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首相国連演説

(Mainichi Japan) September 29, 2008
Prime Minister Aso needs to consider the weight of his words
社説:麻生外交 発言の重みを自覚すべきだ

Prime Minister Taro Aso delivered a speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Thursday. He is the first Japanese prime minister to address that body in three years.
 麻生太郎首相が25日(日本時間26日)、ニューヨークでの国連総会で演説した。日本の首相の国連総会出席は3年ぶりのことだ。

There is a reason that Prime Minister Aso chose the U.N. Headquarters as the venue for his first official act as prime minster. The leaders of U.N. member countries deliver speeches there annually around this time of year, but during the past two years, Japan's two previous prime ministers, Shinzo Abe and Yasuo Fukuda, stayed away because the timing conflicted with the launch of their own administrations.
 就任したばかりの麻生首相が初仕事の場として国連本部を選んだのにはわけがある。国連では毎年この時期に加盟各国の首脳クラスが一般討論演説を行うが、日本の首相は昨年も一昨年も出席を見合わせた。安倍、福田両政権の発足と時期が重なったためだ。

If Japan's prime minister had missed this opportunity to address the U.N. for three years in a row, even though Japan attaches great importance to that organization, it would have had repercussions for Japan's international stature. This thought probably occurred to Prime Minister Aso, so although it is unusual for a prime minister to address the U.N. before delivering his own policy speech to the Diet, his decision to give priority to the U.N. by working this trip into his schedule was a good one.
 「国連重視」を掲げながら3年続けての首相欠席となれば日本の国際信用にかかわる。麻生首相もそう思ったのだろう。国会での所信表明演説の前に国連で演説するのは異例だが、強行日程をおして国連総会を優先したことは是としたい。

The prime minister gave his speech an Aso color by stating that Japan is committed to growing its own economy in order to contribute to the stability of the global economy.
 演説で麻生首相は、世界経済の安定に向け日本は経済を成長させることによって貢献していきたいとの考えを表明した。麻生カラーを出した部分だ。

He explained that Japan has carried out refueling operations in the Indian Ocean in cooperation with the campaign against terrorism and as part of the effort to assist in the reconstruction of Afghanistan, and said that Japan will "continue to proactively participate in unison with the international community in the fight against terrorism."
 テロ対策への協力では、アフガニスタン復興支援の一環としてインド洋での給油活動を行ってきたことを説明し、「今後とも国際社会と一体となりテロとの闘いに積極参画していく」と述べた。

His speech could be interpreted as signaling his resolve to continue the refueling operations. Given that the House of Representatives is expected to be dissolved soon, and that the outcome of the general election is uncertain, there is a possibility that the refueling operations may not be sustained. But even if that were to be the case, the prime minister has made an international pledge to "proactively participate" in the war against terrorism. Japan will have to pursue a policy that takes sufficient account of the importance of this pledge.
 給油活動継続への決意を示したものと受け取れる。早期に予想される衆院解散・総選挙の結果次第で給油継続が不可能になる可能性があるが、そうなっても首相が表明したテロ対策への「積極参画」は国際公約として残る。その重要性を十分に認識して対応していく必要がある。

One thing should be said with regard to the weight that the prime minister's words carry. After his speech, Prime Minister Aso stated, in reference to the Constitution's prohibition against the exercise of the right of collective defense, that it "basically should be changed." He might have thought that he was simply voicing his personal views in response to a question from the press, but this is probably not a topic that should be handled so casually.
 首相発言の重みに関し、ひとこと言っておきたい。麻生首相は演説後、集団的自衛権の行使を禁じた憲法解釈について「基本的に変えるべきものだ」と述べた。記者団に質問されたから持論を述べただけ、と思っているのかもしれないが、それほど軽々しく扱うべき話ではないだろう。

A committee of wisemen inaugurated by former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had issued a report on this topic that called for a change in the interpretation of the Constitution, but former Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda shelved the report. And even Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada has stated politicians "need to settle into their seats to talk over the issue." An issue that affects the foundation of Japan's national security policy needs to be debated in a calm environment.
 この問題では安倍晋三元首相が発足させた政府の有識者会議が憲法解釈の変更を求める報告書を出したが、福田康夫前首相が棚上げにした経緯がある。浜田靖一防衛相も「腰を落ち着けてゆっくり話した方がいい」と言っている。国の安全保障政策の根幹にかかわる問題は冷静な環境のもとで議論されるべきである。

In regard to Japan's diplomacy with its neighbors, Aso said that Japan would make an effort to strengthen its relations with its important partners China and South Korea. We hope that he treats Japan's relations with China and South Korea, which have gotten on track again, with great care and revives the summit diplomacy that involves alternating visits by the leaders of these countries.
 近隣外交について麻生首相は演説で、中国と韓国を重要なパートナーと位置づけ「関係強化に努める」と述べた。首脳往来が復活するなど軌道に乗り出した対中韓関係を大事にしてもらいたい。

Beijing in particular is alarmed by the "arc of freedom and prosperity" policy that Aso set forth while foreign minister, which it sees as a policy intended to contain China. Aso did not touch on this policy in his speech, but he asserted his belief in pursuing a "values diplomacy" that places a priority on building solidarity with countries that share the same basic values. He will need to provide a careful explanation of this point in order to avoid leaving the international community with a mistaken impression.
 首相が外相時代に新機軸として打ち出した「自由と繁栄の弧」構想には、特に中国が「対中包囲網だ」と警戒心を抱いている。演説ではこの構想には触れなかったが、基本的価値を共有する諸国との連帯を重視し、価値観外交を進める考えを表明した。この点については国際社会に誤解を与えないよう、ていねいな説明が必要になる。

毎日新聞 2008年9月27日 0時28分
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-30 12:39 | 英字速報

所信表明演説

(Sep. 30, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
Will Ozawa rise to Aso's challenge?
所信表明演説 小沢民主党代表はどう応じる(9月30日付・読売社説)

Prime Minister Taro Aso's first policy speech at the Diet on Monday was unusual in that he deliberately tried to provoke the Democratic Party of Japan, the largest force in the House of Councillors, by asking questions and making requests to it.
 参院第1党の民主党に質問したり要請したり、挑戦的で、異色の所信表明演説である。

Aso demanded the DPJ be prepared to provide answers to the questions he posed when it tries to grill him in the interpellation session. By doing so, Aso apparently aimed to address issues likely to be in the spotlight in the run-up to the anticipated dissolution of the House of Representatives for a general election.
 麻生首相は、就任後初の演説で、民主党に対し、自分の「質問」への「答え」を用意して代表質問するよう求めた。衆院解散・総選挙をにらみ、予想される争点について、布石を打つ狙いがあるのだろう。

Aso's speech thus appeared as a challenge to the DPJ that Ichiro Ozawa, the party's president will be unable to completely ignore. Close attention should be paid on how Ozawa will respond.
 まるで、「果たし状」のようだが、小沢代表も、申し入れを全く無視するわけにはいくまい。代表質問で、これにどう応じるのかを注目したい。

Aso first asked whether the DPJ is prepared to establish rules on consensus building.
 首相がまず、ただしたのは、衆参ねじれ状況下の国会で、民主党に合意形成のルールを打ち立てる「用意はあるのか」だった。

In the divided Diet, former Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda continued to be shaken by the DPJ during the last ordinary session despite showing a cooperative attitude toward the opposition camp.
 福田前首相は、通常国会で、野党との協調姿勢を前面に出しながら、民主党に翻弄(ほんろう)され続けた。

Aso obviously wants to avoid falling into the same trap as Fukuda.
 麻生首相は、前政権の二の舞いは御免、ということだろう。

===

Going on the offensive

Saying that the passage of a supplementary budget and its related bills are an urgent need, Aso pressed the DPJ hard to declare its position on the issue and clarify its stance on the government's plan to create a consumers affairs agency. Aso also suggested that ruling and opposition parties hold talks to coordinate policy.
 「成立は焦眉(しょうび)の急」として、補正予算案とその関連法案に対する賛否や、消費者庁創設への対応を明確化するよう求めた。同時に、与野党協議も呼びかけた。

Regarding the nation's foreign policy and security issues, Aso raised two key questions.
 外交・安全保障分野でも、次の2点を質問した。

First, he asked which the DPJ considers a higher priority: the Japan-U.S. alliance or the United Nations.
 一つは、民主党は日米同盟と国連のどちらを「優先劣後」させようとしているのか、である。

Ozawa has been taking the U.N.-centered approach for a long time. Aso underlined that the nation's top diplomatic priority should be strengthening of the Japan-U.S. security alliance. He also said the nation could not realistically leave its fate entirely up to the United Nations.
 小沢代表は、かねて「国連中心主義」の考え方に立っている。首相は、日本外交が最重視すべきは「日米同盟の強化」であり、「国運をそのまま委ねられない」のが国連の現実だ、と指摘した。

Second, Aso took up the issue of passing a bill to revise the new Antiterrorism Law to continue the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean. Aso pressed the DPJ, asking whether it considers it appropriate for the nation to avoid engaging in activities that are required by the international community.
 その二は、海上自衛隊によるインド洋での給油活動を継続する新テロ対策特別措置法改正案の扱いだ。国際社会で果たすべき活動から逃れて「民主党はそれでもいいと考えているのか」と迫った。

===

Chance of course change

There is the possibility of major policy changes regarding both issues if the DPJ takes power. Ozawa needs to wipe out that concern.
 いずれも、仮に民主党が政権を取った場合、懸念されている問題だ。小沢代表は、これを払拭(ふっしょく)する必要があろう。

Aso referred in the policy speech to the reconstruction of the nation's economy as an issue to be urgently tackled. He said that top priority for the time being should be given to measures to boost the flagging economy. This stance has apparently been announced as a lower house election is in sight.
 演説で首相は、緊急課題として「日本経済の立て直し」を挙げ、当面は、景気対策に最優先で取り組む考えを表明した。衆院選を強く意識したものだ。

On the promised review of the health insurance system for those aged 75 or older, which some observers say is an effort to win votes in the upcoming election, Aso ended up merely saying that he would consider reviewing the system within a year or so. It is quite unclear how the system would be reviewed and what changes would be considered.
 だが、選挙対策との指摘もある後期高齢者医療制度の見直しについては、「1年をめどに必要な見直しを検討する」と述べただけで終わった。これでは、何をどう見直していくのか、全く不明のままではないか。

Since Aso delivered the speech in an unusual manner by asking the opposition's stance on a number of issues, he must answer sincerely during the upcoming interpellation session without dodging the opposition's questions.
 首相は、野党の見解をただすという異例の演説をした以上、代表質問に対しては、野党の追及をかわすことなく、誠実に答弁しなければならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 30, 2008)
(2008年9月30日02時18分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-30 09:04 | 英字新聞

原子力空母配備

(Mainichi Japan) September 27, 2008
Japan, U.S. must adopt impeccable safety measures for nuclear carrier deployment
社説:原子力空母配備 「安全」に日米政府は万全策を

The U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George Washington has arrived at its new home port of Yokosuka in Kanagawa Prefecture, the first U.S. nuclear carrier to be deployed to a home port outside the U.S.
 米国の原子力空母ジョージ・ワシントン(GW)が25日、神奈川県の米軍横須賀基地に配備された。原子力空母が米国外を母港とするのは初めてである。

The Navy published a 200-page comic book on the George Washington in April this year, aimed at assuaging the concerns of local residents. The comic book provides descriptions of the interior of the George Washington, its training regimen, and daily life on the aircraft carrier as it cruises from the U.S. to Yokosuka, and its hero is a Japanese-American sailor.
 在日米海軍はGWを紹介する200ページの漫画を作成、地元で配布した。発行は今年4月。日系米国人の新兵を主人公にし、米国から横須賀に向かうGW艦内や訓練の様子、日常生活を描いたもので、原子力空母の配備に対する地元住民の不安を和らげるのが目的のようだ。

In one scene, the hero helps to extinguish a fire on board. The ship did in fact experience a fire off the coast of South America as it was bound for Japan -- but while the comic-book version of the fire had no effect on the vessel's operations, the real George Washington suffered 37 injuries to crew and was forced to undergo repairs, delaying its arrival at Yokosuka for over a month. The cause of the comic-book fire was an overheating washer-dryer, but the cause of the actual fire was more insidious -- a discarded cigarette.
 漫画には、航行中のGWで火災が発生、主人公が消火に活躍する場面もある。
本物のGWは、日本に向けて南米沖を航行中の5月に実際に火災が発生し、37人がけがをした。漫画では航行に影響はなかったが、本物は修理のため横須賀到着が予定より1カ月以上遅れる事態となった。原因も、漫画では洗濯乾燥機の過熱だったが、現実の火災はたばこの投げ捨てという悪質なものだった。

Since small problems and accidents on nuclear-powered vessels can potentially escalate into major crises involving local residents, it's only natural that the fire should have prompted the Japanese and U.S. governments to adopt a framework for preventing and responding to accidents.
 原子力艦船は、小さなトラブルや事故が周辺住民を巻き込む重大事態に発展する可能性がある。火災事故を踏まえ、日米両政府が事故防止と発生に備えた十分な体制をとるのは当然だ。

In laying the groundwork for the deployment of the George Washington, the U.S. presented a fact sheet to the Japanese government in 2006 regarding the safety of nuclear-powered vessels. This document states repeatedly that accident scenarios including leaks of radioactive material are improbable, and adheres to the position that accidents will not happen. It also stresses that past port calls in Japan have never triggered spikes in radiation levels in the environment.
 米国はGW配備を控え、06年に原子力軍艦の安全性に関する「ファクトシート」を日本政府に提示した。この文書は放射性物質の放出などの「事故が起こるシナリオは極めて非現実的」などと繰り返し、事故は起きないという立場に貫かれている。日本への過去の寄港で、環境中の「放射能の増加をまったく引き起こしていない」とも強調している。

But such statements are viewed with a strong dose of skepticism. In May 1968, when the nuclear submarine USS Swordfish called at the port of Sasebo in Nagasaki, a Japanese radiation monitoring boat detected radiation near the submarine 10 to 20 times above normal levels; and after the nuclear submarine USS Honolulu departed from Yokosuka Naval Base in September 2006, cobalt-58 and cobalt-60 were detected in the seas nearby.
 しかし、これを疑問視する声は強い。68年5月、原潜ソードフィッシュが長崎・佐世保港に入港時、日本の放射能監視艇が原潜周辺で通常の10~20倍の放射能を測定した。06年9月には、原潜ホノルルが横須賀基地を出港後、周辺海域でコバルト58とコバルト60が検出された。

In both cases, the U.S. denied that the radiation had any connection to the nuclear submarines, and efforts to get at the truth have been sidetracked. Last month, it was learned that the nuclear submarine USS Houston had also leaked radioactive coolant water when it was docked off White Beach in Okinawa, and when it visited Sasebo Port between June 2006 and July 2008.
いずれも、米国側は原潜との関係を否定し、真相の究明はうやむやになっている。先月には、沖縄・ホワイトビーチ沖に停泊し、佐世保港に寄港した原潜ヒューストンで、06年6月から今年7月にかけて放射性物質を含む冷却水が漏れていたことも判明した。

The Japanese response has been muffled by the U.S. military's wall of secrecy. When a nuclear submarine visited Japan for the first time in 1964, the U.S. government issued a statement declaring that it "would not provide technological information," and not allow "boarding of the submarine for the purpose of acquiring technological information." Japan's Foreign Ministry had no alternative but to rely on U.S. statements when providing information on leaks from the Houston.
 日本側の対応を制約しているのが、米軍の軍事機密の壁である。原潜が初めて日本に寄港した64年、米政府は声明で「技術上の情報を提供しない」し、「技術情報入手の目的で乗船するのを許可しない」と宣言している。ヒューストンの放射能漏れに関する情報も、外務省は米側の連絡をそのまま発表する以外に手だてはなかった。

But in the event of an accident, or if there is suspicion that an accident has occurred, it would be inadequate to simply rely on notices from the U.S. military. The Japanese government should discuss sufficient responses with the U.S. government including boarding of the vessels. Otherwise, the concerns of local residents cannot be sufficiently addressed.
 事故が発生したり、その疑いがある場合には、米軍からの通報だけに頼るのでは不十分である。日本政府は、「立ち入り」を含めた十分な対応を米政府と取り決めるべきだ。そうでなければ、住民の不安に応えることはできない。

毎日新聞 2008年9月26日 0時06分
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-29 13:01 | 英字速報

中山国交相辞任

(Sep. 29, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
Nakayama's remarks immoderate, costly
中山国交相辞任 節度を欠いた発言だった(9月29日付・読売社説)

Too much water drowns the miller. Even when expounding one's opinions as a politician, one must not forget one's position as a cabinet member and keep on making remarks beyond the limits of reasonableness.
 過ぎたるはなお及ばざるがごとし、ということだろう。政治家として持論を展開するにしても、閣僚としての立場を忘れて、矩(のり)をこえた発言を連発してはなるまい。

Construction and Transport Minister Nariaki Nakayama resigned Sunday to take responsibility of a series of verbal gaffes, including his description of those who have engaged in years of struggle against the expansion of Narita Airport as "squeaky wheels."
 中山成彬国土交通相が28日、成田空港拡張への反対を「ごね得」などとした一連の発言の責任をとって辞任した。

Nakayama retracted parts of his remarks, but he reiterated, "I've been thinking the Japan Teachers Union should be disbanded."
 中山氏はいったん発言を部分的に撤回した後も、「日教組はぶっ壊す」などと繰り返していた。

The first Diet debates under the new Cabinet of Prime Minister Taro Aso will start Monday. The opposition parties were unanimous demanding Nakayama's resignation or dismissal. Nakayama's resignation seems to be aimed at minimizing any ill effects on the extraordinary Diet session and the planned House of Representatives election.
 麻生新内閣として初の国会論戦が29日から始まる。野党は辞任や罷免を要求していた。国交相辞任は、国会や衆院選への影響を最小限にとどめるためだろう。

As for a delay in Narita Airport development, Nakayama said: "More or less squeaky wheels, or I believe they are [the product] of bad postwar education. It is very regrettable that the airport has not been able to expand in a milieu in which people lack the spirit of sacrificing themselves to a degree for the sake of the public good and think it good if they care only about themselves."
 中山氏は、成田空港整備の遅れについて、「ごね得というか、戦後教育が悪かった。公のためにはある程度自分を犠牲にしてでも、というのがなくて、自分さえよければという風潮の中で、空港拡張もできなかった」と述べた。

===

Accurate, but undiplomatic

In general, the climate Nakayama described seems to exist. In the case of the Narita Airport issue, there is no denying that opposition to the project has harmed the public interest--to construct and maintain an airport that is safe and equipped with sufficient landing capacity.
 一般的に、中山氏の言うような「風潮」は、なくはないだろう。成田空港の場合、反対派の運動がこれまで、安全で十分な発着能力をもつ空港を整備するという「公共の利益」を損ねてきたことも、また、否定できない。

However, describing them as "squeaky wheels" is questionable. As the person responsible for the nation's airport administration that requires dialogue with local residents, it was an inappropriate remark.
 だが、「ごね得」というのはいかがか。地元との対話が必要な空港行政の責任者としては、不適切な発言だろう。

As for the recent bribery scandal involving education board officials and teachers in Oita Prefecture, Nakayama said: "The children of Japan Teachers Union [members] can become teachers even if their grades are bad. That's why scholastic ability in Oita Prefecture is low."
Also, he said: "One of the reasons I have proposed to conduct the nationwide academic achievement examination [for primary sixth-graders and middle school third-graders] was that I thought academic ability could be poor in areas where the teachers union has strong influence. Therefore, I think that the role of conducting the nationwide academic achievement examinations has come to an end."
 中山氏は、大分県教育委員会の汚職事件に関して、「日教組の子どもは成績が悪くても先生になる。だから大分県の学力は低い」「私が全国学力テストを提唱したのも、日教組の強いところは学力が低いと思ったからだ。だから学力テストを実施する役目は終わったと思う」と語った。

Nakayama has criticized the Japan Teachers Union, saying that they do not teach students about the national flag and the national anthem, and oppose moral education.
 中山氏は「国旗・国歌も教えない」「道徳教育に反対している」などとして日教組を批判した。

===

Beyond his authority

Even if his remarks may have a point, the educational issue is not under the jurisdiction of the construction and transport minister.
的を射ている点もあるとしても、教育にかかわる問題は、国交相の所管外のことだろう。

By saying that the role of the nationwide academic achievement examination has come to an end, Nakayama especially cannot avoid being blamed for his imprudence.
 とくに、全国学力テストは役割を終えたというのは、軽率のそしりを免れない。

The examination, now in its second year since the Education, Science and Technology Ministry resumed administering it in 2007, has now reached the stage at which its results, at last, are about to be used to improve students' academic performances.
 今年2回目が実施された学力テストは、ようやく、そのデータを学力向上に本格活用していく段階にあるからだ。

As for the government's tourism policy, Nakayama blurted out an apparent factual error, saying, "Japan is very introverted, or what may be called ethnically homogenous, or rather it tends to be inward-looking."
 観光政策に関して、「日本は随分内向きな、単一民族」と口を滑らせた。明らかな事実誤認だ。

The Aso administration's record has been marred by the scandal of the Cabinet minister's resignation only five days after its launch.
 内閣発足5日目にして、閣僚辞任という不祥事で、新政権は出端(ではな)をくじかれた形だ。

Aso must immediately seek to tighten discipline and manage the political situation.
 麻生首相は、早急にタガを締め直し、政局運営にあたることが求められる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 29, 2008)
(2008年9月29日01時54分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-29 10:12 | 英字新聞

中山国交相辞任か?

中山国交相の失言に関する報道はめずらしく各社で足並みが揃っていない。
最初は27日の朝日社説、それから28日の日経社説と毎日英語版で記事をみかけた。
最初にこの朝日社説の日本語版を読むと、その下の毎日英語版の記事が理解しやすいと思います。(スラチャイ)

朝日社説:

中山国交相―首相の門出にこの放言 晴れの大臣就任で、つい口が滑らかになりすぎたのか。中山成彬国土交通相が、就任2日目の報道機関のインタビューで驚くべき発言を連発した。

 成田空港の整備の遅れにどう対応するかを問われ、中山氏はこう答えた。

 「ごね得というか戦後教育が悪かったと思うが、公のためにはある程度自分を犠牲にしてでもというのがなくて、自分さえよければという風潮のなかで空港拡張もできなかった」

 整備が遅れた理由に住民らの反対運動があるのはその通りだ。だが、その背景に、住民らに十分な説明をしないまま機動隊を使って強制的に土地収用を繰り返した政府の重い失政があったことを、いまは政府も認めている。

 そんな政界の常識さえ身につけていないことにあきれる。しかも中山氏は空港行政の最高責任者だ。

 大分県教委の汚職事件については、こう言い放った。「日教組の子供は成績悪くても先生になる。だから大分県の学力は低いんだよ。私がなぜ全国学力テストを提唱したかといえば、日教組の強いところは学力低いんじゃないかと思ったから。現にそうだよ」

 中山氏は文部科学相当時、全国学力調査を導入する旗を振った。その目的を「競い合う心を育てるため」などと説明してきたが、どうやらそれはごまかしだったようだ。

 それにしても、毎年ざっと60億円もの費用がかかる全国学力調査を日教組憎しで導入したというのだから、自民党政権というのは豪儀なものである。

 外国人旅行者をどう増やすかの質問に関連しては、こんな発言もあった。「日本はずいぶん内向きな、単一民族といいますか……」

 わずか3カ月前、アイヌ民族を日本の先住民族として認めるべきだという歴史的な国会決議が全会一致で採択された。国会の総意として、先住民族の名誉と尊厳を守っていこうと誓ったのだが、中山氏は反対だったのか。

 中山氏はこれらの発言を「誤解を招いた」と撤回した。だが、どれも閣僚としてという前に、国会議員としての資質を疑わせる発言である。

 中山氏は文科相時代にも「歴史教科書から従軍慰安婦や強制連行という言葉が減ってきたのは本当によかった」「そもそも従軍慰安婦という言葉はなかった」などの発言を連発した。

 そんな中山氏を閣僚に任命した麻生首相自身、数々の失言で物議をかもした過去を持つ。総裁選の際「いつも寸止めで踏みとどまってきた」と冗談交じりに語ったが、寸止めならいいということではあるまい。

 堂本暁子千葉県知事をはじめ、きのうの国交省は抗議ラッシュの様相だった。内閣支持率は48%。首相が国連で外交デビューを飾ったその日にこの体たらくでは、先が思いやられる。

毎日英語版:

(Mainichi Japan) September 28, 2008

Nakayama's foot-in-mouth antics already casting doubt on Aso's Cabinet
Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Minister Nariaki Nakayama remarked that some residents near Narita Airport refused to sell their land for the airport construction because they thought there would be more gain by holding out. He later retracted and apologized for his remarks, but it's not enough to settle the controversy he sparked.

His misconceptions and lack of proper understanding of the role of the ministry he supervises has raised questions as to whether he is qualified to serve as a Cabinet minister, and over the insight of Prime Minister Taro Aso, who appointed him.

Regarding Narita Airport, Nakayama remarked: "When I came home in 1978, I landed at the airport. Since then, there had been only one lane (runway) for many years, and it's a pity for Japan. Many held out, expecting more gain. I think it's one of the problems of post-war education. They lack public-mindedness. They have no desire to make a certain self-sacrifice for the benefit of the public, and think only of their own benefit, making it hard to expand the airport. It's a real shame."

Local residents opposing the Narita Airport construction project, which began in 1960s, were in bitter conflict with the national government from the start. Through negotiations with local residents at round-table talks and other places, the government admitted in 1995 that it was at fault for attempting to force the project through, and offered an apology.

In the apology, the government admitted its responsibility for the problem, and local residents have no reason to be criticized for holding out for more.

He failed to probe relations between the lack of public-mindedness and problems involving post-war education, and the dispute over the airport, and apparently made the remarks based on his groundless impressions -- and which could damage the mutual trust that local residents and the ministry have nurtured for many years through their efforts.

Nakayama then trained his sights on the Japan Teachers Union (JTU), and said: "The children of JTU members can become teachers even if their grades (in recruitment exams) are poor. Therefore, academic ability in Oita Prefecture is low," in an apparent reference to a bribery scandal involving recruitment of public school teachers in the prefecture.

"I proposed a nationwide academic aptitude test because I thought academic levels in areas where the JTU hold sway are low. Now I know it's true, so there's no longer any point in conducting such tests," he continued.

Nakayama proposed the test during his tenure as education, culture, sports, science and technology minister in the Cabinet of Junichiro Koizumi. Such an examination should be aimed at improving the academic levels of schoolchildren as a whole. However, he wanted to use it to prove a correlation between the JTU and low academic levels; which he failed to do. Claiming that "there is no longer any point in conducting such tests" -- as the minister who introduced the scheme, costing the government billions of yen a year -- is incredibly imprudent and irresponsible.

Regarding tourism policy, his remark that Japan is an ethnically homogeneous country has also been criticized for being a misconception.

This is not the first time that Nakayama's remarks have stirred controversy. One cannot help but wonder whether, Prime Minister Aso thought carefully about the selection of his Cabinet members and whether he really placed the right people in the right posts, as he said when he announced his Cabinet lineup.

This latest string of gaffes has raised doubts among a disappointed public. The government is faced with many outstanding issues, and Cabinet members are required to do their best to fulfill their duties, regardless of whether a general election will be called in the near future.

With the revolving-door nature of the top ministry posts in recent years, the Cabinet's trustworthiness as the top body of the executive branch of the government has been called into question.

The prime minister should instruct Cabinet ministers to properly understand policy issues they are supposed to tackle, and take a resolute action against any problem like the recent gaffe.
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-28 10:18 | 英字速報

後期高齢者医療

(Sep. 28, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
Unclear what Masuzoe means by 'drastic review'
後期高齢者医療 意味不明な「抜本的見直し」(9月28日付・読売社説)

The government and ruling parties have been blowing hot and cold over the new medical insurance system for those aged 75 and older.
 後期高齢者医療制度をめぐって、政府・与党が迷走している。

Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Yoichi Masuzoe proposed a drastic review of the system, and Prime Minister Taro Aso backed the idea. However, it is not clear what such a "review" would mean in effect, and some lawmakers even within the ruling parties oppose the move.
 舛添厚生労働相が、現行制度を抜本的に見直すとの方針を表明し、麻生首相も同調した。だが、「見直し」が何を意味するか判然とせず、与党にも反発が強い。

The Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito referred to the system in their latest agreement to maintain the coalition government, saying they would try to improve the system by taking into consideration elderly people's feelings about it.
 自民党と公明党の政権合意では「高齢者の心情に配慮して、より良い制度に改善する」という表現にとどまった。

It goes without saying that governments should strive to improve every policy and system. But this is different from drastically reviewing them.
 すべての施策や制度は絶えず改善することが必要だ。しかし、抜本的見直しとは話が違う。

===

Proposal ill thought out

Masuzoe said his proposal focuses on three principles: not distinguishing those insured only by their age; changing the current system of mandatorily deducting insurance premium payments from participants' pension accounts to a voluntary system; and ensuring that any changes to be made do not exacerbate feelings of inequity between working people and retirees receiving insurance premium payments.
 舛添厚労相は後期高齢者医療制度の見直しについて、ポイントを掲げている。加入者を年齢のみで区分しない、年金からの保険料天引きを強制しない、世代間の対立を助長しない、の3点だ。

The first point may be the most important. The current system was intended to create a united medical insurance system for those aged 75 and older, whose medical fees have increased steeply in recent years, and to support aged people equally, notwithstanding the fact that working generations subscribe to various corporate health insurance plans.
 特に問題となるのは、年齢で区分しない、とする点だろう。
 医療費が急激に増える75歳以上の人を対象に、統一した医療保険制度を作り、現役世代は様々な健保組合に属していても公平に高齢者全体を支えよう、というのが現行制度の精神である。

If the government and ruling parties decide to do away with the new system's age-bracket provisions because they worry overly that elderly people aged 75 and older have loudly protested against being described as koki koreisha (late-stage elderly people)--as the system refers to them--they will have to rebuild the system from scratch.
 「後期高齢者」という呼称が招いた感情的な反発に配慮するあまり、年齢区分そのものを否定するのならば、制度の根幹から作り直さなければならない。

If those who continue to work regardless of their age are allowed to subscribe to corporate health insurance plans as members of the working generations, the government and ruling parties will merely have broadened the options of such people. This does not go beyond the framework of system improvement.
 何歳になっても働き続けている人は現役として企業健保に所属できる、というのなら、選択肢を広げるだけで制度改善の範疇(はんちゅう)だ。

It is difficult to describe the first of the three points of Masuzoe's proposal--not distinguishing between those insured in regard to their age bracket--as a "drastic review" because an "improvement" is not the same as a "drastic review."
 全く次元の異なる話であり、同じ「見直し」とは呼び難い。

===

Alternative plan needed

The third point--aiming at a system that will not worsen feelings of inequity between working people and retirees--also is unclear. After all, the health insurance system for elderly people that lasted until fiscal 2007 hit a wall due to ambiguous rules on sharing burdens between working people and retirees.
 世代間の対立を助長しない制度をめざす、という点も意味不明である。昨年度までの老人保健制度は、世代間の負担のルールがあいまいだったために、行き詰まったのではなかったか。

Masuzoe said he intends to ask an expert panel to discuss the makeup of an ideal new system from square one. But there are too many ambiguous points of contention.
 舛添厚労相は、有識者会議に一から議論を委ねるという。不透明な論点があまりに多い。

In a Yomiuri Shimbun poll held immediately after the launch of the Aso Cabinet, 67.5 percent of respondents said they highly evaluated the agreement between the LDP and New Komeito to review the new medical insurance system for those aged 75 and older. This figure reflects people's dissatisfaction with the current situation.
 麻生内閣発足に合わせて読売新聞が行った世論調査では、自公両党が後期高齢者医療制度の見直しに合意したことを67・5%の人が「評価する」とした。現状に対する不満を反映した数字だろう。

But merely parroting the vague slogan "review" without offering a clear future vision can only be seen as a vote-catching gambit ahead of the forthcoming general election. Under the current situation, the government and ruling parties are in no position to criticize the opposition parties, which have demanded the abolition of the current system without putting forward an alternative plan.
 だが、明確な展望を示さないまま、漠然と「見直し」を唱えるだけでは総選挙をにらんだ人気取りとしか見えない。これでは政府・与党は、代案を出さずに「まず現行制度を廃止せよ」と主張する野党を批判できまい。

A long-range outlook is needed for reform of the social security system, including medical care for elderly people. If the government and ruling parties run about in confusion every time an election approaches, public anxiety and dissatisfaction will accumulate.
 高齢者医療を含め、社会保障制度改革で必要なのは長期展望である。選挙が近づくごとに右往左往していては、そのたびに国民の不安と不満が蓄積される。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 28, 2008)
(2008年9月28日01時42分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-28 08:14 | 英字新聞

首相国連演説

(Sep. 27, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
Japan's message should be clearly transmitted
首相国連演説 日本の「言葉」を発信せよ(9月27日付・読売社説)

Taro Aso has made his diplomatic debut as prime minister. We hope he will play a leading role in sending a clear message to domestic and foreign audiences concerning what Japan attaches importance to and what it will try to accomplish in the international community.
 麻生外交が始動した。日本は、国際社会で何を重んじ、何をなそうとするのか。麻生首相は、自ら先頭に立ち、明確なメッセージを国内外に発信してもらいたい。

Aso delivered a speech at the 63rd U.N. General Assembly on Thursday, becoming the first Japanese prime minister to address the meeting since 2005.
 麻生首相が25日、ニューヨークの国連総会で演説した。日本の首相の演説は3年ぶりだ。

"Peace and happiness are most certainly within our grasp through the pursuit of economic prosperity and democracy," Aso said. "I am determined to work in solidarity with countries holding fundamental values in common and to share Japan's experiences with nations strongly needing such support."
 首相は「経済的な繁栄と民主主義を希求する先に、平和と人々の幸福が必ずや勝ち取れる」と強調した。基本的な価値観を共有する国々と連帯して日本の経験を各国に伝えたい、とも訴えた。

Aso's remarks reflect the basic stance of Japan's diplomacy: The country will actively support the growth of developing countries' economies and institutions, and contribute to rooting out poverty and terrorism.
 途上国の経済発展や国造りを積極的に支援し、貧困解消やテロ撲滅に貢献する、という日本外交の基本姿勢を示したものだ。

The fact that it is the world's second-largest economy enables Japan to have its voice heard in the international community. But the country slipped to fifth place among official development assistance donors in 2007, mainly due to its deteriorating fiscal condition. If Aso is to strengthen foreign aid, as he has said he wants to do, it is indispensable to ensure Japan's economic growth first.
 国際社会での日本の発言力の源泉は、世界2位の経済力にある。だが、財政事情の悪化で2007年の日本の政府開発援助(ODA)実績は世界5位に転落した。
 首相が目指すような対外支援を強化するには、まず、日本自身の経済成長が不可欠だ。

===

Reform of UNSC needed

As foreign minister under the administration of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Aso spelled out his diplomatic policy, which upholds universal values, including freedom, democracy and human rights, and supports the economic development and democratization of Eastern Europe and central Asia.
 首相は、安倍政権の外相時代に、自由や民主主義、人権などの普遍的価値を重視し、東欧や中央アジアの経済発展や民主化を支援していく外交方針を掲げた。

Imposing one's values on another country is bound to draw opposition from that country. Diplomacy needs width and depth.
 一方的な価値観の押しつけは相手国の反発を招きやすい。外交には幅や懐の深さも必要だ。

But Aso's willingness to spell out Japan's diplomatic philosophy is important.
 だが、日本の外交理念を「言葉」にして発信しよう、という首相の姿勢は大切だろう。

Reform of the U.N. Security Council, including Japan's bid to gain permanent membership, is important for the national interest. Fresh intergovernmental negotiations on expanding the Security Council will start by the end of February. Japan urgently needs to evolve a strategy centering on "an expansion of both permanent and nonpermanent membership," which Aso stressed in his speech.
 日本が常任理事国入りを目指す安全保障理事会改革は、日本の国益のために重要だ。来年2月末までに新たな政府間交渉が開始される。首相が訴えた「常任・非常任理事国双方の議席拡大」を軸に早急に戦略を練る必要がある。
evolve=
1 〈論理・意見・計画などを〉徐々に発展[展開]させる;〈結論・法則などを〉導き出す
~ a new plan from a casual remark  ふとした発言から新計画を発展させる.
2 〈におい・蒸気などを〉発する,放出する.
3 〔生〕…を進化させる.
━ 昿[Ⅰ(慱)]
1 発展[進化]する;〈作品の筋が〉進展する
The balloon ~d into the airship. [=The airship ~d from [out of] the balloon.]  気球が発展して飛行船ができた.
2 〔生〕進化する.
語源 ラテン語Ivolvere (I-外に+volvere回転する=回転して解く→展開する)
e・vólv・a・ble慝
~・ment慥

If Japan is elected as one of the 10 new nonpermanent members of the Security Council in October, it would serve a two-year term, starting from January.
 日本は、10月の非常任理事国選挙で当選すれば、来年1月から2年間、安保理メンバーとなる。

===

Refueling job must continue

Aso also declared in his speech, "Japan will continue into the future to stand side by side with the international community and participate proactively in the fight against terrorism."
 首相は演説で「国際社会と一体となり、テロとの戦いに積極参画していく」と宣言した。日本が能動的な国連外交を展開するためにも、海上自衛隊によるインド洋での給油活動は継続すべきだ。

To conduct its active U.N. diplomacy, Japan should continue the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean. Japan must shoulder a fair burden if it is to contribute to international peace cooperation activities and maintain the Japan-U.S. security alliance, which Aso clarified in his speech as an "unchangeable cornerstone" of Japan's diplomacy.
 国際平和協力活動に貢献し、首相が演説で日本外交の「不変の基軸」と明言した日米同盟を堅持していくには、日本としても相応の役割を担わねばならない。

Referring to the government's interpretation of the Constitution, which bans the country from exercising the right of the collective self-defense, Aso told reporters in New York on Thursday, "Basically, it should be changed."
 首相は記者団に、集団的自衛権の行使を禁じている政府の憲法解釈について、「基本的に解釈を変えるべきものだ」と語った。

In June, a panel of experts discussing the right of the collective self-defense, which was set up by Abe, submitted a proposal to then Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda calling for a change in the government's current interpretation. The government should tackle this issue seriously.
 政府解釈の変更を求める有識者懇談会の提言が今年6月、福田前首相に提出されている。政府として真剣に取り組むべき課題だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 27, 2008)
(2008年9月27日01時52分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-27 10:27 | 英字新聞

吉田茂

(Mainichi Japan) September 25, 2008
Which politician will be the next cartoon hero?
余録:風刺漫画の主人公

Former Prime Minister Shigeru Yoshida was looking for the house of an acquaintance while visiting Kamakura when a child playing baseball on a vacant lot saw him, and shouted, "The prime minister's here!"
吉田茂元首相が鎌倉の知人を訪ね、家を探していると、空き地で野球をしていた子供が見つけて叫んだ。「総理大臣がいるよ!」。

One of his playmates, not taking him seriously, shouted back, "Why would the prime minister come here?" But the child who had seen Yoshida said, "But he looks just like the cartoon character." Yoshida himself was fond of retelling this story.
仲間がバカにしたように「こんなとこに総理大臣がいるもんか」と言うと、見つけた子は「けど、漫画にそっくりだよ」吉田本人が好んで語っていた話という。

Indeed, Yoshida was caricatured in countless cartoons, and when he retired, one cartoonist came out with a cartoon in which cartoonists express their gratitude to the prime minister.
実際、風刺漫画に数限りなく描かれ、引退時には漫画家がこぞって元首相に感謝している漫画まで描かれたという人だ。

His grandson, Liberal Democratic Party President and Prime Minister Taro Aso, who is himself a cartoon fan, has finally acquired the throne that allows him to become the hero of a political cartoon. In a crowded field of five, Aso won two-thirds of the votes cast in the LDP presidential election, and cruised to a landslide victory.
その孫で、自身が漫画ファンという麻生太郎自民党新総裁も、ようやく念願の風刺漫画の主人公の座を手中に収めた
5人の候補乱立となった自民党総裁選で、投票総数の3分の2を集めて圧勝した麻生新総裁だった。

Aso takes the helm of a party that has been peering over the precipice because its two previous leaders abandoned the reins of government. But the new prime minister's plans for opposing Democratic Party of Japan leader Ichiro Ozawa, who on the previous day had unveiled his own platform, are falling into place. Without a doubt, the LDP is reading from a playbook that calls for the selection of a new party president to jumpstart the party's sagging approval ratings, and the pumping up of the new leader's popularity as he heads into the general election.
2代続けてトップが政権を投げ出したガケっぷちの党を率い、前日に政権構想を発表した民主党・小沢一郎代表と対決する構図が固まった
もともと新総裁選びで党の支持率低下をリセットし、新リーダーの人気をもり立てて総選挙に臨むのが自民党のシナリオに違いない。

But in the interim, the U.S. financial crisis and the tainted rice scandal have snowballed. Holding the party presidential election in the midst of these events left people with the impression that Japanese politics was incapable of mustering a response.
だがこの間の米金融危機、汚染米問題の拡大である。そのさなかの総裁選は状況に対応できない日本政治を象徴するかのように国民の目に映った

Shigeru Yoshida hated election campaigns. When his campaign strategists urged him to deliver speeches on the street, he refused, saying, "How can I speak on affairs of state where there is constant horse and car traffic!" But today, the LDP's popularity depends on the constant traffic of new party presidents. It just so happens that Ozawa's father, Saeki Ozawa, a masterful politician, was a close associate of Yoshida's. So of these two party leaders with a connection to Yoshida, who will survive to become the hero of a political cartoon? ("Yoroku," a front page column in the Mainichi Shimbun)
選挙運動嫌いだった吉田茂は、選挙参謀が街頭演説を求めると「車馬絡繹(らくえき)で国事が語れるか」と言って応じなかった。「絡繹」とは人馬の往来が絶えないさまを示した古い言葉だが、今や自民党には新総裁の絡繹での人気が頼りのようである
ちなみに小沢代表の父親、小沢佐重喜(さえき)も吉田茂の側近としてらつ腕を振るった政治家だった。ではこの吉田ゆかりの与野党リーダー2人、どちらが風刺漫画の主人公として生き残るだろう。
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-26 13:30 | 英字速報

米原子力空母

(Sep. 26, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
Aircraft carrier to aid stability in Asia
米原子力空母 アジア安定に役立つ日本配備(9月26日付・読売社説)

The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George Washington arrived Thursday at the U.S. naval base in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, a deployment expected to contribute not only to the defense of Japan but also to peace and stability in the entire Asia-Pacific region.
日本防衛だけでなく、アジア太平洋地域全体の平和と安定に貢献することが期待される。

The carrier replaces the conventional aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk, which was deployed at the base in 1998, but is to be decommissioned due to its age. Its replacement marks the first U.S. nuclear-powered military vessel deployed to Japan.
米原子力空母「ジョージ・ワシントン」が海軍横須賀基地に配備された。1998年に配備された通常型空母「キティホーク」が老朽化し、退役することに伴う交代である。米原子力艦船の日本配備は初めてだ。

Commissioned in 1992, the George Washington is the fourth youngest of the U.S. Navy's 11 aircraft carriers. The ship has 75 planes on board and about 6,000 crew members, including pilots.
92年就役のジョージ・ワシントンは、米海軍の空母11隻の中で4番目に新しい。75機の航空機を搭載し、航空要員を含めた乗組員は約6000人に上る。

It is capable of engaging in military operations longer than conventional carriers as its power is generated by nuclear reactors. Its acceleration when setting sail also is much faster than that of conventional carriers.
動力源が原子炉のため、通常型空母と比べて、より長時間の作戦行動ができる。初動時の加速力も格段に優れている。

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A powerful deterrent

The deployment in Japan of an aircraft carrier with better capabilities strengthens the deterrent potential of the U.S. military. The presence of the U.S. military in Japan is a cornerstone of the Japan-U.S. security alliance, and an aircraft carrier plays a pivotal role.
日本配備の空母の高性能化は、米軍の抑止力の強化につながる。米軍のプレゼンス(存在)は、日米同盟の基盤だ。中でも空母が果たす役割は大きい。

When a presidential election was held in Taiwan in March, the Kitty Hawk and another U.S. aircraft carrier conducted an exercise in waters east of Taiwan as a show of force. The drill was believed to be aimed at preventing China from taking any action similar to a missile drill it conducted in the Taiwan Strait in 1996 to demonstrate its power when Taiwan held its first presidential election.
今年3月の台湾総統選の際には、キティホークなど2隻の米空母が台湾東方海域で訓練を実施し、周辺ににらみをきかせた。96年の初の総統選で中国が行ったミサイル演習のような示威行動を防ぐのが目的とみられる。

Meanwhile, it is necessary to ensure safety regarding the nuclear-powered vessel.
一方で、原子力空母の安全対策には万全を期す必要がある。

In May, unauthorized smoking by a crew member aboard the George Washington sparked a fire, which resulted in the demotions of the captain and the executive officer. Due to necessary repair work, the carrier's deployment to Yokosuka was delayed by more than a month. Though the nuclear reactors were not damaged, it shows that an accident can be caused by simple misdeeds.
ジョージ・ワシントンでは今年5月、乗組員が無断喫煙したたばこの火で火災が起きた。正副艦長は更迭され、修理のため日本配備が1か月以上遅れた。原子炉とは無関係だが、お粗末な事故だ。

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Easing public concerns

It was revealed in August that the nuclear-powered submarine USS Houston had leaked small amounts of radioactive substances from a water valve for more than two years, during which the submarine made Japanese port calls on 11 occasions.
8月には米原潜「ヒューストン」で2年以上にわたる微量の放射能漏れが発覚した。バルブからの水の染み出しが原因だ。この間、原潜は日本に11回寄港していた。

The concentration of leaked radioactive substance was said to be about the same as what exists naturally in the ocean. The total amount of radiation leaked during the Japanese port calls is said to be far less than the amount released during one X-ray of the chest.
漏れた放射能は、海中に自然に存在する放射能と同程度の濃度とされる。日本寄港時の放出総量も、X線胸部撮影の1回分よりも、はるかに少ないという。

Even if this is so, the Japanese government must continue to urge the United States to take the utmost care in safety management of the aircraft carrier if it wants to dispel the anxieties of local residents and other people concerned. It also should proactively respond to requests to disclose information about accidents and other matters of public interest.
それでも、地元住民や関係者の不安を解消するため、日本政府は、米側に空母の安全管理に細心の注意を払うよう求め続けるべきだ。事故などの情報公開に積極的に対応することも必要だ。

The Yokosuka city government approved in June 2006 the deployment of a nuclear-powered U.S. aircraft carrier and later signed a memorandum on disaster management with the U.S. military stationed in Japan. Last November, Japan and the United States conducted a joint disaster management drill.
神奈川県横須賀市は06年6月に米原子力空母の配備を容認した。その後、在日米海軍と防災覚書を締結し、昨年11月には日米合同の防災訓練を実施している。

A high-ranking U.S. Navy officer says that the navy's philosophy is to swiftly deal with any matter while it is still small to prevent it from developing into a major problem. To accomplish this, the two nations should make further efforts to establish a relationship of trust through joint drills and candid exchanges of opinions.
米海軍高官は「出来事が小さなうちに迅速に対処し、大きな問題になるのを防ぐのが、我々の哲学だ」と語る。そのためには、日米双方が、合同訓練や率直な意見交換を通じて、信頼関係を構築する努力が大切だろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 26, 2008)
(2008年9月26日01時45分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-26 09:12 | 英字新聞

政治報道の危機

(Mainichi Japan) September 25, 2008
Poor political reportage promotes poor politics and politicians
ぶら下がりの虚像

Taro Aso, who was elected prime minister on Wednesday, shares his deep feelings with a close friend: "I don't think ordinary people understand the anguish of extremely rich people."
 今日、首相に選出される麻生太郎氏は、心を許した相手には「とてつもない金持ちに生まれた人間の苦しみなんて普通の人には分からんだろうな」としんみり語る。

Even though Aso occasionally assumes a persona where he "pretends" to be a bad guy, it appears that this is actually his true nature.

The way he considers himself to be someone born to a special fate, and his confidence that he has experienced hardships that nobody else knows reveal a deep psychological condition.
How he will control the government appears likely to depend on this warped self-confidence.
 時に偽悪家ぶるところがあるが、これは率直な気持ちだろう。自分を特別な運命に生まれたと信じる自惚(うぬぼ)れと、人知れぬ苦労も積んだという負けん気は、新首相の深層心理をうかがわせて興味深い。今後の政権運営は、この屈折した自負心が左右する気がする。

I talk about such a thing because I wondered why Yasuo Fukuda, who resigned as prime minister on Wednesday, had decided to dump his government in an irresponsible manner and later acted selfishly. It all leads to the conclusion that he was not qualified to be prime minister. Many political reporters realized this fact, but did they clearly report it?
 こんな話を持ち出すのは、今日で首相を終える福田康夫氏の無責任な政権放り出しと、その後の身勝手な言動に考え込んでしまったからだ。首相の器でなかったということに尽きるが、政治記者の多くは、そのことを知っていた。でも、それをきちんと伝えたか。

After Fukuda announced his decision to resign, the Mainichi Shimbun reported that as early as April he was tired of being prime minister. Nevertheless, the Mainichi Shimbun at the same time carried other articles saying that the prime minister was enthusiastic about his work.
Even though Fukuda displayed a mixture of aggressive and feeble attitudes, I cannot help but admit that these reports were incorrect. This is because the reporters failed to get to the bottom of Fukuda's real intentions and simply believed what his aides said.
 退陣表明後、弊紙は福田氏が4月には嫌気が差していたと報じた。ところが、当時の紙面を繰ってみると、「首相は意欲満々」と何度も書いている。強気と弱気が交錯していたにせよ、誤報と認めざるを得ない。

Since Junichiro Koizumi was in office, brief interviews with the prime ministers at their office, which were limited to twice a day, had continued for seven years. This set a bad precedent for political reporters who have now come to believe that such brief interviews are enough to write articles.
Reporters were criticized for failing to ask tough questions during the news conference at which Fukuda announced his decision to resign because they were asking questions as if the news conference was just another one of the brief interviews at the prime minister's office.
People often talk about the political crisis, but it's largely because of the crisis of political news coverage. (By Tomonaga Ito, Political News Writer, Mainichi Shimbun)
 本人の実像に迫れず、秘書官らの煙幕をうのみにしたせいだ。小泉政権で昼夕2度に制限された首相への「ぶら下がり」。7年も続き、あれで済ますのが記者の悪弊になった。突っ込み不足と不評だった福田氏の退陣会見も「ぶら下がり」の延長だったからではないか。政治の危機と言うが、半分は政治報道の危機だろう。【伊藤智永】

毎日新聞 2008年9月24日 東京朝刊
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2008-09-25 14:09 | 英字速報