Ghost in the Shell: Translation and Editing

Marxism - Physics

In the TV series Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd GIG, there are some significant inconsistencies among:


I have expected that the HK/DVD English subtitles (being what a Hong Kong Chinese thinks that Japanese words mean in English) might sometimes be very far off, such as in episode 20 of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd GIG where Motoko says in Japanese audio "Gos's mind is consumed by justice [ seigi ]", and the HK/DVD subtitle says "Gos's brains is being eaten by semen [ seiki ] ".


Sometimes the Bandai English audio corrects HK/DVD subtitle erroneous translations, such as in episode 22 of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, when Laughing Man intervenes against the sadistic lesbian DEA agent who is acting as Motoko's body-change doctor, and has a ghost-hacking conversation with Motoko in which Motoko quotes Wilhelm Steckel as saying:

according to HK/DVD subtitle "Only immature people will choose to die for honour ... Only mature people will die for their ideals.", while

Bandai English audio has the correct quote "The mark of the immature man is that he wants to die nobly for a cause, while the mark of the mature man is that he wants to live humbly for one.".


However, and somewhat disturbing to me, at other times the Bandai English audio editing seems to substantially change the meaning of the original Japanese audio.

For example, according to a 28 February 2005 rec.arts.anime.misc post by scott34... and reply by "S.t.A.n.L.e.E" :

[ post ] "... The original Japanese airing of Ghost in the Shell SAC episode 16 features the Tackikomas singing the Holocaust song "Donna Donna"... This is particularly poignant because the Tachikomas are going to be dissected at the laboratory.  Batou asks them if they understand what the song means, and the Tackikomas niavely give the literal interpretation as Batou silently watches them leave.  This is one of the cleverest moments in the series.

The official ...[ Bandai English dubbed ]... release has the holocaust song changed to something else entirely, some bland Japanese thing. ...".

[ reply ] "... The lyrics of the song are:

Akaikutsu haiteta onna no ko [the girl who wore red shoes]

Ijin-san ni tsurerarete icchata [a foreigner took her and gone] ...".



In episode 26 of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, the Police Chief / Prosecutor walks away from the parking garage where he may have planted a bomb in the car carrying Serrano in order to prevent Serrano from public testimony about the Laughing man, and says:

according to HK/DVD subtitle "Let the person who has lost his body, get peace.", while

according to Bandai English audio "You have to adapt to survive. Bend your morals or you'll break eventually.".



In episode 22 of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, when the sadistic lesbian DEA agent acting as Motoko's body-change doctor sees that the electrode needles which she inserted into Motoko's brain as torture had been removed, she is startled because they were removed by the Laughing Man while he had ghost-hacked the agent so that the agent was unaware of his presence, the agent said:

according to HK/DVD subtitle, "shen?"

according to Bandai English audio on the USA TV show Adult Swim, there is a silent omission of "shen?".



In episode 26 of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, in Motok's final conversation with the Laughing man:

according to HK/DVD subtitle Motoko says "I found one of the possibilities" and then holds up a Tachikoma Quantum Consciousness Computer Chip and says "A successor [ kokeisha ] I think so"; while

according to Bandai English audio says "Everyday human curiosity [ kokishin ]".

When I listen closely to the Japanese audio, it is clear to me that Motoko is saying "kokeisha hai" which is consistent with the HK/DVD subtitle.


Why has Bandai so substantially Americanized its USA English audio dub ?

Is it because Bandai thinks that only Human life forms can be victimized by a Holocaust ?

Is it because Bandai thinks that killing to silence a BadGuy/witness and thus protect the Peace of a CyberBrain/Internet Intelligence is Bad, but killing that witness to close a case is acceptable under the concept of Moral Relavativism and is therefore Good ?

Is it because Bandai thinks that its USA TV/DVD audience is unable to comprehend spiritual concepts such as "shen" ?

Is it because Bandai thinks that its USA TV/DVD audience is unable to deal with the possibility that humans might someday be succeeded by another form of intelligent life ?


Whatever the motives of Bandai, one thing is clear: the Bandai USA English version differs significantly from the original Japanese version,

and the differences go far beyond such things as the Bandai USA TV Adult Swim censorshp of episode 26 of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, by cutting of the words "Fuck You" being written on the stair rail of the Laughing Man's library. ( Although that cut does omit a significant reference to J. D. Salinger's work, it might be viewed as being mandated by USA TV language restrictions, even though Adult Swim is a late-night cable non-broadcast TV show. )


Something else that is clear is that Bandai ( at least with respect to the first TV series Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex ) has not changed the Marxist philosophical tendencies of the Japanese version. For example, in Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex:, the following material is sustantially the same in Bandai USA English as in Japanese:

In episode 26, the Laughing Man also identifies Masachi Osawa as having ideas similar to those of Frederick Jameson. According to an Asian Social Psychology paper:

"... In Osawa's theory of body, body is defined as something in front of which something appears, that is, something whose life-world is not nothingness. It is ordinarily said that something appears in front of an individual person who has mind in a body. But, the definition of body is far more loose than the ordinary concept of an individual person. The body defined here never assumes 'mind in a body'.

... The theory starts by assuming two levels of body, each of which is never a body that has a mind in it, though.

The first level of body refers to bodies that are being replaced with each other continuously and therefore bodies that are melted into one like two kinds of gas that are perfectly mixed up. It means that one body becomes another body, which will be referred to as inversion of centripetal and centrifugal points later. It should be noted that the replacement is not experience in which one feels like being other but one literally becomes other.

The second level of a body emerges from bodies in the first level. It emerges from the bodies being replaced with each other as if it had already existed prior to the bodies in the first level and indicated to the bodies in the first level how they should be and what something in front of them should be. It is the body in the second level that indicates the meaning of something that appears in front of us. The second level of body is a transcendental body that is constructed by frequent mutual replacement among bodies in the first level. The transcendental body might be called 'Autre (Other in English)' by French psychiatrist Lacan (1973). The transcendental body indicates the meaning of an object that the first level of bodies is faced with.

Relations between bodies in the first level and a body in the second level parallels the relationship between being something and the meaning of something (i.e., because the meaning of something should have been there before something appears). For example, when you say, 'Oh, that is a dog', the meaning, dog, should have already existed before the object appears in front of you. Otherwise, it is impossible for you to make that remark.

One might want to know how 'body' in Osawa's theory is related to our usual notion of a body that is ordinarily believed to contain the mind in it.

Here, we should remember that the usual notion of a body is nothing other than the meaning that is given to a specific type of an articulated segment of our life world although the notion is held by the vast majority of people in the world.

'Mind in a body' is the meaning that is indicated by a transcendental body that has been constructed by a huge number of bodies in the first level in different cultures and in different ages, especially in modern ages. ...".


Marxist influence in Japan has been important for many years. For example, in theoretical physics there has as yet been no Nobel prize for Kobayashi and Maskawa, even though their 1973 paper established the 3-generation part of the Standard Model and it was confirmed experimentally by the 1974 discovery of the charm quark and the 1976 discovery of the beauty quark.

To put the importance of the Kobayashi-Maskawa paper into perspective, here is my short version of the history of the formulation of the Standard Model:

In his book "The Evidence for the Top Quark", by Kent W. Staley (Cambridge 2004), Staley says: "... some japanese physicists felt strongly that Western physicists, especially in the United States, systematically ignored their work. ...". Kobayashi and Maskawa were connected with the Japanese physicist Sakata and the Nagoya group of physicists. Sakata used Lenin's doctrine of inexhaustibility to see that protons and neutrons were not point particles, but were composite, and, further, Sakata used Lenin's doctrine to see that quantum physics should be non-local ( in line with Bohm, who has since the 1950s been an outcast from the Oppenheimer-type physics establishment ). It is my opinion that the failure of the Nobel committees to recognize Kobayashi and Maskawa may be related to the facts that their work was closely related to that of the Nagoya group (they both got their Ph.D.'s at Nagoya) and that the fundamental philosophy of the Nagoya group was Dialectical Materialism.

In addition ot the Kobayashi-Maskawa situation, Staley's book dealt with the circumstances surrounding Fermilab's T-quark data and its analysis. In his book, Staley says that Kris Sliwa is NOW "... able to show ... at various conferences ... the fact that some plots indeed look strange ..." whereas, IN 1992-1995, and for some time thereafter, (see pages 123, 132, 138, 141): "... According to Dave Gerdes, "Krys really never got the time of day after [the appearance of the articles in New Scientist and Science] .. [He] took it very personally, and responded very personally" ... (Recall Kuni Kondo's comment - "People said it's a very nice method, and encouraged ME to work on that" - and how Krys Sliwa "never really got the time of day" in the wake of the controversies ...) ... Krys Sliwa ... objected that "[w]ith the Godparents for the top analysis becoming a part of the closed analysis group the principle of independent internal review has been abandoned ... Krys Sliwa ... thought ... a top signal ... was marginal and being railroaded through ... Sliwa observed that "... None of the already published CDF papers should have been submitted yet, judged by the 'old' standards." ... Sliwa also complained that discrepancies appeared in some distributions ...".

It seems to me that in the 1992-1995 time period, Fermilab's interest was in getting credit for discovery of the T-quark, which objective could be obtained by finding a signal in the data that COULD be interpreted as a T-quark and trashing all other possible signals as background and supporting that view by considering only the possibility that the events had to be either T-quark or background, and that nothing more subtle could possibly exist.

To pursue that objective, any researcher who exercised any independent thought had to be silenced, ESPECIALLY if his arguments looked reasonable. Kris Sliwa's conference papers Acta Physica Polonica B 33: 3861-7 and Acta Physica Polonica B 34: 4457-75 heighten my suspicions about Fermilab's actions in that time frame, particularly when he says ( at page 4469 of the second cited paper ): "... It is worthwhile to note that the value of M_top = 175 GeV/c^2 could be obtained INDIRECTLY from global fits to the electroweak parameters ... but ONLY if one ASSUMES M_H = 300 GeV/c^2. The fact that this particular value of M_H - 300 GeV/c^2 was used in the electroweak fits - consistency checks of the Standard Model from 1993-1996 was not emphasized when claims were made that LEP "predicted" the top quark mass of about 175 GeV/c^2 in advance of the CDF and D0 direct measurements. ...".

However, in 2004, Fermilab had already cemented its "discovery" in the public mind and in the folklore of physics, so Fermilab since then has had two objectives:

If (as is in my opinion likely) LHC were to show that the situation is more complicated, and that the 175 GeV T-quark is an unrealisic oversimplification, then the only way Fermilab could salvage some reputation would be to itself discover "... the interesting flaw in their achievement ..." (quote from page 296 of Staley's book) and try to get credit for the subtleties that they viciously suppressed a decade ago.

Such a course of action would both pre-empt being embarrassed by LHC truth-tellers, and also be a justification for more funding to study the subtleties in the events, and it would explain why Kris Sliwa was an embarrassment to be kept under the rug a decade ago, and why he is now exactly Fermilab needs to advance its agenda, so that Kris Sliwa actually gets the place of honor in the book by Kent Staley, at the end of its epilogue (at pages 295-296):

"... In a paper recently presented in Poland, CDF physicist Krys Sliwa discussed some reasons for thinking surprises may be awaiting physicists at the Tevatron as run II proceeds. Noting that in the small statistics related to top neither collaboration found "significant disagreements" with standard model predictions, Sliwa described "a few hints that the simplest hypothesis that the top candidate events are just the t tbar events and SM background may not be entirely correct" (Sliwa 2002, 3866). These "hints" include the fact that indirect estimates of the mass of the top quark based on standard model assumptions yield slightly lower values (in the neighborhood of 150-167 GeV/c^2) than the measurements just cited from CDf and D-zero top data samples. Also, there are more double-tagged W + jet events in CDF's sample than the standard model would lead one to expect. Also mentioned by Sliwa are two CDF and one D-zero dilepton events that "yield poor fits to the t tbar hypothesis" and have "unexpectedly large" amounts of missing transverse energy as well as large transverse energy leptons. Furthermore, when individual top events are plotted by mass, both collaborations find more than expected at higher masses. With the larger data sets and slightly higher energies of run II, Sliwa noted that such hints "should be monitored carefull, as they may be offereing us glimpses of new physics" (ibid., 3866).

Sliwa struck a hopeful note with regard to just those things in the data that threaten our current understanding. Even when experimenters find that they have achieved experimenter's success, they look more closely to see the interesting flaw in their achievement - the discrepancy that will mean, not failure necessarily, but the possibility of some new success to strive for. Just as the prelude to discovery should not be seen in terms of a monotonic preparation for the discovery that occurs, so the aftermath of discovery should not be seen as the straightforward unfolding of the consequences of the knowledge thus gained. CDF and D-zero went to great lengths to establish that they now know some things about the world that were previously unknown. Just as important is the probing of this new realm of information to find out just what it is that we do not yet know."

In line with such T-quark related ideas, I presented a 12-minute talk at the APS April 2005 meeting in Tampa, in a session chaired by Joseph Lykken of Fermilab. who expressed some interest in my proposal for how Fermilab could in the next 2 to 4 years (before LHC gets up to full speed) possibly unravel the details of how the Higgs, T-quark, and Vacuum are related, thus stealing the thunder of the LHC and effectively rendering it irrelevant (except for dotting i's and crossing t's).

The key is the work of Yamawaki et al on describing the Higgs as a T-quark condensate in terms of Nambu-Jona-Lasinio and related models, including an 8-dim Kaluza-Klein that fits well with my model. Roughly,

It will be interesting to see what happens. Some factors are:


Tony Smith's Home Page