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Abe's support rate at lowest ever

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Folks don't forget that Abe and his cronies got in with a dismal voter turnout the last time. Mandate of the people? Oh please.

People need to get out and vote and get rid of this guy and his gang. I wish; but I fear that there will probably be a low turnout again, especially among the young. If they took a serious poll they'll probably find that most people are disgusted with politicians, and don't think that anything will change. Therein lies the problem...

First priority should be to reduce the number of politicians in the diet, reduce their pay and perks and then you'll have only the people who really want to help the country in office. Then go into further cost cutting like all the LDP pork barrel projects, raise corporate and luxury taxes and then raise the consumer tax if necessary. Taxing the struggling Joe and his family, and the aging population living on fixed pension income is asinine. Bon bon Abe and others like him don't know, they just don't know because they've never known being born with a silver spoon in their mouth.

Sorry folks, just venting out loud, my future looks bleak if this guy stays and continues to run the country into the ground.

15 ( +18 / -4 )

No surprises here. His nickname is, passion fingers!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Yeah, I have a strong dislike for Abe for what he's done, his beliefs, and his future plans, but...

Who else is out there? I live here in Japan, I think I pay attention to local politics, and I haven't seen who the challenger is. Where's that strong, intelligent, rational speaking rival? Haven't seen him/her.

I can't just blindly say anyone else is better. I mean, really, anyone else still seems to visit Yasukuni and I haven't heard other economic plans. It's really disappointing.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

What is of note here is not the decline but rather the fact that Abe or any self-serving, power grabbing, big ego political leader gets high approval ratings at the beginning of his or her term. Why do people, who have so frequently been disappointed by these characters once again get their hopes up when a new talking head makes all kinds of smokescreen promises (Abenomics, for example) that just cover over the real workings of power and affluence?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

But more voters still say they will vote for Abe,

This must be a misprint, no one outside of Abe's home prefecture and district can vote for Abe. Must mean they are voting for the LDP.

I would love the PM to be voted in directly by the people, then we could really see who is popular or not.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I'm with you Harvey, who else is out there, the million dollar question. No guts, no vision, and misplaced priorities. The thing that really bothers me is that my mother's generation built the country from the ashes of the war and now they have to cut back even further on their already meager lifestyle because they have to live with these back asswards economic policies made by the rich. I guarantee you, Abe and Aso don't have a worry in the world.

7 ( +8 / -2 )

"more than a third of voters think his economic policies have failed"

Cripes, it's going to take decades, not just 2 years, to fix Japan's economic problems. And what was Japan's unemployment rate again? 3.6%? Not too shabby.

"People need to get out and vote and get rid of this guy and his gang."

And vote in who? The DPJ? Good grief...

-3 ( +4 / -6 )

Harvey makes an excellent point. Abe says he will resign, but of course he knows his party controls the majority of seats, and nothing will change. Some of the other partys have fell apart. The DPJ offers no alternative except to bash Abe. The corporations posting record profits want more of the same.

The only thing we can hope for is the much talked about reforms to take hold, otherwise its more of the same.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

And yet somehow Abe and Co. will pretend that an election is proof that his popularity is as strong as ever. As for Suga's comments, why is it he must 'make the voters understand' AFTER calling an election, or even 'make them' understand at all? I pray the LDP loses some serious ground in this election.

4 ( +8 / -5 )

30% of people polled by the Asahi said they felt Abenomics had succeeded

Or, put another way, 30% of those polled do not understand basic economics.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

This place really is the illusion of democracy. Disinterested populace combined with selfish politicians make for the perfect mix. Most people here are happy in the ignorance, being told what a great place Japan is. Compare this to Hong Kong, where young people took some action and took to the streets en masse. Well, I guess it will take a few more years of recession and perhaps a flirt with poverty for the Japanese to wake up.

4 ( +8 / -5 )

The idea that we have to vote for the lesser of two evils is BS, there are more than just two parties to vote for. Even if one of the other parties don't stand a chance of being voted in, people need to vote for someone they truly beleive in. Nothing will ever change (within the two main parties) unless people we send them a message that we DONT approve of what they are doing.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

If they took a serious poll they'll probably find that most people are disgusted with politicians, and don't think that anything will change. Therein lies the problem...

Exactly. So Japanese can blame their own apathy for the crap state of their country. Stop blaming China or foreigners and start blaming yourselves for doing nothing

9 ( +9 / -1 )

Inbred nepotism that seeks approval without doing anything to deserve any approval. Just machinations of a politburo that needs a ribbon on their suits to feel loved...pathetic and vile.

4 ( +4 / -1 )

Just machinations of a politburo that needs a ribbon on their suits to feel loved...pathetic and vile.

Yep, the difference in the political systems of Japan and North Korea is starting to narrow. When (not if) Abe wins this election, perhaps he will implement "love of your leader" classes

6 ( +7 / -2 )

No general election needs to be held until 2016, but Abe wants to solidify his mandate while the opposition is weak and before his support rates slide further.

solidify what mandate? The LDP took back control but they were not elected on the coat-tails of Comrade-Abe. They didn't win back control of the Diet, Minshuto and it's dysfunctional and incompetent Kan, Hatoyama and Noda administrations lost the election and the LDP was the only suitable alternative. There was no excitement in the electorate for Juminto what-so-ever and that feeling has only grown into dissatisfaction we see today.

Minshuto has had two years to pull their heads out of their a**es and have been acting like a snake with it's head cut off. Not ONE solid proposal just yada!-yada! and if you ask me, it will be a cold day in hell before they ever regain the trust of the Japanese people. Now I'm not saying they won't get back into the drivers seat because the way Comrade-Abe is driving he's ready to lose control and take himself and Juminto into a tail-spin and crash and burn and the weary-eyed electorate will see no other choice but to give the headless snake another chance.

I think that there is no hope for change in the Japanese political system, for Japanese democracy for that matter, until there is a change in the education of the youth in this country. If you raise children to be zombies and bob their heads up & down like yes-men then what can you expect and that seems to be fine with ALL those who are involved. Not until the youth learn critical thinking and are ALLOWED to disagree, to think outside the box and not be beaten into submission for doing so, will you see a change from the dismal situation we have seen.

12 ( +13 / -2 )

Although it's a pity we PR of Japan are not allowed to vote, it does leave me wondering just WHO we would vote for if we had the chance...? As far as I'm concerned, Abé is out of the running - but who else is there ?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I've seen quite a few elections in Japan but in a competitive field, none quite as farcical as this one. The majority either don't understand why or care that an election has been called. The PM is sliding in the opinion polls and his increasingly unpopular policies have dragged Japan into recession. While all this is going on, instead of going on the offensive, a spokesperson for the main opposition party says his party isn't ready to govern and another opposition party disbands 3 weeks before the election. It's an absolute shambles which is greeted with a sheepish grin, a shake of the head or a resigned shrug of the shoulders by the Japanese people I've spoken to. Nothing will change.

5 ( +5 / -1 )

Like so many aspects of J-society politics sucks!

Japan needs to re-invent its entire political system, current one is utterly dysfunctional.

As for leadership............in almost 25yrs I haven't seen any at all, the closest thing to a leader was just a fancy hairstyle!

Same as a few earlier posters I am sick of watching Japan mortgage its own future which is getting bleaker day by day!

3 ( +5 / -3 )

Good Abe, everything is fine. The only fail is that everything is now made in China.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

or a resigned shrug of the shoulders by the Japanese people I've spoken to. Nothing will change.

There you have the Japanese mentality to almost anything "difficult" in a nutshell

7 ( +6 / -0 )

I reckon he's called a snap election while there's a lack of policy debate from the opposing parties. That way, he's guaranteed a second term without contest. Kinda lame, but hey - that's politics in Japan. Abysmal voter turnout & a general indifference to politics.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is due to a political apathy in Japan.

People are giving up to participate in democratic process. They feel their votes will not change anything about their life.

Sad.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Cripes, it's going to take decades, not just 2 years, to fix Japan's economic problems.

Which Abe has spent the past two years adding to, by doing even more of the same things that messed the economy up in the first place.

And what was Japan's unemployment rate again? 3.6%? Not too shabby.

If you don't look too hard at it. Then again, a conservative determined to defend conservative politicians no matter what wouldn't.

"People need to get out and vote and get rid of this guy and his gang."

And vote in who? The DPJ? Good grief...

Fair point. I certainly wouldn't vote for them.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"that's politics in Japan. Abysmal voter turnout & a general indifference to politics."

Actually the "abysmal" voter turnout part is more recent. Voter turnout in Japan was above 60 percent--a high figure by Western (especially American) standards--in every postwar general election held from 1946 to 1996. In 3 of the last 5 general elections (since the year 2000) voter turnout has fallen below 60 percent into the 59 percent range: http://www.idea.int/vt/countryview.cfm?CountryCode=JP

What's truly shocking to see is how much VT dropped between 2009 (69.34%) and 2012 (59.67%). That nearly 10 percent decline is a HUGE drop in a country where the minimum voting age remained the same (i.e. if the voting age had been reduced from 20 to 18 between those elections, the resulting lower turnout wouldn't have been surprising since teenagers don't bother voting much in pretty much any country).

Voter turnout in the 14 Dec. election will almost certainly be well below the record post-World War II low of 59.02% in 2000. Abe is turning off a lot of people with this snap election decision.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Abe's support rate at lowest ever

Yen's purchasing power at lowest ever.

Not a coincidence.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

30% of people polled by the Asahi said they felt Abenomics had succeeded

Which could also be read to mean that 70% felt that they are a failure.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Watching the interminable parade of clowns on the news last night, one of them was saying that his was the only party that had the will to pass much-needed reforms. Exactly what these reforms were he didn't say, but given that his party is fielding less than 100 candidates there is no way he will ever get to pass anything, except guff.

The rest of them were just as hopeless. Why is it that the DPJ can only find candidates for half of the single seat constituencies? If they can't even organise 300 candidates for an election what does that say about their ability to run the country? Looking at their MPs, quality and ability do not form part of the selection process so what is stopping them finding another 150 people from the 100,000,000 or so they have to choose from? If they were organising a booze up in a brewery they wouldn't be able to find the beer.

Then Abe was on spouting incoherent nonsense. Something like "we need an election because we have a very good social security system".

Abe will win by default, not because he is any good, but because the opposition are utterly useless.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Although it's a pity we PR of Japan are not allowed to vote,

It would be nice, wouldn't it? After all we are paying taxes. But the simple fact is the politicians know we are far less apathetic than most Japanese people and might actually shake these hereditary bureaucrats from their cushy posts.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Abe's support rate at lowest ever

If Abe and the LDP are so disliked then some other party shall win. But, being one that doesn't listen to silly 1000+ person polls I will put my money on Abe and the LDP winning hands down.

No general election needs to be held until 2016, but Abe wants to solidify his mandate while the opposition is weak and before his support rates slide further.

This is exactly what the Left has wanted and now that they have their wish they are calling foul. Damned if you do and damned if you don't.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Letting PR holders vote doesn't make sense. The fact that they have only taken PR and not citizenship shows that their main allegiance is to another country and not to Japan. As such, they should not have a say in who leads the country.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The percentage of NJ who have naturalized is extremely low, I doubt taking citizenship and voting for any NJ cause would make any difference. Perhaps a naturalized NJ could rep for the PRs, but Ive only seen one Swedish guy who stepped up, seems his interest were more for the Japanese of the prefecture he represented.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Strangerland,

There are very good reasons why most of us PR holders wont take J-citizenship. The short answer is if we have to give up our current passport(ie no dual citizenship) well then is simply is no where near worth it to do so for most of us unless your for example a yankee making big bucks & therefore have to ALSO pay uncle sam taxes then it might push you to make that leap.

But without dual citizenship(a fairly common concept in this global world) we would be foolish to take the plunge. JAPAN needs to make itself more attractive, but seriously I just don't think the powers that be give a damn! And by that I mean they don't give a damn about THEIR own country, most of us know the foreigners are only tolerated & useful for collecting taxes since on average we likely make more.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Not judging those who have done it, and I do agree Japan has many great things to offer, but as a gaijin or NJ, there is no amount of money, no amount of pain or torture, that would convince me to become a Japanese. I identify with my country of origin, with all its problems. Its my DNA, the good and bad and I cannot change it, only supress it or act something I am not (gaijin clown). I am not considered a Japanese on any day of the week, and naturalizing would not change that. These are my own personal reasons. Some see enough good and potential in Japan to naturalize. To each his own. If Japan would accept foriengers as humans and not gaijin (outcast) and allow them the same rights and privilages, access etc and riddance of the concept and word Gaijin, then Japan would attract more foriegners who would naturalize. Otherwise its Japan for the Japanese, and the few resident NJ they tolerate

2 ( +2 / -0 )

There are very good reasons why most of us PR holders wont take J-citizenship. The short answer is if we have to give up our current passport(ie no dual citizenship) well then is simply is no where near worth it to do so

Exactly. Which means your allegience is to your original country over Japan. Why would Japan want to let someone with allegiance to another country have a say in who runs Japan?

Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't give up my citizenship for Japanese citizenship. But for that reason, I also see no reason for them to let me vote.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Ive seen the arguement by Naturalized gaijin that if you want to change things, then naturalize and vote, otherwise shut up or go home. The problem with that arguement is that if you naturalize, who/what do you vote for? The person shouting on top of the van with speakers is the same for every party. None have the NJ interest at heart as Japan is 98% homogenus country.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"Only 39% of those polled by the Asahi Shimbun daily in a poll conducted Nov 18-19 said they supported Abe, down 3 percentage points from a survey done earlier this month and less than the 40% who said they did not support him, as a stuttering economy has eroded his popularity."

Anyone here is surprisedabout the numbers given Abe's past track records ?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Last election, Akie could not stop Abe to back to politics.

So she campaigned for LDP candidates all over in Japan. DPJ was in power, then,

Her Domestic Opposition Party concept is very popular to female Japanese.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Whether naturalisation be a prerequisite to vote in a national election highlights the complexity surrounding diluting the rights and privileges of citizenship.

I sincerely hope that in stating/voicing a political opinion, this not be misconstrued as a complaint.

Politicians must be challenged to make good on there promises, either in office or opposition.

If non-citizens debating forcefully encourages citizens on a national level to register a vote, especially where voter apathy is inherently manifested in Japan youth, then that has to be a positive development, even if the whining can be a tad irritating.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

s USA voting law has nothing to do with Japanese votng law. Even, in USA, PR do not have voting right. ,

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why would Japan want to let someone with allegiance to another country have a say in who runs Japan?

Because such people may pay more in taxes than some Japanese citizens who do get a say in how that money is spent, but are too apathetic, stupid or generally worthless to exercise their rights responsibly. I pay taxes to the Japanese government, I work for that money and they're going to waste it in ways I object to no matter what country my "allegiance" is to.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Maybe Abe san is following in the footsteps of his great uncle Eisaku Sato, his 8 years in office was punctuated by two snap elections between 1964 and 1972 to secure a firm grip on the premiership, a cool $ billion of your hard earned just so Suga San can remind you the LDP can waste as they see fit.....ouch!!!!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why would Japan want to let someone with allegiance to another country have a say in who runs Japan?

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

It is nothing to do with income of gaijin who deo not make money like Ja[anese executives anyway. Or do they earn more than Toyota CEO?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It is nothing to do with income of gaijin who deo not make money like Ja[anese executives anyway. Or do they earn more than Toyota CEO?

I'm not entirely sure what that means, but some of them earn more, and pay more taxes, than some Japanese people who can vote. There's no one worth voting for in this election anyway. I'd never vote for the local LDP non-entity and the DPJ will probably just be fielding the same boring old hack who didn't get in last time.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Strangerland

Allegiance is a rather dated concept these days with many people moving around kids being born in different countries, Japan is rather primitive in its approach to all this sadly, if Japan did offer dual citizenship I would likely go for it, I love Japan & Canada where I was born, I like things about BOTH, I bitch & complain about things in BOTH, allegiance has squat to do with it!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

At the citizen level, allegiance could be considered a dated concept, but geopolotics is anything but static. There are many things I disagree with about Japan, therefore I would never consider becoming a dual alligeant citizen. We saw, during the tsunami, some interesting policy in action, and during that twilight zone of confusion, I must say I was proud not to be an allegiant citizen of Japan, but rather one who had the beautiful option of escaping.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Because such people may pay more in taxes than some Japanese citizens who do get a say in how that money is spent, but are too apathetic, stupid or generally worthless to exercise their rights responsibly.

Why would that make the government want to let non-citizens vote?

Also, foreigners salaries are generally smaller than average Japanese salaries, so that doesn't really hold up.

I pay taxes to the Japanese government, I work for that money and they're going to waste it in ways I object to no matter what country my "allegiance" is to.

Exactly. However, you can have your say - if you choose Japanese citizenship. You will then be able to vote in Japanese elections.

The Japanese have enabled a method for foreigners to be able to vote. It's just that most foreigners do not like the requirements for doing so (taking Japanese citizenship).

Allegiance is a rather dated concept these days with many people moving around kids being born in different countries

Maybe we don't like to think about it so much, but it does exist. I love Japan. It's my home, and my wife and kids are all Japanese. My life is here. But I would never give up my citizenship to become Japanese, because whether or not I like to say it out loud, I place a higher priority on my citizenship than I place on my allegiance to Japan.

Japan is rather primitive in its approach to all this

Actually, I believe that countries that do not allow dual citizenship far outnumber those that do. Japan is in the norm with this.

if Japan did offer dual citizenship I would likely go for it

Me to. But the fact is, it doesn't. And in not offering it, people have to choose which country they have an allegiance to - either Japan, or their home country. For people who aren't willing to fully commit to being Japanese, Japan is not willing to let them have a say in who runs the country. And that's entirely reasonable.

We saw, during the tsunami, some interesting policy in action

Such as?

during that twilight zone of confusion, I must say I was proud not to be an allegiant citizen of Japan, but rather one who had the beautiful option of escaping.

Many Japanese left at this time. There was no law saying they couldn't go.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Abe's support rate at lowest ever

No surprise here.

1)Japanese yen has been weakening and all imports including gas price have gone up.

2)That drives up all food prices to go even higher for Japanese consumers and then they are paying higher sales tax from 5% to 8%.

3)No National Nenkin pay raise ,unlike US cost adjusted SSI raise, for fixed income seniors while all national health care and long term care monthly premiums keep going up.

4) Everyone, except Japanese politicians, is all squeezed financially from both ends. Do they want poor people to starve and die? The sky has a limit.. Politicians need to listen up their cries. I am speaking up on behalf of these poor Japanese.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Only 39% of those polled by the Asahi Shimbun

My god. Asahi giving the lowest number to LDP cabinets again. What a surprise!!

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

First the problems of Japan are demographic not cyclical. Changes need to be made, like raising the age of pensions. Also companies should only get tax breaks if they raise their workers wages. The industries which should be encouraged should be cutting edge research...not construction. In addition to that... What's with this system where apples are around 100 yen (or more) each and cigarettes are only 420 yen a pack?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Support of Abe is low What was % when /Abe decided to be back when DPJ was in power? He was still too sick that Akie went all over in Japan for LDP candidates. LDP gained majority, It might happen again, Is there DPJ campaiigners as efficient as /akie?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Exactly. However, you can have your say - if you choose Japanese citizenship. You will then be able to vote in Japanese elections.

Can you give me one good reason why that should be the case, other than the deranged paranoid garbage that Japanese right-wingers come out with about Chinese and Koreans destroying Japan by using their votes to help China and Korea? Saying "because it's in the constitution" doesn't cut it.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

. However, you can have your say - if you choose Japanese citizenship. You will then be able to vote in Japanese elections.

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

You mean Nippon kokumin? citizenship is just city dwellers. Nippon Kokumin need Koseki, family registration with your ancestors names.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I mean 日本国籍. Which allows one to vote.

Can you give me one good reason why that should be the case, other than the deranged paranoid garbage that Japanese right-wingers come out with about Chinese and Koreans destroying Japan by using their votes to help China and Korea?

I already did. People not willing to take citizenship have shown their allegiance is to another country ahead of Japan. Therefore it is not in the best interests of Japan to let these people have a say in who runs Japan.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

If folks want to change how the Japanese citizens vote one must become a citizen of Japan and gain the right to vote. If one lives in Japan and wants to gain the right to vote without being a citizen then that person doesn't respect Japan or it's people.

You want the right to decide who the citizens of Japan want to lead them, then become a citizen! LEGAL Residents of Japan are just legal residents that's it!

So, you can't have someone else's cake and eat it too! Pay the price if you want to eat it, pay it!

Abe's support rate at lowest ever

So, rejoice Far Left, if this report is correct the CPJ, DPJ and SPJ will this elections hands down! So, bring out the bubbly and pass-out the cheap Communist Chinese cigars because December will be your new dawn.......Or will it? LOL

But more voters still say they will vote for Abe, who came to power in December 2012 when his Liberal-Democratic Party trounced the then-ruling Democratic Party of Japan in an election, than for the opposition

The Leftist media will always try and plug the holes in their stories by making things up!

The people of Japan will vote Prime Minister Abe and the LDP not because they have to. No, no and no dear friends. The people of Japan will vote Prime Minister Abe's back in power because everyone else in full of __!

The people of Japan know who they can trust and support and it isn't the central-Left, left or the far left! The people of Japan want justice, Liberty and stability so they will vote for the RIGHT group and not the wrong!

So stop trying to make excuses for why they won't vote the way you want, they are doing what they know is best for the future of Japan!

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

@Joe

If you're going to lecture us all on political rights them I suggest that you spend a bit of time learning the difference between "legal resident" and "citizen".

You appear to believe that they're the same.....

1 ( +2 / -1 )

People not willing to take citizenship have shown their allegiance is to another country ahead of Japan. Therefore it is not in the best interests of Japan to let these people have a say in who runs Japan.

It's a moot point. They don't have a choice of voting for candidates whose allegiance is to another country.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

They don't have a choice of voting for candidates whose allegiance is to another country.

Exactly. They can't vote for anyone. Only people whose first priority is to japan can vote.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The criteria for naturalization are provided in Article 5 of the Nationality Act:

1.Continuous residence in Japan for five years or more

2.At least 21 years old and otherwise legally competent

3.History of good behavior generally, and no past history of seditious behavior

4.Sufficient capital or skills, either personally or within family, to support oneself

5.Stateless or willing to renounce foreign citizenship

The Minister of Justice may waive the age and residence requirements if the applicant has a special relationship to Japan (for example, a Japanese parent).

The Nationality Act also provides that the Diet of Japan may confer Japanese nationality by special resolution to a person who has provided extraordinary service to Japan. However, this provision has never been invoked.

For many years naturalized citizens were required to adopt a Japanese family name

0 ( +1 / -1 )

StrangerlandNOV. 25, 2014 - 01:46AM JST

Exactly. They can't vote for anyone. Only people whose first priority is to japan can vote.

I know. So what? It completely misses my point and does nothing but repeat what you have already said. The fact is that no voters in a Japanese election have the choice of voting for candidates who will not act in Japan's interests as those candidates will and always should be Japanese citizens with the allegiance to Japan that is supposedly so essential. Well, if I had Japanese citizenship it wouldn't alter my voting intentions in any way whatsoever, which I suspect is one of the reasons that elderly conservative politicians don't want any foreigners voting, Japanese citizens or not - they have these elections neatly stitched up by ensuring a disproportionately high value is placed on the voters of rural voters who can be bribed into supporting them, while other people assume the elections will be foregone conclusions and remain apathetic to the point they just don't bother voting. It might wreck the whole neat arrangement if a whole load of foreigners suddenly starting voting for other candidates.

JoeBigsNOV. 24, 2014 - 10:57PM JST

You want the right to decide who the citizens of Japan want to lead them, then become a citizen!

No, I want people whose salaries I help to pay to be accountable to me. Right now, they use tax revenue for purposes I do not agree with, pay themselves colossal salaries, have various taxpayer-provided perks and generally behave like imbeciles who don't deserve one tenth of the money they get. If all you can say in reply to that is something like "if you don't like it become a citizen," save yourself some time and don't bother. That's all the anti-suffrage crowd ever say and it is, quite frankly, tedious.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The fact is that no voters in a Japanese election have the choice of voting for candidates who will not act in Japan's interests.

Sure they do. If there are candidates who are in the position of acting against Japan's interests - as it could be said Abe is (Abenomics anyone?) - then registered voters can vote for them. Registered voters can vote for whomever they want.

those candidates will and always should be Japanese citizens with the allegiance to Japan that is supposedly so essential

They should be. That doesn't mean they will.

But ignoring that, lets look at a hypothetical that shows how your position doesn't work:

Candidate A: Holds a position that Japan should get along with China better, and form free trade agreements with them. Further research shows that this is candidate A's only position, and they hold little opinion on anything else.

Candidate B: Holds a position that Japan should get along with China better, but with no free trade agreements. Further research shows Candidate B holds many refined opinions on the economy, crime, international trade, education, and many other points.

Now for the sake of argument, lets say that these two people are exactly as outlined above, with no further distinction necessary. Candidate B is clearly the better choice for the country, as (s)he has much knowledge (and lets say experience) on a wider range of subjects, that can benefit Japan. However both candidates have Japan's best interests in mind - Candidate A wants good relations with China, (s)he just doesn't have much else to say.

If a Chinese PR holder was allowed to vote, they would be more likely to vote for Candidate A, whom even though (s)he has the best interests of Japan at heart, isn't as good of a selection for Japan as the country, but is a better selection for China. Whereas someone with Japan's best interests at heart is more likely to choose Candidate B, who will be better overall for the country.

So it doesn't matter that all candidates have the best interests of Japan at heart. What matters is that the people who are choosing the candidate have Japan as their primary allegiance.

It might wreck the whole neat arrangement if a whole load of foreigners suddenly starting voting for other candidates.

It might, but first these 'foreigners' would have to become not foreign - by becoming Japanese. And if you would vote in the best interests of another country over your own, there is something wrong with you. Of course, being Japanese, you would have that right to have something wrong with you.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

But ignoring that, lets look at a hypothetical that shows how your position doesn't work...

That analogy might work better if the only foreign residents of Japan were from neighbouring countries. I'm British. I'm unlikely to find a pro-British candidate where I live.

It might, but first these 'foreigners' would have to become not foreign - by becoming Japanese. And if you would vote in the best interests of another country over your own, there is something wrong with you. Of course, being Japanese, you would have that right to have something wrong with you.

Did you accidentally or deliberately overlook what I said about not changing my attitude if I changed my nationality? Foreigners who became Japanese would still have a very different outlook to native Japanese, see what Japanese politicians were doing differently, and vote in a different way. It would, in the words of Sadakazu Tanigaki, "destroy Japan" no matter what, and even if I had a Japanese passport I would vote for the same candidates. You're basically suggesting discriminating against people based on their foreign policy views, which I think is no more acceptable than discrimination based on gender, income, religion or ethnic background.

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That analogy might work better if the only foreign residents of Japan were from neighbouring countries. I'm British. I'm unlikely to find a pro-British candidate where I live.

It was a hypothetical to illustrate the point. The countries are irrelevant. The point is that someone with an allegiance to another country other than Japan will choose the candidate that best addresses their points, which may not be the candidate that is best for Japan, even if that candidate has what they consider Japan's best interests at heart.

Did you accidentally or deliberately overlook what I said about not changing my attitude if I changed my nationality?

And you'd be a fool to not do so. Voting in the best interests of another country even though your only nationality is Japanese, makes no sense. Of course, having no sense would be your right as a Japanese citizen though.

Foreigners who became Japanese would still have a very different outlook to native Japanese, see what Japanese politicians were doing differently, and vote in a different way.

Maybe. But they'd be doing so as a citizen, not as a foreigner.

You're basically suggesting discriminating against people based on their foreign policy views

No I'm not. Stick to the facts.

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At Japanese e;ection, any Japanese has vorting right, (Constitution( This kind of election, you on,y choose candidates and vote. Nothing to do with foreign policy views.

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The percentage of NJ who have naturalized is extremely low

Perhaps having to surrender your original passport (and give up your nationality) may have something to do with it

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StrangerlandNOV. 25, 2014 - 11:55AM JST

No I'm not. Stick to the facts.

Provide some. All you have at the moment is hypothesis.

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Stereotyping all Japanese think same and all gaijins have different political view than Japanese?

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You're basically suggesting discriminating against people based on their foreign policy views

No I'm not. Stick to the facts.

Provide some.

I was of course referring to the fact that you were trying to attribute things to me that I wasn't saying. Nice attempt at a dodge though.

All you have at the moment is hypothesis.

And yet, you haven't been able to put forward an argument to effectively counter anything I've said.

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I was of course referring to the fact that you were trying to attribute things to me that I wasn't saying.

Foreign permanent residents of Japan shouldn't be able to vote without adopting Japanese citizenship because they can't be relied upon to vote in Japan's best interests, right? Even if the Japanese candidates they vote for think that they are? I call that discriminating against people based on their political opinions.

And yet, you haven't been able to put forward an argument to effectively counter anything I've said.

I'm not even remotely convinced by anything you've said and you can't seem to provide any evidence to back it up. If you're not going to do that then there really is nothing to discuss. All you have is hypothesis. I do not think it is acceptable for anyone to legislate on the basis of hypothesis, paranoia and scaremongering, or, as certain LDP-controlled local assemblies did prior to the DPJ coming to power, support suffrage for PRs and then come out against it when it looked as if the new government might actually make it happen. If people like that are against something, I automatically suspect that there must be something to be said in its favour.

Speaking of that, purely hypothetically of course and given that it's so wrong to let foreign PRs vote against the best interests of their country of residence, if Japan did suddenly allow foreign suffrage would you vote?

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Foreign permanent residents of Japan shouldn't be able to vote without adopting Japanese citizenship because they can't be relied upon to vote in Japan's best interests, right? Even if the Japanese candidates they vote for think that they are? I call that discriminating against people based on their political opinions.

Then logic isn't your strong point, is it. It's discriminating based on nationality, ensuring that those who are voting are voting in the best interests of the country. The actual opinions are secondary. For your hypothesis to be right, all people being 'discriminated' against would have to have opinions that are not in the best interests of Japan, while the fact is that some of those being 'discriminated' against would vote in the best interests of Japan even though they hold a foreign citizenship. Because of this, the discrimination is not because of their political opinions, it is to ensure that people who have an allegiance to a foreign nation over Japan are not taking part in the decisions that shape the future of Japan.

I'm not even remotely convinced by anything you've said

So?

you can't seem to provide any evidence to back it up.

Evidence? The truth is inherent in the argument.

If you're not going to do that then there really is nothing to discuss.

I don't feel the need to discuss it - I already know I'm right. You're the one who has a problem with it, and has been arguing against what I've said. If you don't want to discuss it, don't. If you do, I'll continue to point out how I am right.

I do not think it is acceptable for anyone to legislate on the basis of hypothesis, paranoia and scaremongering, or, as certain LDP-controlled local assemblies did prior to the DPJ coming to power, support suffrage for PRs and then come out against it when it looked as if the new government might actually make it happen.

Voting is a privilege, not a right. And you don't have that privilege. You may not think it is acceptable for the reasons you've listed above, but too bad for you - you don't have a say in the matter. If you want the opportunity to have a say, you can most definitely do it - by becoming Japanese and voting. If they did not even give you an avenue to vote, it could theoretically be argued that they are discriminating, but the fact is you can vote if you want to, you just don't like the requirements they have for you being able to vote.

Speaking of that, purely hypothetically of course and given that it's so wrong to let foreign PRs vote against the best interests of their country of residence, if Japan did suddenly allow foreign suffrage would you vote?

Of course - I would love to have the right to vote in this country. But:

1) I'm not willing to give up my citizenship to do so, because I have a higher allegiance to my home country than I do to Japan.

2) I could foresee situations where I would vote in my best interests, and these would not necessarily be in Japan's best interests.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

I don't feel the need to discuss it - I already know I'm right. You're the one who has a problem with it, and has been arguing against what I've said. If you don't want to discuss it, don't. If you do, I'll continue to point out how I am right.

PRs shouldn't be allowed to vote because they might not do in the best interests of Japan. Then again they might. They might vote for candidates who will act in the best interests of another country, but in a manner detrimental to Japan's. Then again they might not have the choice of voting for any candidates who are like that.

Oh sure you're right. Continue to point it out all you like if you like repeating yourself that much. I for one won't be reading. You have an emotive argument based on a principle, not a practical one based on facts or precedents.

Of course - I would love to have the right to vote in this country. But:

1) I'm not willing to give up my citizenship to do so, because I have a higher allegiance to my home country than I do to Japan.

That does not actually answer my question.

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Asahi, how about find LDP support rate in Japan? Then ask elected LDP members about Abe?

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Asahi, how about find LDP support rate in Japan? Then ask elected LDP members about Abe?

True, an updated opinion poll would be interesting. I think we'll find though, that most people don't actually support the LDP or are indifferent to them and too apathetic to vote in the election anyway because everyone else is just as bad.

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