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  • Archive for March, 2008

    Quick note to readers: Book tour is going exceptionally well…

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 28th March 2008

    Been quiet the past couple of weeks as the HANDBOOK FOR NEWCOMERS Book Tour reaches its home stretch. Just a quick word to tell everyone it’s been a life-changing experience, with boxes of books selling out, warm receptions, and good attendances everywhere. Quite simply, I’m not used to a book selling so quickly and reviews so universally positive.

    Posted in Articles & Publications, Good News, Speech materials, Uncategorized | 4 Comments »

    Debito on tour March 15 to April 1, Blog will be updated less often

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 14th March 2008

    Just a quick word to say that I’ll be on the road from now on, updating my blog (and approving comments) less often. Apologies. HANDBOOK Tour dates again, FYI:

    Posted in Speech materials, Uncategorized | No Comments »

    “WELCOME NON-JAPANESE CUSTOMERS” stickers for businesses now on sale at Debito.org (Paypal OK)

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 13th March 2008

    Happy to announce, along with the sale of HANDBOOK FOR NEWCOMERS, MIGRANTS, AND IMMIGRANTS, another new program on Debito.org to push back the night–and counteract the nationwide spread of JAPANESE ONLY signs on businesses: New signs that say “WE WELCOME NON-JAPANESE CUSTOMERS”.

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Exclusionism, Good News, Human Rights | 38 Comments »

    J Times et al on homicide of Scott Tucker: “likely to draw leniency”

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 13th March 2008

    We have a situation here I’ve been waiting to draw conclusions on for some days now. But here are some articles which substantiate what I’ve been fearing all along. The indication of differing judicial standards for similar crimes based upon nationality.

    When a NJ killed a J in 1984 (see the Steve Bellamy Case, where a NJ defending a woman against a drunk and disorderly Japanese wound up killing him with his advanced martial arts skills), he was exonerated, then convicted, then exonerated again for, colloquially, “yarisugi” (and it became a case that changed jurisprudence for kajou bouei in Japan).

    Now we have the opposite circumstance–a J killing a NJ–and according to the Japan Times, leniency is expected.

    Historically, America had the expression, “he doesn’t have a Chinaman’s chance” (the modern-day equivalent of “a snowball’s chance in hell”), showing how bent the American judiciary was towards Asians a century or so ago. In Japan’s judiciary, are we to say, “he doesn’t have a gaijin’s chance”? Mr Yuyu Idubor, convicted for a rape he says he never committed, or Mr Valentine, crippled due to police medical negligence during interrogation, might.

    Posted in Ironies & Hypocrisies, Japanese police/Foreign crime, Lawsuits, Problematic Foreign Treatment | 19 Comments »

    Trans Pacific Radio Podcast on HANDBOOK

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 13th March 2008

    In this edition of TPR spotlight, Debito Arudou joins TPR’s Garrett DeOrio and Ken Worsley to discuss the upcoming release of his new book, Handbook for Newcomers, Migrants, and Immigrants, which is set to go on sale from March 15. In the interview, Debito speaks about why the book was written, what kinds of resources it offers for people moving to Japan, his relationship with co-author Akira Higuchi, the upcoming book tour, and what might be in store for the future of Japan’s increasing number of foreign residents who decide to stay in Japan long term, if not permanently.

    Posted in Handbook for Newcomers, Podcasts | No Comments »

    DEBITO.ORG NEWSLETTER MARCH 12, 2008

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 12th March 2008

    1) New publications up on Debito.org:
    First JUST BE CAUSE Japan Times Column, Journal of Intl Health, NY Intl Law Review

    The government cracks down, is cracked down upon:
    2) IHT: GOJ to “govern influential, widely read news-related websites”. Like 2-Channel.
    3) UN’s Mr Ban calls for all nations to face UN Human Rights Council scrutiny
    4) Rube Redfield on the GOJ banning use of dispatch teachers in J universities

    Tripe and onions:
    5) Mainichi: Official figures for NJ visa overstayers drop again in 2007, yet NPA stresses rise
    6) NYT: Michelin rankings and the alleged inability for NJ to rate Japanese food

    Travelogue and opinions:
    7) Interview with Debito on KPIJ re activism, new book, the GOJ, and “The Japanese Way”
    8) Quick Report on Debito’s recent Okinawa Trip: AmerAsian School, Kina Shoukichi

    … and finally…
    9) “WELCOME NON-JAPANESE CUSTOMERS” stickers for sale at Debito.org
    10) LINKS TO PRESS RELEASE, PODCAST, BOOK TOUR, and ORDERING DETAILS (PAYPAL OK)
    for “Handbook for Newcomers, Migrants, and Immigrants”

    Posted in Newsletters | No Comments »

    Outgoing BOJ chief Fukui Toshihiko proposes debate on immigration

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 12th March 2008

    AP: “utgoing Bank of Japan Governor Toshihiko Fukui believes Japan ought to hold an in-depth discussion on immigration in the face of its aging and declining population. In a lecture late last month, Fukui, who is due to retire March 19, said the source of economic growth is an infusion of labor and the accumulation of capital but that manpower is decreasing in Japan because of the ongoing rise in the number of the elderly and fall in the number of newborns.”

    Posted in Immigration & Assimilation, Japanese Government | 2 Comments »

    Press Release: First NGO FRANCA meetings Sendai Mar 15, Osaka Mar 25

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 11th March 2008

    Press Release: Forming NGO FRANCA
    (Foreign Residents And Naturalized Citizens Association)
    First Sendai And Osaka Meetings,
    Sat March 15 And Tues March 25 Respectively
    Open To The Public, Arudou Debito will speak

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Immigration & Assimilation, Speech materials | 3 Comments »

    “HANDBOOK for Newcomers, Migrants, and Immigrants”: info site on how to buy (Paypal OK)

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 11th March 2008

    Hi Blog. Just put up a new website on Debito.org with information on how you can buy our new book, HANDBOOK for Newcomers, Migrants, and Immigrants, within Japan or internationally. Paypal possible. Please see: http://www.debito.org/handbook.html More on the book and upcoming national book tour at http://www.debito.org/?page_id=582 Arudou Debito in Sapporo

    Posted in Articles & Publications, debito.org blog and website biz | No Comments »

    UN’s Mr Ban calls for all nations to face UN Human Rights Council scrutiny

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 10th March 2008

    UN News: Opening the seventh session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva today, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on March 5, 2008, called on its members to ensure that all nations are held equally accountable for the protection of rights as the new body begins its first-ever universal review of their performance.

    “No country, however powerful, should escape scrutiny of its record, commitments and actions on human rights,” Mr. Ban said, hailing the start of the Universal Periodic Review, under which all UN Member States – at the rate of 48 a year – will be reviewed to assess whether they have fulfilled their human rights obligations.

    Posted in Human Rights, Japanese Government, United Nations | No Comments »

    「外国人との共生と治安の確保」フォーラム(警察大学校警察政策研究センター開催)

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 9th March 2008

    「外国人との共生と治安の確保」フォーラム:警察大学校警察政策研究センター開催、平成20年3月11日(火) 午後1時00分 〜 午後6時00分。趣旨:「移民問題等に詳しい英・独の専門家を招へいして、これらの国における外国人の既存社会との共生と治安への影響等について講演をしていただくとともに、我が国の抱える課題について、研究者、実務家等も交えて議論をし、今後の外国人政策のあるべき姿についての道筋を照らすことを試みます。」

    Posted in Immigration & Assimilation, Japanese police/Foreign crime, 日本語 | No Comments »

    Rube Redfield on the GOJ banning use of dispatch teachers in J universities

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 9th March 2008

    Here’s one loophole that has just been closed by the GOJ–about the use of “dispatch teachers” (haken sha’in) in the place of full-time workers in universities. This creates problems not only with professionality (essentially putting in “temp” workers in place of qualified professionals), but also with labor standards, as you get part-timers filling in for full-timers, saving money on salaries and social insurance (which the educational institution must pay half of for all full-timers). And with dispatch agencies (such as NOVA and Berlitz) getting involved in this racket, you get businesses creaming off the top as well–sending in disposable labor for a fraction of the cost of hiring anyone with job security and training. The economic incentives are clear. So clear they were abused. Now the GOJ has banned it. Bravo.

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Education, Good News, Labor issues | 18 Comments »

    出版発表:「ニューカマー定住ハンドブック」新発売

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 8th March 2008

    「ニューカマー定住ハンドブック 日本で働き、暮らし、根付くために」(明石書店(株))は08年3月15日に発売です。明細(まえがき、書評、ブック・ツアー日程、目次)はこのブログで発表します。

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Articles & Publications, Handbook for Newcomers, Human Rights, Immigration & Assimilation, 日本語 | No Comments »

    IHT: GOJ to “govern influential, widely read news-related websites”. Like 2-Channel

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 8th March 2008

    Hi Blog. Here’s another development in the pipeline: the regulation of Internet speech, to stop “illegal and harmful content”. Libel, sure. But you know it’s just not going to stop there. I have very mixed feelings about this issue. I am of course an advocate of freedom of speech. But I have also been the […]

    Posted in 2ちゃんねる, Japanese Government, Media, Tangents | 5 Comments »

    イドゥボ氏の控訴審3月24日 第1回公判の傍聴呼びかけ Idubor Case next hearing March 24, 3PM, Tokyo High Court

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 7th March 2008

    07年1月22日、横浜・元町で飲食店を経営するナイジリア
    国籍のオサユワメン・イドゥボさんが加賀町警察に逮捕されま
    した。容疑は準強姦罪。06年11月1日にその店で酩酊して
    いた女性が彼にレイプされたと訴えていたのです。2月9日に
    起訴され、横浜地裁で裁判が進みました。その後、5月11日
    に横浜拘置支所に移され、現在も勾留されています。

    07年12月10日、横浜地裁(大島隆明裁判長)は懲役3年
    の有罪判決を出しました。直ちに控訴し、08年2月に控訴趣
    意書を提出、裁判は東京高裁第5刑事部で続きます。

    控訴審 第1回公判 【平成20年(う)67号】
     08年3月24日(月)15時〜 東京高裁 803号法廷

    Posted in Japanese police/Foreign crime, Lawsuits, 日本語 | 3 Comments »

    Debito.org Updates: First JUST BE CAUSE Japan Times Column, Journal of Int’l Health, NY Int’l Law Review

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 7th March 2008

    Links to three new articles added to Debito.org’s regular website: My new Japan Times Column JUST BE CAUSE (March 4, 2008), article in the Journal of International Health, and an award-winning article written by Canon Pence on the Otaru Onsens Case etc. in the New York International Law Review.

    Posted in Articles & Publications, debito.org blog and website biz | 1 Comment »

    NYT: Michelin rankings and the alleged inability for NJ to rate Japanese food

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 6th March 2008

    NYT: “But many Tokyoites grumbled that the guide gave high ratings to unremarkable restaurants, prompting wide speculation that the large number of stars was just a marketing ploy. “Anybody who knows restaurants in Tokyo knows that these stars are ridiculous,” said Toru Kenjo, president of Gentosha publishing house, whose men’s fashion magazine, Goethe, published a lengthy critique of the Tokyo guide last month. “Michelin has debased its brand. It won’t sell as well here in the future.” One chef, Toshiya Kadowaki, said his nouveau Japonais dishes, including a French-inspired rice with truffles, did not need a Gallic seal of approval. “Japanese food was created here, and only Japanese know it,” Mr. Kadowaki said in an interview. “How can a bunch of foreigners show up and tell us what is good or bad?”

    Posted in Cultural Issue | 11 Comments »

    PRESS RELEASE for Handbook for Newcomers, Migrants, and Immigrants

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 5th March 2008

    For the record… released March 4, 2008: ////////////////// PRESS RELEASE ////////////////// NEW BOOK “HANDBOOK FOR NEWCOMERS, MIGRANTS AND IMMIGRANTS TO JAPAN” ON SALE FROM MARCH 15, 2008 AUTHOR ARUDOU DEBITO’S NATIONWIDE BOOK TOUR MARCH 15 TO APRIL 1 ////////////// FREELY FORWARDABLE ////////////// Akashi Shoten Inc, Japan’s biggest human rights publisher, will sell “HANDBOOK FOR NEWCOMERS, […]

    Posted in Articles & Publications, Handbook for Newcomers, Speech materials | 1 Comment »

    DEBITO.ORG PODCAST FEBRUARY 26, 2008

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 5th March 2008

    In this edition of the Debito.org Podcast, Arudou Debito talks about his upcoming book, HANDBOOK FOR NEWCOMERS, MIGRANTS, AND IMMIGRANTS TO JAPAN. Co-authored with Higuchi Akira and published by Akashi Shoten Inc., Debito tells us what’s in the book, what it’s trying to accomplish, and why he thinks you should consider buying it (Short answer= because it has lots of useful advice about how to secure your visa and job, how to start a business, what you should do if problems arise, how you can plan for your future, and how you can participate in Japan’s Civil Society; in other words, how to live better in Japan, from entry to death. Okay, maybe not such a short answer.)

    Posted in Podcasts | No Comments »

    Mainichi: Official figures for NJ visa overstayers drop again in 2007 (UPDATED)

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 4th March 2008

    Mainichi: “Nearly 150,000 foreigners were illegally residing in Japan on expired visas as of the beginning of this year, the Justice Ministry said Friday. As of Jan. 1, there were 149,785 foreigners staying in Japan without valid visas, down 21,054 or 12.3 percent from the year earlier, according to the ministry’s Immigration Bureau.” Which means the GOJ is probably not going to make its goal of halving NJ overstayers by 2008. Also, a bit about fingerprinting’s catchnet, reported in Japanese, is not in the English version, wonder why.

    Posted in Immigration & Assimilation, Japanese police/Foreign crime, Media | 1 Comment »

    毎日新聞: 不法残留外国人:年頭で14万9785人 前年比2万人減

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 4th March 2008

    毎日:法務省入国管理局は29日、不法残留する外国人が今年1月1日現在で14万9785人で、前年より2万1054人(12.3%)減ったと発表した。不法残留者は93年の29万8646人をピークに減り続けている。国別では▽韓国3万1758人▽中国2万5057人▽フィリピン2万4741人の順に多く、この3カ国で半数を超えている。

    Posted in Immigration & Assimilation, Japanese police/Foreign crime, 日本語 | 1 Comment »

    My new Japan Times Column, “JUST BE CAUSE”, starts tomorrow

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 3rd March 2008

    My new Japan Times regular monthly column, “JUST BE CAUSE”, starts tomorrow (March 4, or March 5 in the provinces). Pick up a copy!

    Posted in Articles & Publications | 3 Comments »

    Interview (sound files) with Debito on KPIJ re activism, new book, the GOJ, and “The Japanese Way”

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 3rd March 2008

    I had an interview a few days ago with Turner, webmaster of “Keeping Pace in Japan”, regarding topics such as activism, the Japanese Government, “The Japanese Way”, and upcoming sale of HANDBOOK FOR NEWCOMERS, MIGRANTS, AND IMMIGRANTS. Link to his site for clickable sound files and audible answers. Structure of the interview as follows:

    Posted in Japanese Government, Japanese Politics, Labor issues, Speech materials | No Comments »

    Quick Report on Okinawa Trip: AmerAsian School, Kina Shoukichi

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 2nd March 2008

    A brief report (with photos) about my Feb 28-March 1 trip to Okinawa, visiting the AmerAsian School for international children who fall through Japan’s educational cracks. Also a bit about meeting musician, activist, and Dietmember Kina Shoukichi, Kadena, and Kokusai Doori. Have to get down there again soon and for longer to let impressions sink in better.

    Posted in Anti-discrimination templates/meetings, Education, Human Rights, Immigration & Assimilation | 10 Comments »

    DEBITO.ORG NEWSLETTER MARCH 1, 2008

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 2nd March 2008

    IT’S THE TIME OF THE SEASON, AGAIN: FOREIGN CRIME IN THE NEWS
    1) Kyodo says foreign crime down again in 2007, yet NPA wants further crackdown
    2) Reuters: Study says Immigrants commit less crime (in California)
    3) “Foreign crime” in reverse: The Miura Kazuyoshi Case
    4) Aly Rustom compares treatment of NJ as crime suspect with crime victim
    5) LA Times: Okinawa, alleged rape, and “outrage for show”

    GOJ’S RECENT MOVES:
    6) Terrie’s Take on Immigration’s looming crackdown on NJ residents’ whereabouts
    7) Terrie’s Take on GOJ crackdown on dual nationality
    8) MOFA Feb 12, 2008 Press Conference on language requirement for NJ Visas
    9) ABC News (USA) finally breaks the story about Japan as haven for child abductions
    10) Yomiuri: Govt to help NJ primary- and secondary-ed students learn Japanese

    NJ COMMUNITY’S RECENT MOVES:
    11) NUGW Tokyo Nambu “March in March” Mar 9, 2008 Shibuya
    12) SAYUKI, Japan’s first Occidental NJ certified Geisha, offers special party rate to large groups of NJ clients
    13) Interesting forthcoming book: “Another Japan is Possible”; citing Tony Laszlo of long-defunct “Issho Kikaku”

    SPEAKING OF BOOKS…
    14) Advance reviews and ordering details for forthcoming HANDBOOK FOR NEWCOMERS, MIGRANTS, AND IMMIGRANTS, by Akira Higuchi and Arudou Debito (due out March 15)

    and finally…
    15) NEW JAPAN TIMES REGULAR MONTHLY COLUMN BY ARUDOU DEBITO:
    “JUST BE CAUSE”, STARTS MARCH 4

    Posted in Newsletters | No Comments »

    Reuters: Study says Immigrants commit less crime (in California)

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on 1st March 2008

    Immigrants are far less likely than the average U.S.-born citizen to commit crime in California, the most populous state in the United States, according to a report issued late on Monday.

    People born outside the United States make up about 35 percent of California’s adult population but account for about 17 percent of the adult prison population, the report by the Public Policy Institute of California showed.

    Posted in Articles & Publications, Good News, Immigration & Assimilation, Japanese police/Foreign crime | 3 Comments »