Saturday, December 15, 2012

Japanese Election: This Is Not Your Father's LDP

Probably not your grandfather's LDP either.

Liberal Democratic Party, which is neither "liberal" nor "democratic", has always been a party of convenience and compromise: pro-business as long as the party can control the business and receive donations, wearing "nationalism" on its sleeve when convenient, and pro-nuclear as long as citizens pay for it.

But now, it has a decidedly different look this time around. Many second-generation, third-generation LDP politicians have clearly started to believe in their own rhetoric.

An aerial photo by Mainichi Shinbun of the last night of the LDP campaign, in Akihabara, Tokyo, indeed shows Abe's LDP is very popular:

People on the ground reported they had never seen so many flags (link):

LDP's PR agency, whoever it is, did a clever job of selecting the main stage right in front of the Gandum Cafe (link):

I'm not too worried about the flags. After nearly 70 years of having been told, by your public elementary school teachers onward, that the Japanese flag is something that you should be ashamed of and shun, there is going to be a reaction to the other extreme.

And for the majority of Japanese to whom the nuclear accident doesn't mean a thing as they eat food from the contaminated areas in Tohoku and Kanto, all they care is about economy, economy, economy, even though they remain extremely ignorant about how the economy and finance actually work. To them, Mr. Abe's harebrained idea of forcing the central bank to print money to create just the right amount of inflation sounds very sophisticated and wise.

My tweets about what has happened in the US since the central bank started to massively intervene in the financial market fall on deaf ears, even among anti-nuclear followers. It's practically a religion in Japan that "deflation" is bad and "inflation" is good. They do not want to hear that under the monetary inflation caused by excess amount of mis-priced money in the system the intangible assets (like stocks) may rise but the wages may fall while the price of essential items like food and gas may rise.

The Japanese often talk about learning from the past and learning from the others.

They are good at talking.

The voting will start at 7AM on December 16 in Japan.


Anonymous said...

At least they talk about learning from the past and learning from others. Everyone else seems to go into denial and insist that the past doesn't matter and we should only think about the future.

But it shows that there's no point in learning from the past and others if you're not even learning the right things.

Anonymous said...

Aren't these the same guys that want to build a real life Gundam? They can't even field a small crapbot that can walk without human handlers help they should have had their rally at the Toshiba office cafeteria

Anonymous said...

Building a real life Gundam reminds me of the 20th Century Boys manga again. Reality is still stranger than fiction.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the LDP should be renamed the Friendship Democratic Party and everybody can start calling Abe "Friend"

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