Is the election in 2014 too much work in Japan?
Money used for elections
Elections take up a lot of tax money.
The amount will reach 60 billion yen. There are some people that think that this amount is justified and some that don’t.
For example, if you add 50 ml juice to a 100 ml cup, some people will see it as a “glass half full” and some as a “glass half empty”, which is the same thing. Thinking positively or negatively.
“An election shouldn’t be held”
When asked in one questionnaire “what do you think about the prime minister dissolving the lower house?”, 70% of people said that it was “inappropriate”.
Of course, this questionnaire wasn’t distributed to everyone. It’s also impossible to say 100% that the third party that aggregated these results isn’t without bias. Even so, it looks like most people think that there shouldn’t be an election.
So, here is an illustration drawn from the point of view of those who believe that this election isn’t appropriate. Let’s have a look.
The candidates are depicted as robots. It’s as if whichever candidate is chosen, they both look the same.
However, even if the candidates are both robots, the money that was used for the election is our tax money.
Here they are drawn at a cash register while out shopping.
We’ve gathered some other reasons why people may not think it’s appropriate to hold an election right now.
・The opposition parties only argue against the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and have no viable alternatives of their own.
・After what happened when the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) were elected, no party other than the LDP can be trusted.
・We mustn’t stop Abenomics and we mustn’t entrust it to a different party.
“An election should be held”
Next let’s look at the illustration from the point of view of those who do think that an election is appropriate.
This time we were told that “the election wouldn’t take much work” but, a lot of “work” has already been written about on the internet and we’ve collected as much of it here as possible. We’ve illustrated the most persuasive arguments.
On the left hand scale is the state of affairs after the rise to a 10% consumption tax. Life (eg. food) is tough but there is plenty of social security.
Deputy Prime Minister Aso is friendly with the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Finance are hoping to raise consumption tax quickly. It seems that the Ministry of Finance is currently trying to persuade the candidates to raise the tax swiftly.
Conversely, on the right hand scale is the state of affairs should the rise in consumption tax be postponed or cancelled.
Life has continued as before but social security is in a critical state.
Prime Minister Abe wants to increase consumption tax ever since he started to put the economy first, so he wants to postpone the rise if possible.
However it seems that there is a lot of pressure coming from the Ministry of Finance so he may be trying to hold the election and gain the support of the massive amount of people in favor of postponement.
Which means that the point of the election is to postpone the rise in consumption tax.
Prime Minister Abe is appealing for companies to utilize women as a labor resource.
However, women employees have to make the hard choice between whether they want to carry on working, have a child, or do both.
We’ve collected many other reasons why people think an election is appropriate right now.
・Scrapping the tax clause
*Since the economy isn’t looking so good, consumption tax can’t be increased. However, social security (such as pensions and child rearing) funds are insufficient so that money needs to be prepared whatever the state of the economy. However it’s too early to raise tax again in October 2015, so the government will wait to see if it’s possible in April 2017 and may go through with the rise regardless of the state of the economy anyway.
・A standard term for the lower house is 4 years so Abe’s 4 years began when he took office in December 2012 and will end in 2016. If he wins this election though, his term will restart from 2014 and he can stay in office until 2018 instead.
・2 women cabinet ministers have already quit so Abe would like to start anew.
・As the right to collective self-defence and nuclear energy will become hot topics next year (because of changes to legislation), it’s predicted that Abe’s approval rating will drop. Therefore it’s better to dissolve the lower house and increase approval ratings before that happens.
・Until now, Abe’s economic strategy, “Abenomics”, has yielded positive results and now cannot be withdrawn. Other political parties can’t emulate this economic strategy so the LDP would like to win while they’re ahead.
・If the government can’t raise the consumption tax as planned, banks and investors may begin to doubt the government’s financial status. Since the banks and investors hold all the national debt, if the government cannot implement it’s economic strategies as planned, they will begin to worry that they won’t get their money back and may try and return the debt back to the government. If that happens interest rates will rise, making the loans on cars and houses rise as well, making life difficult for the average citizen. Then the economy will get even worse. So it’s imperative to follow the economic strategy to plan to gain trust and leave a good impression.
Of course LDP Prime Minister Abe dissolved the lower house and called a snap election because he will win whatever happens.
However, if tax money must be used, we should do our best to seize this election chance positively, rather than just looking at it negatively.
If you agree with the LDP you should vote for them to continue in office,
Or if you’re against the LDP, you should either vote for another party, vote for a different candidate, or try to persuade those around you.
You shouldn’t just go on a demonstration, you should have reasons as to why they should vote for the party you like properly prepared and you should be able to talk about it
If you plan not to vote, you don’t want to vote, or you plan to cast a blank vote, that is your own choice and is fine if you won’t have any regrets in the future. Voting isn’t an obligation, it’s a privilege.