TokyoFreePress
      An interactive and taboo-free journalism based in Japan




     
 
Welcome to TokyoFreePress Sunday, March 26 2017 @ 06:39 AM JST
   

Something too hard to get used to

旅に病んで夢は枯野をかけ廻る
- 松尾芭蕉

Stricken on a journey/My dreams go wandering round/Withered fields
- A haiku piece of Matsuo Basho totally spoiled by the second-rate translator named Donald Keene.


Bloody May Day of 1952 in
front of the Imperial Palace


Anpo uprising of 1959
Relatively honest people surrounding me often say one thing and do quite another. I know this is a fallout of the essentially seamless transition of power from the Shogunate to the Emperor, to MacArthur, and then back to the Emperor now disguised as a mere "symbol of national unity." Each time, the Japanese sang a different tune but all along they have remained practically unchanged. It takes you a lifetime to become used to these sick people.

On May 1, 1952, three days after a nominal sovereignty was returned to Japan in San Francisco, the sheepish people, who had never rebelled against Emperor Hirohito or the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers, staged one of the only two major uprisings in modern Japanese history, called the Bloody May Day. True, it was bloody by the Japanese standards, but in fact, it was yet another ritual that signaled a change of the tunes. The new one was to herald the arrival of the Cold War in this country.

Seven years later I graduated from university amid the nationwide turmoil over the Japan-U.S. security treaty, known as Anpo Toso. Needless to say the anti-treaty students joined by some unionized workers were fighting a proxy war as puppets manipulated by the Soviet Union and the new-born China. The distinctive feature of Anpo Toso was that the heads of most factions were future business leaders such as Seiji Tsutsumi, a scion of the Seibu conglomerate.

These guys would later lay the groundwork for the rapid rise of Japan Inc., and more importantly for its ultimate collapse in 1990. It's no accident that Anpo Toso ended up in a total failure. Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi, an undercover agent of the CIA, signed the treaty on January 19, 1960 in Washington DC.

Almost 53 years later, I hear the same old blues which now sounds more like a cheap funeral march. With this tune lingering on in my ears as if it's specifically meant for me, now I'm desperately fighting back against the second round of executions of the attachment order to seize 30% of my pension annuities.

Yesterday I had a bitter experience with "AK", the wife of DK who helped me, financially and morally, out of the jam caused by the first round attacks from the city hall. AK is a staff writer at Kanagawa Shimbun. The Yokohama-based newspaper publisher is known for its relatively impartial news coverage despite its close affiliation with mainstream news organizations and its membership in the information cartel known as Nihon Kisha Kurabu or Japan Press Club. I thought it would help me recoup lost ground if AK could influence the editor to take up my case against the municipality. Obviously hardships senior citizens are going through are his favorite topic.

After I updated her on the recent situation, however, she concluded she didn't want to write a cover story on my constitutional battle. The reason she declined my offer was that I am primarily at fault for the mess, after all, because I should have paid on time these income-unrelated taxes since I left the employment of SAP Japan in 2006. Then I would have avoided piling up tax bills this high. She added that several years ago her family of three could somehow get by with her salary, which was as small as my pension (I doubt it), when her husband was temporarily out of work. In short, I deserve all this suffering and all I need is to impose austerity and discipline on myself.

AK really let me down. At the onset of the battle, she was enthusiastically giving me cheers although they somehow sounded noncommittal. Has she changed her mind? Not at all. She remains the same, half-awake and half-honest person I've known for years.

I was too tired to repeat my lecture on the Constitution to the youngish reporter, but my cause all comes down to my commonsense interpretation of Chapter 3 of the fundamental law. Its Article 30 says, "The people shall be liable to taxation as provided by law," while Article 25 of the same chapter stipulates, "All people shall have the right to maintain the minimum standards of wholesome and cultured living." My points are that in this chapter the rights and duties of the people are defined purely on a reciprocal basis and that the standards for "cultured living" can't have remained unchanged since 1947 when the now-hollowed-out Constitution was enacted. Those were the days when we were fed with food stuff even the swine wouldn't appreciate very much.

Also I felt insulted when AK treated me like I am an uneducated, unskilled and inexperienced 22-year-old, while in fact I am a 76-year-old with a 50-year-long career behind him. I thought I have lost another friend because now it's evident she is one of those Japanese news reporters who are only good at playing the tune of the time. I only hope this won't affect the friendship between her husband DK and me in any way.

Back on February 21, the day my last girlfriend turned 29, I reluctantly let go of her because her parents had started urging her to get married before she misses the "marriageable" age. I don't care too much if the number of my friends, who wholeheartedly empathize with my way of thinking, living and now dying, remains very small. But I do care if it gets even smaller because in my definition of the words, it's an auditory hallucination if nobody but myself and a couple of others can hear this song about a free Northeast Asia to emerge after the coming collapse of the evil American Empire.

Overnight the systolic reading of my blood pressure has shot up to a critical level (190mm Hg.) Now I think I need some rest. ·

Story Options

Trackback

Trackback URL for this entry: http://www.TokyoFreePress.com/trackback.php?id=20121021212228447

No trackback comments for this entry.
Something too hard to get used to | 4 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Things so hard to get used to
Authored by: samwidge on Monday, October 22 2012 @ 09:38 AM JST

I like your expression, "Relatively honest." I think that fits all of us. Among Christians, we talk about it in a variety of ways like "Original Sin." I'll bet that Buddhists and Hindi have a concept like it. Your use of "Relatively honest" unites all.

Another of your terms that teaches me is, " proxy war as puppets." That says volumes. That alone is worth two books to me. In the United States we are indeed manipulated in "proxy wars as puppets." Unions, extremist environmental groups, youth-controlled media all manipulate us and each other.

With what I hope is relative honesty, I suppose that we are all manipulating somebody through someone else. We are all cheating somebody through someone else. Everybody is Napoleon to one extent or another. Nobody is more nearly honest than any other. At the smallest level, a baby manipulates his mother who, in turn, manipulates his father. We have the ability to observe and therefore the ability to understand the value of this.

At the largest level, we are completely oblivious to the manipulators of nations and ethnic groups. Nobody seems to have the ability to understand this, perhaps not even the manipulators themselves.

Most manipulation is benign.

For me, it is a truism that the world cannot work without manipulation. It works best when we are aware and when we continue to function kindly through the worst of manipulation.

I have been drawn into the American Republican Party mechanism. Adherents are generally just nice folks who wish to understand and express concerns. Perhaps there are also those Republicans who manipulate. Honestly, I have not observed Republican-based manipulation on any meaningful scale. (Manipulation of masses is a large but hidden field of study. Worthwhile, too.)

I hope to speak before a few of the Republican service groups and teach how to present to audiences. The people I feel are most "reasonably honest" are miserable presenters. That is a bad combination!

When I present, I will graphically illustrate the EPA Card Trick, a magician's illusion that has "Mesmerized" millions for nearly 100 years. America's Environmental Protection Agency uses the technique to falsely claim that mines put metal in the ground and water. The cruelty of this "unreasonably dishonest" illusion puts us at each others' throats! The willingness of the masses to believe is heartbreaking.

Though everybody manipulates somebody, I am hoping that these gullible people will reduce their gullibility and see through attacks against them and the things they stand for. I have no intention of encouraging anybody to manipulate unfairly (Bloody May Day).

I cannot cleanse the population because I am innately unclean. I can only hope to shave the foot of a table leg so that the furniture will cease wobbling.

Things so hard to get used to
Authored by: Y.Yamamoto on Monday, October 22 2012 @ 09:48 AM JST

samwidge,

Thanks for your very interesting observation of man's manipulative behaviors.

Yu Yamamoto
Things so hard to get used to
Authored by: Diogenes on Monday, October 22 2012 @ 02:52 PM JST
Your "AK" is typical of how ignorant most citizens are of their constitutions and constitutional law. Laws are passed in most countries without regard to whether they violate the basic foundation of law--the constitution. It's gotten so bad in the US, that even Rand Paul has expressed outrage that no one reads the bills that they are required to vote on. Some special interest group writes a bill, it gets given to one their owned politicians, and is voted on without being read. This must be the case in Japan as well. AK has lived too long in this state of deception and illegality to know that there is something radically wrong. She sounds like Baudelaire's three men and the chimera on their backs. They just got used to it embedding it's claws into their flesh and hanging on to them like a parasite.
Things so hard to get used to
Authored by: Y.Yamamoto on Monday, October 22 2012 @ 08:18 PM JST


Diogenes:

If I remember it correctly, the late Dr. Paul was once saying he would have repealed tens of thousands of laws enacted since the beginning of the year. This is enormous. The "productivity" of the Japanese lawmakers are 100-times lower.

When it comes to the constitutionality of these laws, Japanese legislators never ever think about violating MacArthur's Constitution. Reason: They know something other than written laws governs this country, and that the postwar Constitution never superseded the 13-century-old Constitution promulgated by Shotoku Prince.

In the last 65 years the government, the media, the general public have been playing, singing and dancing to the same tune composed by MacArthur, but in reality they still stay with the state of shamans. It's hard to tell, but I'm inclined to say your country is slightly better.

And thank you for your exquisite Chimera analogy. It's very accurate.

Yu Yamamoto