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He learns nothing from Hatoyama failings: Shii on Kanfs policy speech

Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo harshly criticized the new Prime Minister for his refusal to learn lessons from the causes of the previous governmentfs failure, saying, gSince the previous Hatoyama government was forced to resign due to the anger of the general public, the new government should start its political efforts based on remorse for the failure. However, I found that Prime Minister Kan refuses to address the causes of the previous administrationfs demise.h Shii said this on June 11 in a press conference held in the Diet Building after Prime Minister Kanfs policy speech.

Regarding the issue of the relocation of U.S. Marine Corps Futenma Air Station, Shii pointed out that Kan is taking a eeso whatff attitude toward strong public anger concerning the DPJ governmentfs stand on this issue and that he will stand by the Japan-U.S. agreement in which Japan and the U.S. government confirmed the intention to build a large replacement facility in the Henoko-saki area. On the issue of eepolitics and money,ff Shii denounced Kan for his attempt to bring the scandal to a close on the grounds that the former prime minister has stepped down. The chair added that Kan totally failed to mention such issues as the removal of the discriminative health insurance system for elderly people aged 75 and older or the fundamental reform of the Worker Dispatch Law.

The Chairfs comments in the question and answer session are as follows.

(Overall impression)

The DPJ has been repeatedly chanting its slogan eeputting peoplefs livelihoods first.ff However, I was shocked to find that this phrase never appeared in his policy speech. I feel this is indicative of the new governmentfs direction of moving further away from public interest.

(Consumption Tax)

Prime Minister Kan called for a national debate that includes both ruling and opposition parties. The Prime Minister urged the Liberal Democratic Party to also join the discussion on a bill concerning the responsibility to restore fiscal health presented by the LDP to the Diet. The Bill clearly states that an increase in the consumption tax rate in the future is required, so there is the probability that we will see a coalition between the DPJ and the LDP demanding for a consumption tax hike.

(Main characteristics of the new government)

There are a variety of reasons for the failure of the previous government including the issue of the relocation of U.S. Futenma Air Station, gpolitics and moneyh corruption allegations, and matters concerning peoplefs livelihoods. Among them, what I think the DPJ government should realize is that it will reach an impasse if it maintains the position of subservience to the United States.

Rather than learning the lesson taught by public outrage, the Prime Minister has pledged his loyalty to the United States by promising that he will strictly follow the Japan-U.S. agreement. I am also concerned about the possibility that the government is moving in the direction of meeting the demands of financial circles to raise the consumption tax rate and further reduce corporate taxes.

- Akahata, June 12, 2010


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