Saturday, January 26, 2013

The election of despair6: very bad political culture 4

The parliament house of each country 、国会議事堂

< The parliament house of each country >

Last time, we looked at situation that people quickly abandoned the Cabinet that had been selected by the election.

It was much different from Japan that the situations of European and American advanced nations and a neighboring nation.

In this time and next time, I will explain the cause comparing with overseas situations.

Conspicuous election situations in Japan   (legislative elections)  

l      Dissipated political parties likely fog:  After the war, the political parties that exceed 50  was born and disappeared, and 14 political parties have seats now. These many will also disappear soon in several years.

l       The seats of political parties are reversed on each elections:  2009 years and 2012 years in the Lower House election, it was greatly reversed the standings between the ruling and opposition parties. 

l      Declining turnout of voters:  in the Lower House election, the turnout is 92% in 1917, 75% in 1955, and 59% in 2012. This shows decreasing trend.

l      Increasing independents of voters:  they are increasing from 10% in 1960s to 50% in 2012 years.

These weaken political power and become a serious obstacle for reorganizing the stagnant society and economy of Japan.

Has this problem arises in European and American advanced nations?

What are as the difference between Japan and the West, or its background factor?




日本の目立つ選挙状況 (国会選挙)

1.        降って湧く政党 :戦後、生まれて消えていった政党は50を越え、現在14の政党が議席を持つ。これらの多くもやがて数年で消えるだろう。

2.        選挙毎に大きく逆転する議席  衆院選2009年、2012年で大きく与野党が逆転した。

3.        低迷続ける投票率 : 衆院選191792%、195575%、201259%となり低下傾向。

4.        増加する無党派層 : 1960年代10%から201250%へと増加傾向。




 UK general election vote share and resultant governments、英国議会の政党得票率

< UK general election vote share and resultant governments(1950-2010), blue=conservative, redlabour, yellowliberal, grayothers >

Party support increasingly has dispersed widely during the past 20 years. When they did not unite in 2010, the handling of the government by them became impossible.

In past days, the ruling and opposition parties have changed as the two-party system in each about ten years.

Differing from Japan, the third party is growing throughout several decades.




 Historic seat distribution in the German Bundestag、ドイツ議会の政党議席
< Historic seat distribution in the German Bundestag(1949-2009), blackCDU/CSU, redSPD, yellowFDPgreenGreengrayothers >

In 1983 years, the Green Party made an advance into parliament. Since then it became 4 party system. And the left-wing party was added in 2005. Since then it became 5 party system.

Germany adopts a proportional representation and combines first past the post system with it.

From a bitter experience with the presence of small political parties that became a hotbed on which Nazis gain power, if new party did not exceed 5 percent of the votes, cannot acquire the seat for Parliament.

But the presence of small political parties is becoming remarkable also here.




 in Greece, voter support for parties and annual change in GDP 、ギリシャの政党得票率

< in Greece, voter support for parties and annual change in GDP

We look at Greek politics that is confused at a breath, depending on falling into the economic crisis.

The beginning was the change of power in October 2009, and budget deficit that was hidden by the old government was revealed.

It developed into the big issue that involved in EU from the middle of 2010.

13 political parties fought in the election in April 2012.

The radical leftist alliance that was small political parties became the second party that has 52 seats in the parliament.

ND (New Democratic) was a dominant party of 108 seats. The seats of the party are distributed much more to a higher rank of obtained votes.

There were formerly in a two-party system of ND and Pasok (The Panhellenic Socialist Movement).

As a graph shows, the GDP falls rapidly, and the approval rating for two main political parties fall at a breath, and caused the presence of small political parties.






trust of Greeks, May 2011、ギリシャ人の信頼感

< trust of Greeks, May 2011. bluetrustred=do not trust, top barfellow citizens,7thgovernments, 8thpolitical parties >

The government was not most trusted, and trust in fellow citizens also was small.

Rapid economic deterioration, subvention reduction and pension reduction by the tight budget, and the distrust of the government that caused it exploded at a breath.

This is a dangerous sign, but the election system of Greece that prevents presence of many small parties is useful barely.

Next time, we will analyze the background of this situation occurred in the world.





Friday, January 18, 2013

The election outcome of despair5: very bad political culture3

 The President, the prime minister

< The President, the prime minister of each country 

Last time, we looked at the situation where public opinion for nuclear power generation public opinion was not reflected in this election.

This time, we look at rapid declines of government’s approval rating that are one of the causes.

Comparing with overseas, we can check an abnormality of the election in Japan.




 Transition of government’s approval rating in Japan 

< Transition of government’s approval rating in Japan >

In Japan, in about half year, the people almost abandoned the Cabinet that they chose. And the Cabinet changed places in about one years.


 Transition of President Obama's approval rating 

< Transition of President Obama's approval rating >

This chart shows the approval rating of Obama who was inaugurated as the U.S. President in January 2009 during two and a half years.

The Republican Party got a majority of the House of Representatives by the election in November 2010.

As a result, his political managementbecame difficult, and his approval rating declined, but it regained soon.
Although President Obama's approval rating declined, if it is compared with Japan, it is small.




 Transition of U.S. previous presidents’ approval ratings 

< Transition of U.S. previous presidents’ approval ratings >

This chart shows that almost all U.S. previous Presidents have lowered the approval ratings sharply at the end.

For example, although the approval rating of W. bush declined to 30% from 85%, it took  six years and a half.



 Transition of The British party leader's approval ratings

< Transition of The British party leader's approval ratingsThe value was subtracted the disapproval rating from the approval rating. >

The Political power replaced the Conservative Party from the Labor Party in May 2010. And Cameron became the prime minister.

At this time, he united with the leader Clegg of the Liberal Democratic Party.

Miliband are the Labor Party leaders of the opposition party.

The final net satisfaction(approval rating disapproval rating) of previous cabinets in JapanAbe’s cabinet was 58%, subsequently 53%,50%,61%,and Noda’s it was 48%.

Comparing with it, the British party leader's approval ratings were only 20% after two years.




 previous French presidents’ approval ratings

<  previous French presidents’ approval ratingsa green line is approval, a red is disapproval.

In this chart, although the Presidents’ approval ratings declined a little during 5 and 8 years, it recovered at last half soon again.

They are passionate about executing their policy according to their ideas until approval ratings decline to 30 and 40 %.
But, in consideration of the next presidential election, they tried to retrieve support by popular policy.

This chart shows the result of them aiming.



 South Korean Presidents’ approval rating

< South Korean Presidents’ approval rating盧泰愚=yellow、金泳三=red、金大中=green、盧武鉉=blue、李明博=purple 

This chart shows transition of the Presidents’ approval ratings during five years in term of office.

At first, although the approval ratings are high, the last declined until about 20%.

Although this is the same as Japan, the period is from 5 to 10 times longer than Japan.

Moreover, Lee Myung-bak(李明博) and Roh Moo Hyun(盧武鉉) became unpopular within one year, but became popular again.




What is this problem?

The critical issue, since the Cabinet is not stabilized, is too short term to tackle an important policy.

The big cause that has caused it is national public opinion that is easy to heat and cools down easily.

The big one of the causes is national public opinion that is easily warmed up but just as easily cooled down.

As a result, the people accepted the short-lived the Cabinet and are content with scraps of policy.

Such political situation was not in the U.S., Britain, France, and South Korea.

These many are the single-member district system (proportional representation system is included).

Although many tops term of office are from 4 to 5 years by each countries, they have worked for longer ministry than it.

This difference may have rested with politicians, bureaucrats, mass media, election system, and society in Japan.

However, the people have to have a sense of crisis for this problem is the first step.

Next time, other political cultures are compared with the world.










Sunday, January 13, 2013

The election outcome of despair 4: very bad political culture 2

 a nuclear disaster area in Fukushima、福島原発周辺

< a nuclear disaster area in Fukushima:福島原発周辺の路線価調整率を参考 >

Last time, we looked at signs that the political situation got into a bog while swaying from side to side.

This time, we look back upon how the nuclear power plant problem influenced the political situation, and I explore the political problem.

In addition, since the election situation is complicated, I translate only the main point.

Japanese document and figures come after summary English document.




The evacuees of northeast 3 prefectures (Iwate, Miyagi, Fukushima) by the Great East Japan Earthquake are 320,000 now (2013/1/9).

There are 150,000 evacuees of the Fukushima residents who suffered nuclear power plant damage.

How was the election outcome of Fukushima Prefecture that suffered damage this much?

The residents awarded the party that support nuclear power generation a major victory.

Will they had desired breaking with nuclear power generation?

They chose the veteran candidates in preference to ensure earthquake disaster revival.

Because the candidates all said that they intend to break with nuclear power generation different from their party.

Regrettably, all nuclear power plant areas in Japan also all brought the same result as Fukushima.

In this way, the public opinion of Japan, opponents of nuclear power generation was 57% and Proponents of it was 19%, collapsed in spite of it.

Why was such a result brought?

Probably, it progressed as follows.

1.       Many candidates only desire vote-gathering power.
2.       Many lawmakers do not need to polish political capability.
3.       People will not put reliance on politics and do not expect the election.
4.       Most of few voters are likely to take advantage of a boom and continue to pursue their ever-lasting dreams.
5.       Therefore, many minor parties are born newly, and people's disappointment and the confusion continue.
6.       After all, Unreliable political parties and lawmakers occupy the large part of them.

Unless this vicious circle is severed, there will be no future of young men.

Next time, this Japanese political culture is compared with it of advanced nations.









< 福島県の小選挙区 >







< 新聞社が福島選挙区の立候補者に原発についてアンケートを行った >






< 衆院選の結果、原発立地選挙区のほとんどの議席は民主から自民に返り咲いた >







1.       多くの立候補者にとっては集票こそが政治生命を賭けるものである。
2.       多くの議員はその場しのぎで政治能力を磨く必要がない。
3.       国民は政治に信頼を置かなくなり、選挙に期待しなくなる。
4.       残念なことに、せっかく残った投票者の大半はブームを追い、チルドレンに期待し、青い鳥を追い続ける。
5.       よって小党乱立し、寄り合い所帯の政党が生まれ、失望と混乱が続く。
6.       いつしか頼りない政党と議員が頻出することになる。



Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The election outcome of despair 3: very bad political culture 2

選挙の顔、national election in Japan 

< December 16, 2012, principals of national election in Japan >

The regrettable point of this election didn't reflected public opinions. Furthermore, it is that the important point at issue has also disappeared.

The political party and the prime minister who lowered evaluation once came back. Again the same fault may occur.

This is a way repeated many times for the past seven years.

Six past prime ministers changed places about a year. But people did not have learning nothing from this occurrence.

Although the approval rating of their beginning was from 50 to 72%, it fell from 16 to 25% in each last stage.

This repeated replacement brought about the further disappointment and the discontent.

Peoples had stood on the verge of desperation and entrusted new expectation to the unknown political parties that came out suddenly.








What occurred as a result?

Japanese people once abandoned the longtime rule of a government and second-generation politician. And the change of government occurred. Nevertheless, that also revived.

A problem is that people does not reflect on the situation and doesn't put a brake on the political decline.

votes obtained and legislative seats、得票数と議席数の推移

< Transition of the number of votes obtained and legislative seats look at the greatly changed seats between ruling and opposition parties(red and blue in the graph), and an influence of a fragmented political parties (green in it)

The difference of the number of votes obtained between the two increased several times the difference of legislative seats. And it was repeated with large oscillation.

In the single-seat constituencysystem, it is surely becoming the sole winner.

This time, main political party fragmented, therefore invalid ballots largely generated, and the oscillation was further amplified.




< 得票数と議席数の推移 : 大きく振れる与野党議席と第三極の出現の問題が見える >




What is the problem?

l      Why do you allow the presence of many small parties? :  What can the lawmaker and minor parties that are inexperienced in practice and are not properly educated do? After all, many election pledges become waste paper at coalition.

l      Why do you make a fault of the single-seat constituency system stand out: The maximum purpose of this system was to make the change of government possible. The longtime rule of a government induces the decomposition, the collusive relationship and the stagnation, and with this situation the opposition party also surely becomes powerless. The two-party system that this system induces is for producing the lawmaker who works hard and has a feeling of tension. But in presence of many small parties, it becomes an opposite effect.


        なぜ小党乱立を許すのか : 実践経験の無い、まともに教育されていない議員や小党に何が出来るのか。所詮、連立時にその公約は反古になる。

        なぜ小選挙区制の欠点を際立てせるのか : この制度の最大目的は政権交代を可能にすることにあった。どうしても長期政権は腐敗、癒着と停滞を生む、それに伴って野党も非力になる。この制度は、二大政党制によって緊張感と切磋琢磨しうる議員を生みだすことにある。それなのに小党乱立では今回にように逆効果になる。

Look beyond the surface.

l      Social unrest:  When Japanese people are exposed to the social unrest, the people tend to take emotional group behavior. Without the people have judged its utility calmly, jump at the new prime minister or a political party. While repeating this, I am most afraid is that what is chosen is lost.

independents voting behavior、無党派層の投票行動

< independents voting behavior  political party to support by independents has reversed. hatching part in the graph shows independents. 

政党支持層と無党派層の推移、party supporters and independents

< Transition of party supporters and independents the independents increased remarkably. Lower and dark blue part in it shows independents. 

l      Social recognition:  Japanese people have the generosity of accepting the recovery to failed man. However, people don't consider whether cause of the failure is essential or it was corrected. This is one of the causes by which people repeat easily the same failure.

independents percentage according to age 、無党派層の年齢別割合

< independents percentage according to age : There are more younger persons among independents. A blue line shows independents. >

年齢別の投票率推移、voting rate according to age 

< Transition of voting rate according to age : It of elderly people is in the higher rank and also going up. Lower and red line shows twenties, upper and brow line shows sixties. 

l      Political consciousness: The long-term declines in voting rate and the long-term increase in independents are remarkable. If people with low political awareness increase in number, political party to support will change a lot at each election, and it will increase many small parties. This induces a situation that the intention of the elderly people whose voting rate is high reflects in politics. Therefore the countryside has an advantage. After all, the younger age of urban areas becomes indifference about politics increasingly.

Next time, the problem of a political culture will be investigated again.


        社会不安 : 日本人は社会不安に苛まれると、感情的な集団行動に出る傾向が強い。効用を冷静に判断せず、取りあえず藁をも掴む気持ちで、新規首相や政党に飛び付く。最も恐れることは、これを繰り返す内に、選択するものがなくなることです。

< 無党派層の投票行動 : 無党派層の支持政党が逆転している >

< 政党支持層と無党派層の推移 : 無党派層の拡大が顕著である >

        社会認識 : 日本人は失敗した者に対して再起を認める度量がある。しかし一方で、人々はその失敗原因が本質的か、是正されたかを考察することをしない。これが同じ過ちを簡単に繰り返す原因の一つです。

< 無党派層の年齢別割合 : 無党派層は若い者ほど多い >

< 年齢別の投票率推移 : 高齢者60歳代がトップでむしろ上昇している >

        政治意識 : 投票率の長期低下、無党派層の長期増加が顕著です。政治意識が低い人々が増加すると、選挙毎に大きく支持政党が変わり、また小党乱立に結びつく。これは投票率の高い地方の高齢者の意向が政治に反映する結果を生む。結局、都市部の若年層は、益々政治に無気力になっていく。