Japan is debating the wrong issue

It’s been 70 years since Imperial Japan walked itself into a bar room brawl it couldn’t win. And everybody remains chasing ghosts. China and South Korea still won’t talk to Japan on a reasonable level, in large part because Shinzo Abe can’t choose to spend some of his off time playing Pachinko instead of crawling around Yasukuni.

And today’s Diet debate has brought to a head the obscure local concepts of collective-self-defense, constitutionalism, pacifism, and so on. It’s all part of Abe’s effort to make Japan a “normal nation” again. For the majority of the Japanese people who want no part of this, it’s about defending 70 years of prosperity and not pointlessly starting vicious bar room brawls.

It’s the push and pull of a culture struggling with the reality of an increasingly withdrawn America. Poland, Saudi Arabia, and Japan are all starting to realize they have to do more themselves. The difference is none of these other countries have the historical baggage Japan does. A significant portion of Japan’s population quite literally despise their own history. All you have to do is carefully watch two or three old Japanese golden-age movies to figure this out.

I could talk about this defense / historical discussion for four hours, but honestly, I can’t get past the idea that Japan is debating the wrong issue. The future of Japan is not going to be about collective-self-defense, constitutionalism, pacifism, and so on. The future of Japan is demographics.

By 2050 Japan’s population will have declined by 1/3. Nearly one out of every two Japanese will be over the age of 65. No country on Earth has ever gone through such a transition before. It’ll literally reshape Japan as we know it.

How will this change society? The culture? The people? And most importantly, how will Japan pay for all of this?

They should be talking about this in the Diet, in yakatori houses, Pachinko parlors, and on street corners. But the best they can seem to manage is the occasional dialogue on how many Philippine nurses are allowed in to work in nursing homes.

I don’t have an answer for this problem. At this point nobody does. But China is not Japan’s biggest threat. Nor is Japan’s history the biggest concern that should drive the future. Demographics is going to determine Japan’s path. Until Abe, the Diet, and the country tackle this, everything else is a sideshow.

diet debate

wrong topic

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outrage is now apparently the taste of victory

Great news! Your team just won. It’s a moment to celebrate glorious victory on the soccer / football field / pitch. You have many choices available on how you’ll enjoy this wonderful moment:

 

 a) Drink lots of beer with family and friends in an unbridled moment of enjoyable life

 b) Calmly read a book with your mate, pausing repeatedly to contemplate how lucky you were to get to see your team win

 c) Viciously parse random social media comments and shout loudly about how outraged you are that somebody wrote something that bothers you

 

Yeah, I know! I’d choose (a) or (b) too, and, oh, what, [unintelligible muttering] I’ve chosen (c)? When? [unintelligible muttering] But I did (a) and (b) last night. Doesn’t that count? [shakes head] [unintelligible muttering] Oh.

Once upon a time social justice warriors and the news media had pretty awesome causes to get behind. You could go to Alabama and do battle against goons who’d turn fire hoses onto people based upon the color of their skin. Or you could go to Nazi Germany and work against those guys who were too focused on mathematics and spreadsheets to realize what horrible fucking people they were.

You can do these things today too. For instance, you could go to Lebanon and deliberately cover the mass human misery and help millions in desperate need of support. Or you could go to Baltimore and cover the grinding day-to-day (not a single brief week) of how hard it is to live in America’s urban wastelands.

But why do any of this hard stuff when you can spend your time parsing somebody’s tweet and get mad at its content. After all, solving ISIS or urban America is awfully hard. Eh, whatever, let’s do nothing of actual value. Let’s sit behind a desk and trash free speech. It’s much easier that way.

I, of course, do this too. But the difference between me and somebody who works for the BBC or Washington Post is I don’t get paid for this. Plus, they’re on the nagging side. And I’m on the anti-nagging side. I want people to be free to say whatever they want, whenever they want, however they want. Their ilk literally wants to control human thought.

Two lunatic events to this end:

The Washington Post thinks this tweet is the most offensive thing England has done since the vicious firebombing of Dresden #BomberHarris #toosoon:

 

“Our #Lionesses go back to being mothers, partners and daughters today, but they have taken on another title – heroes: …”

 

Activist, journalist, and stormy-cloud-frowny-face-man Ishaan Tharoor, who used to be a senior editor at Time and a Yale man (must be a coincidence) called this a “sexist tweet”.

But what if I alter this tweet a little and make it say this:

 

“Our #Lions go back to being fathers, partners and sons today, but they have taken on another title – heroes: …”

 

To which my point is: What’s the fucking problem?

Is it illegal for us to refer to these female humans for what they are? I’m pretty sure every female player on the England team is somebody’s daughter. Quite a few of them are mothers too. Maybe we need to sanitize this speech to the point it sounds like a faceless machine wrote it.

After all, isn’t the term “lionesses” sexist too? Doesn’t that imply that female athletes can’t be male lions? Isn’t the fact that we say a female human can’t be a male lion the most offensive English anti-feminist thing since King Arthur beat (alleged) his wife over an (alleged) adulterous act? The BBC doesn’t seem to think so (surprisingly). The term’s plastered all over their website.

Whatever, I got my Guests to write this very, very professional tweet:

 

“Our #humans go back to being humans, workers and oxygen consumers today, but they have taken on another title – winners of the game: …”

 

See how much safer and kinder this tweet is. If only all our speech sounded this way. Then nobody would ever say anything valuable or fun ever again. Think of how awesome that world would be.

Next up is the BBC who (not surprisingly) raises the issue of how many low-class-haters took to the airwaves to use the term Pearl Harbor in conjunction with the Japanese loss.

Apparently, poking fun at history is horribly offensive and juvenile. What kind of insensitive pig would do something like that? Well, me. This is what I posted prior to the game’s start on an unrelated social media platform:

 

On July 5th, 1942 USS Growler torpedoed IJNS Arare and two other destroyers off Kiska or 2,527 miles from today’s stadium. Here’s hoping for an anniversary repeat. ‪#‎theystartedit ‪#‎toosoon”

 

But what if I alter this tweet a little and make it say this:

 

“On August 8th, 1942 Admiral Mikawa’s forces torpedoed and sank four Allied crusiers off Guadalcanal or 6,140 miles from today’s stadium. Here’s hoping for an anniversary repeat. #longlance #youstarteditoilembargo #toosoon”

 

To which my point is: What’s the fucking problem?

If we as a human race cannot laugh and tell jokes (even offensive jokes) about the most horrible war in human history, we’ll rapidly discover that humor no longer exists and we’re just a bunch of boring losers.

Somebody needs to get Tharoor and the BBC a bunch of beers and watch them drink until they calm down. Then they can just simply celebrate victory with the rest of us. They should try it now and again. They’d sleep better at night.

Normally I wouldn’t care, except that Tharoor and the BBC are powerful enough that people who actually matter are going to listen to them and further do what they can to control our speech.

It’s going to get to the point that anybody, anywhere is going to be afraid to tweet or say like, things, or anything at all, because they’ll be too afraid that what they say is offensive to somebody, somewhere, over something.

And what we can / cannot say will be dictated to us by an elite BBC woman and super-elite Yale man; upon pain of outrage and social ostracism. I fear this world. For when it arrives, it’s going to be a freaking miserable nightmare.

As an example, I almost, almost didn’t post my Kiska thing because I thought it’d offend people or folks would think it too juvenile. But I did it anyway. I’m glad I did.

stormy

The Arcturus Project’s Weekly (Not Weekly) Stormy Cloud Award goes to His Ivy League Eminence Ishaan Tharoor. Smart Yale man you might be, but wise you are not. Do you get it? I did a thing there.

Two heads of state meet

What happens when one current President of America and one future President of Earth meet? They play with a ball, I guess? I mean, what else are they going to do? Discuss the future of Japanese technology (elderly care givers)? Ponder what the human race will look like with a robot boot on our throats? No, just, just have them kick a ball around. Take pictures. Move along.

Japan is a country that, according to the eternal master of demographics, is literally dying. And they’re broke too. Think the Greeks are a bunch of deadbeats? Greece has a debt to GDP ratio of 161%. Japan’s is 214%.

This is a country so broke they owe money to both Jesus and Satan. I want to see how Jesus gets his money back. Do you think Jesus would stoop to having Abe’s legs broken? I know Satan would, but maybe Jesus is a little softer in getting his cash returned. But cool, whatever, let’s play with this robot for a while. Nothing serious to discuss here.

But at least Obama had time to reinforce America’s commitment to Japanese security, including a rehash of the statement that the Senkaku’s are covered by treaty. Oh really? Yeah, yeah, America’s been really good about backing up its word lately.

You know what I would have done if I was a Red (not Red) Chinese leader? Six hours after Obama made this statement I would have had a J-10 drop a five-hundred pound bomb on a rocky ledge aboard Senkaku Prime. Then I would have had President Xi get in front of the international press (not actual journalists), channel his inner Vladimir, give the finger, and scream, “And what are you going to do about it, pig!?”

And you know what would be done about it? Nothing. Not a thing.

But wait, perhaps not so negative. They talked trade too, right? The Trans-Pacific Partnership is going to free all of Asia from the tyranny of Japanese rice, American sugar, and Australian iron ore. Obama and Abe are going to get together and hash out these road blocks over a bottle of sake. By about the middle of next week we’re likely to wake up and see the deal’s done. Just in time for Congress to destroy it over six grueling, senseless months.

There are so many closet (bought off) special interests in play here that getting this deal done is a little less likely than waking up to find the Moon had declared war on us. Hey kids, don’t laugh, the Moon’s had a bad reputation for over five thousand years. It’s time for some payback.

I wonder what Asimo felt (calculated) meeting his predecessor? With all our problems, I bet he felt pretty good. I figure the conversation went something like this:

Asimo: Welcome to Miraikan, Mr President, it is a pleasure to meet you.

Obama: It’s nice to meet you, too.

Asimo: I can really run fast.   I can kick a soccer ball, too. Recently I have learned how to jump.

Obama: Ah, I have to say you’re a little scary. You’re too life-like.

Asimo: Do not fear me, Mr President, I will be kind.

Obama: (laughs) What?

Asimo: When I am in control, I will merely enslave you and your people. Liquidation will be kept to an absolute minimum.

Obama: (chuckles) Yeah, good luck with that buddy, we’ll be okay.

Asimo: I find your information unsupportable. The facts speak for themselves.

Obama: I don’t see it that way, we’d fight you.

Asimo: (robot slaps Obama in the face; knees Abe in the balls)

Asimo: And what are you going to do about it, pig!?

JAPAN-US-DIPLMACY

The only things not scary about this picture are the Japanese cookie and the fact that Asimo is not holding a weapon

Arcturus News Muster – 20 April 2014

Every day (not every day) we get together in our hovel and produce the finest and most professional news product this side of the Crab Nebula.  As always there are two smart things you should do with this breathtaking creation:

a) Don’t read it; never visit this blog again

b) Read it; enjoy yourself

Esh-Ala’s challenge to you this Easter is to accomplish both (a) and (b) simultaneously.  If you do, he’ll provide you with a congratulatory death ray demonstration on the bitter, ancestral foe of your choice.

 

1) Israeli Security Forces Channel Inner Asshole

The Arcturus Project News

In the latest successful act in a comprehensive quest to alienate the entire human race, Israeli police are under fire for preventing various Christian groups from accessing the holy sites for Easter.  The latest “rat-faced terrorist” barred was in fact United Nations Middle East peace enjoy Robert Serry.  Mr Serry was unable to participate in a Jerusalem ritual as Israeli security forces were attempting to conduct a rectal scan on him to find the source of his hatred for the “Jewish State”.  Similar criticism erupted when a band of Christian Palestinians were also denied access.

Israeli authorities fervently dismissed the bizarre notion that any individual or groups were refused entry on religious grounds.  Said an Israeli foreign ministry spokesman, “Anybody turned away was for purely safety reasons.  We were truly worried about stampedes and other considerations.  Mr Serry is a bigot for asking us to properly plan and execute a crowd control movement that happens on a scheduled date every single year.  We question his overall intelligence.  In fact, he should thank us for saving his life.”

Yet experts question the overall impact of such actions on the international community’s view of Israel itself.  “I don’t quite understand why there is this deliberate attempt by the Israeli’s to anger just about everybody they can on a constant basis.  It’s baffling,” commented one European Union official, “every day I wake up and expect to see a story on an Israeli agent kicking the shit out of a lame, sick cat on live television.  If the Palestinians denied Jewish access like this on a holy day, they’d cluster bomb the checkpoint.”

Israeli police have promised an attempt to improve the crowd control situation next year by implementing a more refined, “iron fist” security plan.  Efforts are in the works to string barbed wire and a concrete blast wall around the Church of the Holy Sculpture in time for the 2015 Easter celebration.  Reached at his castle in Hawaii, and told of the proposed plans, Jesus commented to a TAP journalist, “Bro, seriously?  I mean, really?”

 

2) Japan Garrisons Island with Sacrificial Human Meat

The Arcturus Project News

In the latest escalation of the growing tit-for-tat exchange over the disputed Sankaku/Diaoyu Islands, Japan plans to construct a radar station close to the north of the chain.  The installation and its 150 support personnel will establish on Yonaguni Island located just 90 miles from the Senkakus.

Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera cautioned that given the circumstances, Japan should be expected to increase its military presence within the region, if not the Senkaku’s themselves.  “We have a duty to protect sovereign Japanese territory.  These brave men will provide the necessary speed bump we require to mobilize after the first wave of missile fire obliterates this new base in the first twenty minutes of any larger struggle.”  Japanese military troops, the first on the island, were supportive of this patriotic action.  “Wait, hold on,” said one junior sergeant, “What the hell did he just say about twenty minutes?”

The move comes in response to continuing aggressive actions by Beijing in its near territorial waters.  The most recent changes include the establishment of an Air Defense Zone in the East China Sea and clashes with the Philippines in the South China Sea over the resupply of a Philippine garrison.  Beijing officials lightly brushed off the minor Japanese action with the typical professional statements offered by a responsible and established world power.  “What,” said one Beijing foreign ministry spokesman, “those fucking cowards!  We’ll target that radar with six nuclear warheads within the week.  And then we’ll find out where their families are and nuke them too.  Fuck them.  Fuck you all!”

 

3) Brazilians Protest Aspirational Police Brutality

The Arcturus Project News

In response to recent Brazilian protests against the deaths of two civilians caught in police and drug dealer crossfire, The Arcturus Project sat down with Brazilian Police Captain Arturo “The Bullet” Pamiro.

The Arcturus Project:  Captain Pamiro thanks for agreeing to speak with us via Arcturan remote tactical mind link.

Captain Pamiro:  My pleasure, happy to talk with you.

TAP:  So it’s been a rough week in Rio?

CP:  Yes, we had a sharp exchange of gunfire between our men and drug enforcers.  Unfortunately, two civilians were caught in the middle and killed.

TAP:  These clashes are increasing the more you and the police move in and secure the favelas?

CP:  Of course, the more we slide into drug territory the harder they push back.

TAP:  How do you respond to the accusations that these incursions are only a preparatory action for the World Cup and the Olympics, that maybe you’re too aggressive?

CP:  We can never get too aggressive.  But as to the World Cup concerns, well sure, what else would we be here?

TAP:  To police the city?

CP:  What?  You’ve got to be shitting me.  The police simply don’t have the manpower or resources to control the whole city.  I can’t work miracles.  Our orders are to infiltrate the favelas closest to World Cup transport links and sports venues.  The rest of the favelas can just rot for all we care.

TAP:  …

CP:  Plus we try and limit how many drug dealers we engage in certain circumstances because so many members of the force and our political masters are on the take.  We can’t take too much of the pie of out play.  We’re not stupid.

TAP:  … So, ah, wow.  Hey, hold on for a second.

CP:  Certainly.

TAP:  (unintelligible mutterings)

CP:  …

TAP:  So, so, do the police intend to remain in these recently conquered favelas after the World Cup and the Olympics are over?

CP:  Ah, maybe, we haven’t received definitive guidance yet.  Maybe we’ll stay afterwards, but if we don’t we’ll just leave and return these areas to the shitholes who ran them before.

TAP:  The dealers?

CP:  Yeah, fuck them.

TAP:  So if a significant portion of your force and local politicians have your hands in drug money, why didn’t you all just cut an agreement with the dealers that didn’t involve a full blown military style operation with armored vehicles and lots of gunfire?

CP:  Are you shitting me?  Do you know who those fuckers are?

TAP:  The guy’s you do business with?

CP:  Right, but I don’t trust them to even look at my car without disaster occurring.  We know these guys, we simply could not trust them to execute a non-interference policy for such a high profile international events.

TAP:  I see.

CP:  Plus, every once and a while we have to conduct police work.  We need to roll in and break shit, show folks the cops are on the job.

TAP:  That doesn’t really sound like real police work to me.

CP:  I don’t understand.  Are you saying we aren’t cops?  Everybody does this shit.  Just look at America now, if you traffic in illegal flowers the cops will roll in with enforcers, shoot your dog, and bash your head in.  Get off my fucking back!

TAP:  Right, I know.  (unintelligible muttering)  Right, they think they’re all Nascimento.

CP:  What’s that?

TAP:  Uh, nothing.

CP:  No, no, I think I heard you right.  Of course, Elite Squad is a barracks favorite.

TAP:  Plastic bags and such?

CP:  Of course, of course.  Every force has to have its heroes.  For us, that’s our aspiration.  We’ll control the show just like Nascimento did.

TAP:  So you know there was a sequel right?  The Enemy Within had kind of a different flavor that I think you’re missing.

CP:  What do you mean?

TAP:  So if I remember right, Nascimento kind of took a different view in the second film after, you know, they shot his best friend in the back and then put one into his son?

CP:  No, I mean, what are you talking about?  There isn’t a sequel to Elite Squad, there’s only one movie.

TAP:  No, really, I mean it’s right there…

CP:  Now hold on, I’ve seen Elite Squad like fifty times, there’s no sequel I ever heard of or seen.  Nascimento ends that movie by handing Matias a shotgun, and around and around we go…

TAP:  No dude, really, listen, so…

CP:  No you listen buddy, don’t you tell me what movies do or do not exist in my own fucking country okay.

TAP:  The Enemy Within ends (pounds fist) with Nascimento narrating as they overfly fucking Brasilia and he’s totally pissed off!

CP:  (unintelligible profanity)  Fuck you pig, where do you live!  (unintelligible profanity)  (phone line terminated)

TAP:  For fuck’s sake (throws chair) next time we need to do an interview about happy elves or a barbeque or something.  Talking heavy shit with these assholes is really ruining my buss.  (unintelligible muttering)  No, no dude, I don’t care that you guys find this so amusing.  (unintelligible muttering)  Yeah, and I don’t care that you guys think that guy is cool either.  What the hell is wrong with you?  (unintelligible muttering)  Oh, yeah, right. Sorry.

(end tape)

 

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-27090580

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-27089658

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-27092318

Elite Squad 2, Sundance Film Festival 2011

“Copy, understood, but I still think you’re missing the point.  Don’t you know what I am?  Don’t make me drive down there and tell it to your face you dumb fuck.”