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Welcome to TokyoFreePress Wednesday, March 01 2017 @ 01:45 AM JST
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Resonance with a Siberian tigress


Anna’s husband seems to be a photographer. But I hope he would give me a permission for using this lovely picture here.

Last evening I attended one of those meetups held in this neighborhood heeding Jake’s kind suggestion. I'd felt I was badly in need of an intelligent and cheerful companion to overcome the geriatric depression which kept worsening not without good reasons.

There I stumbled on a young Slavic lady wearing a red sweater. Her bright eyes somehow reminded me of a Siberian tigress, a friendly one. She fully met my criteria.

Her name is Anna. She and I talked for more than an hour over glasses of oolong tea. I was impressed to find out she always had something to say more than just yes or no on the wide range of topics, from Vladimir Putin, to Joseph Stalin, to Andrei Panin, to linguistics (she’s at least quadrilingual,) to music of all genres.

As I wrote in my blog late last year, I admire the Russian people at large for their undaunted optimism.

If you watch a Russian movie or read a Russian novel, you will almost always come across a particularly Russian line spoken to someone in trouble:

Всё будет хорошо.

This sentence is literally translated like “Everything will be alright.” But in a typical Russian context, it means something else. When an American says these words, it’s little more than an empty promise or a lip service he is good at because he doesn’t know exactly how it will turn out OK, if ever it will, unless he is the author of the story. On the other hand, when a Russian says these words, he knows it MUST be alright because each individual citizen in Russia is the author of his/her own life.

Those who still remain prisoners of ideologies such as democracy or totalitarianism will never find it agreeable. But this is a deliberate statement I want to make after dealing with the predominantly-American audience of my blog for more than 12 years. · read more (13 words)
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A low-angle view from a virtually bed-ridden blogger: Our ancestors shouldn't have opted for erect bipedalism

Recently I came across a young Russian lady named Zara who is willing to teach me her native language at a token price that buys her a little more than a cup of coffee and the subway tickets. You guys will think I have found some time to kill in the waiting room of Grim Reaper's office. But that isn't the case.

To me, learning any language can't be a goal in itself. This is especially true this late in life. A language is nothing more than a tool with which to conceptualize a raw idea into a communicable thought so a new resonance can be created every time you want to share it with others.

On Sunday one month ago, I was in a hurry to be on time for Zara's private lesson braving the stormy weather which hit this windy port city of Yokohama that afternoon.

It's when I was jaywalking toward the bus stop that all of a sudden a gusty wind estimated to have reached the velocity of 35 meters/second, or 78 miles/hour, violently thrust me from behind.

After taking several faltering steps forward, I fell down flat on the road like a frog run over by a car. There were at least dozens of pedestrians. Most of them stopped to have a look. Some of the witnesses may have videoed the scene but not a single one of them came to my rescue or even dialed 119 (Japan's 911.)

The Japanese are known to be the world's most compassionate and caring people. In this close-knit nation everyone babysits or wet-nurses everyone else all the time even when there is no need to do so. But they make a 180-degree about-face at the slightest sign of self-respect and self-reliance on the part of someone in trouble. They not only turn a cold shoulder to him, but make every possible effort to see to it that he is subjected to a merciless punishment because that's what he deserves. Their overgenerous compassion and contrasting cruelty here are the flip sides of the same coin.

Historically they have been victimized, rather than rewarded, for their unconditional allegiance to their society. That's why these conformists always gang up on the wrong people. Especially they tend to take it out on independent-minded individuals like me. I'm inclined to call their twisted cold-heartedness sadism of the slave.

Maybe I was supposed to play the role of a poor Gregor Samsa hit by the apple his father throws at him. In fact, though, their empty but unmistakably hostile stare down at me made it look as though the tables had been turned on these dregs of humanity. I found myself looking back at them from the ground level as if it was these insidious bastards that had metamorphosed into Kafkaesque vermin.

For a while I struggled, in vain, to get back on my feet. It's a couple of minutes later that a man in his late-30s or early-40s pulled over his SUV to the shoulder of the road and rushed out of it to do what Mencius expected any individual to do instinctively when he spots a toddler on the verge of falling into a well. If I remember it correctly, the famous Confucian went so far as to say if you don't have this instinctive empathy, you aren't a human being anymore.

While helping me up, he asked me, "Are you OK? You may have hit your head on the pavement. Shall I give you a ride to a nearby hospital?" All I could say was: "It's very nice of you. Thank you so much. But I think I'm OK now."

I stopped short of telling him the truth. I would have confused him if I had said: "I was not OK at all. Even before the accident I had long been far from OK physically because those who are surrounding me are not OK mentally."

The next day I visited my friend Hiroshi Shiono to ask him how to measure my blood pressure with the left arm totally disabled. He is the only doctor I can trust.

Although he isn't an orthopedic specialist, the moment he looked at my swollen wrist, he said, "Forget about blood pressure for now and visit an orthopedist right away. I'm sure some bones have been fractured there."

On doctor's instruction, the lovely and bright ladies at the reception desk, who are also my good friends for years, quickly made a web search to find me a nearby orthopedic clinic. One of them who bothered to come out from the office to keep the door open for me while I was stepping out said, "Good luck with your new doctor." They all know I am an extremely demanding patient.

As I wrote in the above-linked post, when I terminated my contract with the German software company ten years ago, I decided to opt out of Japan's medical and nursing-care system, entirely and for good, because it's cartelized from tip to toe by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, Japan Medical Association, Japan Federation of Medical Workers Unions, pharmaceutical companies, medical equipment manufacturers, media, and the most important of all, tens of millions of juicy patients.

More specifically, I had five compelling reasons, one of them being the fact that arrogance on the part of doctors always goes over the top.

Traditionally outpatients, and inpatients alike, are so submissive to authoritative directives from Sensei, as a doctor is addressed here as if he were a deity. The physician, for his part, takes it for granted that it's him, not his patient himself, who has the final say on whether a treatment is needed at all, let alone what kind of treatment it should be. This is why I'd crossed out practically all medical practitioners before I somehow found my way to Dr. Shiono's clinic four years ago.

To me the only part of doctors' job which is irreplaceable with a machine is triage, even outside of a typical emergency room situation. A quack who is unable to triage is nothing but a ripoff because he can't translate a diagnostic observation into a valid prognostic prescription that gives the patient two or more specific options for treatment and medication.

Aside from getting prepared for the same old norm of "3-hour wait for 3-minute consultation," I was readying myself on my way to the clinic to have to educate the chief surgeon on how to deal with a human being who has lived his life in his own way and now is going to die his death in his own way.

Looking at the radiographs, the chief surgeon explained: "Here you can see intra-articular fractures." I asked: "How long does it take to fix them? And more important, how much am I supposed to pay? Remember I'm uncovered." He started to size me up like the owner of a five-star sushi restaurant pondering how far the customer can swallow within his expense account.

"Maybe it costs you several hundred thousand yen over a few month period." He continued: "Our standard practice is to send you to a better-equipped hospital we are affiliated with for closer examinations and a full-fledged surgery. Of course we take you back to help you with the postoperative rehab."

He looked astounded as if he hadn't heard such outrageous words from anyone before when I said, "I would need to undergo a brain surgery before paying twice the amount of my monthly pension just to get the broken bone reconnected. And don't tell me my 80-year-old limbs could be fully recovered. They had long been on the verge of disassembly before I sustained the injury yesterday."

Showing him my left knee which was still bleeding, I added: "Just for instance I deliberately refrained from showing them to you because I think I can live with these bruises left untreated until the last day of my life."

I continued pressingly:

"So what would my option 2 be like?"

Obviously he had no Plan B prepared beforehand. But he reluctantly offered an alternative plan which he termed "joint preservation method" as it came off the top of his head. Actually it was nothing more than nonprofessional, and perhaps unprofessional, services bundled together to expedite the self-healing process. There is no role to be played by a highly-paid professional.

When I asked him how much this would cost me, the chief surgeon quoted it at Suman-yen (some 30-50K yen.) This was also outrageous because all he would need to make available to me are an aggregate 2-3 man-hours from:
● anyone who has the power to yank my forearm so the fragments of the broken bone fit together once again,
● an unskilled nurse who can immobilize my forearm with a "Schiene" (splint) and bandage and,
● a senile man licensed to operate an outdated X-Ray machine.

When I asked him to write me a diagnostic/prognostic certificate, which would cost me 2,160 yen, the orthopedist revised his verbal quotation to 100K. His excuse: "I intentionally doubled the estimate because I thought the higher the price, the more advantage you'll get if and when you show the certificate to the city hall."

In fact it turned out this trick didn't work for tax mitigation purposes because these tax-collecting zombies at the city hall still remained the prisoners of the 522-year-old, single-entry, cash-based, pre-Pacioli system. They said, "We can't tell if we will comply until you show us the actual amount you've paid."

In 1494 Luca Pacioli, who was a mentor and close collaborator of Leonardo da Vinci, and thus the real central figure of the Italian Renaissance, thoroughly systematized the double-entry, accrual-based accounting method as something one revolution or a big evolutionary step away from the dark ages.

That's how I had to settle for option 2 as it was proposed.

The main thing is how you live your life and die your death like a human being. But in any event you can't get around the money issue, or more specifically the affordability issue.

The real problem, however, is the fact that it's totally useless to discuss them with these thinking-disabled apes on either side of the Pacific.
In the quadrennial farce currently going on in the Planet of the Apes, for instance, one of the major concerns for voters seems to be whether to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, a.k.a. Obamacare. And yet not a single individual has pointed out they have to define the word affordability, first and foremost, in the context of the real life because otherwise they always end up playing an empty word game.

I think only when you can buy something that exclusively makes your life worth living, you should use this word. On the other hand when you buy something essential for your mere subsistence, affordability can never be an issue.

It's primarily out of curiosity about his criteria for affordability that I sent a mail to my ex-son. Admittedly, though, I wouldn't have had any reason to decline it if he had offered me some assistance such as a bridge financing for the medical cost. But as I had expected, the sadistic slave dis not offer anything to his former father, not even a single lip service like, "I sympathize with you."

He just wrote back: "If you expect something from me, you should agree to a precondition I might spell out then." He didn't specify his condition certainly because he couldn't. The only thing I knew he had in mind is an absurd delusion that I'm doubly suffering, first from the physical pain and then from the consequence of my decision to stay away from the "mandatory" medical and nursing-care insurance.

The truth of the matter, however, is that if I were to take out what tens of millions of gullible Japanese are duped into believing is an insurance policy, I would be paying an annual premium of 306K yen. This should mean that with 70% of the exorbitant medical cost of 100K-500K "subsidized" by the government, I would recover my premium only on the most "optimistic" assumptions that I sustain an injury of the same magnitude almost every year, or more than four times a year.

From the last half of the 1960s through the mid-1970s, I learned quite a lot from my counterparts and dotted-line bosses in New York about business administration and computer science. Among other things, I learned from them about risk management and actuarial science as the project manager who was assigned to implement Japan's first full-fledged corporate pension plan in the wake of the enactment of ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974) in the U.S.

Those were the days Americans still had a lot to teach me. Although I didn't want to be a qualified actuary, they helped me become familiarized with the basics of actuarial matters which would all come down to this equation:

C+I=B+E

where C, I, B and E stand for Contributions, Income, Benefits and Expenses respectively.

My ex-son is intellectually too lazy to imagine how hard his former father had to study to become a professional, if he was always womanizing at the same time.

Now he is one of those thinking-disabled, immature grownups who can't read, let alone write, a message any longer than 140 characters. But to make his short text long enough for communication between human beings, the bastard wanted to say: "Who cares? After all you deserve all this predicament because you have disowned us just because we don't defy the basic rules of this community and ditched my poor mother just because she had brought us up into people persons that you call conformists."

I didn't respond because I knew there's nothing in common between our sets of criteria for affordability and priorities.

I divorced his mother 35 years ago. At that time I was forced by her and her father to pay at least 40 million yen in cash and real estate. My ex-father-in-law was a small-time yakuza, previously peddling illegal substance. And now his metal-scrapping business was on the verge of going under. They said the money would be used mainly for the education of the kids. But years later I learned they deliberately punked me.

On top of the initial alimony, I spent an aggregate several millions during the subsequent 20 years especially to support my biological elderly son and his mother who was habitually getting her hand on the cash in her employer's safe until the next time the auditor would come in.

Eventually my ex-son dropped out of the School of Science and Technology at Gunma University because the guy thought it wouldn't be affordable anymore to go on pursuing his studies of information technology.

After he dropped out of school, the owner of a micro-company, who had been his high school senior, hired him at a fire-sale price. But the moment he got a job there, his maternal granduncle asked him to cosign as the guarantor when applying for a 15-million bank loan. The borrower had no intention to repay from the beginning. As a result, my ex-son had to file for personal bankruptcy several years ago after a protracted litigation.

The guy didn't learn a lesson from all this in part because he didn't have to. If he still learned anything, he rediscovered a magic to turn an unaffordable life into an affordable one. Every Japanese knows how it works.

To that end he first landed a position at the above-mentioned dad-and-son company which is actually a second-layer subcontractor of a major construction firm, or firms. Since then he has been doing more harm than good to his poor employer. At one time, he was named the prime suspect by the police and the owner when cash was stolen from the company safe although they didn't know his mother had been doing the same thing habitually.

Last Friday I took a long train ride to have a clandestine meeting with the owner of the company. I just wanted to find out why my ex-son hasn't been sued or fired by now.

He confided to me that the debt balance of his company is 70 million whereas its capital stock is as small as 10 million. A mortgage must have been placed on his private property, But that doesn't make the company's balance sheet shape any better. The owner seems to be too ignorant to understand the serious implication of a negative equity situation. He just insinuated that his company would be much better off if he were able to rid it of my biological son.

My ex-son can't read company books if they are kept with the double-entry accounting method as stipulated by the Commercial Code. But at the end of our meeting, I had an impression that the incompetent company owner is being blackmailed by the rogue I carelessly fathered over some irregularities and all he can do with that is to neutralize the blackmailer in one way or the other.

The next thing my offspring did to the same end when he was in his late-30s is to get married to a senior divorcee who had been kicked out by her former husband and child, or children. By that time he seemed to have decided to put all the blame on me for his miserable life, or make me always subjected to the severest possible punishment. To him this broad was an ideal mate because the surest way to unduly punish his parent was to punish himself.

Soon after the marriage, or possibly prior to it, she developed a "refractory illness" named CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome) and became wheelchair-bound. By now it's evident her disease is 120% psychogenic. i.e. totally fake. But nevertheless her husband succeeded in getting her a handsome disability pension. As my son admitted at that time, the annual amount is more than 2 million yen, a little smaller than my pension, whereas the premiums she had paid from her paychecks were, at most, 10% of mine. In this weird kleptocracy of the people, by the people, for the people, they call it income redistribution.

Thanks to these nanny-state measures, they now find everything they want to afford more or less affordable. For one thing it's more than just affordable for them to feed their 2 Pomeranians with decent food their ex-father can't afford. This is essentially how most Japanese adults make their worthless lives affordable.

It's a couple of years ago I last visited their place. While pretending to listen to me, my son held tight one of his castrated dogs and concentrated on doing something to it. Then he looked my way with a creepy grin to show me the dog's penis which he'd caused to erect. This is his way of doing a symbolic masturbation to make up for the sexual unavailability of his mate, or incompetence of his own.

This is when I finally concluded I shouldn't have fathered him, or any child for that matter, in this rotten country. Most Japanese fathers cherish their offspring as if they were his doppelgangers. But since my reproduction activity was solely driven by the instinct for creative evolution, I never told my kids specifically which way to go. That's why they kept complaining I was intellectually too demanding.

To me it was a Long Goodbye which kept tormenting me almost for four decades.

On my part nothing is readily affordable.

All I can do is to save 1,180 yen every time the bandage the unskilled nurse wrapped around my injured arm loosens up by turning to either of the two kind women who have spontaneously volunteered to redo it on behalf of the nurse.

Last Saturday, the day after I visited the company owner, I met up with DK, one of the few male friends of mine. at a nearby coffee shop. I just wanted to talk about something Japanese macaques or American apes never want to talk about. We discussed a wide range of topics from music to creative evolution for more than 3 hours.

But when saying goodbye in front of the apartment building where I live, DK casually said, "Please feel free to let me know whenever you need a financial assistance." I know I should refrain from accepting his offer so lightly. But I'm afraid I can't rule out the possibility that I turn to him as the last resort once again.

Cancers are a different story. It would go against my principle to fight a battle, whether it's winnable or unwinnable, just for a mere subsistence. By the same token, I wouldn't allow anyone to tamper with my corpse. This is the last bastion of my dignity.

I might change my mind if and when the treatment by stimulus-triggered acquisition of pluripotency technology became affordable to everyone. But now it's abundantly clear that chances are remote for STAP cells to be commoditized in the next millennium. As I wrote almost two years ago, Yoshiki Sasai, the mentor of the ambitious stem-cell biologist named Haruko Obokata, was murdered, and subsequently Obokata herself was stripped of her doctorate by the despicable Nobel laureate named Shinya Yamanaka, et al. That's the end of the story.

The most serious problem facing me for now is the fact that there are very few "little ordinary things that everyone ought to do" but can't with one hand almost disabled.

As a fallout, I've been even more confined to bed, or what used to be a futon mattress to be more precise, despite the further worsening of sleep fragmentation. I didn't take a low-angle shot at the onlookers because my camera in the backpack had been thrown out of my reach at that time. But actually I didn't have to because their vacant eyes only filled with unforgettable hostility have haunted me ever since.

The other day when I was lying awake as I do most of the time, a funny idea flashed into my mind. I said to myself:

"Our ancestors, be it 'Australopithecines' or any other genus, made a serious mistake several million years ago when they opted for erect bipedalism. If we were still crawling around on our four limbs, we would be able to move more smoothly and we might have learned to run at the speed of 60 miles/hour like the cheetah. As a result we would never take a tumble when we were blown by a gusty wind of 78 miles/hour."

Take it easy, though. You needn't get on your hindfeet to discuss serious issues such as which bathroom a transgender ape should use.

It's been said they started practicing bipedalism primarily because they wanted to make tools and handle them with their forelegs. But did they have specific purposes in mind for which they were going to use these tools? Of course they didn't. So it was like putting the cart before the horse.

Time and again I have argued in this website the claim that Japan has successfully civilized, or modernized, herself since the 1850s is totally false. I don't think I was wrong. The Japanese have imported the Judeo-Christian civilization under the slogan of wakon yosai, translated as "Japanese spirit coupled with Western learning." In other words, they turned the relationship between means and end upside down from the beginning.

As a result this cultural wasteland is now inhabited by tens of millions of Samurais wearing a suit, which they call a Savile Row (to be pronounced Sebiro) and feudal serfs in jeans.

But now at the sight of the yawning gap between technologies and quality of life everywhere, I have realized the perpetual and pervasive inversion of means and end has its real origin in the fact that our distant ancestors started practicing erect bipedalism so prematurely. · read more (65 words)
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Myth - or math - about genealogical roots

I have already told my audience why I disowned my biological elder son. I could put an end to our feud, that stemmed from his strong antipathy toward the ex-husband of his mother for being intellectually demanding since his childhood, when I said, "I apologize for having fathered you guys at all. This is the greatest mea culpa of my life."

There's nothing to add except that breaking-up was hard to do like everywhere else. Since I have no tangible assets carrying a yen value possibly to hand down to him or anyone else, that's the end of the story.

As for the younger one, it was a lot easier. I'd already been too tied up with his elder brother to expect him to grow into a mature man wiping off all the influence from his maternal grandfather who turned out to be a former small-time yakuza gangster and his entire clan which was under the influence of the Soka Gakkai cult.

Eventually I lost both.

Twelve years or so ago the younger one married an obnoxious divorcee. At that time he changed his surname to save his stepson from suffering the stigma at school. Soon twin sons were born to them. I was kind of forced to meet them when they were around one year old but afterward I kept declining to see them again primarily because in Japan giving at least 5K yen, preferably ten times as much to be spent for crap is the only important role a grandparent is supposed to play every time he sees his young grandchild.

This past summer my son started to insist all over again that I should meet his twin sons during their summer break. He said: "Now my 11-year-old kids seem to be in the early stage of identity crisis. They are anxious to know about the 25% of their biological roots." I complied because there was no reason to decline. But I didn't fail to warn him to tell them in advance that I am the weirdest man they have ever met and they should not expect a single buck from me.

At first I couldn't tell one twin from the other. So before the lunch I "interviewed" them, one by one. I handed each of them a simple questionnaire to make it easy for them to introduce themselves before my digital camera. Later I uploaded the videos to share them with a limited audience.

After they introduced themselves to me, I tried a quiz on my son and his kids. I said: "If you guys 'think' I am a 25% ea of you kids, you are completely wrong. Believe me, I'm nobody's part. To begin with how many ancestors do you 'think' you have?" Neither my biological son nor his kids could answer. They didn't understand why I raised such an unusual question in the first place.

I explained: "As you know, some of my ancestors, i.e. our ancestors, were ninjas by occupation who served the Tokugawa Shogunate which was in power from 1603 to 1867. If you use the Excel exponential function (2^(2015-1603)/20) on an assumption that 20 years make one generation, you will find out we are 2 million ancestors away from the first ninja even if you forget about collateral ones.

"Moreover," I continued, "there's no reason to stop at the first ninja if you really want to trace your roots. I'm afraid you guys still believe, deep down in your hearts, in the downright lie that Japan was founded on February 11, 660 BC by the son of the Sun Goddess. Then you should know you have an astronomical number of ancestors. If my Excel calculation wasn't wrong, it's 21,778,071,482,940,100,000,000,000,000 trillion."

They were shocked but obviously not by the number itself. In the face of a frightening abyss, they were totally at a loss over what to make of the arithmetic.

To them an "identity crisis" is nothing but a rite of passage where they are supposed to pledge an unconditional allegiance to the homogeneous society that embraces the trilogy of faiths. That is why they didn't understand "identity," "root" or any other borrowed word had to be defined more precisely than the stupid writer named Alex Haley did in his 1976 bestselling book titled "Roots: The Saga of an American Family."

Actually I was playing devil's advocate as usual. What I was getting at could have been summarized like this:

One's sense of identity is an emotional attachment and/or an intellectual resonance felt voluntarily (not obligatorily) and spontaneously (not biologically) toward specifically portrayable figure(s) in the huge family tree.

A larger group of faceless people such as mankind, male, female, working class, capitalists, the stateless, the handicapped, liberal, conservative, etc. has nothing, whatsoever, to do with it.

The only thing that pleasantly surprised me was the answer the younger twin (photo) gave to my banal but tricky question: "What do you want to be doing when you become an adult?" The older one answered without hesitation, "I want to be a policeman." But his younger brother declared, after mumbling for a while, "I haven't made up my mind on that yet."

I was really impressed because this is an utterly atypical way an 11-year-old would answer the standard question. Most every kid answers it without hesitation because he knows it doesn't really matter whether he is fully committed to his "dream" to become a cop, an astronaut, a professional athlete, an artist, a TV personality, or anything else. In fact, though, you can't seriously commit yourself to anything until you find out who you are, i.e. your identity.

It is the same thing that Henri Bergson exquisitely analogized as a "canvas which the ancestor passes on for his descendant to put his own original embroidery."

I was going to tell them a chimp can recognize itself in the mirror but it isn't concerned a bit about its identity. At that time my son and his elder son quickly sent me a clear signal that they didn't want to listen to my lecture on identity. So I stopped there to concentrate on the free lunch.

Back home, I started to write a followup letter to my son to tell him that I was really impressed by his younger son's answer and that as his principal educator he should try hard to protect him against incessant indoctrination or counter-indoctrination the boy is subjected to at school or everywhere else. But on second thought, I said to myself that it would be totally useless. After all I am his biological parent who miserably failed to cultivate his thinking ability.

In the letter I wanted to send a link to the video embedded at the bottom of this post to explain how geese are imprinted almost at birth. Certainly he would have said, "Don't worry, father. We are not geese, but human beings."

In response I would have told him to watch the second video which clearly shows the chimp by far outperforms the human being at least in certain kinds of cognitive abilities. Anyone who believes we are superior to chimps should be able to tell exactly how. And if he "thinks" man does the thinking whereas an ape doesn't, he should be able to tell exactly what it is for man to think like man. I would have had to explain sorting out tons of information children are gathering on the web or anywhere else has nothing to do with the process of man's thinking.

I stopped short of completing the letter because after all I know it would be a total waste of time to repeat my thought-provoking lecture on the Digital Altar to someone who is already thinking-disabled like "well-educated" elements among my audience, let alone uneducated guys like my biological sons.

Recently I learned that a man named Stefan Molyneux has been talking about the merit of "deFOOing." (FOO stands for the Family of Origin.) He said all adult relationships should be voluntary and discretionary rather than obligatory in the context of his primary advocacy of a "Stateless Society." For a certain reason I prefer the words "Stateless Nation." I may come back on the issue of deFOOing if time permits. But for now I have concluded Molyneux's "thought" isn't worth studying more in depth. · read more (2 words)
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"Mr. Yamamoto, this is a downright tragedy"

WARNING: This post is rated NC-17.


   
If the Anglo-Saxon was, say 45 years of age in his development, in the sciences, the arts, divinity, culture, the Germans were quite as mature. The Japanese, however, in spite of antiquity measured by time, were in a tuitionary condition. Measured by the standards of modern civilization, they would be like a boy of twelve as compared with our development of 45 years.

-Douglas MacArthur

Up until late last year I was obsessed with a silly idea that I had to become fully prepared for my disappearance even though I have nothing tangible to hand down to my offspring. My Microsoft Outlook was filled with so many overdue tasks to catch up with that I hit the snooze button several times everyday.

In December I had to change my plan as my physical condition had worsened one step further.



In the last three and a half years I have been using MS Excel to closely monitor my systolic and diastolic blood pressure and some other cardiovascular readings. Not that I fear death. When I wrote I am immortal, I really meant it. The main reason I started the daily measurement, nonetheless, was because I wanted to keep to an absolute minimum the medical cost entailed in the prescriptions and occasional triage sessions with my friend Dr. Shiono.

I brought the most up-to-date chart to his office because I thought I could expect a reliable opinion from him on whether to take a simple electrocardiogram test. I didn't explicitly added that it was as far as I could barely afford. But well aware of my resolve to stay away from Japan's medical cartel, he just said that was the right thing to do.

Looking at the test result along with the MS chart, Dr. Shiono matter-of-factly said he saw an unmistakable sign of severe atrial fibrillation induced by a cardiac valvular disease and that most probably it was a matter of time it would develop into a fatal cerebral infarction. We didn't talk about a closer examination or an additional medication.

On my way home I said to myself: "With my days, or even hours and minutes, being numbered, I can't afford the time to tidy up all that mess resulting from my Diogenes Syndrome. Why should I bother to save someone from the daunting task I may otherwise leave behind? At any rate I need to wrap it up so I won't have to waste another life, which I don't actually believe, by asking the same stupid questions over and over about where I came from and what for. But after all wrapping up a life isn't packing up for a long journey."

My lifetime philosophy teacher used to say, "We are our choices," or "We are condemned to be free " When I look back on my trajectory, I must admit it was during a relatively short period of time that I could really change my path because committing myself to something or someone always meant finally closing the door to other opportunities. For the rest of the time I've been just reaping the harvest from my choice, or trying to come to terms with the adverse consequences inevitably entailed in it. This is why most individuals among my audience don't want to face the ontological reality of life.

For my part the first step to further going on is to admit what is done is done. And yet I still remain condemned to freely choose a way to sum up my own life. The most sticking point, therefore, lies with the fact that it's always too soon until it becomes too late when I try to deal with something while it's still going on.

Maybe I had expected someone to give me a little clue to the way out of the thorniest dilemma.

On the evening of May 3, the day which fell on the 68th anniversary of the enactment of the MacArthur Constitution, I came across a plump and short woman who was presumably in her mid-to-late 60s in a small eatery I frequent. She later introduced herself as a retired schoolteacher. Apparently she didn't have any kind of handset as far as I could see. But who knows? She could be just one of those technology-shy or IT-illiterate old people.

I was almost through with my humble dinner when I overheard her having a serious talk with two male Indians across a nearby table. She didn't have the faintest air of femininity as if she'd used it up in the course of indoctrinating her pupils while getting assimilated herself into the male-dominated system. I wouldn't have paid a closer attention to the broad if she hadn't been giving the Indians a history lecture on postwar Japan.

In everyday discourse in this country, people have a strong tendency to avoid sociopolitical issues. Not that they are too divided over them. On the contrary there is no real political contention in the nation of digital shamanism where professional priests singlemindedly pursue the traditional art of governing serfs (matsurigoto) through ritualized proceedings.

Although people who are already suffering senile dementia may still have a faint memory of their reverence for the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers, it had to be buried deep inside like your childhood trauma. As a result those afflicted with juvenile dementia know nothing about his contempt for their parents and grandparents.

I am a funny person whose favorite pastime is to give an ad hoc lecture, for free, to anyone who desperately need to avoid the tangible or intangible cost entailed in his blind obedience to social taboos. One of the reasons behind my peculiar habit is that I believe educating others is the only way to get educated. Galileo is believed to have said, "I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him."

A recent example was when I taught a small barbershop owner how to avoid being overexploited by the certified tax accountant she has long retained for her annual tax return. I said all she would need to do to save her a substantial part of retainer was to find herself an inexpensive software package built on Luca Pacioli's double-entry accounting method, because it would at least take care of the calculation of the consumption taxes (Japan's VAT) which was a little too tricky for anyone who is in the dark about accounting. I don't know if she has decided to heed my advice.

In a separate session we had soon after her husband had died, I gave her a tip on how the widow can evade an exorbitant donation demanded by her family temple under the name of Buddha to give her deceased husband a fancy posthumous name.

When passing by their table on my way to the checkout counter, I approached the lecturer to say: "I didn't particularly try to eavesdrop on your conversation, but can I tell you something about MacArthur just to set the record straight?"

Still confident in herself at that point, she generously said with a defenseless grin: "Why not? Just shoot."

In between she kept taking sips of wine while the younger Indian was holding the bottle with his right hand so he could quickly refill her glass whenever it was emptied. I later learned the students were merchants peddling pricey fashion items imported from their home country in the nearby shopping mall and that the lecturer was one of their most important customers. It was obvious that the Indians had been listening to their customer's lecture so attentively just out of the sense of obligation.

But when I jumped in, the Indians were quick enough in gathering my impromptu lecture would be an unavoidable step to further duping the sucker into buying an extra saree or two. One of them brought me an extra chair and a glass. I sat down and said, "Thanks, but I don't drink." But now they were all ears although I still didn't intend to give them a full-fledged lecture.

Throughout my career, I strove to develop a proprietary teaching method based on my belief that education is not indoctrination or counter-indoctrination, but training for practice of principled and creative thinking, no more, no less. When I finally came up with a unique way to effectively provoke creative thinking among my audience, I realized I'd been influenced to a great extent by management guru Peter F. Drucker (See NOTE)

NOTE: Time and again did Drucker warn his audience, in many different contexts, to the effect that giving a wrong answer to the right question is much better than giving the correct answer to a wrong question. He died 10 years ago today at the age of 95 but if someone had told him that an evil Jewish cabal (or al-Qaeda) was behind 9/11, he must have said: "Oh, is that so? But so what? At best that's giving the correct answer to a wrong question."

I've invariably tried it with my audiences, be it the MBA class of 2000 at the International University of Japan or business and IT professionals I was addressing on various occasions. To tell the truth, however, this method was so unconventional that it did not always prove very effective, even with the audience of my blog. When I said, "Let's think," people said more often than not that's what they were doing. But how can you think like man when you don't know exactly how to use the brain-shaped thing sitting at your top?

Since I saw no reason to make my lecture on the night of the Constitution Day an exception. I automatically applied my method although inside my brain I substituted the above-linked post for the syllabus. But before really getting started, I had to make a correction to her understanding of the general's remark.

I said: "You were saying that 70 years ago MacArthur said Japanese adults were all 12-years-old. But to be more precise, it was 64 years ago, May 5, 1951, that the repatriated SCAP recounted his experience with Japanese adults he'd dealt with. Actually he said they were all 12-year-olds when compared to the Anglo-Saxon and the Germans who he thought were as mature as 45-years-old.

"More importantly, you shouldn't play it down as if it were a casual slip of the tongue; it was a sworn testimony he made before the U.S. Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations Committee."

She was just listening as if my correction hadn't made any difference to the topic. In the total absence of the willingness to redefine the issue at hand on her part, I had to play the role of the questioner, as well. Now Our conversation which wasn't really interactive went essentially like this thereafter.

I said, "At first let me ask you if you think our parents and grandparents really deserved his slander. If I am not mistaken, it sounded as though you thought they did." Her answer: "You are not mistaken. I think MacArthur was right, more or less." I asked her: "Could you tell me the reason why you think they were that immature?" "I haven't given a thought to the question from that perspective before. But I somehow feel that way."

Now I had to cite my own reasons: "Just let's be reminded that our parents and grandparents pleaded for his special mercy on Hirohito's life instead of claiming it ourselves for having sacrificed his subjects, more than 3 million of them, just to save him and his family. He was generous enough to accept the insane wish. As a result, the SCAP was revered as the the blue-eyed "Second Emperor" during his reign which extended from 1945 to 1951. And on April 16, 1951, the day of his departure, he was once again taken aback on his way to the Haneda Airport at the sight of the streets closely lined with 200 thousands Japanese enthusiastically waving small Stars and Stripes."

I went on to ask her the next question. "Do you think he was really qualified to look down on them?" Once again she was caught off guard because she hadn't expected another question was coming in that respect. I explained: "If MacArthur's had a good reason for his contempt for the 12-year-olds, that does not necessarily mean he was 45-years-old. The pot sometimes calls the kettle black." The retired schoolteacher fidgeted for a while before she managed to mumble out something like this: "To be honest with you, I didn't know exactly what made him think he was qualified to be so contemptuous about the Japanese. I just thought his attitude was somehow understandable."

I answered my own question: "The general had to resort to the unsophisticated age metaphor at the congressional hearing because he was also 12-years-old, maybe 13 at best. If he had been a well-educated, mature man, MacArthur might have used the anthropological term 'neoteny' which would have unequivocally meant an incurable illness particular to the descendants of a rice-growing tribe. Decades later Robert D. Putnam would write of this terminally-ill country, "In some cases where you can get to depends on where you're coming from, and some destinations you simply cannot get to from here."

I went on. "Now that you have acquired some background information, do you think we contemporary Japanese still deserve that characterization? In other words, have we changed in the last 64 years?

The lecturer-turned-student had already started blushing. Or her face may have just flushed because of the uninterrupted gulps of wine. Now that I belatedly realized I'd fallen into the same, old trap despite the utmost precaution I'd taken, I answered my own question on her behalf once again.

"Traditionally we have been so used to being taught by teachers like you that we haven't used our own brains over how to overcome our developmental failure. As a result most of us 'think' we have to learn our lessons from past mistakes as if history were redoable or even undo-able. If there is still something to learn from history, it's the very fact that there's absolutely nothing to learn there."

I stopped there because I knew it would be counterproductive to further grill her and I had no intention to make her lose face before the Indian merchants.

At that point, one of the Indians opened his mouth for the first time as if to placate the argumentative old goat so both sides would find common ground to soft-land. He said, "We wonder why you still keep your brain this sharp at the age of 79. What is the secret of your extraordinary lucidity?" I said, "At least in part I owe this to your home country. As you know, turmeric-rich food such as my favorite noodle in curry soup is available around here at a very reasonable price."

But the retired schoolteacher felt she had to add some spice to the compliment by her vendor. She said as if to hand down the final verdict:

"Mr. Yamamoto, this is a downright tragedy."

"Tragedy" (悲劇) is not an everyday word in Japan. Totally unprepared, I was about to say, "You bet it is!" But before actually uttering these words, I asked her for a clarification: "What exactly is tragic about this? And for whom?" Equally unprepared on her part, she gave me an offhand explanation. "Of course, it's you I'm talking about, Mr. Yamamoto. It seems to me you are completely against the natural providence that says as one grows old biologically, his cognitive faculty should also deteriorate accordingly." Her argument sounded all-too-familiar but once again it seemed she was just parroting the general who said in his farewell speech: "Old soldiers never die; they just fade away."

Or maybe she implicitly quoted Pierre de Coubertin who famously echoed the words of Roman poet and satirist Juvenal: "Mens sana in corpore sano." Now she turned out to be yet another Japanese macaque who can't wait until 2020 to see the 2-millennium-old crap reconfirmed as an indisputable axiom.

More than three years ago I posted a piece that dealt with Japan's medical cartel. There I raised dozens of questions those who blindly believe in the myth the World Health Organization has been disseminating about the world's most effective medical system of Japan dare not ask. They included:
● What should the "healthy" longevity Japan boasts mean when one in four Japanese is seriously considering suicide according to the government statistics?
● How can Japan's overall medical achievements be considered outstanding when every third Japanese is supposedly suffering hypertension according to the likes of The Japanese Society of Hypertension?
● Are Japanese doctors considered really productive when "a 3-hour wait for a 3-minute treatment" is the norm for their outpatients?
● Does it make any sense to evaluate the Japanese medical system when 70-90% of outpatients are just pretending to be physically sick, but in fact, mentally ill?

Although not a single individual who read my post gave me a feedback as useful as the retired schoolteacher's, it is evident from the obsessive-compulsive behavior of these supposedly decent and polite people that Japan has established itself as a model country only at the cost of incurable mental illnesses. In a restaurant or a coffee shop, these creepy creatures can't refrain from talking nonstop for hours about their own or their children's blood, pus and excrement, as if their only concern is mere subsistence.


There's more to it. Just take a look at these pictures I took during my recent train ride. As you can see here, these Sumaho-addicted, thinking-disabled zombies become auto-intoxicated, at a certain point of the uninterrupted connection among themselves, from the overdose of what I call "the shared emptiness." And the moment they get disconnected, they instantly fall asleep.

The continuous "hollowing out" of Japan's economy since the mid-1980s has taken a devastating toll on people's minds, and they are now empty inside, figuratively and literally.

It should be noted here that Sumaho is NOT the Japanese contraction for a smartphone. It has nothing to do with a mobile phone with added functionality.
In this nation of conformists, one-on-one communication is not really needed; the occasional exchange of a text message shorter than the 17-syllable haiku poem, sometimes with a selfie or two attached to it is more than enough.

In fact, a Sumaho is nothing but a portable digital shrine.

I started shooting using my cheap digital camera only after most commuters had got off at the Yokohama central station, everyone holding his handset. But at that time they already gave a menacing glance at the old cameraman, perhaps not because I had a digital camera in my hand but because I didn't have a Sumaho. Obviously I am always a public nuisance or a potential troublemaker.

I couldn't care less, though. It's not my fault at all. If something horribly tragic is taking place here, it's their tragedy, not mine.

According to the official statistics, 968 million copies of comic books and magazines were sold in 2011 to the 127 million people including company executives and political leaders. This accounted for 36% of year's publication of all genres. No wonder the population of lingerie thefts and voyeurs still keeps growing among social elites such as former CEO of IBM Japan Takuma Otoshi, incumbent Minister in charge of reconstruction of the areas afflicted by 3.11 disaster Tsuyoshi Takagi, and many others.

Now that comic books have been increasingly replaced with Sumaho, we are getting even more used to it with the population density in this traditionally close-knit society 10.3 times higher than in the U.S.

To say the least, the situation here is more than just suffocating.

And yet I don't think my conversation with the former schoolteacher was a total waste of time. With her unique and original way to recapitulate my 80-year-long life for me only 1.5 hours after we met, she at least reminded me of the importance of wisdom. We sometimes optimize the hard disc with the file defragmentation program to improve the performance. Likewise we have constantly to eliminate unessential knowledge to improve our wisdom.

The real problem here is what criteria to use to weed out unnecessary pieces of knowledge. Actually my criteria are such that make my life challenging. How to avoid risks or how to economize on the use of limited amount of resources is never at issue because if I prioritized the easiest and safest course of action, I would end up in a fairyland where everything is predictably comfortable and everyone is fully assimilated into the existing system.

In fact her words were heavily weighing on my mind for months, but I should have known I couldn't expect anything more than a misplaced verdict from a fully assimilated, androgynous woman like her.

In retrospect, I was an incessant womanizer throughout my adulthood who was driven solely by my unconditional adoration for genuine femininity. To me it was, and still remains, the only source of creative life. Without always having a woman within my reach, I wouldn't have lasted this long, let alone grown into a mature man. Admittedly I've sometimes had an intimate relationship with a wrong woman, including my second ex, and suffered its consequence for years. But now I think that it was unavoidable because I didn't intend to live an error-free life from the beginning.

Not that I loved faceless and fleshless women like most of you sexists and anti-sexists always do. I was extremely choosy about the women I became romantically involved with. In that context I think I was closer to a sex addict than to the believers or disbelievers in the mere idea of "the feminine mystique."

In this regard, I often compare myself with Josef K, the protagonist of Franz Kafka's The Trial because he constantly makes sexual advances "like a thirsty animal" with practically every woman he comes across in his apartment house, the courtroom, and lawyer's office.

But despite our striking resemblance on the surface, there is a fundamental difference between us. French writer Gustave Flaubert once observed: "God is in the details." And Kafka's way of describing the intimate relationships Josef K has with women is too surreal to conjure up vivid images. This indicates that he wants to make love to women just to relate himself to the alienating world through faceless and fleshless women. Needless to say, such an attempt is always doomed to failure. Simply put, Kafka as personified by Josef K was a eunuch.

Recently some critic tried to shed light on Kafka's sexual potency by analyzing Gregor Samsa, the central character of Kafka's The Metamorphosis, from the wornout Freudian perspective. He theorized that the scene in which Gregor's father kills his son who has been transformed into a giant vermin by throwing an apple at it unmistakably symbolizes that his tyrannical father has virtually castrated his son.

I read the two novels several times each when I was in my late teens and early 20s. Each time I found them quite intriguing but they always left me wondering why the author of mere cas cliniques (clinical cases) was touted as one of the greatest literary figures of the 20th century who almost prophesied the Holocaust.

My father was also an impossible tyrant. He was fighting against conformism, conventionalism and mediocrity surrounding him with his double-edged sword as any other first-rate scientist would do against the totalitarian regime. But thank god, the talented aircraft designer never used the sword directly against his own son. Instead he was going to use me as an additional weapon by training me to grow into a double-edged sword myself.

When I inventory a dozen or so mates to whom I committed myself wholeheartedly, I am always struck by the fact that my first ex-wife outshone other beautiful women with her irresistible charm and unforgettable grace.

On top of that, she had an extraordinary ability of conceptual understanding. To me it was a bonus because almost by definition, femininity tries to understand rather than conquer. Feminine attributes such as intuitive sensitivity and deep empathy can more than make up for the lack of the reasoning faculty.

Since my second ex demanded I destroy everything reminiscent of my first marriage, I don't know if my memories of the moments we shared in the period from 1957 through 1963 hasn't been sublimated at all in the last century. Yet I'm reasonably sure she was the ideal partner to spend the rest of my life with.

I think this was attributable at least in part to her upbringing.

Her maternal grandfather was one of the Imperial Army officers who were imprisoned for their failed attempt of the coup d'etat of February 26, 1936, which actually paved the way for Japan's stepped-up aggression in China by an odd twist of fate. But his daughter was a prominent figure in the world of the modern tanka (traditional 31-syllable poetry.) My first ex was born between the gifted poet and a reputable physician.

On the other hand, as you can infer from the above picture, which was most probably taken by her, around the time I was 19, Back then I was an impossibly egocentric and immature person as so many old men surrounding me today.

In those days I wasn't a particularly handsome and sexy guy. But my friends were saying I was a "girls' cup of tea" on and outside the campus. Perhaps these girls found my sulky attitude and anti-social behavior somehow attractive. For one thing I skipped almost all classes in my junior and senior years to engage in some political and journalistic activities in the wake of the nationwide protests against the renewal of the U.S.-Japan security treaty.

Maybe she was one of those girls who were precipitously attracted to the punk that I was. On February 14, 1957, she gave me unforgettable 2-item gifts, one of which was a 45-RPM record featuring Chet Baker and Gerry Mulligan playing My Funny Valentine. The other one was Sartre's play titled Nekrassov. I was really impressed because those were the days the Western customs such as Barentine's Day had yet to be introduced here (only for an utter bastardization.)

On the campus, and outside, we always stuck together. Some idiots on the campus used to say: "You two seem to be emulating the relationship between Sarutoru (Sartre) and Bobowaru (Beauvoir.)" We never failed to say: "It's none of your business. We don't emulate anyone in the first place."

We were formally wedded in 1960. But our marriage didn't last more than 4 years I left her for another woman as if to rid myself of the pressure of living with an ideal mate. Even worse, in the last days of our life mostly living together, I deliberately made fun of her by flirting with the new girlfriend in her presence.

It is true it was a little suffocating to stay with an exceptionally intelligent, elegant, sensitive, and sensual lady like her when I was still at a loss over which way to go. But to be more precise, it was too hard for me to find a way to reciprocate her willingness and readiness to help me out of the crisis facing me at the workplace and everywhere else.

When trying to sum up my life more than half-a-century after our breakup, I must admit something still remains unsettled deep inside, and that's what hinders my Operation Wrap-up.

What I did to her was really irredeemable because as I wrote earlier in this post, most of the time what's done isn't redoable or undo-able. She may think or want to think she has already overcome the aftereffect of the tragic accident I caused her. But ironically enough, I know she can't recover what she has lost in our failed marriage. For instance, she could have been a first-rate writer leveraging her unparalleled potential.

At one time, I thought I could turn to her to wrap me up because between us we had much more than just a good chemistry or the same wavelength but a deep resonance that could have led us to the same goal of life, though it was a little premature at that time. But I said to myself that it's not the right thing to do to renew contact with my 80-year-old girl this late in life.

Dr. Shiono I mentioned earlier in the post is an ardent music lover. Every once in a while he has prescribed me, for free, his favorite musical pieces such as Hilary Hahn's Bach in one way or the other along with Amlodipine and Valsartan at discounted prices. But late last month, he had his assistant hand me two recordable CDs. The pieces nicely burned onto them included a timely prescription of Carlos Kleiber's excerpts from Tristan and Isolde.

Operas are not particularly my favorite genre. But Richard Wagner's "musical dramas" are a different story because his "endless melodies" totally replaced overly dramatized arias and other showstoppers which are awkwardly bridged from one to the next with boring recitatives. Wagner's melodies just keep flowing throughout a scene.

The famous last scene of Tristan and Isolde is generally called "Liebestod" (death of love, or love of death) but it's believed that Wagner himself wanted to call it Verklärung or transfiguration. Either way Liebestod to me is the same thing as Lebenstod (death of life or life of death.)

Critics say the German composer wrote this musical drama under the influence of Arthur Schopenhauer who was in turn influenced by Buddha's Four Noble Truths. But as an avowed Buddha fundamentalist, I think this is ridiculous. It's my understanding that death can't consummate life or anything else in one way or the other because as I've said many times before, death is at the very core of life.

Another second-rate philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche is often quoted as saying: "Tristan and Isolde is the real opus metaphysicum of all art -- insatiable and sweet craving for the secrets of night and death." I don't know if that is what Wagner's Liebestod is all about.

This is not to say I wasn't overwhelmed by the overpowering scene in which the dying Isolde sings as if in an ecstasy over her lover's death.

As to the "Tristan chord" (F, B, D♯, and G♯) I think Musical Director of the Royal Opera House Sir Antonio Pappano explains it very precisely in the video embedded below. As he says, the strikingly modern chromatic chord resolves into a diatonic chord which someone calls "the most beautifully orchestrated B Major in the history of classical music." To me the Tristan chord was one of the most important combinations of notes because up until recently, I was giving nontechnical advice, off and on, to young Jazz musicians here.

My Operation Wrap-up still goes on with the inherent dilemma unresolved. But for now I really appreciate Dr. Shiono's Tristan prescription because it at least gave me a clue to resolving the dilemma on time. Now I know my life is neither a tragedy nor a farce. · read more (2 words)
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The Birth of Another Fake Hero

OUR GOAL IS TO MAKE YOU STOP TO THINK, AS WE ALWAYS PRACTICE HERE, RATHER THAN STOP THINKING. BEWARE NO ONE CAN DO THE THINKING ON YOUR BEHALF.

POSTSCRIPT February 6: 石堂順子、湯川正一、および某保険会社への朗報

Weep no more, the "bereaved" parents of nanchatte heroes and the fraudulent insurer who underwrote the risk of being kidnapped at a ridiculous per-diem rate of JPY 100K.


Junko Ishido, Goto's mother, shed a lot of obligatory tears at the FCCJ but the hag was wearing weird grins all the time as if she already knew ISIS could sometimes stand for Israel Secret Intelligence Service - and perhaps a few things more
Unconfirmed reports from nanchatte informed sources, including an American regular of this website, have it that these scenes of beheading were all fake and most probably your sons are currently vacationing in Miami, FL.

Through my longtime experience with every school of conspiracy "theorists," I've learned they are conspirators or their henchmen themselves. To please their largely imaginary Jewish employers, they single-mindedly use a cheap trick of deliberately discrediting themselves by disseminating childish anti-Semitic paranoia.

One typical example is their far-fetched allegation about "Laurel Canyon Conspiracy" of the 1960s. They say hippies like Frank Zappa were employed by the predominantly Jewish establishment to taint the antiwar cause in a roundabout way. But actually it's pre-9/11 conspiracy theorists who subtly emboldened the Pentagon to escalate the Vietnam War. Most of the time these old kids afflicted with premature senility didn't know what they were doing, but as a matter of fact, things unfolded as if in a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Motives? Yes, basically there are two personal factors that drive a truth-seeker into obsessive-compulsive behaviors. I'll elaborate on this aspect of the issue in the following post.

Now I wouldn't be surprised if they are just pulling your leg to the same end. But who knows? Either way I couldn't care less what's become of these Japanese macaques.


In this war the Palestinians’ only weapon is terrorism. It is a terrible weapon but the oppressed poor have no others.

              Jean-Paul Sartre on the 1972 killing of 11 Israeli Olympians in Munich



When the first installment of the serial videos was uploaded by the Islamic State on January 20, the Japanese instantly resorted to their traditional behavior of letting things drift in total inaction resulted from thanatosis-like paralysis.

In the meantime their brain-dead leader was automatically repeating, as if in delirium, the same nonsense over and over: "We will never negotiate with the terrorists." He never failed to add in the same breath that his top priority, nonetheless, is to talk the terrorists into releasing the hostage immediately.

And fortunately for them, the problem solved itself this morning as it always does for the haunted nation as far as this dubious guy named Kenji Goto Jogo (See NOTE) is concerned.

NOTE: Goto's official family name is Jogo. It's interesting to know his wife Rinko Jogo was once stationed in Amman, Jordan, as a staff member of the Japan International Cooperation Agency. JICA is a quasi-governmental entity which has been known as a venal organization to covertly siphon taxpayers' money back to the Japanese government and its contractors under the guise of coordinating the appropriation of the Official Development Assistance.

Like Abe, I'm not very sure if I can pull myself together again to face the terrorism of words from my thinking-disabled audience before the Grim Reaper decapitates this 79-year-old blogger who is now under the imminent threat of fatal brain infarction. But if I can prepare myself in time, I will upload a new post to explain exactly why I have no difficulty looking the other way when some more unprincipled rogues from the U.S. and principle-less dregs of humanity from Japan are beheaded, all in Guantanamo jumpsuit.

Of course, the title of the new piece will be something like:

"Can actual false-flag tactics on presumed ones save the Planet of the Apes from totally falling apart?"

Time and again in the past I've said to these super-credulous guys under the influence of the conspiracy cult:

"If everything is a hoax, your conspiracy theory must also be a hoax. So there's no point in discussing issues with you. On the contrary if there still are issues which aren't fake, tell us specifically what they are. And let's discuss them seriously without resorting to American cynicism or Vietcong's guerrilla tactic."

Every time I warned them, they pretended that they hadn't heard me because they were fully determined not to face the reality. Now I have no reason, whatsoever, to refrain from revealing the dirty secret about these small-time imperialists disguised as something else.

Mark 16:16 goes: "He that believeth .... shall be saved." Amen.



POSTSCRIPT: Obviously it's a matter of time before these truth-seeking parasites, who are mentally retarded, and perhaps physically impaired too, start to spread the same old ignoratio elenchi such as Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is actually a Jewish operative. In this video embedded below, a eunuch from the Planet of the Apes is saying all these gruesome scenes were staged by the Mossad and the CIA from behind the curtain. · read more (1 words)
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Class War in the Cultist-Dominated World

BY DEFINITION, TO BELIEVE IS TO CLOSE THE DOOR TO CREATIVE DIALOGUE WHEREAS TO THINK IS TO INTERACT DIALECTICALLY WITHOUT RESORTING TO GUERRILLA TACTICS BOTH VIETNAM VETERANS AND DRAFT-DODGERS ARE SO GOOD AT.


The ersatz priest officiating a wedding ceremony for a Japanese couple at a makeshift Chaperu

Most Japanese of Masako's generation never worship, but happily embrace a trilogy of faiths. They see no contradiction in being taken to the local Shinto shrine to be recorded at birth, marrying in Christian ceremonies (thousands of them in Australian churches as part of a honeymoon package,) and having their bones buried in Buddhist family tombs.

                     From Princess Masako by Ben Hills

I'm missing Mr. Atsuta who owned a small Japanese-style bar sitting just across the narrow street from the rundown apartment building where I live. Atsuta sometimes came in early to serve Japanese lunch to neighbors who were fed up with greasy Chinese food. On such occasions, I often visited his shop to have sashimi lunch at an affordable price. But a couple of months ago, he suddenly closed down his shop presumably because what he had openly predicted became reality. Atsuta was always saying his family of three was on the verge of breakup.

Atsuta was a great conversationist, and more importantly he was like a walking Wikipedia. Aside from low-fat food served there, I always enjoyed discussion with the pleasantly talkative owner-chef over a variety of topics ranging from politics to history to culture to climate to food. It was amazing because he didn't attend any higher-leaning course. True, his knowledge was rather on the shallow side, but I know very few university graduates here whose insight into things is any better than his.

One afternoon, a year or so ago, we were discussing taxes and what we get in return for paying them. I was also so talkative as to mention how "DK" had saved my life when I was getting killed by the tax-collecting robbers at the Yokohama City Hall.

Aghast at my story about my savior, Atsuta paused in the middle of the preparation of my lunch, and said: "So this gentleman is not your son, or sibling. Moreover, he had no reason, whatsoever, to feel obliged to give you that much of money. He did that just because he empathized with your way of life. I haven't heard of such a selfless person in my life."

Subsequently our conversation went on like this:

Atsuta: "I think you must have a special kind of charisma. Without a doubt you'll make a well-deserved fortune in a matter of a year or two if you found a cult of your own."
Me: "Maybe you are right. I would name it something like the Group of Creative Thinkers."
Atsuta: "It's not sexy enough for the name of a cult. I wouldn't join such a cult myself. But the naming issue aside, what would the creed be like?"
Me: "Thanks for asking. My tenet No. 1 would be something like, 'Never believe in anything or anyone.'"
Atsuta: "Egad! What else would you tell your disciples to believe, (he added in a sarcastic tone) or not to believe, to be more precise?"
Me: "My tenet No. 2 would be, 'Never believe in anything or anyone.'"
Atsuta: "Is there tenet No. 3?"
Me: "You bet there is. It's 'Never believe in anything or anyone.'"
Atsuta: "Don't let me down. Now I've changed my mind. That way you could never be a guru. Forget about my suggestion that you should get into the cult business."

Early this past summer, my long-ailing Vista machine finally went dead. For a solid month I had to go through quite an ordeal to get a decent replacement at no cost. It's once again this charitable person who finally came to my rescue. He found me a used laptop machine with Windows 7 installed in it and spent a whole weekend to recondition it, all for free. He also bought me a speaker to be attached to the machine when he knew I wasn't happy with the poor sounds from the built-in speaker.

What if I had come back to Atsuta to tell him how the selfless guy helped me out of the computer crisis? I think he would have repeated the same thing: "Just the same, you don't have an aptitude for the cult business."

It was the same bar owner who taught me the official numbers of clergymen and adherents in Japan's religious groups are a gross understatement because only legitimized cults such as Soka Gakkai ("Value-Creating" Institute) are included in the statistics.

YearShinto%Buddhism%Christianity%Other%Total%
1985115,70451.692,33441.11,7100.814,6976.5224,444100.0
2000108,03550.095,72544.31,8010.810,4864.9216,047100.0
2011100,84851.185,04143.01,9501.09,7054.9197,545100.0
NOTE: Numbers of clergymen and adherents combined by religion are shown in 1,000 in this table.

Atsuta pointed out that the total number of people who are associated, in one way or the other, with religious groups including those without tax-exempt status will be greater than 300 million, i.e. almost 2.5-times larger than country's total population of 127.3 million.

Atsuta uncharacteristically failed to touch on the most important thing: what some of us call the Tennoist Cult just on a between-the-two-of-us basis. People are taught that the postwar Japan is a secular country. But the fact of the matter remains that the Tennoist Cult is not only given a tax-exempt status but affluently funded with taxpayers' money. Even Atsuta's estimate of 300 million is a gross understatement.

Australian journalist Ben Hills had a good point when he wrote the contemporary Japanese "happily embrace a trilogy of faiths." But actually he gave a wrong picture of this country. The readers of his book must have taken it that every Japanese individual goes back and forth, arbitrarily or opportunistically, among three religions during his lifetime. But actually, as I argued six years ago in my aborted book, it's something you would get when you randomly tossed incongruous religious ingredients into one salad bowl that governs Japanese people throughout their lifetime. Everything is fake in this cultural wasteland.

As you can see in the statistics shown above, there are only 1.95 million people who believe, rather than think, they are Christians. This translates into a mere 1.5% of the total population. And how many people are wedded in the Christian format? According to the data recently released by a major research company, an astounding 70% of people are wedded in Christian ceremonies although most of them still decide the dates of their weddings according to the Japanese version of the Buddhist calendar. For instance, Butsumetsu, the day of the 6-day Buddhist week on which Buddha is believed to have died, is almost always avoided even if it falls on a Gregorian weekend.

Actually I've known three American individuals who live or lived an easy life in the city of Yokohama, teaching locals "English" which sounds more like Japlish to me. Aside from their high-paying teaching job, they often have the offer for a side-job from the makeshift chapel attached to a five-star hotel. One of these guys once confided to me that he'd sometimes accepted such an offer to earn 15K yen just by pretending to be a priest for an hour. He didn't have to know how to proceed with the ceremony because he was given beforehand a bilingual manual which explained what he was supposed to say and do, and in which language, in every detail. His authenticity hinged solely on his blue eyes.

Does this still have anything to do with faiths? Practically every Japanese I've talked to in the past has said, "What's wrong with cherry-picking things we like?" Of course, nothing is wrong with apes aping other apes like this. It's their life, not mine. I'm just saying this isn't a laughing matter from humanity point of view. Obviously, it's the key to understanding this nation-state named Japan exactly how to define a cult.

Here let me ask you a simple question to find out if you are a cultist, which is more likely than not.

How do you define a cult as against a religion?

I'm afraid you don't know the answer because to you a cult is yet another religion you don't like for whatever is the reason. If you like it, of course it's a religion.

Someone is saying in his website: "Cult is a system of religious beliefs that is followed by a small number of people whereas religion is an organized system of beliefs and practices followed by the majority of a population." This thinking-disabled American shows an unmistakable sign that he is a cultist himself.

My way of defining a cult goes like this:

"A cult is a jumble of incongruous ideas, religious or not, put into a salad bowl."

No matter whether you are a theist or an atheist, when your thought failed to evolve into something more creative and coherent, it's destined to quickly fossilize into a mere belief.

In my most recent post, I theorized, or at least hypothesized, that this cult-ridden country disguised as a modern nation-state is "nothing but an illusion shared among 127.3 million people."

A vast majority of people found my argument not only ridiculous but even outrageous. It's true some small number of people said they agreed with me. But I suspect they didn't take my deliberate statement at its face value; to them it was just a salty analogy.

I knew I had to refrain from going too far with Newtonian analogies. But since I thought, rather than believed, my ontological inference about the mirage-like country is analogous closely enough to a physical or optical observation, I substituted a generally accepted physical law for my argument in order to make it more understandable to those who are not good at thinking.

I could have founded a cult of my own on my ontological theory and repeated one and the same idea over and over, as if it's a conclusion rather than a starting point. But in fact, I chose to go on THINKING. Indeed, Japan is a cult-ridden nation. So is the United States. But SO WHAT?

To be more specific, there are four questions currently facing me:
1) Is a certain kind of class struggle still going on?
2) If that is the case, who is fighting against whom?
3) What weapons are available to them?
4) Is it a winnable war for us?

When addressing the first question, we've got to know if the ubiquity of cults is an issue particular to this nation of Shamanism. If there is a substantial difference between Japan and the United States, it lies in the fact that while Shotoku Prince was neither a guru nor a cultist, America's founding fathers were all cultists who based their dogma on John Locke's philosophical rubbish from the beginning.

But in recent years, especially since the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the American people have been increasingly into what I call Diversity Cult which is a natural consequence of Locke's delusion about "natural rights to life, liberty and property." Ironically, there is a striking resemblance between America's national cult and the Japanese obsession with Shotoku Prince's idea that "harmony should be put before anything else" as Article 1 of his 17-Article Constitution of the 7th century famously put it.

In 1967 a stupid anthropology professor named Chie Nakane argued in her bestselling book "Personal Relations in a Vertical Society" that Japan is a vertically-structured, hierarchical society. But she was 90-degrees wrong literally and 180-degrees wrong figuratively. The fact of the matter remains that this country has long been a horizontally-aligned, classless society. Everybody is equal under the reign of the phantom named the Emperor.

Now that the entire world is getting aligned more and more horizontally, it's an illusion if you see a conventional struggle such as one between labor and capital. And yet, with your outmoded way of viewing the division of society, you tend to overlook the fact that a class war is still going on.

These days the big battalions of thinking-disabled guys have been spreading their delusive propaganda, mainly on the web, that the Have Nots that account for 99% of the population are challenging the rule by the Haves. On the other hand another millions of thinking-disabled bastards, who call themselves truth-seekers, have been disseminating, also mainly on the web, their delusive dogma that the "dumbed-down sheeple" should wake up to the reality about handful of Jews constantly hatching an evil plot to dominate over the world. It's as though they haven't noticed the Internet is the worst conspiracy in history.

They are mistaken, if they aren't just lying, in part because they are so dumbed down themselves as to take it for granted that still there are stereotypical classes in this horizontally-aligned world. Ironically enough, they invariably base their childish conspiracy "theories" on Locke's 3-plus-century-old delusion. Jews are now targeting these "inalienable" rights of people, so they believe, if not think.

More importantly, they haven't realized that as a matter of the law of physics, the docility of the people can't support a gaseous thing like their nation-state. On the contrary, the more powerful the protest from the "awakened" people, the more likely it is that the gaseous substance will be captured in a reinforced structure and become a solid and sustainable edifice.

Let's face it: it's none other than these self-styled dissidents who are effectively underpinning this otherwise fragile regime. They are irreplaceable contributors to the ultimate conspiracy of making the nonexistent thing visible and touchable.

Dissidents and mainstreamers are the two wings of the same dead bird because both of them got stuck with the worst type of paranoiac delusion that makes them see a class struggle where there is none. In the 21st century, the real war is being fought between thinkers and believers.

And in all fairness to unassimilated women, I'm inclined to include them in the class of thinkers although they are not always good at conceptual thinking. They remain unassimilated simply because of their instinctive desire to be with creative thinkers.

And what weapons are available to both sides? Although it's not a question of papyrus or electronics, the Internet seems to be the single most powerful weapon around. As a matter of fact, however, now it is monopolized by believers. They are effectively using what I termed digitized utility altar. Sometimes they insist they are using the search engine as a thinking-aid as if there is such a thing that helps you think. Everything they say is an utter delusion.

Actually the Internet is a double-edged sword. If we thinkers use our ultimate weapon, i.e. the ability to think creatively, we should be able to turn the believers' only weapon against them.

There is no reason, whatsoever, to think we can't use the web-based technologies in an inventive way as even the thinking-disabled punk named Mark Zuckerberg could do to attain his malicious goal in a matter of several years.

This website has been constantly unoptimized by these SEO companies who are affiliated, in one way or the other, with big names such as Google. Basically the business model of an SEO company is as simple as to optimize the traffic for those who want to "monetize" their website at the cost of those who don't. Sometimes I even suspect thinking-disabled elements among my audience are in effect unoptimizing my traffic.

Under the circumstances, I can't afford, financially, physically. or otherwise, to take steps to broaden my "audience base" any further. So I am not sure if I can do any more than I've done in the last ten years to make the war against the believing class winnable.

But I still think we have a fair chance of defeating believers thanks to their self-fulfilling prophecy of it. As I stressed in my June post, the fittest are the first to go extinct in a degenerating society. At least I see an early indication of that beyond the "cloud" of the World Wide Web. · read more (81 words)
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PLANET OF THE APES haunted by the phantom of John Locke

OUR GOAL IS TO MAKE YOU STOP TO THINK, AS WE ALWAYS PRACTICE HERE, RATHER THAN STOP THINKING. BEWARE NO ONE CAN DO THE THINKING ON YOUR BEHALF.



    Reading furnishes the mind only with materials of knowledge;
    it is thinking that makes what we read ours.

                        John Locke (1632-1704)


The chattering classes in the West, from mainstream to fringe, still take it for granted that history repeats itself, while, in fact, it's not history that haunts human beings for centuries; it's their own stupidity. As I have introduced in this website, the idea central to the epistemology of Soren Kierkegaard is "repetition" but the Danish philosopher defined it as forward recollection which requires your willingness to learn.

According to these learning-disabled people, now we are witnessing Cold War II or even signs that World War III is imminent.

With my days being numbered, for my part, I can't afford to waste a single minute talking about politics. It's something other than politics that made me search for Vladimir Putin's take on what's going on in Crimea, the remainder of Ukraine and ISIS.

In one of the videos someone asked Putin how he viewed the situation. In response, the Russian President said something like this: "Nyet. In those days, Russia and America differed ideologically, but today we differ philosophically."

Putin's keen observation prompted me to take a hard think at the November 9 vote in Catalonia from a philosophical angle. That led me to write in my most recent post that Catalans' quest can only be understood as a philosophical departure from the modern nation-statehood which is essentially based on the Enlightenment theories.

To my dismay my serious argument backfired in a way that reminded me of the Rules for Posting I've asked my supposedly well-educated audience to observe since the inception of this blog.

Before launching the taboo-free website 10 year ago, I'd intensively read many books dealing with fraudulent journalism. In one of them, author Bob Kohn quoted a journalist as saying, "Progress cannot be made on serious issues because one side is making arguments and the other side is throwing eggs."

This is exactly what's going on here these days. I got hysterical rather than philosophical responses from my audience as if I'd touched on an indisputably sacred thing for the Americans. To them it's especially unacceptable if it's a serf in America's Far-Eastern fiefdom who questions the principle on which the Evil Empire has been built.

My blood pressure hit 200 mmHg for the first time since 2012. It still stays there. But I thought I had to pull myself together to fight back if I still want the Okinawans to do the same. This is why I quickly came back with some elaboration on my argument against Mr. Locke's crap.

I must admit I haven't read the original text of Two Treatises of Government, An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, or any other work of John Locke. When I still had time to possibly study his works, it was already too evident to me, from the unprincipled way the average American lived his life, that Locke didn't deserve to be called a philosopher as compared to these thinkers in the European Continent, China and India.

For one thing, although his words quoted at the top of this post may sound somewhat plausible to those who never bother to think, they don't make a bit of sense from the epistemology point of view.

Here Locke failed to clarify two things.

Firstly he couldn't tell what exactly the verb "think" should mean. To me it means, first and foremost, to take nothing for granted because as I've said many times before, there's no such thing as thinking that isn't creative. In other words, to think does not mean to choose the correct answer from among "Yes," "No," "I don't know," and "I don't care."

Equally important, Locke also failed to tell where man's ability of creative thinking comes from. As you were taught at school, he theorized that man's brain at birth is Tabula Rasa, i.e. a blank slate. He argued that through experience and reading afterward, one acquires knowledge. But the real question is exactly how he can acquire the ability to think that "makes what we read ours," if ever he has started from scratch.

We can see the same logical flaw, or gimmick to be more precise, in his idea about natural rights to "life, liberty and property." If our "state of nature" is like a blank slate, how can it be true that we were endowed with innate rights, nonetheless, or anything else for that matter?

He was wrong, too, about "social contract" which serves as the basis of legal rights according to his theory. Since there's no such thing in this world as a contract which isn't terminable, his social contract can't be a contract in the first place.

It is true Thomas Jefferson and other founding fathers found Locke's philosophical rubbish quite useful as a dogma with which to propagate their political cause. They didn't really care if this particular school of empiricism was, in fact, nothing but a jumble of incoherent ideas. There's nothing particularly wrong, however, with these political racketeers who deliberately ideologized the words of their guru.

The problem lies with the fact that their posterity has decided to enshrine the delusive ideology as the founding principle of their country long after the expiration of its validity. Today even these anti-Semitic idiots who "think" they are seeking truth invariably base their delusive conspiracy theories on a childish premise that it constitutes an unforgivable crime to deprive someone of his inalienable rights.

Perhaps Locke and his American disciples were at fault for the fabrication because they forgot to provide their posterity with a prescription for the art of creative thinking. It's no accident that the entire nation of America now looks like a cult whose members have no ability to think, either innate or acquired.

I may be wrong, however.

I don't want to repeat the same thing over and over. But please be reminded one last time of what I wrote in September.

"A heavily intoxicated man always insists he is as sober as a judge. And a psychopath, almost by definition, doesn't doubt his sanity for a split second. Likewise, one who suffers the mental illness that I call premature senility never admits he is just shuffling information purely on an ear-to-mouth basis."

I may fall on Category 2 or 3 myself. That's why I always value frank feedback from my audience. So please feel free to correct me if you find my interpretation of John Locke inaccurate, or totally wrong. · read more (15 words)
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I'M IMMORTAL - for better or for worse

WELCOME TO THE WORLD'S MOST UNPLEASANT WEBSITE.

OUR GOAL IS TO MAKE YOU STOP TO THINK, AS WE ALWAYS PRACTICE HERE, RATHER THAN STOP THINKING. BEWARE NO ONE CAN DO THE THINKING ON YOUR BEHALF.

[People would ask me,] "Haven't you ever felt that you had to be quick, quick, quick, that time was short? Do you think you're immortal?" I would answer ..... "That's it, I think I'm immortal." .... I had killed myself in advance because only the deceased enjoy immortality. I had taken precautions against accidental death, that was all.
       - From Les Mots (The Words) by Jean-Paul Sartre (English translation by Bernard Frechtman)

You always say there's no point in discussing the life-and-death issue. Some of you even think it's tasteless to touch on it, especially in public, because it's purely a personal matter like urination. But why then can't you just shut up, or stop thinking aloud, in the face of the demise of your friend or relative, or when your doctor diagnosed you with a life-threatening illness as if your thought or experience isn't worth sharing?

In my humble opinion, as long as you show vital signs, however weak they might be, you can't avoid talking about it because life can be looked at only in the light of death, just like death can be dealt with only from the perspective of life.


     The un-PC part of the IQ scale

Seven years ago I bought the permanent
leasehold for a secular burial site on a
hilltop in Gunma Prefecture

When I was young, I took many achievement tests and some aptitude tests. But I've never had my intelligence quotient measured in my lifetime. So I can't tell exactly, but it's quite evident from the results of the tests I've taken, my IQ was below 100. That means now I am a moron, at best, with my intelligence further deteriorating as I grew old.

For most of my lifetime I've had to study perhaps 10-times harder than you smart guys to overcome my intellectual impairment. To that end I've read 10-times as many books as you've read, including literature on specific areas of expertise such as business administration and the computer.

Not that I've loved reading. I was, and still remain, an extremely lazy person, Even worse, I've been afflicted with serious attention deficit disorder. This has made it impossible for me to become a real bookworm in my lifetime.

As a result, my way of reading books had to be very different from yours, and still remains so today,

I often skipped a paragraph or two every time I turned a page, or sometimes skipped a page or two every time I moved on to the next chapter. Whenever I did so, I filled in the gap with my own imagination, and claimed at the end that I read it.

I'm almost inclined to say this is the most creative way of reading books. Now as a blogger, I normally assume very few people read my post word for word. And perhaps this is why I boldify, italicize, and underline so many words.

In schools I seldom resorted to cheating simply because I was still a chickenhearted boy. But after starting to work, I grew bold. Cheating was sometimes inevitable for the survival of a dull-witted youth like me.

For a six-month period from October 1963, I was attending "IBM Sales School" as a trainee. There were five phases in our course and at the end of each phase we had to take a test on computer programming by COBOL, FORTRAN and Assembler. And we were told if we failed in a test, that's it, we would be fired right away,

I still remember sneaking, with some fellow trainees, into the training center located in downtown Tokyo to steal the question sheet for the test scheduled for the next morning, after killing time until midnight at a nearby coffee shop. In those days, security wasn't as tight as it is today even in a technology company. Not a single surveillance camera was in place. The only thing thieves like us had to do was to show the old night guard the ID cards, whether or not they were counterfeit. And the drawers of the instructor's desk remained unlocked.

In short I was the worst type of student who had great difficulty swallowing, let alone digesting, any idea taught second-hand by the teacher. As a matter of fact I failed in practically all entrance exams I took at the ages of 6, 12, 15, 18, 19 and 23.

The test I took when applying for a position at Japan's subsidiary of IBM at the age of 27 was the first one I passed on my own. I think it was just a fluke that I was one of the 2-dozen guys who passed the screening exam and the subsequent interview from among the capacity crowd of applicants packing the huge auditorium of Tokyo's Sophia University.

But when it came to learning through real-life experience, the intellectually-impaired man, that I was, looked like a caught fish returned to the water. After serving out a sentence of 16-years in classroom which was torturing to say the least. or boring at best, I was far better motivated because now I could set my own goal and decide how to pursue it all by myself. This way I got everything given to me and some things prohibited to me.

This is not to say, however, that I seldom made mistakes. On the contrary, I made a lot of them, though they were mostly "smart mistakes," because it's as hard as forecasting the course and velocity of a typhoon to predict what action or reaction to expect from an unprincipled pseudo-Christian, pseudo-Buddhist or fake atheist. The behavior of those who can't think using their own brains is always predictably unpredictable.

Seven years ago I purchased the "inalienable permanent leasehold" on a secular burial site for my deceased parents at the top of a hill in Gunma Prefecture. If I include the transportation cost for the urns containing ashes of my parents from a "Buddhist" temple in Tokyo, and other related expenses, it cost me more than a fortune.

From the beginning I'd had no intention to have my ashes buried there alongside my parents'. But I simply assumed my sons, together with their wives and children, would join their paternal grandparents according to the Japanese tradition. But now it seems they don't know, themselves, where to have their ashes buried. That would be OK with me unless their plan was to vegetate for an indefinite period of time. Actually there are signs that they assume they are immortal.

When I found out my investment in the hilltop grave turned out to be a total waste of time and money, I virtually disowned them. I wasn't a parent who was particularly demanding of his children. At any point in their formative years I didn't try to mold them in any way as my father had tried on me. I just wanted to prevent them from being molded by Soka Gakkai or any other cult because I knew they wouldn't grow into a mature men if their spontaneity, which is the only enabler of creative attitude toward life, was nipped in the bud.

My way of letting them know they were now disowned was to tell them they should never look for my corpse, and they should refuse to comply if and when the police bring it along and order them to incinerate it and bury the ashes in a designated place. It's not really likely these law-abiding guys will adhere to my wish, but I don't really care how they will act when I vanish. That won't make a bit of difference to the dead one.

For better or for worse, this is how I became what I am. For all these years of ups and downs with two divorces and disownment of two prematurely grown-up sons in between, I've learned and relearned from my real-life experience how to find the stream of the Styx on my map.

Despite all these mistakes, now I know creativity is everything that really counts either in business or personal life. It's your creative mind that keeps you on this side of the stream. The moment you lose it, you'll be on the other shore.

However, it's an unfounded belief that the Styx is always a river of no return. You sometimes come back from there, if only to cross it again for good at a later point in time. This is why some of you sometimes feel death is at the very core of life. Death and life, therefore, are inclusive of each other, and the former doesn't give a meaning to the latter, or vice versa.

In short, life isn't the prelude to the glory of death and death isn't the grand finale of life filled with much ado about nothing.

To be more specific about creative mind, nothing creates it; it creates itself when innate spontaneity and acquired discipline meet in a person. Actually it actualizes itself in two steps. At first it dissociates itself from the established link, and then gets re-associated to create a new link.

This should also mean that like tango, it takes two or more to be creative. A potentially creative idea becomes actually creative only when it's shared with someone else. I know an uncreative person will never understand this, even when his IQ is on the high side. He is so much in love with himself that he constantly mistakes an absurd illusion in his head for something of real value.

In the same book from which I've quoted a passage at the top of this post, my philosophy teacher also wrote since his father died when he was 2-years-old, he "had no Superego" and that made it relatively easy for him to commit a symbolic, or simulated, suicide to "become completely posthumous."

He added: if his father had lived longer, "he would have lain on me at full length and would have crushed me." But actually, thanks to his father's short-lived life, "I, the dead one, did not love myself."

Fortunately or unfortunately, I didn't have to kill myself in advance. My father lived much longer, and taught his poorly gifted offspring to learn things in the most painstaking and ineffective way. But the result was no different: I ceased to love myself when I was still a child. This saved me from becoming one of those self-important narcissists or self-deprecating eunuchs I see everywhere these days.

When I retired at the age of 70, I took another big decision of life: I decided to opt out of Japan's medical cartel, which is formed by doctors, medical schools, pharmaceutical companies, medical equipment manufacturers, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, the media and the 127-million gullible people. I opted out of it, totally and for good, because essentially it's an integral part of what the late Chalmers Johnson called Japan-particular "cartels of the mind."

Now I know death is always a solo business. I'm getting more or less prepared for an unaccompanied, undisturbed, solitary death.

In the last paragraphs of my favorite whodunit Playback written by Raymond Chandler, the private dick receives a long-distance call from Paris. In the middle of the conversation with the lady calling from France, the line suddenly goes dead. And soon afterward the lawyer who has hired him for a criminal case calls him.

"His voice rose to a sharp crackle. 'I demand a full report from you at once. Otherwise I'll see that you get bounced off your license.' 'I have a suggestion for you, Mr. Umney. Why don't you go kiss a duck?' There were sounds of strangled fury as I hung up on him. Almost immediately the telephone started to ring again. I hardly heard it. The air was full of music."

My final death will be just yet another moment I've experienced time and again in my 78-year life. Because I know very well there is absolutely nothing new in it, except it's final, I'm sure I won't find it worth sharing with anyone.

But until the day before the last, my telephone will keep ringing because these un-assimilated young Japanese ladies want me to re-experience the creative moments we shared amid this pandemic of premature senility and juvenile dementia.

Recently one of the regulars of my website warned me that I'd gone too far with this "hair-splitting" discussion, and I should get back to my "core competence of showing us how to avoid criminals in office and media."

I didn't suggest he go kiss a duck. But once again I was surprised to know Americans don't understand there's no such thing as a political issue, or a media issue. What's really at issue is always their own brains which can be seriously afflicted with the refractory mental illness.

It's none of my business. Yet I'm afraid your telephone will also be ringing every couple of weeks until I fall into my big sleep. There are some more things I want to share with you about this hair-splitting life-and-death topic - unless you explicitly unsubscribe from me in time, that is. · read more (54 words)
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An ontological point of view: LIFE, DEATH AND INTEGRITY


This is a re-post of my reply to an online comment from Mr. Diogenes, combined with a series of mails I exchanged with Mr. Samwidge over some semantic issues. The sentences in square brackets were added for clarity reasons when editing the material.



Jean-Paul Sartre
[To D from me, 11:35, Aug. 5 CDT]

Before getting started with the issue at hand, self-deception, let me clarify something. I’ve talked a lot about Sartre recently. But actually the French philosopher has never been my guru. By the same token, Being and Nothingness has never been my bible. I read the ontological essay for the first time some 58 years ago. I may have reread it a couple of times in subsequent years but I’ve never read it again in the last half century. It’s just that one day when I was in my late-30s or early-40s, I suddenly realized that my own thoughts I had “lived out” by then were very close to Sartrean way of thinking, and thus, his logic and terminology would best describe my life after graduating from his school.

Then, again I have to explain my view of professionalism. So many people underestimate the significance of professional expertise in life presumably because in their lifetime they haven’t engaged themselves in the value-creating process in the real world. People tend to mix up different things, only to cherry-pick one of them at a later point in time. [They know that is the only way to remain uncommitted to anything Sartre called "project."] This can be said of professionalism. They first mix it up with amateurism. And when they want to stress the beauty of amateurism, they cherry-pick it. Only when they think referring to professionalism serves their purposes, they start talking about it.

They treat professionalism like this primarily because if they admit they have to pursue professional skills or knowledge first and foremost, that means they have always to subject themselves to “the pain of study.” The lazy guys simply can’t tolerate this idea. But the fact of the matter remains that while you can SAY whatever you want to say without professionalism, you can’t DO anything you claim to be doing or others want you to do without it. All that we can expect from a nonprofessional or unprofessional person is an empty lip service. These are why I value professional expertise more than anything else.

After 9 years of my futile effort to get my message through to my predominantly American audience, I thought philosophy would be my last bastion. At that time, I realized anew that a retired businessman can't be anything more than a lay philosopher because he lacks the training on the particular discipline. So I decided to borrow these words from Sartre. I keep referring to his name and quoting his words. But actually Sartre is nothing more than my alias. Therefore, when I say in my writing, “Sartre thought this way,” it actually means I think this way. All along I remain ME. And that is the single most important lesson I've learned from Sartre. [I have never talked about someone else's problem in my blog.]

You brought up a variety of subjects, such as the Russian Revolution, the biblical feud between Cain and Abel, Jews’ dominance over Hollywood, etc. These subjects may have some distant relevance to our issue at hand, but after all, these are the same old “Truth-vs.-Fallacy” issues, which have absolutely nothing to do with our own habits of self-deception.

My question: "What is truth?" Your answer: "Truth is something that is not false." Another question: "What is fallacy, then?" Answer: “Fallacy is something that is not true.” [Or, you say: "This is believed to be true." My question: "So what?" You say: "That proved to be untrue." The same question: "So what?" But we already know it gets us nowhere to talk about oversimplified theses.]

For that reason, let me single out the “Life-vs.-Death" issue here.

Actually Sartre never juxtaposed life and death in the way Ernest Becker may have. Like the Buddha, he neither feared death nor denied it. Maybe it’s hard to understand for those who have blindly swallowed everything they were taught to believe, but Sartre had a good reason for his unique way to deal with the life-and-death issue. He saw death within life, and perhaps, life within death. I’m not very sure that he expressed his thought exactly this way. But he famously wrote: “Hell is other people.” This should be interpreted as an unequivocal statement that death is at the very core of life.

Sartre wouldn't have come up with this idea if he had taken it for granted that any death is yet another death, any life is yet another life, which actually means my death is the same thing as your death, and I live essentially the same life as the life you live. It's really frightening to know these days people are taught only to think of death in general and life in general. Their total inability to dialectically interchange with one another all stems from their proximity to the ape in that respect. [If each of them does not have his own idea to share with others, I think chimp's super high-context screech will serve their purposes.]

As we all should know, there are 60 trillion cells in our body. And 1 trillion of these 60 trillion die everyday. Which means what? In a matter of 60 days, you are a 100% different person than you were before - at least in theory. If you still remain the same person, you may have wasted the 2-months time presumably because of your fear or denial of death, i.e. mauvaise foi.

So many people talk so lightly about a man of integrity. But my definition of him goes like this: “A man of integrity is one who has the courage to face his real self in all his bad faith, in the mirror, or wherever it is, so he can effectively use what I call the double-edged sword inherently given in the human BEING.” [Sartre called those without integrity in that sense salauds (scums or swine) and never softened his ontological profanity until the end of his life.]


[S to/from me, 22:42, Aug. 5 to 08:37, Aug. 6 JST]


(From me)

Since English is not my mother tongue, I don’t know the exact meanings of many English words. Will you please tell me your own definition of the word “Integrity”? I ask you this question because you used it in your August 1 post.

American Heritage says the word means:

“Steadfast adherence to a strict moral or ethical code.”

This makes no sense because it leaves me wondering if a steadfast adherence to the terrorists’ cause can also be described as integrity.

The J-E dictionary says it means Seijitsu which can be reverse-translated into English as faithfulness. But as Sartre repeatedly pointed out, there is something to be called “Faith of Bad Faith.” So I wonder if integrity could also mean steadfast faithlessness.

I will appreciate it if you give me your definition when time permits.

(From S)

Good questions all.

Integrity means honesty at all levels. For instance; imagine that you are blind and about to cross the street. Someone tells you that there is no train coming. That would be honest. But if there is no train coming but a big freight truck is coming, then that person spoke without integrity.

There are many times in advertising and promotion that the remarks on a bottle are honest but misleading. In these cases, integrity has failed. A bottle of hand lotion might have a note saying, "contains no alcohol." Perhaps the presence or absence of alcohol means nothing. In this case the seller was trying to fool you and to keep your mind off other, more important decisions to make in your purchase.

Sartre has it right.

(From me)

I’ll leave it there but actually your answer would lead to another question: “What is honesty?” If this someone can’t tell the blind man the train is not coming because he is also blind, would you call him a dishonest man? [And what if he has no voice to warn the blind man a big freight truck is coming because he is a mute? What if he is too preoccupied with something else to notice there is a blind man? What if the blind man doesn't look like a blind man because his eyes are wide open?]

If I am to use your definition, there are millions of men of integrity. [Maybe it's billions.] Thanks anyhow.

(From S)

You have found a delightful polemic.

For me, a person can give an honest answer or not. Honesty is a yes or no kind of a thing. Nobody does something slightly honest or somewhat honest. There is no single thing that is sort of dishonest or a small bit dishonest.

Integrity is a far wider thing. Nobody has perfect integrity. None of us is really qualified to measure the integrity of another.

In finance, your own business, the world seems to like financial institutions of high integrity. Such firms even advertise that they have integrity. Frequently their integrity is insufficient.

Best of luck with this difficult question. · read more (40 words)
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Practical dialectic - PART 2: To save one is always better than to save none

CONTINUED FROM PART 1 OF MY LECTURE ON PRACTICAL DIALECTIC

Creativity refers to the potential to produce novel ideas that are task-appropriate and high in quality. Creativity in a societal context is best understood in terms of a dialectical relation to intelligence and wisdom. In particular, intelligence forms the thesis of such a dialectic. Intelligence largely is used to advance existing societal agendas. Creativity forms the antithesis of the dialectic, questioning and often opposing societal agendas, as well as proposing new ones. Wisdom forms the synthesis of the dialectic, balancing the old with the new. Wise people recognize the need to balance intelligence with creativity to achieve both stability and change within a societal context.
- From What is the Common Thread of Creativity - Its Dialectical Relation to Intelligence and Wisdom by Robert J. Sternberg, Yale University (April 2001, American Psychologist)


Where do we find ourselves now?

I may look to have shifted my focus from evolution to dialectic. But believe me, I'm still on evolution and will stay there until the day I finally write myself off. It's hard to explain why I feel that way, but I think it will make a big difference to my last glimpse of the world whether its residents are heading for an advanced stage of evolution or quickly reversing the process of evolution in the last 70 million years as if in the fast-motion trick. Now I'm not concerned about anything else. What good would it do to go find another foe when I'm already bogged down in the endless battle against small-time thieves in the municipal office?

Rest assured, however, nobody begs you to remain a human being if you don't feel like it. I just want to find it out.

Some of you will say, "Don't worry, we will never be tailed animals once again." Maybe you are right about tails. Yet there's no denying some of us look very close to the tailless monkeys, i.e. apes.

It's also useless to resort to our ability to recognize ourselves in the mirror as if it were a distinctive feature of mankind. Apes and many other animals have the same sense of self. Actually the only thing that separates humans from apes is dialectical sense of self.

In his Being and Nothingness, Jean-Paul Sartre gave man two attributes, lêtre-pour-soi (being-for-itself) and lêtre-pour-autrui (being-for-others.) The real implication of his ontology is that among many other "social animals," human beings are the only species that can interact dialectically with others, and their own selves at the same time.

In order to find out how people are actually communicating among one another, I have collected a variety of specimens on the web and in the streets in the last nine years since I started blogging. By now I have concluded from my observation that I'm not fretting over nothing. 99.9% of participants in online and offline discourse are just shuffling second-hand information purely on an ear-to-mouth basis even without noticing that's what they are doing.

You may say, "But, in fact, we are the only species which is able to do cross-border communication through the network of personal computers, for instance." If you are stupid enough to believe in the same old myth about information revolution, I recommend you read my essay titled The Death of the What?. Unless something vestigial is growing too fast in your brain, you will understand these technologies are all misused, or underused at best, simply because dialectical interactions between the developers and users of new technologies are missing there. Essentially that's what Karl Marx noticed at the height of the First Industrial Revolution one and a half centuries ago.

You will still insist: "What about our ability for trans-cultural communication? Can a chimp effectively communicate with an orangutan?" Let's face it: YES, they can do what we are doing between two peoples with different cultural backgrounds. As I told you here, the "machine translation" available on the web is nothing but a disaster. Now it looks as though Google Japan gives a dictionary to a chimp to have him translate an English text into Japanese, or vice versa. Just for example, the Google chimp totally destroyed my recent post titled Embroideries on a big canvas like this. In theory, even translation between a low-context language and a high-context one should not be an impossible task. But in reality, it is.

Almost for the last six decades, nation's "top-notch" computer scientists and linguists have made strenuous effort to develop translation software. And now Google Japan has decided the technology is mature enough to help English-illiterate Japanese understand English texts. But as any really bilingual person can tell, that is not the case - far from it.

In the last several years Toyota has been working on a series of its proprietary "Partner Robots." The second-last robot was the one who plays the violin. No one can tell what good it would do to ask him to play "music" for you. Most recently nation's flagship car manufacturer unveiled yet another friendly cyborg which is able to converse with people. Toyota proudly says now he is able to answer any question you may ask. It's a shame that robotics engineers in Japan still don't understand a robot can't be any smarter than his creators. The only thing the electronic parrot can do is to mirror these engineers in all their stupidity. It's just that the new robot can field any question because in this country, and the rest of the world to a lesser degree, questions an interviewer asks of the interviewee are 100% predictable and the answers to such silly questions are also planted beforehand. Example:

You: "What are some of your concerns about the situation here?"
PR: "Problem No. 1 is how to achieve the growth target without further widening the budget deficit. Problem No. 2 ...."
You: "Hold on, Mr. Cyborg. How would you fix your Problem No. 1?"
PR: "Hmm ... First of all we should think about further stepping up measures for QE. Then the Japanese currency will weaken against the greenback which will in turn reduce our trade deficit. As a result, the government can expect the tax revenue to grow significantly. Easier said than done, though. But I believe we should try hard to narrow the deficit this way. There's no panacea, you know."

How smart.

These guys are fully conditioned to selectively respond to stimulus words strictly in predetermined ways. And this is what they call COMMUNICATION. It's as though they are taking a multiple-choice exam everyday.

Basically the same thing is happening across the Pacific. Take a look at overly schematized way Robert J. Sternberg "analyzes" the mechanism in which man's intelligence develops. The unintelligent way of defining intelligence, uncreative way of defining creativity and unwise way of defining wisdom of a professor at the prestigious university are an unmistakable sign that America's intellectual decline is no longer reversible. In another paragraph of the same article, he shows the guts to mention Hegel. But it's obvious he hasn't read a single page of the German philosopher. I felt inclined to quote the intellectual rubbish, nonetheless, simply because the empty-headed professor is absolutely right when he says dialectic plays a pivotal role in intellectual development.

Apparently something unprecedented is happening in the "developed" countries presumably because of premature aging of human brains. I don't think it's the right thing to do to give a "quick-and-dirty" answer to the question of this magnitude. If I had time, I would certainly relearn from neuroscientists such as Arnold B. Scheibel about the aging patterns of the human brain, which were revealed only by their longitudinal studies. But in the interim I've tentatively concluded the following are how the overall intellectual degeneration was caused, and accelerated in the last quarter century.

While the context-dependency of a language is, more often than not, inversely related to what Betty Friedan interchangeably calls the ability of contextual thinking or "crystallized" intelligence, a downward spiral was touched off when the East Asians, perhaps excluding the Chinese, started using their high-context languages as if their context dependency were as low as that of Indo-European languages. The Japanese, for instance, invented a funny language often referred to as Japlish or Janglish. Then, the new language spoken in one of the most high-context cultures started to spread westward like an epidemic along with their industrial products. Now flooded with Japlish, English-speaking people are using their mother tongue as if it were a high-context language. A typical example is Twitter. It has a striking resemblance to Haiku, Japanese poems composed in the 17-syllable format. This makes me suspect Netizens are now using technologies of the 21st century to do what the Japanese people were doing 400 years ago. Presumably the gap is even wider. Today we hear everywhere on the web something very similar to chimp's super high-context screech.

I think it's against this backdrop that the collective intelligence of the human race is growing old, prematurely and in the wrong way - the way in which the cells in dendrites are hindered from branching like "dendritic fireworks" as a neuroscientist once described it. This underlies perpetual communication failure taking place everywhere in the twilight years of the American century. The Internet has just accelerated the process.

In the last one and a half centuries East Asian countries have been looking more and more like a vast graveyard of the Western civilization. But now Western nations are quickly turning into a huge junkyard for this cultural wasteland named Japan, and some other Asian countries. That is evident from the insatiable appetite the Westerners are showing to Oriental rubbish such as Japan's manga, anime and AKB48. Now they can't tell art from crap. I know it's the ultimate taboo to mention our intellectual degeneration. But let's face it: there is no evolution where there is no dialectical interchange at work among community members.

Now let me come back to dialectic. The textbook of logic defines the last step of the dialectical interchange as Aufhebung. The German word is sometimes translated as "sublation" but to be more precise it means "transcendence" of both the initial thesis and the antithesis to come up with a new thesis, which is now called a synthesis. This word also needs some explanation because it's somewhat tricky and misleading. As I said in Part 1 of my lecture on practical dialectic, a synthesis will never be reached just by meeting halfway.

Here's a quiz: What is the only thing the ape in the White House could change since he took office in 2009?

It's the hardest part of the entire exercise because in order to transcend the two contradictory propositions at a time, we've got to change ourselves mutually, instead of just converging the two. And you can't change yourself just by changing your terminology and rhetoric. You've got to find some catalyst in order to synthesize the different ideas. Sternberg calls it "wisdom," but it's actually a spontaneous commitment to a creative action.

Answer to the quiz: The definition of the word "change."

In this context, it's no accident that it's almost always with those who define themselves primarily as doers when we come up with a synthesis. Quite naturally, they shy away from our online debates because they are too preoccupied with what they are doing in the real world. Instead of giving a feedback by words, they often react to my theses, or just act on their own as if to call for antitheses from me. That's why I classify them into the third category of the visitors to my website.

My big bosses in the Zurich headquarters used to call doers "Indians." Maybe it was meant to be a pejorative. But I talk about doers with the utmost reverence because I define them as professionals. How it sickens me every time I hear an amateurish activist say that he is working hard to enhance public awareness of injustice or wake up ignorant people to reality. Professionals don't care a bit about other people's ignorance.

There is a trap, however, for these doers: the going concern assumption. As Jean-Paul Sartre warned Albert Camus, author of L'Homme Revolte (The Rebel) amid the bloody Algerian Independence War, whatever is his cause, a rebel is prone to developing a mental dependency on his foes over time. That's why these down-to-earth grassroots activists tend to be too conservative. I think this is where my blog can play the role of catalyst for real change.

But this is not to say an NPO needs no professionalism. Real doers should always seek the best or a better tradeoff between their principle and its practicability. I know by experience that you can't optimize the tradeoff just by compromise. A good tradeoff can be achieved only by dialectical interactions. This is the only thing I learned through my 50-year career as a doer. A self-proclaimed man of deeds without professionalism is nothing but a man of words disguised as a doer - i.e. a liar.


Shihoko Fujiwara (center) at
Foreign Correspondents' Club
of Japan

Lara, Chen Tien-shi at her
new office of Waseda
University

In 2006 I met Ms. Shihoko Fujiwara for the first time when she contacted me seeking advice from this blogger. She had just set up the Japanese branch of a Washington-based anti-TIP (trafficking in persons) NGO named Polaris Project.

My advice all came down to this:

"Japan is a country where TIP, prostitution in particular, is subtly legitimized and highly institutionalized. In the face of this deep-rooted 'chain of oppression,' it's not only useless but also potentially harmful to single out 'illegal' prostitution. Our situation is so unique that it's far beyond the comprehension of your headquarters in Washington, let alone the U.S. State Department, the major sponsor of your worldwide activities. TVPA (Trafficking Victims Protection Act) and other U.S. laws mean absolutely nothing here. Neither should you be concerned a bit about fxxking tier placements by Condoleezza Rice (then Secretary of State.)"

Not that I expected Ms. Fujiwara to heed my advice. She was jotting down my words. And that was enough because she was, and still remains, a woman of deeds. I already knew she is a professional activist who knows what has to be done, what can be done, and what can't be done. She didn't look to be one of those daydreamers who refuse to understand you can't do anything without accepting a certain part of the given restraints. It would have meant absolutely nothing to her if I'd said, "Don't single out part of injustice." It goes without saying that to save one is far better than to save none.

Recently I learned from someone at the head office of the organization that PPJ isn't financially affiliated with Washington anymore. Judging from the frequent TV appearances of Fujiwara in recent years, her organization seems to have established itself solidly and is still growing - for better or for worse - which may or may not indicate her approach was wrong. But this leaves me wondering how she's managing the possible shortfall in cash with the subsidies from Washington totally cut off.

I wrote her a mail to suggest some countermeasures.

"They say there is no charitable tradition in Japan. There may be a certain truth in this notion. People who are committed to a cause of philanthropy with Mencius' spontaneity inherent to humanity are rarities in the nation of fake Buddhism. But remember it's not that an ism or a religion drives you to do charity -- it's always the other way around. I think there is a more important factor. If I were rich enough to be a benefactor, I would rather donate to someone who discloses duly audited and fully footnoted financial statements to the public than throw my money in the hat a beggar in the street puts before him. My question in this connection is: Do you have a plan to disclose to the public fullfledged balance sheet and income statement like your sister organization is doing? As you already know, when the Japanese government authorizes your activity as an NPO, it just passes a hot potato to you in exchange for a token grant. But when you have collected a larger amount of donations from wealthy individuals and corporations, you can also expect a larger amount of grants from the government because of the pump-priming effect it has."

It's very uncharacteristic of her, but Ms. Fujiwara hasn't responded thus far. Maybe she is sending me a signal that she no longer needs advice from this blogger, or she is just too busy - I don't know.

I used to attend seminars and conferences she organized, but not anymore. These days it's getting more and more frequent that I receive an invitation. But now it looks more like a fundraiser-type party where donors have fun chitchatting over "modern-day slavery." She may have forgotten that the size of the crowd is not her KPI. Yet I still believe my antithesis to her admirable cause has amounted to something a little more than doing nothing in the last seven years.

Another case in point is Lara, Chen Tien-shi. I became acquainted with her when I wrote a review piece of her book titled Stateless. I signed up for the membership in Stateless Network soon after Lara launched it, because, rather than although, I thought the principle of 1961 UN Convention on Statelessness, on which she'd set her goal, was rubbish, to say the least.

Several weeks ago, the secretariat of Stateless Network sent me a gentle reminder to warn me my annual membership fee was long overdue. In response I sent a mail to Lara, in which I wrote: "I know the Articles of Incorporation say anyone whose due goes delinquent for a certain period is subject to being expelled. At this moment I can't squeeze enough money to meet my obligation. Moreover, I don't want anyone to pay it for me, because that wouldn't solve the real problem. Therefore, please don't hesitate to oust me."

Soon I received her reply mail. She said: "I know we can expect invaluable contributions to our cause from you because you have a lot of experience and knowledge behind you. So let's forget about the money issue for now."

I have made it a rule to refrain, to the extent possible, from being critical about her way of organizing the group's activity. She already knows what I want to say. So It's not her fault that most other members even can't imagine there's something to be added to, or deducted from, the indisputable mantra from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. They are just sitting around there to implement what they have been supposed to implement. That's why I don't want to deliver my heretical lecture to these guys - unless invited very explicitly. But just in case, the syllabus is being readied in my head. It goes like this:

"As we all know from the undisclosed income statement of our organization, we have only two income sources: the token grants from the government and the membership fees we are paying. Unfortunately donations remain just peanuts. Just to simplify our financial situation, let's assume our annual income is 1 million yen and that our experience tells we need 500K yen every year to effectively help one stateless person. Then we can't help any more than 2 people. That should mean we should never attempt to save, say, 10 stateless people, because, then, not a single person could be saved with our money which would now shrink to 100K yen per head. Spreading the limited financial resource this thin would be next to suicidal.

"So the real problem facing us is how to select 2 persons from among many other candidates who keep knocking at the door. Now we know we've got to have a set of criteria to avoid selecting these two purely on an arbitrary basis.

"I would say the single most important criterion is whether or not they have the spirit of self-help. The more a candidate recipient is willing to help himself, the more he deserves to be selected. After all you can't help someone who isn't self-reliant enough. If we chose someone just because he looked to best meet the UNHCR's description of a stateless person, it would be something like pouring water into a bucket with a big hole at its bottom."

In the last four years since we first met, Lara has taken me as seriously as I have taken her because of, rather than despite, the fact that our thoughts are miles apart. There's nothing left to be desired anymore.

My friendship with "DK" also started through my blogging activity. But the opposite is also true of our unusual relationship. When I was planning to launch this website back in 2004, I called a small software company in my neighborhood for some technical assistance. This company assigned the job to DK. He helped me find a decent blogging software and a reliable application hosting service provider from among many other alternatives. After the selection was done, he did the necessary configuration of the system for me.

When I financially went under in 2009, DK offered to shoulder an annual 50K yen I had been paying to the blog hosting company. His assistance didn't stop there. When the City Hall of Yokohama started robbing me of a good part of my pension for my consumption of oxygen, he donated me a monthly 70-100K yen over a 10-month period. It's funny, but this person sometimes reminds me that apes never do charity.

Aside from supporting me, DK does what he thinks he should do as an IT professional and the father of his 6-year-old son named Kai. As I wrote in the above-linked post, he recently found Kai a piano teacher after interviewing several candidates. According to him, one of his selection criteria was the ability to arouse Kai's interest in Baroque music not because he wants his son to become a musician, but because he wants to nurture respect for humanity in his son. Obviously DK has learned his lessons from my miserable failure that it's the surest way to conformism and mediocrity to instill, or let someone instill, contempt for civilization in a human being in his developmental stage.

I shouldn't forget to mention other Type 3 users of my blog, especially Dr. Hiroshi Shiono and the dentist. (The dentist's name is withheld because he is breaking the paramount rules of Japan's medical cartel by treating me all for free.) The two men have been doing extraordinary things to me just because my allegation against the cartel has resonated with them.

In the third and last installment of this dialectic series, I'll talk about Jean-Paul Sartre, the author of Critique of Dialectical Reason (1960.) In earlier paragraphs of this post, I said it's unlikely we will reach a synthesis on this website because we are not doers here. But it's a different story when it comes to a philosopher or anyone who is in a writing/speaking occupation. To him words are deeds, and deeds are words.

You may ask: "What about a blogger?" My answer: "Don't ask me." · read more (26 words)