September 25, 2006

IT'S NOT THE FIRST ELECTION THAT MAKES YOU THIRD WAY:

Japan's unorthodox reformer steps down (Bennett Richardson, 9/26/06, The Christian Science Monitor)

Japanese banks have been overhauled, employment has recovered, and the economy is in its second-longest expansion since World War II. Land prices are rising more than 10 percent a year in central Tokyo, the number of marriages is up, and the old factional style of politics that hamstrung effective decisionmaking in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) is increasingly a thing of the past.

On the flip side, Koizumi's more muscular foreign policy and his visits to a shrine dedicated to the nation's war dead have lost Japan much goodwill around Asia. Wage disparities have increased, regional economies are still struggling, and a population decline has yet to be reversed.


Plop him down in the line that includes Thatcher, Clinton, Gingrich, Blair, Howard, Bush, Harper, Cameron, etc. and he's utterly orthodox. It's only being a leader in Japan that makes him seen unusual. And it would be surprising if the system there doesn't revert to sclerotic form.

Posted by Orrin Judd at September 25, 2006 6:12 PM
Comments

"Wage disparities have increased." With the exception of the dear leader, there is not much disparities in North Korea. Should we all strive for that?

Posted by: ic at September 25, 2006 9:05 PM
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