4/14/2018

Brahms Piano Quartet Nr.3

This is an excellent performance of this piece. Very accurate in ensemble and full of songs in performance. Each performer is really artistic with amazing capability.
It is surprising that an instant ensemble like this group could perform in this way.

The 1st movement is expressing tragedy in adolescence. Urgence and energy is in the 2nd movement. Delicate song of love is the 3rd movement. I would emphasize the 4th movement showing how unique music of Brahms is as in the case of his Nr4 symphony. Struggle in lonesomeness and meaninglessness of life is expressed in this movement in my view. This music may express every aspect of life from young days to elderly.


I used to play the last movement in med school days. A lecture room equipped with an old upright piano. It was sometime in fall. The setting sun was shining through the window facing to the west. Quiet except for our performance. We have played the last movement, even though we have never known what it had meant in our lives yet. The friends of mine, playing this piece with me, might have lived their lives and must be standing at the almost last chapter of their lives now. For now, they might understand first or even deeper what the music has meant. 

4/13/2018

Potatoes and apples are budding

Potatoes are finally budding. I was almost uttering some words when I found this coming out in the soil.


We have planted a couple of apple trees in the garden 3 or 4 years ago. They have bloomed for the first time this year. We have looked forward to their flowers. They may bear first fruits very soon.


It was in my forties when I was first moved by plants growing or betting born. Lives are miraculous even if we know of that process as a knowledge. Older we get, more pleasure we have seeing them vivid and alive. 

I am going to plant various kinds of vegetables. It is for the harvests themselves and for the pleasure to watch lives growing.  

We will have the 7th anniversary of my mother's passing very soon. My brother and his wife will visit and have some time together with us here. Time is still flying away so fast. I would treasure every moment with family members together.

3/26/2018

Reinvestingating the cause and consequence of the nuclear power plant accident in Fukushima

A discussion in the internet urged me to investigate on the cause and consequence of the severe nuclear accident in Fukushima again. The government and the mass media have turned to approve restarting the nuclear power plants as time has passed since that accident. Restarting nuclear power plants would yield much profit to the power line companies as well as those related with it.

I still found the cause on the accident regarding hardware as well as software is not elucidated yet. The power line company and those who get profit with restarting them are inclined to stress how important restarting is. There are increasing number of people who support those views. For the last 7 years since the accident, they have been able only to visualize a part of the destroyed innder structure of the pressure vessels. Far from taking away the melt down debris etc and consequent decommisioning of the reactors. The contaminated water is still increasing in quatity since they failed to restrice influx of underground water into the area of the nuclear power plant. 

It has not been determined if the accident occurred only by Tsunami or by earthquake itself. The records of the water level/pressure level in the pressure vessels rather support the view that the nuclear power plants, especially their tubings, have been destroyed by the earthquake itself. There is a serious question on the quake proof quality ot those reactors. Without knowing how it has occurred, it might be difficult for them to set measures against such natural disaster.

It is also believed the staff at the nuclear power plants could not follow the manuals for accidents. The company had provided 3 versions of manuals to deal with different levels of accidents. The staff, who might be upset at that disaster, could not follow the indications of the manuals which could have lessened the damage or, at least, could have slow down the process of melt down. The top of the nuclear power plant was an engineer of maintenance of the plants, who was not an expert for such accidents. Actually, there have been less training or education for such severe accidents than necessary. 

The accident is told to have killed hundreds of the people in the area, even though their deaths are not directly related with the irradiation etc. Tens of thousands of people have still evacuated from their home land due to radiation contamination. Most of them should lose their home land forever.

The accident in Fukushima has not left so much damage as expected from the quantity of the radioactive matter released. It was fortunate that they could stop running the plants at the earthquake despite of the following LOCA. The wind has brought most of the contaminating materials over to the Pacific Ocean. In the next accident, which we have known unfortunately that it could occur at a definite probability, the damage could be much worse. There are 14 nuclear plants in a limited area norht of Kyoto, which could be collapsed in a row and could devastate the Western Japan. 

I wonder if we won't learn anything from the accident in Fukushima.

3/11/2018

Seven years have passed.

It has been 7 years since the big earthquake in eastern Japan occurred today. I was seeing an ophthalmologist who gave me a diagnosis of cataracts when the earthquake occurred and was rushing back to my office after that. At this time on the day, I was struck dumb at the mess in my room of the office. Everything has fallen on the floor. My precious cello has survived despite of television set was fallen on the floor very close to it.

I have been apathic for a few days. In a couple of days, when I came back on the internet, I was surprised with gratitude to find dozens of e mails from all over the world asking how I was doing were in the mail box. Jim N3JT used to give me a phone call directly. Dave W0FBI, who used to do his military service for 4 years as a doctor in Japan, told me he would return to Japan and work for those suffering from the irradiation due to the nuclear power plant accident. How much I have thanked to all of them! Whenever I remember of those people showing their good will to us, I could not help crying. It was a real disaster but was still a chance to convince me there were good people in the world.  I thought I should change a bit of my way of living after that. I am not sure if I could come on that way. However, I still recall of what I thought that time whenever this anniversary comes on.

There was a charity concert of NY PHilharmonic conducted by Alan Gilbert held in the NYC for Japanese suffers in only 7 days after the disaster. He has expressed supports to us on behalf of the orchestra members. It was Takemitsu's Requiem they performed. I have introduced on the episode and their performance as here.

There are still about 34k people evacuated from Fukushima. Many people are still with the sad memories losing their families. I should not forget them.


What recent forgery of public documents means in our country.

As this news reports, Ministry of Finance in Japan will admit they have altered, or more exactly, forged documents on the sale of the land to an ultra right private educational organization, Moritomo gakuen, with very low price. The founder of Moritomo gakuen had been ideologically close to our Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. 

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-japan-politics/japans-finance-ministry-to-admit-altering-land-sale-documents-source-idUSKBN1GM0AD

This scandal of the sales was first reported by Asahi Shimbun on Feb 9 last year. On Feb 17, against the pursuit for commitment of the scandal by the opposite parties, Abe has denied his commitment of this scandal and has announced he would resign the position of PM and even the membership of Parliament if it was proved that he or his wife had been involved in it. Forgery of the documents seem to have been started at the same time along with what Abe alleged then.

They say the government would charge this forgery on a bureaucrat who used to make false answers to inquiries by the opposite parties to defend Abe and has resigned his position of the Commisioner of the National Tax Agency yesterday. He has been at a position of Ministry of Finance responsible for the purchase and sale of national properties and later has been promoted to the present position by the government.

This plot proposed by the government seems too unreasonable due to the timing relationship between scooping the event and forging false documents by Ministry of Finance. Forging public documents is a definite felony which bureaucrats will never commit. It is most likely that Abe has ordered them to do this forgery. A person having actually done rewriting the documents at the office has killed himself a few days ago. This sad news told us what a stress it had been for those involving in this forgery.

This is only an aspect of the forgeries this government has made for the past years. A few more scandals of cronysm, statistics in labor policy fallaciously favoring the discretionary labor system and even fraud data of statistics in economy are such examples. The present government has deformed the governing system in our country. It has injured our country so deeply that they should resign as soon as possible. 

3/03/2018

It is not only a # Me too issue but also an issue of abuse of the power by the government

This news has been reported in various countries around the world.

http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/wireStory/patriarchal-japan-risky-women-53412136

Their emphasis is invariably on the point that our society is behind or even against the # Me too movement in the world. It is true. But this case has the other more serious aspect than that.

The suspect was being arrested at an airport when he was coming back from abroad to Japan. The regional police had already got a permit to arrest him for suspicion of rape to Shiori Ito by the court. However, the chief of criminal investigation at the main office abruptly ordered them, waiting for him at the airport to execute the arrest, to stop the enforcement. This chief used to be a secretary of chief cabinet secretary Suga. The suspect has consulted to one of the cabinet member on this issue.

The suspect has written a book to flatter PM Abe and is known to have had close relationship with him. So there is a strong suspicion that the authority has aribitrarily stopped the police to arrest him. It could be an abuse of the political power. This is a critical issue for soundness of our democracy.

One of the facts which makes us suspect of this abuse of the power is that NHK, the public broadcasting, won't report on this issue at all, even though they have done with # Me too movement in the world. NHK is believed to stand on the position close to the authority nowadays.

This is not a personal crime but also a pretty political issue.

2/27/2018

A gift from David Gordon

Today, I found a parcel mail from the US on the table in the living room. The sender's name, David Gordon, hasn't lit in my memory at once. Opening the parcel, I remembered he had been the author of "Carmel Impresarios", of which I have sent some proofreading to him. Yes, it was the book he had promised me to send for the token of his gratitude for my proofreading.


On the title page, he has given me an acknowledgement, which is a great honor to me. 


It says " To Shin Onisawa  In a shared love of the music of J.S.Bach, and with deepest gratitude for reading "Carmel Impresarios   David Oregon USA Feb 2018".

I am deeply honored to receive such a gift from the author of the book I have thoroughly enjoyed reading through. In the dedication of this book "The Little Bach Book", I found the name of Helmut Rilling. Gordon says he was one of the four conductors who had invited him as a soloist at concerts and, without their encouragements, he could not be acquainted with J.S.Bach. It was from 1983 to 1984. As written elsewhere in this blog, in mid '70s, I have listened to Matthews Passion of Rilling conducting Stuttgart Bach Ensemble performed in Tokyo. Ever since then, I have been being enchanted with this great music. I was only a listener then. However, I still feel I have had a mysterious connection with both of them by a chance through the love for J.S.Bach. 

I have sent an e mail saying my heartly thanks to him. I also mentioned of Prof Isoyama who had recently passsed away. He has been one of the most renowned researcher of J.S.Bach and is missed by many music fans here. His book will find a place of bibliography on J.S.Bach in my bookshelf beside to Isoyama's books.