Category Archives: Others

【Opinion】A post-Trump world – Japan should go along with the global trend: second of two parts (Feb. 18, 2017)

[By Mika Tsutsumi, journalist] Ever since Donald Trump became the candidate for the U.S. presidential election, we Japanese have been flooded with almost hysterical criticism of him whenever we read a newspaper or turn on the TV. No reports have been made on the actual situation or the historic background behind Trump’s policies, such as the temporary immigration ban and the building of a wall along the Mexican border, and all the coverage were based on reports critical of Trump coming from U.S. media organizations supporting Hillary Clinton. How many times have we witnessed the phenomenon of media unanimously bashing a particular person or an organization? If we don’t look … Continue reading

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【Opinion】A post-Trump world – the truth behind “America First” policies: first of two parts (Feb. 17, 2017)

[By Mika Tsutsumi, journalist] After former U.S. President Barack Obama shattered the illusions of his supporters that he would bring about change as he had promised in his inauguration speech, American voters chose Donald Trump as the new president in the hope that changes would come this time around. The new administration has begun, with Trump pledging in his inaugural address to transfer the political power controlled by a small group of wealthy people in Washington and give it back to the people to “make America great again,” filling people in and outside the country with hopes and worries. He often uses the term “America First,” which is interpreted by … Continue reading

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【News】 Avian flu outbreaks in Taiwan: Every emergency measure taken for containment (Feb. 19, 2017)

Taiwan’s government decided to adopt emergency measures banning transportations of poultries and eggs throughout the country, since outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian flu viruses have been continuing particularly in a central part of the country. The government is urgently making effort to contain the spread of the bird flu as early as possible, taking into account a lesson learnt in 2015 that a delay in taking measures required at the initial stage caused a spread of the disease in many areas. According to the official announcement, the transportations of poultries will be totally banned for seven days starting from February 17, and the meat processing houses are ordered to suspend … Continue reading

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【News】Project of creating mythical “red string of fate” aims to raise public awareness on genetic engineering (Jan. 31, 2017)

A project is under way to realize the East Asian mythology that the gods tie an invisible “red string of fate” between those who are destined to fall in love. Sputniko!, a mathematician-turned-artist and an assistant professor of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Media Lab in the United States, approached Hideki Sezutsu, head of the Transgenic Silkworm Research Unit at the National Agriculture and Food Research Organization, with an idea to spin the mythical string by inserting genes that produce oxytocin, widely referred to as the love hormone, into silkworm eggs. The project, which utilizes genetically engineered silkworms developed in Japan, is also aimed at giving consumers, many of whom … Continue reading

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【Opinion】Reengineering member associations of agricultural cooperatives (Jan. 24, 2017)

[By Yoichi Tashiro, professor emeritus at Otsuma Women’s University] Agricultural cooperatives are in the middle of eagerly designing and implementing their midterm three-year plan including reviewing their sales and procurement business, as well as the agriculture promotion plan and the self-reform plan. While the situation surrounding global agriculture is in turmoil along with Donald Trump becoming the president of the United States, the farm coops must tackle challenges of reform in order to live up to farmers’ expectations. Meanwhile, the agriculture working group of the government’s Regulatory Reform Promotion Council suggested halving the number of farm coops engaging in financial business in three years. If financial business is separated from … Continue reading

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