Commentary Jan 8, 2010

Public hopes fade to fears over the DPJ's capabilities

The Hatoyama Cabinet's approval rating is falling rapidly. In the Lower House election last August, people in Japan rejected the Liberal Democratic Party's long years of reliance on vested interests in favor of the Democratic Party of Japan for a change of government. From the ...

Commentary Dec 1, 2009

East Asian Community primer

Since taking office, Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama has attached importance to East Asia policy and has proposed, in Japan and abroad, his vision for creating an East Asian Community (EAC). The idea of promoting regional cooperation in Asia dates back to the Pacific Rim cooperation ...

Commentary Nov 12, 2009

Emissions cap-and-trade as policy?

Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, at the United Nations Summit on Climate Change held Sept. 22, stated Japan's pledge to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) 25 percent from 1990 levels by 2020, which is premised on "all the major economies" agreeing on ambitious targets. Other countries ...

Commentary Oct 3, 2009

Hopes and tasks for the DPJ

In a Yomiuri Shimbun opinion survey conducted just after the election, 72 percent of those polled had an optimistic view of the Democratic Party of Japan, reflecting a favorable popular response to the outcome of the Aug. 30 general election. Yet, in an Asahi Shimbun ...

Commentary Aug 23, 2009

Japan has plenty of work to do in transforming how it governs

The world is changing dramatically and political governance is at stake. The U.S. subprime loan fiasco spawned a global financial crisis and the world economy is assailed by a recession comparable to the Great Depression of the 1930s. At the financial summits of November 2008 ...

Commentary Aug 22, 2009

The decline of policymaking

I have misgivings about the decline of Japanese policymaking abilities. Politics, on the basis of democracy, should have the functions of making decisions on fundamental national policies, making budgets and laws, and settling financial accounts. Administration, on the other hand, is in charge of justly ...

Commentary Aug 21, 2009

Decay of Japanese politics

Japan's politics in recent years has lacked dynamism and incurred people's distrust. The purpose of politics is to present a vision for the nation's future, identify the systems and policies needed, and ensure the safety and prosperity of the nation and its people. Recently, ...

Commentary / World Dec 27, 2001

How to harmonize science and technology with humanity

The 20th century was the greatest century in human history thanks to the tremendous progress made in science and technology. The advancement of science and technology has given us a higher living standard, and the information-technology revolution has dramatically expanded our intellectual playing field. ...

Business May 28, 2001

Sea change in Japan's values

Japan is in the midst of change in its social value system. Ordinary people and business executives, successfully overcoming the two oil crises in the 1970s and expanding the nation's economic presence overseas in the 1980s, once held strong confidence in Japanese-style corporate management, a ...