I am back from my trip to Japan and my summer hiatus from blogging. Here are some pictures from my trip. Hundreds more on Flickr!
As part of Japan’s efforts to grapple with its massive public debt, the JET (Japan Exchange & Teaching) Program may be cut. Soon after coming into power, the new government launched a high profile effort to expose and cut wasteful spending. In May 2010, the JET Program and CLAIR came up for review, and during the course of an hourlong hearing, the 11-member panel criticized the JET scheme, ruling unanimously that a comprehensive examination should be undertaken to see if it should be pared back or eliminated altogether. The number of JET participants has already been cut back by almost 30 percent from the peak in 2002, but this is the most direct threat that the program has faced in its 23-year history.
We are asking JET Program participants past and present, as well as other friends of the program to speak out and petition the Japanese government to reconsider the cuts. Please sign this petition in support of the grassroots cultural exchange the JET Program has fostered and write directly to the Japanese government explaining the positive impact the Program has made in your life and that of your adopted Japanese community.
For more background on this issue, please refer to “JET Program on the Chopping Block” by Jim Gannon on jetwit.com.
June 26, 2010
Keynote speech by playwright and JET alum Randall David Cook
TranslationParty.com is a simple and amusing procrastination tool that demonstrates the hilarious quirkiness of machine translation. Enter an English phrase and TranslationParty will automatically translate it into Japanese, then back into English, then back into Japanese, etc. Until a Zen-like equilibrium is reached…
From Twitter via @myGengo.