The Valentine’s culture that is Japan against the romantic-industrial complex

On February 14th, Kakumei-teki himote doumei (革命的非モテ同盟) — literally, “Revolutionary Alliance of Men That Woman Are Not Attracted To”– will gather in Shibuya, an area of Tokyo popular with young couples, to protest Valentine’s Day and its roots in what they call “romantic capitalist oppression.”

The group, known as Kakuhidou for short, was started in 2006, when its founder, Katsuhiro Furusawa, returned home one day after being dumped by his girlfriend and began reading the Communist Manifesto. He quickly came to the realization that being unpopular with girls is a class issue.

Since then, the group has held several demonstrations each year, all coinciding with holidays that are associated with romantic love in Japanese culture, such as Valentine’s Day, Christmas, and White Day .

Kakuhidou’s slogans combine Japanese internet culture with classical Marxism, and its origins in cyberspace can be charted through its choice of language. For example, one frequent target of the group’s admonitions are the so-called “riyajuu” (リア充), a neologism frequently used in online communities such as 2chan to refer to those who experience fulfillment in their offline lives (riyajuu is a portmanteau that combines “real” with “jyuujitsu”, the Japanese word for fulfillment).

The release posted on Kakuhidou’s website for this year’s anti-Valentines parade says “the blood-soaked conspiracy of Valentine’s Day, driven by the oppressive chocolate capitalists, has arrived once again. In order to create a brighter future, we call for solidarity among our unloved comrades, so that we may demonstrate in resolute opposition to Valentine’s Day and the romantic industrial complex.”

At previous events, leaders of the group have yelled slogans such as “I hope all riyajuus explode! But we’re still a little jealous!” while wearing shirts that say, roughly, “sex is useless.”

There is more here.  By the way, the group’s official vehicle is a Mercedes-Benz.

For the pointer I thank Andrea Castillo.


Paging Michel Houellebecq!

Exactly. Why trudge through Marx when you can get the same thing from Extension du domaine de la lutte.

No one say anything about high status males

Evolutionary Psychology recently published an article on how bodily attractiveness and egalitarianism are negatively related in males. In light of this, unattractive men engaging in an a Marxian analysis of their plight seems only natural.

And yet it's not shocking that only Asian and perhaps white men would do this. Plenty of black guys don't get laid, but they'd never draw attention to it as something to celebrate.

セックス なんかいくらやったって無駄だ!!!!!!!!BAHAHAHAHHA...the herbivore movement. Go Tofu!

There's no status to gain by signaling affiliation with these folks.

Ahem, yeah, what a bunch of losers!

"... returned home one day after being dumped by his girlfriend and began reading the Communist Manifesto."

There's the problem right there. Perhaps instead he should have deliberated on what it says about a person that they would turn to the Communist Manifesto after a romantic rejection. Correcting the underlying issues that led to that impulse would be the key to a more fulfilling love life.

Some turn to beer, others turn to the communist manifesto. Both make the user direct his anger outwards and give him an inflated sense of self importance. I think back to an experience I had in college, after my girlfriend dumped me I started to become more involved with the Klan, and was even more angry at the leftists I blamed for my problems. In Japan they don't really have leftists like ours and they don't have Jews, so all they can blame is "the rich." I doubt the individuals here would be much helped by embracing liberal, neocon, or whatever ideology you'd have them believe in. These guys are "losers" because of their personalities and their lack of "game," not because of their ideological views.

Refreshing trolling after too much JAMRC! Thanks!

In the US, the same type of people tend to get really into bizzare forms of pop evo psych.

If they only buy into Evo-Psyc, why do so many end up at an economics blog?

They seem to have a sense of humor about their plight. That is good. Best that the unloved masses stick to self-deprecating humor rather than violence.

I don't know a damn thing about Japanese but Google translate says "革命" is "revolution" while the two individual glyphs by themselves translate as "leather" and "life". Does anyone have any insight on how "leather life" came to mean "revolution" ?

The character can mean leather, but it can also be used to mean "change" or "reform." Partially this is because it's used to mean leather or tanned hides, as opposed to 皮, which carries the meaning of skin or *untreated* hide. The "change" meaning comes from the transformation of raw hide to leather. Note that when meaning hide/leather as a single word, both 革 and 皮 are pronounced "kawa," In Sino-Japanese compounds (similar to Latinate or Greek words in English) the one here pronounced "kaku."

命 can mean "life," (inochi,) but the Chinese character also (and based on the etymology of the ideograph as a compound of "mouth" with another "order/command" character, probably originally) means "order/command," and it has that meaning Sino-Japanese compounds, where it tends to be pronounced mei. It also can mean "destiny."

"革命的非モテ同盟 literally, “Revolutionary Alliance of Men That Woman Are Not Attracted To”"

Eh, not really literally. There's nothing about "men" or "women" in there. "Literally" it's something like "Revolutionary unpopular (with the opposite sex) union." (非)モテ "(un)popular" can be used of men or women. ("Literally" it means something like "(not) going to be possessed/owned/doted upon," if you keep wanting to follow etymology to where it gets silly.) Though, sure, we can reference Quine and indeterminacy of translation and all that.

He has arrived at the same conclusion as Aristotle Onassis, but from the opposite direction.

"If women didn't exist, all the money in the world would have no meaning."

Onassis should have reversed things: "If money didn't exist, all the women in the world would have no meaning."

Ok, so it's not just a North Korean thing then ...

Hazel wins the thread.

What is the Japanese character for "alliance of geeky white guys who read esoteric economics blogs"?

I wonder if this is due to having 2 valentines day (plus Xmas.)

Taiwan's commercial culture also pushes 2 valentine's day plus they tried to add in Japan's white day.

You quickly feel a bit exploited.

The Communist Manifesto, is there nothing stupid it cannot do?

So really not that different than an American MRA dudes, but maybe they have a bit more humor and less anger?

The Japanese characters must have attracted it.

No wander the Japanese economy is in a mess.

Every event is a shopping event. The Chinese has the most prosperous anti valentine capitalist event ever. "China's Anti-Valentine's Festival Is The World's Biggest E-Commerce Holiday"

"Alibaba’s Singles Day hit a record this year: $9.3 billion (RMB 57.1 billion) in gross merchandise value. That’s 60% increase from last year’s $5.8 billion."

And the Japanese has to resort to Communist Manifesto ?? Now who is more communist?

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そう言うところに行ったことがありません ハワイで挙式とか渡航滞在費全部タダで招待してくれるような人がやるもんだろ
ワイは他人の不幸のほうが好きなんやで 私は節目節目で彼に泣かされ続けました。 吉田美和

金も飛んでくし準備が苦痛過ぎてたまらなかった。 自分の時は交通費往復分と宿手配までしたけど、 結婚祝いギフト
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