Friday, 24 September 2010

'Caving' in Japan, China and News Corp; The truth is out there. Allegedly

So, it appears Japan has "caved" to China by releasing the "fishing boat" captain and China has "won" the diplomatic "doo-dahh" over who gets to suck the last of the earth's resources from the sea and burn up so we can have more 3D TVs. Let Our Man just state for the "record" that he "hates" the "sodding" "overuse" of "sodding" quote marks. "OK???"

How does Our Man know Japan has dropped its only card to play and therefore the place is even more ungovernable than before? Because the Wall Street Journal has been looking through Twitter and found people who used words like "cave" and "China" and "DPJ sucks" and concluded that it must be true, although they wouldn't flat out say that because that would be unjournalistic. No, they just quote their unnamed buddies mouthing off.

Now, let's be clear. The WSJ is owned by the source of all evil in the world, Rupert Murdoch, the man who single-handedly got Ed Koch (that's "ch" as in "church", not "ck" as in "cock") elected as New York Mayor, thus heralding the end of consensus politics and the beginning of stand-on-your-own-two-knees free-market evangelism cancer that has spread the globe.

But Our Man digresses, as usual. He, of course, has no idea what the truth of the matter is with Greater Abiko. Could be, Our illustrious pencil-pushers caved. Could be they were told to cave by Our Overlords in Washington. Could be it's part of a larger deal to stop this spat before the iPad imports dry up. Whatever the reason, doubt the answer will be in the WSJ. Unless they find it by accident. But, hey, don't get their chairman on the news, he doesn't like folk asking difficult questions about his minions wiretapping public figures (also, marvel at how the "journalist" "caves" before his boss):

Monday, 20 September 2010

10 things every journo must know to survive

Dearest journos,

Please don't take this the wrong way, but the game's nearly up and you've gotta move on.

Now, granted, if you are reeeeally old school, you no-doubt cannot fathom this despite Our Man getting the girls in the typing pool to copytake directly from Our Man's mouth, but Our Man is hoping maybe the tea lady can explain the message that's in the leaves:

If Granny Press thinks all you have to do is give the journo kids a corporate blog, a company twitter ID, a digi cam and a stylebook and the THIRST for quality news will bring the good times back, she (granny, remember?) is WRONG. Here's why:

1. The public doesn't respect journos. Largely never has, and never will, so why dya think your mainstream media name carries any cash cache?

2. The only qualification you as a journo have over bloke/blokette on the street is that you saw/understood something that happened and he/she didn't.

3. If my mate/twitter buddy/bloke in the pub saw/understood something, I'd rather hear it from him/her/it than some puffed up journo organisation.

4. Now I can, thanks to blogs and Facebook and Twitter.

5. And I can talk back to the puffed up tossers.

6. Are you a puffed up professional tosser who thinks I need your patronising, unoriginal DULL prose?

7. Yes? Then you will die.

8. No? Got something to say, and you want me to listen?

9. Here's whatcha do: Tell me shit I didn't know, link to folk who know even more than you - even if they are unpaid (and especially if they are unpaid). And do it all on twitter (or Facebook if you must) because blogs are not where it's at anymore, because because because in the age of twitter...

10. We're all journos now.

Don't believe Our Man? Then check this guy out who says the same thing, only better. (Secret handshake to @Robertodevido).

Yours faithfully,


Edited for your pleasure at 23.21: sorry this is a dog'sdinner of a post, the editor is on the computer and Our Man didn't dare disturb her, so did it all by iTupewriter (pictured above in Norwich Castle museum, can you believe?)

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Mainichi Shimbun: Study abroad and shaft the Yanks

Buddha save us. The Mainichi is weighing here in on the pressing issue of not many Japanese studying at universities abroad. This is not because a) nobody's got any money for jollies in Yankee Doodle land or that b) everyone speaks Japanese here.

Our Man didn't have the patience to make it all the way through the long and winding road that is a Mainichi editorial (they lost him as they meandered off to the eighth century when monks were writing letters back to Japan on boats bound for China, no doubt the earliest example of junk mail, GEDDITTT??!!?, but Our Man digresses). But apparently the Youth of Today just ain't got the balls like the older generation (that writes editorials in the Mainichi).

So, skip to the end like Our Man, and you get this sage advice in defence of public cash to hammer a bit of international learning in the kids:

Okinawa residents who were selected to study abroad before the island prefecture was returned to Japan's sovereignty in 1972 formed a friendship group called Kinmon (Golden Gate) Club. They named their friendship group after the symbol of San Francisco where they entered the United States.

Former Okinawa Gov. and former House of Councillors member Masahide Ota is one of them. He was able to make straightforward assertions about the concentration of U.S. bases in the prefecture and visit Washington to hold negotiations with top U.S. officials apparently because of his experience of studying in the country.

It is exciting to learn something in an unknown world and use that knowledge for the benefit of society. The youths of today should be more proactive about studying, even if they do not have any particular sense of mission. (By Kenji Tamaki, expert senior writer)

That is to say,

study abroad so that you can shaft the Yanks in words they understand.

So that's what globalisation means, eh readers?

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Kan the Man wrestles crown from Shadow Shogun Ozawa or something

Oh, just a quick note if you are popping by from Shisaku looking for some guidance on how the BIG ELECTION went. The nice guy won, the nasty one didn't. That is, Kan the Man, the so-far less than impressive newish professional wrestler defeated the Shadow Shogun Ozzie Ozawa for the belt.

He won 700 and some points to 400 or 500 or so, forget which now. The scoring system of course depends on the same transparent decision-making process that the judges have been using to solve all thorny issues like foreigner sufferage, eco-rebates for buying Toyotas and catching whales for scientific research:

An incredibly impenetrable formula that only makes sense to Yomiuri Shimbun graph writers. And then they make it up as they go along.

Anyway, rejoice! Kan has saved his ass for another couple of months and Ozawa will be out of the picture for a week or two.

The judges' decision is never final.


Ozawa v. Kan: The final inane speculation

It's too late to rig up another sumo-meter, and frankly, who gives a shit? But, there is a terribly important election of great import. No, not Miss Universe, silly, Kan v Ozawa aka purity v corruption, incompetence v arm-twisting, six of one v half a dozen of another.

In short, Carter v Nixon (secret handshake to @Durf for that observation).

Well, the vote is hours away, so there really is no point in speculating. So, I think if Ozawa wins, and Kan manages to also win, it will be a win-win situation. However, if one or other of the two heavyweights fails to win, the true losers will be the people of Japan.

Don't worry readers, whoever wins will be out on their arse in less than a year.

Monday, 13 September 2010

Yomiuri Ministry of Truth on the move

Our Man understands the Gomiuri Shimbun, the world's most popular paper, if you believe their figures (and why not, The Virgin Mary often appears in the tonkatsu grease at their top floor canteen) has moved its offices for a bit to Ginza, the posh-perfume shopping centre of Tokyo.

They are fixing up their 1960s high-rise bomb shelter of a building in Otemachi into a des res more befitting of their status (an old-folks home?)

The new HQ will be complete in 2014. Like the thought chaps, but are you fellas sure there will still be newspapers then?

Hope they keep the metal railings at the back door where Our Man used to tether his bike.

Friday, 10 September 2010

I want what he had

... or maybe not.

Secret handshake to @TokyoRich

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Couple more bot journos on the dole

If anybody has been following Our Man's little bot-creation on Twitter, The Our Man in Abiko Daily, well he yanked the plug on it just now. If you didn't notice, that's all well and good, but if you had been looking forward to its daily appearance in your twitter stream, WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU?

Anyway, Our Man will explain more all about his battle with the bots and his editorial differences with his staff when he has a bit more time. In the meantime, here's a picture of a manhole yesterday.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Can I get a non-battery-powered witness?

My fellow Abikonians,

Can Our Man put in an order now, while he is still more often than not in control of his bodily functions, that when the time comes to lock him away in the Yomiuri Home for Demented Ex-Hacks, don't force him to repeat "It's cute, isn't it?" to a battery-powered robot seal, which barks a friendly greeting when someone comes to empty his bed pan. Just club him to death, or put him in with that nice elderly Jewish gentleman, Prof. Adelstein. He once wrote a book and travelled the world, back in the days of air travel, has he ever told you?


Saturday, 4 September 2010

iPhone, iCame, iSoldOut

The Yes We Kan may be nearing its sell-by date, so thank goodness for Apple then and smartypants cyber-subs, there's a bunch of punny possibilities with iPhone, the product journos never tire of providing with free publicity.*

Oh, look Twitter clickers, here's one from the pros:

*This post excepted because Our Man had his fingers crossed at the time and his tin foil hat on.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

A picture, a thousand words and Ichiro Ozawa

By the way, loved the crop on the mug shot that went with the Ozawa decides to put himself before party and country story in today's Japan Times print edition. Sadly, it's not on their website but it looked decidedly like one Our Man did before... er here in fact. Top marks. Glad someone is reading Our Man ;)

BREAKING: Ooh, here it is thanks to the power of twitter.