Telegraphed Gazette. 23 April 2014
Hello folks and welcome to another edition of the Telegraphed Gazette for the 23rd of April 2014, in the headlines today: McDonalds has halted its foreign worker practices pending further investigation, and Justin Bieber apologizes for visiting a Japanese war shrine.
McDonalds has halted all temporary foreign workers contracts while a third party conducts an audit of the company’s use of the program. According to a news article from CBC, due to recent criticism and public outcry over certain franchises choosing to hire temporary foreign workers and giving them priority over local Canadians, the McDonalds company has opted to surrender itself to investigation and to review whether or not it will continue with this practice. Federal employment minister Jason Kenney has also noted that anyone caught abusing the program could face fraud charges and possible jail time according to CBC.
Right well many of you readers saw this coming, with the whole fiasco touched on in a previous gazette edition some time ago. McDonalds is very much in a “damage control” mode as it scrambles to save its name from the pig’s pen so to speak. The company – unlike many franchise owners – knows it cannot survive without customers, and if it goes far enough to piss off a national government, the results could be disastrous for the company. Indeed McDonalds wishes to quickly save its business so that the profits continues to pour in through food purchases; after all that is what their business is primarily interested in. Like I said before: “who will you turn to when the locals stop buying your products?When the locals discover you are mistreating their fellow countrymen, will they continue to give you business?” The link to this story is located below this paragraph.
Now normally I do not chase after celebrity news but I found this story to be “interesting”: performer Justin Bieber is in some hot water over his recent visit to a Japanese war shrine. According to another CBC article, the young singer had recently apologized for visiting the war shrine and taking photos of the place; mostly due to pressure from the Chinese government. Bieber is no stranger to controversy as last year he visited the Anne Frank House museum and wrote a rather distasteful comment in the guestbook at the museum.
Alright well what can be said about this: the boy is still a boy and he has much to learn of the world in which he lives in. Fame and fortune are not barriers against politics, and Bieber must understand this if he is to survive with his career intact. While young girls in mostly English-speaking countries adore him, his fan base could shrink over time as these young girls find other musicians who are less outlandish, and more mature. Bieber is not popular outside of his circle of screaming fans, and indeed he needs to learn to watch what he says and what he writes and posts on the internet.
Now with the whole: “smarten up young man” talk aside, let us talk about the scenario at hand. China was quick to condemn Biebers’ visit mostly because there was a certain conflict some 70 years ago in which China suffered greatly at the hands of Japan and her imperial ambitions. China lost a lot of good soldiers fighting the Japanese, and during the course of the pacific campaign it was China who had to grind out day after day just to survive against the Japanese – this is especially true for those who were living in occupied territories like Hong Kong and Shanghai. The US may have gotten lucky via their Island-hoping campaign, but their casualty numbers pale in comparison to Chinese forces who were fighting for their very survival as a nation and as a people. When compared to other imperial powers, Japan is by far the worst with respect to absorbing acquired territories. One key thing that the British never did was cut off the heads of defeated kneeling men, or bury them alive just because they were of a certain group of people – try swallowing that the next time you want to open your mouth and complain about something of which you are most fortunate to enjoy on this side of the earth: life.
China to this day – both Taiwan and the PRC – are not entirely willing to simply forget the past, and every time some Japanese official visits a site that remembers the soldiers from that time period as heroes, it will be met with criticism of the strongest language. Yet if those young men who went forth to fight for the Empire of the rising sun were not remembered by their own countrymen, who will remember them? Like it or not, Japan has a history, and while some may condemn it, understand that she has a right to pay respects to their war dead, much like Germany has a right to remember German soldiers who fought for Germany – keyword “Germany,” and not “the Nazi party.” Again this comes back to a key point that needs to be stated: this is politics. Japan will have her opinion, and China will have hers and people caught in between need to be careful lest they upset both parties and run the risk of walking into someone who keeps up with the news and is armed with a melee weapon. While you may be relatively safe here in the west, other parts of the world are not so forgiving, and shouting: “freedom of speech” will not save you from being beaten until you are bleeding and unconscious. The link to the story is located below this paragraph.
Alright folks that concludes this edition of the Telegraphed Gazette: thank you for reading, and I will see you next time.