10/15/2011 archive

Random Japan


Typhoon Roke didn’t slow down testing of a new maglev high-speed train in Yamanashi Prefecture, which apparently passed with flying colors during the storm.

Two guys who run a company in Hokkaido called alibi.com-that makes up bogus background info for people applying for loans, jobs, etc-were in trouble with Johnny Law… for making up bogus info. “Since that’s our business, we provided a false explanation,” reasoned one of the accused.

Yakult Swallows outfielder Aaron Guiel hung up the cleats after a five-year spell in Japan that saw him belt 90 home runs. Back injuries forced the former MLB player to call it a career and head back to his native Canada.

A story in The Asahi Shimbun said a 132-meter long ferry called the Yotei Maru 2, docked at a maritime museum in Odaiba, can be yours for the taking, provided you have a place to moor the vessel.

Not surprisingly, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism reported that “land prices have tumbled in the three prefectures of northeastern Japan most affected by the March 11 disaster.” Some property in Miyagi Prefecture has plummeted more than 18 percent. Now that’s a toxic market.

On the other side of the coin, a spokeswoman for the Candle House chain said that sales of candles increased about 50 percent after March 11.

Yukio Akagariyama became the first Japanese billiards player to win the World 9-Ball Championship in 13 years when he beat Ronnie Alcano of the Philippines in the final in Doha.

au will start selling Apple’s iPhone in Japan, and local cellphone producers fear the worst.

In other news from the cellphone sector, NTT DoCoMo is coming out with a phone that has a cover, or jacket, capable of “measuring bad breath, body fat and even radiation.”

A security guard working on a cash delivery truck in Saitama was shot in both knees by a man who snatched a bag from him before taking off on a motorbike. The bag reportedly contained only a few documents and no cash.

Health and Fitness News

Welcome to the Stars Hollow Health and Fitness weekly diary. It will publish on Saturday afternoon and be open for discussion about health related issues including diet, exercise, health and health care issues, as well as, tips on what you can do when there is a medical emergency. Also an opportunity to share and exchange your favorite healthy recipes.

Questions are encouraged and I will answer to the best of my ability. If I can’t, I will try to steer you in the right direction. Naturally, I cannot give individual medical advice for personal health issues. I can give you information about medical conditions and the current treatments available.

You can now find past Health and Fitness News diaries here and on the right hand side of the Front Page.

Hearty Do-Ahead Dishes


This week’s hearty one-dish vegetarian meals are meant to appeal to families that include a mix of meat-eaters and vegetarians.

French Lentils with Chard

A great pot of beans or lentils, even when you add to it a bunch of chard from the farmers’ market, costs no more than $4 to make, and it feeds four to six people.

Bulgur and Kale Casserole with Yogurt Topping

This comforting kale and bulgur casserole is modeled on the casserole with eggplant and bulgur.

Mushroom Lasagna

This lasagna tastes very rich, even though it really isn’t. It combines an olive oil béchamel with a simple mushroom ragout and Parmesan cheese.

Red Bean Stew

Hungarian gulyas (goulash) is the inspiration here, but this one is a vegetable dish. It has a deep, rich flavor redolent of paprika, garlic, lots of sweet peppers and onions.

Mixed Bean and Winter Squash Stew with Fresh Basil

The fresh or frozen limas add a pale green, fresh bean to the mix.

Occupy Wall St. Livestream: Day 29

Watch live streaming video from globalrevolution at livestream.com


The resistance continues at Liberty Square, with free pizza 😉

“I don’t know how to fix this but I know it’s wrong.” ~ Unknown Author

#OWS VICTORY: The people have prevailed, gear up for global day of action

Over 3,000 people gathered at Liberty Plaza in the pre-dawn hours this morning to defend the peaceful Occupation near Wall Street. The crowd cheered at the news that multinational real estate firm Brookfield Properties will postpone its so-called ‘cleanup’ of the park and that Mayor Bloomberg has told the NYPD to stand down on orders to remove protesters. On the eve of the October 15 global day of action against Wall Street greed, this development has emboldened the movement and sent a clear message that the power of the people has prevailed against Wall Street. …

On October 15th, Occupy Wall Street will demonstrate in concert over 951 cities in 82 countries and counting as people around the globe protest in an international day of solidarity against the greed and corruption of the 1%.

This is the Live Feed of #OWS from The Guardian: Occupy Wall Street live: protesters claim victory as clear-up called off

Follow all the developments after park owners call off a clear-up of the Occupy Wall Street camp in Zuccotti Park in New York

I strongly suspect the decision to call off the cleaning is but a temporary reprieve.  Emperor Mike used some pretty harsh language yesterday accusing the City Council members of “threatening” the owners of the park

Mr. Bloomberg, speaking later in the morning on his weekly radio program on WOR-AM (710), attributed the decision to postpone the cleaning to the company that owns the park, Brookfield Properties, which he said had been pressured to back off by elected officials. Mr. Bloomberg indicated that he had some misgivings about the decision, and was not sure what would happen next.

“Yesterday, as of 8 o’clock at night, they were going ahead to do it, but as of midnight they called and said they wanted to postpone the cleaning operations to see if they could work out an agreement with the protesters,” Mr. Bloomberg said. “My understanding is that Brookfield got lots of calls from many elected officials threatening them and saying if you don’t stop this we’ll make your life more difficult.

That is an ugly allegation.

Bloomberg and his cronies will be back with some other reason to put an end to the protest. He must protect his fellow oligarchs from the embarrassment by the masses before the world. Right now it might create an international incident.

Activist Who Reagan Called ‘One Of The World’s Greatest Labor Leaders’ Coming To Support Occupy Wall Street

Solidarity hero Lech Walesa [sic] is flying to New York to show his support for the Occupy Wall Street protesters. “How could I not respond,” Walesa told a Polish newspaper Wednesday. “The thousands of people gathered near Wall Street are worried about the fate of their future, the fate of their country. This is something I understand.” []

Wałęsa says he’s coming to help protest economic “unfairness.” “Union leaders and capitalists need to figure out what to do, because otherwise they will have to contend with a worldwide revolt against capitalism,” he warned.


On October 15th people from all over the world will take to the streets and squares.

From America to Asia, from Africa to Europe, people are rising up to claim their rights and demand a true democracy. Now it is time for all of us to join in a global non violent protest.

The ruling powers work for the benefit of just a few, ignoring the will of the vast majority and the human and environmental price we all have to pay. This intolerable situation must end.

United in one voice, we will let politicians, and the financial elites they serve, know it is up to us, the people, to decide our future. We are not goods in the hands of politicians and bankers who do not represent us.

On October 15th, we will meet on the streets to initiate the global change we want. We will peacefully demonstrate, talk and organize until we make it happen.

It’s time for us to unite. It’s time for them to listen.

People of the world, rise up on October 15th!

On This Day In History October 15

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

October 15 is the 288th day of the year (289th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 77 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte begins his final exile on the Island of St. Helene.

Napoleon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a military and political leader of France and Emperor of the French as Napoleon I, whose actions shaped European politics in the early 19th century.

Napoleon was born in Corsica to parents of minor noble Italian ancestry and trained as an artillery officer in mainland France. Bonaparte rose to prominence under the French First Republic and led successful campaigns against the First and Second Coalitions arrayed against France. In 1799, he staged a coup d’etat and installed himself as First Consul; five years later the French Senate proclaimed him emperor. In the first decade of the 19th century, the French Empire under Napoleon engaged in a series of conflicts-the Napoleonic Wars-involving every major European power. After a streak of victories, France secured a dominant position in continental Europe, and Napoleon maintained the French sphere of influence through the formation of extensive alliances and the appointment of friends and family members to rule other European countries as French client states.

The French invasion of Russia in 1812 marked a turning point in Napoleon’s fortunes. His Grande Armee was badly damaged in the campaign and never fully recovered. In 1813, the Sixth Coalition defeated his forces at Leipzig; the following year the Coalition invaded France, forced Napoleon to abdicate and exiled him to the island of Elba. Less than a year later, he escaped Elba and returned to power, but was defeated at the Battle of Waterloo in June 1815. Napoleon spent the last six years of his life in confinement by the British on the island of Saint Helena. An autopsy concluded he died of stomach cancer, though Sten Forshufvud and other scientists have since conjectured he was poisoned with arsenic.

Napoleon’s campaigns are studied at military academies the world over. While considered a tyrant by his opponents, he is also remembered for the establishment of the Napoleonic code, which laid the administrative and judicial foundations for much of Western Europe.

F1: Yeongam Qualifying

So I missed practice yesterday but evidently I didn’t miss much since it all took place in the rain, though because you only get 3 sets of Wets and Inters for the whole damn weekend some teams could be in tire trouble if it stays damp.

In any event there was very little testing that could actually be done and McLaren’s dominance is no indicator of anything.  Button had to switch his car since the carbon fiber is deteriorated.  Serves him right for talking trash about Vettel and Hamilton.

Yeongam is actually one of the more interesting tracks with a nice long straight between turns 2 and 3.  Unlike last year when they were rushing to finish it and the possibility of a Daytona tarmac malfunction existed this year should see little drama.

That little you will find below.

Seattle Teachers – FIVE For FOUR – Thurs. 20 Oct.

Dear Seattle Teachers  and Seattle Education Advocates –

On Wed. 19 Oct the ballots go in the mail for the Seattle School Board election of Tues. 8 November.

WE each need to get 5 people WE know to vote for the FOUR challengers to the school board.

– Do YOU want to be on Strike in Sept. 2013 because the fellow travelers of Maria Goodloe-Johnson’s management by disruption, confusion and chaos have changed their tunes but NOT their behaviors?


–The more disruptions from downtown, the less we can help our kids.

–The more the school board is dancing to the tunes of education “reformers” who RARELY help us do our jobs better, the more disruptions from downtown.**

–The LESS we participate in elections, the more the school board dances and the more downtown disrupts.

— This really doesn’t require a mountain of degrees to figure out, because it is simple cause and effect.

Read the words of a Tacoma teacher who has taught at Lincoln High School for 21 years and who was on strike this year –



WE each need to get 5 people WE know to vote for the FOUR challengers to the school board.

2011 NLCS- Brewers at Cardinals Game 5

So it’s all tied up 2 – 2 now and true Cardinals fans (as opposed by playoff types like me) may be disappointed in their performance, but as long as they avoid being placed in an elimination bind their situation is not so bad.

No one on the Brewers staff seems to be able to solve the Pujols problem and Zack Greinke with his lousy post season starts (37th and 40th out of 56) and 8.18 ERA is unlikely to be the key.  They’ll be reduced to pitching around him.

Opposing will be Jaime Garcia who’s pitched better than his record.  Also Berkman will be back in the lineup after a day of rest.

Still, it’s likely to be a low scoring game since Busch Stadium is much friendlier to pitchers than Miller Park.

I’ll remind myself that this weekend is also a Formula One weekend with Qualifying in Yeongam tonight at 1 am.  I’m not sure what I’ll talk about as I missed practice in last night’s excitement.