Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Working for Rupert Murdoch???

Bancroft family accepts News deal: DJ executive
Tue Jul 31, 2007 10:44AM EDT
CHICAGO (Reuters) - Dow Jones & Co. Inc.'s controlling Bancroft family "has accepted" News Corp.'s $5 billion offer to buy the publisher of the Wall Street Journal, an executive of a Dow Jones unit said on Tuesday.
"The Bancroft family has accepted," John Prestbo, editor and executive director of Dow Jones Indexes, told reporters on Tuesday in Chicago. Dow Jones "will be part of News Corp," he said.
Prestbo told Reuters the information came from an internal company memo.

CNBC's Faber: News Corp. to Succeed In Buying Dow Jones
By CNBC.com | 31 Jul 2007 | 11:14 AM ET
Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. will succeed in its months-long effort to acquire Dow Jones, publisher of the Wall Street Journal, CNBC's David Faber reported.
A definitive agreement is expected as early as tonight, Faber said, citing people familiar with the situation.
The accord would end months of wrangling among the Bancroft family, which controls Dow Jones. Many members had opposed the $5 billion offer, which became public on May 1, fearing Murdoch would interfere with the Journal's editorial independence. But monetary issues appeared to have caused many family members to switch their votes.
"They suddenly realized that if they were to turn down this deal, they would also be on the hook for paying all those fees to their advisers," Faber said, including Merrill Lynch and the law firm of Wachtel Lipton. "It adds up to a big number. So they started to change their minds."
Family members decided that if they approved the deal, they could try to get Murdoch to cover the fees, Faber said. And that resulted in a large enough percentage of Bancrofts favoring the deal.
Still to be determined is how much of the legal and advisory fees News Corp. will cover in the transaction, Faber said.
"It did come awfully close, in fact, closer than many had anticipated," Faber said. "But at the end of the day, according to people who were working on this, a number of the Bancrofts who had been somewhat vocal in their opposition--Chris Bancroft for example--seemed suddenly at the realization that they were going to have to pay all these banking fees said 'Wait a second. Hey, if you pay my fees, I'll give you my vote.' And that may have turned it."
Meanwhile, a Dow Jones executive said the Bancroft family "has accepted" News Corp.'s $5 billion offer, Reuters reported.
"The Bancroft family has accepted," John Prestbo, editor and executive director of Dow Jones Indexes, told reporters on Tuesday in Chicago. Dow Jones "will be part of News Corp," he said.

$$$$$$$$$$$!!! Shit!!!



Monday, July 30, 2007

Pro-Wrestling God Dies at 82

Obits: Karl Gotch (Karl Istaz), “the God of pro-wrestling” at 82, Oda Makoto (小田実), a pacifist activist and novelist at 75

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Dow, How? A New Friend and DP Landslide Victory

The Bancroft family is still divided between for and against the Murdoch offer.

I met Miss A this afternoon for lunch. She paid for me. I’d never met her before but she definitely tried to help me find a position even by introducing me one of her friends, a head hunter. After all, I found the DJ position on my own, but to me it was something so important to see her and say thanks and also best wishes to her because she’s too started a new job recently.

A landslide win for the Democratic Party. I believe that this result will only stymie the necessary reforms. Certainly, there are bright young members in the DP, who can talk about policies, not politics, but its structure is not stable, consisting of people from former Socialists to extreme right wingers. Is the DP better than the LDP plus Komeito? It is a hard question to answer… I sincerely expect those smart young DP members to mix with their LDP counterparts, if necessary, to form a new party.


Upper House Election Day









Saturday, July 28, 2007

Got New Green Card

I visited JD again and got all important green (EP) card. On Wednesday next week, all starts. Coming down to the ground, I found Miss N of my former employer standing at the other side of the elevator door. We updated each other and incidentally it was her last day of work…

So much for (mediocre) dinner as to cause a stomach pain…

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Dreams about "Buford" Again


けさの夢には、またドン・ビュフォード(Don Buford)が登場した。白地に青で「LIONS」と胸に書かれた太平洋クラブのユニフォーム。ヘルメットは青、つばが赤のパターンで、彼は左側(向かって右)を少し下にして「斜に」かぶっていた。ピッチャーが右投げのようで彼は左打席に立っていた。球場は福岡平和台。自分がスコアボードをてっぺんから下へと滑り降りると手書き部分の文字が消されてしまった。あらまっ!球場には観客席がなく、ここは砂浜。試合途中なのか、終了後なのかわからないが、ビュフォードが「SI」とオレンジ色で刺繍された黒の帽子を持って現れた。(サンフランシスコの帽子とよく似た感じ。)自分には全く振り向いてくれないのが悲しい。




This afternoon, I went to JD just to pass my passport and the immigration white card to an HR person. Tomorrow, she, or somebody else, will go to MOM to get the passport to be stamped. I will visit her again, after a call from her, to have my chopped passport back.



“Woodstein” has learned that Bob Haldeman, Chief of Staff of President Nixon, is the core of the GOP slush fund. And the Watergate break-in is just part of a nationwide “intelligence gathering” by the Nixon (“Dickie’s such an asshole”) camp. But they made a serious mistake by reporting that Huge Sloan had testified about Haldeman to the grand jury.

And Democratic Senator Sam J. Ervin of North Carolina, prepares an investigative committee.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

How Many Want to Play under Nomura san?




Monday, July 23, 2007

Doubt Your Policy Makers' Memory Span, a Case for Iran

The Iranians remind the world that their soldiers were victims of Saddam’s poison-gas attacks during the Iran-Iraq war, and that they never retaliated in kind. Ayatollah Khamenei, the supreme leader, has gone so far as to issue a fatwa (religious decree) declaring the possession or of use of WMD in general, and nuclear weapons in particular, to be illegal under Islamic law.
Furthermore, Iran’s leaders point out that unlike existing nuclear-weapons states in their neighbourhood, such as Pakistan, India and Israel, Iran has signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT)….

… Iran does after all have a history of being bullied and invaded. In the 19th century Britain and Russia played their “great game” on its territory. Britain and America engineered the coup that unseated an elected prime minister, Muhammad Mossadegh, in 1953. After Iraq’s invasion in 1980 the United Nations did precious little to help Iran. And in 2002 Iran found itself listed as part of George Bush’s “axis of evil”, at a time when America had just sent one army into neighbouring Afghanistan and prepared to send another into neighbouring Iraq….

Knowing that Israel already possesses a very large nuclear arsenal, Iran would have to be ready to sacrifice millions of its own people to destroy the Jewish state, unless it was sure that in a first strike it could destroy Israel’s ability to strike back. That would be hard, given that Israel is reported to have put nuclear weapons at sea on submarines, and has built sophisticated anti-missile defences expressly to protect its second-strike power….

Iran took an American embassy hostage. It may have had a hand in the bombing of the American marine barracks in Lebanon in 1983 and it stands accused now of helping to kill American soldiers in Iraq. It is not surprising that many Americans consider Iran a bitter foe.
Nor is it surprising that Iranians return the favor. America organised the coup against Mossadegh, supported the shah, helped Saddam in the Iran-Iraq war, invaded two of Iran’s neighbours and imposes sanctions on Iran…. (The Economist, July 21)

Aiyah… Can’t Sleep

Aiyah… Can’t sleep. Given up trying. Now having a coffee. Will have siesta after the world started work.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Disappointing Japanese Politicians

(2007年7月17日23時10分 読売新聞)


7月21日8時1分配信 産経新聞

逆に、小沢さんは、まだ自民党にいた頃に出版した「日本改造計画」で、グランドキャニオンの危険を例に、米国式の「自己責任」を強調して“libertarian” を印象付けたのに、今や「民主リベラル」の民主党党首。


Thursday, July 19, 2007

Shoe Thief!!!! and Time to Decide for the Bancrofts

Last night, I found my “Timberland” pair was also gone! Thief!!!!

I finished “Woodward and Bernstein: Life in the Shadow of Watergate” and immediately started (what else?) “All the President’s Men.” In the page of acknowledgements, the name of Taylor Branch appears.

For Shepard, it was very lucky for the identity of “Deep Throat” to have been disclosed by the time the book was published.

From the WSJ: Tuesday's late-night decision by the board of Dow Jones & Co. to endorse News Corp.'s $5 billion offer for the publisher sets the stage for a dramatic meeting of the company's controlling shareholder, the Bancroft family, to consider the future of the company it has controlled for more than a century.
The Bancrofts, who have a 64% voting stake in Dow Jones, plan to meet Monday in Boston to hear a presentation about News Corp.'s offer. The family will then have about a week to make a decision, a time frame requested by News Corp., which wants to hear "promptly" whether enough Bancroft family members are willing to back the deal, Dow Jones said in a statement late Tuesday. Dow Jones owns The Wall Street Journal, Barron's and Dow Jones Newswires.

Miyamoto Kenji (宮本顕治), a long-time leader of the Communist Party, has died at 98.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Is Balkan Part of Europe?

… Partisans of [Serbian] President Boris Tadic argue (privately) that joining the EU is more important than keeping Kosovo, whereas supporters of Mr [Vojislav] Kostunica [, the prime minister,] say (publicly) that keeping Kosovo is more important than joining Europe. (The Economist, July 14th)



“Woodward and Bernstein” mentions a TIME cover story that Carl Bernstein wrote in 1992 about Pope John Paul II and Ronald Reagan’s cooperation for bringing down the Polish communist government. I read the piece then and perhaps the TIME issue is still here with me. And Bob Woodward’s book of 1987, “Veil,” digs deep into the secret world of the CIA under William Casey, a central figure of the Iran Contra scandal. It was the big news story day after day when I first went to the States, with the congressional testimony by US Marine Lieutenant-Colonel Oliver North.

Monday, July 16, 2007

The Orient Express Moves on

The Orient Express moved on, leaving Coral behind in Subotica. A communist revolutionary, Dr. Czinner, is dead, and Coral seems to have got caught by the journalist, Mabel Warren, who pursued the doctor. Honestly, I anticipated more happenings. One underlying theme is of course prejudice against Jews, especially moneyed ones like Myatt. But yes, the train moves on.

Just yesterday, I wrote about my okay sleep and then last night to this morning, I couldn’t sleep at all. Or maybe I was but the feeling is that I was awake the whole night with my eyes closely shut. I had a three-hour nap from 1:00 pm and feel fine.

Certainly, I’d like to start working at DJ soon. Otherwise, it would be an anticlimax. It was the autumn of my 3rd year at university that I cited the names of two Japanese news agencies. “‘Kyodo’ and ‘Jiji’” as hoped-for employers to a questionnaire sheet provided by the Employment Division (就職課), knowing there was no chance to make it reality. Then I was already reading a U.S. news weekly though I didn’t even have a passport.

After Kalamazoo, after Albany, after Osaka, and Taiwan and Korea… I simply kept reading because I wanted part of news, yes part of history. I’m still continuing here in Singapore. There is no denying at all that this DJ job is a rewarding result of all those years, after all those jobs and companies, some of which were fraudulent and/or humiliating. Even the word “impossible” say “I’m possible.” It must be this way.

"Tsukikage Hyogo" and "Hanayama Daikichi"





Bob Woodward Stays with the Washington Post

Meanwhile, Bob Woodward stays with the Washington Post and, in May 1979, becomes assistant managing editor for metro news. Then he is tripped by a totally fabricated, and Pulitzer winning, story about an eight-year-old heroin addict, “Jimmy’s World” by a new Post reporter, Janet Cooke.

It was just the kind of “Holy Shit!” story that Woodward was known to love… (p. 193)
It was just the kind of “Holy Shit!” story that Woodward loved. (p. 196)

Did the author, Alicia Shepard, copy and paste the phrase? This is the second instance of repeating two almost identical sentences so far in the book. (I forgot in what pages I found the first one…)

I noticed today that my pair of white Adidas with green lines disappeared… Stolen or thrown away?

Sleep trouble again. This time, the problem is that I wake up only after a few hours… But I called home and that means my mood is okay.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Carl Bernstein Leaves the Washington Post

This disorganized man, Carl Bernstein, left the Washington Post in January 1977. While he tried to be back to the Post, he was offered the position of the Washington bureau chief of ABC. This move to the TV journalism, which he knows nothing about, turns out to be disastrous and his marriage to Nora Ephron is disintegrating.

Dr. Czinner is Dead

At Subotica, a large Serbian city, the communist revolutionary Dr. Czinner, Coral Musker and Josef Grünlich get caught by the police. Grünlich, who knows something about escaping, tries to open the locked door and succeeds. However, it was only this man who managed to get to the taxi by which Myatt came from Belgrade to find Musker. Musker and Czinner hide themselves in a shed, and she finds the doctor dead the following morning. Myatt, having failed to find the dancer, goes on to Constantinople.

Friday, July 13, 2007

More about Watergate

I got “The Final Days” (Bob Woodward/Carl Bernstein) tonight. Reading only “Woodward and Bernstein: Life in the Shadow of Watergate” is pathetically incomplete. The two monumental books, “All the President’s Men” and “The Final Days” and the movie (Redford/Hoffman), which originally inspired “Woodward and Bernstein,” must have come first. Let me read more then.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Lady Bird Has Died at 94

Obits: Lady Bird Johnson at 94, Nishiyama Sen (西山千) at 95


「指揮マネ病」 階下から注意

以上のように感じましたから、あなたのこの楽しみ方はやめるべきではない、というのが、私の基本的考えです。それでどうするか?思いつき程度の アイデアかもしれませんが、1階に引っ越せば問題がなくなるんじゃないかと思いました。特に階下は、あなたのせいかどうかは別にして、よく引っ越されるとのこと。それなら今の人が引っ越したあとに入るとか。


Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Nice Sleep

For the past week or so, I’ve never had any problem for falling asleep when I want to at night. Without any help from Epilim. A big improvement. $$ worries eased. That’s probably a big reason. But then, my credit card use must be closely monitored.

Two days ago, in a dream, two of the “elevator girls” working at Kyoto Hankyu 20 years ago appeared in their red uniform and offered me a birthday cake. Those days I spent as an “elevator boy” are one of the recurrent themes in my dreams.

ノロノロと進む(「オリエント・エクスプレス」ではなく、読書速度のこと)“Stamboul Train” の話の中心はユーゴの共産主義者(Dr. Czinner)。「白い都のヤスミンカ」と思いを重ねざるを得ない。イギリス人の踊り子(Coral Musker)と一人を射殺した後、この共産主義者を追うジャーナリスト(Mabel Warren)から金を盗んで列車に乗り込んだオーストリア人の男(Josef Grünlich)が絡む。

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

EP Approved

My employment pass application has been approved. JD called me yesterday. Two weeks, quite fast and I’m pleased. However, there are still a few weeks before I start working there. The reason of waiting is not clear. The employment contract says that the starting date is August 1 and before I signed it, I pointed out that it shouldn’t take so long for the pass application to be approved (or rejected). And it was agreed then we would have another talk if it has been approved way before that date. And also F was a joint venture of JD and R until the end of last year and the systems are still being integrated. As the e-mail from the boss today tells me it would take some time to get the stuff ready for me, a new employee. Okay lah. Whatever the reason, I’m certainly glad to learn the application has been approved. Relieved, I have free time for another few weeks.

Since yesterday, the “alt” has been dead again.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Alcoholic Prince




Saturday, July 07, 2007

Mari's "Time Travel" and the World



第三篇として収められている「白い都のヤスミンカ」で、マリさんは、級友ヤスミンカ(ヤースナ)を探して内戦が広がるユーゴスラビアの首都ベオグラードを訪れる。ヤースナの生存を確認したものの、彼女が戦火の激しいサラエボに移住したと聞いて、「……目の前が霞んだ。思い出帳のヤースナの絵からヤースナの一家と過ごした団らんの風景が立ち上がって来る。一家は無事なのか。どうか無事でいて」。ここから最後のページまで、一気に読み進んだ。“The Human Factor” でMaurice Castleが亡命していくシーンを読んだ時とそっくりの気分だった。



Yesterday, I met two women whom I hadn’t seen for so long. One by appointment and the other accidentally.

M invited me for lunch. We’ve known each other for about six years. Back then, I probably didn’t have any Jap friend. So it can be said she is the first friend I made in Singapore. We kept in touch just by a few message exchanges a year. Some time ago when I was still desperate and seriously thinking about going back to Japan, she messaged me, out of the blue as always. We found we live very close to each other, in the same neighborhood. Moreover, she is currently working in the building where DJ is located. What a surprise.

And J. I didn’t recognize her at first when she said, “Hisashiburi.” She looked very young (because she is) and with no makeup, she looked what she really is, a student. We had a long talk over drinks. She told me that she had quit her part-time job (good!) because she didn’t like to “cheat” customers. She even asked for my counsel about her future plans… work, marriage, etc. Marriage to a Jap man. No matter how nice the man himself may be, she knows how some Jap guys behave…

Friday, July 06, 2007

Mari Finds Old Friends and Much More







Go Go Go! Read More!!

Another sigh of relief… I’ve finished the first few batches of work. Expecting the money, I bought “All the President’s Men” (30th anniversary edition, Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward) and 「嘘つきアーニャの真っ赤な真実」(米原万里).

“All the President’s Men” is, quite needless to say, a must-read for anyone involved in journalism, though I guess very few Singaporean journalists have read this monumental book. I simply can’t read Alicia C. Shepard’s “Woodward and Bernstein: Life in the Shadow of Watergate” without this bible. And 「嘘つきアーニャの真っ赤な真実」is about her journey to find her old friends at the Prague Soviet School after some 30 years.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Hard Work and It's Almost "Nobody but Rupert"

Trying to finish the work as quickly as I can by working like hell. This morning, I started before 8:30 am and continued until 7:30 pm.

It may be inevitable that one needs to look at others to discover and rediscover his own identity. Identity as someone’s son, as a man, simply as a person. It is my ideal to learn my identity time and again by placing myself in an international environment because, in such a situation, I should be able to have more people of a variety of background, therefore finding my identity more vividly than in mono-ethnic environments. And this my ideal is finally to be realized.

From the Wall Street Journal: The agreement on editorial independence that Dow Jones & Co. and prospective acquirer News Corp. hammered out last week after laborious negotiations was designed to preserve a measure of journalistic autonomy for The Wall Street Journal and other Dow Jones publications by shielding top editors from corporate meddling.

But the document's power relies less on specific language than on how those editors -- and the new owner -- exercise influence. The agreement isn't as detailed as, say, a rule book for a sports event: Much of the wording is vague, leaving operations to mutual agreement between the two parties. And the ability to enforce the agreement legally is less crucial than the ability of reporters and editors to win attention for their grievances.

One key issue about editorial independence is that News Corp. is a giant media and entertainment company. Most newspapers don't need to write much about the business interests of their smallish parents, but Mr. Murdoch has his hand in everything from global politics to making movies and TV shows.

As part of the agreement, News Corp. has promised to adopt a set of journalistic principles that are virtually identical to those in Dow Jones's Code of Conduct. The principles say that in all of News Corp.'s publications, "analyses represent the publication's best independent judgment rather than their preferences or those of their owner, sources, advertisers or information providers." The principles also adopt the Journal's editorial page mantra -- free people and free markets -- at all of News Corp.'s publications. "The result of this deal might not be to corrupt The Wall Street Journal," quips Daniel Okrent, a former top editor at Time Inc. who became the first ombudsman of the New York Times. "It could be that it reforms all the News Corp. publications."

Money Can Destroy Friendship

Today, I got a translation work of a substantial volume. As I expect to get it done within a few days, my finance may greatly improve, depending on when I get paid. I should be forgiven to sigh in a big way.

Money can destroy friendship. Borrowing from friends is the last thing one should do. Saying thanks for the money borrowed is not enough. It's not your money. I’d like to clean the plate slowly but steadily.

“Dried yeast” tablets seem working.