May 20, 2014

Reconsider Japan's space program

As budget pressures become more competitive, it will be up to Japan's experts and taxpayers to consider what approach will best serve the nation's needs for space exploration — not bureaucrats and politicians.

May 19, 2014

Hope beats fear in India election

While the prospect of a strong Indian government led by Narendra Modi appeals to those who decry the horse-trading that has sapped the energy of previous Delhi governments, others worry that Modi could prove to be a Hindu nationalist who ratchets up tensions in ...

May 18, 2014

Boosting the female workforce

The Abe administration is pushing for a review of household tax and social security benefits under the belief that current rules discourage many women from participating in the labor force — even as the nation faces a steep decline in its working-age population.

May 18, 2014

Protecting the water cycle

The Diet has enacted a basic law on the water cycle, but the law falls short of meeting local governments' demand to legally define underground water as common public property.

May 17, 2014

Mother's Day belies realities

Japan considers itself one of the most advanced countries in Asia, yet socio-economic conditions for mothers still rank far below levels in Europe and even Singapore and South Korea.

May 17, 2014

Casino gambling bad bet in Japan

Letting the gambling industry operate in Japan would be a terrible bet, as the bulk of gambling tax revenue would be offset by expenditures for treating addictions and fighting crime.

May 16, 2014

Abe takes aim at Article 9

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe says he will try to change a long-standing constitutional interpretation so that Japan can exercise the right to "collective self-defense." His move would gut the war-renouncing Article 9 of the Constitution without going through the amendment procedure.

May 15, 2014

Short-circuiting Thai democracy

Thailand's opposition may be successful in its rear-guard battles against a democratically elected government, but these "victories" are Pyrrhic, resulting in economic instability.

May 13, 2014

Get serious on interrogation reform

A Justice Ministry legislative proposal for dealing with criminal investigations and trials evades the duty of electronically recording all interrogations of criminal suspects while broadening the range of tools that investigators may use.

May 12, 2014

Making drug studies objective

To ensure neutrality in the process of conducting clinical studies of drugs already on the market, the government needs to expand support for medical researchers so that they don't have to depend on funds from the pharmaceutical industry.