JIN-402 -- A Blank Slate in Hakone

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J@pan Inc Magazine Presents:
JAPAN INC NEWSLETTER
Commentary on Japan's culture, economy and society
Issue No. 402
Wednesday February 14, 2007 TOKYO

Join 29,642 subscribers of JIN for FREE:
http://www.japaninc.com/newsletters/free_sign_up

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Start a Company in Japan

Entrepreneur's Handbook Seminar 24th of Feb, 2007

If you have been considering setting up your own company,
find out what it takes to make it successful.
Terrie Lloyd, founder of over 13 start-up companies in Japan,
will be giving an English-language seminar and Q and A on
starting up a company in Japan.
This is an ideal opportunity to find out what is involved,
and to ask specific questions that are not normally answered
in business books.
All materials are in English and are Japan-focused.

For more details: http://japaninc.com/terrie_lloyd/
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--------------- ICA Event-Feb 15 --------------------------
Speakers: Eugene Saburi - Managing Executive Officer,
General Manager, Business and Marketing, Microsoft Corporation

Topic: Taking Business to a New Level

Details: Complete event details at http://www.icajapan.jp/
(RSVP Required)

Date: Thursday, Feb 15, 2007
Time: 6:30 Doors open, buffet dinner included
Cost: 3,000 yen (members), 5,500 yen (non-members),

Open to all - Location is Foreign Correspondents' Club
http://www.fccj.or.jp/static/aboutus/map.php

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*** So Fast Group Offers a Rare Glimpse into Japan's Logistics
and Telemarketing Business ***

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The So Fast Logistics Warehouse Tour

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Please visit http://www.japaninc.com/sofast for more details.

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CONTENTS:
@@ VIEWPOINT: A Blank Slate in Hakone

On a recent trip to Hakone we got off the bus at the graves
of the Soga brothers, Juro and Goro. Their father was
killed by one Ito Sukechika over an inheritance dispute.
Eighteen years later the brothers avenged their father
by killing Sukechika during a hunt near Mt. Fuji in 1193.
Juro was killed during the fight. Goro was captured and
brought before Shogun Minamoto no Yoritomo. The
shogun, moved by the brothers' filial piety, was inclined
to spare Goro. However, Sukechika's son demanded his
own revenge. Goro was executed.

Yoritomo was not the only one moved by the brothers'
tale. The story was later embellished for the Kabuki
theater and has become one of the Japanese favorite
'adauchi monogatari,' tales of revenge.

The wind whipped the foot of the mountain, brown
save for stands of evergreens. The graves, miniature
pagodas of stone, stood in a roadside clearing fringed by
sere pampas grass. Our fellow bus passengers probably
wondered why on earth we got off at such a desolate spot.

As we zipped up our parkas and donned gloves, we asked
ourselves the same question. The answer was that we
had come to bear witness to what was not but might
have been.

Ninety-one years earlier Rabindranath Tagore, the
Bengali poet awarded the Nobel prize in literature in 1913,
visited the Soga Brothers' graves. His guide was Sankei
Hara, a wealthy silk merchant and patron of the arts,
remembered for his creation of Sankeien, the magnificent
seaside garden in Yokohama.

Hara recounted for Tagore the tale of the Soga Brothers and
asked him to compose a poem for inscription on the
large rock beside the graves.

Tagore fell to the task. He composed a poem, but it was far
from what his host had expected. The poet could not
sympathize with the moral of the tale. In fact, he
interpreted it as a link in a mortal chain of revenge and
counter revenge. Convinced the poem would disappoint
Hara, Tagore read it with visible restraint:

'Each bore the other a grudge, each other they killed.
People sung their praises
But God was ashamed
Quickly He buried
Memory of the bloodletting
Beneath the green grass.'

As he listened to the Soga Brothers' tale, Tagore's eyes lit
up. Then with deep emotion he surveyed the luxuriant
summer grasses, as if thinking of the world beyond war
envisioned in the poem.

Sankei Hara respected Tagore's wish for peace, but could
not inscribe the poem on the rock. Truly the poem would
have been incongruous next to the Soga brothers' graves.

The present Japanese administration is determined to
amend war-renouncing Article 9 of the Constitution.
North Korea threatens, and China looms. Does the
ability to launch a preemptive strike offer security or
the chimera of security?

Pacifism is the realm of saint, philosopher, and poet.
A state that made pacifism a pillar of policy would not be
a state for long.

The bus arrived, we were glad for its warmth. These
thoughts crossed my mind as I looked through the
window at the face of the rock.

-- Burritt Sabin
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-- Entrepreneur Association of Tokyo - Tuesday, March 6th --

Speaker: Bruce Livingstone, Founder and CEO of iStockphoto
and Sean Mooney, Representative Director of Getty Images (Japan)

Presentation Title: 'Creating Opportunities for Crowdsourcing'

Don't miss this opportunity to hear from Canadian serial
entrepreneur, Bruce Livingstone, who last year sold his
company, iStockphoto to Getty Images for $50 million US.
Bruce will be joined by local advertising expert, author
and representative director of Getty Images (Japan),
Seam Mooney.

Date/Time: Tuesday, March 6, 7:00 pm
Location: City Club of Tokyo - Maple Room
(Canadian Embassy Complex)
Language: English
Website: http://www.ea-tokyo.com
Email: info@ea-tokyo.com
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** Japan vending machine market cracked open! *************

Japan is home to the highest density of vending machines
in the world, with about 5.6m machines, or one for every 23
people. You can buy almost anything, and the Japanese do,
with about JPY6.67trn (US$56bn) being spent every year.
Yet, apart from the obvious players such as major soft
drinks companies, there have been no foreign owners of this
massive direct sales medium - until now.

Market Pioneer Japan is proud to announce that as of
December, 2006, it has built a network of 1,500 vending
machines placed nationwide, selling stickers and print
logos. We invite owners of licensable content to contact
us with a view to distributing your IP assets into the
Japanese market.

Web: http://www.marketpioneerjapan.com
Email: info@marketpioneerjapan.com
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