Jul 9, 2014

Abe pushing Beijing, Seoul together

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe should realize that his historical revisionism and his new initiative in defense policy are further straining Japan's ties with its two closest neighbors.

Jul 8, 2014

Reducing overwork-related deaths

A new law that requires the central government to prevent deaths from overwork fails to describe precisely how that is done. Nor does it provide penalties for businesses that subject their workers to extremely long working hours.

Jul 8, 2014

Safety in off-label use of drugs

The revelation that a university hospital in Tokyo habitually has administered the powerful sedative propofol to children placed on ventilators raises safety questions about doctors' discretionary off-label use of drugs on patients.

Jul 7, 2014

Not a solution for mental patients

The health and welfare ministry's plan to renovate some wards of mental hospitals into residences to reduce the official number of long-term in-patients will only prolong the "former" patients' isolation from society.

Jul 7, 2014

Getting multiple tax rates to fly

The ruling coalition parties are trying to decide whether to introduce a reduced consumption tax on some daily necessities when the current 8 percent rate rises to 10 percent in October 2015.

Jul 5, 2014

A new map for the Middle East

The military advances of the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant have eroded the fragile equilibrium that held Iraq together, and may spur the Kurds to declare their own long-sought state of Kurdistan.

Jul 4, 2014

Interrogation recordings pinched

The scope of crimes in which a special justice advisory panel has recommended electronically recording the entire interrogation process for suspects appears too limited.

Jul 4, 2014

Watch progress on abduction issue

The government needs to watch North Korea to ensure that it follows through on a pledge to reinvestigate the fate of Japanese nationals kidnapped by North Korean agents, now that Japan has decided to lift some economic sanctions on the country.

Jul 3, 2014

Mixed picture for the economy

Although large manufacturers appear more optimistic about the course of the Japanese economy in the months ahead, the latest Tankan survey and other economic data show signs that growth could be hampered.

Jul 3, 2014

Questions about nuclear safety

Even as opinion polls indicate that most people would like to see Japan shed its dependence on nuclear power, the Abe administration appears to be trying to turn the clock back to before 2011.

Jul 2, 2014

Abe guts Article 9

With its Cabinet decision to allow Japan to exercise collective self-defense, the Abe administration has effectively gutted Article 9.

Jul 1, 2014

Say no to plea bargaining

The biggest problem with plea bargaining, which a special legislative panel has recommended introducing into Japan's criminal investigative process, is the possibility that a suspect will make false confessions for a lesser punishment or wrongly implicate a person who has nothing to do with ...