25 May 2008

Outrage in Japan! Kitties Forced into Slave Labor

Some might find it cute and silly that a cat named Tama is a "Super-Stationmaster" employed by Wakayama Electric Railway, who has delighted Japanese train-goers since 2006. But underneath the surface of feline employment belies a seedy underbelly of Dickensian-like serfdom. From Breitbart:

"Tama is the only stationmaster as we have to reduce personnel costs. You say you could ask for the cat's help, but she is actually bringing luck to us," Wakayama Electric spokeswoman Keiko Yamaki said. The company feeds her in lieu of salary....Those who want to greet her must be careful so as not to miss her. "She works nine to five and takes Sundays off," Yamaki said.

48 hours for a work week and only getting fed instead of a true "living wage" is an egregious violation of this cat's rights. These brave worker cats need to be unionized and someone needs to alert PETA.

In all seriousness, this article begs the eternal question I've puzzled over in my time in Japan with the Navy, why the hell are the Japanese so damn weird?

Tama the Stationmaster Cat Receives No Compensation For This Humiliating Outfit (from AFP)