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.

Jun 29, 2014

Rushing on collective self-defense

The Abe administration may adopt a Cabinet decision as early as this week to change the government's long-standing interpretation of the Constitution so that Japan can participate in "collective self-defense." Opinions from the public do not seem welcome.

Jun 26, 2014

Ensure stability of pension fund

It would be a mistake to view the Abe administration's shakeup of the Government Pension Investment Fund as a short-term shot in the arm for the stock market rather than as a way to stabilize the nation's public pension system.

Jun 18, 2014

New Komeito shouldn't cave in

New Komeito's most important party ideal — pacifism — is being tested by the Abe administration's efforts to allow Japan to engage in collective self-defense.

Jun 12, 2014

Dangerous turn in ODA policy

The Abe administration should give up on a plan to change the government's basic policy on official development assistance in ways that could see aid used for the armed forces of foreign countries.

Jun 5, 2014

Promotion criteria for bureaucrats

Under a new government personnel management system, the prime minister's office will take the lead in promotions, transfers and appointments of senior officials at ministries and agencies to eliminate ministry sectionalism and to tap people more in line with the administration's policies.

May 7, 2014

Easing work-hour regulations

Key government panels for the Abe administration are looking into easing work-hour regulations so that some workers could be rewarded on the basis of performance rather than hours spent in the office.

Apr 21, 2014

Abe turns back clock on education

The Diet has begun deliberations on a bill that would give local government heads greater leeway to intervene in education as well as reverse some features of postwar education reform.

Apr 17, 2014

Tread carefully on corporate tax cut

As the Abe administration considers cuts to corporate taxes as part of its growth strategy, it must ensure that it doesn't end up plugging the revenue hole by adding tax burdens to the household sector, already bearing the brunt of the April 1 consumption ...

Apr 16, 2014

Avoid setting dangerous precedent

The Abe administration is trying to kill — by a mere Cabinet decision alone — a constitutional interpretation barring collective self-defense that has been backed by Diet debates for decades.

Apr 6, 2014

A risky weapons-export policy

The Abe administration must consider whether its new policy that relaxes Japan's long-standing prohibitions against weapons exports could increase tension with other countries and thereby reduce national security.

Mar 27, 2014

Abe's pace on two right legs

by Jiro Yamaguchi

The current Abe administration finds itself with two right legs — one composed of traditional conservative forces that favor strong ties with the U.S. and another that takes anti-U.S. postures. Both jockey for influence within Abe' Liberal Democratic Party.