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Flavour of the Month Addendum – Just How Many Flavours Does Bad Come in?

The very recent election of a mayor for Tokyo is such a many-layered example of bad.

The Pro-nuclear candidate Yoichi Masuzoe won an election, based on one of the lowest turnouts ever, to become mayor of Tokyo. This is a candidate that was backed by Abe’s ruling party, a candidate whose candidacy was considered a test for the public support for resuming of nuclear power plants in Japan, not to mention his sparkling commentary back in 1989 about women:

“Women are not normal when they are having a period … You can’t possibly let them make critical decisions about the country [during their period] such as whether or not to go to war,”

Yes, he is a special candidate that represents the current leadership of Japan and their interests all too well. Naturally, some Japanese women have reacted by declaring a Lysistrata-style strike, declaring that any man that votes for Masu-man gets no sex.  Just take a good look at what kills all the fun nowadays:

nuclear jackass

The opposition, aided by former PM Koizumi, split, thus losing the election:

Mr Masuzoe’s closest rivals were lawyer Kenji Utsunomiya, 67, who came second, and former Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa, 76, who was backed by popular fellow former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.

(Shades of Roh Dae-woo).  The most fitting summary of all this, I think is from the Japansubculture guys who think:

Once again, Japan has shown us that with enough voter apathy, a compliant media, and the connections and funding of the nuclear industry, that any middle-aged asshole guy can be the leader of one of Japan’s largest city-states.

Considering the Right-wing, historically myopic, PR-impaired leadership that is Japan today, I guess this guy will fit right in.

About the author: Psst, want to buy some used marble cheap?

  • redwhitedude

    Mother nature had a hand in low voter turn out. The message to Abe is “whatever you say”.

  • Sumo294

    The far majority of the Japanese are not right wingers. What is happening in Japan is economic fatigue (the people are broke) and rampant unhappiness. The left in Japan are out of ideas–tax more and stimulate the economy is not working and the general populace is starting to think about other ideas. Right now they are sounding out the right of center platforms–but even if the populace would wildly embrace right wing ideology–it would take more than twenty years to reengineer laws to implement support for a new center right democracy. Japan alone could not project any real power without committing more than five percent of its GDP to defense. Since, Japan cannot decouple itself from American foreign policy in the foreseeable future–only a tactical nuclear strike from the Norks or the possibility of South Korea fully committing to a nuclear stockpile could push Japan to build its own nukes.

  • DC Musicfreak

    The best analysis and sharpest writing on Japanese politics, economics and diplomacy you’ll find on a blog is Shisaku, linked over on The Marmot’s (massively outdated) blogroll. He has two posts on the Tokyo election – one noting that the creepy WW2 fabulist Kamogami got 610,000 votes on Sunday.

    I hate speaking ill of the dead, but I’m relieved Ampontan isn’t adding misinformation and vitriol to the fire during this frustrating and frightening Abe era.

  • DC Musicfreak

    China is the main driver here, Sumo.

  • Sumo294

    Japan feels America will deal with China–if they did not believe this–it would be a different country.

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