Saturday, April 30, 2011

My government decides to torture me

On April 30, Jun Okumura responded to my comment on the Kan administration.
Mark: Whether you like it or not, that is the direction in which Japanese policies are trending long-term.
Immediately after I read this, I suddenly had a strong headache and I had to lie down. I believe my government gave me this headache in an attempt to torture me into submission. My government was trying to convince me to accept the policy direction of the Kan administration.

This will not stand.

Friday, April 29, 2011

The WTO Trade Negotiations Committee meets

In an effort to complete the Doha Round, the WTO Trade Negotiations Committee held an informal meeting. As far as I can tell, they made no progress.

I tell Jun Okumura that the Kan administration sucks

I wrote the following comment in response to the latest post on Global Talk 21.
I am very disappointed to hear that you think the Kan administration is not on its deathbed. I am very disappointed to hear that Kan still wants to raise the sales tax. I am very disappointed to hear that Kan does not understand the importance of the child allowance program. I am very disappointed to hear that Kan might soon neglect the rural parts of Japan. And I was very disappointed to hear that Kan still wants to implement the current Futenma relocation plan.


I posted the following article on Blogging for a New World Order.
In case you were wondering, the use of earthquakes for terrorist attacks didn't start in 2010. And the biggest attack was not the recent earthquake in Japan. It was the earthquake that hit Indonesia in 2004.

By the end of 2004, Indonesia and Japan had begun to consider negotiating a free trade agreement. I'm sure Europe and America did not look to kindly on that idea, as a free trade agreement between Japan and Indonesia would put their companies at a disadvantage compared to Japanese companies when doing business in Indonesia.

On December 16, Indonesia and Japan agreed to launch a joint study group to discuss the idea. On that very same day, America warned of a possible terrorist attack in Indonesia. Prior to that warning, Australia, Britain and New Zealand had also warned of a possible attack. This was their way of trying to convince Indonesia to not sign a free trade agreement with Japan. If you sign a free trade agreement with Japan, we will kill you.

On December 26, a magnitude 9.1 earthquake struck off the coast of Indonesia and killed over 230,000 people.

The study group held three rounds of meetings at the start of 2005 – on January 31, March 4, and April 11. If the study group decided that an agreement would benefit both countries, negotiations would begin. If not, there would be no agreement. Right before the final meeting, on March 28, a magnitude 8.7 earthquake struck offshore of Sumatra.

It's hard to say who caused these earthquakes. Obviously, America or Europe could have hit Indonesia in an attempt to persuade Indonesia into not signing an agreement. On the other hand, perhaps the talks between Japan and Indonesia were going poorly and Japan decided it needed to do something to convince Indonesia that it really needed a free trade agreement with Japan.
My government did not like this article. Today, TiVo shares fell 21 cents to $9.57. Vonage shares fell 4 cents to $5.16.

Timing is everything

After reading the latest post on Global Talk 21, I posted the following on Blogging for a New World Order.
A few days back, my government "told" me that I would have to write something on my blog on April 29, and what do you know, I have something to write on my blog. Isn't that interesting? What's more, two days ago, I thought that if Jun Okumura wrote something on his blog, I would respond to it. And what do you know? After not writing anything on his blog for over a month, he decided to write a new post. How very interesting.

Long live the Kan administration, says Jun Okumura

On April 29, in a new post on Global Talk 21, Jun Okumura argued that the Kan administration would survive, at least for a while. He also stated that the Kan administration wanted to scale back the child allowance program, reinstate the highway tolls, raise the sales tax to pay for social security, and scale back the agricultural subsidies program. Basically, Kan wanted to abandon the DPJ manifesto, much to the chagrin of Ichiro Ozawa.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

More Radicalized in the West

I posted the following article on Blogging for a New World Order.
In case I haven't convinced you that western universities are radicalizing foreign students and sending them back to their home country in an effort to screw up those countries, here's another list of people who have attended school in the west and have gone on to really jack things up.

Mostafa Chamran trained guerrillas in the Middle East and participated in the Iranian Revolution. He went to U.C. Berkeley.

Akbar Khan was a major general in the Pakistani army. The Times of London referred to Khan as “the man who started the Kashmir war on his own.” He went to Sandhurst.

Colonel Imam founded the Taliban. He graduated from Fort Bragg.

Benazir Bhutto served as the prime minister of Pakistan. She went to Harvard and Oxford. Pakistan created the Taliban during her reign. Her father, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, served as the President of Pakistan. His disastrous maneuvers catapulted Pakistan into a civil war which split Pakistan and created Bangladesh. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani is the current head of the Pakistani military. He also served as the head of Pakistani intelligence before that. He went to school at Fort Benning and Fort Leavenworth. By the way, it seems that Wikipedia removed this information from his biography recently. Interesting.

Saad Eddin Ibrahim is a member of the opposition in Egypt. He is affiliated with all sorts of U.S. Universities.

Muammar Gaddafi received army training in Britain. Moussa Koussa served under Gaddafi as the head of Libyan intelligence. He went to Michigan State University. Mahmoud Jibril leads the opposition in Libya. But before that, he actually served under Gaddafi. He went to the University of Pittsburgh.

Bashar al-Assad is the current president of Syria. He went to school in Britain.

Anwar al-Awlaki is a high ranking member of Al Qaeda. He went to Colorado State University.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Underwear Bomber, studied engineering at University College London.

Sibghatullah Mojaddedi is the leader of the Afghan National Liberation Front. The group was one of the Peshawar Seven, which fought against the Russians in the 80s. He went to school in Europe.

Cu Huy Ha Vu sued the Vietnamese prime minister over a bauxite mining project run by China. He got his law degree from the Sorbonne in Paris. I guess Europe doesn't want China doing anything in Vietnam.

Aung San Suu Kyi is the leader of the opposition in Burma. She thinks the West should continue to impose sanctions on her country because the IMF told her those sanctions don't hurt the Burmese people. She went to Oxford.

Syngman Rhee served as the president of South Korea during the Korea War. He went to Princeton.

Yosuke Matsuoka served as the Japanese foreign minister in the run up to World War II. He went to the University of Oregon. By the way, if you ever want to read a good book about Matsuoka and the run up to World War II and how he really screwed things up, read With Japan's Leaders, by Frederick Moore. It's too bad Obama did read that book before becoming president.

On November 25, David Ignatius wrote an article about America and declinism. In that article, he noted how many Asian went to Harvard bemoaned Sarah Palin for attacking that university.

“Be careful, Sarah Palin, when you trash the Ivy League,” said Ignatius. “This is a national-security issue.”

Unfortunately, by maintaining our current policies we're doing something much worse than declinism – we're doing crashism. I'll have more to say about this later.
In retrospect, this article didn’t make my government as upset as I thought it would. Today, Vonage shares dropped 7 cents to $5.18. TiVo shares dropped 5 cents to $9.67.

Monday, April 25, 2011

The Guantanamo Files - WikiLeaks

WikiLeaks began releasing classified documents on the detainees held at Guantanamo Bay on April 25, 2011.

Once again, WikiLeaks refused to release all the documents. In particular, I noticed that WikiLeaks refused to release the documents on two of the so-called high-value detainees held at Gitmo – Abdul Hadi al-Iraqi and Muhammad Rahim al-Afghani.

Later that year, at the beginning of September, I noticed that the WikiLeaks website had replaced its webpage on the Gitmo detainees with a message saying the site was undergoing maintenance. Perhaps WikiLeaks will finally do the right thing and release the remaining documents.

Friday, April 22, 2011

My government tells me about James M. Markham

Today, I was browsing through the articles on Salman Rushdie when I discovered this article entitled “Fallout Over Rushdie.” The New York Times published that article on August 10, 1989. The article was written by James M. Markham, the former bureau chief for the Times in Paris.

The article was fairly critical of the way Europe had treated its Muslims. According to Markham, Muslim immigrants lived at the “bottom of the economic order” in Europe. They often had to endure “prejudice and discrimination.”

“Even at the best of times, the relations between native Western Europeans and the roughly six million Muslims who live in their midst are difficult,” said Markham.

And then The Satanic Verses came along. That book, written by Salman Rushdie, caused a huge uproar, at least amongst certain Muslims in Europe. Some of them burned the book and threatened to kill Rushdie. But Markham had an interesting take on the story. According to him, the French television networks covered the protests in an unfair and biased manner.

“With close-up camera work, the smallish crowd suddenly seemed to represent a fanatic Islamic fifth column that had surfaced in France just as it is celebrating the 200th anniversary of its republican, anticlerical revolution,” said Markham. “The footage was shown again and again for several days.”

Of course, this made the moderate French Muslims angry.

“Even my most secular Muslim students feel attacked by the way Islam has been represented,” said Bruno Etienne, a French academic. “It would have been much easier to show the many French Muslims who favor the separation of church and state.”

But presumably, the media coverage had its desired effect, as the book burnings “antagonized” the white Europeans. Conservatives in both France and Germany used the book burnings to argue that immigrants were criminals. Jacques Chirac, then the mayor of Paris, said that France should expel any foreigner who threatened to kill Salman Rushdie.

In fact, though not saying it explicitly, Markham implied that the whole protest was nothing more than political theater. He noted that the protests against the Satanic Verses began in Britain, not Iran, which implied that Britain started the protest movement for their own reasons, presumably, to demonize Muslims. And, of course, many Muslims knew this and, according to Markham, that exacerbated the situation.

In INDB, I wrote the following in the notes for this article.1
As the comment suggests, on August 9, Markham died in Paris. The day after he died, the New York Times published his obituary. The Times said Markham died in Paris, “apparently of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.” The Times went on to say that Markham died only a month before he was scheduled to leave France and take up a new job at the Times in New York. The police did not find a suicide note. In INDB, I wrote the following in the notes for this article.1

1 I edited both comments slightly. The original comments, I fear, might draw the wrath of the Google censors. As a side note, later on, my government “told” me that they made me write the sentence “THIS IS BULLSHIT!!!” in both comments to signify to the Europeans that both the comments I wrote were bullshit. However, I think my government really does believe that the Europeans killed Markham. I think my government just had me write those sentences in an effort to placate the Europeans.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Next Move

I posted the following article on Blogging for a New World Order.
Things are going badly.

Afghanistan is a wreck. It’s probably not going to get better any time soon. The other day, Mike Mullen told Congress he expected another difficult year in Afghanistan. I don’t understand why Afghanistan is such a mess. It’s not in anyone’s interest for Afghanistan to be in such a sorry state.

Libya is a wreck. Both sides seem to be at a stalemate we created. We may end up partitioning yet another country. This would probably make Europe happy, but it certainly wouldn’t make Libya happy. Oil is now over $110 a barrel, mostly because of the situation in Libya.

The U.S. budget is a wreck. S&P recently threatened to downgrade our government.

The Mideast peace process is a wreck and our relationship with North Korea is a wreck, but I guess that’s nothing new.

Japan is a wreck. The current prime minister is worthless and no one seems to care. The recent earthquake was almost certainly man-made and was probably made by the Japanese government.

Apparently, there are several ways to create an earthquake. Drilling for hydrocarbons near fault lines can cause earthquakes. Detonating a nuclear weapon underground will also cause an earthquake.

The Japan Times certainly seemed to believe that many of the recent natural disasters have been man made. On December 31, the Japan Times wrote an article called “A year of living dangerously.” In that article, the Japan Times noted that while the number of deaths from armed conflicts had gone down, the number of deaths from natural disasters had skyrocketed.

“More than a quarter million people died as a result of natural disasters in 2010, making last year the most deadly in over a generation,” said the Japan Times. “More people were killed by natural disasters in 2010 than have been killed in terrorist attacks over the past four decades combined.”

Notice that the Japan Times seems to be equating the recent natural disasters with terrorism and remember that the newspaper called the article “A year of living dangerously.”

The Associated Press also seems to believe that many of the recent earthquakes have been acts of terrorism. On November 5, the Associated Press wrote an article called, “Earthquakes dog Clinton on overseas trips.”

“What is it about Hillary Rodham Clinton and earthquakes?” asked the Associated Press. “It seems the secretary of state rarely takes an overseas trip that is not in some way affected by a temblor.”

Hillary Clinton experienced five earthquakes during her overseas travel. She experienced earthquakes while traveling to New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Japan, Honduras, and Pakistan. Earthquakes affected her overseas trips in other ways too. The big earthquake in Haiti short circuited her trip to New Zealand while the big earthquake in Chile happened right before her visit to that country.

In fact, during 2010, it seemed that in one way or another, an earthquake affected just about every single trip she made to the Asia Pacific region. Taken at face value, it seemed like Europe was trying to convince her not to go to that region.

By the way, on the same day that the Associated Press ran that story, President Obama left for a ten day trip to East Asia. The Associated Press probably hoped that article would restrain foreign countries from creating an earthquake during that trip. Basically, the Associated Press was threatening to reveal the truth behind the recent earthquakes. Hopefully, that might deter others from carrying out such acts. If you believe you’re going to be exposed, you probably won’t commit a crime.

Most likely, Japan created its recent earthquake for several reasons. The earthquake will probably boost the Japanese economy, as it would lead to a lot of new construction projects. In fact, during the recent financial crisis, Japan seemed to dare the West to create an earthquake in Tokyo. On November 12, 2008, Toshizo Ido, the governor of Hyogo, said that a big earthquake in Tokyo would be an opportunity to boost the Japanese economy.

The earthquake will also likely have the effect of distributing development in Japan more broadly, as companies realize that concentrating all their operations in one area – the Tokyo / Osaka corridor – might not be such a good idea.

Households might increase their purchases of solar cells and batteries, in an effort to mitigate the effects of the blackouts and to prepare for any future earthquakes.

The earthquake may also provide Japan with an excuse for exiting the Kyoto Protocol. With nuclear power now in retreat in Japan, Japan has a good excuse for not meeting its CO2 emissions targets.

And Japan might want to use the earthquake as a threat. Thus far, I haven’t had much success in getting my message out. However, Japan might want other governments to worry that the current situation might soon change and it could use the earthquake to threaten to do just that, though I doubt they would follow through on that threat. Here’s how Japan can use the earthquake to threaten other countries. It turns out that my father worked on the design of the cooling system for the Fukushima 1 reactor several decades ago. I’m thinking that – given what has been happening to me – this can’t be a coincidence. In fact, after the earthquake, my government “told” me that they might call my father to testify before Congress on the situation with the reactor. Were some enterprising reporter to find out about me, that might provide a spotlight for what I’ve written. However, I think this is just a threat and not likely to happen.

But something needs to happen, hopefully soon.

I’m still working on trying to get the word out, but right now, I’m not getting enough done. I’ve been feeling tired but I haven’t been sleeping well. I’ve been too tired to do anything but not tired enough to sleep. I’ve had a bunch of stupid songs stuck in my head which has made it hard to concentrate.

My father wants me to see a doctor. I’m not sure that’s a good idea. I would need to tell him about what has been happening to me and he would need to believe me. Otherwise, I think he’ll end up prescribing me some medication that won’t fix anything. A few years back, one of my former coworkers had some of the same symptoms that I have been experiencing. He also couldn’t sleep and he had a hard time concentrating because he had songs stuck in his head. The doctor gave him sleeping pills and antidepressants. Not only did they not seem to work, in the case of the antidepressants, I think they seemed to make things worse.

Besides, I am feeling better than I was a couple of months ago. Back then, I think my government was trying to drug me into submission. Apparently, they got that idea from Charles Krauthammer. Back in December, Krauthammer wrote an article about WikiLeaks in which he argued that our government should try to threaten and intimidate anyone who tries to tell the truth about our government.

“Want to prevent this from happening again?” asked Krauthammer. “Let the world see a man who can’t sleep in the same bed on consecutive nights, who fears the long arm of American justice. I’m not advocating that we bring out of retirement the KGB proxy who, on a London street, killed a Bulgarian dissident with a poisoned umbrella tip. But it would be nice if people like Assange were made to worry every time they go out in the rain.”

That’s our media for you.

Aside from seeing a doctor, I have a few other options. I could confront my neighbors who I believe are poisoning me, I could go to the police, or I could move.

I doubt that moving would work, as I’ve lived in give different places in the past few years and I’ve had problems in each of them. I don’t trust the police and I don’t think they’ll believe what I have to say. I’m not sure how I would confront my neighbors and I’m not sure what good that would do. I’m sure they’d just deny

If anyone has any suggestions on what I should do, you know where to reach me.

The problems we had in Iraq, the problems we are having in Afghanistan, the problems we are having in Libya, the problems we are having with Japan, China, and East Asia in general are all rooted in the fact that our government lacks decency and integrity and can get away with what it does because no one has blown the whistle on them. Our bad behavior sets off a series of reprisals from other countries and in the end, everyone is poorer off. I’m not sure why no one seems to understand this.

Towards the end of that Japan Times article, the newspaper commented on the situation with WikiLeaks.

“The WikiLeaks drama of recent weeks is the first in what is certain to be a flood of humiliations of government leaders and officials,” said the Japan Times.

I can’t wait.
The day after I wrote this, TiVo shares plummeted 72 cents to $10.12. But on the other hand, Vonage shares jumped 23 cents to $4.95. Presumably, that was because the yuan tumbled that day, dropping an inconceivable .0333 to 6.492. That must have made my government happy.

On the surface, it appears that my article scared China to strengthening the yuan. In reality, China rewarded America for allowing me to write this article. And America simultaneously rewarded and punished me for writing this article. Of course, the net effect was negative, but presumably, it would have been worse had China not made that move on the yuan.

TiVo soars on ruling in Dish Network case

The U.S. Court of Appeals issued a ruling in the ongoing legal dispute between TiVo and EchoStar. The court agreed that EchoStar had failed to comply with a court order which demanded that the company shutdown their DVRs. Shares of TiVo rose $2.47 to $10.84.

Vonage shares also did well today, rising 23 cents to $4.95.

Like I said earlier, my government must have been really happy that I failed to convince my parents that my government was doing something to me.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Parents complete their fourth trip to Las Vegas

Vonage and TiVo shares continued their decline. Vonage shares dropped 7 cents to $4.72 while TiVo shares dropped 26 cents to $8.37. My government must have been trying to convince me not to say anything to my parents.

After seeing me for four days, my parents drove back to Los Angeles to see my brother. During this trip, we didn’t talk too much about what was happening to me. This must have made my government happy because shares of Vonage and TiVo would soar the day after they left.

Monday, April 18, 2011

A Better Future

I posted the following article on Blogging for a New World Order.
On April 17, the Asahi Shimbun published an article called, “Japan must reinvent itself and surprise the world once again.” According to the Asahi Shimbun, traumatic events like World War II and the end of the Tokugawa Shogunate led to the rebirth of Japan.

“A time of chaos is also a time of new awakening,” said the Asahi Shimbun. “I hope our country will surprise the world once again.”

I hope so too. But right now, it seems like Japan is just using the threat of change to gain leverage over other countries. Rather than using the earthquake to create a better world, Japan seems to be using the earthquake to advance its own interests. Rather than recreating itself, Japan seems to be up to its same old tricks. As things stand right now, those 20,000 people died in vain.

If Japan chooses to recreate itself, I hope the new Japan is founded on the ideals of transparency, integrity, truth, and accountability. Those ideals are in short supply these days and are badly needed.

Japan can start on a new path by removing Naoto Kan and replacing him with Ichiro Ozawa. And Japan can create a new world by telling the world the truth.
Later that day, TiVo shares would decline by a penny while Vonage shares would plummet 21 cents to $4.78. Surprise, surprise. Look who doesn’t want Japan to reinvent herself.

We’ll see whose vision prevails.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

America's elites have a duty to the rest of us

“The American ruling class is failing us — and itself,” said E.J. Dionne Jr.

If he had more integrity, he would have including himself in that statement.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

My parents arrive in Las Vegas for their fourth visit

My parents arrived in Las Vegas.

Japan must reinvent itself and surprise the world once again

On April 16, 2011, the Asahi Shimbun published an editorial called “Japan must reinvent itself and surprise the world once again.”

“Cataclysms like opening to the rest of the world in the 19th century and defeat in World War II gave birth to entirely new Japans,” said the Asahi Shimbun. “A time of chaos is also a time of new awakening … I hope our country will surprise the world once again.”

Were Japan to dump its politicians, tell the world the truth, and deal with the world on an honest basis, that would certainly surprise the world and fundamentally change Japan. Unfortunately, Japan has not done that and it appears the Asahi Shimbun merely wrote this article to scare other governments into believing that Japan might actually change.


Friday, April 15, 2011

No way to run a government

The Japan Times pilloried the U.S. government for the way it handled the 2011 budget. The newspaper excoriated Congress for not cutting the deficit enough, referring to the amount of cuts as “a drop in the proverbial bucket of red ink that is drowning the U.S. economy.”

According to the newspaper, the Democrats and Republicans were engaged in a game of “chicken,” where one side would dare the other side to do something “stupid and dangerous.”

“This ‘consequences be damned’ hostage-taking bodes ill for the ability of the U.S. to lead, a notion that it takes seriously,” said the Japan Times. “It is the height of irresponsibility. It is certainly no way to govern.”

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Two suspected French militants arrested in Pakistan

According to Reuters, about two months ago, Pakistan arrested two Frenchmen, Sharaf Din and Zohaib Afzal. The suspects had traveled to Pakistan for militant training. They have links to Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan.

This is further evidence that the West, in this case France, is radicalizing its Muslims and sending them to Pakistan and Afghanistan.

This will not stand.

Handouts to be abolished to free up funds for quake reconstruction

After Japan discovered that Congress had not cut the budget deficit at all, and with the DPJ too wimpy to stand up to America and simply reduce the amount of U.S. bonds they purchase, Japan could no longer afford to maintain the child allowance system and pay for the disaster reconstruction costs.

Today, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported that the DPJ would repeal the child allowance system in October.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Budget pact barely touches current-year deficit

Today, we found out why Congress chose to release the details of its “budget cuts” at 2:00 AM in the morning, four days after they reached an agreement.

The Congressional Budget Office reported that, contrary to what our politicians had claimed, the budget agreement only reduced the deficit by $352 million this year.

Ivory Coast Violence Damps Prospect of Quick Recovery After Civil War Ends

“Sporadic gunfire and reports of looting in the commercial capital of Ivory Coast damped hopes of a quick recovery in the world’s top cocoa producer after four months of deadly post-election conflict,” said Bloomberg News.

Uprisings triggered by western intelligence agencies: the gift that keeps on giving.

Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

I posted the following article on Blogging for a New World Order.
On April 12, Britain said its inflation rate dropped from 4.4% in February to 4.0% in March. Reuters said that inflation report reduced the likelihood that the Bank of England would raise its interest rate in May. BNP Paribas agreed with that assessment and changed its opinion on when the Bank of England would raise rates. Previously, BNP Paribas had thought Britain would raise interest rates in May. Now, BNP Paribas believed Britain would raise its interest rate in August.

I think that’s there little to no chance that British inflation declined in March. Commodities prices have been skyrocketing. Inflation does not go down when that happens. More likely, Britain did what the West often accuses China of doing – it fudged the data to its liking because it did not want to raise interest rates.

Of course, the West is harping on China to raise its interest rates, despite the fact that its rate of inflation is not that much higher than the rate of inflation in Britain. However, the interest rate in China is 6.25% and the interest rate in Britain is .5%. To be fair, the interest rate in China is the one year loan rate while the British interest rate is the overnight rate. Nevertheless, Britain is maintaining a huge negative real interest rate while the Chinese interest rate is positive. Furthermore, wages and prices in China are much lower than in Britain, meaning that China can easily withstand a higher rate of inflation. On the other hand, Britain, being a developed country, has much higher wages and prices, meaning that it really can’t afford to have a high rate of inflation or else its economy won’t be competitive. And in fact, its economy is suffering a significant competitiveness problem. Britain has a current account deficit. On the other hand, China has a large current account surplus which means, once again, China can withstand a higher rate of inflation and not run into problems.

Basically, Britain is doing what it does best – it is being hypocritical. It does not want to raise interest rates because that would hurt its economy and it wants China to raise interest rates because that would hurt the Chinese economy. That’s just the kind of country Britain is.
Interestingly, it appears my government boosted the share prices of TiVo and Vonage in response to this article. On this day, Vonage shares rose 13 cents to $4.78 while TiVo shares rose 33 cents to $8.86.

My government has “told” me that they liked this article because the article almost exclusively attacks Britain, as opposed to America. This would become a trend. My articles which attacked foreign countries went over much better with my government than the articles I wrote which attacked my own country.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Portugal starts bailout talks

Reuters reported that Portugal had begun bailout negotiations with the IMF, the ECB, and the European Commission. Portugal needed a loan of up to 80 billion euros by June or else she would run out of money.

Iran asks EU not to support "terrorist" groups

Iran asked Europe to stop supporting terrorist groups.


You think Europe will stop using terrorists to kill poor people just because you ask them to do it?!?!?!?!?!


This is the most ridiculous idea in the history of the universe!!!

The only solution is to discredit and marginalize Europe as a global actor.

History ends here.

Mubarak Hospitalized in Egypt

The New York Times reported that Hosni Mubarak had been hospitalized. The cause of his illness had not been released. Let me take a stab at that one. In an effort to prevent Mubarak from revealing the truth, the West poisoned him in an effort to incapacitate him.

This will not stand.

Pray. Hope. Prepare.

“Without extraordinary leadership, the Arab transitions are going to be much harder than in Eastern Europe,” said Tom Friedman. “Pray for Germanys. Hope for South Africas. Prepare for Yugoslavias.”

Kashmir will remain a problem

“Given the turmoil that has been in Pakistan for the past couple of years, it’s hard to imagine that the fragile governance in Islamabad is going to rise to a level where the impasse can be broken in the near term,” said U.S. Admiral Robert Willard.

Another strike for political theater, republicanism, and having your leaders educated in the West. We’ll see how long this system of government lasts.

Budget fights are a lose-lose proposition

“Sadly, much of the public discourse that surrounds our budget debate ranges from politically naive to economically moronic, with the fault to be laid at the feet of politicians who simply refuse to lead,” said Steven Pearlstein.

In his article, Pearlstein also said that the American political system was in “the political equivalent of trench warfare,” that the stalemate would probably continue for years, and that our politicians would fail to reach a satisfying solution.

Monday, April 11, 2011

House Panel Releases Budget Summary

Although our government “completed” a budget agreement on April 8, they didn’t release the details of that budget until today, April 12 at 2:00 AM in the morning. Apparently, they were waiting for a time when they thought no one would be paying attention.

Leader's Arrest in Ivory Coast Ends Standoff

Airstrikes conducted by France and the UN lead to the capture of Laurent Gbagbo. In the four month civil war, hundreds of people died. The economic sanctions imposed by America and Europe crippled the economy of the Ivory Coast.

Another economy trashed. More people killed. Mission accomplished, as far as France is concerned.

This will not stand.

Egypt Sentences Blogger to 3 Years

Egypt sentenced a blogger, Maikel Nabil, to 3 years in jail for criticizing the military.

Ah, chenji. Isn’t it great?

Times of Upheaval

The New York Times published an op-ed written by Roger Cohen called “Times of Upheaval” on April 11, 2011. In the article, he compared aging to a staircase.

“You go along heedless for a while with nothing appearing to shift and then, oops, you find you’ve gone down another step and the exit is closer than the entrance,” said Cohen.

He went on to say that “The staircase principle works for peoples as well as individuals” and he argued that, in the Arab world “the dike has broken. Another generation must have its say.”

Cohen believed everything would work out in the end, “even in times when the world is a ‘pregnant widow,’ one order gone and another not yet born.”

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Until the next US budget impasse

“As a rehearsal for the more important debate over the US government’s statutory debt limit, last week’s struggle over current-year public spending was dispiriting,” said the Financial Times.

A debt disaster behind a comic book budget squabble

Clive Crook referred to the 2011 budget fiasco as “theater” and said people laughed and yawned after Obama said, “Americans of different beliefs came together again.”

3/11 and 9/11

“Japan has never experienced an ordeal like the Great East Japan Earthquake before,” said the Yomiuri Shimbun. “Some people say the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks transformed the world view of the United States. But the impact and ramifications touched off by Japan's March 11 disaster could be even more profound than those of the Sept. 11 attacks.”

The President Is Missing

“What happened to the inspirational figure his supporters thought they elected?” asked Paul Krugman. “Who is this bland, timid guy who doesn’t seem to stand for anything in particular?”

“The nation needs a president who believes in something, and is willing to take a stand. And that’s not what we’re seeing.”

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Around and Around and Around and Never Forward

I posted an article called “Around and Around and Around and Never Forward” on Blogging for a New World Order. The following is a copy of that article.
On April 7, Hyun In-taek, the South Korean Unification Minister, said the recent earthquake in Japan and the unrest in the Middle East had increased the importance reunifying the Korean peninsula.

“The peaceful reunification of Korea and the process to reach it will not only bring the two Koreas together, but also create a new peace structure of regional stability and prosperity,” he said.

Hyun also said that everyone needed to agree on a process to realize reunification, noting that China wanted to resume the six party talks while America and South Korea wanted North Korea to apologize before negotiations restarted. Basically, if everyone has a different idea on how things should proceed, nothing happens.

The next day, on April 8, the Russian, American, and Japanese Ambassadors to South Korea held a symposium on reunification, and guess what, they all said they were for it. Based on what has happened for the past 60 odd years that seems unlikely.

The existence of North Korea gives America an excuse for maintaining its military forces in the region. Everyone likes this. As long as American military forces are stationed in the region, Japan can keep its military spending low. China likes it because, without North Korea, American forces might still be in the region and then they would be there to defend against China. What’s more, American forces might even be stationed in what is now North Korea, which would be right on China’s border. America likes it because it allows America to retain influence in the region. It also allows America to make some money, as Japan pays for the stationing of American troops on its soil. In fact, unless I’ve completely lost it, I believe that Paul Wolfowitz even said that reunification of the Korean peninsula was not in America’s interests. For some reason, I can’t find the citation on that, however.

There is another, less well known reason why East Asia likes the current situation. China, South Korea, and Japan, while pretending to be enemies of North Korea, are in fact its allies. And whenever America does something that those countries don’t like, North Korea has a way of doing something that America doesn’t like. For example, in 1968, North Korea seized the USS Pueblo, which it still has.

It is a shame that North Korea and South Korea are still split. At a time when East Asia has undergone unprecedented growth, North Korea remains behind, the only country in East Asia not making progress (except perhaps Burma). It is a shame that other countries, in particular America, continue to cling to a divided Korean peninsula. After all, America is responsible for much of the pain and agony that has occurred on that peninsula, including the Korean War.

In 1988, Thames Television, a British television network, aired a documentary called, “Korea: The Unknown War.” The documentary ended with a quote by Chong-sik Lee.

“Neither North or South Korea can be said to have won the war because the destruction was too heavy,” said Lee. “The human and material cost was overwhelming. China did intervene but they suffered greatly in terms of human resources. They had to delay their modernization efforts considerably. China’s relations with the United States deteriorated considerably. It had a very large impact on China’s future. The United States was not a victor. It suffered greatly in terms of material and human lives. The only one who I can see who has won the war, who has benefited from the war was Japan.”

Of course, the fact that Britain produced this documentary at the height of Japan-phobia should make everyone suspicious. The Japanese economy did benefit from the war because America allowed it to. But then the question is why did America allow the Japanese economy to benefit from the war? And the answer is: because America rewarded Japan for making the war.

Japan annexed Korea in 1910. With that annexation, Japan obviously gained an enormous amount influence in the Korean peninsula. After World War II, America wanted to rid the Korean peninsula of that influence and used the Korean War to do that, or at least try to do that. America needed to kill all those collaborators, and what better way to do that than to split a country, install two different systems of government on each side, install two leaders hell bent on reunifying the peninsula, and have them both go at it.

During the war, America dropped 635,000 tons of bombs on Korea, which is more than it used in the Pacific theater during World War II. Of course, America conducted its largest massacres at the places where Japan occupied Korea before the war.

As I noted in one of my earlier posts, American historians often rate Harry Truman as one of the best American presidents. That shows you what kind of people our historians are.

You may be wondering why, if America and Japan don’t want to change, don’t want to tell the truth, why do they keep pretending like they do? By the way, the same could be said of Europe as well. Each side recognizes that the truth would be devastating to its interests, but they realize that the truth would be devastating to the other side’s interests as well. That’s why everyone keeps pretending like they will soon tell the truth. They are using the truth as leverage against other countries. Of course, the truth never reaches the public and therefore what has been said has little value. But the threat sure is scary.

For my part, I still believe that the Internet changes everything. I still believe that one person can write one story and, if enough people read that story, a new world will be born. That is my hope and that is what I am trying to do.
I should have added a few more things to this article. I forgot to mention that the leader of South Korea during the war, Syngman Rhee, is yet another leader who was radicalized by the West (he went to Harvard). I also should have included the following video, which shows how the front line changed during the war.

You can see that the front line moved from the middle of the peninsula, to the bottom of the peninsula, up to the top of the peninsula, and then returned to where the war began. I do not believe this happened accidentally. I believe that we wanted the front line to pass through every single town and village in Korea. I believe we wanted to wipe out every single person who might have been sympathetic to Japan before or during World War II. In order to do that, we needed to make the war pass through every single inch of the Korean peninsula.

Around the time of the 60th anniversary of the start of the war, the New York Times published an article in which a Korean said something like, “I think America had its own reasons for fighting the Korean War.”

I can’t find that article on the New York Times website anymore. I wonder why.

Next on the Agenda for Washington: Fight Over Debt

According to the New York Times, with the 2011 budget finally enacted, Congress would now move on to an even bigger fight – the fight over the debt ceiling. The Tea Party would refuse to raise the debt ceiling unless the Democrats agreed to reduce government spending. Unless both sides reached an agreement, the U.S. government would default on its debt. Financial markets would crumble. Depression would ensue. Etc., etc.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Shutdown averted

An hour before the government would have to shutdown, Congress reached an agreement to avoid disaster. Congress agreed to cut the budget by $38.5 billion. Unless I am mistaken, this number includes the $10 billion in cuts that Congress already enacted.

Before they announced this deal, my government “told” me that if I wanted the public to know the truth, I should oppose the deal and hope that Congress shuts down the government. I thought this was ridiculous. Shutting down the government shouldn’t lead to anything except a damaged economy. In retrospect, my government seems to be arguing that shutting down the government would have enraged Japan. And in response, Japan would have told the world the truth about what was happening. If I knew that Japan would have acted in such a manner, I would have supported shutting down the government. But I still question whether this scenario was a real possibility.

Clock ticks down to government shutdown

“We know the whole world is watching us today,” said Harry Reid.

A bankrupt nation wakes up

“The story of the past half century is that Americans found a way to extract money from future generations and leave them with the bill,” said Christopher Caldwell. “What they have been enjoying is not prosperity but luxury. As Mr Ryan sees, they face the serious and open question of whether they are morally capable, over the long term, of living within their means.”


Japan scales back child subsidy program

The Washington Post reported that the DPJ might soon repeal the child allowance and use the money to recover from the earthquake.

“I think it’s a bad idea that they’re going to quit this,” Harumi Arima said. “I actually thought this policy had a level of vision — an idea for what they wanted Japan to look like in the future.”

“In this atmosphere, you can’t complain, because everybody wants to help with the earthquake,” said Chizuko Okuyama. “But at the same time my feeling is, they’re taking money from children.”

Shutdown Day

“The absurdity of the current moment in U.S. politics is truly astounding,” said Joe Klein.

Shutdown theatrics

The Washington Post published an op-ed written by Dana Milbank on the recently averted government shutdown. He said that both the Democrats and the Republicans participated in a “needless and reckless game of shutdown chicken.” He accused our politicians of going to “DefCon1” over “a fraction of 1 percent of the federal budget.”

“Even in a town known for its kabuki theater, this one takes the kimono,” said Milbank.

Climate change talks in Bangkok end with little headway

The climate change negotiations in Bangkok ended today. The negotiations accomplished nothing.


Bow down, Europe. Bow down.

The fight just gets dumber

“Let’s hope children aren’t watching C-SPAN these days,” said CNN. “Lawmakers are behaving in ways that would earn them a time-out if they were in kindergarten.”

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Running out of time

Obama met with Congress again. They failed to come up with an agreement again. According to Boehner, both sides had drifted further away from each other today.

Apparently, there was a new sticking point. The Republicans wanted to bar the government from funding Planned Parenthood. The Democrats objected to this idea. Some were incredulous.

“It’s hard to believe that they’re going to shut down the government because they can’t get a vote on family planning and Planned Parenthood,” said Dick Durbin. “Honest to goodness, was that what the last election was about?”

The Planned Parenthood issue, however, was not the only problem.

“There are far more than the one provision that is holding up any agreement, I can tell you that,” said Boehner.

“I’m not very optimistic,” said Harry Reid.

This time my government sticks up for Britain. Well...maybe.

Today, TiVo shares fell 24 cents to $8.80. Vonage shares were basically flat (they actually rose 1 cent to $4.57). Apparently, this time, my government was angry with me because I attacked Britain. Either that or they were angry because I accused them of screwing up Libya.

The first school shooting in Brazil

This morning, at Tasso da Silveira Municipal School, a former pupil, 23-year-old Wellington Oliveira, walked into an eighth grade classroom carrying a .38 caliber and a .32 caliber revolver. He killed 13 people, including himself. This was the first school massacre in the history of Brazil.

The shooting occurred just days before the President of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff, flew to China for a six-day visit. This was not a coincidence. This was another example of the “price tag” strategy employed by Europe and America. During her trip to China, Rousseff signed about 20 trade agreements worth $1 billion. I am sure this made the West very angry, angry enough to kill somebody.

This will not stand.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Are David Cameron and Esther Dyson Related?

I posted the following article on Blogging for a New World Order.
During his trip to Pakistan, David Cameron gave this excuse for, apparently, wanting America to fix the mess made by Britain.

“I don’t want to try to insert Britain in some leading role where, as with so many of the world’s problems, we are responsible for the issue in the first place,” said Cameron.

If you made the mess, shouldn’t you be responsible for cleaning it up? To be fair, America and France have also been making a mess of things – with Britain’s help (e.g. Libya).

The rest of Britain seemed to hate Cameron’s sudden outburst of honesty.

“To say that Britain is a cause of many of the world’s ills is naïve,” said Tristram Hunt. “To look back 50-odd years for the problems facing many post-colonial nations adds little to the understanding of the problems they face.”

And guess what? Tristram Hunt is a historian. A historian who doesn’t think people need to know history to understand the current events. This is my new favorite most ridiculous statement of all time.

As far as I can tell, Cameron did not go into any detail on what Britain did to screw things up. That makes his statement not very useful, except for perhaps making people in Pakistan feel better. Unfortunately, as I noted earlier, Britain and its buddies seem more determined than ever to screw things up which makes his apology look all the more insincere. Cameron reminds me of Esther Dyson (see my earlier post), a person who tries to convince people that they are on the right side when they have no intention of doing the right thing.

My government is somewhat angry with me

Vonage shares lost 18 cents to $4.56. TiVo shares were basically flat (they actually gained 2 cents to $9.04). Apparently, my government didn’t like the article I posted yesterday night.

Back on March 16, the dollar had bottomed at 78.25 yen. Since then, the dollar strengthened sharply. Today, the dollar hit a peak against the yen at 85.4 yen. After today, the dollar would decline sharply, hitting a low of 80.2 yen on May 5.

Arab unrest makes Israeli-Palestinian peace harder, Netanyahu says

In an interview, Netanyahu told the Washington Post that the Jasmine Revolution had made the peace process harder. Excuses, excuses, excuses.

Trash till the end.

The budget impasse continues

Obama continued to fight with Boehner over the budget. Boehner said he liked Obama personally. However, on the other hand, Boehner blamed Obama for the impasse, claiming that Obama was not leading.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Suspicious Deaths

I posted the following article on Blogging for a New World Order.
Over the past year or two, I have been amazed at the number of deaths of influential people (for a list of names you can look through the files I’ve uploaded). The deaths seemed to come in waves and they often coincided with the points in time when it seemed like our government might tell the truth. I have often thought that some of those deaths were assassinations to prevent those people from telling the truth. I never had any evidence to back up this idea, until yesterday when the Associated Press reported that Germany had opened an investigation into the death of Samuel Kunz, a former Nazi. It had originally been reported that Kunz had died of natural causes but a lawyer doubted that determination and requested an autopsy. Presumably, the results of that autopsy led Germany to open an investigation into Kunz’s death. Germany said it would not release the results of the autopsy until it finished the investigation. Kunz died on November 22, 2010, right before he was scheduled to testify at his trial.

The Republicans want $7 billion more

During a meeting, Boehner told Obama that his party wanted another $7 billion in budget cuts. That didn’t go over well.

Monday, April 4, 2011

A whole lot of nothing

On Monday, TiVo shares lost 3 cents to $9.13. Vonage shares rose 8 cents to $4.73. I guess my government had no strong opinion about the article I wrote on Saturday. The article contained no secret information. And I insulted a British historian. No need to get all worked up over that, I guess.

Geithner: U.S. will reach debt limit by May 16

Tim Geithner told Congress that the government would reach its debt ceiling no later than May 16. Previously, he estimated that the government would hit the ceiling at some point between April 15 and May 31. If Congress fails to raise the debt ceiling by May 16, the Treasury would employ a series of “extraordinary measures” to prevent a default.1 That would buy Congress another eight weeks, give or take.

1 I believe these “extraordinary measures” are otherwise known as “ignore the law because the real date doesn’t match our political theater schedule.”

In a Reversal, Military Trials for 9/11 Cases

Eric Holder announced that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed would be tried in a military tribunal. Europe must have been happy with this decision. Presumably, in a military tribunal, all their dirty secrets would remain hidden from the public (as would ours).

This will not stand.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Jun Okumura responds to someone, perhaps himself

On April 3, Jun Okumura responded to the anonymous comment about Naoto Kan.

I think that he is what he was. In the 90s, he pushed against the establishment as Health and Welfare Minister and gave the go-ahead to the DPJ policy wonks to cooperate with their LDP counterparts to contain the Asian financial crisis. But he seems to have all the wrong instincts for a “Commander-in-Chief.”

You never know how someone will do in the test of his/her lifetime. I think he lasts until the 2012 DPJ leadership election, but not until the next lower house general election.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Historians Never Cease To Dismay Me

I posted the following article on Blogging for a New World Order.
On March 30, Timothy Garton Ash wrote an article expounding on the moral dilemma associated with leaking classified information. He argued that the helicopter video should have been leaked but the details of the negotiations between Israel and Palestine should not have been leaked. Of course, I agree that the helicopter video should have been leaked but the documents on Israel and Palestine should have been leaked as well. As for his justification on why those documents should not have been leaked, Ash had this to say.

“How else can negotiators have the confidence to explore the publicly unsayable, in the pursuit of peace?" said Ash.

Apparently, Ash was referring to the information that Palestine had offered Israel more than some Palestinians may have been willing to give. It makes absolutely no sense to say that such information needs to be kept secret. If the Palestinian public cannot accept what its leadership offered Israel then there was never a chance that the negotiations would have succeeded in the first place. What is Abbas going to do? Tell his people that he’s made a deal with Israel but he can’t tell them what it is? Does he think he can hand over East Jerusalem and not tell his people that he did that? Does he think he can forfeit the right of return and not tell his people that he did that?

This is yet another case of a historian arguing that the people really shouldn’t understand what’s going on. For me, historians are perhaps the biggest failures, the most fundamentally dishonest, misleading, counterproductive, and harmful people who have protected the people who should not have been protected at expense of the people who should have been. For them, it’s okay to leak the helicopter video because it’s really dramatic and it doesn’t explain a damn thing about why things like what occurred in that video happen. Historians love to teach history as one damn thing after another. But what they will never do is to tell the public the way the world works or why things happen.

Bow down, Europe. Bow down.

The UN would hold a conference on global warming in Thailand from April 3 to April 8. Europe, of course, had been wanting Japan to extend her commitments under the Kyoto Protocol. Japan didn’t want to do that. And I didn’t want Japan to have to do that either. So after not publishing anything on my blog since March 12, I started posting articles once again. This time I posted three articles in five days. Every single one of them attacked Europe.

Friday, April 1, 2011

The conversation about Kan continues on Global Talk 21

Later in the day, an anonymous person posted the following comment about Naoto Kan on Global Talk 21.
What is wrong with this guy? He lit politics up back in the 90s. Is he just old, or did we have him wrong the first time around? I just don't get it...
I have a feeling that Jun Okumura wrote this comment.

Parents coming to Las Vegas on April 16

In an email, my father tells me that he and my mother will come to see me from April 16 to April 19.

Jun Okumura agrees with the policy direction of the Kan administration

On April 1, Jun Okumura responded to my comment on the Kan administration.

For all I know, he's issuing orders left and right from his office and every one of them has been 100% on point. Then again, maybe not. In any case, there are things that are expected of political leaders in crisis, and he appears to be incapable of providing them. Beyond the crisis though, I actually like the policy directions in which he intends to take Japan. Strange man.