August 20, 2005

IS THEIR SYMBOL THE DONKEY?:

New party braces for battle (Japan Times, 8/21/05)

With a snap general election set for Sept. 11, the conflict within the ruling Liberal Democratic Party over postal-service privatization has entered a new stage with the formation of a new party led by antireform old guards.

Here we call the antireform old guards the Democrats.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 20, 2005 8:56 PM
Comments

Their symbol is the puffer fish.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at August 20, 2005 10:35 PM

We note that the antireform old guards are the ones opposing privatization. Even in Japan, you don't need a weatherman to see which way the wind is blowing.

Posted by: Lou Gots at August 20, 2005 10:43 PM

For the benefit of your readers, oj, I thought I'd share some knowledge that I just gained concerning the 'postal-service privatization'. Turns out that Japanese post offices also function as banks. With a huge percentage of Japanese GDP invested (or saved) through 'post offices', this is indeed a big issue in Japan. Akin to social security 'privatization' here. Many of your readers probably knew this, but for those, like me, who were ignorant, I thought I'd pass this fact along.

Posted by: Fred Jacobsen (San Fran) at August 20, 2005 11:53 PM

Fred:

One of Japan's historic problems--it's one of the things that made their eclipse entirely predictable in the '80s--is that the massive savings you always read about are tied up in these unproductive accounts with virtually no rate of return. It's as if everyone in America moved their 401k and IRA holdings into passbook savings accounts.

Posted by: oj at August 21, 2005 12:01 AM
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