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What would you do if you were Prime Minister of Japan?

by Melanie Burton

Edwin Webb
English teacher, 24
There’s too much money being spent in the outer prefectures on concrete. I would focus on promoting tourism. I’ve seen too many natural features defaced with concrete.

Kaori Yanagida
Student, 21
Reforming the post office is a very good idea. I would talk with the people again, so I would do the same as Koizumi, except I would definitely not raise the cost of hospitals for salaried workers and old people by cutting insurance coverage.

Vincent Walsh
English teacher, 38
If I were him, I’d probably listen to Japanese people’s opinions more because I don’t think he does. For example, 80 percent of people were against the Iraq war and he went in anyway. He does what he wants to do.

Katherine Garner
English teacher, 23
I’d enshrine in legislation an order that all dogs are not allowed to wear coats during the summer — essentially Cool Biz for dogs. And for big dogs, they are not to be adorned with pretty ribbons — it’s simply demeaning.

Phil Lenke
Yoga teacher, 32
I’d stop doing everything the Americans tell me. I’d apologize for the war more to China and Korea and look into paying more compensation. The troops in Iraq would be out straight away.

Jacob Goldfarb
ESL teacher, 25
I’d use my private jet to tour the country. I’d start in Hokkaido and work my way down to Kyuushu. For lunch, I’d eat the most expensive seafood meal I could find, and I would speak to a certain embassy and tell them to get their act together.