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Japan's snow country battles shrinking and ageing population

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Takimng up herewith recent Japanese News by Media.
Fro these two or three days, we have much snow here in Japan.
In Kagoshima and/ or in Nagasaki, they experienced snowy days.
Japan's snow country battles shrinking and ageing population
Jan 10, 2010 by China Post

Tons of snow are piled up on the roof of an old farmhouse. Two old men tirelessly shovel the snow off, clearing the roof bit by bit. It's back-breaking work, but the old folks do not have much choice. There are not too many young people left to give them a hand. The fresh snowfall pushed the snow accumulation to 230 centimeters in some parts of the town in Japan's northern province of Yamagata, which is also famous for quality rice and hot springs.
However, Tsunan is more troubled by turning grey than by the white blanket covering it every winter. Like most rural areas in Japan, Tsunan faces serious threats from depopulation and ageing as people aged 65 or older account for 35.4 percent of its population of 11,400. (China Post)

Low pressure systems hit Japan with snow, wind gusts
Jan 13, 2010 by AP

Snow and strong winds struck a wide area of Japan on Wednesday due to low pressure systems, shutting down an airport in Nagasaki Prefecture and blocking most of the highways in the Kyushu region. The Japan Meteorological Agency said snow blanketed much of the Kyushu region, with 9 centimeters of snow observed in the city of Nagasaki, where more than 5 cm of snow accumulation was recorded for the first time since 2001. The city of Kumamoto had its first snowfall since December 2005, where snow piled up some 7 cm. (AP)

Japan's 40 richest
Jan 12, 2010 by Forbes

There were big winners and losers in 2009. Among the notable gainers is a 32-year-old techie, now Asia's youngest self-made billionaire. Topping the list for a second year was Tadashi Yanai, the retailer whose affordable Uniqlo clothing stores are drawing customers amid a belt-tightening recession. He added $3.1 billion to his fortune making him worth $9.2 billion. (Forbes)

3 killed in shooting at Osaka bar, gunman kills himself
Osaka Jan 12, 2010 by AP

Three people were fatally shot by a man Tuesday evening at a bar in Habikino, Osaka Prefecture. The gunman then committed suicide, police said. The shooter was identified as Yasuhisa Sugiura, 49, an Osaka city government employee. The three people killed in the shooting at around 8 p.m. included Tatsuya Fukui, 23, a part-time employee at the bar, and Yoshiko Tanaka, 66, mother of Sugiura's wife, the police said. The other victim, Hiroto Uehara, 49, who was in critical condition, died later. Uehara owned the bar. (AP)

Transsexuals in marriage scam / Filipinos wed Japanese men by passing themselves off as women
Jan 13, 2010 by Yomiuri

Police have uncovered an illegal business brokering "marriage" between Japanese men and Filipino transsexual men staying illegally in Japan, it has been learned. According to an official of the Saitama prefectural police, to enable the transsexuals stay in Japan as the "wives" of the men, a broker arranged bogus marriages between the men and Filipino women and used the women's passports to register the marriage of the couples in Japan. (Yomiuri)

Club hostesses unionize to fight gray-area abuses
Jan 13, 2010 by Japan Times

Their sexy outfits and glossy makeup make it easy for "kyabajo" cabaret hostesses to entice flush male patrons into splurging fortunes on drinks. Their flashy lifestyle is the fodder for magazines looking to tickle teenagers' curiosity. Surveys show hostessing ranks in the top-10 jobs high school girls aspire to. But hostesses and their former ranks want young girls to realize there is no such thing as an easy meal ticket. (Japan Times)

Gov't to submit bill to Diet to give foreigners local suffrage
Tokyo Jan 12, 2010 by AP

Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama's Cabinet plans to submit a bill to the upcoming ordinary Diet session to give local suffrage to permanent foreign residents in Japan, ruling lawmakers said Tuesday. Strong reservations remain within his Democratic Party of Japan-led coalition government about the idea, however, despite Hatoyama's and other DPJ leaders' support for it. (AP)
By J.S. Jan 14, 2010



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