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How come Japan's opposition parties can't mount a credible challenge to the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and its junior partner, the Komeito Party?

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It's the ONLY reason Abe and his neo fascists are in power.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Because Japan has no clearly articulated identity, there is no distinction between nationalism and patriotism, their constitution was imposed, civil society is anemic (there are few liberals), and the hammer that sticks out gets hammered.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Because the LDP has bought the votes of rural Japan by taxing imported food, and heavily subsidizing Japanese agriculture, and has found a way to allow rural voter's votes to be counted 2.6 times. This means that even though farmers and the agricultural sector is a small part of Japan, the LDP can still win a majority with their vote. Were Japan like any aother democracy where some are not "more equal" than others, the LDP would not be the major player it is today.

So the rest of Japan must pay two-to-three times as much for food as Europe or America, the LDP stays in power, and those of us who live in the cities can do nothing to change it because our votes have little value.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Vote disparity is definitely one issue. Then again, 2.6 times sounds a lot better than what it used to be. I seem to remember Okamoto and Rohlen (a textbook) describing it as closer to 3.3 times back in the early nineties. Another major issue is the lack of leadership talent in opposition ranks. The majority of them come across as over-educated fops who lack an affinity with the electorate.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

because they are good at complaining but when they actually get into power, all their campaign promises fall by the way side and nothing actually gets done and they have no foreign policy and japan suffers on the world stage. i believe the sale of the senkankus and the russians and korean visits to disputed islands all happened on their watch.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

MacArthur syndrome. Like kids in the playground.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Japan is all about "normal".

If 49% of people complain about something they're trouble-makers.

If 51% of people complain about something then it is "normal" and this thing had better change.

Japanese politics runs the same.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@HongoTAFEinmate

Vote disparity is definitely one issue. Then again, 2.6 times sounds a lot better than what it used to be. I seem to remember Okamoto and Rohlen (a textbook) describing it as closer to 3.3 times back in the early nineties

Intriguing. Anywhere I can do some further reading on this? As I've lived in the countryside here, I can totally understand this. They're militant voters out there!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Apathy

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Apathy and a distinct lack of interest outside of anything other than work, variety TV shows and looking like your doing well.

However this isn't just a Japan problem, its world wide, replace variety TV shows with reality TV Shows and it describes most western countries too.

Start talking about politics, religion or anything thing which has very real effects for everyone and people act like you are some crazed lunatic obsessed with causing problems.. we seem to be in an age of anti-intellectualism.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

I think the issue for posters here is that Americans are pretty much into their politics... the Japanese aren't.

Politics isn't interesting... and most people have more interesting things to think about or do, such as working, shopping, relaxing, going out, staying in... tons of stuff more interesting than a bunch of suits arguing with each other.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japanese people do not think about the policies they want the government to enact, they just don't want an bunch of imbeciles pretending to run the show.

The politicians engage themselves in trivial politics and seek to not appear as imbeciles.

This leaves un-elected bureaucrats free to do pretty much whatever they like with regards to actual policy and tax payer's money.

It's seen best by the way the Ministry of Finance takes spending requests from each ministry, rather than the Minister of Finance deciding budget allocations and instructing each ministry to spend within it's given allocation, as "leadership" would normally have it.

An effective opposition party would be one that would take the reins instead of taking cues from the bureaucrats.

But big changes rarely ever happen in Japan. Absolute economic ruin through failure of this pathetic system of "government" will have to befall the country before it has one of those Meiji Revolution moments and everyone sees the obvious need to make changes again.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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