« 2008年9月 | トップページ | 2008年11月 »

2008年10月

2008年10月31日 (金)

リニア新幹線

2008/10/31--The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 30(IHT/Asahi: October 31,2008)

EDITORIAL: Maglev Shinkansen plan

リニア新幹線―大いなる期待と懸念

Plans for the magnetically levitated (maglev) Chuo Shinkansen by Central Japan Railway Co. (JR Tokai) are starting to move forward. The company submitted the results of its survey to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, saying it is possible to build the railway in a straight route through the Southern Japanese Alps.

 JR東海によるリニア中央新幹線の計画が動き出した。同社が「南アルプスを貫く直線ルートでの建設が可能」との調査結果を国土交通省に報告した。

JR Tokai will now look into technical and economic viability and advance procedures to obtain approval. The company plans to start construction within two to three years and open the line in 2025.

今後は技術や採算を調査し、認可手続きを進める。2~3年内に着工し25年開業をめざすという。 

The superconductive maglev train, which holds the world speed record in rail travel at 581 kph, is a product of advanced transportation technology. In the envisioned commercial operation, it will link Tokyo and Nagoya in 40 to 50 minutes, traveling at a maximum speed of 500 kph. There are also future plans to extend the line to Osaka.

 この超伝導リニアモーターカーは、鉄道の世界最高速度、時速581キロの記録をもつ夢の高速技術だ。営業では最高時速500キロで東京~名古屋間を40~50分で結ぶ。将来は大阪までの延伸も想定している。 

The construction cost between Tokyo and Nagoya is estimated at 5 trillion yen. JR Tokai said it will cover the entire cost by itself without relying on government subsidies.

 東京~名古屋の建設費は約5兆円。JR東海は政府の補助金に頼らず、すべて独力でまかなうという。 

Since 1987, when the former Japanese National Railways was broken up and privatized, none of the JR companies has built a Shinkansen line on its own. Although JR Tokai has a solid financial base with its lucrative Tokaido Shinkansen service, building the maglev line on its own would show the positive results of privatization.

 JR発足後も新幹線を自前で建設した例はない。JR東海は稼ぎ頭の東海道新幹線を抱えていて体力があるとはいえ、リニアを自力建設できるなら民営化の成果といえよう。 

The potential economic effects of the maglev train service are enormous. If the major urban areas of Tokyo and Nagoya are directly linked and the line is extended to Osaka, the three cities could form a single economic bloc that includes Kansai.

 リニアの経済効果はきわめて大きい。東・名の大都市圏が直結し、大阪まで延伸すれば関西を含めて一つの経済圏になりうる。

If Tokyo and Osaka can be linked within an hour or so, air travelers could shift to the maglev service, allowing Haneda Airport in Tokyo to increase the number of international flights and strengthen its role as the gateway to Tokyo by air.

東~阪が1時間程度になれば空の客がリニアへ移り、羽田空港に国際線の増便余地が生まれて「空の玄関」も強化できる。 

In 2025, the Tokaido Shinkansen Line will be over 60 years old. If the line's operation is suspended due to major repair work or disasters such as earthquakes, the maglev line would serve as a bypass.

 東海道新幹線が25年には還暦を過ぎる。大補修や大地震で止まったときにリニアはバイパス役を果たす。 

The world's first superconductive maglev technology is expected to revitalize Japanese industries. Countries around the world are taking a new look at railway services, which are more energy-efficient than transportation by airplanes and cars. Already, there is an investment rush. The maglev project can lead the move.

 世界初の超伝導リニア技術は、日本の産業を活性化させると期待できる。航空や自動車よりエネルギー効率がいい鉄道は世界各国で見直され、投資ラッシュが始まっている。リニアはそのリード役にもなるだろう。 

Although the project may be undertaken by a private company, railways have a major impact on national life, the economy and society, and are highly public in nature.

 ただし、民間会社の事業といっても国民生活や経済社会に与える影響はきわめて大きく、公共性が高い。

The government and related organizations must properly check the validity of the plan and advance it with the consent of the public as well as related local governments.

計画の妥当性を政府や関係機関がきちんとチェックし、国民や関係自治体の合意のもとに進めねばならない。 

We urge JR Tokai to listen to the views of users, local governments and the business world and establish a forum to discuss the problems from various viewpoints, such as traffic and industrial policies.

 利用者や自治体、経済界など幅広い層から意見を聴き、交通政策や産業政策などさまざまな観点から議論する場を設けるべきだろう。 

Local governments, including Nagano Prefecture, are intent on bringing the line and building stations within their jurisdictions. Japan has a bitter history of allowing politics tied to special interests to interfere with railway construction.

 長野県など自治体はルートや駅の誘致に関心が強く、ややもすると利害調整に追われやすい。利権政治が鉄道建設に介入を繰り返した苦い歴史もある。

What kind of railway network will befit Japan in the 21st century? We urge the parties concerned to discuss how the development of the country and domestic industries should be from a broad perspective.

21世紀の日本にふさわしい鉄道網とは何か。国土や産業のあり方などを幅広く議論してほしい。 

Of course, since this is a challenge that uses new technology, there are many concerns.

 もちろん、初の技術への挑戦だけに、心配も尽きない。 

Can safety be secured? Will the technology really have no negative effect on the health of passengers and residents who live along the route? What about the impact on the environment of the Southern Alps?

 安全は確保されるのか。乗客や沿線住民の健康面は本当に大丈夫か。南アルプスの環境に悪影響はないか。

And at a time when the population is declining, can the line really be profitable?

これから人口減少が進むなかで、採算性に心配はないか。

Although JR Tokai says it will cover the construction cost by itself, much of the funds will come from fares paid by passengers. If the plan fails, it could cause great damage to the nation.

自前とはいえ、建設費の大元は乗客が払う運賃だ。失敗したら、国民的な損失は大きい。 

In order to make the dream come true, JR Tokai is responsible for dispelling such concerns and winning public understanding.

 夢を現実のものにするためにも、このような懸念を一掃し、国民を納得させる責任がJR東海にはある。 

| | コメント (0)

衆院解散先送り

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Oct. 31, 2008)

Aso faces tough battle with choices he made

衆院解散先送り 一段と厳しさを増す政権運営(1031日付・読売社説)

Prime Minister Taro Aso has chosen financial and economic stimulus measures over a dissolution of the House of Representatives. To deal with the global financial crisis, which Aso described as a one that happens only once in a century, the government must implement measures quickly.

 麻生首相は、「衆院解散よりも、金融・景気対策」を選びとった。首相の言う「百年に一度」の世界的な金融危機に対応するためには、スピード感をもって対策を実行していかねばならない。

With the lower house dissolution and a general election, which is now almost certain to be delayed from the generally expected date of Nov. 30, the Democratic Party of Japan will inevitably intensify its confrontational strategy toward the government and the ruling parties become in the Diet. Aso's handling of the government will increasingly tough. The question is if he can survive this.

 しかし、衆院解散・総選挙の見送りにより、民主党が国会での抵抗戦術を強めるのは必至だ。首相の政権運営は一段と厳しさを増すが、首相はこれを乗り切ることができるのか。

 ◆危機の克服に全力で◆

At a press conference Thursday, Aso said he does not, for now, intend to dissolve the lower house to call a general election.

 首相は30日の記者会見で、「11月30日投開票」が想定されていた衆院解散について、当面、見送る意向を表明した。

===

Aid a distressed economy

The U.S.-triggered financial crisis is rocking the global financial system. The Tokyo stock market has been volatile, with the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average earlier this week plummeting below its lowest close since the burst of the economic bubble. The yen, meanwhile, has been appreciating against the dollar.

 米国発の金融危機が、世界の金融システムに動揺をもたらしている。東京市場も、株価が急落し、バブル後の最安値を一時更新するなど、乱高下を繰り返している。円高傾向も続いている。

Some regional financial institutions have grown reluctant to extend loans, which is hurting the real economy.

 地方金融機関の中には「貸し渋り」の動きもあらわれ、実体経済にも悪影響を与えている。

According to The Yomiuri Shimbun's and other opinion surveys, more and more people favor a delay in a dissolution of the lower house, feeling that the top priority should be economic measures to boost the economy. Aso's decision apparently took into consideration these public views.

 読売新聞などの世論調査では、景気政策を優先する立場からの解散先送り論が強まっている。首相の判断は、これらを総合的に勘案した結果といえよう。

It is reasonable that Aso unveiled at Thursday's press conference a large additional economic stimulus package to stop the economy from stalling.

 首相が記者会見で、大型の追加景気対策を打ち出したのは、日本経済の失速に歯止めをかけるために、当然のことだ。

The additional stimulus package incorporates a provision of 2 trillion yen in fixed-sum benefits to all households, a substantial reduction of expressway tolls, expansion of housing loan tax cuts and the allocation of 1 trillion yen to local governments from the government's road-related tax revenues, which currently are earmarked for road-related projects and scheduled to be freed for general purposes from fiscal 2009.

 追加対策には、総額で2兆円に上る定額給付金を全世帯に支給することや、高速道路料金の大幅な引き下げ、住宅ローン減税の拡充、一般財源化する道路特定財源から地方へ1兆円を交付することなどが盛り込まれている。

The government must incorporate, among the measures in the package, those that need urgent implementation in the second supplementary draft budget for fiscal 2008, and have them passed together with relevant bills in the Diet at an early date.

 政府は、対策の中で実施を急ぐべき項目を第2次補正予算案に反映させ、関連法案とともに早期成立を図らねばならない。

On Wednesday, the U.S. Federal Reserve Board slashed its key federal funds rate by half a percentage point to a record low of 1 percent.

 米連邦準備制度理事会(FRB)は29日、短期金利の指標となるフェデラル・ファンド(FF)金利を0・5%引き下げて、史上最低の年1%とした。

Each country is doing its utmost to staunch the financial crisis and avoid a worldwide recession. A series of international conferences to address the issue will be held in November, including an emergency meeting of leaders of the Group of Eight major nations and emerging countries, and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum summit meeting.

 各国とも、金融危機を抑制し、世界の同時不況を回避しようと懸命になっている。11月には、G8(主要8か国)と新興国による緊急首脳会議や、アジア太平洋経済協力会議(APEC)首脳会議などが相次いで開かれる。

At Thursday's press conference, Aso indicated he would talk with these leaders on issues such as international cooperation in strengthening supervision and regulations on financial institutions.

 麻生首相は記者会見で、金融機関の監督・規制の強化などに関する国際連携のあり方について各国首脳と協議する考えを示した。

===

Timing a tricky gamble

 ◆難しい総選挙の時期◆

Postponing the lower house dissolution, however, is a big gamble for the prime minister.

 ただ、衆院解散先送りは、首相にとって大きな賭けである。

Shortly after his election as Liberal Democratic Party president, Aso suggested at the outset of the extraordinary Diet session the possibility of dissolving the lower house, saying he intended to fight it out in an election with the Democratic Party of Japan, led by Ichiro Ozawa.

 首相は、自民党総裁に選ばれた直後、小沢代表が率いる民主党との間で雌雄を決するとして、今国会の冒頭解散を示唆していた。

But the financial crisis spread further than anticipated as Aso hesitated on such a dissolution due to unsatisfactory Cabinet approval ratings and disappointing results for the LDP in surveys on the prospects of the party weathering a general election.

 だが、内閣支持率の動向や自民党の選挙情勢調査の結果などから解散をためらううち、予測以上に金融危機が拡大した。

Aso decided not to dissolve the lower house largely because the financial crisis, as seen in plummeting stock prices, made it difficult for him to choose any other course of action.

 今回の「解散せず」の判断は、株価急落など金融危機に手足を縛られた側面も大きい。

With an eye to an early dissolution of the lower house, the DPJ has so far cooperated with the ruling bloc in Diet deliberations, helping to pass the first supplementary budget.

 これまで民主党は、早期解散を期待して、第1次補正予算に賛成するなど審議に協力してきた。

However, the opposition party then suddenly made an about-face, trying to delay voting on a bill to revise the new Antiterrorism Law designed to extend the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling activities in the Indian Ocean.

It is regrettable to see the party adopting such extremely opportunistic tactics.

 だが、インド洋での海上自衛隊による給油活動延長のための新テロ対策特別措置法改正案の採決は、一転して先延ばしした。ご都合主義きわまる対応だ。

As to the bill to revise the Law on Special Measures for Strengthening Financial Functions, which aims at stabilizing regional financial institutions with public fund injections, the DPJ seems set on delaying the vote through "careful deliberations."

Given these circumstances, the government and the ruling parties are expected to face tough times managing the Diet from here on.

 地方金融機関に公的資金を注入できるようにする金融機能強化法改正案についても、「慎重審議」の構えで、今後の国会運営は、難航が予想される。

The prime minister is believed to be closely watching how the DPJ reacts to the second supplementary budget as he seeks the best timing for dissolving the lower house.

 首相は、第2次補正予算案に対する民主党の出方を見極めたうえで、衆院解散・総選挙の時期を探る考えのようだ。

If the prime minister gives up on dissolving the lower house by the end of the year and instead dissolves it at the outset of the next ordinary Diet session early next year, it will be impossible to pass the fiscal 2009 budget by the end of March, when the current fiscal year ends. If this happens, the government will be forced to compile a provisional budget.

This would ruin the reputation of the Aso Cabinet, which has put its top priority on improving the economy.

 仮に首相が年内解散をせずに、通常国会の冒頭解散に打って出たとしても、来年度予算の今年度中の成立は不可能になり、暫定予算の編成に追い込まれてしまう。これでは「景気」を第一とする麻生内閣の看板が問われる。

Meanwhile, the ruling bloc as a whole is split over delaying the lower house dissolution.

 一方、与党内にも、解散先送りに反発が出ている。

New Komeito, which has been calling for an early dissolution, reportedly fought against any delay in the dissolution schedule until the last minute.

 早期解散を主張してきた公明党は、先送りに最後まで抵抗したとされる。

If relations between the LDP and New Komeito begin to sour because of the postponement, it may affect the two parties' cooperation in the upcoming lower house election.

自民、公明両党間にすきま風が吹けば衆院選での選挙協力にも影響しかねない。

===

Strong decision on tax hike

 ◆消費税引き上げの勇断◆

The ordinary Diet session this year saw a series of political battles in the divided Diet, under which the opposition bloc controls the House of Councillors and the ruling parties hold a majority in the lower house.

 今年の通常国会では、衆参ねじれの下、政争が繰り返された。

However, such a political breakdown must not be repeated amid the current economic turmoil.

現在の金融危機で、政治の機能不全を再現させる訳にはいかない。

Partisanship has no place in this financial crisis. It is important for the parties to join hands in order to urgently put together necessary policies and measures.

 金融危機対応では、与党も野党もあるまい。必要な施策を迅速に具体化するため、各党は力を合わせることが大事だ。

In his press conference, Aso made clear his intention to raise the consumption tax.

"After carrying out drastic administrative reform and taking into account the economic situation, I'd like to ask [the public for its understanding for the need] to raise the consumption tax in three year's time," he said.

 首相は記者会見で「大胆な行政改革を行った後、経済状況をみたうえで3年後に消費税の引き上げをお願いしたい」と明言した。

In order to overcome the current turmoil in the Japanese economy, which Aso previously described as "requiring three years for full recovery," and to carry out such responsible policies as those he announced in the press conference, we need a stable political framework.

 「日本経済は全治3年」という状況を脱し、こうした責任ある政策を実行していくためには、やはり安定した政治の枠組みづくりが肝要だ。

The prime minister should call an election as early as possible to seek a voter mandate.

 首相は、できるだけ早期に国民の信を問う必要があるだろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 31, 2008)

200810310145  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

追加経済対策

(Mainichi Japan) October 30, 2008

2 trillion yen in household benefits, cheaper expressways part of new stimulus package

追加経済対策:株買い取り拡大 雇用保険料率0.8%に下げ--財政支出5兆円規模

A total of 2 trillion yen in household benefits and unlimited use on expressways for 1,000 yen on weekends are part of the government's latest plans for additional economic stimulus measures.

The government and the ruling coalition on Wednesday compiled the final draft of additional economic measures in a bid to combat the worsening economy and global financial crisis. Prime Minister Taro Aso officially announced the steps on Thursday.

Based on the plans, the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and coalition partner Komeito will shortly devise the second supplementary budget draft for fiscal 2008 to facilitate the additional economic measures and will ask the government to submit the budget draft to the current Diet session.

The government and the ruling coalition will also consider extending the current Diet session, slated to close at the end of November, as opposition parties are likely to demand thorough deliberations on the budget draft and prolong the discussions.

The planned additional measures will require total government spending of nearly 5 trillion yen, largely surpassing that of the 2 trillion yen economic stimulus package decided by the government at the end of August. However, the latest plan will clearly state that the additional economic measures will not rely on the issuance of deficit-covering bonds as their financial source.

Under the planned measures, a total of 2 trillion yen in benefits will be made available to all households in the form of cash or coupons through local governments. The amount of benefits to be distributed to each household will be further discussed. The plan is a substitute for the originally planned fixed-rate income tax cuts.

The planned measures will also enable unlimited use of expressways for 1,000 yen on weekends and national holidays for users of the electronic toll collection (ETC) system. If approved, the discount tolls will be applied from sometime in fiscal 2008 to fiscal 2010.

As part of other measures, the Banks' Shareholdings Purchase Corp. (BSPC) and other public institutions may purchase large quantities of stocks. BSPC has so far purchased about 1.6 trillion yen worth of mutual shares between banks and business corporations since its establishment in 2002 until April 2006. The ruling coalition is considering further expanding the role of the BSPC and enabling it to purchase up to 10 trillion yen worth of shares.

Also planned is a reduction in the premium rate of employment insurance, from the current 1.2 percent of annual income (in equal shares by employer and employee) to 0.8 percent in fiscal 2009. That will reduce the monthly premium for an employee whose salary is 300,000 yen a month from 1,800 yen to 1,200 yen.

 政府・与党は29日、景気悪化や金融危機に対応した「追加経済対策」の最終案をまとめた。全世帯を対象に総額2兆円の給付金を支給するほか、新たに株価下支え策として公的機関による大規模な株式買い取り策を検討する方針を盛り込む見通し。雇用保険の年収に対する保険料率(現行1・2%、労使折半)を09年度は0・4ポイント引き下げて0・8%に軽減し、高速道路料金の引き下げも盛り込む。国の財政支出は5兆円弱と、政府が8月末に決めた経済対策(約2兆円)を大きく上回る。事業規模も20兆円に達する見通しだ。財源として赤字国債を発行しないことを明記する。

 麻生太郎首相が30日正式発表する。自民、公明両党は、中小企業対策などを中心に裏付けとなる08年度第2次補正予算案を早期に編成し、今国会に提出するよう要請する。野党側の徹底審議方針で難航も予想され、政府・与党は11月末に迫る今国会会期の大幅延長も検討する。

 銀行等保有株式取得機構などを活用した大規模な株式買い取り案は、株価急落を受けて急きょ盛り込まれる方向となった。02年設立の同機構は政府保証付き借り入れで調達した資金で、06年4月までに銀行と事業会社の持ち合い株約1・6兆円分を購入した実績がある。政府は同機構による株式買い取りを再開・拡大する方針。

 失業手当などを給付する雇用保険の保険料率軽減で見込まれる所要財源6400億円は、約5兆円(08年度)を見込む同保険の積立金を充てる。従業員負担分の保険料率軽減幅は0・2%で、月収30万円の人の場合、月額保険料が1800円から1200円になる。

 高速道路料金の引き下げは、休日(土日祝日)に1回1000円で「走り放題」にする割引の導入などが柱。08年度中に始め、10年度まで続ける予定だ。対象は、自動料金収受システム(ETC)の利用者。目玉の「2兆円支給」は当初、定額減税とする方針だったが、早期実現を優先し、現金かクーポンによる給付に変更。99年の「地域振興券」(原則1人2万円)をモデルに所得制限を設けず、市町村を通じて支給する。世帯当たりの額などは今後詰める。【堀井恵里子、清水憲司】

==============

 ◆政府の追加経済対策の概要◆

 <生活者支援>

・所得制限なく全世帯に総額2兆円給付

・介護、雇用、少子化対策の各種基金設立

・雇用保険料引き下げで労使負担軽減

・非正規雇用者の正規雇用化支援

・過去最大規模の住宅ローン減税

 <金融・経済対策>

・銀行等保有株式取得機構などを活用した大規模な株式買い取りの検討

・金融機関への予防的公的資金投入を可能にする金融機能強化法の復活

・信用保証制度の大幅拡充による中小企業の資金繰り支援徹底

・中小企業の軽減税率の時限的引き下げ

・省エネ投資促進減税

 <地域活性化>

・道路特定財源から1兆円を地方財源に

・高速道路料金の大幅値下げ

・地方自治体に「地域経済対策臨時交付金」

 <財源・その他>

・赤字国債は発行せず、特別会計の準備金などを活用

・社会保障の安定財源確保へ消費税を含む税制改革中期プログラム策定

毎日新聞 20081030日 東京朝刊

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月30日 (木)

汚染ハム販売

2008/10/30--The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 29(IHT/Asahi: October 30,2008)

EDITORIAL: Itoham cyanide scare

伊藤ハム―企業倫理へのきつい教訓

To our horror and disgust, yet another food-related scandal has surfaced.

 また食品会社か。そうあきれたくなるような出来事だ。 

This time, cyanide compounds exceeding standards established under the water supply law were detected from spring water used in the production of wieners and prepared pizza products at a Chiba Prefecture factory of Itoham Foods Inc.

 千葉県にある伊藤ハムの工場で、ウインナーやピザをつくる時に使っていた地下水から、基準を超すシアン化合物が検出された。 

A "responsible" food maker would have stopped using the water and switched to a different aquifer, or suspended production until the problem had been sorted out. But at Itoham's factory, nothing of the sort was done. The company kept using the same spring water and distributing its products around the nation for about three weeks.

 ふつうならば、ここで汚染された水を使うのをやめ、別の井戸の水に切り替えたり、生産を一時停止して点検したりするところだろう。ところが、この工場は何の手も打たないまま、その後も約3週間にわたり、同じ水で商品をつくり、全国へ向けて出荷し続けていた。 

We cannot understand how a food industry giant like Itoham could have been so callous. How could it have ignored the most basic concerns for food safety and hygiene? We can only conclude that the company must have thrown corporate ethics out the window and stopped caring.

 食品を扱う大手企業でありながら、理解しがたい対応である。なぜ安全や衛生という最も大切な問題を軽んじてしまったのか。企業倫理を忘れ、緊張感に欠けていたとしか思えない。 

An Itoham representative noted that when above-permissible levels of cyanide compounds were first detected from the spring water, the person in charge at the Chiba factory assumed the test results "had to be wrong" because they defied all previous inspection data.

 会社側の説明によると、それまでの地下水の検査で異常な値が出ていなかったため、初めは工場の担当者が「検査の数値が異常ではないのか」と思ってしまったらしい。 

But this was emphatically not a situation that warranted such an arbitrary assumption or inaction. We cannot stress enough that the food items being made with that water were quite popular around the nation, especially among children.

 だが、「大丈夫だろう」という勝手な思いこみや油断が許されるはずもない。汚染された水を使って生産していたのは、どこの食卓にも並び、子どもも好んで口にする食べ物なのだ。 

When the company finally had follow-up inspections done, the results kept showing above-legal levels of cyanide compounds. And yet, the company kept the findings under wraps.

 案の定、再検査を重ねたところ、基準を超す値が続けて出た。 

 その間、シアン化合物が検出されたことは公表されなかった。 

In explaining why the company failed to take proactive steps, the Itoham representative cited poor in-house communication--namely, that the water quality problem was never relayed from the factory to the head office.

But surely, is it not the responsibility of any food manufacturer to make absolutely sure that every worker lives up to the strictest standards of safety and hygiene?

 対応が後手に回った理由として会社側は、社内の連絡態勢の悪さを挙げた。水質に問題があるという情報が工場から本社に伝わらなかったというのだ。だが、安全や衛生への意識を現場の隅々にまで徹底させるのは企業としての責任ではないか。 

When any doubts arise about product quality, necessary steps must be taken at once, and even damaging disclosures ought to be made. For having neglected to do so, Itoham now has a huge price to pay.

 品質にかかわる問題があれば、すぐに必要な対策をとる。不利な情報も隠さず公表する。それを怠った伊藤ハムが支払うツケは大きい。 

The company kept using the contaminated spring water for the production of 26 types of food items totaling about 3.31 million units, all of which had to be recalled and trashed. The scandal has not only inconvenienced retailers around the nation, but it will inevitably hurt the company's image and seriously affect sales.

 汚染された水を使い続けた間に生産された商品は、26品目、約331万個にものぼる。この膨大な商品を回収せざるをえなくなり、せっかくの食品を無駄にすることになる。全国の小売店にも迷惑をかける。企業イメージは傷つき、売り上げが落ち込むことも避けられまい。 

The string of food-related scandals, which started a few years ago, shows no sign of ending. Unsuspecting consumers have been deceived about the origins of the food they buy, and been sold items labeled with falsified "eat-by" dates.

Some food companies have been driven into bankruptcy or voluntary closure for failing to deal appropriately with their scandals.

 ここ数年、食品会社の不祥事は後を絶たない。産地の偽装もあれば、賞味期限の改ざんも目立つ。問題を起こしたあとの対応を誤り、倒産や廃業に追い込まれた企業もある。 

Did Itoham not learn anything from these past examples? Thankfully, the cyanide scare does not seem to have caused any health problems among consumers. But in terms of proper corporate behavior, there are many lessons to be learned.

 そうした過去の経験から、伊藤ハムはいったい何を学んだのか。 

 今回は健康に影響が出ることはなさそうだが、企業のあり方という点で、くむべき教訓は多い。 

The longer a company ignores a problem, the graver the problem will grow, as will the consequences. The Itoham scandal reminds us anew of this obvious truth, which applies to all fields of industry.

 対応が遅れれば遅れるほど傷口が広がり、企業の打撃は大きくなる。業界を問わず、そんな当たり前のことを改めて、この不祥事は教えている。 

| | コメント (0)

教員免許更新制

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Oct. 30, 2008)

Restoring public trust by teaching the teachers

教員免許更新制 信頼回復の原点に立ち返れ(1030日付・読売社説)

A teaching license renewal system will be instituted from next fiscal year. No effort should be spared in its preparations so the system can help restore public confidence in teachers--the original goal that prompted its introduction.

 来年度から始まる教員免許更新制の実施にあたっては、教員への信頼を回復するという原点に立ち返るべきだ。そのためには、入念な準備を怠ってはなるまい。

Under the new system, licenses for primary, middle and high school teachers will be good for only 10 years, regardless of whether teachers work at public or private institutions. Teachers will need to take training courses for at least 30 hours and pass a test to be certified as having completed the training program every 10 years. Teachers who fail to do so will have their license revoked.

 更新制では、国公私立を問わず、小中高校などの教員免許に10年の有効期限が設けられる。10年に一度、最低30時間の講習を受け、試験で修了認定を得なければ、免許は失効する。

Universities, which will offer such training courses, are providing trial preparatory training courses this fiscal year. Experience gleaned from these test runs can help universities devise effective training courses next fiscal year.

 講習を実施する各大学は今年度、本番に生かすため、「予備講習」を試行している。

According to a report compiled this month by the Education, Science and Technology Ministry about universities offering such preparatory courses, providing a training course to a mixed group of primary, middle and high school teachers is largely ineffective because the content of even the same subject differs widely between each level of schooling. Holding such classes will only dissatisfy training course instructors and attendees.

The report also found many of those courses do not include exercises or practical training.

 文部科学省が今月まとめた各大学の報告書によると、同じ教科でも小中高校では内容がかなり異なるため、一緒の講習では、教える側にも受講する側にも不満が強く、効果的ではない。演習や実習を伴わない講義も多い。

===

Make course content relevant

According to universities that post attendees' evaluations of such courses on their Web sites, the degree of attendee satisfaction differs depending on the course.

 受講者の評価を公表している大学のホームページを見ると、講習によって満足度に差がある。

The license renewal system is aimed at "making teachers acquire new knowledge and skills in accordance with the latest situation surrounding [the nation's] education." However, only a handful of lectures will teach them how to deal with unofficial school Web sites operated by students or others, overly demanding parents and other problems plaguing schools now. It is essential that universities improve their courses.

 更新制の目的は「最新の教育事情に合わせ教員の知識・技能を刷新する」とされている。だが、学校裏サイト対策、保護者への対応など、学校でいま問題化している事態に対処できる講習は少ない。内容の充実が求められよう。

An estimated 100,000 teachers will go through training courses every year. Each class should be kept at a manageable size to prevent teachers from being stuck in large classes in which the instructor gives one-way lectures without getting feedback from attendees.

 対象は毎年10万人と見込まれている。大教室での一方通行の講義とならないよう、受講者数を適正な規模に絞ることも必要だ。

The initial objective when introducing the license renewal system was being considered was to weed out unqualified teachers. But it was decided later that unqualified teachers will be dealt with using other steps, such as requiring them to undergo training to improve their teaching techniques.

 更新制は当初、不適格教員の排除を目的に検討されていた。しかし、不適格教員には、指導改善研修を義務づけるなど、他の方法で対処することになった。

Training completion certification under the renewal system must only be granted if strict standards are met. In preparatory training courses, some teachers wrote only a few lines or did not respond at all to essay questions.

 だが、更新制でも厳正な修了認定は欠かせない。予備講習では、記述式問題で空欄やわずか数行の解答があったという。

===

Govt has role to play

The central government also should be a responsible player in this system. For example, it can check the content and quality of training courses based on evaluations given by teachers and other relevant factors, and scrutinize standards for granting training program completion certificates.

 国も、受講者の評価などに基づき講習の内容や質を点検し、修了認定の基準を精査するなど、責任を持つべきだ。

Each prefectural board of education already has provided training courses to public school teachers with 10 years of teaching experience. It is, therefore, necessary for all the parties involved in the process to coordinate so that the content of these training courses is not duplicated in those provided under the license renewal system.

The education ministry should consider unifying such programs in the future after reviewing with an open mind the effects of the license renewal system.

 公立校教員には、都道府県教育委員会の10年経験者研修などが既に行われている。内容の重複を避けるには調整が必要だ。文科省は、更新制開始後の状況を踏まえて柔軟に見直し、将来的には一本化も検討すべきだろう。

Attending the training program is expected to cost about 30,000 yen per person. It might be appropriate for the government to shoulder this cost because teachers are required to take the program under the new system that has been instituted by law revisions. The fact that no fee is required for training courses offered by each prefectural board of education also gives weight to calls to have the state foot the bill of attending the new courses.

 受講料は、1人3万円程度とされる。法改正で義務づけられた新たな制度の講習であり、教員の費用負担が不要の10年研修との整合性も考えれば、国による負担が妥当ではないか。

The new system will be introduced at a time when public distrust of teachers is deepening. Teachers should bear in mind that embracing a sincere attitude to acquiring knowledge and skills will constitute a step toward restoring public trust in them.

 更新制導入の背景には、教員への国民の不信感がある。講習で何を身につけるのか。取り組む教員の姿勢が、信頼回復への一歩となることも忘れてはならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 30, 2008)

200810300144  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

インドの核保有容認問題

(Mainichi Japan) October 29, 2008

International community 'approves' India's membership in the nuclear club

記者の目:国際社会の核保有インド「容認」=中尾卓司

The 30-year-old nuclear embargo against India, who is not a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and has been conducting nuclear experiments, was lifted last month, allowing India to officially import nuclear technology and atomic fuel. This is the same as the international community approving India's membership in the nuclear club. Without a doubt, this is an "NPT crisis." The result will certainly erode countries' motivation in taking the NPT seriously, as well as inflate the egos of countries such as North Korea and Iran who are suspected of engaging in nuclear activities. As the only country to have ever suffered from a nuclear attack, should Japan not play an active role in sustaining the NPT framework?

 核拡散防止条約(NPT)に加盟せず、核実験を実施したインドは先月、30年以上にわたる核関連の禁輸措置を解かれ、原発技術や核燃料を輸入できるようになった。これは核保有を不問にした点で国際社会がインドを核保有国と認めたに等しく、まさに「NPTの危機」だと思う。この結果、核不拡散にまじめに取り組む国々の意欲が減退し、核開発疑惑が続く北朝鮮やイランを増長させてしまう。唯一の被爆国・日本は、NPT体制維持に向け、積極的な役割を果たすべきではないか。

It all started in 2005 when the United States began negotiations to conclude a nuclear power pact with India with the aim of opening the channels for nuclear trade. The pact was signed and put into force on Oct. 10 this month. American industry, expecting to engage in nuclear business with India, backed the negotiations. The Bush administration was intent on putting the pact into effect during its tenure, which ends in January 2009, and urged Congress to hastily conclude debate on the issue. As if competing with the U.S., France also concluded a nuclear treaty with India last month, followed by Russia taking a turn at the negotiating table.

 今回の一連の動きの発端は、米国だった。米国は05年、インドとの核関連貿易を目指す米印原子力協定の交渉を開始。今月10日に正式署名して発効した。背景にあったのは、インドとの核ビジネスに期待する米産業界の意向だ。ブッシュ政権は来年1月までの任期内の協定発効にこだわり、米議会の審議も急がせていた。フランスも先月、米国と競い合うようにインドとの原子力協定を調印し、ロシアも交渉を進める。

The most difficult hurdle for the U.S. was the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) that controls nuclear-related exports. The NSG is a framework designed to prevent nuclear proliferation and was established on the occasion of India's nuclear test in 1974.The last two days of discussions at the extraordinary plenary session of the NSG held in Vienna last month continued until 2 a.m.

 米国にとって最大の関門は、核関連の輸出を規制する原子力供給国グループ(NSG、日本など参加45カ国)だった。NSGは、74年のインド核実験を機にできた、核拡散を防ぐための核取引規制の枠組みだ。ウィーンで開かれた9月の臨時NSG総会は、最終2日目の協議を午前2時まで続行する異例の展開だった。

Austria, New Zealand and other countries demanded that India "affirm the ban on nuclear testing." The U.S. invited representatives of the naysayer countries to a separate room, and pressed them, arguing, "Can we afford to lose an opportunity with India, a country of 1 billion people?" The overly cautious nations were overpowered by the U.S. and Japan was unable to stem the tide. Ultimately, on Sept. 6, the NSG had but to agree with the "exception" and approve the export of nuclear fuel and technology to a non-NPT India.

 この中でオーストリアやニュージーランドなどはインドに「核実験禁止の確約」などを要求。だが米国は別室に反対国の代表を呼び「人口10億人のインドを放置していいのか」と迫った。決定に慎重だった各国は米国に押し切られ、日本も歯止めの役割を果たせなかった。結局、NSGは9月6日、NPT非加盟国・インド向けに、核燃料・技術の輸出を認める「例外」措置を承認した。

The greatest problem here is that if India can import nuclear fuel for civil nuclear power generation, it can make use of its natural uranium to create nuclear weapons. Opponents point out that "India's capacity to produce nuclear weapons will expand from the current seven to a shocking 40-50 a year." The safeguard agreements that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) concluded with India this August would only include inspection of 14 of 22 Indian nuclear facilities.

 ここで何より問題なのは、民生用原子力発電に用いる核燃料を輸入できれば、インド産天然ウランを核兵器の製造に回すことができる点だ。反対派は「インドの核兵器製造能力が年間7発程度から40~50発に拡大する」と指摘する。国際原子力機関(IAEA)理事会が今年8月に承認したインドとIAEAの保障措置(査察)協定でも、インドの核関連施設22カ所のうち、査察対象は14カ所にとどまる見込みだ。

While the NPT requests nuclear arms reductions from the five nuclear nations (U.S., Russia, Britain, France, China), India only announced that it would "continue a moratorium on nuclear experiments." The U.S. explained that they will "acknowledge India, the world's largest democracy, as part of the mainstream of nuclear nonproliferation." However, this was nothing but a de facto approval of India's position as a non-NPT nuclear power.

 一方、NPTは核兵器国5カ国(米露英仏中)に核軍縮への努力を求めているが、今回、インドは「核実験の凍結(モラトリアム)の継続」を表明しただけ。米国は「世界最大の民主主義国インドを核不拡散の主流に迎え入れる」と説明したが、NPTの枠外のインドの核保有を、事実上追認したといえる。

Japan's handling of the matter was also poor. In the NSG negotiations, Nobutaka Machimura (ex-chief Cabinet secretary) stuck to ambiguity, arguing, "We will make comprehensive judgments." Japan claims that a shift from coal-fired thermal power to nuclear power can reduce greenhouse gases and contribute to global warming countermeasures. However, that does not mean that nuclear nonproliferation can be laid aside.

 日本の対応にも問題があった。日本はNSG交渉で、「総合的に判断する」(町村信孝・前官房長官)とあいまいな態度に終始。確かに日本などの主張通り、石炭火力から原子力発電に転換すれば、温室効果ガスを削減し地球温暖化対策に寄与できる。だが、だからといって核不拡散は後回しでいいわけではない。

There is also the question of India's reliability. The U.S. private think tank the Institute for Science and International Security exposes unexacting Indian business practices, such as revealing centrifuge drawings during the procurement process, and that India "does not appear to appreciate the sensitivity of nuclear information management."

 また、インドの信頼性も疑問視される。米民間シンクタンク「科学・国際安全保障研究所」は、ウラン濃縮用の遠心分離機の設計図を入札業者に公開するなど、厳密さを欠くインド政府の商慣行を明かし、「核情報管理には考えられないずさんさだ」と指摘した。

The very basics of nuclear nonproliferation are now at stake. Who can say no to America, the singular superpower that discriminates against the "rogue nations" of North Korea and Iran in favor of its ally, India? Japan should be the one to take on the leadership role in the nuclear ban. Why can't we say a clear-cut "no" at this crucial time when the NPT framework is falling apart?

 まさに今問われるのは、核不拡散の根幹にかかわる問題だ。同盟国インドと、「ならず者国家」と名指しするイランや北朝鮮で対応に差をつける唯一の大国・米国に誰が物申すのか。核廃絶を国是とする日本こそ、その役割を担うべきではないか。NPT体制が揺らぐ局面に、相手が米国であってもはっきり意見することが必要だ。

The NPT framework that is subject to review every five years stands at a turning point. Allowing an "exception" for India will be the beginning of the storm in the coming 2010 NPT Review Conference in New York.

 5年ごとに見直されるNPT体制は岐路にある。インドへの「例外」措置を認めたことで、2010年にニューヨークで開かれるNPT再検討会議の行方は波乱含みとなった。

At this time, Yukiya Amano, ambassador to the International Organizations in Vienna, is campaigning to succeed Mohamed ElBaradei as the next director general of the "nuclear watchdog" IAEA. Now is the time for Japanese leadership in the nuclear nonproliferation sphere. (By Takuji Nakao, Vienna Bureau)

 折しも「核の番人」であるIAEAでは、次期(来年12月以降)の事務局長候補に、天野之弥・ウィーン国際機関代表部大使が名乗りを上げた。今こそ、核不拡散における日本のリーダーシップと総合力が問われている、と思う。(ウィーン支局)

【ことば】核拡散防止条約(NPT) 

1970年発効。加盟190カ国。米露英仏中5カ国を核兵器国と定め、その他の国に核兵器保有を禁じている点で「不平等条約」と指摘される。また核保有のインド、パキスタン、イスラエルの3カ国が非加盟で、その扱いのあいまいさも批判されている。北朝鮮は03年に脱退を表明した。

毎日新聞 20081023日 007分(最終更新 1023日 008分)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月29日 (水)

市場パニック、どこまで落ちる?

2008/10/29--The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 28(IHT/Asahi: October 29,2008)

EDITORIAL: Mayhem in the markets

市場パニックと総選挙―安定化策を総動員せよ

How long will the yen's rise against other major currencies and the stock market's free fall continue to deepen anxiety about the Japanese economy? Tokyo stocks fell through the post-bubble low on Monday, driving down the benchmark Nikkei 225 index close to the 7,000 level. (The index dipped below 7,000 on Tuesday.)

 日本を襲う円高と株安の連鎖はどこまで続くのか。株式市場は不安心理に覆われてバブル後の最安値を突破し、日経平均が7000円の大台さえ割りかねない水準まで売られた。 

In response to the market mayhem, Prime Minister Taro Aso pledged to "take every possible measure to stabilize the markets and facilitate smooth functioning of the financial system."

 こうしたなか、麻生首相が市場安定化策をまとめるよう指示した。「あらゆる手段を講じ、市場の安定化と金融機能の円滑化を図る」という。 

The package will be designed to achieve two aims. To stop the stock market fall, the measures include a resumption of purchases of shareholdings from banks by the Banks' Shareholdings Purchase Corp., tighter regulations on short selling, which adds to the downward pressure on the stock market, and an extension of tax breaks for securities investments.

 指示には二つの狙いがある。第一が株価暴落の防止である。銀行等保有株式取得機構による銀行保有株の買い取り再開や、株の空売り規制の強化、証券優遇税制の延長などの策だ。 

The Banks' Shareholdings Purchase Corp. was established in 2002 amid the nation's financial crisis. The public entity's mission is to buy depressed shares from banks so that banks don't dump them in the market and thereby accelerate the stock market's decline. The Bank of Japan also bought shares from commercial banks between 2002 and 2004. The government plans to ask the central bank to join the corporation again in the share-purchasing operation.

 株式取得機構は、日本が金融危機に見舞われた02年に発足した。含み損が膨らんだ株を銀行が投げ売りすると、株安に拍車がかかる。銀行保有株の買い取りは日本銀行も02~04年に行っており、今回も同調を要請する。 

The second aim will be to prevent falling stock prices from undermining banks' capital adequacy and making them excessively reluctant to extend new loans, which would further depress the economy. The expected steps include a new version of an expired law on strengthening financial functions, on which the Diet will start deliberations shortly, and relaxing part of the capital adequacy requirements for banks.

 第二の狙いは、株安が銀行経営を圧迫して貸し渋りを招き、経済を冷え込ませるのを防ぐことだ。国会で審議が始まる新・金融機能強化法案や、銀行の自己資本比率規制を弾力的に運用することが含まれる。 

The envisioned new law would allow the government to quickly inject public capital into banks and other lenders, such as shinkin banks and credit cooperatives, whose capital bases have been eroded by sinking stock prices and other reasons. This plan should avert a credit contraction due to banks' capital inadequacy.

The government is reportedly considering expanding the fund for capital injections to 10 trillion yen. It is certainly important to secure more than enough money for this plan.

 新・金融法により、株安などで自己資本が目減りした銀行や信金・信組などに対して素早く公的資本を注入し、自己資本不足による信用収縮を食い止める。注入できる資金枠を10兆円へ拡大するともいわれるが、枠に余裕をもたせておくことは大切だ。 

Another measure would be a temporary freeze on an accounting standard that requires banks and companies to evaluate their holdings of securitized financial products based on actual market prices when they close their books. The mark-to-market accounting rule can prompt businesses to sell battered securities products before their prices fall further, thereby accelerating the market downslide.

 加えて、決算時に証券化商品を時価で評価する会計制度も見直す。商品がさらに下落する前に手放そうとすると暴落を加速する。時価評価でなくなれば決算に悪影響を与えないので、売らずに済む。証券化商品を多くもつ銀行は自己資本が傷つかずに済むので、貸し渋りの防止にもなる。 

A suspension of the rule would help stop businesses from resorting to the sell-offs to limit damage to their balance sheets. The step will also ease pressure on banks to cut off credit lines by allowing them to avoid damage to their capital bases from declining values of their massive holdings of such securitized products.

The United States and Europe are now moving to suspend the market-price accounting rule. Bending an accounting principle is undesirable. To stop the contagion of panic, however, Japan may have no choice but to follow suit.

 時価評価を進めてきた欧米自身が、時価会計の一部凍結に動いている。会計原則を曲げるのは望ましくないが、パニックの連鎖を防ぐためには同調もやむを得ないだろう。 

All potentially useful measures should be legislated swiftly. Enacting a measure after it becomes necessary is too late.

Apparently, there are few disagreements between the ruling and opposition camps over what kind of action should be taken to restore market stability.

The two sides are expected to agree, for example, on such proposals as reviving the financial rehabilitation law, which would enable the government to swiftly put troubled financial institutions under state control, and providing full protection of deposits.

 また、法律で定めるべき制度は、考えられる方策をすべて立法しておいた方がよい。必要になったときに立法するのでは遅い。

あらかじめ制度を整えておき、発動するかどうかは状況に応じ判断するのが賢明だ。直面する市場安定化策の内容については、与野党で意見の違いも少ないだろう。 

 金融機関の一時国有化を機動的に行えるようにする金融再生法の復活や、預金の全額保護がそれに当たる。 

Speedy responses hold the key to restoring stability in the markets. While the effects of each individual measure may be limited, the government should start with things it can do immediately.

 市場対策はスピードが命である。個々の策の効果は限られるが、できることからすぐ実行することだ。 

The issue of how to strengthen the economy over the long term, on the other hand, requires a long and informed discussion.

 一方で、日本経済を力強くしていく中長期的な方策については、じっくり議論する必要があろう。 

As for the currency market, a joint statement by major economic powers is no longer enough to arrest the yen's relentless rise. It is high time for coordinated market intervention by the leading industrial nations.

 為替対策では、異常な円高を抑えるため、主要国の共同声明だけでなく、協調介入へ踏み出すべき段階だ。 

| | コメント (0)

イージス艦情報漏えい

(Oct. 29, 2008)The Yomiuri Shimbun

MSDF leaks must be plugged

イージス艦情報 甘い管理体制が断罪された(1029日付・読売社説)

The judiciary on Tuesday condemned the government organization in charge of national defense for its impermissibly sloppy information management.

 国防を担う組織として余りにもいい加減な情報管理が断罪された。

The Yokohama District Court found Maritime Self-Defense Force Lt. Cmdr. Sumitaka Matsuuchi guilty of leaking highly classified information on an Aegis-equipped destroyer and sentenced him two years and six months in prison, suspended for four years, for violation of the Law Concerning the Protection of Secrets for the Japan-U.S. Mutual Defense Assistance Agreement.

 海上自衛隊のイージス艦情報流出事件で、横浜地裁は、日米相互防衛援助協定等に伴う秘密保護法違反の罪に問われた3佐に懲役2年6月、執行猶予4年の有罪判決を言い渡した。

The court said the leaked information could imperil Japan's national security if it fell into the hands of a third country. The MSDF, which allowed this major crime to happen, needs to overhaul its system for safeguarding secret information.

 判決は、流出した情報について、「第三国に渡った場合、日本の安全を害する恐れすらあった」と認定した。重大事件を引き起こした海自は、秘密情報の管理体制を抜本的に見直す必要がある。

The leak involved highly classified defense secrets provided to Japan by the United States. The information included details on the control system of an Aegis-equipped destroyer that possesses a state-of-the-art air defense capability, such as data on performance of its missiles and the detection ability of its radar.

 流出したのは、米国から供与された「特別防衛秘密」(特防秘)だ。レーダーの探知能力や搭載ミサイルの性能を示すデータなど、最高レベルの防空能力を有するイージス艦の中枢にかかわる情報が含まれていた。

We think it was quite reasonable that the law concerning the protection of secrets was applied for the first time since it came into effect in 1954 to prevent leakage of defense secrets provided by the United States.

 米国から提供された情報の漏えいを防ぐため、1954年に施行された秘密保護法が初めて適用されたのも当然といえよう。

===

Flaws in the system

At the request of another MSDF lieutenant commander, Matsuuchi copied a file containing the secret data to a compact disc on his computer and gave it to him. That file was copied repeatedly among MSDF members. Consequently, the secret information trickled down as far as some rank-and-file members.

 3佐は、別の3佐に頼まれ、秘密データの入ったファイルをパソコンでコピーして渡した。これが発端となり、ファイルのコピーが海自内で繰り返され、末端の隊員にまで流出した。

The court said Matsuuchi lacked awareness of the need to safeguard classified information. Of course, he bears a grave responsibility for the leak. However, we think the more troubling problem is the organizational culture of the MSDF, which allowed its members to copy defense data unchecked.

 判決は、流出元の3佐について「保全意識が欠落していた」と指摘した。無論、3佐の責任は重大だが、コピーの野放し状態を許した組織の体質こそが問題だ。

The Defense Ministry, which is charged with keeping national defense secrets under lock and key, must have the strictest information control system of all government ministries and agencies. While the ministry needs to disclose some information so the public can better understand issues of national defense, the ministry must tightly protect classified information that could jeopardize national interests if it were leaked.

 防衛秘密を扱う防衛省は、各省庁の中でも、情報管理に最も厳格でなくてはならない。防衛に対する理解を深めてもらうために公開すべき情報がある一方で、流出すれば国益を損なう重要情報は、厳重に秘匿する必要がある。

===

Regaining Washington's trust

After this case came to light, the ministry introduced a system to prevent top defense secrets from being copied. This basic countermeasure should have been in place much earlier. The failure to do so speaks volumes of just how slack the ministry's awareness of crisis management was previously.

 事件を受け、防衛省は特防秘をコピーできないようにするシステムを導入した。本来なら、従前から施しておくべき基本的な対策である。いかに危機管理意識が低かったかを物語っている。

Only Self-Defense Force members who really need to know defense secrets should have access to them. It is important that this principle be drilled into SDF members.

 防衛秘密には、知る必要がある最小限の隊員が接する。この原則を徹底する教育が肝要だ。

The leak aroused strong distrust of Japan in U.S. defense circles. The Air Self-Defense Force is currently selecting candidates for its next-generation fighter jet, but Washington appears to be having second thoughts about exporting the F-22 Raptor Stealth Fighter--the jet the ASDF most wants to add to its arsenal--to Japan. This wavering apparently partly stems from concern that cutting-edge technology used in the F-22 might get leaked.

 事件は、米国に強い不信感を与えた。航空自衛隊の次期主力戦闘機の選定作業で、米国は有力候補のF22の対日輸出に慎重な姿勢を見せている。F22の最先端技術の流出を懸念していることが、要因の一つとされる。

An in-house reform panel in the scandal-ridden MSDF has been discussing measures to overhaul the organization. The panel is expected to clarify preventive measures in a report to be released soon. The MSDF should establish a system to protect defense secrets based on the panel's recommendations.

 不祥事続きの海自では、内部に設けた抜本的改革委員会が、組織の立て直し策を検討している。

That will go a long way to restoring the United States' trust in Japan.

 近く出される予定の報告書で、再発防止策を示し、秘密保持の体制を確立することが、米国の信頼回復にもつながる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 29, 2008)

200810290200  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

金融危機どう対処する?

(Mainichi Japan) October 28, 2008

Economic crisis sounds the death knell for market fundamentalism

社説:視点・金融危機 市場を制御できる経済を築こう

The global financial crisis that stemmed from the U.S. has become an economic crisis, and, as funds flow around the world, the assumption that healthy nations are still safe is starting to come into question.

 米国に端を発した世界的金融危機は、経済危機の様相さえ帯びてきた。資金が世界中を流れ回っていることを考えれば、いま元気にみえる国も、安全ではないことは容易に想像できる。

Just 18 months ago, a meeting of the Group of Seven finance ministers and central bankers described the global economic boom as one "that hadn't been experienced in decades."

 たった1年半前には、先進7カ国の財務相や中央銀行総裁が、世界経済の状況を数十年来なかったことと自賛していた。

This optimism was based on the success of economic neoliberalism. They maintained that ballooning budgets and government intervention in economic activities would discourage economic dynamism, and encouraged a "small government" system instead. The idea of neoliberalism holds that avoiding public intervention results in the optimum allocation of resources through market forces, which in turn leads to self-sustaining economic growth.

 こうした楽観論を支えてきたのが新自由主義に立脚した経済学だ。財政の肥大化や、政府による経済活動や市場への介入は経済活力をそぐと主張し、小さな政府政策を推進した。公的介入が撤廃されれば、適正な資源配分が実現し、自律的な経済成長にもつながるというのだ。

In the U.K. and U.S., the Thatcher and Regan administrations pioneered the small government approach, with deregulation and privatization as two of their main pillars. This method gained momentum from the mid-90s.

 英国のサッチャー政権や米国のレーガン政権が先駆けで、規制緩和、民営化などを柱とした「小さい政府論」は90年代以降さらに勢いを増した。

But now, following the American housing bubble collapse, the economic system that humankind has been so proud has revealed its Achilles' heel: an uncontrollable market.

 しかし、米国の住宅バブルが崩壊したいま、制御不可能な市場を人類の成果であるがごとく誇ってきた経済システムの欠陥は明白になった。

The immediate priority is to prevent the financial and economic crisis from turning into a global depression, and an emergency world summit was called to discuss step to achieve this. Nevertheless, any measures adopted will only be a temporary remedy: we need to understand the fundamentals of the new economic paradigm that is emerging and ensure that it can withstand future irrational market runs.

 当面は、金融危機や経済危機が世界的な恐慌に深まらないよう、パッチワーク的な対策を講じていかざるを得ない。緊急世界首脳会議もその一環とみることができる。ただ、そうした対策は急場しのぎに過ぎない。その後に、どのような経済の姿を描くのかが大事である。具体的には市場の暴走を制御できる経済システムへの転換である。

The market mechanism is needed for the smooth functioning of the economy, and speculation is also necessary for broad support of investment. We also have to recognize the utility of hedging against market risk; and moreover, that of transparency, which is vital for the market to work effectively.

 市場が経済活動を円滑に進めていく上で、不可欠の装置であることは間違いない。投資を広く支えていくためには投機も欠かせない。市場での損失を回避するリスクヘッジ機能も認めなければならない。市場が有効に働くためには、透明性が高くなければならない。

The most serious problem of market fundamentalism is that it regards governments and finances as opponents of the market, and holds that optimum results are gained by leaving everything to the market.

 市場原理主義といわれる新自由主義的経済政策の最大の問題点は、政府や財政を市場と対立的にとらえてきたことだ。市場に任せれば、最適の解決策が得られるという錯覚に染まっていたといっていい。政府や規制はその障害という考え方だ。

Nevertheless, governments, as well as markets, make mistakes, and in this age of globalization they can ripple around the world in an instant. And with hedge funds being appraised as the ideal speculation product, the effects of a crisis are prone to spread even more rapidly.

 しかし、政府のみならず市場もしばしば失敗を犯す。しかも、グローバリゼーションの時代には、その失敗が瞬時に世界に広がる。リスクヘッジのための商品が格好の投機商品ともてはやされ、危機の連鎖はより起こりやすくなっている。

This is not a normal economy. In fact, neoliberalist economic policy has already been described as "anachronistic" by this year's Economics Nobel Paul Robin Krugman, professor at Princeton University, and a move towards a new economic system, where governments and financial supervisory agencies can control the market, is essential. (By Eietsu Imamatsu, Editorial Writer)

 これは正常な経済とはいえない。新自由主義的経済政策の無政府性は今年のノーベル経済学賞受賞者であるクルーグマン・プリンストン大教授も指摘している。政府や金融監督当局が市場を制御できる経済システムへの組み替えが必要なのだ。(論説委員 今松英悦)

毎日新聞 20081027日 010

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月28日 (火)

バブル後最安値

(Oct. 28, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

Fast action needed on plummeting stocks

バブル後最安値 与野党協力し対策実現急げ(1028日付・読売社説)

Stocks appear to be in free fall.

 株価の「底」が見えなくなってきた。

The key index of the Tokyo Stock Exchange on Monday dropped 486 points from Friday to close at 7,162, falling past the post-bubble low registered 5-1/2 years ago and hitting its lowest point since October 1982.

 東京市場の平均株価が27日、前週末比486円安の7162円で取引を終え、5年半前につけたバブル崩壊後の最安値をあっけなく更新した。1982年10月以来、26年ぶりの安値だ。

Although the government unveiled a second package of emergency measures the same day to cope with sharp falls on the stock market, it did not help stop the plunge in stock prices.

 この日は、政府が緊急市場対策の第2弾を打ち出したが、株価急落に歯止めはかからなかった。

Market sentiment is thus too gloomy to positively respond to the government measures.

 対策を素直に好感できないところまで、市場の心理は悲観的になっている。

The government, the ruling parties and Bank of Japan must employ all available measures to strengthen financial functions and positively affect the economy. They must do their best to eliminate the anxiety that has been clouding the market.

 政府・与党と日銀は、金融機能の強化や景気にプラスになる政策を総動員し、「総弱気」にとりつかれた市場の不安解消に努めねばならない。

Under the new emergency measures, the amount of state funds that can be injected into regional banks and other financial institutions will be increased from the initially planned 2 trillion yen to 10 trillion yen. The new package also includes a plan to review the method used to calculate the capital adequacy ratio of banks so that the ratios will not be lowered due to increases in latent stock losses.

 緊急市場対策は、地方銀行などへの公的資金注入枠を当初の2兆円から10兆円規模に拡大する方向だ。株式含み損の拡大で自己資本比率が下がらぬよう、比率算出方法を見直す方針も入った。

===

Strengthen systems

These measures to strengthen financial functions will help stabilize financial systems and prevent banks from becoming overly reluctant to lend. The ruling and opposition parties should cooperate in promptly putting the measures into effect by taking necessary steps such as revising the relevant laws.

 こうした金融機能の強化策は、金融システム安定や、貸し渋りの防止に役立とう。与野党が協力し、必要な法改正などを早期に実現してもらいたい。

The purchasing of stocks held by banks by the Banks' Shareholdings Purchase Corporation with the use of government funds also will be resumed. The Bank of Japan, which purchased such stocks in the past just as the government did, also should cooperate.

 銀行等保有株式取得機構を通じた政府資金による銀行保有株の買い取りも再開する。政府と同様に買い取りの実績を持つ日銀も、協力すべきだ。

The government needs to work quickly on fleshing out the fine points of the measures such as whether it is necessary to provide additional funds for the BSPC to purchase such stocks.

 買い取りの資金を追加する必要がないかなど、具体策の詰めを急ぎたい。

If the decline in stock prices is not arrested even after exhausting these measures, another option the government could consider is using public funds to shore up stock prices as an ad hoc measure.

 これらの対策を打ってなお、株価の崩落に歯止めがかからぬようなら、緊急避難的に公的資金による株式買い支えを検討してもいいだろう。

===

Falling stocks, rising yen

A major factor behind the continuing decline in stock prices is the appreciation of the yen. The Group of Seven major nations issued an emergency joint statement, in which they indicated they may jointly intervene against the sharply rising yen. But even after the statement was issued the yen continued rising.

 株安進行の大きな要因に円高がある。先進7か国(G7)は緊急の共同声明を発表し、急速な円高に対して協調介入も辞さない構えを見せた。それでも円高騰の流れは変わらなかった。

The market is closely watching whether the G-7, which showed strong concern over excessive fluctuation in the yen, would actually move for joint intervention to stop the yen from rising or go no further than mere "verbal intervention."

 「円の過度の変動」に強い懸念を示したG7が、円高阻止の協調介入に打って出るか、それとも「口先だけの介入」に終わるか、市場は注目している。

Sharp rises in the yen are not desirable as it may seriously damage export industries. A strong currency, however, is a barometer of economic strength.

 急激な円高は、輸出産業に深刻な打撃を与えかねず、望ましくない。だが、通貨の強さは経済力のバロメーターでもある。

Unlike past drops in stock prices, the nation has not seen the "Japan-selling" associated with depreciation of the yen. This indicates that investors worldwide are positively evaluating the Japanese economy as being stronger than those of the United States and Europe.

 過去の株価下落と違い、円安も進む「日本売り」は起きていない。世界の投資家が、欧米などより日本経済は強いと、評価している証左ではないか。

As the yen rises, the cost of imports such as crude oil falls. If industries make painful structural reforms, the nation's economy could gain even more strength.

 円高で、原油などの輸入コストも下がる。痛みに耐えて産業の構造改革を進めれば、一段と強い日本経済を構築できよう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 28, 2008)

200810280126  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

全治3年の発想

(Mainichi Japan) October 27, 2008

Aso invokes Takeo Fukuda's 'three-year complete cure' plan for economy

近聞遠見:福田赳をまねた「全治3年」=岩見隆夫

The grievous cries of businessmen are being heard more often. Last week, at a study meeting in Yokohama held under the auspices of the Tokyo Regional Taxation Bureau, the proprietors of companies in the high-frequency-wave product business made their voices heard.

 企業人の悲痛な叫びを聞くことが多くなった。今週、横浜で開かれた東京国税局管内法人会役員研修会での雑談で、高周波関連企業の経営者が訴えるのである。

"For (Prime Minister Taro) Aso to put on an optimistic face gives us encouragement. However, at this rate, from the end of the year to the beginning of next, we small and medium-sized companies will begin to drop like flies," warned the proprietors.

 「麻生(太郎・首相)さんが明るく振る舞うのは励みになる。しかし、いまのままでは、この年末から来年にかけ、私たち中小企業はばたばた倒れますよ。

"Aso has been talking up a complete cure after several years, and large corporations should be able to hold out. However, in the event that they are completely cured, if the small and medium-sized companies disappear, large corporations would screech to a halt. Large corporations can't get by without their small and medium subcontractors. That point should not be forgotten."

 全治何年とか麻生さんは言ってるが、大企業は持ちこたえるでしょう。だけどかりに全治しても、中小企業が消えていたら大企業は立ち往生です。下請けの中小がなくては大企業は成り立たない。そのことを忘れてはいかん」

Since taking office, Prime Minister Aso has repeatedly talked about a three-year complete cure for the economy. In his first policy speech, he said, "It will take about three years for the outlook to clear up. I will say that a complete cure for the Japanese economy will take three years. Japan will re-emerge in three years. I believe that this is something we have to do," said Aso, as he rattled off a succession of "threes." Is there a special hope of success attached to three years?

 麻生首相は就任以来、経済の、 <全治3年> を繰り返してきた。初の所信表明演説では、「めどをつけるには、大体3年。日本経済は全治3年、と申し上げます。3年で、日本は脱皮できる。せねばならぬと信じるものであります」 と述べ、<3>の数字を連発した。3年という期間に特別の成算があるのか。

The significance of the "three-year complete cure" plan that Aso espouses is revealed in the article that he wrote as prime minister for the November issue of Bungei Shunju magazine.

 <全治3年>の真意を、麻生は首相の肩書で執筆した論文(「文芸春秋」11月号)に記している。

In November 1973, in the midst of the tumultuous price rises following the first oil shock, then Finance Minister Takeo Fukuda, who was a member of the Tanaka Cabinet, coined the "three-year complete cure" catchphrase.

 1973年11月、第1次石油ショック後の狂乱物価のさなか、福田赳夫蔵相が掲げた標語が<全治3年>だった。田中政権下である。

After Finance Minister Kiichi Aichi died suddenly, Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka asked his political rival Fukuda to succeed Aichi. Before accepting the post, Fukuda asked Tanaka, "What do you think messed up the management of the economy?"

 愛知揆一蔵相が心労で急死し、田中角栄首相は政敵の福田に、「あとを引き受けてほしい」と頼む。福田は受ける前に、「経済の運営がめちゃくちゃになった根源は何だと思うか」と田中に問うた。

Tanaka replied, "It is because of the oil shock ..."

 「石油ショックでこうなって……」

"That's not the case," retorted Fukuda. "Prices have been going up and up because of your plan to remodel the Japanese archipelago, and the international balance of payments has gone haywire. The oil shock was the final blow. Things can't be fixed unless you change your thinking on the ultra-high-speed growth that would accompany the remodeling of the archipelago"

Fukuda had essentially asked Tanaka to take down his "remodel the archipelago" banner. Tanaka was reluctant, but the following morning he told Fukuda, "I will withdraw my plan. You won't hear a peep from me on the economy. I'll leave it up to you," and Fukuda became finance minister.

 「そうじゃない。あんたが掲げた日本列島改造論で物価は暴騰に次ぐ暴騰、国際収支が大混乱に陥っている。石油ショックは追い打ちだ。列島改造の超高度成長的な考え方を改めない限り、修復はできない」 と列島改造の旗を降ろすよう求めた。田中は渋り、翌朝、「撤回する。経済についてはひと言も言わない。任せる」と答えて、福田蔵相が生まれる、という経緯があった。

Fukuda told the nation, "This time it won't be easy. A complete cure takes three years. All of you will have to show considerable perseverance."

At the time, Aso was the 33-year-old manager of a cement company. "We were being squeezed by soaring raw materials costs and personnel costs but plunged ahead with new plant investment. Everybody had an opposing view, so Finance Minister Fukuda's bold 'three-year complete cure' catchphrase gave us the green light to go forward," Aso writes in the article that explains why he is rolling out Fukuda's catchphrase again.

 このとき、福田は、「今回は簡単ではない。全治3年。みなさんにこの際、相当我慢してもらわなくてはならない」と繰り返し国民に訴えた。当時、麻生はセメント会社の若き経営者、33歳だ。<原材料費や人件費の沸騰に苦しみつつも、新規の設備投資に踏み切ったときだ。周囲は反対意見ばかりだったから、福田蔵相の力強い「全治3年」の標語はまさに力水のように聞こえた>と福田標語を再使用した心境を先の論文に書いている。

But the "three-year complete cure" that Fukuda attempted 35 years ago was a contractionary demand management policy based on fiscal restraint, so corporations could not look forward to rapid growth, and households had to scrimp on consumption.

 だが、同じ<全治3年>でも、35年前に福田が採用したのは総需要管理政策で、財政を抑え、企業は高い成長を期待せず、家庭も消費を控えめに、という緊縮的なものだった。

Fukuda later said, "The nation was very cooperative, three years passed, and by the fourth year, the Japanese economy had recovered and was running normally." Fukuda himself became prime minister three years after his "three-year complete cure" declaration.

 「国民もよく協力してくれて、3年が経過し、4年目ぐらいから日本経済は大体正常運転ができるまで回復した」とあとで福田は語っている。福田自身も<全治3年>宣言からちょうど3年目、首相に就任した。

So what measures will Aso, who advocates an expansionary policy, adopt? Will his "three-year complete cure" plan bear fruit? In his article, Aso is critical of all administrations since the bubble burst in 1993 (with the exception of the Koizumi administration), and boasts, "I will not repeat their failures. I have the experience in the art of persuasion and the knowledge to reach realistic and optimum conclusions."

 さて、積極派の麻生はどんな手を打つのか。<3年>の借用が生きてくるのか。麻生は先の論文で、バブル崩壊の93年以降の歴代政権に批判(小泉政権だけは評価)を加えながら、<その愚を私は繰り返さない。私には現実的に最適な結論を得るための説得の経験と知恵がある> と自負した。

For the time being, let's sit back and watch him strut his stuff.

(By Takao Iwami, Adviser to the Mainichi Shimbun Editorial Division)

しばらくは、お手並み拝見といこう。

毎日新聞 20081025日 東京朝刊

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月27日 (月)

日中条約30年

2008/10/27--The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 25(IHT/Asahi: October 27,2008)

EDITORIAL: 30 years of Japan-China relations

日中条約30年―世界のために働く関係へ

On October 23, 1978, the Japan-China Peace and Friendship Treaty came into effect. In those days, Japan was the country on the rise. In China, the chaos of the Cultural Revolution was only two years in the past. There was a wide economic gap between the two nations. It has been 30 years since then. The economic relationship between the two countries has changed dramatically.

 1978年10月23日、日中平和友好条約が発効した。当時、日本は日の出の勢いだった。中国は文化大革命の混乱が終わって2年で、両国の経済力には大きな差があった。それから30年。この関係は劇的に変わった。 

Nowadays, China is a great power both politically and economically.

 いまや中国は政治においても経済においても大国だ。

As two of the world's major powers, how should the two countries design the next 30 years?

世界の二つのパワーとして、日本と中国は次の30年をどう描けばよいのだろうか。 

Soon after the peace treaty was signed, the Chinese Communist Party decided to embark upon reform and an open-door policy. The following year, Japan began its official development aid (ODA) program for China, and supported China's development with funds and technology.

On the Japanese side, there was the feeling that Japan was helping China in lieu of paying compensation for World War II. And now, the global community looks toward the two countries to support the world besieged by the global financial crisis.

 条約締結から間もなく、中国共産党は改革開放に踏み出すことを決めた。日本は翌年、中国に対する政府の途上国援助(ODA)を始め、資金や技術などで中国の発展を支えた。日本側には、日中戦争の賠償に代わるものとしての意識もあった。そしていま、両国には金融危機に見舞われた世界を支える役割を期待される。 

This change is the result of the past 30 years. But on the other hand, there is still deep-rooted mistrust between the peoples of the two countries.

 30年間の成果といえる。だが一方で、国民の間の不信感は根強い。 

The first decade of the past 30 years went by smoothly. According to public opinion polls conducted by the government, roughly 70 percent of the Japanese public had favorable opinions toward China. But this number plummeted in 1989, the year of the Tiananmen Square Incident. The Japanese public bitterly realized the difficulties of dealing with a country with a different political system.

 30年の最初の10年は順風だった。政府の世論調査によると、中国に親しみを感じる人が7割前後あった。しかし、天安門事件が起きた89年に急落した。政治体制の違いを超えてつきあうことの難しさを日本人は痛感した。 

In 2004, when there was much talk over China's "anti-Japan" crowds at soccer games, and also in 2005 when there were the anti-Japan demonstrations, the Japanese public's favorability numbers toward China dropped to the 30-percent range. This was in tandem with a worsening anti-Japanese sentiment among the Chinese public. In a joint public opinion survey conducted by The Asahi Shimbun and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, 64 percent of Chinese surveyed said they disliked Japan.

 サッカーの「反日応援」が問題になった04年、反日デモが起きた05年には3割台に落ち込んだ。中国側の対日感情の悪化と連動していた。本社と中国社会科学院との世論調査で、中国側の64%が日本を「嫌い」と答えた。 

On the Chinese side, there is much resentment over Japan's indifference to its past history, as evidenced by events like former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visits to Yasukuni Shrine.

 中国側には、小泉元首相の靖国神社参拝をはじめ、歴史問題に対する日本人の無理解への反発が根強い。

On the Japanese side, there seems to be several factors, such as the loss of confidence since the bubble economy burst, that make Japanese more likely to see China as a threat.

日本側にはバブル崩壊後の自信の喪失もあって中国を脅威と感じやすくなったことなど様々な要因があるようだ。 

The two countries' paths highlight the difficulties of their bilateral relationship. Nevertheless, they mutually agreed to start taking measures that aid both nations, coming up with the notion of a "mutually beneficial strategic relationship" two years ago.

 こうした歩みに日中関係の難しさが浮かぶ。それでも、互いに利益になることからやっていこう。そんな「戦略的互恵関係」という発想にたどりついたのは2年前のことだ。 

When Chinese President Hu Jintao visited Japan in May this year, the two countries agreed to cooperate in their contributions to Asia and the world. Prime Minister Taro Aso also announced his intentions on Friday at the 30th anniversary ceremony to "work together and grow together for a more vigorous, more open Asia."

 胡錦濤国家主席がことし5月に訪日した際、両国は協力してアジアや世界に貢献しようと合意した。麻生首相もきのうの30周年記念式典で「より活力ある、開かれたアジアのために、共に働き、共に伸びる」と述べた。 

There are many issues Japan and China can cooperate and work together on: coping with the regional financial crisis; nuclear disarmament of North Korea; global warming; creating a regional immediate response system for natural disasters or infectious diseases.

 地域の経済危機への対応、北朝鮮の核廃棄、地球温暖化対策、大規模な自然災害や感染症に即時対応する地域システムづくり――日中が共同で取り組むことのできる問題は多い。 

We urge China to work toward making their policy-making process and their military and security policies more transparent. We also would like to see a much more cooperative China in participating in the international community's collective actions.

 そのために、中国には政策決定や軍事、安保政策の不透明性を解消する努力をしてほしい。国際社会の共同作業への一層の協力姿勢も求めたい。 

In this region, the Japan-U.S. alliance plays an important role, but these days, U.S.-China relations are also growing closer.

 この地域では日米同盟が重要な役割を果たすが、このところ米中関係も密接だ。

Maintaining stable trilateral relations among Japan, the United States and China will become increasingly important.

日米中3カ国の安定した関係維持がいっそう大切になるだろう。 

If Japan and China can succeed in collaborating and contributing to the world, then that will help foster trust between the two countries, which in turn will help us open up our hearts to each other. We hope the next 30 years will be like that.

 日中が世界に貢献を重ねるにつれ、相互の信頼感が増し、心も開かれてくる。次の30年はそうありたい。

| | コメント (0)

税制改革工程表

(Oct. 27, 2008)The Yomiuri Shimbun

Consumption tax hike only solution to situation

税制改革工程表 「中期財源」は消費税しかない(1027日付・読売社説)

Prime Minister Taro Aso has instructed the ruling coalition parties to formulate a basic policy for overhauling the tax system over the medium term, with an eye to raising the consumption tax rate in the future.

 麻生首相が、消費税率の引き上げを念頭に置き税制改革の「中期プログラム」を作るよう与党に指示した。

An enormous amount of money is needed to cover the ever-growing social security expenses due to the graying society and declining birthrate. It is certain that only the consumption tax can provide such funding.

 少子高齢化で膨らむ一方の社会保障費を賄うには、巨額な費用が必要だ。その財源を確保するには、消費税しかないことは、はっきりしている。

Mindful of the anticipated House of Representatives election, both the ruling bloc and the opposition parties have spelled out various policies. However, both sides have avoided a full-scale discussion over how to fund social security.

 与野党とも衆院選に向け、様々な政策を打ち出しているが、いずれも財源論を避けてきた。

Given the prevailing circumstances, showing a willingness to tackle head-on the issue of raising the consumption tax is a significant decision.

そうした中、消費税に真正面から取り組む姿勢を示したことは、大きな意義を持つ決断である。

In the current severe economic environment, it is not reasonable to raise the consumption tax rate immediately, but the nation must be prepared for it eventuality.

 現在の厳しい経済環境下で、直ちに消費税を引き上げるのは無理があるが、それに向けた準備は整えておかねばならない。

Before a tax system revision at the year's end, the government and the ruling parties should draw up and present to the public a specific plan to raise the consumption tax rate.

 政府・与党は年末の税制改正までに、消費税引き上げまでの明確な工程表を作りあげ、国民に示すべきである。

===

Make plan clear

Aso told the ruling parties to formulate the basic policy by adding to the outline of the upcoming economic stimulus package that the ruling coalition parties presented to the prime minister on Thursday.

 首相の指示は、与党が報告した景気対策の骨格に追加する形で出された。

The outline included a flat-sum tax reduction of 2 trillion yen and a large cut in expressway tolls. Aso also has insisted the package includes the largest-ever tax break for home buyers.

 骨格には、2兆円規模の定額減税や、高速道路料金の引き下げなどが盛り込まれていた。首相はこれに、住宅ローン減税の大幅拡充などを加えるよう求めた。

The planned tax break for home buyers will involve the largest income tax deduction ever, which may reduce tax revenues by more than 2 trillion yen a year.

 住宅ローン減税は、所得税などの控除額を過去最大級にする考えで、減税規模は、年間2兆円を超す可能性もある。

Initially, lawmakers were considering tapping into the reserves of the country's special account budgets to fund the new economic stimulus package. Because of the prime minister's instruction, that source of funding is no longer sufficient.

 景気対策の財源としては当初、国の特別会計の積立金などを取り崩して充てる目算だった。だが、首相の指示で、それだけでは追いつかなくなった。

Moreover, the decline in corporate tax revenue due to the abrupt slowdown of the economy, is expected to be between 2 trillion yen and 3 trillion yen this fiscal year.

 さらに、景気の急減速による法人税収の落ち込みは、今年度予算で2~3兆円になるとされる。

===

Bonds not permanent solution

It is highly likely that the shortfall must be covered by issuing additional government bonds. But without a steady revenue stream, it is obvious that the government's finances will cease to function at some stage.

 こうした財源不足は当面、国債を増発して凌(しの)がねばならない可能性が高い。しかし、確かな財源がなければ、いずれ財政が回らなくなるのは目に見えていよう。

More serious is the issue of social security expenses. Raising government funding of the basic pension to 50 percent will require 2.3 trillion yen, but a source of funds for this has not yet been finalized.

 より深刻なのは、社会保障費である。基礎年金の国庫負担割合を2分の1に引き上げるには、2・3兆円が必要だが、その手当てはついていない。

According to projections by the National Council on Social Security, more than 10 trillion yen in public funding will be needed annually for improving health and nursing care services by fiscal 2025. In addition, several trillion yen will be necessary for pension system reform.

 社会保障国民会議などの試算では、2025年にかけ、医療・介護の充実に年間10兆円以上の公費がかかる。年金の改革にも数兆円単位の費用が必要だ。

If this issue is left untouched, the future of the nation's social security system is impossible to predict. Securing a permanent source of funding by raising the consumption tax will relieve public anxiety.

 これを放置していては、社会保障制度の将来が見えない。消費税を引き上げて恒久的な財源を確保してこそ、国民を安心させることができるというものだ。

The Democratic Party of Japan has promised to create a system to guarantee minimum pension payments, but has not specified how it will fund such a system. The DPJ should engage in policy debates with the ruling coalition by presenting specific source of funding.

 民主党は、最低保障年金制度の創設などを掲げるが、財源はあいまいだ。明確な財源を示し、与党と政策論争すべきである。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 27, 2008)

200810270225  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

日中韓連携

(Mainichi Japan) October 26, 2008

Japan, China and ROK should strengthen cooperation in response to financial crisis

社説:麻生外交 日中韓の連携を強める時だ

When Prime Minister Taro Aso visited China for the first time since he took office, he met separately with Chinese President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao, and with South Korean President Lee Myung-bak. In the respective meetings, Aso agreed with them to develop Japan-China and Japan-South Korea relations, and strengthen their cooperation to respond to a range of problems, including the financial crisis that is spreading across the world.

 麻生太郎首相は首相就任後初の訪中で、中国の胡錦濤国家主席と温家宝首相、韓国の李明博(イミョンバク)大統領と個別に会談し、日中、日韓関係を発展させるとともに、世界的な金融危機などに対応するため連携を強めていくことを確認した。

A framework for cooperation in northeastern Asia that is broader than bilateral relations is necessary to tackle regional issues such as the North Korean security problem and global warming, in addition to the financial crisis and the increasingly serious world economic condition. It is hoped that the leaders of Japan, China and South Korea will make efforts to leverage cooperation among their countries for the good of the international community.

 深刻化する金融・世界経済情勢への対応に加え、北朝鮮問題を含めた安全保障や地球温暖化対策など、北東アジアでも2国間の枠組みを超えた協力が必要な時である。日中韓の首脳は3カ国の協調を国際社会の中で生かす態勢づくりに努めてほしい。

President Hu visited Japan in May and July this year, and then Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda reciprocated by visiting China in August. Aso's visit was the fourth Japan-China summit meeting this year. Such frequent summit talks are unprecedented.

 今年、日中間では胡主席が5月と7月に訪日し、8月には福田康夫首相(当時)が訪中した。今回が今年4回目の首脳会談となった。これほどひんぱんな首脳交流は過去にも例がない。

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the signing of the Japan-China Peace and Amity Treaty. During a reception to celebrate the anniversary, Prime Minister Aso said in his speech that there are few countries more important to Japan than China, and that the two countries are indispensable partners for each other.

 今年は日中平和友好条約締結から30年の節目に当たる。麻生首相が条約締結30周年記念レセプションのあいさつで、「中国くらい日本にとって重要な国はざらにはない」「互いに欠くべからざるパートナーだ」と述べたのも当然といえる。

Complementary relations between the two countries have deepened rapidly. The amount of bilateral trade last year increased to more than 200 times the volume when the two countries normalized their diplomatic relations, and surpassed that between Japan and the United States for the first time. China is Japan's largest trading partner now. The number of people traveling between the two countries exceeded 5 million last year.

 この間、相互補完関係が急速に深まった。昨年の貿易総額は国交正常化時の200倍を超えて初めて日米間を上回り、中国が日本にとって最大の貿易相手国となった。人の往来も昨年は500万人を超えた。

Needless to say, there are pressing issues between the two countries. President Hu promised to properly respond to food poisoning caused by Chinese-made gyoza dumplings. Aso and Wen have confirmed that they will hold working-level consultations on the development of gas fields in the East China Sea toward the implementation of joint development and other solutions. China is urged to sincerely respond to these issues.

 もちろん、解決が迫られている課題もある。中国製冷凍ギョーザによる中毒事件について胡主席は「きちんと対応する」と約束し、東シナ海のガス田開発問題は共同開発の実施などへ向け事務レベルで協議を進めていくことを温首相との間で確認した。中国側の真剣な対応を求めたい。

Prime Minister Aso said in the reception, "Japan and China must spread the spirit of common benefit throughout the world, and "We are looking ahead to the common future."

 麻生首相はレセプションあいさつで「日中両国は『共益』の精神を世界に広げていかなければならない」「私たちは同じ未来を見据えている」とも述べた。

We agree to the idea of dealing with issues over which they are divided in a spirit of common benefit. It will lead to the development of the strategically reciprocal relationship between the two countries.

意見が異なる問題にも「共益」の精神で臨もうという呼びかけには同感である。「戦略的互恵関係」を発展させることにもつながる。

During the Japan-South Korea summit talks, the two leaders agreed to continue their cooperation in handling the issue of North Korea's nuclear program and continuation of top-level exchanges. The two leaders did not mention the disputed Takeshima Islands (which South Korea calls Dokdo) after Japan's new school curriculum guidance's description of the islands strained the bilateral ties. We appreciate the two leaders' stance of putting priority to cooperation toward a new era of Japan-South Korea relations.

 一方、日韓首脳会談では北朝鮮の核問題での連携や首脳交流の継続を確認したが、新学習指導要領解説書への記述で一時両国関係をぎくしゃくさせる要因となった竹島(韓国名・独島)問題には双方とも触れなかった。「日韓新時代」への協力関係を優先させた両首脳の対応を評価したい。

Premier Wen and President Lee expressed their support for Aso's proposal that summit talks between the three countries should be held in Japan by the end of this year. Initially, the trilateral summit talks were scheduled to be held in Kobe in September, but were indefinitely postponed following the sudden resignation of then Prime Minister Fukuda.

 温首相と李大統領は、麻生首相が提案した日中韓3首脳会談の年内日本開催を支持した。当初は9月に神戸市で開く予定だったのが福田首相の突然の退陣で延期されたいきさつがある。

It remains to be seen whether the trilateral summit will be held within this year because it remains unclear exactly when Aso will dissolve the House of Representatives for a snap general election later this year. However, it is of great significance that the leaders of Japan, China and South Korea meet regularly -- separately from international conferences -- to exchange frank opinions over issues in Asia as well as international affairs.

 年内開催は衆院解散・総選挙の時期ともからみデリケートな問題ではある。しかし、国際会議とは独立した形で日中韓3カ国の首脳が定期的に集まり、アジアや国際的な課題について率直に意見交換する場を新設する意義が大きいのは確かである。

毎日新聞 20081025日 044

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月26日 (日)

公務欠席の雅子さま

(Mainichi Japan) October 25, 2008

The Imperial Household Agency has an obligation to explain Crown Princess Masako's actions

記者の目:公務欠席し、運動会へ行った雅子さま=真鍋光之(東京社会部)

 ◇「病気だから」で済ますな--批判招く宮内庁の説明不足

Crown Princess Masako was absent from the 8th National Sports Festival for the Disabled held in Oita Prefecture. Instead, she went to a sports day event held at Gakushuin Primary School, Tokyo, the school her daughter, Princess Aiko, attends. Grand Master Issei Nomura of the Imperial Household Agency, who is responsible for the care of the Crown Prince and Princess, explained that "illness" was the determining factor underlying the Crown Princess' respective absence and attendance at these two events. However, for an Imperial Family that has prioritized official duties over private lives, some are criticizing the Crown Princess this time for "neglecting official duties."

 皇太子妃雅子さまは、大分県での第8回全国障害者スポーツ大会を欠席し、長女愛子さまの学習院初等科(東京都新宿区)の運動会を観戦した。皇太子ご夫妻のお世話をするトップ、宮内庁の野村一成・東宮大夫は二つの行事への出欠の背景に「病気」があると述べたが、プライベートより公務を重視してきた皇室にあって、雅子さまに対し「公務軽視」との批判が一部から出ている。

Given her current condition, I think it would have been difficult for Crown Princess Masako to perform official duties at a distant location. However, I do not think it is acceptable to use her illness as a way to deal with the issue of balancing her public and private life as a member of the Imperial Family. The Imperial Household Agency should provide a detailed explanation of Crown Princess Masako's recent actions.

 今の雅子さまにとって遠出の公務は難しかったとは思うが、皇族の公私の問題を、病気を理由に簡単に済ませていいとは思わない。今回の雅子さまの行動について、宮内庁は詳細な説明をすべきだ。

The Gakushuin Primary School sports day was held on Oct. 12. Images of Princess Aiko in a footrace emerged following the event. It was a heartwarming scene of mother and child, with Crown Princess Masako filming from the sidelines and waving to her daughter. The Crown Prince, however, was in Oita Prefecture attending the National Sports Festival for the Disabled, where he watched athletes with mental disabilities play volleyball and other sports. Under normal circumstances Crown Princess Masako should have attended to this official duty with the Crown Prince.

 12日の学習院初等科の運動会。報道陣には愛子さまがかけっこをする場面が公開された。愛子さまに手を振り、カメラで撮影する雅子さま。母子のほほえましい光景だったが、皇太子さまはこの日、全国障害者スポーツ大会で大分県を訪問しており、精神障害者のバレーボール競技などを視察していた。本来なら雅子さまも同行する公務だった。

In a press conference on Oct. 3, Grand Master Nomura explained that the reason Crown Princess Masako refrained from official duties to attend the school sports day was due to the fact that she "is currently undergoing medical treatment." The decision was "the result of a comprehensive consideration of the situation in its entirety. Doctors were also consulted." Furthermore, he called for understanding, stating, "in principle, (the Crown Princess) is active to the extent she is able."

 野村東宮大夫は3日の会見で、雅子さまが公務を休んで運動会を観戦することに対し「病気療養中」で「全体的な中身、総合的にいろいろ考えた結果。医師とも相談した」などと説明した。さらに「基本的には可能な中でのご活動ということ」と理解を求めた。

I find it impossible to accept the Imperial Household Agency's attempt to use "illness" as the justification for blithely dismissing issues involving the official duties of the Imperial Family.

 だが私は、皇族の公私が絡むことを「病気だから」という理由であっさり終わらせようとする宮内庁の姿勢に納得できないでいる。

The Imperial Family has a saying that "there is no privacy for the Emperor or Imperial Family," indicating that the family prioritizes "public life" over "private life." The Emperor, Empress, and other members of the Imperial Family have shown that they place official duties first.

 皇室には、「私」より「公」を重視することを表した「天皇、皇族に私(わたくし)なし」という言葉があり、天皇、皇后両陛下はじめ皇族方は、公務を優先する姿勢を示している。

At a press conference in 2000 for the Emperor's birthday, the Emperor stated, regarding the relationship between public and private, that, "both the Empress and I have so far carried out our official duties taking them as a matter of course." The following year, the Emperor commented on the priority given to official duties, stating "We (the Imperial Family) cannot completely remove ourselves from our public position even during the time we spend privately" and, "(in the balance between public and private) overwhelming weight rests with the former."

 公務とプライベートの兼ね合いについて天皇陛下は00年の誕生日会見で、「公務については、私も皇后も務めであればするのが当然だと思って過ごしてきました」と語った。翌年には「私どもは、やはり私人として過ごす時にも、自分たちの立場を完全に離れることはできません」「(公私の比重は)前者の方に多く掛かっております」と公務優先の考えを述べた。

The Crown Prince made similar statements in a press conference held on the occasion of his birthday in 2004. "I think that the most important thing for the Imperial Family is to perform their duties first and foremost for the happiness of the people, above and beyond personal hopes." Prior to the start of her medical treatment, Crown Princess Masako regularly performed official duties with the Crown Prince.

皇太子さまも04年の誕生日会見で「国民の幸福を一番誰よりも先に、自分たちのことよりも先に願って、国民の幸福を祈りながら仕事をするという、これが皇族の一番大切なことではないか」と話した。雅子さまは、療養前は皇太子さまと一緒に公務をすることが普通だった。

In response to the question: "Isn't this prioritizing private affairs over official duties?" asked at the recent press conference, Grand Master Nomura only replied with "that is one way of looking at the situation." What is his opinion on the actions of Crown Princess Masako, whose conduct could be construed as fundamentally overturning the position to prioritize the official duties maintained by the Emperor, Empress, and the Imperial Family? Shouldn't more care be taken with one's words given the criticism that the Crown Princess is "neglecting official duties?"

 野村東宮大夫は会見で「公務よりプライベート優先では」との問いかけに、「そういう見方もあるだろうが」と述べただけだった。天皇、皇后両陛下や皇族方が積み上げてきた公務を重視するというあり方を、根本から覆すともとらえられかねない雅子さまの行動に対して、どう考えているのか。「公務軽視」の批判がある中、丁寧に言葉を尽くすべきだろう。

Furthermore, "illness" as a reason was not convincing. The Crown Princess has not performed any official duties necessitating an overnight stay since her attendance in January of this year of the opening ceremony of the National Winter Sports Festival in Nagano Prefecture. In addition, while in Tokyo she seldom leaves her residence. It is possible to assume from these facts that it would be nearly impossible for her to perform official duties over two nights and three days in Oita Prefecture. Regardless, the press conference with Grand Master Nomura provided no detailed information about Crown Princess Masako's current condition.

 「病気」という理由についても説得力に欠けた。雅子さまは今年1月、冬季国体開会式で長野県を訪れて以来、泊まりがけの公務をしておらず、都内での外出も少ない。このことからも2泊3日の大分での公務は無理だったのだろうと想像するが、野村東宮大夫の会見では、雅子さまが今、具体的にどのような状態なのかまったくわからない。

To what extent did the Imperial Household Agency debate Crown Princess Masako's absence from the National Sports Festival for the Disabled and attendance of Princess Aiko's sports day from the perspective of "public" versus "private?" Did the people involved in the National Sports Festival for the Disabled receive information on the Crown Princess' condition that made it impossible for her to attend? Did they receive a comprehensive explanation regarding the significance of the Crown Princess' presence at the school sports day?

 そもそも宮内庁は、雅子さまが全国障害者スポーツ大会を欠席し、愛子さまの運動会に出席することについて、「公」と「私」という観点でどこまで議論したのだろうか。そして全国障害者スポーツ大会関係者に、雅子さまが欠席せざるを得ない現状、逆に運動会を観戦する理由を意を尽くして説明したのだろうか。

Grand Master Nomura's comments leave some unanswered questions. The phrase "the result of a comprehensive consideration" is too vague and is an insult to the National Sports Festival for the Disabled organizers, athletes, and volunteers who collectively worked very hard to prepare for the anticipated attendance of Crown Princess Masako.

 野村東宮大夫の言葉を聞く限り疑問が残る。「総合的に考えた結果」などといういい方はあまりに大ざっぱで、雅子さまが出席することも想定しながら準備に汗を流してきた大会関係者、障害者、ボランティアらに失礼であろう。

It has been almost five full years since the Crown Princess started undergoing medical treatment. It seems that criticisms and doubts regarding Crown Princess Masako grow stronger each year. This most recent incident has reinforced my view that it is the Imperial Household Agency and its failure to provide detailed information that is responsible for creating these conditions.

 雅子さまが療養に入って丸5年がたとうとしている。雅子さまへの批判、疑問は年々、強まっているように感じるが、今回の件を見て改めて思うのは、その原因を作っているのは詳しい説明をしない宮内庁であるということだ。

The actions of the ill Crown Princess Masako are sometimes difficult to understand and are easily misunderstood. Although the Imperial Household Agency is supposed to provide supporting information, it often stops short at "it is an illness" or "her condition varies." This only serves to isolate the Crown Princess. In consideration of the future of Crown Princess Masako and the Imperial Family, the Imperial Household Agency has an obligation to provide better explanations. (By Hiroyuki Manabe, Mainichi Shimbun)

 病気で苦しむ雅子さまの行動は時にわかりにくく、誤解を生みやすい。それを補足するのが宮内庁なのに、「ご病気」「体調に波がある」で終わらせることが多い。それは雅子さまを孤立させることにほかならない。雅子さまと皇室の将来を考えるならば、宮内庁はもっと説明に心を砕く責任がある。


毎日新聞 20081021日 東京朝刊

| | コメント (0)

アジア欧州会議

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Oct. 26, 2008)

Boost global cooperation to weather financial crisis

アジア欧州会議 危機乗り切りへ連携強化を(1026日付・読売社説)

The U.S.-sparked financial crisis has been expanding worldwide, and stock prices and exchange rates continue to fluctuate violently. It is of great significance that Asia and Europe have pledged to strengthen their cooperation to avoid a further chain reaction as a result of the crisis.

 米国発の金融危機が拡大し、株式・為替市場の乱高下が続いている。危機の連鎖を防ぐため、アジアと欧州が連携を強化する意義は大きい。

The Asia-Europe Meeting, attended by leaders of 45 Asian and European countries and international organizations, including Japan, China and South Korea, ended a two-day summit meeting in Beijing on Saturday, adopting a chairman's statement and a special financial statement.

 日中韓などアジアと、欧州各国を合わせた45か国・機関の首脳が出席し、北京で開かれたアジア欧州会議(ASEM)が、議長声明と金融特別声明を採択して閉幕した。

The economic scale of the ASEM meeting's participant countries spans about half the world. At a time when the crisis has been deepening, it is the first such large-scale summit meeting to take place.

 ASEM全体の経済規模は世界の半分を占める。危機が深刻化する中で、これほど大規模な首脳会議は初めてだ。

The ASEM special financial statement stressed that the International Monetary Fund should play a more important role in supporting countries in distress due to the crisis. It also indicated strong determination to overcome the crisis by coming up with ways to reform the regulation and governance of financial institutions.

 金融特別声明は、窮地にある国に対する支援で国際通貨基金(IMF)がより重要な役割を果たすべきだと強調している。金融機関への規制・監督の強化も打ち出すなど、金融危機を克服する強い決意を示した。

The ASEM statements have been criticized as lacking substance. But it can be said that the ASEM meeting produced good results, considering the fact that the gathered leaders of countries and international organizations shared a sense of crisis and issued a strong message to the world.

 具体的な内容に乏しいとの批判もあるが、首脳が危機感を共有し、力強いメッセージを発信したのは成果と言っていいだろう。

===

Small, midsize nations at risk

The problem we should keep an especially close eye on is that the financial crisis has been spreading to emerging and small and midsize countries in Asia and Europe, some of which have experienced monetary instability.

 いま特に警戒すべき問題は、欧州やアジアの新興国や中小国などに危機が波及し、一部の国で通貨不安が起きていることだ。

In Europe, Hungary, Iceland and Ukraine are caught in a critical economic situation, and they have asked the IMF to grant urgent loans after their currencies collapsed.

 欧州では、ハンガリー、アイスランド、ウクライナが経済危機に陥り、それぞれの通貨が暴落して、IMFの緊急融資を要請した。


In Asia, Pakistan--which is suffering an outflow of foreign currencies--also is asking the IMF for financial support. Meanwhile, in larger Asian economies such as India and South Korea, the sharp decline of their currencies also has spread anxiety.

 アジアでは、外貨が流出したパキスタンがIMFに支援を求めている。一方で、韓国、インドなど経済規模がより大きい国でも、通貨が急落し、不安が広がる。

The Asian currency crisis of about 10 years ago offers a bitter lesson. With the flight of foreign investment funds from Thailand, the Thai baht plunged, triggering the spread of the crisis to other Asian countries, including Indonesia and South Korea.

 約10年前に起きたアジア通貨危機は苦い教訓だ。海外からの投資マネーが逃避して、タイの通貨バーツが暴落したのをきっかけに、インドネシアや韓国にも危機が波及した。

Some observers say there is a low possibility of a recurrence of an Asian currency crisis because these days, each Asian country has larger foreign currency reserves compared with a decade ago.

 当時と比べると、アジア各国の外貨準備高は積み上がり、あのような通貨危機の再発の可能性は低いという見方がある。

===

Neglect may breed mischief

However, a little neglect may breed great mischief. The spread of the current financial crisis should be stopped by strengthening a safety net that will make it easier for countries on the brink of financial collapse to access IMF loans.

 しかし、油断は禁物だ。財政破綻(はたん)の危機にある国を支えるためのIMF融資を使いやすくするなど、安全網を広げ、危機の拡散を食い止めねばならない。

It also is an urgent task to prepare a framework to set up an emergency foreign exchange crisis fund between the group of Japan, China and South Korea and other Asian countries.

 日中韓とアジア各国が緊急時に外貨を融通しあう枠組みの充実も急務といえる。

Japan, the United States and advanced economies in Europe need to strengthen their wide range of support for developing countries, including food aid.

 日米欧の先進国を中心に、食糧援助を含めた幅広い途上国支援を強化することも求められる。

A financial summit meeting is expected to be held in Washington on Nov. 15, to be attended by the Group of Eight major powers along with emerging economies. The summit meeting should be a venue to give an additional impetus to enhancing the Asia-Europe partnership and map out stronger and more concrete measures to address the current financial crisis.

 来月15日にワシントンで、G8(主要8か国)に新興国を加えた金融サミット(首脳会議)が開かれる。アジア・欧州の連携強化にさらに弾みをつけ、より強力で具体的な対策を打ち出し、金融危機を乗り切らなければならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 26, 2008)

200810260202  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月25日 (土)

2025の医療費

2008/10/25 --The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 24(IHT/Asahi: October 25,2008)

EDITORIAL: Social security expenses

医療費の推計―負担増へ工程表を示せ

      

The national council on social security, an advisory panel to the prime minister, on Thursday publicized its forecast of medical and nursing care expenses in 2025 and estimates of revenues needed to cover them.

 政府の社会保障国民会議が、2025年に予想される医療・介護費と、それをまかなうのに必要な財源の推計を公表した。 

The report calls for a drastic increase in the number of hospital doctors and staff, the doubling of nursing facilities and group homes from the current level and improvements in the quality of medical and nursing care. As the aging of society advances, more money will be needed for health care.

The report estimates that an additional 14 trillion yen in public funds would be needed to cover such expenses. If the increased cost is to be covered by revenues from the consumption tax, a rate hike by 4 percentage points is needed, according to the report.

 病院の医師や職員を大幅に増やし、介護施設やグループホームを今の倍にして、医療と介護の質を高める。お年寄りの増加に伴って膨らむ費用を加えると、約14兆円の新たな公費負担、消費税に換算して4%の引き上げが必要になる、といった内容だ。 

Traditionally, estimates of medical expenses tended to focus mainly on future prospects based on past trends and demographic changes, as well as how to curb expected growth in the expenses.

 これまで医療費の推計といえば、過去の医療費の傾向や人口の変化をもとにした将来予測と、それをどうやって抑えるかが議論の中心だった。 

This time, the panel turned its attention to how medical and nursing care systems should be and what services will be needed. We welcome this major shift from past policies that focused only on curbing expenses.

 今回、望ましい医療や介護の姿、必要なサービスに目を向け始めたことは、抑制一辺倒だった政策を改める新たな芽として歓迎したい。 

Of course, the recently released estimates also took into account measures to check medical expenses. In exchange for reinforcing medical personnel at hospitals and strengthening rehabilitation functions, the report calls for halving hospital stays, which now stand at an average of 20 days.

The proposal is based on the assumption that the trend to shift emphasis from medicine to nursing and from care at facilities to care at home will be further promoted.

 もちろん、今回の推計にも医療費の抑制策は織り込まれている。一般病院での治療に手厚く人を配置してリハビリに力を入れる代わりに、今は平均で20日の入院期間を半分ほどに縮める。医療から介護へ、施設から在宅へ、という流れをさらに推し進めることが前提になっている。 

Even with such restrictive measures, the council estimates that total medical and nursing care expenses would go up to 91 trillion to 94 trillion yen in 2025, requiring public funds to cover 30 trillion yen of the total.

 そうした抑制策をとってもなお、医療・介護費は最低限これだけ膨らむということだろう。 

The latest estimates do not include the proposal by the government and ruling parties to re-examine the newly introduced health-care insurance system designed for people 75 or older. Depending on the content of the revision, it is possible that more public funds will be needed.

 今回の推計には、政府・与党が言い出した後期高齢者医療制度の見直しのことは入っていない。見直しの内容しだいでは、さらに公費を投入しなければならないこともあるだろう。 

According to the estimates, an additional 12 trillion yen would be needed in health and nursing insurance premiums. Although it is unclear which age groups would be required to shoulder how much, there are limits on hiking insurance premiums. Again, an injection of public funds may be needed to curb the increase in premiums.

 推計では、新たに必要となる保険料は12兆円だ。どの世代がどのくらい負担するのかははっきりしないが、保険料の引き上げには限度がある。保険料の上昇を抑えるために、ここでも公費の投入が必要になるかもしれない。 

Given these factors, we cannot help but worry whether a 4-percentage-point increase in the consumption tax rate can really meet swelling medical and nursing expenses. But the biggest problem is the report offers no clues on how to come up with the money.

 そう考えていくと、本当に消費税4%分の引き上げで医療・介護費の増加をまかなえるのか、心配になる。 

 だが、何より問題は財源をひねり出す道筋がはっきり見えないことだ。 

Prime Minister Taro Aso appointed council chairman Hiroshi Yoshikawa, a University of Tokyo economics professor at the Graduate School of Economics, as a private-sector member of another key panel, the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy.

By doing so, Aso aims to advance the argument for social security issues and tax and fiscal reforms as one. Meanwhile, however, he has also indicated he would not raise the consumption tax rate for three years based on his belief that it would take three years for the nation's economy to fully recover.

 麻生首相は、国民会議座長の吉川洋・東大大学院教授を経済財政諮問会議の民間議員に据えた。社会保障と税財政の改革の議論を一体で進めるという。ところが一方で、「日本経済は全治3年」として、3年間は消費税を引き上げない考えを示している。 

We understand how difficult it is to seek public approval for requiring citizens to immediately shoulder a heavier burden under the current economic situation. But avoiding the issue does not solve the problem.

The government should at least show a future vision of the social security system and present a concrete plan on how to financially achieve the stated goal. The same goes for opposition Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan).

 今の経済情勢のもとで、ただちに国民に負担増を求めることが難しい事情もわかる。だが、国民の安心を言うならば、社会保障の将来像とともに、どのように財源を裏付けていくのか、具体的な工程表を示すべきだ。そのことは政権を奪おうとしている民主党にも求められている。 

In advancing the policies, the government must also not forget to deal with the shortage of doctors and nursing care providers, which is already starting to affect everyday life. If it only speaks about future visions without properly dealing with the problem, it lacks persuasiveness.

 もちろん、その際には、すでに足元で広がっている医師や介護の担い手の不足への対応も忘れてはならない。そこをおろそかにして、将来のビジョンだけを語っても、説得力に欠ける。 

| | コメント (0)

日印首脳会談

(Mainichi Japan) October 24, 2008

A welcome expansion of cooperation between Japan and India

社説:日印首脳会談 協力のすそ野拡大は歓迎だが

Prime Minister Taro Aso and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh agreed Wednesday to expand cooperation across a wide range of areas including politics, economics, and security. In order to expand the reach of Japan's Asian diplomacy, it will certainly be meaningful for Japan to pay special attention to relations with India, which has been boosting its stature in the international community.

 麻生太郎首相とインドのシン首相が会談し、政治、経済、安全保障など多面的な分野で協力を拡大していくことを確認した。国際社会で存在感を増しているインドとの関係を大事にすることは日本のアジア外交の幅を広げるうえでも意義がある。

Japan and India established diplomatic relations 56 years ago, but it was not until three years ago that the leaders of these two countries began to hold regular summit meetings. Since then Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi visited India in April 2005, yearly reciprocal visits have become an established tradition. We welcome the fact that the leaders of both countries have confirmed that the reciprocal visits will continue.

 日本とインドが国交を結んだのは56年も前だが、首脳が定期的に会談するようになったのはつい3年前からのことだ。05年4月に当時の小泉純一郎首相が訪印して以来、年1回の首脳相互訪問が定着してきた。両首脳が相互訪問の継続を確認したことを歓迎したい。

India is an important partner to Japan, and its stability is vital to Japan's energy security because oil is transported to Japan from the Middle East via sea lanes in the Indian Ocean.

 日本にとってインドは大切なパートナーだ。インド洋は中東原油の日本への輸送ルートであるシーレーン(海上交通路)の安全確保上重要であり、インドの安定は日本のエネルギー安全保障上、欠かせない。

Japan's ties with India are also important for efforts to reform the United Nations. In the 2005 negotiations to expand the size of the United Nations Security Council, Japan and India, along with Germany and Brazil, formed a "Group of Four" to push this cause, though their initiative never saw the light of day.

 国連改革でも連携が必要だ。05年の安全保障理事会拡大をめぐる交渉では、日の目は見なかったものの、ドイツ、ブラジルとともに「G4」というグループをつくった仲だ。

The Japan-India economic relationship is also growing stronger, albeit at a gradual pace. Japan is India's 10th largest trading partner, and India is Japan's 27th largest trading partner. Since Japan and India are Asia's first and third largest economies, respectively, there is plenty of room for expanded economic cooperation.

 経済分野でも、徐々にではあるが関係が深まっている。ただ、アジアで第1位と第3位の経済規模をもつ両国の関係からすれば、インドの貿易相手国として日本が10位、日本の貿易相手国としてインドが27位というのは、協力拡大の余地がまだかなりあるということだろう。

The two leaders issued a joint declaration that touched on infrastructure projects in India, the progress of negotiations on an Economic Partnership Agreement, and cooperation on climate change. A joint statement on security cooperation was also issued.

 両首脳はインドのインフラ整備や経済連携協定(EPA)交渉の進展、気候変動問題での連携などを盛り込んだ共同声明とともに、安全保障協力に関する共同宣言も発表した。

Japan-India security cooperation will consist of exchanging information on the Asia-Pacific region, working together within the multilateral framework of East Asian summit meetings, and engaging in a dialogue on defense issues. India is only the third country with which Japan has entered into a cooperative security agreement. The others are the U.S. and Australia. While the agreement merely puts down on paper what has already been achieved in reality, there will be a need to pay close attention to how this arrangement is handled in order to avoid needlessly provoking China.

 安保協力はアジア太平洋地域に関する情報交換、東アジア首脳会議などの多国間の枠組みでの協力、防衛対話などを確認したものだ。日本が安全保障に関する協力を明文化したのは、米国以外ではオーストラリアに次いで2国目だ。これまで実践してきたことを文書化したものではあるが、中国にいらぬ刺激を与えないよう運用面での配慮が必要だ。

When Prime Minister Singh conveyed his hope to cooperate with Japan in the future on nuclear power for civilian purposes, Prime Minister Aso replied, "We urge you to adhere to promises and proper behavior with regard to the nuclear testing moratorium. Various factors need to be given consideration."

 シン首相は民生用原子力について将来の日本の協力を希望する考えを伝え、麻生首相は「核実験のモラトリアム継続を含め約束と行動をしっかりしてほしい。さまざまな要素を考慮する必要がある」と答えた。

India, which is not a signatory to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), has been granted a special exemption in order to receive nuclear fuel and technology under the U.S.-India nuclear cooperation pact. But this arrangement will gut the NPT framework and reverse the progress of international nuclear disarmament efforts. There is also concern that it will have a negative impact on the six-party talks being held to urge North Korea to abandon its nuclear program. It is only to be expected that Prime Minister Aso avoided discussing details of nuclear cooperation during his meeting with his Indian counterpart.

 核拡散防止条約(NPT)に非加盟のインドを特例扱いにして核燃料や核技術を提供する米印原子力協力協定が発効したが、これはNPT体制を形骸(けいがい)化させ国際的な核軍縮に逆行するものだ。北朝鮮に核廃棄を迫る6カ国協議の論議にも悪影響を及ぼすことが懸念される。麻生首相が今回、原子力協力の具体論に踏み込まなかったのは当然である。

The joint Japan-India statement on defense did include language on disarmament and nonproliferation, however, Japan should continue to pressure India to renounce nuclear testing.

 「軍縮・不拡散」は日印の安保協力共同宣言にも盛り込まれている。日本はインドの核実験放棄を強く迫っていくべきだ。

毎日新聞 20081023日 010

| | コメント (0)

日中首脳会談

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Oct. 25, 2008)

Japan, China must cooperate over crisis

日中首脳会談 金融危機も「互恵」で対処を(1025日付・読売社説)

In tackling the global financial crisis and attempting to resolve bilateral problems, Japan and China must cooperate swiftly and visibly for their mutual benefit.

 世界的な金融危機も、2国間の懸案解決も、迅速で目に見える形の互恵協力が欠かせない。

Prime Minister Taro Aso, who is in China to attend a meeting of the Asia-Europe Meeting, held talks with Chinese President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao for the first time since he assumed the premiership.

 アジア欧州会議(ASEM)出席のため訪中した麻生首相は、就任後初めて、中国の胡錦濤国家主席、温家宝首相と会談した。

In salutatory remarks he made at a subsequent reception to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the conclusion of the bilateral peace and amity treaty, Aso said: "We shouldn't allow ourselves to be constrained in the name of the 'Japan-China friendship.' Rather, sound competition and active cooperation will constitute a true 'mutually beneficial relationship based on common strategic interests.'"

 麻生首相は、引き続いて開かれた日中平和友好条約締結30周年記念レセプションであいさつし、「日中『友好』というお題目のために、互いに遠慮するような関係ではなく、切磋琢磨(せっさたくま)して協力していくことが、真の戦略的互恵関係だ」と表明した。

Japan-China relations were positive under the administrations of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Yasuo Fukuda. Aso made clear that his Cabinet will continue to pursue a strategic relationship of mutual benefit.

 日中関係は、安倍、福田両政権下で好転した。麻生内閣においても、この「戦略的互恵関係」の継承を明確にしたものだ。

In their meetings, the Japanese and Chinese leaders discussed the global financial crisis and agreed to strengthen the existing currency swap scheme to better prepare for the possibility of a currency crisis occurring in Asia, among other matters.

 会談で、日中両首脳は、米国発の金融危機に関し、アジアで通貨危機が起きた場合に備え、外貨を融通し合う枠組みを強化していくことなどで一致した。

This requires both nations to coordinate their policies from the viewpoint of pursuing shared interests to demonstrate to the world their determination to help stabilize the global financial system.

 金融システム安定化について、「日中共益」の観点から、両国で協調しながら、世界に発信していくということだろう。

===

Resolve pending problems

To strengthen the bilateral relationship to the benefit of both sides, pending problems between the two countries need to be resolved quickly.

 両国の互恵関係を強めていくには、2国間の懸案解決も急がなければならない。

According to the results of various opinion polls, Japanese people's sentiment toward China has been deteriorating, fueled by distrust of products made in China in the wake of the food-poisoning cases caused by frozen gyoza dumplings and contamination of baby formula with the industrial chemical melamine, to name just two product safety incidents involving China.

 各種世論調査でみると、日本国民の対中感情は悪化している。その背景に、冷凍ギョーザによる中毒事件や有害物質メラミンの粉ミルク混入など、中国産品への不信・不安がある。

The frozen gyoza poisoning case is still unresolved. A similar poisoning case involving gyoza took place in China. The most important thing for the Chinese side to do is find out whether the domestic case is connected to the Japanese case and get to the bottom of the matter.

 中国製冷凍ギョーザ事件は、依然として未解決だ。中国でも、日本と同様の中毒事件が起きている。中国側は、日本の事件との関連を解明し、真相を明らかにすることが何よりも大事だ。

On the issue of development of gas fields in the East China Sea, dubbed a touchstone for establishing a strategic relationship of mutual benefit, a political agreement was reached in June, but no talks have so far been held toward implementing its conclusions.

 戦略的互恵関係の試金石ともされた東シナ海のガス田開発問題は、6月に政治的合意がなされたが、具体的実施に向けた話し合いは始まっていない。

To demonstrate to the people of both countries the bilateral benefits that can be obtained through joint development, the Chinese side needs to accept Japan's call for such an approach and start negotiations on it immediately.

 共同開発によって得られる双方の利益を両国民に示していくためにも、中国側は、日本側の求めに応じ、速やかに交渉に入る必要があろう。

===

3-way summit meaningful

Aso also met with South Korean President Lee Myung Bak, and the two confirmed their intention to strengthen their nations' cooperation on the issues of North Korea's nuclear program and its past abduction of Japanese, as well as measures to deal with the financial crisis.

 麻生首相は、韓国の李明博大統領とも会談し、北朝鮮の核・拉致問題をはじめ、金融危機への対応でも、日韓間の連携を強化することを確認した。

In this way, Aso is trying to repair the bilateral relationship, which chilled after the Education, Science and Technology Ministry included the issue of the Takeshima islets in the instruction manual for the new teaching guidelines for middle school social studies classes.

 文部科学省が中学社会科の新学習指導要領解説書に「竹島」を明記したことを契機に、冷え込んだ両国関係の修復を図った形だ。

It is now likely that a three-way summit among Japan, China and South Korea will be held within the year in this country. In that sense, cooperation among the three countries over issues of global urgency will have further importance.

 年内には、日本で日中韓首脳会談が開かれる見通しになった。国際的な喫緊の課題をめぐる3か国の協力が、一層重要になる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 25, 2008)

200810250154  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月16日 (木)

今週のお勧め

スラ塾大学の英字新聞研究(国立大学受験生必見)
   毎日更新の英字新聞各社記事(スラチャイも国立大卒業生です)
   英字新聞(読売)

   英字新聞(毎日)
   英字新聞(朝日)


Srachai's Shopping Mall  *スラチャイのショッピングモールでお買物
A-Mall  S-Mall
  N-Mall  F-Mall  C-Mall  G-Mall

new!クリップポートのご紹介(クリップポートとは?)
ご購入はこちらから↓


●未来のアフィリエイト予想図へもの申す!(抗議文)

豊富なアド情報、アフィリエイトの技術をお楽しみください

●スラチャイの実録使用体験記→【もっとアクセスUP】

●日本最大のコミュ♪ハッピーメールキャンペーン実施中

●NEW!(10/1)ビギナーAS様限定!マイファーストアフィリエイト! 

●【競馬予想サイトで当てよう!秋のGI!】競馬プログラム特集

●有名シェフ厳選の雑穀★TVで大人気の商材も多数! 

●★★ OCN光&プラチナ・ラインで高額報酬をGETしよう ★★

●【秋の味覚狩り特集】味覚の秋を楽しめるA8オススメグルメ特集

KBBプロジェクトメンバー宮迫愛用のスカルプDに女性用誕生!

うれヽ(´▽`)/しぃ~!あのウイルス対策ソフトがキャンペーン中

good!完全無料サイト for 恋人さがし!★コミュニティ【SENTAR】

●睡眠薬依存症におちいっている人たちにとって、睡眠薬脱出を支援するジョイフルライフのサプリメントはまさに救世主、このサプリメントで睡眠障害を克服しましょう→スラチャイの実録体験記
↓医者も薦めている【安全・確実】の『不眠解決』サプリメント
天然素材だけで作られた

●8年前タイに移住したときのスラチャイの体重は83キロ、現在の体重は60キロ、スラチャイ減量の秘密を明かします→スラチャイの実録体験記
↓有名メディアからも紹介されている話題のダイエット法
リバウンドもメタボも今年で卒業!!(Presented by Joiful Life)

●スラチャイの『アフィリエイトバイブル』(めざせ脱初心者!)
やっと見つけました、アフィリエイト初心者の脱初心者術!
第一弾を完全無料で提供いたします。
わずらわしいクリック誘導型のメールアドレスの送信など一切なし!
ズバリこの場で無料で価値のある情報を提供いたします。
アフィリエイトで毎月安定した収益を得たいと心の底から思っている人は下のラッキー猫姫様をクリックしてください。
↓↓↓


毎日5000円以上GETできる方法
Smileアフィリエイトの裏技第1弾、アフィリエイト初心者必見!
★レポートの閲覧はこちらからどうぞ★

●ノースショアの思い出 (Srachai's Special)
私はハレイワで約1年間過ごしたことがある。ハレイワは小さな田舎町、小さな美しい教会があり、ハレイワスーパーマーケットはこの教会の横にある。わたしは小さいけれど品揃えの豊富なハレイワスーパーマーケットでよくお買物をした。
【ハレイワスーパーマーケット】では今無料のメンバー登録実施中。ハレイワのビーチの写真も見ることが出来ます。サーフィンしたいですね!
               
その他のハワイ関連商品サイトここからジャンプ

| | コメント (0)

ネコに聞け!

招き猫が教える今日の運勢!猫に聞け!

米国の大手証券会社の倒産の影響を受けて世界中の株価が低迷しています。スラチャイもこれで損をしました。じたばたしてもしかたがない。ここは一発大逆転を狙って猫頼み。苦しいときの猫頼み!アメリカどうした!忘れるな、フロンティアスピリッツ!

6枚のバナーのうち1枚が▲大当たりです。スラチャイ編曲のギター曲をプレゼント。残りの5枚のバナーは●印の5社のサイトにリンクしています。
●カーコンビニ倶楽部
●副業の決定版!在宅ワークで副収入ならテトラシステム
●大手ハウスメーカー新築分譲物件サイト【家選びネット】
●【株式会社JTB】「スタッフけんさくん」
●「エックスサーバー」
▲大当たり (スラチャイ編曲のギター名曲選集)

1回目で▲にヒット→大吉(何をやってもうまくいく一日)
2回目で▲にヒット→吉(充実した一日)
3回目で▲にヒット→末吉(まずまずの一日)
4回目で▲にヒット→凶(行動はひかえめに、あせらずに…)
5回目で▲にヒット→大凶(家で寝ていたほうがよいかも…)
6回目で▲にヒット→超大吉(あなたの夢がかなうかも…)

それではどうぞ、お楽しみください♪


≪9/30まで≫大人気ダイエット&美容商品

ナチュラルガーデン 
ダイエット、健康食品、女性の育毛ケアーまで幅広い商品を展示!
ナチュラルガーデンのすべて no.1
ナチュラルガーデンのすべて no.2


おいしいミネラルウォーターで日本の残暑を乗り切ろう!
ミネラルウォーター Best 11 in Japan selected by srachai

●a8のアフィリエイトプログラム
a8で用意しているプログラムのほぼすべてを掲載しました。
a8では下記のリストに示すように、客先や広告主様のニーズに対処するための様々なプログラムを用意しています。まだAs会員でないお客様はこの機会に是非
a8に無料会員登録していただき、アフィリエイト活動でお小遣いを稼ぎましょう。

● お勧めのバナー






new!信頼のJTBスタッフに相談↓↓↓(海外格安航空券もOK)

| | コメント (0)

My Best Sellections

ベストセレクション(Sep07)

●在宅副業
副業の決定版!在宅ワークで副収入ならテトラシステム
ノーリスクでネットショップ開設! しかも稼げる!?
そんな夢の副業をテトラシステムが実現・実行します!


●住宅情報

大手ハウスメーカー新築分譲物件サイト【家選びネット】
大手ハウスメーカーの新築一戸建てを検索!家選びネット

●レンタルサーバー

【お名前.com】ドメイン登録
世界にたった一つ、あなただけのドメインを登録しよう!

●旅行

【株式会社JTB】「スタッフけんさくん」
旅行の予約はJTBスタッフにお任せ!

●出会い
フィリピーナ専用ライブチャット【 エンジェルワールド(AngelWorld)】
フィリピンライブチャット エンジェルワールド

日本最大級の会員数を誇る出会いの総合コミュニティサイト!
ハッピーメール!

全国ホストクラブ・ホスト紹介サイト【ホストクラブネット】
ロマンスの陽生

●健康器具・ダイエット・健康食品

骨盤ケアで腰痛が!骨盤ハラマキ登場!【ウエストスリマー】
ウエストスリマー

ナチュラルガーデンの商品販売
さらさらスープ簡単ダイエット


この他多数のベストセレクション情報サイトを掲載しています。
↓↓↓
ベストセレクション情報サイト情報 seclected by srachai 

| | コメント (0)

スラチャイの宝物

最近発見した優れもの3種、ご紹介します。
この記事はいわゆる紹介記事ではありません。
スラチャイがバナーをえんえんと貼り付ける作業中選りすぐって手元に保存しておいた、いわばスラチャイの宝物です。
(1)
私はメモをとるのが苦手で仕事上たいへんな苦労をした経験があります。
メモによる記録には限界を感じ、すぐにソニーの当時世界最小のマイクロカセットテープレコーダを購入し、これを多いに活用しました。私はPCにインプットするのはかなりの速度で出来ましたので、大量のテープのメモをその日のうちにすべて文字情報に変換することですべて与えられた仕事をほぼ完璧にこなすことができました。人間の記憶力には限界があります。超小型の音声記録装置を使うべきです。
↓↓↓
PC対応 ボールペン型ICボイスレコーダー

(2)
私は現役時代主に海外で英語をつかって仕事をしていました。
英語には不自由していなかったのですが、その他の国の言語はやはり難しくて、ことばが通じないことで苦労した経験があります。ごく簡単な日常会話ならば十分にこのような電子翻訳機を携帯することにより、仕事も旅行もよりいっそう楽しいものになると確信します。
↓↓↓
『14ヶ国語おしゃべり翻訳機』

(3)
アドセンスのバナーを貼り付ける作業中にこんなすぐれものを発見!
タイピングのあまり得意でない人たちにとっては救世主的役割を果たすのではないでしょうか。
↓↓↓
ペン型辞書『クイックショナリー2ジーニアス』




(4)
新発見 New! 17Sep ↓
フィギュア・玩具・ホビー系商品のECサイト《願望百貨店》
←可愛いですね♪

| | コメント (0)

スラチャイのミックアドセンス

スラチャイのミックスアドセンス
↓↓↓

●霊界探求
世界の不思議を探求【もりけんドットコム】
お盆・お彼岸の墓参という行為は、果たして先祖に届くのでしょうか?
今だからこそ注目! 森田健著「生まれ変わりの村1」、絶賛発売中!


●家庭教師・学習

【家庭教師のあすなろ】★無料体験・入会申込★
無料の体験授業やってます

●中古車

中古車を探す車ポータルサイト【Goonet】
中古車登録台数 国内最大級の30万台 Goo!

●美容・健康♪

美人は姿勢で決まる!姿勢とお腹をスッキリ見せる【姿勢ウォーカー】
姿勢ウォーカー

●レンタルサーバー
ファーストサーバのレンタルサーバー・アフィリエイトプログラム
ファーストサーバ

●健康食品
ナチュラルガーデンの商品販売プログラム
ナチュラルガーデン本店・ウイルダイレクト

●ホームページ紹介

エスプリラインホームページ紹介プログラム
株式会社エスプリライン

●英会話
エスプリラインホームページ紹介
株式会社エスプリライン


●株式・外国為替・FX

外国為替取引サービスの【kakakuFX】
手数料無料のFX kakakuFX


●電気機器
海外旅行用変圧器を即日全国発送いたします
モリデンJP


●介護福祉

介護・福祉専門の求人情報サイト「しごとの山」
介護・福祉のお仕事探すなら【しごとの山】!!


この他多数のミックスアドセンス情報サイトを掲載しています。
↓↓↓
ミックスアドセンス情報情報サイト情報 seclected by srachai

| | コメント (0)

Special Collections ♪

●スラチャイのスペシャルコレクション
PC対応 ボールペン型ICボイスレコーダー
録音できるボールペン

●雑貨・オンラインショップ
オンラインショップ
人気セレクトショップのオンラインショップ

●時計
【ベゼル時計店】高級腕時計
ベゼル時計店

●ファッション
ファッション通販サイト【nuan+(ニュアン)】
nuan+ (ニュアン)


●メンズファッション
雑誌でも掲載中のメンズファッション【G─Cells】
メンズファッション通販【G-Cells】 

●キッズファッション
キッズモデル・子役なら【キャストネット】
赤ちゃん~15歳のキッズモデル大募集!登録はこちら

●健康・ヘルス
モテル女の新常識♪攻めのモテボディにはコレ!【ジャムウスティック】
もう、クサイなんて絶対言わせない!!

●登山用品
登山・アウトドアを中心としたスポーツ専門店!ICI石井スポーツ
登山・アウトドア・スポーツ専門店【ICI石井スポーツ】

この他多数のスペシャルコレクション情報サイトを掲載しています。
↓↓↓
スペシャルコレクション情報情報サイト情報 seclected by srachai

| | コメント (0)

ポイント・アンケートサービス

タイのスラチャイです。多くの熱心なアフィリテーター、アドセンサーのためにポイントサービスサイト・アンケートサイトに特化して情報収集いたしました。ご利用ください。
掲載は各1例のみです。各例最下段のリンクに最新情報が満載。

ポイントサービスサイト:


ポイントバックサイト寶ポイント

この他にポイントサイト多数あり、新着便追加更新済み(2008-09-07)
↓↓↓
ポイントサービスサイト

アンケートサイト:


僅かの手間で僅かの金額をゲット。
折角のインターネット、利用しない手はないですね。


【男性対象】マクロミルモニタ募集プログラム

【マクロミル】男性アンケートモニタ大募集!
ただいまマクロミルでは、男性のアンケートモニタを募集中です!
アンケートに回答してポイントを貯めよう!貯まったポイントは、
イーバンク銀行口座に換金したり、商品券と交換できます★


【女性対象】マクロミルモニタ募集プログラム

☆★☆マクロミル アンケートモニタ募集中☆★☆
市場調査に参加しませんか?アンケートに回答して、ポイントを貯めよう!
貯まったポイントは、イーバンク銀行口座へ換金したり、商品券に交換できます!


簡単なアンケートに答えて僅かな金額を得る。
毎日情報確認して更新するスラチャイの無料サービスをご利用ください。(最下段のリンク参照)


本日新着アンケートサイトを追加更新済み(2008-09-07)
↓↓↓

アンケートサイト

| | コメント (0)

出会い系+結婚情報サイト

2種類の出会い系サイト+結婚情報サイトを用意しました♪

コミュニティー系サイト:

出会いはいつでも、偶然の風の中・・・♪


マイダーリン


日本最大級の会員数を誇る出会いのコミュニティーサイト!


他のコミュニティー系サイトを見る→コミュニティー

チャット系サイト:

二人の愛、天までとどけ!


業界初フィリピーナ専門ライブチャット


他のチャット系サイトを見る→チャット

結婚情報:

スラチャイが結婚情報サイトをお勧めします。

ここできっと見つかりますよ♪


出会いはいつも、偶然の風の中…

花嫁必見の「ブライダルエステ」


その他の結婚情報サイトを見る→結婚情報

| | コメント (0)

ASP(アフィリエートサービス)

ASPサイト情報

スラチャイ提携ASPサイト122件一挙掲載!
(2002/08/25)


ASPってなに?
Affiliate Service Provider のことだと思いますが、まだ確認できていません。辞書にもみあたりませんね。
スラチャイが主に利用しているASPサイトは下記の4社です。
(1)
a8_blog

(2)
seesaa_blog
Seesaa ブログ - 無料のブログ(blog)サービス
(3)
fc2_blog

(4)
ninja_blog

忍者ブログ 無料Blog -

他のASP・ソフトウェアー情報を見る
↓↓↓
ASP(WEBサービス)・ソフトウェア (0820)
ASP(WEBサービス)・ソフトウェア (01-20)
ASP(WEBサービス)・ソフトウェア (21-40)
ASP(WEBサービス)・ソフトウェア (41-60)
ASP(WEBサービス)・ソフトウェア (61-80)
ASP(WEBサービス)・ソフトウェア (81-100)
ASP(WEBサービス)・ソフトウェア (101-120)
ASP(WEBサービス)・ソフトウェア (121-140)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月13日 (月)

株価暴落

2008/10/13 --The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 11(IHT/Asahi: October 13,2008)

EDITORIAL: Stock markets on ropes

株価暴落―不安の連鎖を断ち切れ

Stock markets around the world appear to be trapped in a downward spiral. On Friday in Tokyo, the Nikkei Stock Average temporarily fell by more than 1,000 points, approaching a level only about 500 points above the post-bubble low of 7,607. The benchmark index plunged by more than 3,000 points in seven trading days.

 株価暴落の世界的な連鎖が止まらない。きのうの東京では日経平均株価が一時1000円以上も安くなり、バブル後の最安値7607円まであと500円ほどに迫った。7日間の取引で3000円以上も下落した。 

Among major stock markets, the Japanese market has suffered an especially steep fall in the latest round of global sell-offs.

 主要国のなかでも、日本株の落ち込みが激しい。

The explanation lies partly in the very factor that drove the economy's six-plus years of continued growth and partly in a problem that has been left unaddressed.

6年余の景気回復を支えた日本経済の強みと、陰で温存された弱みが同時に売られている。 

Strong exports served as the main engine of Japan's economic growth during the past several years. However, a resurgent yen--to about 97 yen to the dollar--combined with a global economic downturn has clouded earnings prospects of leading exporters. This has led investors to dump shares of blue-chip companies in such key export industries as automotive and electronics.

 強みは輸出だった。しかし、一時1ドル=97円台に突入する円高と世界不況による業績悪化の予想で、自動車や電機など主力株が売り込まれた。 

One major problem with the Japanese economy has been been that its securities markets are overly dependent on foreign investors. The financial crisis has triggered a rush of U.S. and European investors to dump their investments in overseas markets. And the Tokyo stock market has taken it on the chin.

 弱みは、証券市場が海外からの投資に頼りすぎていたことだ。欧米の投資家は金融危機を受け、海外での資金運用を縮小し引き揚げている。そのあおりを東京がもろに受けた。 

Similarly, the rolling crisis is depressing the Japanese real estate market, which has also been growing on the back of inflows of foreign capital. The downturn recently caused the first failure of an exchange-listed Japanese real estate investment trust (J-REIT).

 株と同様に外資依存で膨張してきた不動産市場でも収縮が止まらず、上場されている不動産投資信託(Jリート)が初めて破綻(はたん)した。 

Adding to this unpleasant economic news, Yamato Life Insurance Co., a midsize firm that invested heavily in REIT and other high-risk U.S. financial instruments, was forced into bankruptcy.

Yamato Life attracted customers by offering high returns on policies and tried to meet its liabilities by making high-return, high-risk investments. The financial crisis has made this hazardous strategy unsustainable.

 さらに、このリートや米国のハイリスク金融商品での資産運用が多かった中堅生保の大和(やまと)生命が破綻に追い込まれた。高利回りの保険で資金を集め、高リスクで運用する無理な経営が、金融危機に直撃された。 

Until now, the general perception has been that Japanese financial institutions should escape relatively unscathed and in basically good shape.

As a country that experienced its own banking crisis, the standard argument is that Japan can and should teach other countries how to respond to the current crisis.

But a fire has broken out in the financial sector in Japan. Taken off guard, the Tokyo stock market is now in deep distress.

The government and the financial authorities must first make an all-out effort to stop this wave of fear from growing and spreading.

 日本の金融機関は傷が浅いから大丈夫。日本は金融危機の経験者として、対応策を外国へ伝授する役だ。これまでそう思いがちだったが、足元から火が噴き出した。不意を突かれた株式市場は不安感が頂点に達している。 

 政府・金融当局は、まず不安の連鎖と増幅に歯止めをかけるよう、全力をあげなければならない。 

Yamato Life's collapse is certainly an exceptional case. If stocks keep plunging, however, some financial institutions may fall into serious trouble. Regulators should take a fresh look at the health of all financial institutions.

 大和生命の破綻は特殊なケースではあるが、株安がさらに進めば、苦境に陥る金融機関が出るかもしれない。当局は金融機関の経営内容を、いまいちど総点検してほしい。 

At the same time, the government should reinforce the safety net to make the financial system better prepared for their possible failures.

 同時に、破綻に備えて安全網を整備し直さないといけない。

A law authorizing the government to inject taxpayer money into smaller lenders to boost their capital bases expired at the end of March this year.

中小金融機関へ公的資金を注入するための「金融機能強化法」は、今年3月に期限が切れ失効している。

A program for public support to life insurance firms will also expire next spring.

生保への公的支援制度も来春で切れる。 

Both the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and main opposition Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan) are considering measures to deal with the crisis, including the revival of the law and an extension of the program.

 これらの復活・延長などを盛り込んだ対応策を自民、民主両党が検討している。

With local economies in the doldrums in many parts of the nation, some small- and medium-sized lenders are facing rough going.

地方経済の不振もあって、経営が苦しくなってきた中小金融機関もある。

All measures that can help improve the situation should be put together and implemented as quickly as possible.

取るべき対策を総まとめにして早急に実現させるべきだ。 

The finance ministers and central bank governors of the Group of Seven (G-7) leading industrial countries met in Washington on Friday and agreed to a plan to rescue the financial industry.

 主要7カ国財務相・中央銀行総裁会議(G7)が開かれる。

An emergency meeting of the leaders of the Group of Eight (G-8) major powers to discuss responses to the financial crisis is also being considered.

金融危機に対する主要国首脳会議(G8サミット)の開催も検討されている。

As the country holding the G-8 presidency this year, Japan should lead international cooperation to untangle this crisis.

日本はサミットの議長国として国際協調を主導しなければならない。 

We also have a request for Japan's leading companies. The global recession is indeed creating a tough business environment, but top Japanese companies have accumulated significant resource reserves during the years of economic expansion. They should now tap them to kick-start renewed growth in these difficult economic times.

 また、日本の主要企業にも注文したい。たしかに世界不況は逆風だが、これまでの好況でため込んだ蓄積も各企業にはある。逆境のときこそ、それを次の成長のために使ってほしい。

| | コメント (0)

夫婦別寝室のトレンド

(Mainichi Japan) October 10, 2008
Older couples giving each other space with separate bedrooms
夫と、妻と、一緒に寝てますか。

Among middle-aged and elderly couples, the old practice of lining up the pillows next to each other is out, and separate bedrooms are in. While some couples are predictably blaming this shift on a cooling relationship, many are describing it more as a lifestyle readjustment, and trends in new home construction and renovation are starting to reflect this.
(老後は夫婦別室で寝るのがトレンド?スラチャイはこのトレンドにはついていけません。
妻はタイ人ですが、やはり寝るときくらい一緒にすごさなくちゃね! by srachai)

Mitsui Home Remodeling Co.'s Lifestyle Labo conducted an internet opinion poll on the practice last autumn, quizzing 480 men and women between their 30s and 60s. Around 40 percent of men in their 60s, 40 percent of women in their 50s, and almost half the women in their 60s said they slept separately. Snoring was the most common reason given, although different lifestyle patterns and wanting time for themselves were also common responses. And while around 62 percent of respondents said they reached the decision as a couple, of the remainder, 25 percent said the idea was first proposed by the lady of the house, compared to just 9 percent saying the man.
(ご主人のいびきが主な原因、それと新しいライフスタイルを追求するため。スラチャイは古いスタイルで満足しています。)

After 34 years of living together in their Chiba home, business consultant Kensaku Hasegawa, 64, and his 59-year-old wife Mitsuko had separate bedrooms built during their renovation two years ago. Their three requests to builders were: no more sleeping on the second floor, and move all aspects of day-to-day living to ground level; separate early bird Kensaku's bed and night owl Mitsuko's futon, but still keep a sense of harmony; and, keep Kensaku's room close to the bathroom.
(2階に寝室を設けない、一階で日常生活のすべてをまかなう、寝室は別室とする)
(ちょっと淋しいんじゃないですか?by srachai)

Again, snoring was a major factor in the decision to separate their rooms, but as Kensaku had also suffered a mild stroke, Mitsuko wanted things so that she would notice straight away if it happened again, so the couple's rooms are separated only by a sliding door.
(寝室はうすい間仕切で。ちょっと安心しました。ご主人は脳梗塞の恐れがある)

For Kensaku, the new layout brings back the sense of freedom he had when he first worked away from home. "He's sleeping nearby so I can keep an eye on him, but I don't get disturbed," adds Mitsuko.
(ご主人…寝室を別室にして新しい発見、自由を手に入れた。)

"People were probably sleeping separately before, but it has this image of discord that makes it hard to talk about. But the number of couples who can proudly declare 'We sleep separately' has increased over the last year or two," says Lifestyle Labo chief Kyoko Nishida. "It would be better if people stopped thinking about separate bedrooms in terms of good or bad, and more whether it fits their lifestyles and circumstances."
(この2~3年、夫婦の寝室を別室にする人が増えている。スラチャイは夫婦同室派)

夫と、妻と、一緒に寝てますか。

 ◆夫と、妻と、一緒に寝てますか。

 ◇適度な距離感とって--「別寝」リフォーム、関心高まる
 中高年夫婦を中心に、これまで枕を並べて寝ていた習慣を改め、寝室を別にするスタイルへの関心が高まっている。「仲が冷えたから」という夫婦もいるが、多いのはむしろ“発展的解消”。住宅業界では「夫婦別寝(べっしん)」という用語も積極的に使われ始め、戸建て、マンションにかかわらずリフォームや新築物件が増えつつある。

 ●「様子は分かる」

 千葉県に住む経営コンサルタントの長谷川謙作さん(64)、学習教室講師の美都子さん(59)夫婦=ともに仮名=は一昨年夏、結婚時に建てた築34年の自宅のリフォームで別々の寝室を作った。

 設計に当たり、リフォーム会社に注文したのは主に(1)2階で寝るのをやめ、1階で日常生活が完結するようにしたい(2)早寝早起きでベッド派の謙作さんと宵っ張りで布団派の美都子さんの寝室を分けるが、気配は感じ合えるように(3)トイレが近くなってきた謙作さんに配慮した間取りに--の3点。

 謙作さんはいびきが大きく、それが別寝を選んだ大きな理由だったが、軽い脳梗塞(こうそく)を患った経験があることから、「もしもの時、すぐ気付けるように」(美都子さん)部屋は隣接させ、引き戸で仕切るだけにした。

 実際に寝室を分けてみて--。謙作さんは単身赴任時代に覚えた「一人で寝る解放感」を再び満喫している。それでも、引き戸を閉め切ることはあまりなく「早起きしてパソコンをいじったりする時は光と音が漏れないようにそっと閉めている」。一方、美都子さんは「近くで寝ているので何となく夫の様子は分かる。かと言って睡眠を邪魔されることはない」と適度な距離感が気に入っている。

 ●相手への配慮から

 三井のリフォーム住生活研究所(東京都)は、客からこうした要望が増えてきたことから昨秋、「夫婦の適度な距離感」をテーマに意識調査を行った。インターネットで30~60代の男女計480人に尋ねたところ、別寝派は全体で約3割いた。年齢別にみると男性では60代で4割、女性は50代で4割、60代だと5割近くに達した。「別寝のきっかけ・理由」は「いびきなどの不満」が上位に入ったものの、「生活リズムの違い」や「一人の時間がほしい」など相手への配慮や生活の質の向上のための前向きな答えも多かった=グラフ参照。また「別寝を言い出したのはどちら?」への答えでは「どちらからともなく」が62%を占めた。ただし「男性から」が9%だったのに対し、「女性から」は3倍近い25%あった。

 同研究所の西田恭子所長は「夫婦別寝は以前からあったはずだが、不仲のイメージがあって他人には言いづらかったのでは。『うちは別寝』と堂々と言う人が増えてきたのは、ここ1、2年。これからは別寝を良い悪いと決めつけてしまうのでなく、ライフスタイルや事情に応じて選べばいい」と話す。さらに「人生のステージに応じて見直せばいい」とも。心筋梗塞などの突然死は就寝中の発生が最も多い。別寝の夫婦でも70歳を超えると健康への不安から再び同寝室に戻る傾向があるという。【丹野恒一】

毎日新聞 2008年10月6日 東京朝刊

| | コメント (0)

テロ指定解除

(Oct. 13, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

Past sparks skepticism of N-verification deal

テロ指定解除 疑問の多い実効的な核検証(1012日付・読売社説)

The U.S. government has announced that it removed North Korea from its list of nations sponsoring terrorism. The decision was made after North Korea agreed to a series of measures to verify statements about its nuclear program which Pyongyang submitted in June.

 米政府は、北朝鮮に対するテロ支援国の指定解除を発表した。北朝鮮が今年6月に提出した核計画申告の検証方法をめぐる米朝協議の合意を受けたものだ。

U.S. President George W. Bush has said that North Korea's agreeing to a comprehensive and rigorous verification protocol for its nuclear activities is a prerequisite for being delisted as a state sponsor of terrorism. We wonder how well such a protocol is secured.

 ブッシュ大統領は、「包括的で厳密な検証手続きでの合意」を、解除の前提条件としていた。それはどこまで担保されたのか。

At upcoming six-party negotiations on Pyongyang's nuclear program expected to be resumed within this month, Japan must ascertain ambiguous elements of the agreement with the United States and North Korea and then establish a robust verification regime, which will not allow Pyongyang to conceal nuclear activities.

 月内にも再開される見通しの6か国協議で、日本政府は、あいまいな点を米朝にただし、北朝鮮に核の隠匿を許さない堅固な検証体制を確立しなければならない。

Although the details of the agreed verification scheme between the United States and North Korea have not been revealed, Washington explained, "Every element of verification that we sought is included in this package."

 米朝合意の詳細は公表されていないが、米国は「要求していたすべての要素が含まれている」と説明している。

But it is difficult to quell doubts about whether an effective nuclear verification regime can be realized considering the repeated concessions made by the United States in its negotiations with North Korea, as well as by Pyongyang's behavior to date.

 しかし、譲歩を重ねてきた米国の対北朝鮮交渉の経緯や、北朝鮮のこれまでの行動を振り返れば、実効ある核検証を実現できるのかどうか、疑念はぬぐえない。

===

Keeping track of fissile material

The pivotal element in North Korea's nuclear declaration is the production records for its plutonium, the key material for producing nuclear weapons. The verification procedures must confirm all of the plutonium that Pyongyang produces and possesses.

 北朝鮮の核申告書の中心は、核兵器の材料となるプルトニウムの生産記録だ。検証手続きは、少なくとも、北朝鮮が生産、保有しているプルトニウムの全量を確認できる内容であるべきだ。

The verification regime that the United States initially proposed was an exhaustive one--covering not only Pyongyang's plutonium program but also its manufacturing and experimenting with nuclear weapons, its uranium enrichment program and its proliferation activities. Such a broad scope is necessary because it is impossible to ensure North Korea is fully denuclearized without having a mechanism to verify the whole picture.

 米国が当初示した検証草案は、プルトニウムにとどまらず、核兵器製造・実験、ウラン濃縮や核拡散などの情報をも検証できる網羅的な内容だった。全容を検証する仕組みを欠いては、北朝鮮の核廃棄を確実なものとすることはできないからだ。

Negotiations faced rough going due to protests by Pyongyang. When the United States postponed delisting, North Korea said it halted the disablement process at its Yongbyon nuclear facility and was considering restarting operations at the facility. Pyongyang said it would not accept a house search by the United States of the sort performed in Iraq.

 北朝鮮の抵抗で、交渉は難航した。米国がテロ支援国指定解除を見送るや、北朝鮮は「イラクのような家宅捜索は受けない」として核施設の「無能力化」作業を中断、核開発再開の脅しをかけた。

===

Use of brinksmanship

When circumstances became adverse, North Korea used its usual maneuvering to bring about a crisis by shelving the execution of an agreement and pressing the United States for concessions.

 不利な状況になれば合意の履行を棚上げして危機を作り出し、米国に譲歩を迫る。いつもの駆け引きだったのだろう。

As a result, the disablement process at the Yongbyon facility, for which the deadline was set as the end of last year, remains at standstill.

 この結果、昨年末が期限だった「無能力化」は、現在もストップしたままだ。

North Korea has not yet launched a committee to reinvestigate the cases of Japanese abductions. It is therefore not surprising that the Cabinet approved Friday an extension of its ban on port calls by North Korean-registered vessels and all imports of goods from the country for another six months.

 北朝鮮は、日本人拉致被害者の再調査を行う委員会をいまだに設置していない。日本政府が、北朝鮮に対して実施してきた独自の制裁措置の延長を10日に閣議決定したのは、当然のことだ。

However, the government promised to lift its sanctions on chartered flights and the entry of North Korean nationals in return if Pyongyang sets up the committee. We will wait and see whether North Korea makes a move on this issue.

 ただ、日本政府は、北朝鮮が委員会を設置すれば、制裁を一部緩和し、人的往来やチャーター便乗り入れを認めるとしている。北朝鮮は動きを見せるのかどうか。

The United States repeatedly stressed that it will never forget the abduction of Japanese citizens by the North Koreans. Japan and the United States, reinforcing bilateral cooperation, must strongly press North Korea to resolve not only the denuclearization issue but also the abduction issue.

 米国は、拉致問題を忘れないと再三、強調している。核だけでなく拉致問題でも、日米の連携を強化し、北朝鮮に解決を強く迫らなくてはならない。

(From the late editionof The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 12, 2008)

200810120148  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月12日 (日)

追加経済対策

2008/10/11 --The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 10(IHT/Asahi: October 11,2008)

EDITORIAL: More stimulus measures

追加経済対策―「安全網」の再構築こそ


'Restoring fiscal health is extremely important, but for Japan at present, economic recovery is the top priority." This is a passage from an economic policy speech delivered by then Economic Planning Agency chief Taichi Sakaiya at the Diet eight years ago, when the administration of Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi was struggling with Japan's home-grown economic crisis. Strikingly similar refrains have been coming recently from the mouths of top government and ruling coalition officials, including Prime Minister Taro Aso.

 「財政の健全化はきわめて重要だ。しかし、現在の日本には、景気回復が最優先課題だ」 

 8年前、「経済国難」といわれた小渕内閣の時代に、堺屋太一経済企画庁長官が国会の経済演説で述べた言葉だ。最近そっくりな言い回しを、麻生首相をはじめ政府・与党から聞く。 

On Thursday, the day after the Lower House passed a supplementary budget to finance an emergency spending package, Aso ordered an additional shot in the arm for the faltering economy.

 補正予算案が衆院を通過したばかりだが、麻生首相は追加の経済対策をまとめるよう指示を出した。 

The precise scope of the global financial tempest that started in the United States still remains unclear. It is, however, certain that the crisis will seriously affect the U.S. and other economies around the world. The global economy is still in the early stages of a major downturn. It should be assumed that it will be years before the current crisis comes to an end and global economic conditions start improving.

 米国発の世界的な金融危機は、まだ全体像を計りがたい。米国をはじめとして世界の景気は、これから深刻な打撃を受けるだろう。経済の悪化はまだ入り口の段階にある。危機を脱出し、経済を立ち直らせるには、何年もかかると考えておいた方がいい。 

The nation's economy, which had been on an upward trajectory for several years in its longest postwar expansion, due mainly to strong export growth, is bound to suffer badly from the cascading effects of the financial sector's implosion. We need to steel ourselves to deal with relentless downward pressures on the domestic economy.

 輸出主導で戦後最長の景気回復を保ってきた日本経済も、手痛い影響を受けざるを得ない。私たちはそれくらいの覚悟をもって、この負の圧力に立ち向かっていかねばならない。 

It is the job of politicians to plan and implement policy measures to calm public anxiety under such circumstances. What is troubling is that the Aso administration appears to be inclined toward old-school fiscal actions, such as tax cuts and public works spending, to pump up the economy. The administration has indicated a willingness to issue new government bonds to finance these measures if necessary.

 こうした状況で、国民の不安を抑えるための政策を検討し実行するのは政治の役目である。しかし、麻生政権の考え方は、まず減税や公共事業など財政出動による旧来型の景気対策ありきと見受けられる。その財源には、国債の増発も「場合によってはやむを得ない」とされている。 

All this sounds like a return to the days of the Obuchi administration, which spent huge amounts on public works projects and tax reductions. It is hard to resist the temptation to lampoon Aso's response to the situation as a reflexive resort to the old cure for economic ills. A series of fiscal stimulus packages to steer the economy out of the doldrums following the early 1990s collapse of stock and land speculation bubbles have saddled the central government alone with 550 trillion yen of debt. This pyramid of public debt places a tight constraint on state finances.

 公共事業や減税を大盤振る舞いした小渕内閣の路線へ、まるで逆戻りしたようだ。「困った時の常備薬」。そんな皮肉を言いたくもなる。バブル不況から脱出するために景気対策を連発した結果、国だけで550兆円もの国債残高が積み上がり、財政が身動きできなくなってしまった。 

A new spending drive could be conceivable if there were more fiscal leeway. But the fiscal resources available are very limited. The economic downturn has just begun and is likely to shape up as a lengthy and deep recession. The precious little money available to deal with the slump must be used in the most effective way possible at the most effective time.

 財政に余裕があるならまだ分かるが、使える財源はごく限られている。今回の不況はまだ始まったばかりで、先が長く底も深そうだ。なけなしの財源は、いちばん効果的なときに有効な方法で使わねば意味がない。 

Given the aging and shrinking population, what the government should do now is push through an overhaul of the social security system for its long-term sustainability. It will be impossible to restore public confidence without rebuilding the social safety net. This may sound like a roundabout way to re-energize the floundering economy, but this approach will eventually start stoking domestic demand.

 いま取り組むべきなのは、少子高齢化が本格化していくのに備えて、社会保障を組み替え、維持していくことではないか。「安全網」の再構築なしに国民の安心は得られない。遠回りのように見えるが、それが結局は内需を充実させることにつながるに違いない。 

At a recent session of the Lower House Budget Committee, Seiji Maehara, former chief of main opposition Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan), urged the government to reallocate a considerable portion of tax revenues earmarked for road-related projects to social security programs. People's concerns about job security and post-retirement life are issues that should be tackled now.

 民主党の前原誠司前代表は衆院予算委で、道路財源を社会保障へ大胆に振り分けるよう求めた。雇用や老後など不安が高まりそうな分野の「安全網」を強めるこうした手だてこそ重要だ。 

The government should offer loan guarantees to ensure continued flows of money into small and medium-sized companies that are facing a cash squeeze due to the financial crisis. It may also be effective to provide policy support to companies trying to protect the jobs of their employees and change their business models for growth driven more by domestic demand.

 金融危機のあおりで資金繰りが厳しくなってきた中小企業へ、信用保証で資金を回す。雇用確保や内需型への転換に努力する企業に対し、応援する政策も有効かもしれない。 

Instead of public spending and tax cuts that are spread thin across the economy, the government should focus on providing carefully planned policy support to areas where it will be really effective. We hope the Aso administration will adopt this strategy in putting together a new package of measures to save the sinking economy.

 薄く広く予算や減税をばらまくのではなく、効果があがりそうな分野へきめ細かく対策を打つ。そうした対策づくりを求めたい。

| | コメント (0)

kensho

●懸賞・メルマガ



●競馬

| | コメント (0)

世界金融危機の中の麻生首相

(Mainichi Japan) October 11, 2008

Prime Minister Aso's 'Inchworm Cabinet' stalling in face of international financial crisis

記者の目:世界金融危機の中の麻生首相=倉重篤郎

Prime Minister Taro Aso's administration has been aptly described as the "Inchworm Cabinet" for postponing the dissolution of the Diet an inch at a time. But I would like to make two requests of our dilatory prime minister. First, I hope that he, in responding to the global financial crisis, will manifest greater political leadership by applying Japan's experience in overcoming the bursting of the financial bubble. At the same time, I urge him to not make light of the fact that two consecutive prime ministers from the Liberal Democratic Party have walked away from power, and to take rapid steps to restore legitimacy to his Cabinet by holding elections.

 「尺取り虫政局」とはうまいことを言ったものだが、衆院解散時期を少しずつ先送りする麻生太郎首相に二つ注文したい。まずは、世界金融危機対応として、バブル崩壊を克服した日本の経験を役立てるべく政治的指導力をもっと発揮してほしい。同時に、二度にわたる政権投げ出しを甘く見ず、選挙を経た政権の正統性回復を急いでほしい。

"The LDP has fulfilled its mission," say several high-ranking LDP members, some of whom have even served in the party's top three executive posts. The LDP's accomplishments were to make Japan into a member of the liberal democratic camp during the Cold War between the U.S. and Soviet Union, and into a prosperous nation focused on its economy. These goals were miraculously attained. These LDP elders now insist that the party's only remaining raison d'etre is its governing ability, which enabled it to use bureaucrats, and quasi-changes of government, to deftly hang onto power. Former LDP Secretary General Koichi Kato asserts, "For two (prime ministers) in a row we did something (walked away from power) to cast doubt on our governing ability."

 「もはや自民党は使命を終えた」。三役まで務めた複数の自民党幹部からこんな声が出始めた。自民党の功績は、米ソ冷戦下で自由主義陣営の一員を選択し、経済重視路線で豊かな日本をつくり上げたこと。それは見事達成された。残された唯一の存在理由は、官僚を使いこなし疑似政権交代により権力を上手に維持する統治能力にあった、という。元幹事長、加藤紘一氏によると「にもかかわらず、この統治能力に疑念を抱かせること(政権投げ出し)を二度続けてやってしまった」。

By rights, the LDP should have at that time given up power and received its baptism in the general election. The basic playbook remains the same even now. However, the global financial crisis that has emanated from the U.S. has changed the political environment. The Dow Jones average plunged below 10,000 in the U.S., and the Nikkei fell below 10,000 yen on Thursday, and Asian and European markets have fallen like dominoes, driven downward by a negative globalism. Underlying economies have also begun to suffer, and the cutback in consumption by Americans has led to steep declines in exports and production of Japanese cars, South Korean personal computers, and Chinese textiles.

 本来はその時点で下野して総選挙の洗礼を受けるべきだった。今もその基本構図は変わらない。ただし、ここに新たな環境変化が加わった。米国発の世界金融危機だ。平均株価は米で1万ドル割れ、日本で1万円を切り、アジア、欧州でも下げ、ドミノ式、負のグローバリズムに陥った。実体経済も傷み出した。米国民の消費控えは日本車、韓国パソコン、中国繊維の輸出・生産量を急落させている。

This is a time for politics, even if Prime Minister Aso will not be the one to step to the fore. Aside from the political drama over dissolution, one could say that something has arisen that requires the administration of the moment to take emergency action, exercising its crisis management obligations. To borrow Kato's turn of phrase, "this will be a supplementary examination of the Cabinet's governing ability." To respond to the vicious cycle in the markets, a nation must implement rapid and decisive public interventions. The passage of the supplementary budget aimed at the domestic economy is within sight. But what is essential is the adoption of resolute and radical measures to respond to the ailing U.S. economy, which is the epicenter of the crisis.

 麻生首相ならずとも、ここは政治の出番である。解散政局とは別に政治の危機管理として、時の政権が緊急になすべきことが生じた、といえる。加藤氏流に言えば「統治能力に対する追試」である。市場の悪循環に対し、各国が政府レベルで迅速、かつ決然たる公的介入を実施することが求められる。国内経済向けに補正予算は成立のめどが立った。肝心なのは危機の震源地である米国経済の病巣に対し、果断で抜本的な対策を講じることである。

What needs to be recalled is the experience of Japan, which went through the bursting of the bubble in the 1990s, the lost decade, and the recovery of its financial system from 2003. How did Japan get through plummeting stock prices and real estate prices, which led to asset deflation on the scale of several hundred trillion yen? The numbers make you want to cry. In order to rescue the broken financial system, Japan adopted a low interest rate policy that, according to Bank of Japan estimates transferred 304 trillion yen in interest income away from households over 14 years, and ultimately funneled 13 trillion yen in taxes (public funds) directly into the financial industry, with 20 major banks being consolidated into three large banking groups to halt the negative chain reaction.

 思い出してほしいのは、1990年代のバブル崩壊と失われた10年、そして、03年以降の金融システムの復活、という日本の体験だ。株価、地価の暴落による数百兆円単位の資産デフレを日本はどう乗り切ってきたか。涙ぐましい数字が残っている。機能不全になっていた金融システム救済のため、低金利政策により14年間で304兆円(日銀試算)の利子所得を家計から移転、最後は税金(公的資金)を13兆円直接投入し20行近くあった主要銀行を3大グループなどに再編、ようやく負の連鎖を止めた。

The Japanese people, who had boogied with the bubble, learned a hard lesson -- that the tab for the bubble would be paid with their blood, sweat, and tears. What is happening in the U.S. today closely resembles what transpired in Japan. The starting point is the same -- the shattering of the myth that the price of real estate, which had soared, would never fall. The U.S. passed a financial stabilization bill the other day, but is still, as the Nihon Keizai Shimbun newspaper pointed out in its Oct. 5 morning edition, "not even halfway through the crisis." While deciding on the method and timing of the ultimate trump card -- using public funds to infuse capital into the banks -- is difficult, one could even say that the fate of the global economy rests on the certainty and speed of such measures.

 バブルのツケは、それに踊った当該国民の血のにじむような努力と負担でしか償われない、ということを日本人は思い知らされた。今米国内で起きていることは日本のこの経過に酷似している。下がるはずがないという不動産の右肩上がり神話が崩れた、という原点が同じだからだ。ただ米国ではこれからが本番で、先日上下両院で成立した金融安定化法も「日本と比べればまだ3合目」(日本経済新聞5日朝刊)に過ぎない。最終手段である公的資金による資本注入の手法、時期が難題だが、その確実性と速度が世界経済の運命を背負っている、といってもいい。

( 週末開かれる先進7カ国財務相・中央銀行総裁会議(G7)で、日本は米に対し公的資金投入を要請する段取りのようだが、それだけでは物足りない。首相自らが世界の首脳に働きかけ、ブッシュ米大統領にひざ詰め談判でもする覚悟で説得すべきではなかろうか。日本しか経験していないこと、しかも、対応が遅れるほど世界経済が壊されていく。日本の出方がこんな国際貢献につながる舞台はめったにない。 no English equivalent part

I recall President Bush's fondness for citing the U.S. occupation of Japan as a success story in order to legitimate the Iraq War. His argument was that Iraq, like postwar Japan, would under U.S. occupation become a Western-style democracy. However, this cheap historical analogy ignores the special characteristics of Japan's Imperial system, and I felt at the time that then Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi had abdicated his responsibility as the leader of a U.S. ally when he failed to point out the president's misunderstanding.

 イラク戦争を正当化する際に、ブッシュ大統領が好んで対日占領を成功体験として引用したことを思い出す。イラクも戦後日本のように米による占領統治で西欧型の民主主義国家になる、という論法だった。しかし、これは天皇制という日本の特殊性を無視した安直な歴史類推に過ぎず、当時の小泉純一郎首相が大統領の認識の誤りを指摘できなかったことに、同盟国としての責務放棄ではないか、と感じたことがあった。

How to handle the Japan-U.S. relationship will be one of the major issues to be contested in the coming election. While the Japan-U.S. alliance should be considered a given, Japan must not simply follow the lead of the U.S., for it does seem that the time has arrived for the leaders of both countries to say what must be said, as the U.S. does make mistakes.

 日米関係をどう扱うか、も今度の選挙の主要な争点である。日米基軸は当然ながら、米の方針に追随するだけでなく、米国も間違えることがあることを前提に首脳同士で言うべきことは言う、という時代になってきた、と実感する。

So let me return to the issue of governing ability. The current financial measures are merely temporizing attempts at crisis management, but a genuine manifestation of governing ability is only possible after the administration is bestowed legitimacy. The prime minister surely would not object to the assertion that the only way that this will happen is by dissolving the Diet and having the popular will render judgment via elections. I hope that he bears in mind the fact that if he needlessly extends the Diet, he will diminish Japanese politics. ("As I See It," by Atsuro Kurashige, Deputy General Manager of the Editorial Division of the Mainichi Shimbun)

 さて、ここで統治能力論に戻る。今回の金融対応はあくまでも一時的な危機管理であって、本格的な統治能力の発揮は、政権の正統性を付与されて初めて可能になる。その唯一の道が解散・総選挙により民意の審判を受けることであることに首相も異論はあるまい。いたずらな引き延ばしは日本政治を劣化させることを肝に銘じてほしい。(東京編集局)

毎日新聞 2008109日 005

| | コメント (0)

G7迅速な行動計画

(Oct. 12, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

G-7 action plan must be carried out swiftly

G7 「行動計画」を迅速に実行せよ(1012日付・読売社説)

After their meeting held in Washington, Group of Seven finance ministers and central bank governors expressed determination to mobilize all possible policy measures to overcome the global financial crisis.

It is important for them to formulate concrete measures to tackle the crisis in the world's financial system that was triggered by the U.S. subprime problem and implement them as soon as possible.

 ワシントンで開かれた先進7か国財務相・中央銀行総裁会議(G7)は、米国発の金融危機を克服するため、政策を総動員する決意を示したといえよう。危機対策を具体化し、速やかに実行することが重要だ。

The G-7 financial chiefs decided on a five-point action plan, including boosting financial institutions' capital through injections of public funds.

 G7は、公的資金を投入して金融機関の資本を増強するなど、5項目の「行動計画」を決めた。

The action plan was a departure from conventional joint statements in that it focused on measures to combat the financial crisis that the G-7 will undertake as matters of urgency. It was unusual for the G-7 to take such a step.

 従来の共同声明の形ではなく、優先的に取り組む危機対策に絞ってまとめた異例のものだ。

The action plan indicates the rich nations' recognition of the severity of the present circumstances, pointing out that "the current situation calls for urgent and exceptional action."

 行動計画は、現状について、「緊急で例外的な行動を必要とする」との厳しい認識を示した。

The financial crisis spilled over from the United States into the rest of the world, pushing stock markets into free fall. Under the current situation, in which the world is on the brink of a depression, it was necessary for the G-7 to send to the world a strong message in an attempt to prevent the crisis from deteriorating.

 金融危機が拡大し、世界同時株安に歯止めがかからない。恐慌寸前ともいえる状況の下、G7が強いメッセージを発信し、危機の打開を狙ったのは当然だろう。

===

Use of public funds crucial

Especially notable in the action plan is that it clearly stipulates that the G-7 will "ensure that our banks and other major financial intermediaries, as needed, can raise capital from public as well as private sources."

 行動計画で特に注目したいのは、「必要に応じ、公的資金と民間資金で金融機関の資本を増強する」と明記した点だ。

The use of public funds not only for purchasing bad assets of financial institutions, but also for recapitalizing them is considered crucial for overcoming the crisis.

 金融機関が抱える不良資産の買い取りだけでなく、資本増強に公的資金を使うことは、危機乗り切りのポイントとされる。

Immediately before the G-7 meeting, U.S. President George W. Bush announced that the U.S. government may inject public funds into financial institutions to recapitalize them based on the recently established Emergency Economic Stabilization Act.

 ブッシュ米大統領はG7直前、金融安定化法に基づき、金融機関の資本増強のために公的資金を投入できると表明した。世界が待ち望んだ決断といえよう。

The world had been waiting for this pledge.

In the wake of the U.S. decision, the G-7 confirmed its commitment to inject public funds into financial institutions.

 G7は、米国の方針を受けて、公的資金の速やかな投入を確認したといえる。

U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said at a press conference after the G-7 meeting that the U.S. government will purchase nonvoting preferred stocks of financial institutions with public funds.

 ポールソン米財務長官はG7後の記者会見で、議決権のない金融機関の優先株を公的資金で購入する考えを示した。

However, there are still many unclear points in the Treasury Department plan, such as how much stock it will purchase and when it will do so, as well as which financial institutions it will target. The U.S. government should work on compiling necessary measures and carry them out as soon as possible.

 だが、買い取りの規模や時期、対象とする金融機関など不明な点は多い。米国政府は早急に具体案を詰め、実施を急ぐべきだ。

In Europe, meanwhile, it is reported that Germany will follow Britain's cue and inject public funds into its banks.

 危機が飛び火した欧州では、英国に続いて、ドイツでも銀行への公的資金投入論が浮上した。

Japan, too, should enable the government to inject public funds into regional financial institutions suffering a management crisis, by resurrecting the Financial Function Strengthening Law, which expired in March.

 日本も、期限切れした金融機能強化法を復活させ、地域金融機関が経営危機に陥った場合に、公的資金を投入できるようにしなければならない。

===

Markets final arbiters of plan

The action plan says the G-7 will "take decisive action...to support systemically important financial institutions and prevent their failure." It also pledges support for financial institutions having difficulty in raising capital in the market in addition to utilization of fiscal and financial policies designed to tackle economic slowdowns.

 行動計画は「重要な金融機関の破綻(はたん)を回避する」と強調した。市場で資金調達が困難な金融機関の資金繰りを支援することや、景気減速に対応した財政・金融政策の活用も盛り込んだ。

But the situation remains on a knife edge as we do not know whether the action plan will work effectively to prevent a financial meltdown. This is partly because some view the action plan as lacking in concrete details.

 ただ、こうした行動計画によって、金融危機に歯止めがかかるかどうかは予断を許さない。行動計画は、具体的な内容に乏しいとの見方もくすぶっているからだ。

Markets around the world will pass judgment on the G-7 action plan when they open Monday.

 まず、週明けの市場が、「G7行動計画」への評価を示すことになるだろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 12, 2008)

200810120148  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月11日 (土)

給油法案駆け込み審議

2008/10/11 --The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 10(IHT/Asahi: October 11,2008)

EDITORIAL: MSDF's refueling mission

給油法案―駆け込み審議の異様さ

With a Lower House election looming, the calculated maneuverings so common in politics have increased in scale. However, the ruling coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito and opposition Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan) were far too opportunistic in the way they dealt with the bill to revise the anti-terrorism special measures law.

 政治に駆け引きや打算はつきものだ。総選挙が近いとなればなおさらだろう。だが、それにしてもあまりにご都合主義に過ぎないか。 


The bill will extend the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling activities in the Indian Ocean for another year.

 インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油支援活動を1年間延長する特措法改正案をめぐる自民、公明の与党と民主党の対応のことである。 

We are particularly appalled at Minshuto's about-face. In last year's Diet sessions, the largest opposition party strongly opposed the extension of the MSDF's mission, saying it violates the Constitution. It demanded thorough deliberations, which were carried over to the following year.

Although Minshuto also opposes the bill this time around, the party proposed that a vote be taken after only two days of deliberations in the Lower House.

 驚かされるのは民主党の豹変(ひょうへん)ぶりだ。昨年の国会では給油支援は憲法違反と猛反対し、徹底審議を要求して越年決着となった。なのに今回、反対するのは同じだが、衆院でわずか2日の審議で採決しようと提案したのだ。 

Minshuto is also ready to agree to an early vote in the Upper House. Thus, the bill is set to pass the Lower House but is expected to be rejected in the opposition-controlled Upper House.

However, the ruling parties will pass the bill by reapproving it in the Lower House, where they hold an overwhelming majority. The bill will likely become law by the end of the month.

 民主党は参院でも早期の採決に応じる構えだ。これにより法案は衆院で可決、参院では野党の反対多数で否決されるが、与党は衆院で再可決し、今月中にも成立する可能性が強まった。 

Minshuto is apparently determined to stop Prime Minister Taro Aso and the LDP from using discussions on the bill as an excuse to delay the dissolution of the Lower House for a snap election. Even so, Minshuto's tactic of trying to hastily handle the bill is questionable.

 法案審議を口実に、麻生首相や自民党が解散・総選挙を先延ばしするのは許さない。そんな狙いなのだろう。だが、だからといって駆け込みで法案を処理しようというのはどうだろう。 

Last year, Minshuto submitted an anti-terrorism bill centering on civilian aid in Afghanistan as an alternative to the MSDF's refueling activities. Why doesn't the party press the point again in the Diet to win public support?

 民主党は昨年、給油支援への対案として、アフガニスタンでの民生支援を軸とするテロ根絶法案を国会に出した。なぜ、これを国会の場で主張し、国民の理解を求めようとしないのか。

Critics argue that as the security situation in Afghanistan worsens, civilian aid advocated by Minshuto would be difficult and its proposal would be tantamount to doing nothing. Some Minshuto lawmakers also say the refueling activities are more realistic.

 アフガンの治安が悪化するなか、民主党が言う民生支援の実現は難しく、結局は何もしないのと同じという批判がある。給油支援の方が現実的との声は党内でも聞かれる。 

Some people even suspect that Minshuto is trying to quickly end deliberations on the pretext of demanding an early Lower House dissolution because it lacks the confidence to squarely push for its alternative plan.

 つまりは、対案を堂々と論じる自信がないから、早期解散を求めるためという口実のもとで早々に審議を閉じてしまおうというのではないのか。そう勘ぐる見方さえある。 

The ruling parties are no better. Aso persisted on deliberating the bill because he wanted to use it to attack Minshuto in the election campaign with the question: "Is Minshuto pushing for a Japan that does nothing in the war on terror?"

 与党もほめられたものではない。首相がこの法案の審議入りにこだわったのは、総選挙で「テロとの戦いで何もしない日本でいいのか」と民主党を攻撃する布石でもあった。

New Komeito, which was reluctant to put the bill to a vote for a second time in the Lower House, also changed its attitude. Observers suspect the change is based on the party's desire for an early dissolution.

公明党は衆院再議決に否定的だったのに、態度を一変させた。公明党の求める早期解散の実現にはその方が得策という思惑があるからと見られている。 

Although it has been seven years since the collapse of the Taliban regime, Afghanistan remains in turmoil. Moreover, political instability has spread to neighboring Pakistan, which possesses nuclear weapons.

 タリバーン政権の崩壊から7年がたつのに、アフガンはおろか、核兵器を持つ隣国パキスタンの政情まで混迷してきた。

How can we change this situation and get the "war on terror" back on a desirable track? What should Japan do? These are the points that need to be discussed.

どうすればこうした状況を変え、「テロとの戦い」を好ましい軌道に戻せるのか。そのために日本は何をすべきなのか。本来ならこうしたことこそ論議すべきなのだ。 

While the refueling mission is a form of contribution that Japan can make under the Constitution, debate should not be narrowed to its propriety alone. It is shameful to use the issue as a bargaining chip over the timing of a Lower House dissolution.

 給油支援は日本が憲法の下でできる貢献のひとつではあるが、その是非だけに論議を矮小化(わいしょうか)させてはならない。まして解散の時期をめぐる駆け引きの材料にするようでは恥ずかしい。 

The ruling and opposition camps should put their cases before voters in the election campaign. Debate should be advanced under a new administration to seek an agreement. There is still time before the anti-terrorism law expires in January.

 与野党は総選挙でそれぞれの主張を掲げて戦うべきだ。そのうえで新政権の下で議論を深め、合意を見いだせばいい。来年1月の期限切れまで時間はまだある。

| | コメント (0)

今も続くアイヌ差別

(Mainichi Japan) October 10, 2008

Continuing discrimination against the Ainu: a call for a government policy of coexistence

記者の目:今も続くアイヌ差別 共生目指す政策を=金子淳


National government policy for the Ainu people, who have been subject to oppression and discrimination since the Meiji Era, is now reaching a turning point. In June, the government announced a Chief Cabinet Secretary statement that declared the Ainu to be "recognized as an indigenous people."

 明治以降、迫害と差別を受けてきたアイヌ民族に対する国の政策が転換期を迎えている。政府は6月、アイヌを「先住民族と認識する」との官房長官談話を発表。

A government panel of experts headed by Koji Sato, professor emeritus at Kyoto University, was formed in July to examine Ainu policy. This marks the first time since the 1997 Law for the Promotion of Ainu Culture (the "New Ainu Law") that there has been work on a genuine review of Ainu policy.

7月には「アイヌ政策のあり方に関する有識者懇談会」(座長、佐藤幸治・京都大名誉教授)を設け、97年制定のアイヌ文化振興法(アイヌ新法)以来となるアイヌ政策の本格的な見直しに着手した。

These developments closely follow the adoption of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples by the United Nations in September of last year. In an international environment where Japan's awareness of history and perspective on human rights have come into question, it is my hope that the government of Japan will enter into a serious dialogue with the Ainu people and adopt a policy for indigenous peoples that it can proudly present on the world stage.

昨年9月には国連で「先住民族の権利宣言」が採択されたばかり。国際的に日本の歴史認識や人権感覚が問われる中、国はアイヌ民族の声に真摯(しんし)に向き合い、世界に誇れる先住民族政策を取ってほしい。

Many Ainu live in the Hidaka area, located in southern Hokkaido where I am assigned. According to a 2006 survey carried out by the Hokkaido Prefectural Government, there are 23,782 Ainu in Hokkaido, about 30 percent of whom live in Hidaka. When interacting with the Ainu I am painfully aware of the undeniable fact that discrimination against Ainu continues to this day.

 私が担当する北海道南部の日高地方には多くのアイヌ民族が暮らしている。北海道庁の06年調査では道内に2万3782人おり、その約3割が日高在住だ。彼らと触れ合う中で痛感するのは、差別が今も続いているという厳然たる事実だ。

A young Ainu girl, currently in junior high school, was forced by her elementary school classmates to read the definition of "Ainu" from the dictionary in class. These classmates handled her pens and notebooks as if they were holding something disgusting. She said that this bullying started when a classmate heard their parent say, "Ainu are dirty." Likewise, a man in his 70s recently revealed that he heard a friend talking about him behind his back, saying, "What do you expect from an Ainu?" When discrimination was mentioned in my conversations with Ainu people there were some people who suddenly grew quiet, while others spoke of their experiences with tears in their eyes.

 中学に通う女の子は小学生の時、教室でクラスメートから辞書の「アイヌ」の項目を無理やり見せられ、ペンやノートを汚いものをつまむような手つきで持たれたりした。同級生の一人が親から「アイヌは汚い」と聞かされたのが、いじめのきっかけだったという。70代の男性は最近、友人が陰で自分のことを「あいつはアイヌだから」と話すのを聞いたと明かした。差別の話になると、急に口数が少なくなる人もいれば、自らの体験を涙を浮かべて語る人もいた。

Discrimination like this is serious because it is directly linked to disparities in the Ainu's quality of life. According to the Hokkaido Prefectural Government, 3.8 percent of Ainu receive welfare, a figure that is 1.6 times that of the general population. Furthermore, the percentage of Ainu that pursue university education has stagnated at 17.4 percent, less than half the percentage of the general population (all figures are from 2006). These numbers indicate that discrimination in education, work, and marriage results in increased hardships in life, providing glimpses of a "downward spiral" where subsequent generations are unable to extract themselves from poverty.

 深刻なのは、こうした差別が生活格差に直結している点だ。道庁によると、アイヌ民族の生活保護受給率は3.8%で、アイヌ民族以外の1.6倍。大学進学率に至っては半分以下の17.4%にとどまっている(いずれも06年)。この数字からは、教育や就職、結婚などで受けた差別が結果として生活苦につながり、次の世代も貧困から抜け出せないという“負のスパイラル”が見え隠れする。

Japan's former policy for Ainu was carried out under the guise of developing Hokkaido. The national government assumed ownership of Ainu land and the Ainu lost the right to fish and hunt, their traditional means of living. Ainu culture was rejected and policies were advanced to assimilate the Ainu and make them "Japanese." The Hokkaido Former Aborigine Protection Law enacted in 1899 epitomized these measures.

 かつて国のアイヌ民族政策は北海道開発の名の下に行われてきた。彼らの土地は国有化され、伝統的な生活の手立てである漁業や狩猟の権利は奪われた。アイヌ文化は否定され、「日本人」との同化政策が進められた。その象徴が1899(明治32)年施行の北海道旧土人保護法だ。

The diligent efforts of Shigeru Kayano (1926-2006), the first Ainu to become a member of the Japanese Diet, caused this law to be repealed in 1997 after a century of being in effect. However, the New Ainu Law, established in its place, avoided recognizing the Ainu as an indigenous people and was limited to the "promotion of culture." Although there has been some progress in increasing understanding of the Ainu culture, according to Shiro Kayano, son of Shigeru Kayano and director of the Nibutani Ainu Museum, the 1997 law "did not directly contribute to an improvement in living conditions."

97年、アイヌ民族初の国会議員、萱野(かやの)茂さん(故人)らの尽力によって1世紀ぶりに廃止されたが、代わりにできたアイヌ新法は先住民族の認定を避け、内容は「文化振興」に限定された。アイヌ文化の理解促進はある程度進んだものの、萱野さんの次男志朗さん(50)=萱野茂二風谷(にぶたに)アイヌ資料館館長=は「生活の向上には直接、結びつかなかった」と言う。

The fact that many Ainu still live in poverty is a result of Japan's discriminatory policies, a fundamentally different situation from the modern problem of economic gaps. The Hokkaido Prefectural Government has established its own system of scholarships for Ainu, but this is nothing more than "a local area doing something that should be handled by the national government," says Shiro Kayano. It is fair to say that the national government's stance to this point has been to regard the pains of the Ainu people as a "local issue."

 アイヌ民族の多くが今も貧窮している背景には国の差別的な政策があり、現在の格差社会問題とは事情が異なる。道庁は独自の奨学金制度などを設けているが、「本来は国がやるべきことを地元がやっている」(志朗さん)に過ぎない。アイヌ民族の苦しみを「地方の問題」として片づけてきたのが、今までの国の姿勢だったと言える。

The panel of experts will release its report next summer. The national government is planning to use this report to examine new support policies. From Hokkaido, the panel includes Gov. Harumi Takahashi and Tadashi Kato, head director of the Ainu Association of Hokkaido. At the second meeting of the panel on Sept. 17, Kato highlighted realistic demands for living support, such as "improved education." It is possible that future deliberations will turn to the topic of indigenous rights, such as reparations or the return of land and resources. There may be times when the national government cannot easily concede to these requests. However, the dialogue between the national government and the Ainu must start with the government reflecting on its past policies and listening to the opinions of the Ainu people.

 有識者懇は来夏にも報告書を出し、国はそれを基に新たな支援策を検討する予定だ。有識者懇のメンバーには地元から高橋はるみ北海道知事やアイヌ民族でつくる北海道ウタリ協会の加藤忠理事長(69)が選ばれ、加藤理事長は9月17日の第2回会合で「教育の充実」など生活支援に向けた現実的な要求を掲げた。今後は土地や資源の返還・補償といった先住権の中身が議題に上る可能性があり、国としても簡単に妥協できない場面が出てくるかもしれない。しかし国はまず過去の政策を反省し、アイヌ民族の主張に耳を傾けることから始めるべきだろう。

In July, I reported on the Indigenous Peoples Summit in Ainu Mosir 2008 that was held at the same time as the G8 Summit in Toyako, Hokkaido. Twenty-two indigenous peoples, including the Ainu, from 11 countries and regions attended the summit, where there was discussion on the recovery of rights and on environmental preservation. Representatives of the various peoples, all with histories of being subject to persecution, delivered statements on their values, saying, "Indigenous peoples value the lands of their ancestors and have coexisted with nature." Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, Chair of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and herself a member of an indigenous people from the Philippines, declared that "protecting the rights of indigenous peoples is connected with preservation of the global environment." There are many things that we should learn from indigenous peoples.

 私は7月、北海道洞爺湖サミットに伴って開催された「先住民族サミット アイヌモシリ2008」を取材した。11カ国・地域からアイヌ民族を含む22民族が集まり、権利回復や環境保護について意見交換した。いずれも迫害の歴史を持つ各代表者は「先住民族は先祖伝来の土地を大切にし、自然と共生してきた」と自分たちの価値観をアピールし、フィリピンの先住民族で国連先住民族問題常設フォーラム議長のビクトリア・タウリ・コープス氏は「先住民族の権利を守ることは、地球環境を守ることにもつながる」と主張した。私たちは彼らから学ぶべきものが多い。

Protecting the rights of indigenous peoples is an international trend. I would like to see the government of Japan clearly indicate a position of coexistence with the Ainu people. I believe that this will lead to diversity and tolerance in Japan.

 先住民族の権利保護は国際的な流れだ。国はアイヌの人々との共生に取り組む姿勢を鮮明にしてほしい。それが、この国の多様性と寛容さにつながると信じている。(北海道報道部苫小牧)

("As I See It," by Jun Kaneko, Hokkaido District Office, Tomakomai Bureau)

毎日新聞 20081010日 003

| | コメント (0)

金融危機日本へ

(Oct. 11, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

Expedite efforts to rebuild safety net

金融危機波及 安全網の立て直しを急げ(1011日付・読売社説)

The financial crisis engulfing the United States and European nations has finally spilled over into this nation.

 欧米で火勢を強めている金融危機が、とうとう日本に飛び火した。

Yamato Life Insurance Co., a midsize life insurer, went belly-up Friday, while the Nikkei Stock Average, which had just dropped below the 10,000 mark, nosedived to below 9,000.

 中堅生命保険会社の大和(やまと)生命保険が10日、経営破綻(はたん)に追い込まれ、東京市場では1万円の大台を割ったばかりの平均株価が、一気に9000円を割り込んだ。

The situation surrounding the Japanese economy has suddenly grown tense due to the first bankruptcy of a Japanese life insurance company in seven years and the stock market free fall. To prevent an open seam in the Japanese financial system from developing into a major rupture, it is essential for the government to implement additional economic stimulus measures and expedite work to build a safety net to support the financial system.

 7年ぶりの生保破綻と株価急落で、日本経済の緊迫感は一気に高まった。日本の金融システムのほころびを大きな裂け目に広げないため、追加的な景気対策と金融システムを支える「安全網」の整備を急がねばならない。

To minimize adverse effects from the financial crisis on the nation's economy, efforts must be made to grasp what the recent seemingly bewildering spate of developments means, and concrete steps must be taken calmly to deal with the situation.

 事態を必要以上に悪化させないためには、正確に現状を認識し、浮足立たないことも大切だ。

Yamato Life collapsed due to its aggressive asset-management strategy, geared to seek high returns. But many of Japan's life insurance companies and banks learned bitter lessons from the bubble economy of the late 1980s and early '90s and have since made solid investments.

 大和生命は、高収益を狙った強気の資産運用が命取りとなったが、生保や銀行の多くは、バブルの教訓から運用は手堅い。

The wounds that the Japanese economy has suffered are superficial in comparison with those inflicted on the United States and European nations. Japan is by no means facing a serious crisis.

 日本の金融システムが受けている傷は欧米より浅く、重大な危機に瀕(ひん)しているわけではない。

===

Wrong time to drop guard

It is true, however, that Japan's economy has entered a cautious phase. Beefing up the nation's crisis preparedness again is essential because the guard raised against a possible financial meltdown during a financial sector-triggered recession several years ago has been lifted, and crisis preparedness has returned to a normal level.

 ただし、「警戒モード」に入ったことは確かだ。金融不況時の厳戒態勢から平常レベルに戻った危機への備えを、もう一度固め直す必要はあろう。

The use of taxpayers' money by the Life Insurance Policyholders Protection Corporation of Japan, which helps holders of life insurance policies sold by bankrupt companies to protect their assets, will be terminated at the end of March. The Financial Function Early Strengthening Law, which enables the injection of public funds into small and midsize financial institutions, expired at the end of March this year.

 破綻した生保の加入者の財産を守る「生命保険契約者保護機構」への公的資金活用は、2009年3月末で期限が切れる。今年3月末には、中小金融機関に公的資金を注入して支える金融機能強化法が打ち切られた。

Their terminations were decided after it was judged that they were no longer necessary because fears over the nation's financial system had subsided.

 どちらも、金融システム不安が沈静化して、必要性が薄れたとの判断からだ。

But the situation has changed, as evidenced by the collapse of Yamato Life, which came on the heels of the virtual nationalization of the biggest U.S. insurance company, AIG, and the deteriorated financial health of regional banks in Japan. Given the situation, scaling back the safety net is not appropriate and should be reconsidered.

 だが、米保険最大手の実質国有化に続いて国内生保が倒産し、地方銀行などの財務も悪化した。状況が変化した以上、安全網の縮小は適切でない。再考すべきだ。

Urgent steps must be taken to deal with ominous signs in the real economy as well. The appreciation of the yen has pushed exports downward, slashing corporate profits. Plummeting stock prices have reduced financial assets held by individuals, thereby damping consumption. Due to the cooled real estate market, New City Residence Investment Corp., a real estate investment trust, went bankrupt Thursday, becoming the first such company listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange to go bust.

 実体経済への手当ても急がれる。円高で輸出が低迷し、企業の収益は急激に悪化した。株安で個人の金融資産が目減りして消費は冷え込んでいる。不動産市況の悪化で、東京証券取引所上場の不動産投資信託が初めて破綻した。

===

U.S. key to overcoming crisis

Following drops in demand overseas due to the slowing global economy, the Japanese economy has been hit by declines in domestic demand in the fields of capital investment, consumption and housing.

 海外経済の減速による外需の落ち込みに続き、設備投資、消費、住宅の内需も総崩れだ。

Tax incentives for investment and corporate tax cuts would help the private sector regain vitality. To stimulate the stock market, the preferential tax system for securities, due to expire at the end of this year, should be extended and expanded.

 民間の活力を引き出すため、投資減税や法人税率の引き下げなどが有効だろう。株式市場をてこ入れするため、今年末で期限切れとなる証券優遇税制の延長や拡充が求められる。

Of course, when it comes to dealing with this financial fiasco, the key is whether the United States--the epicenter of the financial crisis--can adequately respond to the situation.

(アメリカの出方がこれからの世界経済の行方を左右する by srachai

At Friday's meeting in Washington of Group of Seven finance ministers and central bank governors, the government should press the United States to take sweeping measures, including the injection of taxpayers' money into financial institutions, so it can ride out this financial crisis.

 ブッシュ米大統領は10日、金融機関への公的資金注入の可能性に言及したが、内容はあいまいだ。先進7か国財務相・中央銀行総裁会議(G7)で各国は、米国に具体策の提示を求めるべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 11, 2008)

200810110204  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月10日 (金)

世界の株安

2008/10/10 --The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 9(IHT/Asahi: October 10,2008)

EDITORIAL: Crash in stock markets

世界の株安―資本注入へと踏み出せ


A tidal wave of panic selling is depressing stock markets all over the world. The benchmark stock indexes in both the Japanese and the U.S. markets fell to levels well below the 10,000-mark, while markets in Europe and elsewhere in Asia also nosedived.

 株安の津波が世界の市場を襲っている。日米の平均株価が相次ぎ「1万」の大台を大きく割り込み、欧州やアジアでも大幅に下落した。 

Late last week, the U.S. Congress finally enacted a financial bailout plan that allows the government to buy distressed assets from financial institutions. But markets reacted skeptically, questioning the effectiveness of the rescue package and urging the government to inject taxpayer money directly into troubled financial institutions. Europe also is struggling to come up with effective responses to the crisis that is now threatening the region's banking system.

 先週末に米国で、金融機関の不良資産を政府が買い取る法律がやっと成立した。だが、市場はその効果を疑問視し、金融機関に公的資本を直接注入することを求めている。危機が飛び火した欧州でも、効果的な対策を打ち出せずに、もたついている。 

The global stock market debacle indicates extremely heightened levels of anxiety about the financial system among investors and market players across the world. Furthermore, market participants predict a further global economic downturn in days to come. In a concerted move to stop the spreading downward spiral, six Western central banks, including the U.S. Federal Reserve Board and the European Central Bank, lowered their benchmark policy rates Wednesday.

 株安は金融不安が極度に高まったことを示している。それに加えて、世界的に景気が冷え込むのを先取りしている点で根が深い。危機の連鎖を防ぐため、欧米の6中央銀行はきのう協調して政策金利を引き下げた。 

As a result of the combined recession Japan experienced in the 1990s following the collapse of stock and real estate market bubbles, banks saddled with massive bad loans tightened up their screening for businesses and even called in loans, thereby making the recession worse and causing their own bad assets to increase further. This vicious cycle, in which a financial crisis weakened domestic demand and thereby worsened the crisis itself, pushed the nation deeper into recession.

 90年代の日本がバブル崩壊による不況に苦しんだとき、「複合不況」とよばれた。不良債権で窮地に立った銀行が企業に対して貸し渋り・貸しはがしに走ったことで不況が進み、それがまた不良債権を増やす。金融危機と需要減退が複合し、そうした悪循環が不況を深めていった。 

The synchronized stock market tumbles ominously suggest the crisis that originated in the United States and Europe is developing into a global combined recession.

 この複合不況が、これから欧米を震源に世界的な規模で押し寄せてくる。株安はその予兆ではなかろうか。 

In the United States, the financial storm that started on Wall Street has begun to drag down the real economy. U.S. vehicle sales in September plunged 26 percent from a year earlier.

Lenders are now beginning to shut off lines of new credit to consumers as well as to businesses. Many American consumers have been sustaining their brisk shopping pace with borrowed money. The current credit crunch could lead to a sharp drop in consumer spending in the country.

 米国では、ウォール街で発生した金融危機の嵐が実体経済へ及んできた。9月の自動車販売は前年より26%も落ち込んだ。貸し渋りは、企業だけでなく個人向けへも広がってきた。米国民は借金漬けで消費をふくらませてきた面が強いだけに、消費が大幅に落ち込むことになるかもしれない。 

Europe is also suffering a vicious cycle involving a downturn in the real estate market, a credit contraction and an economic decline.

 欧州も不動産市況の悪化、金融収縮と景気後退の悪循環が鮮明だ。 

The ripple effects of the crisis will also deliver a severe blow to Japan, which has pulled itself out of the prolonged post-bubble economic malaise on the back of strong exports of automobiles and electronic appliances. While overseas demand for Japanese exports is weakening, there is no quick way to stoke demand at home.

 自動車や電器の輸出に頼ってバブル不況から脱出してきた日本も苦しくなる。内需を拡大といっても、特効薬がすぐにあるわけではない。 

Japan first responded to the combined recession with massive rounds of simple public spending to boost demand, delaying cash injections into undercapitalized banks. The upshot was the now-famous "lost decade," in which a credit contraction and a deflationary downturn reinforced each other in a vicious cycle.

 日本は複合不況の時代に、財政出動による単純な需要拡大策を優先し、金融機関への資本注入を後回しにした。その結果、金融収縮と不況との悪循環が拡大して10年を失った。 

At a news conference on Tuesday, Bank of Japan Governor Masaaki Shirakawa said the lesson of Japan's bitter experience is that there can be no economic recovery under such circumstances without fixing the problem of undercapitalized banks.

 日本銀行の白川方明総裁はおとといの記者会見で、当時の教訓として「銀行の資本不足の解決なくして、景気回復はない」と振り返った。 

The U.S. and European authorities must protect their banking systems and end the credit crunch to prevent a toxic combination of a contraction in lending and an economic downturn. That requires bold moves to infuse the banking system with public funds.

 危機に直面している欧米諸国が、まず金融システムを守り、貸し渋りを防いで、金融収縮と景気後退の複合を食い止める。そのために公的資金の投入へ大胆に踏み出す――。これがいま最優先で取り組むべきことだ。 

The British government on Wednesday announced a rescue package for its embattled banks that will inject up to 50 billion pounds (some 9 trillion yen) of taxpayer funds into troubled lenders. Other countries are also considering similar measures. As a country that underwent a severe home-grown banking crisis triggered by the burst of its asset-inflated bubble, Japan should strongly urge other countries facing a similar crisis to take these steps.

 英政府はきのう、約9兆円の公的資本を銀行へ注入する救済策を発表した。各国とも資本注入策を模索しているようだ。日本はバブル処理に苦闘した経験者として、そうした対策を強力に働きかけることが大切だ。 

The nation's top financial policymakers will have an opportunity to do so when they attend a meeting of the finance ministers and central bankers of the Group of Seven industrialized nations this weekend.

 今週末には7カ国財務相・中央銀行総裁会議(G7)が開かれる。まずはこの会議がその場になるだろう。

| | コメント (0)

世界同時利下げ

(Oct. 10, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

Market, players want U.S. to do more

世界同時利下げ 市場が催促する米国追加策(1010日付・読売社説)

The market is demanding strong measures that are sufficient to avert financial meltdown. The U.S. government should decide as soon as possible to inject public funds into financial institutions as capital reinforcement.

 金融危機を阻止する強力な対策を市場は求めている。米国政府は、金融機関の資本増強に公的資金を投入する決断を早急に下すべきだろう。

Six North American and European central banks, including the U.S. Federal Reserve Board and the European Central Bank, have cut their key policy rates by half a point. Other central banks, including the People's Bank of China, followed suit with their own cuts. It is unprecedented for so many central banks around the world to implement coordinated cuts in key interest rates.

 米連邦準備制度理事会(FRB)と欧州中央銀行(ECB)など米欧の六つの中央銀行が、政策金利を0・5%幅で利下げした。中国なども追随した。世界的な同時利下げは異例だ。

The Bank of Japan also needs to mobilize all possible policy measures while staying coordinated with other countries' central banks.

 日銀も各国と連携しつつ、政策を総動員する必要がある。

The current financial crisis, which started in the United States and spilled over to Europe, and the global run on stock markets does not seem close to ending. There is concern that the situation even will lead to a global recession. This worry must have prompted the central banks to make the emergency rate cuts.

 米国発の金融危機が欧州に飛び火し、連鎖株安が止まらない。世界不況も懸念される。危機感が緊急利下げを促したといえよう。

Meanwhile, the British government has decided to inject up to 50 billion pounds, about 9 trillion yen, into eight major banks as a measure to salvage them through recapitalization.

 一方、英国政府は、最大500億ポンド(約9兆円)の公的資金を大手8銀行に投入し、資本増強する銀行救済策も決めた。

===

Effects only short-term

However, the market reacted coolly to such emergency moves. Stock prices on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday did not cease their falls, while the Tokyo Stock Exchange also saw prices plunge Thursday.

 しかし、市場の反応は冷ややかだった。8日のニューヨーク株式市場の株価は下げ止まらず、9日の東京市場も値下がりした。米欧の電撃的な協調利下げの効果は、限定的だった。

Thus, it seems the effects of the coordinated cuts were limited. This is probably because market players saw the cuts as not enough to stabilize markets or to shore up the economy. There are no clues yet in sight on how to fix the problem of bad mortgage-related assets of U.S. financial institutions, which is a key problem that needs to be solved very soon.

 市場の安定や、景気を下支えする効果が不十分と受け止められたのだろう。肝心の米国の金融機関の不良資産問題が解決するめども立たない。先行きへの懸念が背景にある。

U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson held a press conference Wednesday during trading hours for the New York Stock Exchange. This underscores that U.S. financial authorities are jittery about the current situation.

 ポールソン米財務長官が、8日のニューヨーク株式市場の取引時間中に記者会見したのは、米当局の焦りもうかがわせる。

Saying, "We will use all of the tools...including strengthening the capitalization of financial institutions of every size," Paulson suggested the possibility that the U.S. government will directly inject public funds, based on the recently established Emergency Economic Stabilization Act, into financial institutions that are undercapitalized.

 長官は、「資本増強を含むあらゆる手段を講じる」と述べ、先日成立した金融安定化法に基づき、資本不足に陥った金融機関に、公的資金を直接投入する可能性を示唆した。

One of the main pillars of the law is the purchase by the U.S. government of bad assets held by financial institutions. However, it does not clearly stipulate that the government will use public funds for beefing up their capital.

 金融機関の不良資産買い取りを柱にした金融安定化法には、金融機関の資本増強に公的資金を使う内容が明記されていない。

It seems that Paulson would like to stretch the interpretation of powers given to the Treasury Department and move to inject public funds.

 長官は、財務省に与えられた権限を拡大解釈し、資本注入も実施したい考えとみられる。

===

Time to use public funds

However, an announcement of the government's determination alone is not enough to calm the market or assuage market players' fears. Stock prices plunged immediately after Paulson's news conference. Due to fears of possible resistance to Paulson's plan from the U.S. Congress, which is in its preelection recess, and the U.S. public, the market must be viewing skeptically the question of whether the government can really fix this problem.

 ただ、決意表明だけでは、市場は安心しない。長官の会見直後に株価は急落した。選挙前で休会中の米議会や、米国民が反発する恐れもあり、実現できるかどうか、懐疑的にみているのだろう。

Learning from Japan's experience, however, it is necessary for the United States to use public funds to recapitalize financial institutions in addition to the purchase of bad assets. Now is the time for the United States to emulate Britain, which decided to inject public funds into financial institutions.

 しかし、日本の教訓を踏まえれば、不良資産の買い取りとともに、金融機関の資本増強にも公的資金を使うことが必要だ。今こそ米国は、公的資金を投入する英国を見習う時だ。

A meeting of the Group of Seven finance ministers and central bank governors is scheduled for Friday in Washington. The G-7 financial chiefs have to further reinforce their policy coordination and at the same time prompt the United States to take a further measure that proves effective.

 10日にワシントンで、先進7か国財務相・中央銀行総裁会議(G7)が開かれる。政策協調を一段と強化し、米国に踏み込んだ政策を促さなければならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 10, 2008)

200810100126  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

米国発株価の暴落

アメリカ発株価暴落日本へも波及
株価の異常な暴落、日本の株式はどうなるのでしょうか?
この英文はきわめて平易なのであえて翻訳はしませんでした。
金曜日の午前中の株価ですが、日経平均で8200円、これじゃ誰も投資する気にはなりません。しかしながら、この株価の暴落は千載一遇のチャンスかも知れませんね。
欲しかったあの株、この株が超安値で購入できるまたと無い機会ということもできます。
srachai from khonkaen, thailand

(Mainichi Japan) October 10, 2008
Nikkei index dives more than 10 percent in early trade

TOKYO (AP) -- Japanese shares nose-dived more than 10 percent in early trade Friday as jittery investors dumped shares following massive overnight losses on Wall Street.

Japan's Nikkei index plummeted 972.58 points, or 10.62 percent, to 8,184.91 as of 9:40 a.m.

The massive sell-off in Tokyo came after the Dow Jones industrial average Thursday dropped a staggering 679 points, or 7.3 percent, to close below the 9,000-line for the first time in five years.

"Selling is unstoppable in New York and Tokyo. Investors were gripped by fears," said Yutaka Miura, senior strategist at Shinko Securities Co. Ltd. "They were worried about a severe slump in the global economy."

The Dow's 2,271-point tumble over the last seven sessions is its steepest seven-day point drop ever. Its seven-day percentage decline of 20.9 percent is the largest since the seven-day plunge ending Oct. 26, 1987, when the Dow lost 23.8 percent. That sell-off included Black Monday, the Oct. 19, 1987 market crash that saw the Dow fall nearly 23 percent in a single day.

The Dow has lost 5,585 points, or 39.4 percent, since closing at 14,164.53 on Oct. 9, 2007. It's the worst run for the Dow since the nearly two-year bear market that ended in December 1974 when the Dow lost 45 percent.

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月 9日 (木)

ノーベル賞受賞

(Mainichi Japan) October 8, 2008

Nobel Prize gives cause for pride and cause to reassess value of basic science

社説:ノーベル賞 基礎研究が勇気づけられた

The winning of the Nobel Prize in physics by three Japanese researchers came as a delightful surprise. The announcement was made amid growing expectations for Japanese researchers to win the Nobel Prize, as six years have passed since Masatoshi Koshiba and Koichi Tanaka won it in 2002.

 02年の小柴昌俊、田中耕一両氏のダブル受賞から6年。そろそろ日本人が受賞してもおかしくないとの期待が高まっていたが、3人の共同受賞は予想外で、うれしい驚きだ。

Moreover, the three were cited for their research on elementary particle physics, which has been regarded a specialty of Japanese science since Dr. Hideki Yukawa won the Nobel Prize in 1949 for his research on elementary particles.

Their winning of the prize not only reconfirms the fundamental strength of Japan's basic science but also fires the scientific imagination in children, as the research has provided clues to the formation of the universe.

 しかも、対象は49年に湯川秀樹博士がノーベル賞を受賞して以来、日本の「お家芸」とみなされてきた素粒子物理学である。日本の基礎科学の底力が改めて確認されただけではない。宇宙の成り立ちに深くかかわる成果であり、子供たちの科学への夢をはぐくむ効果もある。3人の快挙をたたえ、拍手を送りたい。

Dr. Toshihide Maskawa and Dr. Makoto Kobayashi won the prize for their research on a physical phenomenon called CP violation. It answers the question as to why, when the world is made up of matter, antimatter cannot be found.

 益川敏英、小林誠両博士の受賞の対象となった理論は、「CP対称性の破れ」と呼ばれる物理現象に関係している。この「破れ」は、私たちの世界が「物質」だけで成り立っていて、性質が反対の「反物質」が見あたらないのはなぜか、という疑問に答える考えだ。

The two scientists advocated the theory that six types of elementary particles called quarks are necessary to explain the phenomenon. Quarks were subsequently discovered one after another, with the existence of the sixth -- known as top quark -- confirmed in 1995.

Moreover, B Factory, a large-scale accelerator in Japan, has proven their theory through its observations, which certainly helped them win the prize.

 両博士は、この現象を説明するには素粒子のクォークが6種類必要だ、と提唱した。その後、クォークは次々と発見され、95年には六つ目のトップクォークが確認された。さらに、日本の大型加速器「Bファクトリー」は2人の理論の正しさを観測で証明した。これが2人の受賞を後押ししたことは間違いない。

Dr. Yoichiro Nambu established the theory of spontaneous broken symmetry in the field of elementary particles. Specifically, in answer to the fundamental question as to why substances that exist in the world have mass, he advocated the theory that there is a phenomenon in which symmetry in nature is broken. His theory is the basis for the standard theory of elementary particles today. It led to unifying three of nature's four forces in a single theory.

 南部陽一郎博士は、「自発的対称性の破れ」という概念を素粒子の分野で確立した。この世界の物質には質量があるが、それはいったいなぜか。根源的な問いの背景に、自然界の対称性が破れるという現象があると提唱した。この理論は、現在の素粒子の標準理論の基盤となっており、自然界に働く四つの力のうち三つの力を統一する理論の基礎につながった。

It should be noted that Dr. Maskawa and Dr. Kobayashi are domestically trained scientists while Dr. Nambu is an example of brain drain -- the loss of Japanese intellectuals to foreign countries. Maskawa and Kobayashi never studied abroad and conducted their research solely in Japan. Nambu, who moved to the United States in the 1950s and obtained U.S. nationality, studied the basics in Japan. The achievements of all three scientists are evidence of the creativity of Japanese people.

 受賞が決まった3人のうち益川、小林の両博士が「純国産科学者」、南部博士が「頭脳流出派」である点にも注目したい。益川、小林両博士は留学経験がなく、国内で独自に研究を続けてきた。一方、50年代に渡米して以来、米国で活動し、米国籍を得ている南部博士も学問の基礎を学んだのは日本だ。いずれのケースも日本人の独創性を示す証拠と考えられる。

The Nobel Prize that was once regarded as being beyond anyone's reach has become familiar to ordinary people over the past decade. It also underscores the importance of promoting basic science without worrying about short-term achievements. It has also raised questions about the Japanese government's tendency of placing too much emphasis on profitability in its science and technology policy.

At the core of its efforts to vitalize the economy, the government is calling for efficiency of research activities at universities and application of the results in business. However, any epoch-making discovery in science cannot be made in an environment in which the top priority is placed on profitability.

 「高根の花」と思われてきたノーベル賞はこの10年で身近なものとなった。同時に目先の成果にとらわれない基礎研究の重要性もクローズアップされた。そうした中で気になるのは、日本の科学技術政策が経済偏重に向かっていると思われることだ。政府は科学技術を経済活性化の主要な柱と考え、大学の研究にも効率や応用を求めている。しかし、第一級の発見は経済効果を第一に考える環境からは生まれないはずだ。

The three researchers won the Nobel Prize for their achievements in the 1960s and 1970s. We should take this opportunity to consider whether the current environment for scientific research is suitable for nurturing researchers who can win the Nobel Prize.

 今回の受賞は60~70年代の業績に与えられたものだ。現在の研究環境はノーベル賞に結びつく人材を育てるにふさわしいか。今回の受賞をきっかけに改めて考えたい。

毎日新聞 2008108日 015

| | コメント (0)

米輸入義務量の削減

2008/10/8 --The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 7(IHT/Asahi: October 8,2008)

EDITORIAL: Rice import obligation

The wrongful distribution of pesticide-tainted or moldy rice for human consumption has become a topic of Diet debate.

コメ輸入義務―農業強化の構想を競え 事故米の不正転用問題が国会の論戦でも取り上げられている。 

The blame for this scandal lies with businesses that knowingly sold inedible rice to food manufacturers. However, we must also conclude that the nation's agricultural administrators were guilty of perpetuating a flawed distribution structure that enabled unscrupulous businesses to abuse the system. An examination of the current rice import situation supports our claim.

 その責任は、事故米と承知で食用に販売した業者にある。そのうえで、業者につけ込む余地を与え、不正を見逃した農政にも、構造的な問題があったと考えざるを得ない。輸入米の現状を調べるとそれが浮かんでくる。 

To protect the domestic rice industry, Japan slaps an exorbitant import tariff of nearly 800 percent on foreign rice. In exchange for having this policy recognized internationally, Japan agreed to import a certain amount of rice every year. This is called the "minimum access" requirement for rice imports.

 日本は国産米を保護するため、コメの輸入に800%近い高関税をかけている。これを国際的に認めてもらう条件として、毎年一定量を輸入する義務を負った。これが「ミニマムアクセス(最低輸入義務量)」である。 

The current minimum access volume is set at 770,000 tons, equivalent to roughly 9 percent of annual domestic output. Since this arrangement came into effect in fiscal 1995, Japan has imported a cumulative total of about 9 million tons of rice.

 現在の輸入義務量は、国内のコメ生産量の9%程度にあたる年間77万トン。制度が始まった95年度以来、累計で約900万トンを輸入した。 

According to a Cabinet decision, the government made sure that rice imports would not bring down the market price of domestic rice or necessitate further rice production cuts. For this reason, sales of imported rice as staple food are kept to a minimum, and most of the imported grain is used for making miso fermented soybean paste, senbei crackers and other rice products. It is also sent to the world's poorest nations in aid.

 政府は、コメの輸入が国内の相場を押し下げ、あるいは生産調整(減反)を増やすことのないようにする、と閣議で決めた。だから、できるだけ主食用には売らず、みそやせんべいの原料用として売ったり、最貧国への食糧援助に使ったりしている。 

However, only 400,000 to 500,000 tons are needed per year for overseas food aid or as materials for rice products, leaving the government with a huge surplus stock of 1.29 million tons.

With the costs of storage in warehouses exceeding 10 billion yen a year, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has been desperate to reduce the inventory. We believe this has resulted in the farm ministry's misguided zeal to unload the rice on any willing buyer and to allow slack inspections.

 とはいえ、原料用、援助用の需要は年間40万~50万トンくらいしかない。売れずに在庫が129万トンもたまった。倉庫での保管費用が毎年100億円以上もかかるため、農林水産省は在庫減らしを進めてきた。それが不正業者への安易な販売と、甘い検査につながったのではないか。 

At the Doha Round of world trade negotiations that collapsed in July over farm trade issues, the Japanese government was even prepared to raise the minimum access quota to avert a huge cut in its rice import tariff. But even if the government tries to find more uses for imported rice as a material for rice food products, there simply are none.

 この夏に大詰めで決裂した世界的な貿易交渉(ドーハ・ラウンド)でも政府は、コメ関税の大幅引き下げを避けるためなら、さらに輸入義務量を増やすのもやむなし、との方針で臨んできた。しかし、原料用の用途拡大に努めたとしても、輸入米をこれ以上利用できるあてはないのだ。 

As a nation that relies heavily on exports, Japan cannot survive unless it abides by international trade rules. However, the government is finding it difficult to import more rice while protecting domestic farmers.

 輸出立国の日本は、国際的な貿易ルールを守らなければ生きていけない。一方で、コメの輸入を増やすのは難しいし、国内の農業も守りたい。 

The only way to overcome this dilemma is to raise the competitiveness of domestic farming. The nation's agricultural administration has always focused on protecting rice farmers, but this policy alone will only debilitate and doom the industry.

 このジレンマを解くには、やはり農業の競争力を高める以外になかろう。農政はずっと米作の保護に重点を置いてきたが、それだけでは農業の足腰を弱めジリ貧に陥ってしまう。 

Soaring rice prices around the world have shrunk the gaps between prices at home and abroad. Global food shortages are likely to persist. Now is a perfect time to radically overhaul the nation's farm policy.

 コメの国際相場が高騰し、幸い内外価格差はずいぶん縮小している。世界的な食糧不足は今後とも続きそうだ。ここは農政を抜本的に組み直すチャンスではないだろうか。 

The world trade talks are expected to resume as early as next year. Japan should switch to a policy of lowering the rice import tariff as much as possible to reduce the minimum access volume while implementing initiatives to strengthen domestic agriculture, enabling rice farmers to lower production costs. We also recommend a more generous income compensation system to help farmers whose mainstay is rice.

 早ければ来年にも再開される貿易交渉では、コメの関税をできるだけ引き下げて輸入義務量を抑える方針に転換する。同時に、それに見合って生産コストが下がるよう、強い農業へ向けた政策を集中させる。米作を主業とする農家へは所得補償制度を拡充して支援する。そんな戦略である。 

With a Lower House election looming, we hope both the ruling and opposition camps see the tainted-rice scandal as the cue to compete over how best to revive domestic farming.

 事故米問題をきっかけに、与野党は総選挙へ向けて、そうした農業再生の構想を競ってほしい。

| | コメント (0)

株価急落救済対策

(Oct. 9, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

Extra measures needed to prop up economy

「補正」衆院通過 株急落の対策をためらうな(109日付・読売社説)

The great wave of the global stock market meltdown slammed into the Tokyo markets again Wednesday. The key Nikkei Stock Average plunged nearly 1,000 points, and the U.S. dollar briefly dove below 100 yen.

 世界同時株安の大波が東京市場を直撃し、株価が1000円近く急落、円相場も一時、1ドル=100円を突破した。

The Japanese economy is finding itself on increasingly shaky ground. The government should accelerate drawing up additional measures to prop up and revive the economy.

 日本経済を取り巻く状況は、深刻さを増している。政府は、景気下支えのための追加対策の策定を急ぐべきだ。

The House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a supplementary budget for fiscal 2008. The extra budget, which is worth about 1.81 trillion yen, includes an economic package that centers on the establishment of a new credit guarantee system for small and midsize companies, and a subsidy for farmers, fishermen and forestry workers whose businesses have been severely affected by high oil prices.

 今年度の補正予算案が衆院を通過した。総額1兆8080億円の予算案は、中小企業向け信用保証制度や、原油高騰に伴う農林水産業者への支援などが柱だ。

These two policies are based on comprehensive economic measures the government drew up before the U.S.-triggered financial crisis escalated into turmoil on a global scale.

 いずれも、米国発の金融危機が本格化する前に策定された政府の総合経済対策に基づいている。

The situation now, however, is alarming. Although the United States passed a 700 billion dollars bailout package for the troubled financial industry, stocks there are in free fall, causing markets around the world to slide.

 だが、現状は容易ならざる事態だ。米国では金融安定化法が成立したものの、株価が下げ止まらず、世界の市場に波及している。

On Wednesday, the 225-issue Nikkei index dropped well below the 10,000 mark to 9,203.32, marking its lowest close since June 30, 2003.

 8日の東京株式市場は1万円の大台を大きく割り込み、5年3か月ぶりの安値で取引を終えた。

===

Bankruptcies on rise

More than 1,000 firms went bankrupt in September, according to data released Wednesday by a private credit research agency. This was the fourth straight month in which at least 1,000 companies went belly-up. Total debts left by these failed companies were the second-largest in postwar Japan. The deterioration in the real economy is pushing stock prices even lower.

 この日発表された9月の企業倒産件数は、4か月連続で1000件を超え、負債総額が戦後2番目の大きさだった。実体経済の悪化が株価を押し下げた。

Given these circumstances, the supplementary budget, of course, must be passed through the Diet quickly. However, the sheer size of the problem demands that a second move--and possibly further measures--also should be implemented.

 こうした現状を見れば、補正予算案の早期成立を図らねばならないのは当然だが、さらに二の矢、三の矢が欠かせまい。

In a rare move, the Democratic Party of Japan approved the supplementary budget in a vote at the lower house's Budget Committee. DPJ Secretary General Yukio Hatoyama had previously criticized the budget, saying, "Such a budget will never help the economy recover."

 補正予算案の採決では、民主党が賛成に回った。異例のことだ。鳩山幹事長は当初、「こんな予算では決して景気回復にはならない」と批判していた。

The DPJ apparently made a political judgment in which the main opposition believes it will be better served by cooperating with the ruling parties in passing the supplementary budget in the hope of setting the stage for an early dissolution of the lower house. The DPJ's change of tune apparently was aimed at forestalling public criticism that would have erupted had the party opposed the measures intended to boost the economy.

 衆院を早期に解散させるには、補正予算案成立に協力した方がいいとの政局的判断があるようだ。「景気対策に反対した」という批判をかわす狙いもあろう。

===

Antiterrorism bill on agenda

The DPJ also will likely agree to vote on a bill to revise the new Antiterrorism Law for extending the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean.

 民主党は、インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動を継続するための新テロ対策特別措置法改正案の早期採決にも応じる方針だ。

The bill is expected to pass the lower house, which is controlled by the ruling parties, and then be rejected in the opposition-controlled House of Councillors. DPJ officials reportedly said the party will not try to drag out deliberations on the bill if the ruling parties put it to a second vote that can be enacted with their two-thirds majority. This also is part of the DPJ's strategy aimed at bringing about an early dissolution of the lower house.

 改正案は衆院で可決後、参院で否決される。与党が衆院で3分の2以上の多数で再可決、成立させるなら、民主党は審議の引き延ばしはしないという。やはり早期解散を目指す戦略の一環だろう。

Continuing the MSDF's refueling mission is the absolute minimum responsibility Japan must fulfill to show the international community that the nation will not shirk from the fight against terrorism. The DPJ's decision not to thwart the enactment of the bill serves the national interest.

 海自の給油活動の継続は、日本が「テロとの戦い」から離脱しないための最低限の国際責務だ。民主党が改正案成立を阻止しないことは、日本の国益にかなう。

However, the public struggles to understand why the DPJ is putting priority on early lower house dissolution and subsequent general election. Some cynics might describe it as self-serving.

 ただ、早期解散・総選挙のためならば、という民主党の政局優先の姿勢は、国民に分かりづらく、「ご都合主義」とも映る。

The lower house's Special Committee on Antiterrorism is scheduled to discuss the bill and the DPJ's alternative bill. The ruling and opposition parties should faithfully discuss the nation's commitment in the fight against terrorism before the public.

 衆院テロ防止特別委員会では、新テロ特措法改正案と同時に、民主党の対案も審議される予定だ。与野党は、国民の前で、日本の「テロとの戦い」のあり方をきちんと論じるべきだろう。


(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 9, 2008)

20081090155  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月 8日 (水)

東証2日連続で1万円割れ

(Mainichi Japan) October 8, 2008
Tokyo stock prices fall below 10,000 yen for second day
東証:2日連続で1万円割れ 一時469円安まで下落

Tokyo stock prices fell below 10,000 yen Wednesday morning for the second consecutive day following a sharp plunge in New York stock prices the previous day.

The Nikkei Average of 225 selected issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE) plunged more than 450 points from Tuesday's closing index, falling below 9,700. It was the second straight day that the index has fallen below the 10,000 mark.

The closing Nikkei index of Wednesday's morning session came to 9,695.12, down 460.78 points from Tuesday's closing index.

The TSE's key index only fell as far as 9,916 on Tuesday.

 8日の東京株式市場は、前日の米国株価が急落したことなどを受け、ほぼ全面安の展開となった。日経平均株価は5営業日続落し、一時、前日終値比469円04銭安の9686円86銭まで値を下げた。取引時間中としては、2日連続で1万円を割り込み、03年11月20日以来約4年10カ月半ぶりの安値水準となった。午前の終値は同460円78銭安の9695円12銭。

 TOPIX(東証株価指数)も5営業日続落し同42.21ポイント安の935.40。東証1部の午前の出来高は11億2800万株。

 前日のニューヨーク市場が大幅下落した流れを引き継いだ。金融危機の拡大に加え、世界的な景気悪化や、企業業績の悪化懸念が強まっており、海運、鉄鋼、自動車、電機、証券など幅広い銘柄が売られた。

 円高傾向が続き、輸出依存度が高い日本企業の業績下方修正が相次ぐとみられていることも悪材料になっている。

 このため、市場では「止まらない株安や景気悪化で消費意欲も減退しており、日経平均が9500円台まで下落することも視野に入ってきた」(大手証券)との見方が広がっている。

 一方、アジアの主要株式市場でも大幅下落が続いた。香港株式市場のハンセン指数が5%近く下落したほか、中国の上海総合指数も一時、3.4%下落した。シンガポール、台湾、韓国市場でも前日終値比3%安い水準で取引が続くなど、世界同時株安の連鎖が止まらない状況だ。【野原大輔】

毎日新聞 2008年10月8日 9時20分(最終更新 10月8日 12時56分)

| | コメント (0)

地球温暖化と総選挙

2008/10/7 --The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 6(IHT/Asahi: October 7,2008)

EDITORIAL: Global warming

地球温暖化と総選挙―「環境」だって票になる 


With all the talk about a looming Lower House election, one crucial issue seems to have eluded Diet debate: How to stem global warming.

政権選択の総選挙が近づいているのに、国会では地球温暖化防止の政策論争がいっこうに盛り上がらない。

Lawmakers are strikingly silent on this issue. It's as if they concluded that sufficient policy debate was given to climate change during this year's Group of Eight summit held at Lake Toyako, Hokkaido.

まるで、「洞爺湖サミットで温暖化論議は一段落」といった静けさである。

We are alarmed at this situation, given that our collective response to rising temperatures will determine the course of economic and social development in this century.

地球温暖化への対応は、21世紀の経済と社会の発展のあり方を決める重要な選択であるにもかかわらずだ。 

In elections in other major industrial countries, it is the norm for parties and candidates, irrespective of their political and ideological standing, to present proposals to stop harmful climate change.

 先進諸国の選挙では、党派を問わず温暖化防止対策を示すのが当たり前になっている。

In the United States, where the administration of President George W. Bush has been lukewarm at best about tackling the challenge of climate change, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama and his Republican opponent John McCain have both promised to set specific numerical targets for reducing the country's emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.

ブッシュ政権下で温暖化防止に後ろ向きだった米国では、大統領選を戦うオバマ氏(民主党)とマケイン氏(共和党)が、それぞれ二酸化炭素(CO2)など温室効果ガス削減の数値目標を公約に掲げている。 

In Australia's general election held in November last year, one of the factors behind the victory of the Labor Party, which wrested power from the conservative coalition, was a campaign strategy that put strong emphasis on the party's commitment to fighting global warming.

 昨年11月のオーストラリアの総選挙で保守連合から政権を奪った労働党の勝因の一つは、温暖化防止を前面に掲げたことだった。 

The leaders of these countries are now looking ahead to the post-Kyoto Protocol era. The first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, a 1997 treaty which requires industrial countries to cut their greenhouse gas emissions below 1990 levels, began this year and runs through 2012.

 こうした国々の指導者の視線の先には「ポスト京都」がある。先進国に温室効果ガス削減を義務づけた京都議定書の2012年までの第1約束期間が今年、始まった。


Countries are now negotiating to thrash out a post-Kyoto framework for anti-warming efforts beyond the first commitment period, hoping to reach a binding agreement when negotiators meet in Copenhagen at the end of next year under United Nations auspices.

「ポスト京都」とは13年以降の新たな枠組みのことで、来年末にデンマークである交渉会議で基本的枠組みの合意をめざしている。 

Looking beyond Kyoto

 ■ポスト京都を見据えて 


During the Toyako summit, the eight major powers agreed that all countries should share "the goal of achieving at least a 50-percent reduction in global emissions by 2050."

 洞爺湖サミットで主要8カ国は「50年に温室効果ガスの排出量半減という目標をすべての国々が共有する」ことで一致した。

How should this long-term goal be treated under the post-Kyoto framework? What kind of medium-term goals to be achieved by around 2020-2030 should be set?

この長期目標を「ポスト京都」でどう取り扱うのか。20~30年ごろの中期的な目標をどう設定するのか。

Negotiations on the new treaty involving fast-growing emerging economies like China and India and developing countries as well as industrialized nations will intensify during the year-long period to the end of 2009.

残り1年余りの間、中国やインドなどの新興経済国や開発途上国を巻き込んだ駆け引きが本格化する。 

The new post-Kyoto treaty will bind the participating countries to specific obligations for decades to come. That's why policy debate is raging in the United States and Europe over visions of a low-carbon society and ways to secure sustainable economic growth.

 「ポスト京都」の新たな枠組みはこの先、何十年も参加国を縛る。だからこそ、低炭素社会のビジョンや経済発展のあり方をめぐって、欧米で政策論争が盛んなのだ。 

It is by no means easy to build national consensus on this issue.

 国内の意見をまとめるのは容易ではない。

Proposed measures to reduce greenhouse gases, such as emissions trading and an environmental tax, would bring about various social and economic changes.

排出量取引や環境税などは社会や経済の変化をもたらす。

The business community and citizens alike will have to accept a painful increase in the burden they shoulder. It is the job of political leaders to define a direction for the nation's climate policy amid conflicting opinions and interests.

産業界や国民には負担増の「痛み」を引き受けてもらわねばならない。さまざまな意見や利害が交錯するなかで、方向を定めるのは政治の仕事である。 

In June, then Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda announced a comprehensive climate proposal known as the Fukuda vision. Its goal was to slash Japan's greenhouse gas emissions by 60 to 80 percent from current levels over the long term.

 福田前首相が6月に出した温暖化対策の包括提案(福田ビジョン)は「温室効果ガス削減の長期目標は現状比60~80%削減」と数字を示し、国別の削減目標設定も打ち出した。

Fukuda also called for country-specific mandatory caps on emissions. But his proposal did not refer to any medium-term target nor make clear how Japan should move toward a low-carbon society.

だが、中期目標には触れておらず、低炭素社会への道筋ははっきりしない。 

Fukuda's successor, Prime Minister Taro Aso, made some ambitious-sounding promises in his policy speech at the outset of the ongoing Diet session.

He pledged to make sure that Japan will become "a low-carbon society compatible with economic growth ahead of other countries" and "lead efforts to establish international rules as a country that is on the cutting edge of environmental protection and energy conservation."

But Aso failed to offer a clear scenario about how to build on the Fukuda vision. Supported by no specific numerical targets, his climate policy promises are not very convincing.

 麻生首相は所信表明演説で「成長と両立する低炭素社会を世界に先駆けて実現する」「世界で先頭をゆく環境・省エネ国家として国際的なルールづくりを主導していく」と述べたが、福田ビジョンをどう発展させるのかのシナリオは見えない。具体的な数字の約束もいっさいなく、説得力が乏しい。

Job-rich technology development

 ■雇用も生む技術開発 

Meanwhile, the main opposition Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan) has submitted its own climate bill to the Diet. The party's climate policy platform announced in September included two medium- to long-term goals: a 25-percent cut in heat-trapping gas emissions from 1990 levels by 2020 and a 60-percent reduction before 2050.

 一方、民主党は地球温暖化対策基本法案を国会に提出済みで、9月にまとめた党環境政策大綱で「20年までに90年比25%削減」「50年より早い段階で60%削減」という中長期の目標を掲げた。

The Minshuto platform also called for increasing the share of renewable energies like solar and wind power in the nation's overall energy supply to 10 percent by 2020 from around 2 percent right now.

It also advocated the creation of a domestic emissions trading system and a new tax to promote efforts to stop the process that is making the planet warmer.

太陽光や風力などの再生可能エネルギーの割合を現在の2%程度から20年までに10%に増やすことをめざすほか、国内排出量取引や地球温暖化対策税も明記している。 

But the opposition party's platform did not specify the rate of the new green tax nor address when it should be introduced. Minshuto was also vague about the emissions trading system it envisions.

 だが、新税の税率や導入時期は示されておらず、どのような国内排出量取引制度にするかもあいまいだ。 

The question confronting policymakers is how to achieve continued economic growth and maintain people's living standards without harming the health of the planet.

 地球環境を守りつつ、経済成長や暮らしの安定をどう実現していくのか。

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party should come up with a new climate proposal including concrete targets, while Minshuto needs to develop convincing plans to deliver on its promises. Then, the two parties should start serious policy debate on this subject.

自民党は数値目標を含めた新たな提案を出し、民主党は約束を実現する具体策を示したうえで、本格的な政策論争を展開してほしい。 

The perspective that should be kept in focus in the debate is that a delay in the shift to a low-carbon society leads to losses. One aspect of the international drive to arrest the dangerous climb of the Earth's temperature is competition to develop eco-friendly technologies. Shying away from efforts to stem global warming to avoid necessary short-term costs could mean lost business opportunities.

 その際に忘れてならないのは、「低炭素社会への転換が遅れると損をする」という視点だ。温暖化防止には技術の開発競争という側面がある。目先のコストを嫌って温暖化対策から逃げているとビジネスチャンスを逃す。 

Aso has said that environmental and energy technologies have the potential to create new demand and jobs. Minshuto has promised to create jobs by promoting the development of technologies and products with a lower environmental impact. Both parties should offer concrete policy proposals focused on the positive aspect of tackling this challenge.

 「環境・エネルギー技術には新たな需要と雇用を生む力がある」(麻生首相)、「環境負荷の少ない技術や商品の開発で雇用を確保する」(民主党)といったプラス面を生かす政策を具体的に示してもらいたい。 

They should also explain clearly and candidly the "pains" that the shift to a low-carbon society would entail.

 低炭素社会への転換に伴う「痛み」の中身も率直に語ってほしい。 

Germany has obliged electric power companies to buy all the electricity generated by using alternative energies over a period of 20 years. This radical measure has contributed greatly to promoting clean energies, allowing the country to rocket ahead of Japan to world leadership in solar-power generation. The cost of purchasing electricity produced with alternative energies is shared widely by consumers through higher utility bills.

 ドイツは、再生可能エネルギーによる電気を20年にわたりすべて買い取るよう電力会社に義務づけた。それが追い風になり、太陽光発電の設備量で日本を抜いて世界一になった。買い取りに伴うコストは電気料金に上乗せされ、利用者が広く負担している。 

It will be vital to gain the public's support for measures that will entail a higher burden for programs to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

 こうしたコストの分担について国民の理解を求めなければならない。 

Painful transition

 ■「痛み」への目配りを 

In our view, it is also vital for public discussion to be held on measures to cushion the expected pain that these steps will cause.

 「痛み」に対するセーフティーネットの議論も必要だ。 

The climate bill that the U.S. Senate considered and came close to voting on this year contained provisions to provide support to the poor and offer job training for jobless workers.

These provisions were based on the assumption that policy efforts to stop global warming would raise electricity rates and cause job losses by hurting energy-intensive industries. Policy responses to the issue of global warming in Japan also need to pay such careful attention to possible side effects.

 今年、米上院で審議され、採決寸前までいった温暖化防止法案は、温暖化対策に伴って電力料金が上がったり、エネルギー多消費型産業の縮小で失業者が出たりすることを想定し、貧困層への支援や失業者の職業訓練まで考慮する内容だ。こうした目配りのきいた対策が日本でも求められる。 

The environment is not an issue that is closely linked to people's daily lives or makes a big difference at the voting booth. If politicians still believe this myth they are boxed in terribly outdated thinking.

 地球環境は日々の暮らしからは遠い問題で、票になりにくい。そんな思いに政治家がとらわれているとすれば、時代遅れもはなはだしい。 

All political leaders of today must have the ability to provide effective ideas and leadership for turning the serious threat posed by global warming into an opportunity for economic and social progress.

 気候変動というピンチを、経済や社会の発展のチャンスに変える構想力と指導力――。現代の政治家のだれもが備えているべき資質である。 

| | コメント (0)

世界同時株安

(Oct. 8, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

Enough economic talk, it's time for tough action

世界同時株安 政策協調で強力な対策を(108日付・読売社説)

Stocks around the world are going into free fall as the U.S.-triggered financial crisis goes from bad to worse. The international community should not dawdle in coordinating policies that will be highly effective, including emergency cuts in interest rates by Japanese, European and U.S. authorities.

 米国発の金融危機が拡大し、世界同時株安に歯止めがかからない。日米欧の緊急利下げを含め、強力な政策協調が今ほど求められる時はない。

New York stocks fell below 10,000 for the first time in four years Monday. Tokyo stocks briefly dipped below the 10,000 threshold for the first time in four years and 10 months Tuesday. Other Asian markets as well as European markets also have seen falls in stock prices caused by a chain reaction.

 ニューヨーク株式市場の株価は6日、4年ぶりに1万ドルの大台を割った。7日の東京市場の株価も一時、4年10か月ぶりに1万円を割り込み、アジアや欧州でも、連鎖株安が続く。

On the foreign exchange market, the yen rose as the dollar briefly hit the 100 yen level. The Japanese currency also sharply rose against the euro. Market players are jittery. It is anyone's guess when these panic-stricken falls in stock prices and turbulent fluctuations in exchange rates will end.

 これに連動し、外国為替市場では、円相場が一時、1ドル=100円台に上昇し、対ユーロでも急伸した。パニック的な株安と、為替の乱高下がいつまで続くか。市場は疑心暗鬼にかられている。

The latest confusion in financial markets was, somewhat ironically, caused by the U.S. government's bailout package that was finally signed into law Friday. Due to doubts over the effectiveness of the package, selling pressure gathered pace in stock markets.

 混乱の引き金となったのは、皮肉にも、先週末にようやく成立した米国の金融安定化法である。その実効性を疑問視し、株売りが加速した。

Concern over such factors as the financial crisis spreading into Europe and the slowdown of the U.S. economy also took the wind out of the markets' sails.

 金融危機が欧州でも拡大したことや、米国の景気後退なども懸念され、市場を冷え込ませた。

===

U.S. rescue package flawed

The bailout package allows the injection of up to 700 billion dollars in public funds to buy up bad loans held by financial institutions. The package was expected to serve as a trump card to rescue financial institutions that are in dire situations.

 金融安定化法は、最大7000億ドル(約74兆円)の公的資金を投入し、金融機関の不良資産を買い取るものだ。金融機関の窮状を救う“切り札”と期待された。

However, observers believe it will be difficult to determine at what prices bad loans are to be bought up, and it likely will take time for the package to produce tangible results. Many pundits say the U.S. government should use public funds also to beef up the capital of financial institutions. The package, however, does not include such a measure.

 しかし、買い取り価格の決定が難しく、効果が発揮されるまで時間がかかるとされる。公的資金を金融機関の資本増強にも使うべきだとの指摘が多いが、この法律には盛り込まれていない。

Even if the U.S. government is set to establish a new law to enable capital injections, it cannot take actual steps because the Congress is closed ahead of the election season. This is a serious situation.

 資本注入を可能にする新たな法律を制定しようとしても、議会は選挙前の休会中で、身動きが取れない。深刻な事態だ。

In Europe, into which the crisis has seeped, emergency lending has been offered for imperiled German lender Hypo Real Estate. The German government also announced it would guarantee all private deposits. Since a number of banks and other financial institutions have been found to be treading water, other nations also are being driven to take action to rescue them.

 危機が飛び火した欧州では、経営不安に陥った独不動産金融大手に緊急融資枠が設けられ、独政府は預金の全額保護を表明した。各国で銀行などの経営危機が相次ぎ、救済策に追われている。

===

G-7 meet in spotlight

At a summit meeting of four major European nations last weekend, however, the leaders failed to hammer out any effective measures to alleviate this difficult situation. A plan to create a rescue fund to buy up bad loans, similar to the U.S. bailout package, has been shelved.

 だが、先週末の主要4か国首脳会議では、有効策を打ち出せず、米国のように不良資産を買い取る救済基金構想は見送られた。

Observers have pointed out that systems to monitor and support financial institutions that operate globally are far from satisfactory. We think steps to rectify the situation should be taken as soon as possible.

 国境を超えて活動する金融機関に対する監視・支援体制の不備が指摘されている。早急に対応を考えねばならない。

Japan, which is increasingly seeing signs of an economic recession, has been dealt the double punch of an abrupt slowdown in the U.S. economy and the appreciation of the yen. The nation probably should start considering implementing additional measures to sustain its economy.

 景気後退色が強まってきた日本には、米国経済の急減速と、円高がダブルパンチだ。日本も、さらなる景気下支え策の検討に入るべきではないか。

A focal point for now is the meeting of finance ministers and central bank chiefs of the Group of Seven major nations that is scheduled to be held in Washington on Friday. The finance leaders need to send a strong message to avoid a crisis.

 当面の焦点は、10日にワシントンで開かれる先進7か国財務相・中央銀行総裁会議(G7)だ。危機の回避に向け、市場にメッセージを送る必要がある。

Market players are pinning their hopes on coordinated cuts in interest rates by Japanese, European and U.S. monetary authorities. Whether they will make such a decision will be closely watched.

 市場は、日米欧の協調利下げに強く期待している。その決断ができるかどうかが注目されよう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 8, 2008)

20081080152  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月 7日 (火)

米実体経済の悪化

(Mainichi Japan) October 6, 2008
U.S. should prevent real economy from worsening as bailout bill passed into law
社説:米金融法成立 実体経済の悪化、食い止めよ

U.S. politicians finally bowed to mounting calls from the public to take measures to deal with the financial crisis. The revised financial bailout bill finally became law after the original version of the bill was voted down by the House of Representatives in an unexpected move, which caused share prices to plummet sharply. The Senate approved the bill after amending it and the House passed it in a second vote, and President George W. Bush signed the bill to enact it.
 今こそ行動の時だ--。そんな呼びかけの高まりに押され、米国の政治がついに動いた。予想外の下院否決で株価が暴落し、世界を震え上がらせた金融安定化法案だったが、上院での修正案可決、下院の再採決を経て議会を通過、ブッシュ大統領が署名し、ようやく成立した。

We cannot help but feel relieved when we imagine what would have happened without this action. The U.S. administration is urged to promptly implement the law so that measures to use up to 75 trillion yen in public funds to buy nonperforming assets will be effective.
 「行動」がなかった場合の影響を想像すると、安堵(あんど)しないではいられない。最大75兆円の公的資金を活用した不良資産の買い取りが効果を上げるよう、米政権には改めて迅速な実施を求める。

There are several factors behind the House's approval of the bill, which came only several days after it was first voted down. One of them is that the Senate passed the bill after revising it to give more consideration to depositors and taxpayers. The efforts of Congress leaders and presidential candidates to persuade legislators also played a part. However, the deciding factors are confusion, such as the stock market crash, following the House's rejection of the original bill and changes in U.S. public opinion following the chaos.
 わずか数日で一転、可決となった背景には複数の要因があろう。預金者や納税者に配慮した修正案の上院可決はその一つだ。議会指導部や大統領候補者らによる懸命の説得活動も後押しした。だが決め手となったのは、下院否決後の株価暴落など市場の大波乱と、それを受けた米世論の変化ではないか。

Initially, public opinion was that the use of taxpayers' money to save Wall Street is unacceptable, but later a sense of crisis spread among Americans out of fear that their livelihoods would be in jeopardy. Following the House's rejection of the original bill, legislators who voted against it received opinions from their respective constituencies expressing grave concern over their financial situation and possible adverse effects that the disapproved bill would have on their pensions. In response, many opposing legislators changed their minds after deeming that there was no option to leave the situation untouched without taking any countermeasures.
 「国民の血税によるウォール街救済は断じて許せない」という怒り一色から、「このままでは自分の暮らしが危うくなる」という危機感の広がりへと空気が変わった。否決後、反対議員の所には、それぞれの選挙区から、資金繰りや将来の年金への影響を心配する切実な声が寄せられたという。何も手を打たず、状況を放置する選択肢はない、として態度を変えた議員が少なくなかったようだ。

However, the financial bailout law will not immediately improve the situation. The crisis is not only deepening in the financial world but also has adversely affected the real economy. Observations that the U.S. economy has entered a recession phase are predominant.
 しかし、安定化法成立をもって、状況がすぐ好転するわけではない。危機は金融の世界で深まっているだけでなく、実体経済にも波及している。米国の景気指標は、雇用や企業の景況感をはじめ軒並み急激に悪化しており、すでに景気後退局面に入ったとの見方も支配的になってきた。

A situation in which a vicious circle worsens and prolongs a serious economic slump must be avoided by all means. It is important for the United States to boldly implement additional measures, such as the infusion of public funds into financial institutions and support for the economy through fiscal and interest rate policies, if necessary.
 悪循環がどんどん進み、長期にわたって深刻な不況が続くという事態は何としても防がねばならない。必要となれば、公的資金による金融機関への資本注入や、財政、金利両面からの景気下支えなど、米国は大胆な追加策を果敢に実行することが大事だ。

Following deliberations of the law, calls are mounting for stepped up regulations on the financial industry. Distrust in the functioning of the financial market has been heightened to an unprecedented level. It is a matter of course to review the regulations on financial institutions, but the government should not take actions that lack prudence.
 法案審議を経て、金融業界などへの規制の強化を求める声が強まっている。市場の機能に対する不信感もかつてないほどの高まりを見せている。ただ、規制を見直すのは当然だとしても、冷静さを欠く対策に走ってはならない。

It would be inappropriate to simply compare the U.S. financial crisis now -- when the economy has been globalized and industry has diversified -- with the Great Depression about 80 years ago. However, it is beneficial to remember lessons learned from the Great Depression: the government made a mistake when it implemented protectionism measures such as a sharp hike in tariffs, worsening the economy.
 経済のグローバル化や産業の多様化などが進んだ今と約80年前の大恐慌時を同列に議論するのは不適切だ。しかし、広範で大幅な関税引き上げという保護主義策など当時の誤った政策対応が、不況を解消するどころかより深刻化させたという教訓を思い起こすのは、今も有益であるはずだ。

The global economy, including Japan's economy, is expected be in a more serious situation. It is more important than ever for major countries to strengthen their unity in preventing people who are already worried about the economic situation from panicking.
 日本も含め世界経済はこれからより厳しい局面に立つことになろう。不安心理の暴走を許さないためにも、主要国の結束がこれまで以上に大切になる。

毎日新聞 2008年10月5日 0時08分

| | コメント (0)

厚生年金記録改ざん

--The Asahi Shimbun, Oct. 4(IHT/Asahi: October 6,2008)
EDITORIAL: Altered pension records
2008/10/6

The health ministry has disclosed that standard monthly remuneration rates were sharply reduced on about 750,000 records in the kosei nenkin government-managed pension program for corporate employees.
年金改ざん―どこまで広がるのやら 厚生年金の記録の改ざん問題で、保険料算定のもとになる標準報酬月額を大幅に引き下げた例が75万件あることが明らかになった。

In addition, in 533,000 cases records were retroactively altered for six months or more, with the employee's monthly base income rank--one of 30 from 98,000 yen to the upper limit of 620,000--being lowered. These ranks are used to calculate premiums.
In 156,000 cases, this downgrading was made almost simultaneously with the withdrawal of the employees from the pension program.
 ほかに、半年以上さかのぼって標準報酬月額を引き下げた例が53万3千件、厚生年金からの脱退手続きと月額の引き下げをほぼ同時期にしたのが15万6千件あるという。

Previously, the ministry said it had found 69,000 pension records it suspected had been falsified. But the new revelations indicate the problem is far larger.
 改ざんが疑われるのは6万9千件とされていたが、もっと大量にあると疑わせる数字だ。

All of these cases do not necessarily involve tampering. Companies may substantially cut the salaries of employees when in financial distress. Small businesses may correct salary figures if they fail to submit government-required paperwork on time.
However, there are probably many other cases of record tampering that fit none of the three types described by the ministry.
 これらがすべて改ざんだとは言いきれない。経営難で給料を大幅に下げることもあるし、中小・零細企業などで事務が追いつかず後で訂正するケースもあるからだ。しかし逆に、これら3条件に当てはまらない改ざん例も、このほかにあるに違いない。

The government should first ferret out all records that may have been altered and reveal the whole picture to the public. Then, it should check each of the suspicious cases to determine the accuracy of the data and correct all falsified records to ensure that employees receive the benefits they have earned.
 政府はまず、改ざんされた疑いのある事例を徹底的に洗い出し、全容を公表すべきだ。そのうえで、改ざんされたものか1件ずつ確認して記録を正し、本来の額の年金を支給するよう全力をあげなければならない。

At the same time, Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Yoichi Masuzoe should take steps to make clear how these records were altered and identify those responsible.
Masuzoe has admitted it was probably an organized practice, saying, "I think there was organizational involvement (in the record tampering)."
He should launch an investigation to identify those who were responsible for the misconduct and punish then. And he must use the findings to make sure that there will be no such malfeasance at the new organization that takes over pension management operations from the Social Insurance Agency, which is to be disbanded.
 同時に舛添厚生労働相には、改ざんされた経緯とその責任を明らかにしてもらいたい。すでに舛添氏は改ざんに「組織的関与はあったと思う」と認めている。責任者を突き止め処分するとともに、こんなことが二度と起きぬよう、社会保険庁を解体した後の態勢づくりに生かさねばならない。

However, the way the ministry revealed these new numbers raises questions.
The ministry must have been aware of them when it found the 69,000 records that were likely to have been tampered with. Why didn't it disclose them until now?
 それにしても、今回の公表には疑問がわく。先に疑わしい6万9千件を抽出した時点で、今回の数字も分かっていたはずだ。それなのに、なぜいまになって明らかにしたのか。

The outlook for the dissolution of the Lower House for a snap election has changed. Until recently, new Prime Minister Taro Aso was widely expected to dissolve the chamber as early as the end of September. But it is now believed it will be delayed. The Budget Committees of both houses will soon discuss this problem and other issues.
It is hard not to suspect that the government originally intended to keep the public in the dark on these pension cases. Did this calculation change when the political situation changed, with the government believing it needed to disclose the pension scandal before the opposition grilled it on the problem at the Diet?
 9月末にもとされていた衆院の解散が少し遠のき、来週からは予算委員会でこの問題も審議される見通しになった。数字は隠しておくつもりだったが、国会で野党の追及を受けるなら、その前に出した方が得策だと考えたのか、と勘ぐりたくもなる。

As it happened, it was revealed that the Liberal Democratic Party's Diet Affairs Committee had instructed all ministries and agencies to consult the party when the opposition requested government data.
 折しも、自民党の国会対策委員会が全省庁に対し、野党から資料請求があった場合には、自民党に相談するよう求めていたことが明らかになった。

It is obvious that such an instruction makes ministries and agencies less willing to provide important information to an opposition party, especially information that may be embarrassing to the ruling camp.
 与党から「相談せよ」と言われれば、役所が資料を出し渋るようになるのは目に見えている。政権側に都合の悪い内容であれば、なおさらだ。

Opposition requests for government-held information have led to a series of revelations of outrageous negligence and misdeeds by government officials, from pension record mismanagement to misuse of money earmarked for road construction to acceptance of gifts from taxi drivers by bureaucrats while using taxi services paid for by the government.
With a Lower House election in the offing, is the LDP trying to block opposition access to information that can lead to such embarrassing revelations? If so, the party is not playing fair.
 年金記録問題に始まって、道路予算のずさんな使い方に、居酒屋タクシー……。野党の資料請求をきっかけに、政府と役人のあきれた実態が次々に暴かれてきた。自民党は総選挙を控え、そうした追及の元を絶ちたいということなのだろうか。だとすれば、なんとも姑息(こそく)ではないか。

Needless to say, information held by the government belongs to the the public. The government should provide all information requested by the Diet to ensure serious, fact-based discussions on key issues.
That's essential for finding remedies to serious problems like the pension record scandal.
 もとより、役所の持つ情報は国民全体のものだ。国会から求めがあれば公開し、それをもとに堂々と議論を戦わせてこそ、年金記録問題の解決の道筋も見えてくるのではないか。

| | コメント (0)

衆議院予算委員会

(Oct. 7, 2008)The Yomiuri Shimbun
Deepen Diet debate on policy funding
衆院予算委 財源論争をさらに深めよ(10月7日付・読売社説)

With a House of Representatives election said to be around the corner, both the ruling and opposition parties have a responsibility to clarify the political issues at stake through debate in the Diet. In doing so, the most important point is that the sources of funding for their envisaged policy measures should be made clear.
 衆院選を控えて、与野党は国会論戦を通じ、“政策争点”を明確にする責任がある。その際、最も大事なのは、財源の裏打ちだ。財源論争を一層深めなければならない。

Discussion of the fiscal 2008 supplementary budget proposed by the government started Monday at the lower house Budget Committee. At the committee, Hiroyuki Sonoda, acting chairman of the Liberal Democratic Party Policy Research Council, discussed the policy pledges of the opposition Democratic Party of Japan and the financial resources they have outlined to fund them, critically picking out what he saw as ambiguities.
 衆院予算委員会で、政府の2008年度補正予算案に対する各党の質疑が始まった。
 自民党の園田博之・政調会長代理は、民主党の政権公約と財源確保策を俎上(そじょう)に載せ、そのあいまいさを追及した。

It is unusual for a member of the ruling coalition party to argue the rights and wrongs of the opposition party's policy pledges during deliberations on the government's budget. Sonoda took this unusual step, apparently believing that the effectiveness of the policy measures proposed by the DPJ should be called into question if the leading opposition party has the potential to take office after the next lower house election.
 政府予算案の質疑で、野党の政策の是非を論じるのは異例だ。次の衆院選で政権交代があり得るとすれば、民主党の政策の実効性が問われるべきだ、という立場からだろう。

===

Where is DPJ's 20.5 trillion yen?

DPJ President Ichiro Ozawa has announced policy pledges including the provision of subsidies to guarantee a certain level of income for farming households and the creation of a system to guarantee minimum pension payments.
 民主党の小沢代表は、農家への戸別所得補償や最低保障年金の創設などの公約を掲げている。

Ozawa insists that net expenditure of the general and special accounts, which totals 212 trillion yen per year, should be drastically restructured to release 20.5 trillion yen to fund his policies.
 その財源として、国の一般・特別会計の年間純支出計212兆円を抜本的に組み替え、20・5兆円を捻出(ねんしゅつ)する、と主張している。

However, Sonoda criticized this assertion at the Budget Committee, arguing that it would be difficult to cut the net expenditure of the accounts because more than 80 percent of these funds have already been earmarked for various purposes such as the redemption of national bonds, social security payments and loans for local governments.
 これに対し、園田氏は、支出の8割以上は、国債償還や社会保障給付、地方への貸付金などに充てているため、「削減は難しい」と指摘した。

He claimed that Ozawa's policy measures were largely contradictory since the securing of the 20.5 trillion yen would require the slashing of expenditure on public works and education totaling 30 trillion yen.
 結局、公共事業や文教などに使っている30兆円の政策経費を削って20・5兆円を確保しなければならない計算となり、「大きな矛盾がある」と疑問を投げかけた。

Sonoda also criticized Ozawa's idea to tap into surplus funds held in special accounts--so-called buried treasure--to implement policy measures, saying that such surplus funds can never constitute a sustainable source of funds because they can only be spent once.
 特別会計の積立金など「埋蔵金」の活用についても、「1回使えば終わりで、恒常的財源にならない」と批判した。

===

DPJ slams wasteful spending

Following on from these comments, Akira Nagatsuma, deputy chairman of the DPJ Policy Research Committee, disagreed with Sonoda, stressing that government spending included a huge amount of tax money that was wasted by bureaucrats in such forms as subsidies with strings attached and unnecessary spending using the special account.
 これに関連し、民主党の長妻昭・政調会長代理は、政府支出には「ひも付き補助金や特別会計の無駄など官僚による膨大な税金の浪費がある」と反論した。

Nevertheless, it remains questionable whether administrative and fiscal reform alone can really generate the huge sum of 20.5 trillion yen while at the same time maintaining the functioning of national and local administrations.
 だが、国と地方の行政を機能させつつ、行財政改革で20・5兆円もの財源を本当に得られるか。

As many local governments are suffering from financial difficulties, there is also concern that the DPJ's plan to reduce additional public works directly controlled by the central government could be detrimental to the development and maintenance of infrastructure in rural areas.
 地方財政が苦しい中、国直轄の公共事業をさらに縮減するという民主党案では、地方の社会資本整備などに支障はないか。

In the face of these questions raised by the ruling coalition, the DPJ must provide more detailed explanations.
 与党が示した疑問に対し、民主党は、より具体的な説明をしなければならないだろう。

Both the ruling and opposition parties have a responsibility to clarify the source of funds that will be used to raise government funding of the basic pension to 50 percent in the next fiscal year and to support a flat-rate tax cut included in the emergency economic package.
 政府・与党も、来年度から基礎年金の国庫負担割合を2分の1に引き上げるための財源や、緊急経済対策に盛り込んだ定額減税の財源の手当てについて、明確にする責任がある。

Such problems found in the policy pledges of the ruling and opposition parties will be major issues during the campaign for the next lower house election. We would like lawmakers to deepen discussion of these problems at the Budget Committee.
 こうした与野党の政策上の問題点は、衆院選でも主要な論点になる。各党は、予算委で掘り下げた議論を展開してもらいたい。

The holding of a one-on-one debate at the committee between Prime Minister Taro Aso and the DPJ president would also be of great value.
 麻生首相と小沢代表との党首討論を行うことも有益だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 7, 2008)
(2008年10月7日02時02分  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月 6日 (月)

大阪個室ビデオ店放火

(Mainichi Japan) October 6, 2008
Police believe deadly arson attack on video shop in Osaka was not premeditated
個室ビデオ店放火:手持ちライターで喫煙後に…小川容疑者
(警察の調べでは放火は計画的犯行ではなかった by srachai)

OSAKA -- A man under arrest over an arson attack on a video-viewing establishment here that left 15 people dead used a cigarette lighter he was carrying to start the fire in a fit of rage, leading investigators to believe that his actions were not premeditated, police said.

Local police believe that the suspect, 46-year-old Kazuhiro Ogawa, who apparently had suicidal tendencies, committed the crime in a fit of anger after entering a private room.

Investigators raided Ogawa's apartment in Higashi Osaka on Sunday. No suicide note was found and only a small amount of money was left in the room.

Ogawa entered the video-viewing facility in Naniwa-ku at around 1:30 a.m. on Wednesday and used a lighter he was regularly carrying to smoke a cigarette in a private room, according to local police.

After viewing a video he rented from the establishment, he used the lighter to set fire to a bag belonging to a 46-year-old stall keeper, who visited the facility with him, investigators allege.

 大阪市浪速区の個室ビデオ店で15人が死亡、10人が負傷した放火事件で、殺人容疑などで逮捕された小川和弘容疑者(46)が放火に使ったライターは、普段から携帯しているものと分かった。

火をつけたキャリーバッグは、一緒に入店した露天商の男性(46)のもので、放火用に持ち込んだものではないと判明。大阪府警浪速署捜査本部は、日ごろの悩みや自殺願望が入室後に一気に噴き出して放火に及んだことが、遺留品からも裏付けられたとみている。

 調べなどによると、小川容疑者は1日午前1時半ごろ入店。個室内で、普段から携帯していたライターを使ってたばこを吸い、借りたDVDを1本観賞。その後、ライターで放火に及んだとみられる。

 小川容疑者は事件の数日前から、東大阪市内の自宅にも帰らず、路上で知り合った露天商と大阪・ミナミ周辺を放浪。ネットカフェなどで、寝泊まりする生活を送っていた。事件当日は、ほとんど金を持っておらず、同店には露天商に連れられ、初めて行っていた。

 露天商は似顔絵や占いを商売とし、小川容疑者がそのバッグを個室内に持ち込んでいた。小川容疑者は、まず個室の備品のティッシュペーパーに火をつけ、それを露天商の絵画用の道具や新聞などが入っていたバッグに放り込んで燃やした。バッグには、小川容疑者の衣類も入れていた。捜査本部は、これまで小川容疑者の供述により、衝動的犯行とみていたが、物証からもその見方を強めている。

 一方、捜査本部は5日、小川容疑者の東大阪市加納7の自宅マンションを家宅捜索した。遺書はなく、室内に現金はほとんどなかったという。

毎日新聞 2008年10月6日 2時30分

| | コメント (0)

留学生受け入れ増員

(Oct. 6, 2008)The Yomiuri Shimbun
Japanese schools must attract foreign talent
留学生政策 30万人受け入れへ議論深めよ(10月6日付・読売社説)

As the world's best and brightest minds become a global commodity, U.S. and European universities are vying for the top students from abroad.
 国境を越えた人材の移動が増える中で、欧米諸国の大学は、優秀な留学生の獲得競争にしのぎを削っている。

Universities in the United States are the most popular destination for elite students from China and other Asian countries. For Japanese universities to catch up with their U.S. and European counterparts, a drastic reexamination of policies on foreign students is necessary.
 とりわけ、米国の大学は、中国などアジア諸国の優秀な学生に最も人気のある留学先になっている。日本の大学が後れを取り戻すためには、留学生政策の抜本的な見直しが必要だろう。

The government has outlined measures to increase the number of students from abroad from the current 120,000 to 300,000 a year by 2020.
 政府は、大学などで学ぶ留学生を、現在の12万人から2020年をめどに30万人にまで増やすことをめざす「留学生30万人計画」の骨子を策定した。

It was the first time in 25 years for the government to spell out its policy on foreign students since it touted a plan to accept 100,000 students from abroad in 1983.
 政府が留学生受け入れ政策を打ち出すのは、1983年に「留学生受け入れ10万人計画」を掲げて以来、25年ぶりのことだ。

If undergraduate and graduate schools are increasingly globalized and, consequently, research at those institutions is further invigorated, it will help advance the nation's science and technology as well as make Japanese industry more competitive in the global marketplace.
 大学や大学院の国際化が進み、研究が活性化すれば、科学技術の振興や産業の国際競争力向上にも役立つ。

Nurturing talented human resources who can become a bridge between Japan and foreign countries is also important to strengthen Japan's influence in the international community.
 日本と諸外国との懸け橋となる優秀な人材を育てることは、国際社会で日本が発言力を増す上でも重要なことだ。

===

Nation lags West

Among Western countries, the United States accommodates about 580,000 students from overseas, while France and Germany, both non-English speaking nations, accept about 250,000. The figures far surpass Japan's 120,000 foreign students.
 欧米諸国の受け入れ状況は、米国が58万人、非英語圏の仏独でも25万人前後で、日本の12万人を大きく上回っている。

The number of students accepted from abroad can be judged as a barometer of the attractiveness of universities of each country.
 受け入れ人数は、大学の魅力を示すバロメーターだろう。

Under the measures to increase the number of students from overseas to 300,000, the government will select 30 universities as the hub of globalization of the nation's higher education system. These schools will award diplomas for courses with classes basically taught only in English and heighten educational standards by hiring more non-Japanese faculty.
 留学生30万人計画には、国際化の拠点として30の大学を選定し、原則英語のみで学位が取得できるコースを設けたり、外国人教員の採用を増やしたりして教育水準を高めることなどを盛り込んだ。

In the 2007 Times Higher Education-Quacquarelli Symonds (THE-QS) World University Rankings, Tokyo University stood at 17th and Kyoto University ranked 25th. The ranking assesses universities under criteria including the ratio of foreigners among the students and faculty. We believe Japanese universities as a whole will be assessed higher in the ranking if they welcome more non-Japanese students under the government's measures.
 英紙ザ・タイムズが昨年公表した世界大学ランキングでは、東大が17位、京大が25位だった。教員や学生のうち、外国人が占める比率も評価の指標に入っている。改善が進めば、日本の大学の評価も全体に向上するはずだ。

===

Remove recruiting hurdles

One of the barriers to attracting students from overseas is the difficulties they experience in finding employment after graduation in Japan, as few Japanese companies recruit foreigners.
 外国人を採用する日本企業が少ないため、卒業後の就職が難しいことも“障壁”の一つだ。

Last year, the government began an educational program under the government-initiated Career Development Program for Foreign Students from Asia.
 政府は昨年から、アジア人財資金構想に基づく教育プログラムをスタートさせた。

Under the program, universities and participating companies offer specialized educational classes that meet corporate needs, including business Japanese classes and practical training at companies, and students who take the classes are generally hired by the participating companies.
 大学と協力企業で「ビジネス日本語」や「企業実習」など企業側のニーズに合った専門教育プログラムを用意し、これを受講した留学生は、企業が原則採用するという仕組みだ。

We believe further strengthening such industry-university cooperation also is necessary.
 こうした産学連携を一層強化していくことも必要だろう。

Another important part of the government's measures include promotion of Japanese language education overseas and centralization of international contacts for those who wish to study in Japan.
 海外での日本語教育の推進や、日本留学希望者のための海外の窓口一元化なども、30万人計画の重要な柱だ。

Deeper discussions should be held immediately to bring such ideas to fruition.
 こうしたプランの早急な具体化に向けて、さらに議論を深めていかなければならない。

(From the Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 6, 2008)
(2008年10月6日01時40分  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月 5日 (日)

日本人のホスピタリティー

(Mainichi Japan) October 4, 2008
'The true meaning of hospitality' and the abrupt launch of the Japan Tourism Agency
余録:「ヨーロッパの国の多くや、ところによっては…
(ホスピタリティーという言葉の意味と観光省の突然の設立 by srachai)

"In many European countries, and certainly in some parts of our own (Britain), a solitary lady-traveler in foreign dress would be exposed to rudeness, insult, and extortion, if not to actual danger; but I have not met with a single instance of incivility or real overcharge." ("Unbeaten Tracks in Japan").
 「ヨーロッパの国の多くや、ところによってはわが国(英国)でも、女性が外国の衣装でひとり旅をすれば無礼や侮辱にあったり、金をぼられたりするものだが、私は一度たりとも無礼な目に逢(あ)わなかったし、法外な料金をふっかけられたこともない」

Thus wrote Isabella Lucy Bird, a British traveler, of her journey to the Tohoku region and Ainu habitat in Hokkaido, and then to the Kansai district in the early Meiji period. Many foreigners that came to Japan at the end of the Edo period to the early Meji period noted how the Japanese public welcomed foreign travelers with kindness and politeness.
明治の初め東北地方から北海道のアイヌ居住地、さらに関西地方を旅した英国の女性旅行家、イザベラ・バードはそう書く。幕末から明治初年に来日した外国人の多くは、異国の旅人を迎える日本の庶民の親切さ、礼儀正しさを特筆した

One French youth was moved by "the cheery greetings 'Ohaio' and broad smiles" as well as "the people inviting travelers to have tea with them, and the flower gifts." He also said that "the politeness and friendliness of the whole neighborhood" was beyond description. (Source: Kyoji Watanabe, "Shadows of the lost world," Heibon-sha)
ある仏人青年が感動したのは「『オハイオ』という陽気なあいさつやほほえみ」「家族とお茶を飲むよう戸口ごとに引きとめる招待や花の贈り物」だった。「住民のすべての丁重さと愛想よさ」は筆舌に尽くしがたいとまで述べている(渡辺京二著「逝きし世の面影」平凡社)

Considering our past history of being accomplished hosts, we have the potential to be a great world tourist attraction. Surprisingly, this month, at a time when we are trying hard to reduce the number and size of administrative institutions, the Japan Tourism Agency was established. The inauguration was so sudden that the director-general was announced only the day before.
昔はそんなもてなし好きの国民だったのだから、世が世なら世界一の観光大国になっていてもよかったのだ。ところが役所は少ない方がいいという今になって国に観光庁ができた。それも長官が発表されたのは開庁の前日というあわただしさだ

The need to establish a new agency was created by the rapid increase in the number of foreign tourists following the government-led tourism campaign that started five years ago. With China and Russia becoming wealthy, and the onsen (hot spring) and golf boom in Taiwan and Korea, and the 'anime' boom in Europe, the government aims to attract 10 million tourists annually in the next two years.
庁新設の追い風となったのは5年前に政府がキャンペーンを始めて以来の外国人観光客の急増である。中国やロシアの富裕化、台湾や韓国の温泉やゴルフ旅行ブーム、欧州のアニメ人気も重なり、2年後には1000万人の大台を目指している

Despite foreigners who visited Japan a long time ago being impressed with the kindness of the Japanese people, the behavior of bureaucrats was less favorably received. If the Japan Tourism Agency is serious in achieving its goal of attracting 20 million tourists a year by 2020, it should follow the examples of cordial hospitality provided by ordinary Japanese people. ("Yoroku," a front page column in the Mainichi Shimbun)
気がかりなのは庶民の親切に驚いた昔の来日外国人も、日本の役人にはあまり感心しなかったことだ。新たに20年に2000万人の目標を掲げる観光庁は、まずは温かなもてなしの心を「民」から十分に学ぶべきなのかもしれない。

毎日新聞 2008年10月3日 東京朝刊

| | コメント (0)

米金融安定法成立

(Oct. 5, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

Bailout on its own is no magic bullet

金融安定法成立 早くも求められる次の一手(105日付・読売社説)

After twists and turns, a financial bailout bill has at last been signed into law in the United States.

 米国の緊急経済安定化法(金融安定化法)が、迷走の末、ようやく成立した。

The legislation has been touted as a "trump card" to save struggling U.S. financial institutions. But some of those institutions have themselves pointed out that the package is not user-friendly. Additional measures will be needed to prevent the financial crisis from worsening.

 苦境にあえぐ米国の金融機関を救う“切り札”と期待されているが、肝心の金融機関からは「使い勝手が悪い」との指摘も出ている。金融危機を抑え込むには、なお追加対策が必要となろう。

One of the pillars of the bill is to allow the U.S. administration to spend up to 700 billion dollars to buy up soured mortgage-related securities and other devalued assets held by ailing financial institutions. The U.S. House of Representatives passed the bill by a majority vote Friday.

 この法案は、金融機関の不良資産を最大7000億ドル(約74兆円)の公的資金で買い取ることなどを柱としている。米議会下院が3日、賛成多数で可決した。

When the House rejected the bailout bill Monday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 777 points, its biggest-ever single-day fall, roiling markets across the world.

 下院が9月29日に否決した時は、ニューヨーク株式市場の株価が過去最大の暴落を記録し、世界の市場を大混乱させた。

If the House had rejected the bill again, the markets would have been further destabilized, and the global financial crisis would have intensified. It is good news that the House passed the bill by a large majority.

 下院がまた否決すれば、市場は再び動揺し、世界的な危機が深刻化しただろう。大差で可決したことはとりあえず朗報だ。

As the Senate had already passed the bill Wednesday, U.S. President George W. Bush signed it into law immediately. The bill's passage into law marks progress in avoiding a financial meltdown.

 上院は1日に可決済みで、ブッシュ大統領がすぐに署名し、法律として成立した。危機の回避に向け、一歩前進といえよう。

===

Revisions to bill questionable

The bill's passage at the House on a second vote became possible because it was altered by adding provisions to enhance the protection of depositors and extend tax breaks. After the bill was modified, many representatives who had opposed the injection of public finds changed their stance.

 下院が2度目で可決できたのは、法案を修正し、預金者保護の充実や、税の優遇措置の延長などを追加したことによる。これで公的資金投入に反対していた議員の多くが賛成に回った。

Several of the revisions to the bill strike us as having more to do with congressional election campaigns than with financial stabilization. Although these pork-barrel add-ons will further deplete the United States' coffers, there was no choice other than to pass the bill to forestall a full-blown financial crisis. The immediate task for U.S. authorities is to use public funds to buy up bad assets held by struggling financial institutions.

 修正点は金融安定化とは関係が薄く、議会選挙向けとしか思えない内容も目立つ。財政への悪影響が懸念されるが、金融危機回避には、やむを得まい。今後は、公的資金による不良資産の買い取りを早急に開始することだ。

But a cause for concern is that the bailout plan contains many unclear points that will become apparent when it is actually implemented.

 だが、運用面に不透明な点も多いのが気がかりだ。

For example, setting the price at which bad assets are purchased poses a dilemma: If prices are set high, the public burden will balloon; if they are set low, the fiscal soundness of bailed-out financial institutions could be compromised.

 例えば、不良資産の買い取り価格をどう決めるのかが難しい。高い価格で買い取ると国民負担が膨らみ、価格が安すぎると、金融機関の財務健全化に力不足となる恐れが大きい。

Some point out that public funds should be injected not only to buy up toxic assets, but also to boost the capital bases of enfeebled financial institutions. This is because many of these institutions are suffering from a shortage of equity capital--a problem that will become increasingly evident.

 不良資産の買い取りに加え、金融機関の資本増強にも公的資金を投入すべきだとの指摘がある。自己資本不足に陥っている銀行などが多いからだ。これが次の焦点になるだろう。

===

Policy coordination vital

In the United States, there is a real possibility that a vicious circle will develop in which the financial crisis undermines the nation's real economy, producing further financial instability.

 米国では、金融危機が実体経済に波及し、それが金融不安に跳ね返る悪循環が現実味を帯びる。

In Europe, buffeted by the U.S. financial crisis, four major countries including Britain and France have just held a summit meeting to discuss countermeasures.

 危機が飛び火した欧州でも、フランス、イギリスなど主要4か国が首脳会議を開き、金融危機対策を協議した。

In Japan, also, there are growing signs of a business downturn. The employment situation and corporate business performances have been deteriorating rapidly.

 日本も、景気後退色が一段と強まってきた。雇用や企業業績が急速に悪化している。

At this time, it is crucially important for Japan, Europe, the United States and others to closely cooperate with each other to strengthen policy coordination.

 日米欧などが緊密に連携して、政策協調を強めることが、ますます重要な局面といえよう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 5, 2008)

20081050149  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月 4日 (土)

大分県教委汚職

(Mainichi Japan) October 3, 2008
Oita Prefectural Board of Education scandal undermines trust in teachers
記者の目:大分県教委汚職 守ろう出発点の平等=金秀蓮

The Oita Prefectural Board of Education corruption scandal, which has resulted in the arrest of several high-ranking board members and principals, affected hiring and promotion decisions, and led to the firing of 21 people hired for the 2008 academic year, is unprecedented.
 県教委幹部や校長らが次々と逮捕、起訴された大分県教委の汚職事件は、不正採用から昇任・昇進人事に発展し、08年度採用者のうち21人が失職する前代未聞の事態となった。

Initially, the scandal was seen as a case of a few unscrupulous individuals selling teacher slots for money, but as the investigation progressed, it has become clear that the entire system for hiring and promoting educators who work for Oita Prefecture is based on connections, and is a long way from being fair.
当初は一部の不心得者がカネで採用枠を売り買いした事件とみられたが、捜査が進むにつれて大分県の教職員採用や昇進は、そもそも公正さとは程遠い「コネ優先」のシステムだったことが明らかになる。

Today, the bribery cases are being tried in court, but the essential issue that this scandal is confronting us with is the unfairness of nepotism, which crush the hopes of people who are trying to embark on their careers on the basis of their own ability.
今、贈収賄罪で裁かれているのはカネの問題だが、この事件が私たちに問うている本質は、自力で人生を開こうとする人の希望を奪う、コネの不公正さそのものだと思う。

As I was covering this story, what I found most unforgiveable was the casual way in which points were added to the scores of those teacher candidates for whom favors had been requested to ensure their success, and the way in which test takers who were not involved in the scam were docked points, and prevented from passing the test.
 取材をしながら最も「許せない!」と感じたのは、合格依頼のあった受験者の点数をいとも簡単に加点し、無関係の受験者の点数を減点してまで不合格にさせていた事実だ。

According to data recovered from the personal computer of Katsuyoshi Eto, 52, a former council member of the Oita Prefectural Board of Education, who is currently on trial for accepting bribes, 21 of 41 elementary school teachers hired for the 2007 academic year were hired illegitimately, as were 14 of the elementary school teachers hired for the 2008 academic year.
In the first-stage test for the 2008 academic year, a person ranked 230th or lower was given extra points and allowed to pass, and a person who had a top-10 score failed the test. Three applicants were improperly given failing scores for two years in a row.

 捜査機関が復元した、改ざん実行役の元県教委参事、江藤勝由被告(52)=収賄罪で公判中=のパソコンのデータによると、改ざんで不正に合格した小学校教諭は07年度が合格者41人中21人、08年度は同14人とされる。08年度試験では1次試験で230番以下の受験者が加点されて合格する一方、1次が10位以内だった受験者があおりで不合格となった。2年連続で不合格にされた受験者も3人いる。

A temporary teacher who had been told his application had been "resuscitated," and had actually been "unfairly rejected in the 2007 academic year" refused to respond to requests for interviews. How angry must this person be? Even as a third party to this scandal, this person's case breaks my heart.
 「あなたは(復活採用の)救済対象者です。実は07年も落とされていた」と県教委幹部に言われたある臨時講師は、取材に口を閉ざしている。その悔しさはどれほどだろう。第三者の私ですら、胸が痛くなる。

At his trial, Eto stated that the "fixing (of test scores) was done as part of a process, and I was not aware that people would fail." Ikumi Asari, 53, a former elementary school principal who had sent Eto gift certificates to ensure that her child would pass the test, said, "Making such a request meant that one person was not going to pass. At the time I could not imagine that would happen."
 ところが、江藤被告は公判で「改ざん行為は一つの流れとしてやっていたので、不合格になる人が出ることに気付かなかった」と話した。わが子の合格のため江藤被告に商品券を贈った元小学校長、浅利幾美被告(53)は「お願いをすることで1人が不合格になる。そんなことさえも当時は想像できなかった」と語った。

This lack of imagination is not a problem that is limited to the parties directly involved in this scandal.
 この想像力の欠如は、事件の当事者たちだけの問題ではない。

Masato Ninomiya, 62, a former high-ranking official at the Oita Prefectural Board of Education, testified at his trial that in one year, favors were requested for more than 100 test takers, and he gave instructions that preference be given to requests for favors from Oita Prefectural Assembly members, municipal superintendents of education, heads of the education offices of the Oita Prefectural Board of Education, and other influential persons.
 収賄罪で起訴された元県教委教育審議監、二宮政人被告(62)の公判での証言によると、07年度採用試験の口利きリストは、自身を含む歴代3人の審議監と前教育長のものとみられる4種類があった。便宜を頼まれた受験者が100人を超えた年もあり、県議や市町村の教育長、県教委の教育事務所長ら有力者からの依頼は、優先的に合格させるよう指示したという。

The only difference between the influential people who made requests for favors and those who were arrested for paying bribes was that the latter had offered large amounts of money. Those who sought favors because they thought it was their natural right to do so may be even more nefarious than those who gave money. All members of the "education tribe" who came to view the slots for teachers as private property in accordance with long-standing custom should be considered parties to this scandal.
 彼ら有力者と、今回逮捕された依頼者の違いは、多額のわいろが動いたか否か、ということだけではないか。むしろ、当然の権利のように頼んでくることの方が、悪質性は高いかもしれない。長年の「慣例」として採用枠を私物化してきた彼ら“教育族”すべてが事件の当事者だと思う。

As I was reporting this story, I also began to ask whether this problem was limited to Oita Prefecture. After the scandal broke, the Mainichi Shimbun received many letters and statements noting that such incidents happened in "our town too," and "to someone close to me," and revealed that connections often influence the hiring of teachers. Some sympathized with the favor seekers, writing that "if I were a parent, I would ask for a favor," while others wrote that "hiring on the basis of connections is accepted practice for private corporations."
 ただ、取材をしながら「これは大分だけなのか」とも考えた。事件後、毎日新聞に寄せられた投書や意見の中には「うちの町も」「私の身近でも」というコネ採用の“告発”が少なからずあった。「親なら頼んでしまう」という同情論や、「民間企業では、コネ採用は当たり前」という声も。

I don't wish to be a stickler for decorum, but I believe that the start line should be fair for all activities. A society in which life paths are largely determined by the occupation or social standing of one's parents, and not by the efforts of the individual, is not a healthy one. Connections tend to make permanent the gaps between "haves" and "have nots," and have become part of the firmament that buries the dreams of young people.
 しかし、きれいごとを言うようだが、私は、何事もスタートラインは平等であるべきだと思う。親の職業や地位など、本人の努力でどうしようもないことが人生を大きく左右する社会は、健全ではない。コネは「持てる者」との格差を固定化し、若者の夢を奪う土壌の一つとなっている。

Many of those who were improperly hired, and subsequently forced to resign or had their job offers revoked, still do not know who had requested favorable treatment for them. Because some were outstanding part-time teachers, influential people put in a good word for them via principals and other officials. Such individuals should be hired through a different track based on recommendations and other criteria as long as transparency is established. The start line that was believed to have been the same for everyone was in fact rigged. This fact is now directing suspicion at teachers who are currently teaching, and has been harmful to the sentiments of children.
 今回、退職や採用取り消しとなった不正合格者の多くは、誰の依頼で合格させられたのかいまも分からずにいる。中には講師として優秀だったため、校長らを通じて有力者が口利きした例もあるようだ。が、そうした人材がいるなら、別枠で推薦試験をするなど透明性を確保すればいい。皆同じだと思っていたスタートラインが実は大きくゆがんでいた。その事実が、いま教壇に立っている先生にも疑念を向けさせ、子供たちの心まで傷つけている。

The Oita Prefectural Board of Education has admitted that improper hiring practices had been followed organization-wide for many years, and has implemented reforms to increase the transparency of the teacher recruitment exam. And the Oita Prefectural Assembly has adopted a resolution banning such favor-seeking. But I must reiterate that the sources of this scandal are not the flaws in the system as such but rather the inability to imagine that others would suffer, and the proclivity to see only those around themselves, and not to think about the effort and lives of test takers. These shortcomings have made people look upon the role of connections as natural, and incapable of experiencing guilt.
 大分県教委は、不正が長年組織ぐるみで行われていたことを認め、試験の透明度を高める改革をした。県議会も口利き禁止を決議した。が、繰り返すが、事件の根源は制度の不備でなく、自分の周りしか見えず受験者の努力や人生に思い至らなかった、他者の痛みへの想像力の欠如だ。それがコネの存在を当然視させ、罪の意識をまひさせた。

I believe that the me-first attitude is rotting our society today. Without putting on airs, I want to strive not to forget the anger that I have felt while working on this story. We want children to believe that "effort will be rewarded." (By Kim Sooryeon, Oita Bureau)
 「自分さえよければ」が、今の社会をむしばんでいると思う。その点では私も偉そうなことは言えない。だからこそ、この取材で感じた憤りを忘れないよう、心したい。子供たちの世代に「努力は報われる」と信じてもらえるように。(大分支局)

毎日新聞 2008年9月30日 0時01分

| | コメント (0)

年金記録改ざん

(Oct. 4, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
SIA colluded with wicked employers
年金記録改ざん 悪質事業主と結託した社保庁(10月4日付・読売社説)

It now appears that corporate pension records have been doctored on a huge scale.
 厚生年金の記録改ざんは相当に大きな規模で行われていたようだ。

Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Yoichi Masuzoe on Friday revealed that 1.43 million of 150 million pension records kept in the Social Insurance Agency's computers contain anomalies suggesting they were tampered with.
 舛添厚生労働相は、社会保険庁のコンピューターで管理している厚生年金記録1億5000万件のうち、改ざんされた可能性のある不自然なものが、延べ143万件に上ることを明らかにした。

The number represents only those records made since March 1986, when pension record-keeping was computerized. The Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry should conduct further investigations into the problem and swiftly disclose the results.
 しかも、記録がコンピューター化された1986年以降に限って判明した分に過ぎない。厚労省は実態をさらに調査して、速やかに開示すべきである。

The corporate pension premium burden is borne equally by companies and employees, with the premiums being automatically deducted from each salaried worker's paycheck. The higher the salary is, the higher the premium and pension payment become.
 厚生年金の保険料は、企業と従業員が折半して納める。従業員の負担分は給料からの天引きだ。月給が高ければ保険料も高く、老後に受け取る年金も多い。

But the records in question show that the employees did not pay premium amounts corresponding to what was deducted from their salaries. What happened?
 ところが、天引き額に見合った納付記録になっていない、とはどういうことか。

===

Thorough probe needed

In many cases, financially struggling companies are believed to have underreported their employees' monthly salaries to the agency. Doing so reduces a company's share of premium payments and allow it to use surplus funds from its employees' premium payments.
 多くの場合、経営の苦しい企業が社保庁に対して、従業員の月給(標準報酬月額)を低く申告したと見られる。事業主は本来納めるべき保険料が安くなり、従業員から天引きした保険料も流用できるからだ。

Furthermore, there are strong suspicions that the SIA gave tacit approval to this practice or even offered guidance on how to carry it out.
 さらに、こうした行為を社保庁職員が黙認し、指導までしていた疑いが濃厚である。

If companies whose premium payment are in arrears start paying premiums after pension records are doctored to reduce their burdens, the SIA's rate of premium collection will go up. The interests of wicked employers and time-serving SIA officials are served by doing so.
 保険料を滞納している企業が、記録改ざんによって負担が軽減した結果、保険料を納めるようになれば社保庁の徴収実績は上がる。悪質な事業主と姑息(こそく)な社保庁職員の利害は一致する。

"I surmise there has been organizational involvement of the SIA in this," Masuzoe said. But mere conjecture is no longer appropriate at this stage, when such a large number of records are suspected to have doctored. No stone must be left unturned in investigations into the SIA's involvement, and its responsibilities in this scandal must be identified.
 舛添厚労相は「社保庁の組織的な関与があったと推量する」としている。だが、これほどの数で改ざんの可能性があるというのは、もはや推量の段階ではあるまい。社保庁の関与を徹底的に調査し、責任を追及する必要があろう。

Of course, the most important task is to restore the right of victims of this scandal to receive full pension benefits.
 無論、最も大切なことは被害者の権利回復だ。

It is essential to urgently inform the holders of the dubious 1.43 million records, particularly elderly people living on pensions, of the problem. If their records are found to have been tampered with, the government must immediately provide relief to them.
 まず、143万件の記録の持ち主、特に年金の受給が始まっている高齢者には早急に知らせる必要がある。改ざんがあれば、ただちに救済しなければならない。

===

Make data easier to decipher

Also, more effective steps are necessary to urge people to check their pension records.
 国民に対する年金記録確認の呼びかけも、一段と工夫が要る。

Letters currently being sent to pension subscribers informing them of their premium payment records do not include information about the benchmark salaries that were used to calculate their premium payments. It is, therefore, difficult for victims to spot irregularities from record-tampering, if any.
 現在届いている「ねんきん特別便」には、保険料を算定したその時々の標準報酬は記載がなく、改ざんされても気づきにくい。

The ministry plans to include benchmark salaries used for premium calculation in pension-record notification letters from next year. Even so, it is not an easy job for subscribers to determine if there are questionable points in the monthly salaries they received decades ago.
 厚労省は、来年以降の「ねんきん定期便」には標準報酬を記載する方針だ。しかしそれでも、何十年も前の月給に不審な点があるかどうか、見極めることは容易ではないだろう。

Soliciting ideas to make pension-record notification easier to understand from a broader range of people may well be needed.
 分かりやすい「定期便」にするために、幅広く知恵を募ることも必要だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 4, 2008)
(2008年10月4日02時11分  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

1等空佐免職

(Oct. 3, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
News media has duty to let the public know
1等空佐免職 知る権利に応える報道の使命(10月3日付・読売社説)

In a disciplinary action, the Defense Ministry on Thursday dismissed an Air Self-Defense Force colonel who belonged to the ministry's Defense Intelligence Headquarters.
 防衛省が、情報本部所属の1等空佐を懲戒免職処分とした。

It is the duty of news media to provide information that should be made public, and the punishment the colonel received could impede the freedom of news-gathering activities and reporting.
 報道機関には、国民に知らせるべき情報を伝える使命がある。そうした取材・報道の自由を妨げかねない処分である。

In March, the SDF's criminal investigative unit sent papers on the colonel on suspicion of leaking "defense secrets" to a Yomiuri Shimbun reporter concerning a Chinese submarine, an apparent violation of the Self-Defense Forces Law.
 1等空佐は中国潜水艦の動向に関する「防衛秘密」を読売新聞記者に漏らしたとして、自衛隊法違反(秘密漏洩(ろうえい))容疑で自衛隊の警務隊から書類送検されていた。

It is unusual for disciplinary action to be taken before the public prosecutors office's investigation has reached its conclusion. The ministry explained that faith in the ability of the ministry and the SDF to keep material confidential was seriously damaged by the incident. It also said it took into consideration the impact of the incident at home and abroad.
 検察庁の捜査の結論が出る前の処分は異例だ。防衛省・自衛隊の秘密保全に対する信頼を著しく損ね、内外に及ぼした影響などを総合的に勘案した、という。

Were they 'defense secrets'?

In its morning edition on May 31, 2005, The Yomiuri Shimbun carried an article that a Chinese Navy submarine in the South China Sea had been crippled by what was believed to have been an onboard fire while it was traveling underwater and was being towed.
 読売新聞は2005年5月、中国海軍の潜水艦が南シナ海で潜航中に火災とみられる事故を起こして航行不能となり、曳航(えいこう)されている、という記事を掲載した。

Without question, important defense information concerning national security must be kept strictly confidential. However, could the content of the Yomiuri report really be considered "defense secrets"?
 安全保障に関する防衛上の重要情報は無論、厳格に管理されねばならない。だが、報道内容は本当に「防衛秘密」にあたるのか。

The article reported an unusual incident that took place in waters around Japan. Because the surfaced submarine was being towed, there was a possibility that it could be discovered by other vessels in the area. Experts pointed out that the content of the report would not endanger Japanese or U.S. national security.
 記事は、日本の周辺海域で起きた異変を伝えたものだ。潜水艦は浮上して曳航されており、いずれは周囲の船舶に発見される可能性もあったろう。専門家も、日米の安全保障を脅威にさらすような内容ではない、と指摘している。

Information about the submarine's accident was given to the SDF by U.S. forces. In a previous case, classified SDF information provided by U.S. forces about an Aegis-equipped destroyer was leaked. Some observers consider that, in the latest case, the ministry needed to set an example to show the United States that it could guarantee confidentiality in intelligence in an effort to ensure bilateral cooperation.
 潜水艦の事故情報は、米軍からもたらされた。自衛隊では、米軍から提供されたイージス艦情報の流出事件もあった。日米の情報協力を進めるうえで、米国に配慮し、秘密保持の強い姿勢を示す必要があったとの見方もある。

Reporter did right thing

The punishment the colonel received may serve to discourage public servants involved in government decision-making or in the handling of important data from releasing information, thereby inhibiting the media's reporting role, which is to satisfy the public's right to know.
 “見せしめ”的な処分は、国の政策決定や重要情報にかかわった公務員を萎縮(いしゅく)させ、国民の知る権利に応える報道の役割を制約するおそれがある。

Which is more significant, the public interest or a potential adverse impact on the national interest because of reporting? Weighing such a question has to be carefully examined when it comes to issues related to national security and diplomacy. Information considered important for the public to know must be disclosed, as long as it does not damage national interests.
 報道による国民の利益と国家の不利益と、どちらが大きいか。安全保障や外交に絡む問題は、そのバランスを慎重に見極めねばならない。そのうえで、国益を損なわなければ、国民に必要な情報は積極的に公表すべきだ。

The public's understanding of the SDF can only be deepened this way.
 それでこそ、自衛隊の活動に対する国民の理解も深まる。

When the Foreign Ministry's classified information regarding the 1972 reversion of Okinawa to Japanese sovereignty was leaked, the Supreme Court in 1978 judged that news-gathering methods of acquiring information could be considered a legitimate business practice, as long as it is done for purely news-reporting purposes and is deemed appropriate under normal social conventions that are in the spirit of the law.
 沖縄返還をめぐる外務省機密漏洩事件で、最高裁は1978年、「正当な業務」と認められる取材手法について、「真に報道目的で、法秩序全体の精神に照らして相当だと社会通念上認められるもの」との判断を示した。

The Yomiuri Shimbun considers our news-gathering was appropriate in this instance.
 読売新聞では、取材が適正だったことを確かめている。

We would like to affirm once again the principle that we report information that the public should know while also maintaining the confidentiality of news sources.
 いかなる場合も取材源を秘匿しつつ、国民に伝えなければならない情報は的確に報じる。その原則を改めて確認しておきたい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 3, 2008)
(2008年10月3日01時51分  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月 2日 (木)

金融崩壊危機連鎖

(Mainichi Japan) October 1, 2008
Financial collapse: Chain of crises that started in the U.S. (Part 1)
金融崩壊:米発・危機の連鎖/上 「悪夢」世界を巡る

 ◇ワシントンの連中は市場を壊す気か
 ◇一時取引停止市場も 米大統領声明、新提案なく

"I'm disappointed by the outcome, but I assure our citizens and citizens around the world that this is not the end of the legislative process," President George W. Bush stated on Tuesday. The vote the day before by the United States Congress to deny the financial rescue plan to put an end to the financial crisis has resulted in a record New York stock market plunge. The president made the statement requesting Congress to work on the legislation without delay.
 「(法案否決に)失望したが、これで法制化の道が断たれたわけではない。世界中の市民のために法案成立への作業を止めてはならない」。金融危機の収束を図る金融安定化法案を米下院が否決し、ニューヨーク株式市場が史上最大の下げ幅を記録した悪夢の月曜日から一夜明けた30日午前8時45分(日本時間同日午後9時45分)。ブッシュ米大統領はホワイトハウスで声明を読み上げ、議会側に一刻も早い法案可決を求めた。

He stressed that "the consequences will worsen each day if we do not act. If our nation continues on this course, the economic damage will be painful and lasting." He also pleaded to Congress in a strong voice, "and for the financial security of every American, Congress must act."
 ブッシュ大統領は「議会が何もしないでいる間に、状況は日々悪化している。この法案が成立しなければ、それに伴う損失は長期の痛みを伴うものとなる」と危機感を強調。「すべての米国民のために議会は即刻行動しなければならない」と強い調子で下院の議員らに訴えかけた。

However, the less-than-four-minute statement had no new approach, and the market reaction was quite chilly. "At least the atmosphere of crisis got through," said an American economist. Congress has no prospects to reassume talks. Both presidential nominees Democrat Senator Barack Obama and Republican Senator John McCain urged Congress to reassume discussion on the bill, but lacked dynamics. The general view is uncertainty about the future has not been dissolved, and the chain of financial crises seems to be inexhaustible.
 しかし、わずか4分足らずの演説に新たな提案はなく、市場の受け止め方は「危機感だけは伝わってきた」(米エコノミスト)と冷ややかで、議会が協議を再開するめども立っていない。大統領候補のオバマ上院議員(民主党)とマケイン上院議員(共和党)も30日、相次いで法案審議再開を促したが、議会を動かす決定力はない。「先行きの不透明感は解消されていない」との見方は強く、金融危機の連鎖は底なし沼の様相だ。

The New York stock market was hit with a shock wave on Monday afternoon. News that Congress voted down the legislation made the rounds, and it took less than 10 minutes to plunge the average 30 Dow industrial stocks down some 400 dollars. "Is Washington trying to destroy the market?" the market shrieked. The public thought why should it save well-paid people's financial institutions with their tax money? The taxpayer's discontent was reflected through the rejection by Congress.
 ニューヨーク株式市場に衝撃が走ったのは前日の29日午後(日本時間30日未明)だった。「下院が法案を否決した」とのニュースが伝わり、ダウ工業株30種平均は10分足らずで約400ドルも下落。「ワシントンの(政治家)連中は市場を壊す気か」。市場から悲鳴にも似たどよめきが起こった。「高給取りの金融機関を巨額の税金で救うのか」。国民の間に広がっていた不満がそのまま下院の法案否決という形で表れた。

With the Nov. 4 presidential and congressional elections drawing near, world economics were not a part of most lawmakers' vocabulary. Congressman Dean Heller of Nevada huffed, "I cannot with good conscience put Nevada's taxpayers on the line for the foolish excesses of Wall Street."
 米大統領選と議会選が11月4日に迫り、大半の議員は世界経済のことなど眼中にない。ヘラー下院議員(共和党、ネバダ州選出)は「ウォール街の連中が、行き過ぎたバカげた行為で作った問題に、ネバダの納税者を巻き込むのは良心が許さない」と息巻いた。

The plunge in the New York stock market rippled around the world. Brazil's Sao Paulo market had to be temporarily closed down because of the unforeseen substantial drop. President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva did not hide his anger, "It's not fair for healthy emergent nations and poor countries to pay for the casino built by the American economy." The Tokyo market also suffered a knock down on Tuesday. All Asian markets plunged too, except for the Shanghai market that was closed that day. The Russian market also went into a free fall, and had to be suspended.
 ニューヨーク株式市場の急落は世界に波及、ブラジルのサンパウロ市場も想定を超えた大幅安となり、一時取引停止に。ルラ大統領は「健全な新興国や貧困国はカジノのような米国の経済政策の代償を負うべきではない」と憤りをあらわにした。30日の東京市場も全面安となり、株価ボードは下落を示す緑色に染まった。同日は休場だった上海市場を除き、アジア株も軒並み下落。ロシア株式市場も値下がりに歯止めがかからず、取引一時停止に追い込まれた。

In Europe, the London market bounced back, but British Prime Minister Gordon Brown maintained his vigilance and pledged that he would take all necessary steps to guarantee the stability of the British banking system. Although the Frankfurt market also made a kickback, the inferno of the European financial market is far from cooled down.
 欧州もロンドン市場は反発したが、ブラウン英首相は警戒を緩めず「英国の安定維持のため、中央銀行総裁や財務相と必要なすべての行動を取る」と表明。フランクフルト市場なども値を戻したものの、金融市場の動揺は収まったとはいえない。

Ireland announced on Tuesday a sweeping guarantee of all deposits in the country's banks in a bid to stabilize the Irish financial sector.
 アイルランド政府は30日朝、国内の金融システム安定化を図るため今後2年間、国内銀行の預金を全額保護する異例の措置を発表した。

毎日新聞 2008年10月1日 東京朝刊

| | コメント (0)

国会代表質問

(Oct. 2, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
Debate leaves more questions than answers
国会代表質問 すれ違いに終わった党首対決(10月2日付・読売社説)

Democratic Party of Japan President Ichiro Ozawa's speech during the Diet questioning session Wednesday was rather unusual. Was this an attempt to counter the equally unconventional policy speech given by Prime Minister Taro Aso to the Diet on Monday?
 異例の所信表明演説には、異例の代表質問で応じるということか。

Political maneuvering between the Liberal Democratic Party and the DPJ ahead of the next House of Representatives election is well and truly under way.
次期衆院選に向けて、自民、民主両党の駆け引きが本格化している。

Ozawa's speech, which he regarded as a policy speech he would make if he were prime minister, stressed mostly how a DPJ-led government would change Japan. Ozawa clearly spelled out policy pledges for the next lower house election, such as the provision of child-rearing allowances and a subsidy to guarantee a certain level of income for each farmer, and indicated the time frame for carrying out these policies.
 民主党の小沢代表は、自らの代表質問を「所信表明」と位置づけ、「民主党政権」が日本をどう変えるか、をもっぱら力説した。この中で、子ども手当や農家の戸別所得補償など、衆院選の政権公約の実施時期を個別に明示した。

The DPJ took a step forward from the pledges contained in its manifesto for last year's House of Councillors election by presenting a "flow chart" for carrying out policies. The two sets of policy pledges, however, are similar in that both spelled out policies without clearly stating where financial resources to fund them would come from.
 政策の「工程表」を示したのは、昨年夏の参院選公約より一歩前進だ。だが、財源の裏付けがあいまいな点はあまり変わらない。

Ozawa called for reconfiguring the net expenditures of the general and special accounts--212 trillion yen per year--and using about 10 percent of the budgets, or 20.5 trillion yen, for financing the DPJ's policies.
 小沢代表は、一般・特別会計の年間純支出計212兆円を抜本的に組み替え、その約1割の20・5兆円を財源にする、という。

Slashing expenditures, however, is difficult when more than 80 percent of them are earmarked for debt-servicing costs and social security benefits payments. The so-called "buried gold," or surplus funds in special accounts, which the DPJ has proposed tapping for implementing some of its policies, will not be an inexhaustible financial resource.
 しかし、支出の8割以上は国債償還、社会保障給付などで、削減は困難だ。特別会計の「埋蔵金」も恒久的財源にはならない。

===

Dodging tough questions

When the DPJ officially announces its manifesto for assuming power, the party must give clear answers to such questions.
 民主党が政権公約を正式に発表する際には、こうした疑問に明確に答える必要があろう。

This was not the first "policy speech" Ozawa has made during a Diet questioning session by party representatives. Ozawa adopted a similar tack in January 1996 when he was allowed to question the policy speech made by then Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto immediately after becoming chief of the now-defunct New Frontier Party.
 小沢代表の代表質問での「所信表明」は、初めてではない。新進党党首に就任した直後の1996年1月にも、当時の橋本首相に対し同様の手法をとっている。

Ozawa, meanwhile, did not directly answer five questions Aso had directed at the DPJ during the prime minister's policy speech.
 一方で、麻生首相が所信表明演説で発した五つの質問に対しては、正面から答えなかった。

For example, Ozawa did not answer whether his party will give priority to the Japan-U.S. security alliance or the United Nations in diplomatic and security matters. He merely said, "The Japan-U.S. security alliance and the policy of placing the United Nations at the core of this nation's diplomatic policies do not contradict each other at all."
 例えば、日米同盟と国連の優先順位については、「日米同盟と国連中心主義は何ら矛盾しない」との無難な発言にとどめた。

Ozawa probably judged that it would not work to his advantage to discuss in detail the topics proposed by Aso. However, these debates will fail to get to the crux of each issue if both leaders simply speak past each other by making assertions.
 相手の土俵に乗るのは得策でない。そんな判断が小沢代表にあったのだろう。だが、双方が互いの主張を一方的に述べるだけでは、議論はすれ違うばかりだ。

===

Still time for debates

Debates only grab the attention of listeners when each side makes its position clear, while making rebuttals to the other's arguments.
 自らの立場を明確にしつつ、きちんと反論し合ってこそ、聞き応えのある論議になる。

Pointing to the fact that the administrations of Aso's two predecessors--Shinzo Abe and Yasuo Fukuda--were short-lived, Ozawa called for an early dissolution of the lower house. "It only stands to reason in a parliamentary democracy to hand over the reins of government to the opposition and hold a general election," Ozawa said.
 小沢代表は、安倍、福田両政権が短命に終わったことを踏まえ、「野党に政権を渡し、総選挙を行うのが議会制民主主義の筋道」と早期の衆院解散を求めた。

Aso scoffed at Ozawa's assertion by saying, "The LDP is the party that has the unyielding capability to hold the reins of government and assume responsibility for the future of Japan." Aso upped the ante by touching on Ozawa's admission when a proposal to form a grand coalition between the LDP and DPJ collapsed last year that doubts were cast on the DPJ's ability to assume power.
 麻生首相は「確固たる政権担当能力を持ち、日本の未来に責任を持てるのは自民党だ」と切り返した。昨秋に大連立構想が頓挫した際、小沢代表が、民主党の政権担当能力に疑問が示されていると認めたことにも触れ、反論した。

The face-off between the LDP and DPJ presidents ended without getting down to the essence of the issues. But the two leaders still have more opportunities for open debates. A question-and-answer session is scheduled for next week's meeting of the lower house Budget Committee to deliberate the supplementary budget.
 この日の党首対決は、全般的に“消化不良”に終わったが、まだ機会はある。来週は、補正予算案審議のため、一問一答方式の衆院予算委員会が開かれる予定だ。

We believe this meeting would be a good opportunity for Ozawa to put forward more questions. We hope he will hold more in-depth debates with Aso.
 小沢代表が再び質問に立ってはどうか。麻生首相と、より深みのある論戦を展開してほしい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 2, 2008)
(2008年10月2日01時50分  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

2008年10月 1日 (水)

大阪個室ビデオ店火災

(Mainichi Japan) October 1, 2008
Fifteen killed, 10 injured in fire at Osaka video shop
個室ビデオ店火災:15人死亡 放火で男客に逮捕状 大阪

OSAKA -- Fifteen people were killed and 10 others injured in a fire at a video shop here in the early hours of Wednesday, police said.

The fire broke out at Video DVD Cat's, on the first floor of a seven-story building in Naniwa-ku, Osaka, and burned 37 square meters of the establishment, according to investigators.

Fifteen men, believed to be customers, were found dead in individual video rooms. Ten other men and women were injured, some seriously.

The shop manager was quoted as telling police that the fire started in one of its 32 individual rooms, each equipped with a bed and a television set. At the time, there were 26 customers and three employees on the premises. Most of the customers were apparently asleep.

"Shortly after 2:30 a.m., I smelled something burning, and opened the door to find the corridor filled with smoke. It was dark, but I managed to get out of the shop after bumping into a few people," said one customer. "I was just about to go to bed. It's horrifying to imagine that I would have died if I had fallen asleep."

Local police are trying to identify the victims, and are investigating the cause of the blaze.

毎日新聞速報(日本語オリジナル版)↓

個室ビデオ店火災:15人死亡 放火で男客に逮捕状 大阪

 1日午前2時55分ごろ、大阪市浪速区難波中3の雑居ビル「檜(ひのき)ビル」(鉄筋コンクリート造り7階建て)1階にある個室ビデオ店「ビデオDVDキャッツなんば店」=島本和典店長(32)=から煙が出ているのを店員が見つけ、119番通報した。大阪市消防局によると、同店約220平方メートルのうち約40平方メートルが焼け、約5時間半後に鎮火した。この火事で同店の男性客15人が死亡、男女10人が重軽症で、うち3人が重症という。死因はほとんどが、一酸化炭素中毒とみられる。大阪府警捜査1課は、業務上過失致死傷などの疑いもあるとみて浪速署に捜査本部を設置。死亡者の身元確認を急ぐとともに、出火元の部屋にいた40歳代の無職の男が火をつけた疑いが強まったとして現住建造物放火、殺人、殺人未遂容疑で逮捕状を取った。総務省消防庁も職員7人を現地に派遣した。

 同課や大阪市消防局によると、店内にはビデオを観賞する部屋が32室あり、出火当時は客26人と店員3人がいた。店長は「このうちの1室から出火した」と話しているという。

 出火元の部屋にいた男にけがはなかった。店内にいた客によると、店側の避難誘導はなかったという。

 店は24時間営業で、1~2畳ほどの個室にはDVDデッキや簡易ベッドなどがある。終電に遅れるなどしてホテル代わりに利用する客も多かった。出火当時は客の大半が眠っており、逃げ遅れて煙に巻かれたとみられる。死亡者のほとんどが部屋で見つかり、数人は通路で倒れていた。

 仮眠のために同店を利用していた兵庫県伊丹市の男性会社員(37)は「午前2時半過ぎに何かが燃えるようなにおいがした。『何やこれ』という声がして、個室のドアを開けたら煙が充満していた。真っ暗で、廊下で2、3人にぶつかりながら外に出た。火は見なかったが、煙がすごく、店を出た直後に『ジリジリ』と火災報知機が鳴った。眠っていたら死んでいたのかと思うとぞっとする」と唇を震わせた。

 現場は南海難波駅南西約100メートルの雑居ビルなどが建ち並ぶ地域。消防車など40台が出て、一時は騒然となった。

 「キャッツ」運営会社のホームページによると、同社は大阪で4店、京都、神戸で各1店の計6店を展開。なんば店の利用料金は1時間500円、午後11時から午前10時までのナイトコースは1500円。

 大阪府警保安課によると、個室ビデオ店はアダルト作品を主に貸し出している場合は風営法の該当施設となる。警察庁の運用基準では、アダルト作品が7、8割以上を占める場合は店舗型性風俗特殊営業と判断され、管轄の警察署への届け出が必要。ただ、大阪府内で届け出のある店は3店(8月末現在)のみで、キャッツなんば店は届け出がなく、府警は実態を調べる。

 大阪市消防局が昨年5月、同店を立ち入り検査した際、報告漏れなどの不備はあったが、消防法上の重大な違反はなかったという。同局は1日、市内約50カ所の個室ビデオ店、約350カ所のカラオケボックス店などの緊急立ち入り検査を始める。

毎日新聞 2008年10月1日 5時09分(最終更新 10月1日 14時06分)

| | コメント (0)

米国発金融危機

(Oct. 1, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
U.S. must take action to cure financial woes
米国発金融危機 米政府と議会は迅速に動け(10月1日付・読売社説)

Some economists are warning that the world economy is on the verge of falling into a depression. This global financial crisis, which has its origins in the United States, must be contained using any and every means available.
 世界経済は恐慌の瀬戸際、という声さえ出てきた。米国発の金融危機はなんとしても抑え込む必要がある。

Above all else, the U.S. government and the U.S. Congress must wake up to their responsibilities as they oversee the economy that is the epicenter of the subprime loan problem. They also should work together to enact a 700 billion dollars financial bailout package as soon as possible.
 米国政府と議会は、サブプライムローン問題の“震源地”として、責任を自覚してもらいたい。金融安定化法案の成立を急ぐべきだ。

After the bailout package failed to pass the U.S. House of Representatives, the Dow Jones industrials index on the New York Stock Exchange plunged by a record 777 points Monday, surpassing the 684-point drop on the first trading day after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States.
 29日のニューヨーク株式市場の株価は、前週末比で777ドル安と急落した。2001年9月の同時テロ直後をしのぐ過去最大の下げ幅だった。

This nosedive of U.S. share prices was echoed across the world. Tokyo stocks swooned Tuesday and the key Nikkei index lost nearly 500 points. Stock prices fell almost across the board on every market in Asia and Europe.
 株安は世界に波及し、30日の東京市場の株価も500円近く値下がりした。アジア、欧州の株価も軒並み大幅に下落した。

When will this chain of falling stock prices stop? The U.S. dollar was widely sold on foreign exchange markets, strengthening the yen against the dollar. This could threaten the credibility of the dollar.
 世界の連鎖株安に、いつ歯止めがかかるのか。外国為替市場ではドルが売られ、ドル安・円高が進む。ドルの信認が揺らぎかねない事態だ。

===

Package rejected, stock down
 ◆法案否決が株急落招く◆

Turmoil in the stock markets started after the House unexpectedly rejected the bailout package. The legislation would have allowed the U.S. government to buy bad mortgages held by troubled banks and other financial institutions with taxpayers' money to prevent a complete financial meltdown.
 市場の大混乱を招いたきっかけは、米国の金融安定化法案が、大方の予想に反し議会下院で否決されたことだ。
 法案は、米国政府が金融機関の不良資産を公的資金で買い取り、危機を防ぐのが目的だ。

The White House and congressional leaders had reportedly agreed to an acceptable revision of an earlier version of the package after marathon weekend talks. This appeared to set the stage for Congress to pass the rescue plan without delay. However, the package was rejected after many lawmakers of U.S. President George W. Bush's Republican Party balked at the injection of taxpayer dollars as outlined under the rescue plan and voted against it.
 政府と議会が法案の修正で合意し、すぐに可決・成立するはずだった。しかし、ブッシュ大統領の与党である共和党議員らが、税金の投入に反発して大量に造反し、否決してしまった。

This rejection betrayed the expectations of the market. The feeling of disappointment spread and stocks were sold in a state of panic. Congress should bear an extremely heavy responsibility for this situation.
 市場の期待が裏切られた形だ。失望感が広がり、パニック的な売りを招いたのも当然だろう。議会の責任は極めて重い。

Presidential and congressional elections are scheduled for November, so lawmakers are still coordinating opinions on the package and calculating the political risk of backing the measure, which is unpopular among voters. Are they aware that the global financial system is in critical condition? The U.S. government and Congress reportedly will resume talks on the package soon, but its passage remains far from certain.
 11月の大統領選と議会選を控えて、議会では、保身の思惑絡みの駆け引きが続く。世界の金融システムが危機的状況にあるという認識が不足しているのでないか。政府と議会は、法案協議を仕切り直しする見通しだが、今のところ、事態は流動的だ。

In Japan, the financial turmoil and the recession that followed the collapse of the asset-inflated "bubble" economy in the early 1990s stubbornly hung around because the government failed to inject public money into troubled banks and financial institutions soon after the nation's financial system became unstable. U.S. authorities should draw on the lessons learned from Japan's bitter experience to deal with the current situation quickly.
 日本では、バブル崩壊後に金融システム不安が起きた時、公的資金の注入が遅れ、金融不安と景気後退を長期化させた。その日本を教訓とし、米当局は素早く対応しなければならない。

Both U.S. Republican presidential candidate John McCain and his Democratic counterpart Barack Obama should urge Congress to support the rescue plan.
 大統領候補の共和党のジョン・マケイン、民主党のバラク・オバマ両上院議員も、議会に協力を促すべきだ。

While the White House and congressional leaders were trying to cobble together a fragile compromise on the package, the financial upheaval was only getting worse.
 金融安定化法案をめぐる政府と議会のギリギリの調整が続いている間にも、金融危機は深刻化しつつあった。

===

Crisis spreads to Europe
 ◆欧州にも危機が飛び火◆

The U.S. government announced Monday that Citigroup Inc. would acquire the banking operations of Wachovia Corp., the fourth-largest U.S. bank, which faces bankruptcy and has become the latest victim of the deepening financial crisis.
 経営難に陥った米大手銀行ワコビアは29日、大手銀行シティグループに救済合併されることになった。

Meanwhile, the crisis has spread to Europe. Financial authorities have decided to nationalize some operations of midsized banks in Britain, the Netherlands, Iceland and other countries.
欧州にも危機が飛び火し、イギリスやオランダ、アイスランドなどで、中堅銀行の一部国有化などが決まった。

More and more financial institutions are facing credit difficulties as short-term markets in the United States and Europe see an increasing demand for funds.
 欧米などの短期金融市場では、資金需給が逼迫(ひっぱく)し、資金調達に苦しむ金融機関が増えている。

Predictions that a repeat of the Great Depression of the 1930s could be looming if the chain-reaction crisis cannot be stopped are looking increasingly prescient.
 危機の連鎖が止まらないと、大恐慌以来の事態を招きかねないとの指摘が現実味を帯びてくる。

Many economists predict the financial turmoil will weaken the U.S. real economy and further whip up uncertainty in the financial market.
 金融不安が米国の実体経済を冷え込ませ、金融の混乱にさらなる拍車がかかるとの見方も強い。

Meanwhile, financial authorities around the world are being forced to walk a tightrope as they try to deal with the crisis.
 各国の金融当局は綱渡りの対応を迫られている。

Central banks around the world, including the Federal Reserve Board, the European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan, galvanized their joint efforts Monday to supply massive amounts of U.S. dollars to their respective money markets, demonstrating their resolve to support cash-strapped banks and financial institutions.
 米連邦準備制度理事会(FRB)、欧州中央銀行(ECB)、日銀などは、ドル資金を自国市場に大量に供給する協調策を拡充した。金融機関の資金繰りを支える強い決意を示すものだ。

However, the problem is that financial institutions are losing corporate vitality as losses from securitized mortgages they hold are increasing as house prices in the United States fall. The chorus of economists calling for public funds to be used to strengthen these institutions' capital bases is growing louder.
 だが、問題は、米国の住宅価格が下げ止まらず、値下がりした証券化商品を抱える金融機関の損失が拡大し、経営体力を消耗していることだ。金融機関の自己資本の増強にも公的資金を使うべきだ、との声が強まっている。

Central banks around the world must enhance their mutual cooperation and try to stabilize the global financial market by using every tool they have available.
 各国当局は連携をさらに強め、あらゆる政策を総動員して、市場の安定化を図らねばならない。

===

Japanese economy chilled
 ◆冷水を浴びた日本経済◆

The spreading financial crisis and volatility on global money markets have poured cold water on the stuttering Japanese economy, which has shown signs of falling into recession.
 金融危機の拡大と世界的な市場の混乱は、景気の後退色が強まり「カゼ気味」だった日本経済に冷水を浴びせている。

The economic downswing was clearly shown in economic indexes for August announced Tuesday.
 このところの景気の退潮は、30日に発表された8月の経済指標を見ても明らかだ。

The index of industrial output showed the largest drop in history and household spending decreased for six straight months. The unemployment rate ticked up to 4.2 percent, rising to the highest level in about two years.
 鉱工業生産は過去最大の落ち込みとなり、家計の消費支出は6か月連続マイナスだった。失業率も4・2%と、約2年ぶりの高水準まで上昇した。

Market instability--such as plunging stock prices and the appreciation of the yen against the dollar--will deter investment and consumption.
 株価の下落や円高・ドル安の進行などマーケットの波乱も、投資や消費の意欲を萎(な)えさせる。

The Bank of Japan has injected more than 20 trillion yen into the Tokyo money market since major U.S. investment bank Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. filed for bankruptcy in mid-September. Nonetheless, foreign banks still have the jitters over their cash-flow situations. The government needs to take flexible and agile policy measures to prevent paralysis of the financial system.
 日銀はリーマン・ブラザーズが9月中旬に破綻(はたん)してから、20兆円を超える資金を市場に追加供給した。それでも外資系銀行などの資金繰り不安は根強い。金融システムのマヒを防ぐため、柔軟で機動的な政策運営が必要だ。

Before anything else, it must pass a supplementary budget for fiscal 2008 as soon as possible to implement the comprehensive economic package designed to alleviate the pains of the weakening economy.
 まずは、景気悪化の痛みを和らげる狙いで策定された総合経済対策を実施するため、補正予算の成立を急がねばならない。

The U.S. Congress rejected the bailout package out of partisan interests and aggravated the financial confusion. Japan must not repeat this mistake.
 党利党略で法案を否決し、混乱に輪をかけた米議会の轍(てつ)を、日本は踏んではなるまい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 1, 2008)
(2008年10月1日02時08分  読売新聞)

| | コメント (0)

« 2008年9月 | トップページ | 2008年11月 »