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Five-way race to pick new prime minister begins

24 Comments
By Shingo Ito

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24 Comments
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There is something wrong with this system of letting the politicians select the PM. None of these guys could organize a recent rock fight on their own. The people ought to elect their leader for a set term. (Smack!) Sorry, I just got smacking back into reality. This is Japan.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Why don't they choose according to age (oldest first) and each can be prime minister for 10 months (the average). This will save time. Politicians will be able to concentrate on rebuilding the economy, Tohoku, and the strong yen and less time on exchanging bribes.... Oh, wait. Never mind.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Maehara's got to feel pretty burned... the guy had to get on all fours and go a-beggin' to Ozawa and Hatoyama, destroying any credibility he had among a number of voters, and then he gets the shaft. Envelope must not have been padded enough.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

"According to an opinion poll released by the Asahi Shimbun daily on Saturday, some 40% of respondents named Maehara as the suitable successor to Kan followed by five percent citing Kaieda."

Politicians don't listen to what the people want in this case: they go by who has been waiting in line the longest, along with who has rotated through the most positions (without qualifications), how many scandals they've been embroiled in (has to be AT LEAST one to even be considered!), who can commit gaffes best, flip-flopping (a must!), and how well they suck up to criminals.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

There is something wrong with this system in Japan.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm for a nuclear - free world...It's really important that Japan adopts an anti-nuclear policy, like Germany and Italy (even if I fear our government in Italy, could try to bring a nuclear plan again). If also Japan leaves nuclear energy, other major countries could do the same. But if Kaieda will become the next pm, I think it will be very difficult he will adopt an anti-nuclear policy. I read Maehara, instead, is closer to Kan's position about this problem, so I would prefer him than Kaieda. :/

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't know much about Kaieda, but I'd be disinclined to vote for him based on Ozawa's supporting him.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Electing Kaieda is the same as electing Ozawa! Japan will Never change. My only hope is their incompetence will result in Japan defaulting on it's massive debt and making me rich!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Smithinjapan I saw an " official" NHK on television last night with a 30 min panel discussion on the poll results. The poll sample was 1200 people out of a nation of 120000000. That's a lot of zeros difference.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I watched a discusion onTV yesterday in which Kano and Mabuchi participated... Kano is amazing , he has absolutely no ideas about anything , Fukushima, economy... his charisma and hairstyle are almost equal to PM Fukuda... I admire the sense o humour of the person that encouraged him to run in this contest.. hillarious.. Mabuchi on the other hand ...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Asagao: "@Smithinjapan I saw an " official" NHK on television last night with a 30 min panel discussion on the poll results. The poll sample was 1200 people out of a nation of 120000000. That's a lot of zeros difference."

I'm not exactly sure why you're addressing this post towards me; I never said the poll means anything, and I know that most if not ALL polls in Japan involve a very, very miniscule number of people. Doesn't change the fact that whether it's 1200 or 12,000,000 -- they have no say in who is chosen as PM by the DPJ, do they? Instead your would-be leaders look to criminals like Ozawa and their lap-dogs (Hatoyama).

1 ( +2 / -1 )

If Kaieda gets in, we should do some sort of protest. The gaijin will at least unite against the stain on politics that is Ozawa.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I wonder how long these Five lawmakers stooges will last once in ? I'm betting maybe 13 months :)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I just hope whoever becomes the next prime minister, he doesn't change faster than the sushies at the kaiten shushi restaurants.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

starting bid to be the next premier starts at 100,000,000¥. small envelopes filled with cash only please.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Best to pick the least corrupt out of the five and don't hope for too much!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

BoratLikeBarry, Even though I agree that there should definitely be some kind of protest (and i would participate) I don't think we'll get anywhere with only gaijin doing it. As much as I want to believe that gaijin should have a say in the government, the attitude is ''they're the ones who decided to live in japan so if they don't like something they should leave" I think it's the Japanese people that need to be standing up, its their country.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

To Alex80A: I understand well your position but remember two things, that are very important: 1) your country, Italy, has let down nuclear production. Good ! But don't forget your people, like in Germany and a lot of country in Europe, import a lot of energy - of nuclear energy ! - from France. It's not enough telling "hey, we don't produce any nuclear electricity" every oponent to this kind of energy MUST ban it from their country. Otherwise, that's called a big hypocrisy. 2) Japan is said to have started to THINK to REDUCE its dependance to nuclear energy. Good ! But everybody here knows what it means. Starting, in Japan, is another word for "muzukashii" (difficult) which often means "I do what I want". Secondly, the same country - Japan - that is supposed to aim to reduce its dependance to nuclear, have restarted with all its effort to sell its superb "nuclear technology" to third countries like Vietnam, Turkey and Lituania. Not good enough for them, but good enough for others...

As for the new prime minister, it will be another puppet, another Pinocchio who last six month or less. The big deal nowadays is to know who will control (and dispatch) the HUGE amount of money that has been prepared for the so-called "recontruction". Take my word, folks, a very big chunk of this money will end in the Jiminto and Minshuto politicians pockets in no time, as soon as they will have choose the perfect man of straw.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

So Kaieda has the backing of a crook (Ozawa) and a spoiled mama's boy who failed miserably as PM (Hatoyama). Unreal. The citizens of Japan have failed themselves miserably by allowing this abomination of a "democracy" to continue as long as it has. But, since most Japanese people are so inwardly focused, and learn little about other countries in school, they really don't know that there are better alternatives. Critisize China all you want for censoring news coming into the country that might be a threat to communist rule, but Japanese are in effect doing the same to themselves by not seeking greater knowledge about the outside world. The island mentality and shoganai attitude are simply killing Japan's prospects of having a meaningful future because they allow this kind of "election" to determine their leadership.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@hereforonow, well said. Japan is slowly tanking.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

your country, Italy, has let down nuclear production. Good ! But don't forget your people, like in Germany and a lot of country in Europe, import a lot of energy - of nuclear energy ! - from France. It's not enough telling "hey, we don't produce any nuclear electricity" every oponent to this kind of energy MUST ban it from their country. Otherwise, that's called a big hypocrisy.

True, I know it, and I agree with you. I'd like that my country banned that import. But I know that is impossible...Every developed country should change its own model of development, this is the only chance for a nuclear - free world, probably.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Whereas I'm French (so supposed to be a pro-nuclear) I'm with you, Alex80, for a nuclear-free world. The problem is to know if it's possible in the short term, in our all-technology world ?

There are a lot of new ways - probably on purpose still unused - to generate electricity, and before being able to efficently use it, everybody all over the world should not have another more urgent task than to find new means to drastically reduce the amount of energy required by our telephones, computers, air con, ovens, bulbs, elevators etc. Nothing should be more important than that, nothing should be rewarded by subsides or international prices. Reducing the spent of energy should be as important as the development of new ways to produce it. For it's no use to bale out when the breach is not sealed.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am surprised that Japanese have nothing to say here while non voters like me are expressing our concerns about Japan's future. The AKB48 got more attentions than this topic. Very discouraging.

What's going on in Japan? Do they care? It is their country.

Or maybe the rich, bureaucrats, politicians and media have been successfully controlling to keep J. public in ignorance just like slave owners did to blacks in US. I am just getting suspicious if Japanese oppressors are keeping good books and education away from J. public, so that they can keep power over them. I am sure you have been aware of the fact, J. education standing has been rapidly declining. It is pathetic.

I care.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Maehara will win if Noda pulls out early, or if the vote goes to a second round - the only reason Kaieda has the lead is that Kan's faction has two candidates, ex Liberal party factions back one candidate. Kan supporters have split their own vote.

Noda should step out of the race if he wants the Kan faction to win, but the problem is that he was the original Kan faction candidate and is personally backed by Kan. But Maehara will take his votes.

In the end of the day, it is all meaningless. The next leader will be a lame duck in a hung parliament until the next house election can break the legislative deadlock. The DPJ will breakup either then, or earlier triggering a new election.

I personally hope Maehara gets in.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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