DEBITO.ORG NEWSLETTER SEPTEMBER 28, 2007

mytest

DEBITO.ORG NEWSLETTER SEPTEMBER 28, 2007 //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
1) PREGNANT NJ WOMAN REFUSED TREATMENT AT 5 HOSPITALS 7 TIMES. IN 2006!
2) BIOMETRIC DATA MACHINES AT NARITA ONLY COME NOV 2007
(NJ FACE FINGERPRINTING IN THE GAIJIN LINE IN ALL OTHER AIRPORTS)
3) AMNESTY INT’L/SMJ FORUM ON NEW GOJ FINGERPRINT LAWS OCT 27 TOKYO
4) IDUBOR CASE AND THE DANGERS OF OVEREMPOWERING THE PROSECUTION
5) FUJIMORI FINALLY GETS HIS–EXTRADITION BACK TO PERU
6) NOVA EIKAIWA FINALLY GETS THEIRS–ADVICE FOR TEACHERS IN LIMBO
7) YOMIURI: FIRST TENET OF PM ABE’S “MORAL EDUCATION” PLAN SHELVED

… and finally
8) STARS AND STRIPES: KOREAN-STYLE ETHNIC DISCRIMINATION
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Compiled by Arudou Debito (debito@debito.org, www.debito.org)
RSS updates at www.debito.org/index.php
Freely Forwardable

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1) PREGNANT NJ WOMAN REFUSED TREATMENT AT 5 HOSPITALS 7 TIMES. IN 2006!

Get a load of this. It’s happening, as anticipated. When the Otaru Onsens Case (http://www.debito.org/otarulawsuit.html) first came up, one of the arguments Olaf and I made was the slippery slope. If hot springs were going to refuse NJ with impunity, what’s next? Bars? Stores? Restaurants? Hospitals?

Now it seems even hospitals refusing NJ have come to pass.

This is also happening to J women as well, the news reports. But that’s what makes this case even more ludicrous and nasty. According to the article below, these refusals happened to the NJ woman a whole year ago! It only became a “peg” for news because a similar thing recently happened to a Japanese! Oh, so until it happens to one of “us Japanese” it’s not newsworthy?? Iron na imi de hidoi! Gongo doudan!

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Foreign woman rejected 7 times by hospitals in western Japan after childbirth
Mainichi Shinbun, September 27, 2007

Courtesy http://mdn.mainichi-msn.co.jp/national/news/20070927p2a00m0na022000c.html

A foreign woman seeking medical help in Japan after giving birth at home was rejected by five hospitals where officials said her Japanese wasn’t good enough and they didn’t have proper facilities, authorities said Thursday…

The incident happened in August 2006, but was reported in Japan on Thursday in the wake of the case of a 38-year-old woman who suffered a miscarriage last month after ten hospitals refused to admit her and her ambulance collided with another car…
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Rest at http://www.debito.org/?p=603

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2) BIOMETRIC DATA MACHINES AT NARITA ONLY COME NOV 2007
(NJ FACE FINGERPRINTING IN THE GAIJIN LINE IN ALL OTHER AIRPORTS)

Debito.org has blogged a report from Martin Issott, who has been doing extensive follow-up research on the subject of Japan’s new anti-terrorist border controls over weeks. The new November Immigration Procedures, which will be reestablishing the fingerprint system withdrawn after decades of protest ten years ago, will be treating all foreigners as fresh off the boat. Including non-Japanese residents of Japan and Permanent Residents.

Worse yet, since “insufficient funds” have made it so that only one airport (Narita) will have the latest technology, NJ residents will have to give fingerprints every time they enter the country and go through the Gaijin Line. Nice welcome home, Immigration.

Martin’s report, pdf of the original letter to and its response in English and Japanese from Kobe Immigration, all at
http://www.debito.org/?p=592

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3) AMNESTY INT’L/SMJ FORUM ON GOJ FINGERPRINT LAWS OCT 27 TOKYO

Public lecture you might be interested in:

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Symposium organized by Amnesty International Japan and Solidarity Network with Migrants Japan (SMJ)
Toward further control over foreign nationals?

Japan’s anti-terrorism policy and a Japanese version of the “US-VISIT” program
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Date: Saturday, 27 October Time: 14:00 – 17:00
At: 9 Floor, KOREAN YMCA (YMCA Asia Youth Center) 2-5-5 Sarugaku-cho, Chiyoda-ku Tokyo
http://www.ymcajapan.org/ayc/jp/
Admission: 1000 yen
Simultaneous translation service available (Japanese-English)

Full details at
http://www.debito.org/?p=585

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4) IDUBOR CASE AND THE DANGERS OF OVEREMPOWERING THE PROSECUTION

An excerpt from an essay I wrote recently for the Debito.org Blog:

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“I received a message on my blog recently asking if the Idubor Case (http://www.debito.org/?p=537) of incarceration on charges of rape without conviction or evidence, was really as bad as all that, or was there something readers just weren’t being told about here?

“Well, my research recently has shown rape in general as a crime has a huge window for problems, not the least being the shame and humiliation suffered by the victim, and the general public distaste of the voyeurism involved in hearing all the salacious facts of the case. More on that in a minute.

“But couple that with the extraordinary powers of the prosecution within the Japanese judiciary for dealing with criminal suspects (default mode being presumption of guilt), and you have even more potential for miscarriages of justice.

“Case in point is Mr Idubor, but he is not alone in his being potentially set up to take the fall by the police.

“Here’s a certified example of the Toyama police doing exactly that in another rape case, according to the Asahi Shinbun, May 22, 2007…”
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The Asahi article, plus another article in The Economist about a recent rape case at Duke University (which went haywire due to an unfettered District Attorney, until the truth was outed by by a more assiduous press and more open jurisprudential system you won’t get in Japan), and an NPR interview about all the rape cases left uninvestigated in the US, despite tens of thousands of stored rape evidence kits–all part of a discussion of what happens when you give a prosecutor too much power: injustice. And Japan has unfettered power in its prosecution in spades.

The conclusion to this discussion I offer:
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“In any case, rape is a particularly hazardous crime to take on. Assume guilt and people assume the worst did happen. Assume innocence and the victim might not get served by the system properly.

“But there’s a good reason why innocence (even, constitutionally, in Japan) is the default assumption–fewer innocents get sent up. Pity Japan’s criminal justice system doesn’t buy into that, regardless of whatever’s been written in the Constitution.”
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Have a read at
http://www.debito.org/?p=581

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5) FUJIMORI FINALLY GETS HIS–EXTRADITION BACK TO PERU

I’ve, quite frankly, had a perfectly rotten past couple of weeks, for reasons I won’t get into here. But I have to admit, the highlight of last week was this:

A wanted former dictator, er, president of Peru finally got his.

After buggering off to Japan in 2000, resigning his office, claiming Japanese nationality (in fact, using it as a cloak against extradition), swanning off back to Chile in 2005 to try and contest a Peruvian election, then trying even to get elected in Japan last July, Alberto Fujimori, in my view a megalomaniac in the mold of Napoleon and Mexico’s Santa Anna (both of whom kept popping up after exile trying to restore themselves back to power; Fujimori has clearly been less successful than they), has finally been ruled an undesirable (“on human rights and corruption charges”) by Chile’s Supreme Court. He was extradited to Peru last Sunday.

More background on Fujimori why he matters to Debito.org here.
http://www.debito.org/?p=120

About bloody time. Give him his day in court. Let’s see what the trial brings out.

Here’s the AP’s view of what’s next for Fujimori in Peru, blogged at Debito.org:
http://www.debito.org/?p=590

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6) NOVA EIKAIWA FINALLY GETS THEIRS–ADVICE FOR TEACHERS IN LIMBO

The Japan Times Community Page last Tuesday offered a wonderful roundup of the sinking ship of the Eikaiwa Industry that is NOVA. After years of employee abuses, then customer abuses, the company has not only been punished by the GOJ, but also is in such a financial mess that they can’t even pay their employees promptly or properly anymore.

The JT’s writeup and advice to employees in trouble from people know know the labor laws here:
http://www.debito.org/?p=593

JT’s call for employee testimonials via Debito.org, and links to stories of the steady death of Japan’s largest private-sector employer of non-Japanese, at:
http://www.debito.org/?p=583

Even more data from Trans Pacific Radio, which also did a lot of groundwork on this issue (and has been urging its readers to jump ship for months now), at
http://www.transpacificradio.com/2007/09/27/another-tale-from-the-inside-of-nova/
http://www.transpacificradio.com/2007/09/20/do-you-work-for-nova-tpr-wants-to-talk-to-you-asap/

This is the NJ community at its best, and testament to the emerging power of blogs as social movement organizer in Japan.

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7) YOMIURI: FIRST TENET OF PM ABE’S “MORAL EDUCATION” SHELVED

Yomiuri reports that one tenet of former PM Abe’s “Beautiful Country” master plan has been withdrawn since his resignation–that of upgrading moral education.
(More on that from The Economist and Japan Times last January at
http://www.debito.org/?p=157 )

Good. I opposed this because these sorts of things, such as teaching (and grading) “patriotism”, would leave Japan’s children of international roots in a bind. How can they “love” Japan “properly”, in a way quantifiably gradable? Officially-sanctioned identity education is a very difficult subject to broach indeed (and it is by no means limited to Japan).

But forcing young students to “love” Japan anyway (and having their future possibly affected by bad grades for it) says more about the political elite and their families who would support this sort of policy, believing love and morality can be thusly commanded.

Anyway, the article on this follows:

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Plan to upgrade moral education to official subject shelved
The Yomiuri Shimbun Sep. 20, 2007

http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/dy/national/20070920TDY02006.htm

The Central Council for Education, an advisory panel to the education, science and technology minister, has decided to shelve a plan to upgrade moral education to an official subject in a revision of the official school curriculum guidelines scheduled for this fiscal year, according to sources.

The council concluded that “morals are related to the heart and mind and cannot be knocked into children via a textbook.”…
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Rest at http://www.debito.org/?p=584

Oddly enough, FYI:

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Education spending renders Japan second to last in OECD
Japan Times/Kyodo News September 20, 2007

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http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20070920a3.html
http://www.debito.org/?p=584#comment-74263

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… and finally…
8) STARS AND STRIPES: KOREAN-STYLE ETHNIC DISCRIMINATION

Stars and Stripes Sept 6, 2007 has an article on what it’s like for international children in South Korea. A lot of the things reported (the ol’ “homogeneous society” chestnut) sound quite similar to what’s going on in Japan (understandibly, given their proximity and interlocking histories and cultures).

The most impressive points I got from the article were:

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“There are no laws that discriminate against or protect biracial citizens, but it’s almost impossible for them to get well-paying jobs because they look different. Many live in poverty because they weren’t able to get into universities or get good jobs, a cycle that left their children impoverished as well.”

“…biracial Koreans were banned from serving in the military until 2005.”

“The number of foreigners living in South Korea grew 158 percent over the past decade, and one million of the country’s 49 million residents are foreigners, according to the Ministry of Justice.”
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(which means 2 percent of the South Korean population is non-Korean, vs 1.6% of Japan’s, and is growing much faster than the NJ population in Japan).

Article at
http://www.debito.org/?p=576
Courtesy Dave Spector

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All for today. Thanks for reading!
Arudou Debito
Sapporo, Japan
www.debito.org, debito@debito.org
DEBITO.ORG NEWSLETTER SEPTEMBER 28, 2007 ENDS

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