Japan from the inside out

Does opportunity knocking make a sound if no one’s at home?

Posted by ampontan on Monday, March 9, 2009

USUALLY, THE ONLY POLLS that interest me are the ones conducted on election day when the voters actually show up and make a concrete choice, but last weekend’s Kyodo poll is too informative to ignore. It found that:

  • 61.1% of the respondents think Ozawa Ichiro should resign his position as leader of the opposition Democratic Party of Japan. Fewer than half that percentage-point amount–28.9%–think he should stick it out.
  • 78.4% aren’t buying his story that he’s innocent of wrongdoing in the political contribution scandal involving a construction company. You know–the one in which his aide has already been arrested and those who funneled the money into his camp are singing to authorities. Polls do have a use after all, because we discover that 12.4% of the population are suckers enough to fall for it.
  • The support rate for the Cabinet of Aso Taro has climbed since the last poll all the way up to 16.0%. One hopes they don’t get a sudden nosebleed.
  • Their disapproval rating is still 70.8%.

They say even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in a while, but now the field is so covered with ripe, edible nuts that a political squirrel, visually impaired or not, can’t take two steps without falling over them.

And speaking of things falling, is it going to take a brick wall collapsing on the politicians of Japan to realize that the opportunity of a lifetime is theirs for the taking? A genuine reform coalition consisting of serious people from the ruling LDP and opposition DPJ could seize the day, and–I’m not exaggerating here–not only make history, but guarantee its members’ political futures for life by creating a new bloc. All they would have to do is to keep out the mudboat crew from different parts of the spectrum–Messrs Aso, Mori, Ozawa, Kan, Hiranuma, the brothers Hatoyama, the Kamei family, and others too numerous to mention.

But who’ll bet against the likelihood that they blow it?

No punters are lined up at that window, that’s for sure. The smart money is betting on form.

4 Responses to “Does opportunity knocking make a sound if no one’s at home?”

  1. Bender said

    I think the current situation is kind of like how the Bakufu fell. After several reform attempts, the forces against change led to its ultimate demise. The problem is, there’s no one else to take over this time.

    In the end, I think it’s the people’s fault.

  2. ampontan said

    Bender: Others have made the same observation. There is a quarterly magazine called Speak (I think), whose winter edition had an article that talked about the potential for another Meiji Ishin type breakout. It was in the local Kinokuniya, but I didn’t have enough money on me at the time. I went back to get it later, but it wasn’t there, and I can’t find the magazine on the web!

  3. Topcat said

    Rin Kagamine – Meltdown


    小沢融解【Ozawa Down】

  4. Trapped in Brazil said

    Ampontan, maybe the government bought all those editions of Speak 🙂 (seriously, I saw it happen here in Brazil)

    And I agree with Bender. If the people really wanted changes, things would be different.

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