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It's a denial of democracy if just that many protesters would be enough to decide the will of the nation. The number of voters in Japan is 100 million. The protesters in front of the Diet would be not

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Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto, downplaying the effect of last Sunday's large-scale rally held in Tokyo to protest against controversial security bills that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe wants passed. Organizers said 120,000 people attended the rally.(Kyodo)

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If they want to waste a day protesting about something which is never going to change, more fool them.

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

"It's a denial of democracy if just that many members of the Japanese Diet would be enough to decide the will of the nation.

Fixed it for you.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

I guess the 500 or so who protested in favor of the bill are a better reflection then? Just trying to understand the logic here. I get the point that protests per se are not a means of deciding things like this, but when you have polls consistently showing the vast majority of those 100 million he purports to be speaking for being on the same side as the protestors and the government specifically trying to avoid any sort of democratic participation in the process (hence the lack of a constitutional amendment, which would require - gasp - a referendum) Hashimoto just looks like a pure BS machine when he says stufflike this.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

If Hashimoto is such a believer in democracy, why not have a national referendum on the bill so the people can vote on it? Thought not.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The world should stop referring to representative democracy as "democracy"; its more like elected hereditary Plutocracy (with very very few exceptions).

1 ( +3 / -2 )

rainydaySEP. 02, 2015 - 09:08AM JST I guess the 500 or so who protested in favor of the bill are a better reflection then? Just trying to understand the logic here.

That suggests there is some logic to find. Supporters of Abe's unconstitutional bill started out trying to wave off people who disagreed with them by saying the people didn't understand it. They never bothered to clarify what wasn't understood, so that never worked. Then they tried to wave off the opposition as lazy and selfish. That didn't work, so now they're trying to claim that their opponents are undemocratic, you know, even as their own law is widely agreed to violate the Constitution.

This is just another in the long line of "say anything to avoid having to admit that I don't know how to address my opponents' complaints".

4 ( +5 / -1 )

That suggests there is some logic to find.

Totally agree.

Actually it is interesting to see this unfold. Usually government responses to widely unpopular policies don`t go past the "expressions of regret that everybody misunderstands what we are doing combined with a promise to make everyone understand correctly while not showing any willingness to change said policy" phase. This one as you note has gone on to the "villainize your opponents in addition to expressing regret that they don't properly understand what you are doing" phase. Wonder where it will go next.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The recent survey concerning support for Abe says otherwise since the result was 46% for 40% against.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It is not the will of the nation which is being expressed by Abe. He and his party were not elected to change the consitution and militarize the country, but to turn Japan around from it's economic decline. I don't think that Abe's actions are in any way democratic, it looks like he has done the politically common "bait and switch" scam upon the people. But that is what Japan and it's people get in return for their apathy.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

hashimoto, pls just GO AWAY, your NOT helping!!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

katsu78SEP. 02, 2015 - 11:56AM JST

That suggests there is some logic to find. Supporters of Abe's unconstitutional bill started out trying to wave off people who disagreed with them by saying the people didn't understand it. They never bothered to clarify what wasn't understood, so that never worked.

Actually, on the Net they do explain it. However, the government cannot say some things out loud, such as saying "Why would Americans or anyone help us when we won't even try to help them, when we say we'll let them be killed by Chinese missiles to defend two lousy lines on a piece of paper?"

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

How many citizen signed petitions do you need to bring a petition to Parliament.. 100k sounds like a pretty good number

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The Japanese people have exactly what they deserve. Just as most other "democracies" have what they deserve.

Hashimoto is right in the sense that 120,000 people, while impressive, does not win elections.

Some numbers from the 2014 elections:

Total voting age population: 102.6 million Total persons voting: 53.3 million Voting percentage: You do the math....

Some other points to remember:

The voting system weights the votes of voters in rural districts higher than in urban districts, where the voting is much more heavily weighted to the LDP.

The ineptitude of the opposition parties does not provide the voters with any real alternative to the LDP.

Who is the real opposition party anyway? There have been so many new parties formed from old new parties. new old parties, new new old parties, etc., that it all gets rather confusing. And so many of them really are just derivatives of the LDP.

What does it all mean?? Hashimoto may sound arrogant and dismissive, but the reality is that he is not wrong in his assessment. He knows all of the points I listed and he knows that the average Japanese voter does not care about this and/or certainly won't vote based upon this and, even if they did, there is no ability for them to vote for anyone with any credibility and/or to do so in sufficient numbers to make a difference.

His statement is basically one big GFY to the protestors.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Unfortunately he's right.

The apathy that the Japanese have to vote speaks louder in a democracy than their enthusiastic protests

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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