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Just a note on word choices... the "Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere" was the name of the colonial empire that Japan built through conquests and occupation starting in 1940.


Not sure if this is part of a joke or not, but Japan's history of war-time brutality during World War 2 is pretty extreme.

I'm fairly confident Pinboard won't be raping hundreds of thousands (millions?) of people, engaging in wars of aggression on its neighbors, or conducting worse chemical warfare and other medical experiments than the Nazis. I can see how one might get confused though.

In the same way is still happening in places like Okinawa: http://www.stripes.com/news/pacific/okinawa/marine-given-fou... ?

Nice troll, but one Marine in a large force committing a horrible crime and then being punished isn't really indicative of a national policy. If it were, the US would also be supporting killing US soldiers on military bases in Texas due to MAJ Hasan's spree shooting a couple years ago.

OTOH, it's crazy that that guy got only 4 years. 10-20 would be more appropriate. Hopefully being convicted under Japanese law doesn't prevent additional action under UCMJ to run consecutively.

Noticed this as well... "Co-Prosperity _____" should sound hauntingly familiar to anyone with any amount of knowledge about WWII.

It seems like the "Co-Prosperity Cloud" is a joke, but even if it is, it's a joke in poor taste considering the atrocities committed by Japan, and not even an especially clever one (annexation and abuse for profit is not really the same idea - I hope - that Pinboard is expressing).

Considering that > 90% of the people who witnessed said atrocities are no longer with us (and 100% don't read HN), the time for jokes has come at last. Actually there have been numerous humorous takes on WWII for decades now.

In "jokes", people often state propositions that seem opposed to what we would hope they believe.

Regarding atrocities, you clearly have no idea how deeply the wartime atrocities impacted many Asian families. Many Korean families I know refuse to buy Japanese cars or products (my mom is Japanese, so I've been told this many many times). My Korean father-in-law was an orphan because of the Japanese occupation.

In any case, the above fails the first rule of jokes... they're supposed to be funny. I thought the post was funny enough. But the reference to a co-prosperity system didn't add much (any?) humor to it. Just pointing that out to the OP...

That's not the 1st rule of jokes! The 1st rule of jokes is that there are no rules. The 2nd rule of jokes is that everyone finds different things funny. The 3rd rule is to break all the rules.

Repurposing the stilted propaganda of long-ago times, or of clumsy tyrants, for subtly absurdist/ironic humor value, does not in any way lessen the original horrors. It celebrates the distance we've achieved, while also offering a teaching moment by contrast/reference.

See also: "we will bury you", "let a thousand flowers bloom", "we had to destroy the village in order to save it", "i have in my hands a list of hundreds of known Communists", "the war to end all wars", "the mother of all battles", "this blogger has been harmonized", etc.

The anti-Japanese grudge does run fairly deep, but as far as I can see it seems to be slowing significantly in younger people. The parents of people I went to school with (graduated university 2010) might hold one, but my friends are much more moderate.

Personally I thought the co-prosperity added to the humour with an over-the-top name, and I detected a slight whiff of Eastern Bloc over-the-top naming, akin to Council for Mutual Economic Assistance or Polish–Soviet Friendship Society. But then my ethnic background is Polish and not an East/Southeast Asian one.

I have been looking for a good taste life coach and a cleverness tutor as well. Are you available?

It was the name of an empire, but it was also the name of the ostensible ideology behind that empire as well. Did you read the whole Wikipedia article you gave a link to? What Pinboard is trying to do here actually does bear a resemblance to what turned out to be the empty rhetoric of the Japanese Empire, and so I don't think it's inappropriate for people forming a commune to call it "Communist" - despite the horrific atrocities perpetuated by real Communist states.

Check out the book Flyboys, by James Brady. (http://www.amazon.com/Flyboys-Story-Courage-James-Bradley/dp...). It gives some interesting background on why Japan did what they did (their expansion) and it also documents the atrocities committed by both sides. It was a very eye-opening book, and when you are done reading it, you will know why war is hell.

I noticed that as well and thought it was in bad taste. It would be like using the term "Reich"

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