Every Sunday we gather the week’s weird and interesting Japanese news and present it to you in our Sunday News column. It might not always be hard-hitting news, but we hope that it still informs and entertains you. Enjoy!
NHK on changing the Japanese constitution: Last week, I mentioned that the Japanese prime minister and the political party in power in Japan have thought about amending the constitution. This week, What Japan Thinks rounded up public opinion on amending the constitution and the sentiment of the people is a resounding “meh.” Opinion is split more or less evenly three ways on changing the document, which probably means that nothing’s likely to get done and people won’t care about it, anyway. Win-win!
Daniel Radcliffe To Star In Crime Saga ‘Tokyo Vice’: Jake Adelstein’s yakuza memoir Tokyo Vice is being adapted movie, which is pretty exciting on its own, but the big names being attached to the project is pretty astounding. Big-time music video director Anthony Mandler is set to direct, and Harry Potter wonderboy Daniel Radcliffe is tagged to star in the movie. Yer a yakuza, ‘arry!
Cool Biz season kicks off across Japan: Summer’s right around the corner in Japan, which means it’s time for “Cool Biz,” the Japanese program to get working people to dress more casually to cut down on the energy used to power air conditioners. Unfortunately, Cool Biz is kicking off during an unseasonably cool time in Japan, with temperatures hovering around 60 °F. Guess we can’t bust out the Hawaiian shirts quite yet! [via News On Japan]
Weaker Yen Ups Cost of Life’s Simple Pleasures: We’ve talked a bit about what it means that Japan’s currency, the yen, is getting weaker and weaker, but there are consequences to the weak yen that are more terrible than anybody could have possibly imagined. A 10%-15% price increase on toilet paper? The horror . . . the horror.
LDP plans expansion of JET program:Exciting news for people who want to work in Japan! Japan’s JET program, which hires foreigners to teach English in Japan, is planned to double in size in the next couple of years, bringing a JET language assistant to every single elementary, middle, and high school in the entire country. The bad news? Incidents of kancho per capita are expected to skyrocket.
Putin mentions even split of disputed territory in talks with Abe: source: For the first time in nearly a decade, the heads of state of Japan and Russia met this week to discuss the biggest issues affecting the two countries; among them, coming up with a peace agreement to end WWII (seriously), and divvying up some of the islands that the two countries have been fighting over for over 100 years. Exciting times! [via News On Japan]