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Shinzo Abe sought to revive economy, fulfill conservative agenda

4 Comments
By Linda Sieg

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© Thomson Reuters 2020.

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I want to sacrifice myself as one lawmaker to make true conservatism take root in Japan.

He cared far more about instilling his regressive fantasy image of Japan than actually helping Japan, its economy or its people. Unfortunately, i don't that changing much with whoever follows him into office either. Japan will continue to fall behind the rest of Asia until they get some new blood in power.

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Abe was not just an ultra-nationalist--he studied at an obscure second-rate right-wing university--he was also a xenophobe: One of his last major acts was to bar permanent non-Japanese residents from coming home because of the coronavirus while allowing Japanese, diseased or not, to come and go as they wished. In the dispute S. Korea over wartime slaves" compensation he slapped dubious sanctions on S. Korea. That backfired when the S. Koreans launched a boycott of Japanese goods and services. None of his conservative reforms worked.

Abe lived in an isolated Gone with the wind fantasy life which captivated a lot of Japanese--not a few most likely enjoyed seeing permanent residents put in their place by being shut out. But no matter what, Abe did, like Jay Gatsby, he could not bring back the past, thought it always seems just within his grasp.

So it's Abe out and foreign permanent residents back in. Somehow things do turn out as they should.

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Abe hailed from a wealthy political family that included a foreign minister father and a great-uncle who served as premier. But when it came to many policies, his grandfather, the late prime minister Nobusuke Kishi, seems to have mattered most.

In the end, Abe's reign looks more like that of his great-uncle, another long-term postwar PM Sato Eisaku who is said to have excelled at personnel management and general elections.

Abe's overall policy turns out to be far from hawkish and conservative, much unlike what right-wing supporters expected from him. In fact, many conservatives have become anti-Abe.

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Under Abe and the LDP, the majority of the Japanese people have gotten steadily poorer!

A massive failure!

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