Sunday, 14 December 2014

Japan Decides, 2014: The view from Abiko

Japan decides today. Well, just over 50 percent of the nation decides today, given expected voter turnout. Actually, just over half of eligible voters decide. Probably. Well, the ruling party cannot lose tomorrow as there aren't enough opposition candidates running to beat the ruling party. But this state of affairs, where around 17 percent of the population actively chooses the leaders it gets will be hailed as a decisive mandate by the victors who can then do whatever chaps do when they have a mandate. Mandate by the way is the name of a gay dating magazine from the 70s. Google it, Our Man doesn't want that in his NSA file.

Anyway, thought he'd show you the view from Abiko. Sakurada, the ruling party pol, will win. Ota, the former Ozawa gal, will come a distant second and Onozato of the Japan Communist Party, will get the wooden spoon. Sigh.

Here's a good piece by bunker favourite Richard Smart on why folks should care about the election. Here's a good piece in the Guardian about issues and such, arranged in blog- and Moses-friendly Top 10 format, but here's Our Man's take:

If predominant political trends in Europe and the US can be explained as socially left wing, financially right (well, kinda), in Japan it's largely the opposite: the LDP is socially right wing but financially left. Kinda. But that's a characterisation with as sloppy brushstrokes and inaccurate detailing as Our Man's caricatures. Viewer discretion advised.

Want proper Japan political analysis? Go to Shisaku.

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