorize a newfound foe). In comparison, leftists look more like doctrinaire fossils, sniffing at all this anti-intellectualism: “Who needs to tell lowbrow stories when we have abstract principles to adhere to?”

    If the “rightists” are the ones who put messages in anime and manga, while the “leftists” disdain “lowbrow stories”, then Hadashi no Gen, being a manga, would be rightist propaganda and therefore Keiji Nakazawa a rightist. And Miyazaki makes anime, right? He even made that one about the designer of the Zero! Obvious rightist.

    There are, of course, right-wing or conservative writers of animation and manga, but on the whole my impression is the field tends to attract more liberal types, as it does in pretty much any country I am familiar with. But I would not expect someone like Debito, who admitted in the past that he did not read Japanese for pleasure and who has shown a total ignorance of pretty much any reference to Japanese popular culture that has ever been thrown at him, to recognize that.

  15. Arudou was obviously talking about politicians, not about lefties/rightists in general.

  16. @Ken Y-N: Disagree. Arudou was talking about trumpeting his ignorance concerning the relative effectiveness of those on the left and right ends of the political spectrum to influence policy, while painting with his usual overly broad brush industrial-grade power roller.

    The column was not about “politicians only”.

  17. I probably age with you, but either he or one of his defenders would jump in and say it was only politicians, activists, etc that he was referring to.

  18. VK, I don’t think that word means what you think it means. I think it would be a stretch to describe Debito as having any sort of sympathies with the left, though. I think his unique blend of narcissistic selfishness and rampant stupidity is beyond left or right.

  19. Static.

    “Leftists” have an affinity for small fridges.
    “The Right” fear melted butter.
    “The Japanese” will not discuss scones.

    Yup, Arudou Debito, champion of individualism.

    All the political analysis finesse and insight of a high schooler from a generation ago.

    Reminds me of that episode where Homer goes to college and cannot quite grasp that it’s not really just a playing field for the jocks vs. the nerds.

  20. Why don’t you call this site the Debito Site’?

    The only time there seems to be traffic here, is when Debito posts one of his JT articles.

    Mike ‘ The Resume Artist’ Guest must be green with envy that his mediocre articles in the Daily Yomiuri pass without a whimper of comment on any sites.

    Get a life people, Debito has.

  21. No he hasn’t

  22. The irony of a visitor to a website telling other visitors to a web site to “get a life” is the sweetest of tears.

  23. 50 shades of Di Griz


    Troll :roll:

  24. @Varus:

    He got a life?

    “Having a life” usually includes having a job.

    Since academia apparently isn’t hiring in Waikiki, I think all that is left is part time work at an ABC shop or a hotel. And I hear they only hire people who can at least speak basic Japanese, so…

  25. Restacking books at the library is a job.

  26. Meanwhile Jake Adelstein tries to squeeze a few more yen for himself out of Fookooshimar:


    Note the complete lack of concern for the tens of thousands of people who would be incinerated along the way if the magical anti-nuclear homing lava moves fast enough to travel thirty miles up and over the mountains.

  27. And now for something completely different!


    Even though he briefly mentioned this idea once, I have always thought a certain activist could achieve a lot more if he took this approach, rather than insisting that people who don’t share his views should be persecuted by the law of the land.

    For your consideration.
    (What with typhoons, floods, earthquakes and volcanoes popping up all over the place, I though people could use a little distraction.) :smile:

  28. VK sounds like he’s envious of Jake’s success. Jakes’s now a special reporter for Bloomberg TV and CNN, and he’s being quoted in the Sunday Times too. VK better shut his mouth because the National Police Agency are on high alert, as Jake reports in CNN. Jake has a lot of police and mafia connections, and they can get to anybody, even here on Japologism. How would VK like to be a 9-fingered troll?


  29. @Jake-fan: TL;DR version: “Jake’s imaginary friend can beat up your imaginary friend!”

    Response to Jake:


  30. Ooh, is that the child-threatener?

  31. Ken, time to take out the trash again. It’s getting proper niffy in here.

  32. 50 shades of Di Griz

    @Simon: You mean ‘nippy’, right? :lol:

  33. In any case, I pretty much gave up right at the headline. The conveyor belt of death? Someone’s angling for a job with the Daily Mail.

  34. Ken on another phone

    @Sublight: Yes, it was so awful I couldn’t be bothered posting about it here! I think even Japan Focus would have rejected it.

  35. @Ken on another phone:

    I wouldn’t put it past them.

  36. 50 shades of Di Griz

    The ‘Conveyor Belt of Death’ needs a ‘My Number’ scanner at the register.
    Achtung Baby!

  37. @Sixth Sense: From the same mailing list, could this possibly explain why some people can’t fit in in Japan? Because they assume they can’t, and have no (accurate) point of reference to assess their actual success?


    Or is it Reality hitting them after the “Dunning-Kruger effect” – (is that the official title for the Charisma Man syndrome?)

  38. Before the comments got locked there was a cracking comment from tishto some debitard who was creaming himself about how China will destroy Japan’s economy with “one phone call”.

    I think the little simpleton has confused a Tom Clancy novel with real life.

  39. Dr. Aruzo Debeso

    They deleted almost half of the comments… Mentioning that Debito is living Hawaii, and not Japan? That’s a deletion… Asking the Japan Times to reconsider allowing Debito a platform to spread his bullshit from? That’s a deletion… Saying anything remotely critical about Debito? That’s a deletion too.

    However, the pro-Debito postings were all included – no matter how false, stupid, or bat-shit insane they were. The misinformed Debitard saying; “He lives here” – that’s still there (and upvoted twice!) – but anyone correcting him was censored.

    I wonder if that Tisho bloke and Di Griz are the same person, or are just cut from the same cloth?

  40. 50 shades of Di Griz

    @Dr. Aruzo Debeso:

    To be fair though, reading the same old ‘He’s not Japanese/he doesn’t live in Japan’ back and forth EVERY month is pretty tedious, don’t you think? After all, with all the material Debito gives us in the *actual column* to rip apart you’d think people would see that for richer pickings :facepalm:

  41. @50 shades of Di Griz: If anybody could be bothered to read it.

  42. 50 shades of Di Griz

    It just seems like such a waste :lol:

  43. Dr. Aruzo Debeso

    The Debitards are having a discussion about Shinto – claiming that it originates from Jewish traditions, and that Japan is one of the “lost tribes”… This Nichiyu Dosoron thing is laughable… surely the individuals commenting on Debito’s site are all trolls… must be…


    Also, ****DOCTOR**** Debito is doctoring his own wikipage again – he wants his new book included. :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm:

  44. In the wiki comments, the doctor included a link to amazon where you can pre-order the book. It is $107.25.

  45. Maybe that whole wikipedia page and its associated talk page should be linked to from the Narcissistic Personality Disorder page as some sort of case study. He has no shame! Absolutely no comprehension of how he might be perceived from outside of his own head. It is also slightly creepy/sinister reading some of the comments by his sockpuppet accounts now that it is known they were/are sockpuppets. I am amazed that, throughout, the most busy editors of that page (Curly Turky and Stradivarius?) seem to have assumed good faith on his part in spite of repeated evidence to the contrary.

    How very depressing, too, to see that someone appears to have given him another platform for his racist drivel, even if it is practically a vanity press: http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?290877-Lexington-Books

  46. Lexington Books is a solid C level academic publisher. Well respected nationally and internationally. Check their SENSE ranking. I don’t know about any editing fees but they’re definitely not vanity press.

  47. Dr. Aruzo Debeso

    Debito REALLY wants his latest book included on wiki. I hope that his future prospective employers see his wiki page talk section and see what sort of person he really is…

    Thanks for your feedback, everyone. Another question about this bit: If something “gets reviewed it merits mention in the article”. Does “reviewed” include “cited in a publication”? Thanks. Dr. ARUDOU, Debito (Talk) 03:20, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
    I doubt it. Curly Turkey 🍁 ¡gobble! 04:27, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
    Thanks. Why not? According to WP:NB, “A book is notable, and generally merits an article, if it verifiably meets through reliable sources, one or more of the following criteria: The book has been the subject[1] of two or more non-trivial[2] published works appearing in sources that are independent of the book itself.[3] This includes published works in all forms, such as newspaper articles, other books, television documentaries, bestseller lists,[4] and reviews. This excludes media re-prints of press releases, flap copy, or other publications where the author, its publisher, agent, or other self-interested parties advertise or speak about the book.[5]” That’s books, and that’s for creation of articles about the book in specific. My question is: How would one decide how to list “notable works” by a BLP of author? What about publications that get cited within published academic publications? Is there a threshold of citation numbers (similar to the threshold of two non-trivial published works)? I’m sorry to be persistent. Dr. ARUDOU, Debito (Talk) 06:28, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
    It’s hard to generalize. Please post a link to a page with information about the book, and links to any independent sources you know of that mention it. Johnuniq (talk) 07:12, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
    WP:NB is a guideline about which books deserve a stand-alone article, and which don’t. That’s not the same thing as deciding which books belong in a publications list in an article about their author. We use different rules for determining article content than we do for determining whether a topic is suitable for an article (see WP:NNC for more info). — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 13:02, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
    That’s a bit clearer now. Thanks everyone! Dr. ARUDOU, Debito (Talk) 18:31, 31 October 2015 (UTC)
    To add to Mr. Stradivarius’s comment, WP:WORKS is our style guide on lists of works. From that guideline: “Lists of published works should be included for authors, illustrators, photographers and other artists. The individual items in the list do not have to be sufficiently notable to merit their own separate articles.” VQuakr (talk) 20:30, 31 October 2015 (UTC)

  48. 50 shades of Di Griz

    @Dr. Aruzo Debeso: ‘What kind of person he is’? You mean, like, ‘the kind of person who copies and pastes lengthy tracts of text from wikipedia that are absolute goobledigook to anyone who isn’t a dedicated Arudo stalker’?

    Well done nerd-boy, nice own-goal :roll:

    Bring back Dolphins!!! :razz:

  49. The new JBC is out….

    You know, somebody ought to write a book.

    Well, guess what: Somebody has. Everything above is substantiated within my new academic textbook, “Embedded Racism: Japan’s Visible Minorities and Racial Discrimination” (Lexington Books), on sale in a few days.

  50. The comments section is right proper mental.


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