Fiscal policy in the eyes of the Japanese public

It increasingly seems that if Abe Shinzō is going to remain in office, he will need to retain the approval of the Japanese public, and that if he is going to retain the approval of the Japanese public, the Japanese public will need to reap some of the benefits from the purported revival of economic …

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Professor Hatoyama holds forth

Before entering politics — the family business — Hatoyama Yukio was a fledging academic, a Stanford-educated engineer. His background as an academic is often on display when he delivers set piece addresses. He has a penchant for abstraction, for drawing upon broad principles and shying away from the nitty gritty details of policy. This tendency …

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Has Aso made up his mind about an election?

In recent days Komeito has upped the intensity of its disapproval of the government's calling a general election following the passage of its proposed stimulus package.The LDP's junior partner is still concerned about an overlap between the general election and the Tokyo prefectural assembly election in July, but it has added a new argument against …

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The LDP’s window of opportunity

The Aso government and the LDP, confident due to polling numbers trending in their favor, are publicly mulling the timing of the next general election, raising the possibility that the government will not wait until the end of the current Diet term in September before calling an election.Sankei reports that members of Aso Taro's cabinet …

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Is the government running out of options — or out of options already?

The political system is gearing up for a debate over the government's 15 trillion yen stimulus package that could decide the timing and the outcome of the next general election.Kan Naoto has indicated that if the government is open to revising the plan, the DPJ will cooperate to smooth its passage. What choice does the …

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The Aso government’s need for speed

Ozawa Ichiro, marking the third anniversary of his leadership of the DPJ, gave a long (and rambling) press conference at DPJ headquarters to mark the occasion.In the midst of Ozawa's winding and evasive answers to questions pertaining to North Korea's rocket launch, political strategy, the coming general election, and economic policy, it is hard to …

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