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Election views

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The election may be over, but this survey from @nifty took a look at views regarding this election and elections in general.

Sound trucks here are usually actually cars or just light trucks that drive around both town centres and residential areas blasting out usually nothing more than the candidate’s name and maybe their age; apparently election law forbids broadcasting about policies from a moving vehicle during the 10 days of official campaigning; doing it from a stationary truck or standing on a street corner is fine, however. As useless as it sounds, all parties do it, giving people little peace during the campaign.

By the way, note that percentages with one decimal place are exact values, but with no decimal places are estimates read off graphs.

Here’s a typical sound truck – the extra hands are waving at passers-by, the “29” on the front is the age of the candidate; for younger candidates the typical poster has the age in a bigger font than the party name.

megaphone madness
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Almost one in four bought tickets for this summer’s national lottery

Katte2Q took a look at Japan’s tax on the stupid, takarakuji, Japan’s national lottery.

Note that Japan’s lottery differs from many around the world, in that it is a raffle (that is, numbered tickets) with fixed-value prizes rather than the more common pattern of picking six numbers from 1 to 50 to win a share of a pot. Actually, that other kind is also offered by the same organisation, but it is the four or so times per year big raffle that is the format that people think of when they hear mention of the lottery.

The national lottery annoys me greatly, in particular the advertising. The main lottery features many big names in story-driven adverts that must run up a significant production and salary budget to produce, and last year their scratch cards featured a kid’s cartoon character, and the year before was based around being addicted to one more scratch…

Here’s an advert from more innocent times:


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Retirement in Japan

It’s something we’ll all (hopefully, although Trump seems to be trying his hardest to save us from that worry…) have to face, retirement, the subject of this survey from @nifty.

I just recently started our company pension scheme, and I’ve managed to reconnect myself with one of my UK private pensions, and after a visit to a financial adviser last month, she informed us we had enough to survive, although enjoying might be a different matter… Most Japanese companies still have a hard retirement age of sixty, and some (like my employer) with schemes to reemploy people on rolling yearly contracts at no doubt reduced wages.

I skipped translating question seven, as it was a list of famous people who are growing old ideally; top for men was Tokoro George then Tamori, and for women it was Sayuri Yoshinaga followed by Tamori. However, my ideal, who features nowhere in either the male or female top ten, would be Beat Takeshi. I’d love to be as talented to basically not give a care about anything or, as is more probably true, to be able to appear to not give a damn.

Here’s some random Japanese people enjoying their retirement:

Energetic Seniors
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Majority of Japanese kids have dinner without father

The free infant care magazine miku recently published a survey titled preventing second-hand smoke, although most of the survey was actually about mealtimes.

This summer I’d be in the “other” category for breakfast. I’m usually toast in winter, cereal in summer, but this year I’m on energy bars.

Here’s a typical traditional Japanese breakfast, although this typical of what is served at traditional inns; I don’t know how many of the 40% who eat rice-centric breakfasts actually eat something as grand as this:

手作りの豆腐や, 天日干しの網代干物, 定番の温泉卵, 朝食, リーズナブル 舟盛プラン, 磯の宿 まきた, 磯の宿, 熱海温泉, 熱海, 日本, Breakfast, Atami, Japan
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Women more keen than men on men-only carriages

Macromill Research recently published a short survey on a number of aspects of train commuting, from how people spend their time to anti-groping insurance.

Recently anti-groping insurance has been in the news; along with, of course, genuine cases, there have been some cases of either women falsely accusing men for extortion, or just in a packed train a woman misunderstanding getting bumped by a briefcase or being brushed by a stray hand. When I ride in a packed train I always keep at least one hand on the hanging straps, and if space, one hand on my smartphone, or holding onto my bag strap around the shoulder area, just in case.

Here’s a typical situation on many lines around Japan, at the morning and evening rushes one carriage is reserved for women only:

Women only train sign in Nagoya
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What Japanese think of Japan

Do you like or hate Japan? graph of japanese statisticsMacromill Research recently conducted a survey looking at Japan’s image.

The old chestnut of the four seasons appears at number two of the favourite things about Japan; at a superficial level it seems such a silly thing as many other countries have four distinct seasons, but Japan marks them much more clearly than certainly the UK. We maybe have summer holidays, autumn Halloween, winter Christmas and New Year, and spring Easter, but in Japan both equinoxes are public holidays, each season has their specific foods, everyone goes to view cherry blossoms and autumn leaves, return home for the New Year, and visit family graves over summer, and the television dutifully reports… Hmm, I’m not explaining this very well, so I’ll quit now! Anyway, here’s Japan’s four seasons in one image:

Four seasons in Japan
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Few Japanese children learning dance, street most popular

From 2012 dance became a compulsory part of the curriculum in Japanese schools, so Yamaha Music Japan decided to conduct a survey into awareness of dance to see how dance was fitting in to a child’s education.

Demographics

Between the 30th of September and 1st of October 2015 1,000 parents, 50:50 male and female, aged between 25 and 60 years old and with a child in primary school (aged between 6 and 12) completed an internet-based survey. How the sample was chosen is not noted.

Back when I was in primary school, we had a few lessons in traditional Scottish Country dance that stood me in good stead for céilidhs later on in life; nothing serious, just the steps for the Gay Gordons and the like. Now I think of it, Japanese traditional dances don’t feature in the answers – are they already taught elsewhere in the curriculum?

Here’s a kiddy version of my favourite dance troupe, World Order:


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Electronic cash most popular way of paying for trains

How do you most often pay for train rides? graph of japanese statisticsiBridge Research Plus took a look at trains.

Demographics

Between the 9th and 14th of September 2015 600 members of the Research Plus monitor group who used trains to commute to work or school completed a private internet-based questionnaire. The sample was exactly 50:50 male and female, 13.3% in their twenties, 29.0% in their thirties, 24.3% in their forties, 27.5% in their fifties, and 5.8% in their sixties.

In Q1 I’m surprised to see mobile phones almost non-existent in the results, but I think one reason is that most season tickets these days are IC card-based, residing on either a credit card or (as in my case) on a mobile phone.

In Q9 I had most of these experiences, but probably the worst for me is drooling while sleeping…
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Majority of Japanese children recognise the necessity of foreign languages

Do you want to go on an overseas holiday? graph of japanese statisticsThe social learning company Surala recently conducted a survey into school children’s opinions of overseas.

Demographics

Between the 1st and 20th of August 2015 480 children who used the Surala social learning service completed a survey offered after they logged into the Surala service. The sample was 55.6% male, 15.8% in primary school, 74.8% in middle school, and 9.4% in senior school.

Note that although the Surala service appears to be free to use, the sample is not going to be that representative of Japanese children overall, so care should be taken reading the results, especially, I think, the desire to learn and recognition of the necessity of foreign languages.
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How Japanese view herbal medicine

Have you ever been to a Chinese Medicine doctor? graph of japanese statisticsThe web site Kampodesk, a Chinese (herbal) medicine (called “kampo” in Japan) information site, conducted a survey into the image of Chinese medicine.

Demographics

Between the 23rd and 26th of January 2015 853 users of the web site Kampo Desk completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 3% of the sample were 19 or under, 37% aged between 20 and 34 years old, 48% between 35 and 49 years old, 10% between 50 and 64 years old, and 1% aged 65 years old or more.

Given the site doing the survey, there is most likely going to be a bias towards favouring Chinese medicine, and of course the questions will be chosen to give a favourable image of Chinese medicine.

For me, I think it is mostly quackery, and some of the stuff which might have science behind it would be better served by real medicine with exact dose measures, not imprecise “natural” cures. I’ve been prescribed some foul-tasting powder once or twice, but I couldn’t help noticing a real pill mixed in that perhaps supported the placebo effect.
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