politics

Abe turns to foreign experts for advice on delaying second tax hike

28 Comments
By ELAINE KURTENBACH

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

©2023 GPlusMedia Inc.

28 Comments
Login to comment

Abe turns to foreign experts for advice on delaying second tax hike

This is literally a show and nothing more, in my opinion. Abe has done too much to destroy the trust of the people when it comes to matters that affect them.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I agree...Well my advice is: cut spending, but Abe wanted an expensive Olympics to help his construction associates. Look how much over budget the new Olympic Studium is (even with reductions).

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Abe turns to foreign experts for advice on delaying second tax hike

So he is not capable of making up his own mind?

Even he realises that Abenomics doesn't work!

4 ( +6 / -2 )

When in doubt and facing an obvious failure - blame gaikoku! Japanese Political / Economic leadership 101 manual. Rinse and repeat.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Stiglitz called for boosting demand and countering rising inequality by retraining workers, improving social services networks such as child care and improving oversight of the financial sector.

These are valid points, among others made in the piece, but I expected a stronger 'wake up call' from Stiglitz & the other experts.

Point 1. retraining workers - Just picture it. Taro Suzuki, a middle-manager in his late 40s, being retrained. Will never happen. Japan Inc. is structured in a way that once you get past the gates - get comfortable.

Point 2. oversight of the financial sector - How? And by whom? Another government panel that will get us nowhere? What action does he see being taken here?

The elephant in the room that no one addressed was that old chestnut - government spending. Hiking taxes is the quickest & easiest way for any government to increase its revenue - but at what cost? What's the point in hiking taxes when the government has a unprecedented spending problem? It's like trying to save a sinking ship with a bucket.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Delaying, if not scrapping the tax hike, is such an obviously correct thing to do. Abe's problem is the bone-headed fiscal conservative politicians, who were behind the last recession. Now they want to create another one!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

That's Stiglitz, always take inequality as his core point of view, which I think isn't really the main concern with Japan's economy. I tend to agree with another poster here who said it's more about government spending than anything else.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Abe Shinzo is a smart brilliant politician,this is a smart appreciated step shows how far he is keen to hear all available opinions of expertises,Japanese and foreigners to take the right decision on the right time.All the best Abe Shinzo.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Abe has absolutely no ability or courage to decide things on his own after that third arrow could never be drawn from the quiver. Proof that it was all hot air, and proof that he and other politicians here can do nothing but form panels to decide for them. Now they can't even do that. Total loser.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Abe can cut spending by first removing the useless pro tax-rise "finance" minister Taro Aso from the government payroll.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why the LDP would take any notice of the opinions of foreigners is beyond me. The one and only thing that concerns Abe is changing the constitution and removing the rights of the people. To that end he will stop at nothing. To me it's absolutely clear what Abe's plan is.

1) Announce a postponement of the consumption tax rise for whatever spurious reason he thinks he can get away with.

2) Announce a dual election, supposedly to "gain the support" of the people for his cowardice in not raising the consumption tax.

3) Abe needs 2/3 of the seats in both houses to push through a change in the constitution. This is one reason he is delaying reforming the unconstitutional allocation of seats as long as possible.

4) If Abe and his cronies do manage to get 2/3 of the seats you can kiss goodbye to freedom of expression, freedom of assembly and many other things taken for granted. No criticism of the LDP will be tolerated and the media will be subject to strict controls, just like in China, Russia and Turkey.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Until ruling LDP government carries out essential structural reforms of the economy, employment, agriculture, education, pensions and welfare, the inevitable consequence will be continual stagnation.

Doesn't require lectures from 'foreign experts' Stiglitz and Krugman. Just the courage to break with tradition and push reform programs through.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Pathetic. Abe needs the authority of Nobel Prize to change his consumption tax policy.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Abe needs the authority of Nobel Prize to change his consumption tax policy.

because those two are not Japanese so not related to Japan's interest groups

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

kibousha,

Abe can cut spending by first removing the useless pro tax-rise "finance" minister Taro Aso from the government payroll.

Agreed.

Other countries have finance ministers, Japan has an Aso!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Abe Shinzo is a smart brilliant politician...

And yet you seem totaly incapable of citing any brilliant achievements of his except meeting some experts. If you can't come up with any examples of him being "smart" and "brilliant" I'll just have to go along with the general consensus that he's a worthless imbecile whose career would have been over in 2007 if the DPJ leaders hadn't turned out to be almost as bad - at least none of them were neo-nazis like Abe and his Nippon Kaigi friends. Ever heard of Nippon Kaigi? Check it out if you think Abe is so wonderful. So come on. Any examples? No vague generalisations or irrelevant anecdotes, please. And winning three elections doesn't count, against the DPJ even someone more worthless than Abe could pull that off.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Saying that Abe is pathetic is perhaps the understatement of the year. Keynesian Abe asks Keynesian Krugman and Neo-Keynesian Stiglitz for advice. The only thing they said that was nearly correct is that the consumption tax increase should be delayed as the Japanese economy is too weak to endure it. In fact, the consumption tax should be rolled back at least to 3% if he really wants to stimulate consumer spending. And then he should take the "animal spirits" nonsense and flush it down the commode along with the rest of Keynes ludicrous theory. Use the Nobel certificates to wipe the stains off the porcelain.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

itsonlyrocknroll - President Reagan's structural reforms didn't turn out OK. Koizumi's reform, lifting restriction on temp work destroyed Japan's economy and society. The structural reforms only help the rich.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

In fact, the consumption tax should be rolled back at least to 3% if he really wants to stimulate consumer spending.

Unlikely to happen, as the worse things seem to get the more a morally bankrupt parasite like Abe will rely on old-style LDP money politics to keep the over-represented conservative rural base happy, complacent and feeling obligated to the local LDP dynasty.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Abe has already made up his mind. Taxpayers will have to prepare themselves for a tax raise. This will thoroughly affect the wellbeing in Japan and provoke more social unrest. I haven't heard about any microeconomic analysis. Only big names and concepts.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Hi Tinawatanabe, Close to 41% of Japan’s employees, especially the young, are stuck in irregular, low-paid jobs.

Training and development is necessary. Youth are leaving higher education ill prepared for the requirements asked from them, technical innovation is a key area.

So Employment pratices needs flexibility to lift the youth of Japan expectations. In many ways a group of powerful interest groups, from farmers to doctors to big business are holding society back and are the most resistant to change.

Abe san needs to make good his pledges and promises. At this moment opposition parties have little or no manifesto commitments on revitalizing Japans economic outlook. Reform programmes can be structured sensitivity.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Close to 41% of Japan’s employees, especially the young, are stuck in irregular, low-paid jobs.

That's why Japan need regulations, not deregulations. Japan is having many bus accidents because of easing of restrictions. The deregulations lead to oligopoly and disparity.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

itsonlyrockandroll,

Youth are leaving higher education ill prepared for the requirements asked from them, technical innovation is a key area.

So wouldn't it be a good idea to totally rewrite the education system to give young people the data and skills they need to survive rather than the mountain of useless and totally inapplicable information they have to commit to memory?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Hi BertieWooster, the students I have had the pleasure to work with have been intelligent and articulate. I don't want to focus on the negatives. Perhaps tech industries, could play a more appropriate role in helping to meet demands of an ecomony that requires high technology development skills, liasing with the established Universities and colleges.

Hi Tinawatanabe Certainly deregulation will encourage a race to the bottom. There has to be compromise higher up. The balance and challenge is improving the training and skill sets for the lowest paid and most vulnerable.

Each industry needed to look inward and make people driven investment decisions. The Government could do more to encourage this behavior. In an election year this could be a vote winner. However money for this type of stimulus package is tight.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Abe Shinzo is a smart brilliant politician,this is a smart appreciated step shows how far he is keen to hear all available opinions of expertises,

And now he's going to completely ignore them.

http://www.japantoday.com/category/politics/view/diet-passes-record-budget-abe-says-no-plans-to-postpone-consumption-tax-hike

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Hi BertieWooster, I avoided your question my apologise.

I would make changes that would introduce a vocational element that would be compulsory in a students final year.

Passing exams certainly proves that a candidate is academically reached a benchmark standard but numerous technology fields require an introduction to the whole innovative product development process. This would be invaluable.

This, in my humble opinion is the element missing at present. I have found this noticeable in numerous cases.

Some students believe that they contribution is to simply watch and imitate their senior co-workers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

itsonlyrocknroll,

No need to apologise. I have no problem with students. To be honest I think they are being short changed. They need data and skills to survive in this complex world and are given inapplicable garbage instead.

By garbage I mean this:

If you didn't know any Japanese, you might mistake a high school lesson (any subject) for a prayer group. The lesson is delivered in the same kind of monotone as a prayer, with no illustrations, examples or feedback from students. They have short breaks (40 minutes for lunch) and then more of the same.

Typically a teacher will simply read the text book, take out a sentence or so that he thinks particularly significant and write it, as is, on the board.

The materials used for the lesson are not only completely lacking in any kind of interesting features, they cover subject matter the majority of which is completely and utterly useless in life. They are taught higher mathematics, for example. Something that only very, very few will ever use, but not mental arithmetic, which anyone in any walk of life finds useful.

And that brings me to another point. They are never given the opportunity to apply information, think about it, discuss it, speak or write their opinions on it.

Understanding is totally missing from the equation.

It is my considered opinion that this process conducted over ten years, from Junior High School to university is the mind control that results in Japanese blind obedience to authority, whether the authority figure is a teacher or a nutjob like Shinzo Abe.

It's probably why so many Japanese people are in apathy about politics and will vote LDP unthinkingly. For many of them, the ability to make a decision has been knocked out of them in school.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites