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View Diary: Fukushima: Stage Two (232 comments)

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  •  Yeah. The censorship (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mofembot, Russgirl, Hatrax

    is pretty draconian everywhere else, too. That's why when the Japanese government started telling fractured 'truths' in late April/early June and suddenly everybody knew they'd been lying their asses off from the beginning, our federal agencies and those of all other nuclear nations and IAEA got caught with their pants down supporting the Japanese coverup. Oops.

    NHK is the main media outlet in Japan, they were covering up from Day-1. But I was surprised by Mainichi, which had been much more reliable. But when I went there to try and find the original article to link per the August GSDF evac drills, it flat wasn't there. Yet Google returned thousands of references to it and citations from it, including the one in the diary. I've no reason at all to believe Mainichi didn't report on it, I saw their video on it! Just wow.

    The evacuation drills weren't reported in our MSM at all that I can remember.

    •  Media Censorship is another truth (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joieau, Russgirl

      of life in Japan that I got absolutely savaged on during the whaling debates.  I said then that the Japanese media is heavily censored, and got yelled at that Japan is higher on the press freedom index than the USA, along with all of the usual "Japan is enlightened because I'm a Japanophile and I say it is, so there!" BS.
      The truth is that you can have a high degree of press freedom and still censor.  How?  Well, first there's the fact that NHK, as Joieau said, is government-owned.  The newspapers are private, but they all have government connections.  It's been famously stated that in Japan, no one ever says "no".  What this means is that no one wants to go against the grain or rock the boat, and so what you say is modified according to the wishes of the audience as they are perceived.  In short, the papers don't want to embarrass the government, who are in their "circle", so they self-censor everything and launder it before publishing.  No one has to lean on them; they lean on themselves, but the result is the same.

      The same goes for ISPs.  During the Toyota scandal my wife was doing research on how various media were covering it, and she found that websites carrying articles not flattering to Toyota were constantly blocked, links disappearing within minutes of being posted, etc.  There was even a case where she linked to a CNN cover story and went back to find herself re-routed to a replica CNN site with an article praising Toyota (I'm still mad that she didn't get a screen capture of that one).  

      As an aside, just so everyone knows, the official media here in Japan says that the Toyota scandal was dreamed up by the US automakers in collusion with the Big 3 in order to destroy Toyota's market abroad, and that most of the incidents occurred because Americans are bad drivers.  I just want everyone to think about that the next time they consider buying a Toyota.

      The media are actively colluding with the government on the Fukushima issue, too.  I mentioned elsewhere the PSAs urging people to buy Fukushima produce in order to help them out.  Not to mention the almost complete lack of useful data getting to the people.  

      •  Unfortunately, that kind (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Russgirl

        of heavy-handed censorship is very much present in the US these days. Both UK's Guardian and Al Jazeera are providing better coverage of Fukushima and OWS than any American outfit. I swear, more than a few informative articles have disappeared right before my eyes in between page refreshments!

        There are several groups working in Japan with the Japanese people to obtain good measurements of contamination (meters and access to body scanners were most difficult, some NGOs raised money for that) and set up long-term health monitoring and a database of evacuees who are now in far flung regions of Japan and may never come 'home'. They have to tread rather lightly in order to be allowed to stay and do their work, but the work they're doing is better than anything coming from TEPCO/NISA and the PM's office.

        My main beef is that citizens in badly contaminated areas - who get no help from anybody to relocate for the duration, as they ALL need to do - jumped the gun on decontamination/remediation efforts. It ain't over yet, all they can do is spread it around and increase unnecessary doses to themselves and their children. The rest of the world needs to get together and insist that Japan evacuate out to 50 miles, 85-100 along the plume paths. Help pay for it, Japan is barely recovering from the earthquake/tsunami and unwilling to extend evacuations to where they need to be.

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