Read a little. Learn a lot. • Tightly-written news, views and stuff • Follow us on TwitterBe a Facebook FanTumble us!

14 Feb 2012 14:10


World: Japanese activists want referendum on nuclear power in Osaka

  • then Last year, following the violent earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan, the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor was thrown into a state of emergency. System failure prevented adequate cooling of enriched uranium rods, causing a meltdown while hydrogen explosions rocked the plant.
  • nowJust under a year removed from the disaster, a group of Japanese activists have submitted a petition in Osaka (within Kansai Prefecture), calling for a referendum on nuclear power. Osaka is Japan’s second largest city behind Tokyo, and draws power from 11 nuclear reactors near the city. source

12 Feb 2012 11:17


World: Japanese Emperor Akihito will undergo heart surgery next weekend

The Japanese monarch, 78, has reportedly had health issues of late, and as a result is up for his first surgery in nearly a decade after an examination showed worsening heart issues. He had surgery for prostate cancer in 2003. source

26 Dec 2011 20:49


World: Japan having a “mancession”: Women bringing home the bacon

  • 5.4% the percentage of men that were unemployed in Japan as of 2010
  • 4.6% the percentage of unemployed women; that’s a role-reversal source
  • » Tough cultural conditions to blame: With a high pay gap between female and male workers (females make less), a switch from traditional manufacturing to service industries, an aging population, a slowing birth rate, and a move among Japanese couples to marry later, Japan is quickly facing a bit of a cultural shift in terms of who has a job and who doesn’t. By 2020, estimates say, the number of unemployed men vs. unemployed women could become even more pronounced.

05 Dec 2011 11:30


World: Radioactive water leaks from Fukushima nuclear site

  • 45 metric tons of radioactive water got loose from Fukushima source
  • » How bad was it? The water leak was found Sunday on a device used to purify the seawater used to cool off damaged reactors. They stopped the leak by stacking sandbags against the concrete barrier surrounding the device. The water itself, authorities say, contained higher-than-usual levels of cesium 137, a radioactive substance. It’s not clear that any of this water made it to the Pacific Ocean. The reactor was greatly damaged during the March earthquake.

20 Sep 2011 18:04


World: Residents of central Japan advised to evacuate by typhoon warning

  • 1.3million people told to evacuate ahead of typhoon source
  • » Typhoon Roke approaches: The Japanese Meteorological Agency discovered the typhoon off the coast of southern Japan Tuesday evening, and they estimate it may reach Tokyo by Wednesday afternoon. The city of Nagoya, in particular, has suffered heavy rains and flooding as the typhoon charts its course, which the agency says brings winds at about 89 miles per hour.

07 Sep 2011 11:05


World: Ex-Japan PM Naoto Kan imagined uninhabitable Tokyo post-Fukushima

  • Deserted scenes of Tokyo without a single man around came across my mind. It really was a spine-chilling thought.
  • Former Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan • Offering a truly harrowing vision of a post-Fukushima future for Tokyo. The vision for the 20-million-strong city helped push Kan towards encouraging renewable energy during his final months as Prime Minister, when he was dealing with the march earthquake. We’re with him. That’s a scary thought and it’s understandable why he changed his track as a result. source

05 Sep 2011 23:46


World: Tropical Storm Talas rips through Japan, causes heavy damage

  • Workers in western Japan look for survivors: As of Monday night, 26 people have died from the storm and another 53 are missing. Officials have asked 440,000 people to evacuate, according to Japan’s Fire and Disaster Management Agency; over 5,400 homes have flooded already. Roughly 19,000 homes are without power. Talas is the worst cyclone to hit the country in the past seven years. (Photo via Jiji Press/AFP/Getty Images) source

29 Aug 2011 11:10


World: Meet Yoshihiko Noda, Japan’s likely new Prime Minister

Now here’s a guy that shouldn’t get too comfortable. Noda will likely be Japan’s sixth Prime Minister in five years, and the track record for keeping this job isn’t great. Plus, Fukushima’s still an issue. source

26 Aug 2011 13:23


World: As expected, Naoto Kan quits as Japanese Prime Minister

  • The earthquake sealed his political fate. A mere 14 months after he began, Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan has just ensured that Japan will see its sixth prime minister in five years — and he outlasted most of them. However, his weak leadership during the earthquake — which should’ve proved an opportunity for him prove how his work as a self-made man ensured he was the right man for the job, after years of weak choices. Instead, he turned out to be a weak leader, too. “Mr. Kan is the outsider-turned-prime minister, who should have provided leadership,” noted close friend and adviser Takayoshi Igarashi. “The move to escape from nuclear power should have been his great chance to shine.” Not so much. source

28 Jun 2011 17:52


Offbeat: Eguchi Aimi, fledging Japanese pop star, is computer generated

  • Somebody just lost their dream girl: We certainly wouldn’t fault any fans of Japanese pop group AKB48 if they’re feeling a bit sore or a bit duped. As the video above exposed last week, the sixth and newest member, Eguchi Aimi, doesn’t fit the job prerequisites for an “all-girl” band — she’s actually entirely computer generated. Her features were cobbled together from the faces of her flesh-and-blood partners — there’s something both cool and deeply disconcerting about this. source