politics

Low voter turnout expected among politically apathetic youth

24 Comments
By Noriyuki Suzuki

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24 Comments
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I'm sure the LDP would love the status quo.

Those who don't bother to vote have no right to complain about the results and any fallout.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

My wife voted days ago which is done by going to the ward office.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"apathetic youth"

apathetic nation.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

And still some may wonder why Japan does so poorly in the world Happiness Index rankings.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

ifd66.....good point.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The youth who might be forced to serve 'their country'.......meaning Abe and Aso and other well-to-do .....silver spoons,and possibly give up their lives for the aforementioned oyaji.Yet they still can't be assed to vote........the mind boggles.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@pukey2

exactly - don’t vote, don’t complain !

5 ( +5 / -0 )

That's how they make 'em...

The corruption gets to them young, and in every corner of society. It's easier just to ignore it all and pray for tunnel vision.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

My grandfather used to say that the vote was the poor man's weapon.But people in Japan aren't poor enough to put it to use.Hence the constant poor turnouts.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I suggested to a young 17 year old teenager that it was important to vote.

He replied “I can’t trust what politicians say”

I then suggested that in a war that there could be a conscription

“yeah ok” was the noncommittal reply.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I was teaching at a college when this under 20’s voting was instigated and for two years after. Less than 40% of the college students voted. I asked the ones that did who they voted for and why. The standard answer was. I voted because my parents told me to and told me to vote for. Voter apathy is not only limited to the teens. Nearly 50% of adults couldn’t be bothered to vote either. Most adults don’t vote because they feel their vote is insignificant and would not make any difference to the result of the old boys club LDP stating in power as they have done for the better part of the last 70 years. I often wonder how election results would swing if voting was made mandatory in japan.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

What tangible reforms would the opposition bring about? Like much of the electorate, I have no idea.

Is there really any point in voting in Japan!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I often wonder how election results would swing if voting was made mandatory in japan.

It may not have a big impact as you think. In Australia voting is compulsory but you are not forced to vote for someone . There are people who just do not trust any politicians or want to stay neutual but do not want to pay the fine (Yes, you will be fined for repeat absent in voting at elections in Australia). They would do an 'informal vote' like leaving the voting paper blank, draw pictures or write things on it so their vote will not be counted.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

In all my classes at the university, I asked the students if they plan on voting. Only 1 student said yes. 1 student out of over 200 students.

I don’t blame them. We haven’t really heard of a party or candidate that speaks for the youth of this country.

The first election I was old enough to vote in was the Obama election and I only went out to vote because that election had a somewhat cultural significance for me.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The opposition parties need to have distinction from LDP. Who's for lower taxes? How about switching from all nuclear and fossil fuels to green by 2025? Less kanji? Deregulation? Mandatory politician retirement at age 65? Better pensions? Etc

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Can't say much. In the US both parties support never-ending undeclared (president) wars and defence budget bigger than china, russia, and others combined (are we getting ready to fight aliens or something?), among others. Tweedledee and tweedledum. Also more of a cult of personality. Joe Public: "I like him because he tells it like it is and has good hair." (Nothing on policies)

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I'm no youth but I don't really care about politics either. I especially don't like meeting friends or going to a gathering and people talk or complain about politics when there are far more fun things to talk about. I always thought politics was a no-go topic at parties. I guess times have changed.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

All these theories are just beating around the bush. If voting was indeed made compulsory J public would have a 100% turnout as they are trained since childhood to do as they are ordered by authorities .

But obviously J govt which equals LDP is not gonna move a finger since they created and maintain the current system in order to ensure their nearly perpetual re elections .

2 ( +3 / -1 )

A: "what's your hobby"

B: "sleeping"

A: "are you going to vote"

B: "no"

A: "wow, that seems so surprising"

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The country is heading towards the right direction and numbers speak louder than words or opinions. Japan's economy, relations with other countries, tourism are all increasing, unemployment one of the lowest.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

The lack of confidence in (whether they can) make the right political decisions 

Rephrase;; the lack of confidence in whether they can make any decision. They’ve never had to until now, why start?

This show was brought to you by the marvelous folks of the Ministry of ( Silly walks ) Education .

The “why bother?” generation.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

There are two different democracies: one is to get people's votes, another is to work for the people. Obviously, Japan is the democratic vote, not democratic work.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

yoshisan88July 20 07:16 pm JST

I often wonder how election results would swing if voting was made mandatory in japan.

It may not have a big impact as you think. In Australia voting is compulsory but you are not forced to vote for someone . There are people who just do not trust any politicians or want to stay neutual but do not want to pay the fine (Yes, you will be fined for repeat absent in voting at elections in Australia). They would do an 'informal vote' like leaving the voting paper blank, draw pictures or write things on it so their vote will not be counted.

Yoshisan - you are correct in stating that there are informal votes in the compulsory voting system in Australia, but currently those invalid votes average around 5%, with about half deemed to be accidental informal votes.

So together with non-voters (risking a fine) and informal voters, there is still close to a 90% dedicated vote in Australia. Compared with the last election here in Japan with a voter turnout in the low 50s%, there is no comparison. And I don't have info on the informal vote % here in Japan, which would undoubtedly decrease the valid vote %.

As I commented on another post on this topic, in a democracy it's the fundamental right and duty to be part of the governing process. Millions upon Millions have given their lives throughout history for their voices to be heard.

Now in the 21stC we have a huge % of people who can't be bothered.

Weak.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"The lack of confidence in (whether they can) make the right political decisions may be discouraging some young-generation voters who've seen swings in Japanese politics and know the power of voting," said Masahisa Endo, an associate professor of politics at Waseda University.

Nonsense ....they are just lazy / can,t be bothered and prefer to play on their smartphones, rather than worried about " not making a right decision" ...voting is not about right or wrong choice..its about one,s personal opinion.

Such a big swing was seen in recent election history in the 2009 lower house election, when the then Democratic Party of Japan wrested control from the Liberal Democratic Party. The subsequent 2012 poll saw Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's LDP dramatically return to power in a landslide victory.

All the new over 18,s were around 10 years old when DP won power ...dont think they gave a toss much about politics in Elementary / JHS

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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