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参院選公示 政治と経済立て直しの契機に

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Jun. 26, 2010)
Election chance to put politics, economy in order
参院選公示 政治と経済立て直しの契機に(6月25日付・読売社説)

Many people must feel that this country's backbone is in danger of splintering.
 国の屋台骨が傾きかけている。そう感じる人は少なくないだろう。

The Democratic Party of Japan-led government, which replaced the coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito last autumn, has brought major confusion to the political arena, rather than ushering in a new era of politics.
 昨秋、政権交代を果たした民主党政権は、政治を変えるどころか大混乱を招いてきた。

The economy has been mired in deflation; glimmers of hope are few and far between.
 日本経済もデフレに足をとられ、なかなか明るい展望を見いだすことができない。

Official campaigning for the House of Councillors election kicked off after it was officially announced Thursday.  24日、参院選が公示された。

We hope each political party will present practical "prescriptions" that can cure the ills afflicting this nation, including policies that can get the economy back on its feet and diplomatic and security policies for restructuring the Japan-U.S. alliance.
 各政党は有権者の不安を払拭するためにも、景気を着実に回復させる経済政策や、日米同盟再構築に向けた外交・安保政策で明確な処方箋を示してもらいたい。

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Weighing pledges
 ◆公約の真贋を見極めて◆

Nine political parties have selected candidates in the election. The July 11 poll has become a real scramble for votes. Voters should carefully examine each party's campaign pledges to determine whether they are realistic, and its candidates to see if they are trustworthy.
 選挙は、9政党が名乗りを上げ、混戦模様だ。有権者は、各党が掲げた公約や擁立した候補者が本物なのか、その真贋を、しっかり見極めてほしい。

Former Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama lost the confidence of the public after being tarred by a money and politics scandal. He also severely strained this country's relations with the United States over the relocation of the U.S. military's Futenma Air Station in Okinawa Prefecture. As a result, he was forced to step down just over eight months after he assumed the premiership. He was replaced by Naoto Kan.
 鳩山前首相は、「政治とカネ」の問題で国民の信頼を失い、米軍普天間飛行場移設問題では対米関係を大きく傷つけた。その結果、首相に就任してから8か月余りで退陣に追い込まれ、代わって菅首相が登場した。

The candidates should first discuss what the two DPJ-led cabinets achieved and how they handled the responsibility of being in government.
 今回の選挙でまず俎上にのせるべきは、民主党内閣の実績や政権運営のあり方だろう。

The DPJ has been forced to revise the child-allowance program that headlined its manifesto for last year's House of Representatives election. Payments only started this month, but the lack of a revenue source has made the allowance untenable. Despite this, the DPJ has made no attempt to review and reflect on this and its other dole-out measures.
 昨年の衆院選の政権公約(マニフェスト)でうたわれた子ども手当などは、財源不足から、早速見直しを迫られている。とはいえ、これらバラマキ政策については、何の総括もなされていない。

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What's the difference?

The money scandals that tainted Hatoyama and former DPJ Secretary General Ichiro Ozawa remain far from resolved.
 鳩山前首相と民主党の小沢前幹事長の「政治とカネ」の問題も、解明には程遠い状態だ。

We wonder how--and whether--the Kan administration differs from the previous administration.
 菅政権は一体、前政権と何がどう違うのか。

The Hatoyama administration was characterized by populist policies, such as an array of dole-out measures and the manner in which budget screening was conducted; bureaucrat-bashing under the name of giving politicians a greater role in running the government; money-oriented politics fueled by huge sums of cash; undemocratic tactics to ensure there was no vocal objections to Ozawa's dictatorship in the party; pro-China leanings and keeping the United States at arm's length; and strong-arm Diet management by using the party's sheer weight of numbers.
 バラマキ政策や事業仕分けの手法にみられるポピュリズム(大衆迎合主義)、政治主導という名の官僚たたき、巨額の資金が動く金権政治、「小沢独裁」に沈黙した非民主的な党の体質、「親中国・米国離れ」志向、「数の力」を背景にした強引な国会運営――。

Kan was deputy prime minister and finance minister in the Hatoyama Cabinet. Can he truly break free from the nature of the former administration?
 菅首相は前内閣の副総理・財務相だった。前政権を特徴づけるこうした問題と決別したのか。

The DPJ should have sought a mandate from the people by dissolving the lower house for a general election. But because the DPJ avoided this option, it needs to fully explain these issues, otherwise voters will not be armed with enough facts to make an informed judgment on election day.
 本来なら民主党は、衆院解散・総選挙で信を問うべきだった。それを避けた以上、これらについて説明を尽くさなければ、有権者は判断のしようがあるまい。

The issue of raising the consumption tax rate will be a crucial test of the Kan administration's ability to deliver.
 消費税率引き上げ問題は、菅新政権の実行力の試金石だ。

Kan called for creation of a suprapartisan panel to discuss drastic tax reform--including the consumption tax--and hinted at raising the tax rate to 10 percent.
 菅首相は、消費税を含む税制の抜本改革に関する超党派の協議を呼びかけ、消費税率の「10%」への引き上げに言及した。

===

Debate sales tax
 ◆消費税論議を深めよ◆

Raising the consumption tax rate is an obvious step if one considers the nation's critical fiscal situation and ever-expanding social security costs. The LDP made the first move on raising the tax rate to 10 percent, the DPJ has followed. We applaud both parties for being responsible enough and having the stomach to squarely face this issue.
 国家財政の逼迫、社会保障予算の膨張を考えれば、引き上げは当然のことである。自民党が「10%」で先手をとり民主党が追いかけた形だが、引き上げを正面から論じようとする姿勢は、責任政党としていずれも評価できる。

Yet, the DPJ's policy flip-flop has been derided by some as an attempt to deflect attention from the previous administration's shortcomings.
 ただ、手のひらを返したような民主党の方針転換については、前政権の失政を隠すための「目眩まし」などと評されている。

Kan should carefully explain the reasons why raising the consumption tax rate is necessary and how the revenue will be used. He also should unveil a detailed plan for reforming the entire tax system.
 菅首相は、消費税率引き上げの理由と使途などを丁寧に説明し、合わせて税制全般の改革像を早急に提示しなければならない。

Political parties that have come out against raising the consumption tax rate need to show realistic alternatives for the sake of deepening tax system debate.
 消費税率上げに反対を表明している政党は、税制論議を深める上でも、現実的な「対案」を示す必要がある。

The framework of the DPJ-People's New Party coalition government may need to be redesigned depending on how the parties fare in the election. This could be a golden chance for political realignment.
 今回の参院選の勝敗は、民主、国民新両党の連立政権の枠組みに変更をもたらし、政界再編の契機になる可能性もある。

A handful of new parties that proclaim themselves to be a "third force" behind the DPJ and LDP have fielded many candidates. Their campaigns could affect the election success of the two major parties.
 民主、自民の2大政党の間で「第3極」を掲げる新党は、多数の候補者を擁立した。その戦いぶりは2大政党の戦績に影響を与えずにはおかないだろう。

The question on many observers' lips is whether the DPJ can snatch a majority in the upper house, which, when combined with its absolute majority in the lower house, would bring about a single party government.
 民主党は、衆院に加えて参院でも、非改選を含めて過半数を制し、単独政権を手中にできるか。

If the DPJ falls short of this goal, the next focus will be on whether it can secure a majority in a coalition with the PNP. If the two parties lack the seats for a majority, the DPJ might have to hop into bed with some of the "third force" parties.
 それが果たせない場合は、連立与党で過半数を確保できるかどうかが焦点だ。仮に、過半数割れになれば、「第3極」政党の一部などとの連携もありえよう。

The LDP has made no secret of its target of preventing the ruling parties from gaining a majority in the upper house. It apparently intends to put a brake on DPJ-led politics by bringing about a "divided Diet" in which both chambers are controlled by different political forces.
 自民党は、与党の過半数阻止を目標にあげている。衆参両院で多数派が異なる「ねじれ国会」として、民主党主導の政治にブレーキをかける狙いがあるのだろう。

What kind of administration does this nation need? Each voter should cast their ballot with this question firmly in mind.
 どんな「政権のかたち」が望ましいのか。有権者は、そうしたことも念頭に置いて、1票を行使することが求められる。

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Ideal upper house functions
 ◆参院のあり方も課題だ◆

The upper house, once dubbed the "chamber of wisdom," has long been ridiculed as the "chamber of political maneuvers."
 参院が「良識の府」でなく「政局の府」と言われて久しい。

The DPJ wanted to go into the election while the Kan Cabinet rides high in public support polls and closed the Diet session without extending it. An upper house plenary session to vote on an opposition-sponsored motion to censure the prime minister was not held. Such actions besmirch the upper chamber's once lofty image of being a home to "wisdom."
 民主党は、菅内閣の支持率が高いうちの参院選を望み、早々に国会を閉じた。参院では野党提出の首相問責決議案の採決をしなかった。これでは「良識」が泣く。

The DPJ, which became the largest party in the upper chamber following the previous upper house election, shot down bills and personnel assignment plans submitted by the then LDP-New Komeito coalition government to rattle the administration and threw the political situation into chaos.
 前回参院選で第1党になった民主党は、参院で政府提出法案や人事案を否決して、当時の自民、公明連立政権を揺さぶり、政治を混乱に陥れたこともある。

Some observers believe the authority of the House of Councillors, which has become too powerful, should be reined in. We urge each party to debate how an ideal upper house should function.
 参院が政局の行方を左右するようなことがないよう、第二院としては強すぎる権限を見直した方がいいとの意見もある。各政党は参院の在り方も論じ合うべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 25, 2010)
(2010年6月25日01時22分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2010-06-26 08:28 | 英字新聞

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