Saturday, April 14, 2012

"the man which was healed standing with them" - A Nuclear History in Japan

Around the Tokyo Station

A Nuclear History in Japan 

It started with the post-WWII relationship between Japan and the US.
Key players got nuclear ball rolling
Cash paved the way even amid safety doubts on high, ineptitude
The saga begins in summer 1953. Future Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone was then a young politician studying at Harvard University. He learned from politically connected professors that the United States was about to allow the knowledge and technology that built atomic bombs to be exported for the peaceful use of nuclear power. 
In December 1953, President Dwight D. Eisenhower announced his "Atoms for Peace" initiative that provided U.S. nuclear technology to allies like resource-poor Japan that wanted to harness the atom. 
Nakasone reacted immediately, leading efforts in the Diet in late 1953 and early 1954 to draw up Japan's first-ever budget for nuclear power research. He assembled a group of like-minded allies in and out of government to help convince the public of the necessity to invest in this new technology.

One of the most influential was Matsutaro Shoriki, head of the Yomiuri Shimbun and head of the newly created Nippon TV.  Shoriki was jailed after World War II as a suspected Class-A war criminal and sent to Sugamo Prison in Tokyo. But he was released a couple of years later without being charged and allegedly became a CIA informant.  Shoriki was, like his friend Nakasone, a strong supporter of nuclear power.

So, it is very interesting that the nuclear policy of Japan after WWII was promoted by some influential politicians and businessmen in the Media sector that had a linkage with the US through CIA, etc.

"After the world war, the CIA worked closely with Mr. Shoriki to advance the campaign for nuclear energy in Japan. It did so because this man had not only the necessary connections to politics and economics, but also the power to mobilise his newspaper and television empire". 
During years of research in the United States National Archives and Records Administration, Arima discovered 474 pages of CIA files, documenting in detail the progress of the introduction of nuclear technology to Japan. From one of these, he quotes the following:"Relations with Podam have now progressed to the stage where outright cooperation can be initiated". 
"Podam" was the code name for the member of parliament and CIA asset, Matsutaro Shoriki, who would later become president of the atomic energy authority he founded, as well as minister for science and technology. Shoriki is today regarded as father of Japan's nuclear power.

But Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) was not innocent in this trend.
Intense Pressure 
It was into this environment of government-led nuclear development that Kikawada stepped when he became president of Tepco in 1961. The company had begun research into atomic energy and was already looking for potential sites for a reactor in the late 1950s, according to its official history. 
"It was inevitable that we would rely more on nuclear for future power supply as nuclear fuel needs less foreign currency than oil," the official history said.
It was a period of rapid economic expansion in Japan and employees at the country's power utilities were under intense pressure to feed the growth.
Fukushima prefecture began working to attract a utility to build a nuclear plant in the region in 1958, according to Tepco. Shortly after Kikawada took over, the towns of Okuma and Futaba agreed to host a nuclear station. 
Kikawada, who appears balding in spectacles wearing a western-style suit and tie in black and white photos, still had a decision to make. 
"Kikawada once said that building a nuclear plant is like doing a deal with the devil," Soichiro Tahara, author of "Documentary, Tokyo Electric," said in an interview in August. He changed his mind in part because he didn’t want the government to control atomic energy after it had led Japan into a disastrous war, Tahara said.
"If Kikawada had decided to go against nuclear power, the government would have taken it over," he said.
But, there are of course some types of Japanese who have played some role in the unique or opposite direction in the Japanese culture in terms of public awareness of nuclear energy.

Reflecting on the experience of World War II, Yoko Ono's peace art series is deeply connected to the two atomic bombs that fell on Japan. She even awarded peace grants to Mordechai Vanunu, a former Israeli nuclear technician who exposed Israel's acquisition of nuclear weapons. (In 2010, Yoko Ono herself won the Hiroshima Art Prize). The contemporary artist Yasumasa Morimura also addressed the haunted legacy of Japan with "A Requiem: Mishima," and appealed to young Japanese artists to think about the post-war Japanese history, and their own artistic expression. 
After success in the United States, Japanese artist Yukinori Yanagi made the artwork "Forbidden Box" about the atomic bomb, in collaboration with American institutions. He then moved to Hiroshima, and started the Hiroshima Art Project. His life work, "Seirensho" in Inujima Island, exists in an abandoned copper refinery, and is a walk-in collage dedicated to the life of Yukio Mishima, a nationalist author who criticized the cost that modernization was taking on Japan and advocated for full independence and the abolition of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty. 
The younger generation of Japanese artists has been less aware of the dark side of the postwar legacy. But in the wake of this new disaster, Japan is in a position to rethink itself in a way it could not in its past. This is not just about changing energy policy. The Japanese people need to think about the bigger picture, a way for the nation to move beyond the Post-War regime towards something new and more human. The most important role of the artist in society is not about building infrastructure, but about promoting ideals that open up new perspectives.

(to be continued...)

*** *** *** ***

Act 4:14 And beholding the man which was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.
Act 4:15 But when they had commanded them to go aside out of the council, they conferred among themselves,
Act 4:16 Saying, What shall we do to these men? for that indeed a notable miracle hath been done by them is manifest to all them that dwell in Jerusalem; and we cannot deny it.

Friday, April 13, 2012

"when the devil had ended all the temptation" - What Should Have Been Done in Fukushima

The Tokyo Station
Tokyo, Japan

What Should Have Been Done in Fukushima Daiichi

A Japanese scientist reviewed the Fukushima Daiichi accident to find what should have been done in the Fukushima Daiichi plant after the 3/11 Disaster of 2011.

1. Continue full efforts to have emergency engines run.

2. Add 1600 tons of water in the Isolation Steam Condenser (IC) to the cooling water.

3. Recover the sea-water pumps, damaged by the huge tsunami, so as to make them work and cool the water, from the Isolation Steam Condenser (IC), running through the pressure reactors.

4. Connect to external power supply to move the sea-water pumps.

In other word, cooling water must have been circulated by any means into and out of the pressure vessels of the reactor units No.1 to No.4 of the Fukushima Daiichi plant.   Then meltdowns of nuclear fuel must have been avoided.  As a result, hydrogen-gas explosions must have  been avoided.  And, to have the cooling water run, external power sources should be secured if emergency diesel generators inside the Fukushima Daiichi plant could not be used.

But in fact, an emergency grid line to the Fukushima Daiichi plant was cut off due to the M9.0 earthquake.  This grid was run by Tohoku Electric Power Company to distribute electricity from other generating plant, while electricity generated in the Fukushima Daiichi plant was transmitted to the Tokyo area through another grid run by Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO).  The emergency grid line was prepared by Tohoku Electric Power Company to the Fukushima Daiichi as an emergency power source to various equipment in the Fukushima Daiichi for use when turbines for generating electricity from nuclear reactors were stopped and all the other diesel generators were also stopped in the Fukushima Daiichi.

The Japanese scientist also pointed a fact that then Japanese Prime Minister Mr. Naoto Kan refused to accept proposed help from the US immediately after the occurrence of the 3/11 Disaster.  The US reportedly offered help with a plan to fix the nuclear accident by decommissioning reactors of the Fukushima Daiichi plant.  Mr. Kan probably did not want to  scrap Fukushima Daiichi reactors.  But as days passed by without improvement of the situation, PM Mr. Kan began to accept support from the US, since the No.1 Reactor Unit of the Fukushima Daiichi plant was originally designed by US GE.

So, the nuclear accident could have been prevented if TEPCO and PM Mr. Kan had taken reasonable measures immediately after the reactor units of  the Fukushima Daiichi plant lost all the power sources, due to the big earthquake and the huge tsunami, needed to have pumps and other equipment run for cooling nuclear fuel inside the pressure vessels.
IC: Isolation Steam Condenser

*** *** *** ***

Luk 4:13 And when the devil had ended all the temptation, he departed from him for a season.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

"Art thou greater than our father Jacob" - A Japanese Christian and Emperor

 People around Tokyo
Enjoying Cherry Blossoms

A Japanese Christian and Emperor

The military of the Empire of Japan started to go out of control of the Imperial Government by occupying whole Manchuria through a plot.
The Mukden Incident, also known as the Manchurian Incident, was a staged event engineered by Japanese military personnel as a pretext for invading the northern part of China, known as Manchuria, in 1931. 
This incident alarmed the US which was aiming at launching remunerative business in Manchuria and China.

So, the Japanese emperor worried about aggravation of the Japan-US relationship.  So, he invited a notable Christian professor to the palace, asking him to go to the US and explain the position of Japan.  Accordingly, Inazo Nitobe traveled to the US, delivering a lecture about 100 times all over the US, though he was not welcomed in most of cases.
Nitobe Inazo (1 September 1862 – 15 October 1933) was a Japanese agricultural economist, author, educator, diplomat, politician, and Christian during the pre-WW2 period... 
When the League of Nations was established in 1920, Nitobe became one of the Under-Secretaries General of the League, and moved to Geneva, Switzerland. He became a founding director of the International Committee on Intellectual Cooperation (which later became UNESCO under the United Nations' mandate)... 
After his retirement from the League of Nations, Nitobe briefly served in the House of Peers in the Japanese Imperial Parliament; and he delivered a speech against militaristic prime minister Giichi Tanaka in the aftermath of the Huanggutun Incident (1928). He held critical views on increasing militarism in Japan in the early 1930s, and was devastated by Japan's withdrawal from the League of Nations in 1933 over the Manchurian Crisis and the Lytton Report. 
In October 1933, Nitobe attended a conference in Banff, Alberta of the Institute of Pacific Relations, where the background and research papers from the Japanese delegation largely defended Japanese expansionist policies.[4] On his way home from the conference, Nitobe's pneumonia took a turn for the worse and was rushed to the Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Following an operation he died on 15 October 1933.
Even before this occasion, Showa Emperor often invited Nitobe to the imperial palace in Tokyo and got information about the US.  The Emperor fully trusted Christian Nitobe who even had an American wife.  It is said that the Emperor had said to Nitobe, "As the military got so much influence nowadays, I am afraid that a war might start with the US.  Would you please go to the US and find a chance to prevent such a war through dialogues?  But please make this mission secret."

This episode tells that Showa Emperor of Japan was free from a prejudice against Christianity even before WWII.  So, it is no wander that after WWII the Japanese Imperial House accepted very positively the US occupation of Japan, since the US introduced various democratic systems based on the spirit of American Christianity into the Japanese society.

Accordingly, incumbent Emperor of Japan, a son of Showa Emperor, has empress who graduated from a Christian women's university in Tokyo.

*** ***

In addition, Inazo Nitobe wrote a book titled Bushido in 1900 to explain Japanese spiritualism and emphasize that Japan was not a rude and backward non-Christian country.  Then US President Theodore Roosevelt was highly moved so as to buy 60 copies of Bushido and distribute them to his children and friends; the president specifically encouraged students of the West Point Military Academy and the Annapolis Naval Academy to read the book.
Nitobe was a prolific writer. He published many scholarly books as well as books for general readers (see below). He also contributed hundreds of articles to popular magazines and newspapers. Nitobe, however, is perhaps most famous in the west for his work Bushido: The Soul of Japan (1900), which was one of the first major works on samurai ethics andJapanese culture written originally in English for Western readers (The book was subsequently translated into Japanese and many other languages). Although sometimes criticized[who?] as portraying the samurai in terms so Western as to take away some of their actual meaning, this book nonetheless was a pioneering work of its kind.
*** *** *** ***

Joh 4:11 The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water?
Joh 4:12 Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle?
Joh 4:13 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again:

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

"behold, angels came" - A Bar in New York

Cherry Blossoms
Around Tokyo
In the Spring of Japan

A Bar in New York

There was a bar in New York, and probably it must still do business.

It was a no-woman admitted bar for the policy of the owner, but there was one exception: A widow of a soldier who died from a bite injury made by a lizard during the Spanish-American War.  She somewhat lost her mind and earned money by selling peanuts she carried in her apron to customers of the bar.  She alone was admitted into the bar but no other women.

So, the queer woman sewed and made a small Star-Spangled Banner for the owner out of gratitude.  The humble flag was displayed somewhere in the bar for decades.

This episode is introduced in a book written by a Japanese author/translator who visited New York almost once a year since 1980's.  Bookstores and bars are the places where he mostly spent his time in New York.

*** *** *** ***

Mat 4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

"they that were about him with the twelve" - To be a Hero or To Enjoy the Life

The Tokyo Station Inside...

To be a Hero or To Enjoy the Life

Any problem in this world is rooted in the gap between the rich and the poor.

Therefore, in order to solve any serious problem, you have to decrease this gap between the rich and the poor.  As the first step, you have to be poor yourself.  That is why Christ Jesus became a poor man.  Yet, all the teachings of Christ Jesus converge at practice of becoming poor.  So, as Christ Jesus told, if everybody decided to follow Him, everybody would have to be poor.  But by becoming poor, you cannot enjoy your life any more, though you can be a hero probably authorized by Christ Jesus.

Accordingly, when there are no rich men at all in the US, all the problems in the US will be solved, since every problem is a result of the gap between the rich and the poor.  And, Christ Jesus kindly taught the way for a rich man to be poor: "Sell all you belongings and give all the money you get to the poor and follow me."

This issue of being rich and being poor is one of the oldest ones for mankind.  And, it has been the major source of problems in any human society.  But so far as now, mankind cannot achieve this state of no gap between the rich and the poor.

To solve a 10 dollar-scale problem, you will get $100 from somewhere while causing a 1,000 dollar-scale problem.  To solve a 1000 dollar-scale problem, you will have to get $10,000 from somewhere while causing a 100,000 dollar-scale problem.  And to  solve a 100,000 dollar-scale problem, you will have to get $1 million from somewhere while causing a 10 million dollar-scale problem.  This chain of aggravation never ceases.  But, in this process, every rich man enjoys his or her life while every poor person is suffering.  To put an end to this vicious circle, the gap between the rich and the poor should be removed; everybody should be poor, if anything.

At least, this principle should be taught in every primary school all over the world, though nobody would like to live up to this teaching.  It is impossible, but it must be understood that it is the very goal of mankind.

However, how can you say that pursuit of wealth must be regulated?  How can you specify legally that a man should not be richer beyond a certain level.  For example, can you provide in law that assets or income beyond $1 million should be all taken by the government?  Then, 100 super-rich men would hire 10,000 people to protest against this movement.  And these 10,000 people would employ 1 million people to counter this movement.  Further, these 1 million people would bribe 100 million people with any type of promises of supply of profit.  They will all actively work for their cause overwhelming simple and innocent poor people.  Politically this movement would be blocked.  Then the gap between the rich and the poor will be further increasing.

This kind of situations can be only effectively addressed by heroes who voluntarily abandon their wealth and follow the teaching of Christ Jesus no matter how many other rich men continue their sinful way of life.

But if you say this teaching to any rich man, he would simply laugh at you.  But, such a rich man will be surely condemned by God and he will fall into the pits of hell.  Everything depends on this truth and faith: a rich man is destined to the hell.

It is the final solution in a larger scale over the boundary of this world.  Indeed, when all the rich men go to hell from this world, there will be no problems any more in the society where everyone is poor.  They will use any wealth to solve a problem.  But this is not a world based on communism or socialism but based on the teaching of Christ Jesus.  No leaders can enjoy any riches and worldly power, a source of wealth.  No executives hold exclusive power in a party or an organization, but everybody is poor sharing the same executive power, since power is a source of wealth.

This is the goal of mankind.  We have to move onward to the world without the gap between the poor and the rich.  There will be no problems at all eventually, since we will have heroes everywhere.

Even in the US, there are many children living in abandoned cars or cars in abandoned places.

In China absolute poverty is being conquered but relative poverty persists.

In Cambodia that has survived the Pol Pot crazy cleanup revolution targeting rich men and the middle class, a poor girl cannot go to school due to poverty today.

Of course, there are some homeless people even in Tokyo...

(to be continued...)

*** *** *** ***

Mar 4:9 And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
Mar 4:10 And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked of him the parable.
Mar 4:11 And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables:

Monday, April 09, 2012

"If thou be the Son of God" - The Two Major Parties in Japan

Tokyo Stations

The Two Major Parties in Japan

The ruling Democratic Party of Japan is now trying hard to pass a bill to increase the consumption tax rate from 5% to 10% under the initiative of Prime Minister Mr. Yoshihiko Noda.

But the largest opposition party LDP also intends to increase the tax rate.  However, as the LDP aims at getting the DPJ cornered and forcing PM Mr. Noda to hold a general election, the LDP does not support the bill proposed by the Noda Cabinet.  Indeed, if PM Mr. Noda cannot have the tax-rate-increase bill passed by the parliament, he will suffer big damage.  PM Mr. Noda himself said that he would risk his political life to achieve the tax rate increase.  Accordingly, if the LDP does not cooperate in the parliament and the proposed bill is rejected, PM Mr. Noda might call a general election to bring the case directly to voters.  It is what the conservative LDP wants, since the poll shows that the LDP will win the liberal DPJ in the next national election as the DPJ has failed in various key issues in these years, including the recovery from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident.

But objectively speaking, it is very strange that the two major parties competing with each other   set forth the common goal of raising the consumption tax rate from 5% to 10% in order to improve the financial status of the Japanese Government.  And, more strange is that the opposition party is trying to take over power by promising voters a rise in the consumption tax rate, since 50% of voters are against the tax-rate rise while 40% support it.

Nonetheless, Japanese voters seem to think that if it is inevitable to raise the tax rate it should be entrusted to the LDP with a longer history of having been a ruling party than the DPJ.  It is general judgment of the Japanese public that the more pro-American LDP is more professional than the more pro-Chinese DPJ.  The LDP is fully rooted in capitalism but the DPJ is partly from socialism.

What is more interesting is that it is the Ministry of Finance that is behind both the parties.  The Ministry is willing to raise the tax rate no matter which party holds power and organizes the cabinet.  Before taking power through the 2009 general election, the DPJ claimed that it would not increase the consumption tax rate; former PM Mr. Hatoyama of the DPJ  stuck to this policy.  But following prime ministers of the DPJ regime, Mr. Kan and then Mr. Noda drastically changed their policies.  Now, PM Mr. Noda has abolished the election manifesto of the DPJ for the 2009 election and is pursuing the tax rate increase so firmly.  So, it is thought that elite bureaucrats of the Ministry of Fiance has worked so hard on PM Mr. Noda to succeed in brainwashing him and making him get determined to follow the policy of the Ministry of Finance.

It is true that national debts of Japan has been accumulated to be equal to 200% of its GDP.  But, the Japanese Government and the Japanese people have more financial resources and assets to cover the debts, though they are so huge.  Many economists and experts think that there is no need to increase the tax rate especially as Japan is still in the aftermath of the 3/11 Disaster of 2011.  In addition, Japan is still in deflation.  It is against a basic theory of economics to impose heavier tax on people while a nation is in deflation.

Of course there are some minor parties and groups of Japanese politicians who are against the increase of the consumption tax rate.  Especially the Ozawa faction in the DPJ is expected to vote against the proposed tax bill running counter to the top of the DPJ Mr. Noda.  In this case, the situation will become more complicated, since the powerful lawmaker Mr. Ozawa seems to plan to run for the election scheduled this September to choose the new top leader of the DPJ.  Nonetheless Mr. Oazaw, an ex-top leader of the DPJ, is now waiting for a judicial judgment by the Tokyo District Court where he is persecuted for illegal political fund reporting.  Depending on the coming judgement, to be given in April, the situation can be more complicated as Mr. Ozawa is now actually fighting the party leader/prime minister Mr. Noda over the agenda that the DPJ should or should not tie up with the LDP, which dislikes Mr. Ozawa, so as to pass the tax bill.  As Mr. Ozawa has a 40-year-long career in politics and controls about 100 DPJ lawmakers, he is a big enemy for PM Mr. Noda with only a 20-year-long career in national politics of Japan.

So, Japan has now two big issues: the consumption tax rate increase and the restart of nuclear power generation which is almost completely stopped since Fukushima Daiichi.

*** *** *** ***

Luk 4:9 And he brought him to Jerusalem, and set him on a pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down from hence:
Luk 4:10 For it is written, He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee:
Luk 4:11 And in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
Luk 4:12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
I was walking in an area around the Tokyo Station.

There was a lane between rows of buildings which had boulevard cherry trees.  What made me surprise was some groups of people were sitting under cherry trees and holding a Japanese style of party.  Restaurants on the lane also provided tables under cherry trees so that their customers could eat and drink under cherry trees.  The lane was somehow crowded, but cars were prevented from coming in with security guards at the both ends of the lane.  So, they were enjoying cherry blossom viewing parties just within hundred meters from the Tokyo Station, the traffic center of Japan.

And, there is one underground railroad station of Japan Railways, which is not a city traffic company or a subway company, next to the Tokyo Station, though there are several stations which are adjacent to Tokyo.  It was built in 1972.  But strangely for the first time I used the station on this Sunday.

And on this day, I was wearing a new wrist watch and new shoes as I purchased them last Saturday very economically, but I purchased a $25 book on this day in a shop near the Tokyo Station.