Even if the state secrets bill becomes a law, it will be important for people to continue grass-roots movements to oppose it and to prevent from being used to curb their right to know and to express their thought and opinions.
The disparity in vote value between more and less populous Upper House constituencies has grown so wide that it is undermining the principle of equality under the law with regard to the representation of voters's will.
Could Iranian officials have a point when they sometimes respond to accusations that Tehran is seeking a nuclear weapons capability by not-so-subtly nodding to the one country in the region that does have nuclear weapons: Israel?
In most democracies, government spending on free health care and anti-poverty programs would be seen as part of the normal political process, but in Thailand, it is regarded by many rich opponents of the current "Thaksin" administration as a form of bribery.
In his recent criticism of public demonstrations near the Diet building by those opposed to the secrecy bill, Liberal Democratic Party Secretary General Shigeru Ishiba validated concerns that the bill could be used to silence citizens who express certain political opinions or demands.
It's the duty of Tokyo Gov. Naoki Inose to give a convincing account of how he came to borrow ¥50 million interest-free "for personal use" from the scandal-tainted Tokushukai hospital group last year.
Voters' defeat of incumbent mayors in Fukushima Prefecture should flag the Abe administration that they not happy with the slow pace of reconstruction from the nuclear disaster in March 2011.
The award of the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought to the 16-year-old Pakistani girl Malala Yousafzai is welcome, as it will promote schooling for the huge number of children worldwide who are deprived of education opportunities.
Flip-flops in government explanations of the contentious bill for protecting state secrets — now under deliberation in the Upper House — suggest that the government itself does not have a clear idea of how it plans to prevent the arbitrary designation of information as ...
The Upper House has enacted a law that establishes a Japanese version of the U.S. National Security Council. But there's no guarantee the NSC will contribute to the government's making rational security and diplomatic decisions.
It will take much more than an end to the rice paddy area reduction policy coupled with subsidies to turn Japanese agriculture into a growth sector as envisioned by the Abe administration.
The labor ministry is planning to tighten and enforce the country's guidelines for harassment in the workplace. Included is a reconsideration of office conversations between people of the same gender.
The government's plan to make sure full-time regular employees take their paid holidays has apparently failed. A survey shows that workers claimed even fewer holidays in 2012 than they did in 2011.
The six-month accord that Iran struck with six Western countries on Nov. 23 gives it a chance to dispel international concerns about its nuclear program while improving the lives of its citizens.
The fact that China's new air defense identification zone overlaps that of Japan, Taiwan and South Korea is not "illegal" and is perhaps part of a strategy to level the legal playing field vis-a-vis Japan's claims in the disputed area.
It's not only most Israelis and acolytes of AIPAC in Washington who hate the interim nuclear agreement signed by Iran with the U.N. Security Council's P5-plus-one. So do the Iranians who support a hard and hostile line toward the Great Satan.
The interim nuclear agreement between the Great Powers and Iran is creating a lot of anxiety for people who support the deal, because not much proof has been offered to suggest that it will actually work.
Confronted with a worldwide, systemic economic crisis, isn't it time we rethink the foundation of mainstream economic theory and move to change the way we measure the quality of life for mankind?
The battle in Thailand has been redrawn into one between ethical rule centered on the monarchy as the face of moral authority against the supposedly corrupt Yingluck Shinawatra regime.
The Japanese public supports Prime Ministe Shinzo Abe's bid to defeat deflation and stand up to China, but it's not with him on the secrecy bill.
Given the nexus of issues that tie vital U.S. interests to Japan's reform process, Caroline Kennedy, the new U.S. ambassador to Japan, could well prove to be a crucial link between the countries.