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Election thoughts

Date Posted: 2001-07-21

The biggest obstacle to reform in Japan is the power that un-elected ministerial officials wield over the Japanese people. Democracy is supposed to be an open process that allows all people to participate in government. Secret back room meetings by nameless and unaccountable bureaucrats have been undermining democracy in Japan since the beginning of the Meiji restoration.

In order to control what little power that elected politicians have in Japan, the ministries have been using their non-appropriated funds to place their own "yes men" into elected positions. These politicians always vote to increase the power of their bureaucratic bosses and always vote to keep extreme secrecy in government particularly involving the decision making process.

Any Japanese voter, who truly believes in democracy and would sincerely like to see reforms made, should carefully consider the backgrounds of those that they vote for. Any candidate with a bureaucratic background should be highly suspect. Any incumbent politician who has ever voted to crush, delay, or water down in any way the freedom of information bill, should be considered a ministry crony an voted out of office.

The people of Japan should understand that democracy is not something that should be taken for granted. They must be constantly vigilant, vote in every election, and be prepared to cry, "foul" if they witness any type of political wrongdoing.

Best of luck to all my Japanese friends,
Kevin N Mara

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