Alex K.T. Martin


Alex K.T. Martin
Alex K.T. Martin is a Tokyo-based journalist and senior writer at The Japan Times, primarily focusing on feature stories. Previously he was a Tokyo correspondent for The Wall Street Journal.
Jul 22, 2010
DPJ's Hosono shoots down talk of leadership change
Despite the Democratic Party of Japan's setback in the July 11 Upper House election, DPJ Deputy Secretary General Goshi Hosono defended the administration of Prime Minister Naoto Kan on Wednesday.
Jul 15, 2010
Kokumin Shinto woos SDP
Social Democratic Party leader Mizuho Fukushima confirmed Wednesday that Kokumin Shinto (People's New Party), the ruling Democratic Party of Japan's minor coalition partner, has approached the SDP in a bid to form a new parliamentary group.
Jul 12, 2010
Gloomy DPJ focuses on renewal
The mood was grim Sunday at The New Otani Hotel, the Democratic Party of Japan's election base in Tokyo, as the reality set in that the ruling coalition had lost its majority in the Upper House.
Jun 25, 2010
Kan right to debate sales tax: Edano
Democratic Party of Japan Secretary General Yukio Edano brushed off concerns that a sales tax hike could dampen consumer spending and defended DPJ President and Prime Minister Naoto Kan's decision to invite debate on the unpopular levy just weeks before election day.
Jun 25, 2010
Kan wades deep into tax hike fray
Despite misgivings in his own party, Prime Minister Naoto Kan has pledged to raise the 5 percent consumption tax in a few years to fund snowballing social security costs and avoid a fiscal crisis like the one that engulfed Greece.
Jun 24, 2010
Parties focus on economy, taxes
With the campaign officially kicking off for the July 11 Upper House election, political parties are weighing in on rebuilding the economy and government finances, hoping their platforms will translate into votes.
Jun 17, 2010
Rocky Diet ends; just 35 bills passed
The first ordinary Diet session under a Democratic Party of Japan-led government wrapped up Wednesday, kicking off a campaign season that will culminate with an Upper House election next month.
Jun 17, 2010
DPJ's Diet handling gets low marks
Last Christmas, then Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama led the Democratic Party of Japan into its first ordinary Diet session, telling reporters he wanted to give the public a "sense of hope" as a gift and vowing "tangible results" to improve their livelihoods.
Jun 15, 2010
Kan urges Diet to unite for fiscal fix, draws fire
Prime Minister Naoto Kan called Monday on the opposition camp to back his plans to launch a joint panel to discuss ways to restore the nation's battered finances, but he also came under fire.
Jun 12, 2010
Kamei resigns over postal reform bill
New Prime Minister Naoto Kan's government had its first casualty Friday as financial services minister Shizuka Kamei stepped down in protest because the Diet session won't be extended to act on his controversial pet bill to scale back the postal system privatization.
Jun 11, 2010
Weak poll may spur tieup with LDP defectors: Edano
The Democratic Party of Japan may reach out to other parties if it fails to gain a majority in next month's Upper House election, the new DPJ secretary general hinted Thursday.
Jun 9, 2010
Don't count Ozawa out of the scene yet
When Naoto Kan announced his candidacy for the Democratic Party of Japan presidency last week, he told reporters DPJ kingpin Ichiro Ozawa "should remain silent" for a while after quitting as secretary general, considering how his political money scandals helped speed the downfall of Yukio Hatoyama as...
Jun 5, 2010
New Prime Minister Kan to 'rebuild trust'
Naoto Kan was voted in as prime minister by the Diet on Friday, shortly after the ruling Democratic Party of Japan elected him as its new president.
Jun 4, 2010
Kan front-runner to replace Hatoyama
Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Naoto Kan is expected to win the Democratic Party of Japan presidency, get voted in by the Diet as prime minister, then form a new Cabinet — all on Friday.
Jun 3, 2010
DPJ poll worries to persist
Back when it was still in the opposition camp, the Democratic Party of Japan used to criticize the then ruling Liberal Democratic Party for its frequent shuffling of prime ministers, without an election.
Jun 1, 2010
Hatoyama finds SDP joining his foes
Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama's administration found itself in an increasingly tight spot Monday after the Social Democratic Party bolted from the ruling bloc and then turned around and signaled it would side with a no-confidence motion against the Cabinet.
May 27, 2010
SDP walks a tightrope as it flirts with leaving coalition
When Mizuho Fukushima was re-elected president of the Social Democratic Party in December, she promised to pull the SDP out of the ruling coalition if the Futenma air base was relocated within Okinawa, as called for in a 2006 agreement with the United States.
May 20, 2010
JCP chief rates his U.S. visit a big success
Japanese Communist Party Chairman Kazuo Shii said Wednesday his recent visit to the United States was a success and he was able to convey the JCP's vision on nuclear weapons and Japan-U.S. relations.
Japan Times
May 18, 2010
Yoshimoto Kogyo: Entertaining the nation
One would have to be a hermit, literally shut off from all media, to avoid exposure in Japan to the comedians and other entertainers managed by Yoshimoto Kogyo Co., the nation's oldest and arguably most powerful entertainment agency.
May 15, 2010
LDP policy platform targets economy, DPJ
The Liberal Democratic Party revealed a draft Friday of its platform for the summer Upper House election, promising economic recovery and growth while vowing to end the mistakes of the Democratic Party of Japan-led government.


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