Will nuclear restarts derail Abe? (Probably not.)

Say what you will about the LDP, but the party has been fairly open about its preference for nuclear energy and restarting Japan's idled reactors as soon as possible. The party may be about to get its wish. On July 8th, four regional power companies will apply to the Nuclear Regulation Authority to begin compulsory …

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How long will the Japanese people support Abe (and Abenomics)?

The most remarkable contrast between Abe Shinzō's tumultuous first term as prime minister in 2006-2007 and his current term is the degree to which Abe has been able to rely on significant public support. By this time in his first government — approximately five-and-a-half months after his inauguration — Abe's disapproval rating had surpassed his …

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The meaning of the Upper House election

On Thursday campaigning for the House of Councillors election scheduled for 11 July begins, as 440 candidates vie for 121 seats. (Michael Cucek has the breakdown here.)The significance of this election has been thrown into clear relief since Kan Naoto took over from Hatoyama Yukio as prime minister and head of the DPJ. What once …

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The Yosano-Hiranuma alliance of convenience

Michael Cucek has already pondered Yosano Kaoru's thinking behind his strange alliance with arch-revisionist Hiranuma Takeo — which has resulted in party that will supposedly be called Stand Up Japan! (the SUJ? As if Your Party wasn't bad enough) — but there's another factor beyond the electoral factors considered by Cucek.The alliance is a marriage …

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