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LDP still clings to old-style politics

The Liberal Democratic Party on January 24 held its first annual convention since it surrendered its ruling party position following the August general election. The party has not attempted to reflect on its past misgovernment.

The adopted new LDP policy offers a word of reflection only on its crushing defeat in the election. The party believes that it lost public trust because it had been arrogant as a long-standing ruling party and incapable of renewing its party management. It argues that its structural reform policy promoted together with its coalition partner Komei Party was justifiable even thought it increased poverty and widened social inequalities.

The LDP in the convention also revised its platform claiming itself to be a conservative party for progress and criticizing the Democratic Party of Japan-led new government for taking socialistic measures to undermine a sense of public self-reliance. The LDP is incapable of understanding why it was removed from power and what the people are expecting these days in politics.

This is clearly shown in the new platform which calls for an increase in the consumption tax although a tax hike will only impose more burdens on low-income earners and further increase poverty and social gaps; for the steady implementation of the military realignment plan of the U.S. forces in Japan although Okinawans do not want any military bases to be newly constructed in Okinawa; for the enactment of a law to send Japanese troops abroad without restrictions; for revision of the Constitution under the pretext of quickly responding to changing foreign and security situations; and supports visits to Yasukuni Shrine which glorifies Japanfs past war of aggression.

The LDP is intent on grilling DPJ Secretary General Ozawa Ichiro over his political funding scandal in the current Diet session. However, the LDP does not admit that political donations from corporations may be a breeding ground for corruption. As LDP Secretary-General Oshima Tadamori says, gCorporate donations are not an evil,h the party has never reflected on financial scandals involving itself.

If a political party is willing to truly listen to peoplefs demands, it should break away from the present aberrant policies subservient to the United States and large corporations.

The LDP, however, intends to adhere to old-style politics based on these regressive and backward-looking policies. With this, it will never be able to gain the public trust.
- Akahata, January 26, 2010

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