New security bills threaten constitution: experts


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Still, violating or distortng the constitution has not stopped numerous previous laws and practices. The constitution has always had the appearance of a guideline with equal status to "custom", which can be whatever anyone wants it to be. And the Supreme Court judges charged with the constitution's protection have largely failed in their duties, usually by fudging any issue before them.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

How long before the people stand up to this?

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The constitution provides that the Diet is the sole law-making organ(Article 41). It also provides that the Supreme Court is the only organ that has the right of judicial review(Article 81). The sholars should obey the costitution.

-16 ( +4 / -20 )

Well, sunrise, it is not against the constitution to have a point of view. Yet. But in reality many laws are made by the bureaucracy and rubber-stamped by the Diet and have been for decades. There are also parallel guidelines issued by the bureaucracy that appear to have the force of law, or are regarded by custom as laws. And the Supreme Court fails repeatedly to judicially review. So, does it matter what the constitution says?

4 ( +8 / -4 )

I believe the expression

the constitution imposed by the United States after World War II

is about the view held by Mr. Abe. While it is a historical fact that our constitution is heavily influenced by then GHQ, its pacifist principle is upheld by Japanese people since. Born and lived in Japan for good part of the 70 post-war years, I can say the constitution is doing more good for Japan than bad.

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as opposition to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s pet project grows

Second time in two days to see the re-interpretation of the constitution referred to as Shinzo Abe's "pet" project. However, recall reading an article (can't remember who wrote it) at the time of his first comeback election win stating that re-interpretation / revision of the constitution was in fact THE project. It was Abenomics that was actually the "pet" project, a PR campaign / stunt dreamed up by Abe's backers to make it look like something was being done about economic problems, with the real objective of Abenomics being to give him time and space to pursue the real project. Thought that was a pretty cynical take on things at the time, but not anymore.

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“What’s scary is that should the political practice of violating the constitution go unchallenged, this country could become something similar to North Korea,” he said.

Coming from a professor emeritus, no less. This isn't some foreign opinion. This is a very slippery slope

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It is farcical, if not dangerous, to assume that checks and balances will be maintained because the SDF can only be used “unless the situation infringes directly upon Japan’s security.” As the world has seen far too many times in the last 100 years, this kind of ‘policy’ is open to a wide range of interpretation by politicians who can be swayed by various interest groups, etc. This is how Hitler justified his invasion of other countries. Abe's evil scheme threatening to lead Japan into the ditch while serving his own narrow nationalists interest. Abe's unilateral action violates the principle of democracy, which states that a matter as important as this should be subject to a national referendum. Abe had none, because he knew 65% of Japanese citizens opposed Abe's brand of collective defense.

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If Abe was in office 10 years ago with this new constitution in place when Bush and Blair was on the warpath, would Japan have fought in Iraq and Afghanistan to "protect and support" our allies when their soldiers were retreating?

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The Supreme Court may accept a case when the Court deems that it involves an important issue concerning the construction of laws and regulations, as the final appellate court upon a petition to do so. In criminal cases, the reasons for a final appeal are limited to those involving a possible violation of the Constitution, misconstruction of the Constitution or conflicts with the precedents of the Supreme Court or conflicts with those of the high court's in the absence of Supreme Court precedents. The Supreme Court, however, may accept a case when the Court deems that it involves an important issue concerning the construction of laws and regulations, as the final appellate court, upon a petition to do so

Both Setsu Kobayashi, professor emeritus of Keio University, and Yasuo Hasebe, Professor of constitutional law at Waseda University testified to parliament this month that the bills are unconstitutional.

If there is a violation of the constitution and both these eminent Professors have stated so, then the judicial power vested in the Supreme Court can adjudicate and both Hasebe and Kobayashi know this, petition the court!

Where is the DPJ, Japan second largest political party? Why were DPJ politicians not leading the thousands of Japanese rallying in protest?

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However, it has proved deeply unpopular among academics and Japan’s public, who are deeply wedded to the commitment to pacifism.

Yes, here it is again. Always the PACIFITS holding Japan back. I mean, Japan is only the 3rd biggest economy in the world. To get back up to number 2 and be more cool, I agree with Abe that this pet project is important for all the nation and not just some insane obsession by a madman.

Look, in a previous post I quoted the definition of democracy from the Merriam-Webster online dictionary but here it is again.

Full Definition of DEMOCRACY


a : of or relating to centralized control by an autocratic leader or hierarchy : authoritarian, dictatorial; especially : despotic

b : of or relating to a political regime based on subordination of the individual to the state and strict control of all aspects of the life and productive capacity of the nation especially by coercive measures (as censorship and terrorism)

Here in Japan, we are in a great democracy and ABe is helping us to realize our full potential by gently easing us into a more aggressive and warlike mindset. It's ok! He will prove to be a great leader of men and sometimes maybe even women!

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

When I fly into Kansai Airport I see a large banner in Japanese that basically states that there are anti terror measures being put into place;fingerprinting and picture taking being just some of these. Never mind that the only 'terrorist' attacks have been from Japanese nationals.Nevertheless,it seems that there is a concerted effort to place a modicum of fear into the Japanese psyche. History is full of examples where power elites set the stage for war and finally engineer a defining event that pushes us into bloody conflict. The people of Japan are being set up for this .....

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Abe's illegal legislation should be struck down by the supreme court, otherwise the constitution will be dead and buried.

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The constitution provides that the Diet is the sole law-making organ(Article 41). It also provides that the Supreme Court is the only organ that has the right of judicial review(Article 81). The sholars should obey the costitution.

huh? i don't get this. if they were to follow the constitution then the ldp shouldn't even be having this conversation since it clearly renounces all aspects of war. and most importantly, the gov't is a body for the people, and the people have spoken: no change to article 9.

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This who pantomime highlights just how stupid Abe and his cabal of loons are. In any functioning democracy (which Japan claims to be), the first rule when shanghaiing an academic to give your policies gravitas is to make sure that you pet professors sing from the song sheet. Obviously, the current LDP didn't get that memo.

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Hi HongoTAFEinmate, I have a suspicion in a fit presumptuous arrogance Abe San and his LDP government neglected to ask..

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Yes, Abe and Taro "Did you know my grandfather was Yoshida Shigeru?" Aso do arrogance very well, policy not so much.

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I really cannot see this proposed legislation lasting the full course, either the opposition parties or the judiciary will pull the rug from under the governments feet.

I am concerned about changes to article 12 which will remove civilian checks and balances, if history has taught us a lesson, between 1935 and 1942, it led to the tragedy of Sino-Japanese War, and participated WW2.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Japan's government seems like the US and the UK's. Grabbing for more power, contrary to constitutional law. I'd add Canada to that list, but, its constitution is already rigged to give the government power to void rights and freedoms.

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But unable to muster the public support to amend the constitution imposed by the United States after World War II, Abe opted instead to re-interpret it, and proposed legislation that allows the military greater scope to act.

I still don't get this. Obviously, amending the constitution is provided for. But what is this "re-interpret" nonsense? Does that conceptangauge even appear in the Constitution or has the concept that the Cabinet has this kind of authority been upheld by the Japanese Supreme Court? Or is this just typical Abe/LDP gamesmanship?

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Is the Japanese Pacifist Constitution written in the late 1945 relevant today in the midst of hostile and aggressive nations? North Korea and China are the potential aggressors of Japan. Get real Japanese pacifists; Japan is facing very serious military threats and unless PM Abe is successful in amending/updating the defence and security aspects of the Constitution, you people will have to "kow-tow" to Red imperialist super power. Japan must show it is prepared to face any aggressor together with its allies with the US as an important partner.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

Yes! Advil said it wright!

The REASON countries like North Korea and China are backing down is because Abe is showing them who's DA BAAWS! He certainly has nothing but the Japanese peoples best interest at heart. What is this nonsense about him being an obsessed rightwinger enthralled with a personal family dynasty, nationalisim and his own interests?

none of this is true. He is the patron saint of selflessnes

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

These security bills allowing the use of 'collective self-defence', legal experts propose threaten the pacifist constitution, cut through to the very concept of opposition in a representative parliamentary democracy, or the lack of.

The 2014 poll had the DPJ opposition winning just 73 seats. Astonishingly in a further 110 single member districts, the DPJ failed to field candidates to run against the LDP.

The catastrophic result, is Abe's LDP government ruthlessly dominating the agenda. With a two-thirds majority courtesy of coalition partner, Komeito, any functions of democratic opposition to carry public opinion in cases of controversial legislation being waved through without disruption or debate of opposing views is plain for all to see.

Re-interpretation is a fundamentally absurd proposition, a contradiction to the constitution and the spirit of article 9 and open to a series of legal challenges when the security of the nation requires Government to act decisively.

Hi advill, to sway reluctant public opinion in a referendum, will require a huge political leap of faith and trust, just not achievable in the current climate of skepticism and uncertainty.

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People automatically think that China and North Korea will attack Japan , but that isn't true . if the constitution is revised Japan will have to join in wars made by the US , I don't want Japan to lose it's peaceful image.

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Washington, which for 70 years has been the guarantor of Japan’s security, has welcomed the move, which to many foreign eyes seems relatively uncontroversial.

Not when it's being proposed by a nationalist, unrepentant government

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Those against the proposed "security bills" make much more honest and logical sense than the small minority that makes leaps of logic in favoring them. Didn't over 300 constitution scholars last week conclude that these bills are wrong.. compared to only 12 who marginally support Abe's confused logic?

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New security bills threaten constitution: experts

What is the credibility of these so-called, "experts"? To be an expert at anything, you must consistently display proficiency and aptitude in whatever field you claim to be an "expert" in.

Throw the experts into the think-tank. What will they come up with?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Throw the experts into the think-tank. What will they come up with?

That Mr Abew is violating the constitution perhaps? But then again, he did grow up sitting on his grandad's knee (Nobusuke Kishi) so we shouldn't be surprised

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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