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Comment Re:envy (Score 5, Informative) 375

Have you tried to settle permanently in Japan and get the citizenship? It is almost impossible unless you have Japanese roots

As a matter of fact yes I have and I did it. And I have zero Japanese roots (I am a white born-in-America lived there for 20 years former U.S. citizen native English speaker).
Six requirements (simplifying for the sake of the comment; there are exceptions to the below where it's in fact looser/easier than the below) to be Japanese:

1. Be an adult (defined as 20 years or older)
2. Don't be likely to become a welfare case (have a modest, stable source of income w/ an education & Japanese language level high enough that it allows you can to get/keep a job that will allow you to eat and put a roof over your head). You do not need to be rich or even well off or perfectly fluent.
3. Don't have a criminal record, overseas or domestically, and have no immigration problems (overstaying, etc)
4. Don't have any ties to organized crime or terrorism (domestic or overseas)
5. Live in Japan for five years continuously (not on-and-off) and legally (no immigration blemishes)
6. Legally get rid of your other nationalities (if the other country/countries will allow it)... either before (if country will allow it) or after within two years.

It took about five months for me to gather the paperwork and four months for them to approve me. And it is free. Permanent Residency is not a prerequisite, nor is Japanese "roots" (you can be single with no connection).

Comment Re:envy (Score 2) 375

(for the sake of a comment, I'm grossly simplifying here. The immigration rules of both countries are extraordinarily complicated and there are many special exceptions to the below summaries, but this is a high level gist)

So there are no racial barriers or quotas or racial purity policies within Japan's immigration system. The primary difference between the U.S. and Japan's immigration system is that the U.S. immigration policy allows for two primary paths to legally immigrate:

1. By high skilled work: getting a job that is not considered manual/low-skill labor.
2. By "family reunion": having a family member (brother, sister, mother, father etc) already in the country.

Japan only has one path:

1. By high skilled work. How this is defined is complicated, but in a nutshell it's anything that requires a formal education above high school level. (again, lots of exceptions... too many to get into here)

In America, over 66% of immigration comes from path #2. In Japan, once you're in the country, you can bring your immediate family (your spouse and your direct children), but you can't bring your mother, father, brother, sister, etc. If they want to come, they need to qualify via path #1.

Because Japan is surrounded by seas and oceans with no land border neighbors, it is geographically very difficult for potential immigrants to enter illegally, and makes travel (airfare) expensive compared to land/car crossings. That also keeps the whole immigrant (legal & illegal) population low. Also, the language of the land is Japanese... so in order to qualify for Path #1 (high skilled labor), you usually have to speak/read/write it for >95% of most white collar jobs. This is a higher barrier than other countries, where the availability of high-skilled jobs in "popular" languages (like English) is more plentiful.

Anyway, the reason American's usually call Japan "anti-immigrant" or "restrictive" is because Japan lacks an easier "path #2" as part of their formal immigration policy, not because of race/ethnicity exclusion/quota policies... which is how the bulk of most legal immigration in the U.S. occurs.

Comment Brian Chen misquoted jp sources & silently edi (Score 1) 884

Both Japanese sources quoted in the article were misrepresented.



for their rebuttals of Brian Chen's Wired blog entry.

Nobi owns and uses an iPhone. I've seen him use it in person. The reason he was using a DoCoMo P905 in June 2008 is because the iPhone wasn't sold in Japan until July 2008.

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