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2009年9月

2009年9月30日 (水)

東アジア共同体 経済連携の強化で環境整備を

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 30, 2009)
Economic cooperation path to community
東アジア共同体 経済連携の強化で環境整備を(9月30日付・読売社説)

Even talk of an "East Asian community" may be getting too far ahead of the reality of the situation.
 「東アジア共同体」という言葉だけが先走ってはいないか。

It is important first to improve the environment for its creation and proceed with the substantiation of the concept through steady efforts to strengthen economic partnerships in the region.
 地道な経済連携の強化を通じて、その環境を整え、具体化を進めていくことが重要だろう。

The foreign ministers of Japan, China and South Korea, at their meeting in Shanghai on Monday, agreed to strengthen their cooperation to create an East Asian community.
 上海で行われた日中韓外相会談は、東アジア共同体の実現に向けて、3か国が協力を強化することで一致した。

Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada stressed the necessity of promoting regional economic partnerships and building cooperation in individual sectors, such as energy and environmental efforts, under the principle of "open regionalism." Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, who puts an East Asian community at the center of his diplomatic strategies based on the spirit of yu-ai or "fraternity," expressed the same view in a speech at the United Nations during his visit to the United States last week.
 岡田外相は、「開かれた地域主義」の原則の下、域内の経済連携やエネルギー、環境など個別の協力を積み重ねる考えを強調した。共同体構想を「友愛外交」の柱に据える鳩山首相も、訪米時の国連演説で同様の見解を表明した。

"Open regionalism" is based on a concept of regional cooperation that does not exclude specific countries, including the United States. It has been a policy of the Japanese government since former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi touted the creation of an East Asian community in 2002. The Hatoyama administration seems to be following in Koizumi's footsteps.
 「開かれた地域主義」は、米国など特定の国を排除した地域協力にはしない、というものだ。小泉政権が2002年に共同体構想の推進を掲げて以来の日本政府の方針であり、鳩山政権も、これを踏襲するということだろう。

===

Motives questioned

Nevertheless, there still are some in the United States who wonder about Hatoyama's real intention. There is little doubt that such questions are linked to Hatoyama's recent op-ed piece in a U.S. newspaper that criticized U.S.-led globalization and touched on the issue of creating a common Asian currency.
 にもかかわらず、米国には依然、首相の真意を測りかね、疑問を呈する声がある。米紙に掲載された首相の論文で、米国主導のグローバリズムへの批判やアジア共通通貨の発行に踏み込んだことが、その背景にあるのは間違いない。

It would be self-defeating for Japan to take on an active leadership role in promoting the concept of an East Asian community if it negatively influences the Japan-U.S. alliance. Hatoyama and Okada should assuage U.S. worries by sufficiently explaining the intent of the effort.
 日本が積極的に共同体構想の旗振り役を務める結果、日米同盟関係に悪影響を及ぼしては、本末転倒だ。首相と外相は、今後も米側の不安を払拭(ふっしょく)するための説明努力を尽くすべきである。

Discussing the idea of an East Asian community at a summit meeting with Chinese President Hu Jintao in New York last week, Hatoyama cited the example of energy cooperation between Germany and France leading to a wave of integration in Europe.
 首相は先の日中首脳会談で、東アジア共同体について、ドイツとフランスのエネルギー協力が欧州統合の流れにつながったことを引き合いに出した。

However, it is unreasonable to model an East Asian community after the European Union. East Asia is composed of various types of countries whose political frameworks differ from each other. Due to the threat of North Korean nuclear missile attacks and China's mounting military build-up, the security environment in East Asia is not as stable as that of Europe in the post-Cold War era.
 だが、欧州連合(EU)をモデルにするのは無理がある。東アジアは、政治体制の異なる多様な国からなる。北朝鮮の核ミサイルの脅威や中国の軍事的台頭などがあり、冷戦終結後の欧州のような安全保障環境は整っていない。

===

First step

To eventually create an East Asian community, it is appropriate to begin by strengthening regional economic cooperation.
 やはり、域内の経済連携を強化するアプローチが妥当だろう。

But among Japan, China and South Korea, discussion of free trade agreements and investment treaties have not made progress. South Korea has maintained a cautious stance on an FTA out of concern it might increase its trade deficit with Japan, while China also is hesitant about signing an investment treaty for fear of being forced to liberalize its investment regulations.
 ただ、日中韓をみても、自由貿易協定(FTA)や、その前提となる投資協定の話し合いは進んでいない。前者は対日貿易赤字の増大を懸念する韓国が、後者は投資自由化に消極的な中国が、慎重姿勢を崩していないためだ。

Japan's FTA negotiations with India and Australia also have stagnated. South Korea and India, which, along with China, has shown significant economic growth, signed an FTA in August. Japan's delayed start cannot be denied.
 インドや豪州とのFTA交渉も停滞している。特に、中国と並んで発展著しいインドとは、韓国が先月、協定署名にこぎつけ、日本の出遅れは否めない。

In October, a summit meeting among the leaders of Japan, China and South Korea and an East Asia Summit meeting are planned. Hatoyama and Okada should deepen discussions on strengthening economic cooperation in the region in a concrete manner.
 来月には日中韓首脳会談や東アジア首脳会議が予定されている。首相と外相は、具体的な経済連携の協議を深めるべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 30, 2009)
(2009年9月30日01時08分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月29日 (火)

社説:自民党新総裁 谷垣さんもチェンジを

(Mainichi Japan) September 29, 2009
New LDP leader Tanigaki faces tough task to rebuild, reform party
社説:自民党新総裁 谷垣さんもチェンジを

A tough road lies ahead for new Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) President Sadakazu Tanigaki. Elected on Monday to head the LDP, which suffered a crushing defeat in the Lower House election, the former finance minister faces the challenge of rebuilding the party under unprecedented adversity, with its very raison d'etre brought into question.
 いばらの道が待ち受ける。さきの衆院選で惨敗し野党に転落した自民党の新総裁に谷垣禎一元財務相が選ばれた。政権交代で自民党の存在意義すら問われるかつてない逆境の下、党の立て直しを迫られる。

If Tanigaki -- the innocuous and model student type -- thinks he can take back the reins of government with the LDP mostly unchanged, he's dreaming. The fact that the party was unable to gather two-thirds of regional votes is evidence of the public's doubts toward the LDP's approach to party reform. The LDP must review the policies it has had since its ruling-party era, and strive to establish itself as an effective opposition to the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ).
 無難で優等生的な印象の谷垣氏だが、昔ながらの自民党のまま政権復帰を目指すのであれば、幻想に過ぎない。地方票で3分の2を得られなかったことは、党改革の姿勢への疑問の反映だ。与党時代の党の政策を一から再点検し、民主党との対立軸の構築に努めなければならない。

Even though the LDP leadership election had the party's rebirth on the line, it sank into oblivion as the new government of Prime Minster Yukio Hatoyama gathered attention. Although this could be partially attributed to the LDP's fate as an opposition party, more importantly, it was because the party had not adequately engaged in any analysis of its defeat. Many mid-ranking party members refused to run for party president, and the three candidates who did run failed to attract the public's interest. The lack of enthusiasm for the election, even among regional party organizations, is a sign that the party's future is at risk.
 党再生をかけた総裁選のはずが、鳩山政権が脚光を浴びる中、すっかり埋没した。野党に転じた事情もあるが、惨敗を真剣に総括する過程が決定的に不足していた。中堅議員の多くが出馬を見送り、候補の顔ぶれも国民的関心を呼ばなかった。地方組織も含め盛り上がりに欠けた様子は、党の前途の厳しさを物語った。

Ultimately, what the arguments put forth by the three candidates -- Tanigaki, Former Senior Vice Justice Minister Taro Kono and former Parliamentary Vice Foreign Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura -- revealed was that the party remains divided on the cause of its general election defeat. While Tanigaki pushed for a review of structural reforms led by former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, Kono proposed further reforms, calling for a break from factional politics and the transfer of power to a new generation of party members. Tanigaki's support from legislators and regional voters and his resulting victory reflected the strong negativity harbored by party members toward Koizumi-era reforms.
 結局、河野太郎元副法相、西村康稔前外務政務官も含む3候補の主張から浮かんだのは、敗因総括をめぐる党内論議の混迷だった。小泉構造改革見直しに軸足を置く谷垣氏に対し、河野氏はむしろ改革継続を強調、派閥主導の古い体質を糾弾し、世代交代を前面に掲げた。議員票、地方票を通じての谷垣氏の勝利は、小泉改革の負の部分が党内に強く意識されていることの反映だろう。

Still, one cannot help but feel uneasy about what lies ahead for the party and its new party leader. First of all, there is the challenge of building a relationship of effective opposition with the DPJ. Tanigaki has argued for a review of "small government" policy, but criticizes the new government's policies as mere handouts. Without a detailed discussion on what the LDP wants to change and what it wants to keep the same -- including the issue of consumption tax -- it won't be able to compose anything more than a vague manifesto.
 とはいえ、新総裁や党の前途には不安を感じざるを得ない。まず、問われるのは民主党への対立軸の構築だ。谷垣氏は「小さな政府」の見直しを主張するが、一方で新政権の政策をばらまきと批判する。構造改革のどの部分を改め、どこを維持するのか。消費税問題の扱いも含めて詰めなければ、いつまでも抽象的なマニフェストしか作れまい。

Some say that the policies put forth by Tanigaki, considered a liberal, are hard to differentiate from those of Hatoyama. In Diet sessions and other forums, it will be important that he clearly illustrates the differences between LDP and DPJ policies while cooperating when appropriate.
 政策的にリベラルと目される谷垣氏には鳩山政権との違いが見えにくい、との指摘もある。国会での対応など、協力すべきは協力しつつ政策の違いを示す努力が必要だ。

It is questionable how far Tanigaki will go in terms of party reform. His greatest supporters in the presidential election were those who are favorable toward party factions and are not receptive to rapid change, including the generational transfer of power.
 党改革をどこまで実行できるかも疑問符がつく。今回、谷垣氏を推す勢力の中心となったのは派閥を肯定し、世代交代など急速な変化を好まない勢力だった。

Tanigaki's slogan of "let's do it together" as a call to build a united front could also prove to be a pitfall to reform. If the new party head curries favor with party factions and senior party members, the public will give up on him early. He will have to be bold in selecting candidates for next summer's Upper House election, and refuse to act on precedent.
 持論である「みんなでやろうぜ」の挙党体制の構築も、党改革を怠る口実となりかねない。派閥や長老の顔色をうかがうようでは国民から早々に見放されよう。来夏の参院選の候補選定も、前例にとらわれない大胆さが必要だ。

Although the latest LDP presidential election was lacking in pizzazz, the fact that the party refrained from putting on a mere popularity contest by rounding up high-profile candidates is a sign of progress. On the other hand, a mild-mannered party president lacking in leadership skills will not be able to weather the storm that is approaching.
 地味なイメージの新総裁だが、今回、選挙の顔となる人気者探しに党が踊らなかったのは、ささやかな前進でもある。とはいえ、無難さに走り、リーダーシップを欠くようでは到底、乗り切れない。

Tanigaki, too, must change if he is to succeed.
谷垣氏も、変わらなければならない。

毎日新聞 2009年9月29日 0時07分

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谷垣自民党総裁 解党的出直しの先頭に立て

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 29, 2009)
Tanigaki must initiate LDP's transformation
谷垣自民党総裁 解党的出直しの先頭に立て(9月29日付・読売社説)

Former Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki has been picked as the new president of the main opposition Liberal Democratic Party.
 野党・自民党の新総裁に、谷垣禎一・元財務相が就任した。

The new LDP leader's eventual goal is to regain control of the government. To do so, the LDP must first carry out root-and-branch reform of the party so it can start from the beginning again.
 新総裁の最終的な目標は、政権奪還にある。
 そのためには、まず、党の解党的な出直しが避けられない。

At the same time, the LDP should adopt a cooperative stance by working with the ruling Democratic Party of Japan on important policies concerning matters of national interest and make efforts to realize them, not merely criticize the DPJ-led administration from the standpoint of an opposition party.
同時に、野党として政権を批判するだけでなく、国益に絡む重要政策については、民主党と協議した上で実現するという柔軟な姿勢が求められよう。

Voting and vote-counting for the LDP presidential election were held Monday. Veteran lawmaker Tanigaki beat his two younger contenders--former Senior Vice Justice Minister Taro Kono and former Parliamentary Vice Foreign Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura.
 自民党総裁選が投開票され、ベテランの谷垣氏が、河野太郎・元法務副大臣と西村康稔・前外務政務官の中堅若手候補を下した。

Tanigaki faces a heavy responsibility in bringing about the rebirth of the LDP after its crushing defeat in the recent House of Representatives election.
 谷垣氏は、先の衆院選惨敗後の自民党の再生に向けて、重い責任を負ったといえる。

Tanigaki's victory likely came as a result of the fact that both LDP Diet lawmakers and rank-and-file party members highly evaluate his experience in important cabinet and party posts, the sense of stability he projects and his mild-mannered personality.
 谷垣氏の勝利は、内閣や党の要職を歴任した経験と安定感、温厚な人柄が、議員、党員の双方から評価された結果とみられる。

Tanigaki asserted that the LDP should take a whole-party approach that he described as "a baseball team determined to win by employing all the players' strengths in a unified manner." Kono dismissed Tanigaki's analogy, severely criticizing the party's factional politics, but his harsh approach--demanding the expulsion of faction leaders--won little understanding.
 河野氏は、谷垣氏が主張した挙党一致の「全員野球」を否定し、派閥政治を手厳しく批判した。だが、派閥領袖の退場を求めるなど性急な「排除」の論理は、多くの理解を得られなかった。

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LDP should take fight to DPJ

The Diet is the main battlefield of an opposition party.
 野党の主戦場は国会にある。

Tanigaki has stressed that the LDP must ensure the ruling parties fulfill their responsibilities, and that it must come up with well-conceived policies and not lose heart. At the same time, he said the LDP will have no future if it merely finds fault with the ruling parties.
 谷垣氏は、「錬磨した政策で与党を厳しく追及する。気迫を失ってはいけない」と強調してきた。同時に「あら探しで終わるようではだめだ」とも言っている。

Tanigaki is right. The LDP should trade verbal blows toe-to-toe with the ruling parties on tax and financial issues, including on the issues of a hike in the consumption tax and national security. The party should also highlight contradictions in the DPJ's policies and present responsible counterproposals.
 その通りだろう。消費税率引き上げなど税財政や安全保障で正面から論戦を挑む。民主党の政策の矛盾点をあぶり出す一方、責任ある対案をあわせて提示する。

If LDP lawmakers, young and old alike, question ruling party members in Diet deliberations from such a point of view, the party will recover its vitality. Tanigaki himself should take the lead in setting a good example in Diet deliberations, including party leader debates with Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama.
 そんな観点から「老壮青」の自民党議員が質問に立つことは、党の活力を引き出すことにつながるのではないか。谷垣総裁も、鳩山首相との党首討論をはじめ国会論戦で、範を示すべきだ。

Reconstructing the party will be no easy task. Personnel management and national elections, including the House of Councillors election to be held next summer, will be the first hurdles for Tanigaki.
 党の再建は容易ではない。党人事や来夏の参院選をはじめとした国政選挙が最初の関門になる。

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Winning urban vote key

The fact that Kono and Nishimura, who both asserted the necessity for a generational change in the presidential election, gained a measure of support may signify a desire within the party for a drastic change in the system of allocating party executive posts. To give the party's top echelon a makeover, young and middle-aged lawmakers should be appointed to senior posts.
 総裁選で、世代交代を訴えた河野、西村両氏が一定の支持を得たことは、党役員の大幅刷新を求める党内世論の表れともいえよう。若手・中堅の積極的登用など清新な布陣が必要だ。

In the next upper house election, the LDP must entrust the party leadership with decision-making power and rethink its strategies, including on candidate selection.
 参院選では、党執行部に権限を集中させ、候補者も含め戦略を練り直すことが迫られそうだ。

As for the LDP's election strategy, if the party focuses on the rural vote, its prospects will remain dim. The important thing is for it to come up with policies that strike a chord with urban residents in the prime of life. It is indispensable for the LDP to present a clear vision to counter the DPJ's, such as its own growth strategy and a new model for the ideal shape of the nation.
 選挙対策も、地方を重視するだけでは、展望は開けない。大事なのは、都市部の働き盛りの世代などから共感を得られる政策を打ち出すことだろう。成長戦略や新たな国家像の提示など、民主党との明確な対抗軸も欠かせない。

Convincing voters that the LDP has changed would be a step toward a return to power.
 自民党は変わった、と有権者に受け止めてもらう。それが政権復帰に向けての第一歩になる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 29, 2009)
(2009年9月29日01時04分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月22日 (火)

鳩山経済政策 安定成長への道筋を示せ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 22, 2009)
DPJ must point way to economic growth
鳩山経済政策 安定成長への道筋を示せ(9月22日付・読売社説)

How does the new Cabinet led by Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama intend to get the nation's economy on a recovery path leading to stable growth? The Hatoyama administration has yet to come up with a discernible strategy for economic growth.
 景気を着実に回復させて、安定した経済成長にどうつなげるか。鳩山内閣の経済成長戦略がいまひとつ見えてこない。

When asked at his inaugural press conference what was the top-priority task for his Cabinet, Hatoyama mentioned measures to support household budgets, including child-rearing allowances. But he did not outline any strategies for mid- and long-term economic growth. The nation's economy, whose future shape remains unclear, is a matter of concern for the public. We hope the government will draw up a "road map" to put the economy on a stable growth track.
 鳩山首相は就任記者会見で最優先課題を問われ、子ども手当など当面の家計支援策を挙げた。しかし、中長期の経済成長をにらんだ戦略は語らなかった。
 日本経済の将来像がおぼろげでは、不安が残る。成長軌道に乗せる道筋を明確に示してほしい。

===

Jobs need to be protected
 ◆雇用確保を最優先に◆

The nation's economy has just pulled out of a nosedive. But if the government fails to maintain control of the economy, we fear there could be another economic downturn.
 日本経済は、急降下からやっと水平飛行に戻ったが、操縦を誤れば再び失速の恐れがある。

The Hatoyama Cabinet is tasked with implementing necessary policies at a time when the nation has arrived at a critical political moment. First of all, the government should try to improve the employment situation, given that the jobless rate rose to an all-time high of 5.7 percent in July. The number of jobless people grew by about 1 million from a year earlier, of whom two out of three lost jobs after being let go by their companies, including through restructuring programs.
 鳩山内閣は、大事な場面で政策のかじ取りを担う。まず、失業率が5・7%と、過去最悪になっている雇用の改善を図るべきだ。
 失業者は1年前より100万人増え、うち3人に2人はリストラなど会社の都合で職を失った。

Among the employment policies the ruling Democratic Party of Japan touted as election campaign pledges, the government must quickly implement measures to alleviate the pain of unemployment, including establishing a system to support job-seekers by providing them with allowances while they undergo job training. As the number of job offers for new graduates also is decreasing, we hope the government will consider measurers to prevent a recurrence of the "ice age" for employment that occurred in the 1990s.
 公約した雇用政策のうち、職業訓練中に手当を支給する求職者支援制度の創設など、失業の痛みを和らげる施策の具体化を急がねばならない。新卒の求人も激減している。就職氷河期の再来を防ぐ手立ても考えてもらいたい。

The DPJ's employment policies have some worrisome features. Under the current circumstances, in which even regular employees are being fired under companies' restructuring programs, if the government imposes a basic ban on the dispatch of temporary workers to the manufacturing industry, wouldn't the number of jobless people increase further?
 民主党の雇用政策には気がかりな項目もある。正社員にもリストラが広がる中、製造業の派遣労働などを原則禁止すれば、失業者がさらに増えないか。

If the government quickly raises the minimum wage, midsize and small firms could be driven into a corner and accelerate personnel cutbacks. Although efforts to abolish societal disparities are important, very careful consideration must be given to whether now is the right time and situation to implement measures for that purpose.
 最低賃金も性急に引き上げれば中小企業が追い詰められ、人員整理が加速しかねない。格差是正は大切だが、実行できる環境かどうか、見極めが肝要だ。

Six million workers in the nation are surplus to requirements, according to a government estimate. Every possible step for economic recovery should be taken so "in-house unemployment" does not become real unemployment.
 企業が抱える過剰雇用が600万人にのぼるとする政府の推計もある。「企業内失業」が実際の失業とならないよう、景気回復に万全を期さねばならない。

===

Austerity moves premature
 ◆危うい補正予算見直し◆

The nation's gross domestic product posted positive growth in the April-June period, marking the first expansion in five quarters.
 実質国内総生産(GDP)は4~6月期、5四半期ぶりにプラス成長を回復した。

But one of the main factors behind the GDP rise was increased consumer spending due to the effects of the government's pump-priming measures, such as tax breaks and subsidies for the purchase of eco-friendly vehicles and the introduction of the eco point system aimed at boosting sales of eco-friendly electrical appliances. The recovery of the nation's exports due to the strengthening of overseas economies also played a major role in the GDP expansion. The sustainability of the nation's economic recovery is weak, therefore.
 とはいえ、主な要因はエコカー減税や省エネ家電のエコポイントの効果などで増えた消費と、海外経済の持ち直しによる輸出の回復で、持続力は頼りない。

The lack of demand in the nation's economy is equivalent to about 40 trillion yen annually. Unless the government supports domestic demand with public works projects and other measures, it is feared that the effects of its economic policies could be limited in the next year, and the economy could lose momentum.
 日本経済の需要不足は、年換算で40兆円もある。公共事業などで内需を支えないと、来年にかけて政策効果が薄れ、景気が息切れする懸念がある。

But the Hatoyama Cabinet intends to freeze part of the supplementary budget compiled by the Cabinet led by former Prime Minister Taro Aso and use it to fund policies the DPJ pledged to carry out in its manifesto.
 ところが、鳩山内閣は、麻生内閣が編成した補正予算の一部を凍結する方針だ。公約した政策の財源に充てるためという。

As things stand, it is possible that projects funded by the supplementary budget will fizzle out in the latter half of this fiscal year. A belt-tightening policy that puts priority on securing financial resources is undesirable in that it could stall an economic recovery.
 今年度の後半に政策の空白が生じかねない。景気腰折れの引き金をひくような、財源優先の緊縮政策は好ましくない。

===

Overhaul economy structure
 ◆内需産業をどう育てる◆

Along with measures to deal with the economic crisis, the government also should not forget to establish a foundation for economic growth.
 危機対応と並行し、成長の基盤作りも忘れてはならない。

First of all, the nation's economic structure, which is overreliant on foreign demand, needs to be reformed.
 まず、行き過ぎた外需頼みの経済構造を改める必要がある。

A plan formulated by the Hatoyama Cabinet to expand domestic demand, which includes the provision of child-rearing allowances, appears to be aimed at weaning the nation off external demand.
 鳩山内閣が、子ども手当などで内需拡大を図るというのも、外需依存を弱める狙いだろう。

But domestic demand as a whole will not expand merely by using part of the national budget to boost household budgets. If child-rearing allowances are provided while people continue to feel anxious about their daily lives, many of them will save the money, and the policy's effects will be weakened.
 だが、予算配分を家計に手厚くするだけで内需全体のパイは大きくなるまい。生活不安が強い中で手当を給付すれば、多くが貯蓄に回り、効果も低くなろう。

To alleviate worries about the future and increase people's disposable income, it is indispensable to improve the pension and other social security systems, and draw up a blueprint for securing financial resources for that purpose. The government should quickly begin to discuss whether the consumption tax, a stable financial resource, should be raised, thus boosting the effects of the provision of child-rearing allowances.
 将来の不安を和らげ、収入が消費に回る割合を増やすには、年金など社会保障の充実が肝要で、その財源確保にも道筋をつけねばならない。安定財源と期待される消費税の引き上げ論議を早く始めることは、子ども手当の効果も高めるのではないか。

Fostering potential new industries also is important. Areas in which Japan's technology is a world leader, including the environmental and energy-saving fields, could foster promising businesses. We hope the government will encourage technological innovation that leads to a carbon-free society.
 成長性のある新たな産業の育成も重要だ。環境・省エネなど日本が得意とする分野は有望だ。脱炭素社会をリードするため、技術革新を促してほしい。

The rapidly aging society has created an increase in demand in the medical and nursing care sectors. Support measures will be needed to make these sectors primary industries that will create employment and growth.
 高齢化時代に需要が高まる医療や介護分野は、雇用と成長をもたらす基幹産業に育てるためのテコ入れが求められよう。

But even if the government successfully proceeds with a shift from foreign to domestic demand, it will take some time for the twin engines of domestic and external demand to work in a balanced manner.
 ただし、外需から内需への移行を進めても、内外需の「双発エンジン」がバランスよく回り出すには、かなり時間を要する。

As a nation with limited natural resources to grow its economy, Japan should make profits on the back of foreign demand and invest them. In this regard, a focus of attention is whether Japan will be able to respond to the demands of emerging markets, such as those in Asia, which are expected to grow rapidly.
 天然資源に乏しい日本が成長するには、外需で利益を稼ぎ、それを活用していかねばならない。
 このため急成長が期待できるアジアなど新興市場の需要を取り込めるかどうかが焦点となる。

While sales of low-price electrical appliances and other products made in China and South Korea are rising globally, highly functional, high-priced Japan-made products are not selling so well. To survive this cutthroat competition, Japanese makers should lower the costs of their products and boost their competitiveness.
 電気製品などは、中国や韓国などの低価格品が世界で販売を伸ばす一方、高機能だが価格も高い日本製品は苦戦気味だ。勝ち抜くにはコストを下げ、競争力を高めねばならない。

There are growing voices in economic circles for a reduction in corporate tax, which is high compared with that of other developed nations.
 このため経済界には、国際的に高い法人税率の引き下げなどを求める声が多い。

But the DPJ's manifesto contains election pledges that put burdens on companies, including reducing the country's greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from 1990 levels by 2020. If companies are pushed to the wall, they could resort to restructuring programs and wage cutbacks, and households eventually would have to pay the price for the government's policies.
 しかし民主党の公約は、温室効果ガスの「25%削減」をはじめ、逆に企業に負担を強いるものが目立つ。企業を追い込めば、リストラや賃金カットで、やがて家計にもツケが回る恐れがある。

We also are anxious about assertions by Finance Minister Hirohisa Fujii and other DPJ members that the yen should be allowed to appreciate. A rapid rise of the yen would deal a blow to export industries.
 藤井財務相ら民主党内の「円高容認論」も気がかりだ。急激な円高は輸出産業に打撃となる。

The DPJ's words and deeds are now interpreted by the public differently from when it was an opposition party. The ruling party should not roil the market with careless remarks.
 野党時代とは受け止められ方が違う。不用意な発言で市場を混乱させてはならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 22, 2009)
(2009年9月22日01時13分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月21日 (月)

敬老の日 安心できる超高齢社会に

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 21, 2009)
Assuage people's fears over hyper-aging society
敬老の日 安心できる超高齢社会に(9月21日付・読売社説)

Respect-for-the-Aged Day falls Monday, a few days after the administration of Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama took office.
 鳩山政権が発足して間もないきょう、敬老の日を迎えた。

This nation is aging faster than any other in the world.
日本の高齢化は、世界に類を見ないスピードで進行している。

In 1966, when Respect-for-the-Aged Day became a national holiday, the average life span of Japanese males was 68 and that of females 73. Currently, men live an average of 79 years and women 86 years, and life spans are bound to continue to lengthen. We live in an era in which about 1.3 million, or one in 100, of the nation's population are aged 90 or older.
 敬老の日が祝日となった1966年、日本人の平均寿命は男が68歳、女は73歳だった。それが今では男79歳、女86歳となり、年々延び続けている。100人に1人、約130万人が90歳以上という時代である。

Of course, graying itself is not something to feel anxious about. It is gratifying that many people live long.
 無論、高齢化それ自体は憂うべきものではない。多くの人が長寿であるのは喜ばしいことだ。

Nevertheless, our hyper-aging society tends to be described in gloomy terms, no doubt due to concern that the social security system is unsustainable.
 にもかかわらず、超高齢社会が暗いイメージで語られがちなのはなぜか。社会保障制度が十分に対応できていないからだろう。

To dispel such anxieties, the new administration faces a mountain of tasks related to reconstructing and maintaining the pension system and medical and nursing care services, all of which are vital to support elderly people's lives.
 新政権はこの不安を払拭(ふっしょく)するために、老後の生活を支える年金、医療、介護をどう再構築し、維持していくのか。山積する課題に取り組まねばならない。

===

DPJ must make right decision

The first daunting challenge facing the new administration is overhauling the medical insurance system for elderly people.
 まず、直面する難題は高齢者医療である。

At a press conference he gave after assuming his post, Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Akira Nagatsuma reiterated that the medical insurance system for those aged 75 and older would be abolished. He did not say when the current system would be scrapped. As for a system that would replace the existing one, Nagatsuma said it would be designed to reflect realities. This was a pragmatic choice.
 長妻厚生労働相は就任会見で、改めて「後期高齢者医療制度は廃止する」と表明した。ただし廃止時期には触れず、その後については「現状を把握した上で制度設計する」とした。これは現実的な選択と言えよう。

The medical insurance system for those aged 75 and over was crafted to resolve the severe strain that the health insurance system for elderly people had come under. It clarified the burden that working generations must shoulder to pay the medical expenses of those aged 75 and older. It also removed the disparities in premiums that existed within individual prefectures by setting up prefectural-run insurers.
 後期高齢者医療制度は、老人保健制度の行き詰まりを打開する目的で作られた。75歳以上の人の医療費を現役世代がどれだけ負担するかを明確にし、県単位の保険者を作って保険料格差を縮めた。

Although it is true that the current system is flawed and was never explained properly, the emotional backlash over its name--its reference to elderly people aged 75 and older as koki koreisha (late-stage elderly people)--and other elements predominated during discussions over the new system, with the result that it was never discussed in a calm manner.
 新制度には様々な欠陥や説明不足もあったが、呼称などに対する感情的反発が先行し、冷静な議論が行われたとは言い難い。

When the DPJ was an opposition party, it was all right to press the government on the system's defects and parrot the slogan "Abolish the new system immediately and reinstate the old medical insurance system for the elderly."
But since it has become the ruling party and taken over the reins of government, it will not be forgiven if it makes a decision that could invite confusion.
 野党なら政策の欠点だけを追及し、「ただちに廃止して老健制度に戻せ」と唱えればよかったが、政府・与党となったからには、いたずらに混乱を招くだけの選択は許されまい。

===

Have sales tax fund welfare

Weighing up the merits and demerits of the medical insurance system for those aged 75 and older and then reconstructing it would not mean breaking the DPJ's election campaign pledge to abolish the existing system.
 後期高齢者医療制度の利点と欠点を適切に評価し、発展的に再構築することは、「現制度を廃止する」との公約に反しない。
We hope the DPJ formulates a blueprint for the medical insurance system for the elderly calmly and constructively.
冷静かつ建設的に、高齢者医療の将来像を練ってもらいたい。

In doing so, if increases in health insurance premiums and over-the-counter payments by patients are seen to have reached their limit, there is no option but to increase the injection of public money. That is true not only in the case of medical services, but also for pension and nursing care insurance systems.
 その場合、保険料や窓口負担が限界と見るならば、公費の投入を増やすしかない。医療に限らず、年金も介護保険も同様だ。

But can the DPJ fund measures for elderly people without increasing taxes at a time when securing financial resources for other new policies, such as the monthly child-rearing allowance, is in question?
 だが、子ども手当など他の新規施策だけでも財源確保に疑問符がつく中で、増税なしに高齢者施策の財源は見いだせるだろうか。

If the consumption tax is transformed into a social security tax so that financial resources can be properly secured, the government will have more choices in formulating policies for this hyper-aging society. The new administration should make a decision on the medical insurance system for elderly people without delay.
 消費税を社会保障税とし、きちんと財源を確保すれば、超高齢時代の施策は選択肢が広がる。新政権は一日も早く決断すべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 21, 2009)
(2009年9月21日01時12分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月20日 (日)

鳩山外交始動 日米同盟基軸を行動で示せ

Words alone not enough for Japan-U.S. alliance
The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 20, 2009)
鳩山外交始動 日米同盟基軸を行動で示せ(9月20日付・読売社説)

Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama will leave for the United States on Monday, where he plans to attend a series of international conferences that will discuss such important global issues as climate change, nuclear arms reduction, nuclear nonproliferation, the world economy and international finance.
 鳩山首相があす、米国に向けて出発する。
 今回の訪米では、気候変動、核軍縮・不拡散、国際経済・金融など世界規模の重要課題を討議する国際会議が目白押しだ。

Hatoyama also is scheduled to hold summit meetings with U.S. President Barack Obama as well the leaders of countries including Britain, China, France, India, Russia and South Korea.
 オバマ米大統領をはじめ、中国、韓国、英国、フランス、ロシア、インドなど各国首脳との会談も予定されている。

These planned meetings indicate the keen interest that world leaders have in the diplomatic stance of Hatoyama, who has effected a change in government.
 首脳会談が相次いで行われる背景には、政権交代を実現した鳩山首相の外交姿勢に強い関心が抱かれていることがあろう。

 ◆継続性重視アピールを◆
During the campaign for last month's House of Representatives election, Hatoyama stressed that "continuity is important for diplomacy." During his U.S. visit, we hope he will assert to the world that there will be no fundamental changes in this country's foreign policies following the recent change in power. This means maintaining the Japan-U.S. alliance, respecting the principle of international cooperation and promoting the free trade system.
 首相は選挙中、「外交は継続性が重要だ」と指摘している。日米同盟の堅持、国際協調主義、自由貿易体制の推進といった日本外交の骨格は、政権が交代しても何ら変わらないことを積極的に発信してもらいたい。

===

No room for misinterpretation

It is particularly important for Hatoyama to convey clearly to the United States that the Japan-U.S. alliance will continue to be the axis of this nation's foreign policy.
 中でも重要なのは、日米同盟が引き続き外交の基軸であることを米側に明確に伝えることだ。

A Hatoyama op-ed article carried on the Web site of a U.S. newspaper late last month was seen to criticize U.S.-led globalism, and was thus construed as being "anti-U.S.," stirring controversy in Washington.
 先月末に米紙に掲載された首相の論文は、米国主導のグローバリズムを批判するなど、「反米的」と受け止められ、米国内で波紋を呼んだ。

Hatoyama later said his true opinions were not conveyed accurately.
 首相は、真意が伝わらなかったと釈明している。

It is important for the prime minister to dispel such concern during his U.S. visit by giving a full account of his stance in his own words.
今回の訪米を機会に、自らの口できちんと説明し、米側の懸念を払拭(ふっしょく)することが大事だ。

To this end, Hatoyama also must show that actions speak louder than words. He should, for example, clarify the kind of assistance Japan plans to provide to Afghanistan--a country at the forefront of the "war against terror."
 そのためには、「言葉」だけではなく、具体的に裏付ける「行動」を示さなければなるまい。
 例えば、「テロとの戦い」の最前線国家アフガニスタンに対して日本はどんな支援をするのか。

If Afghanistan once again becomes a haunt for international terrorist organizations, global peace and security could be quickly destabilized.
 アフガンが再び、国際テロ組織の巣窟(そうくつ)と化せば、世界の平和と安全は一気に不安定化する。

During a phone conversation earlier this month, Obama's asked Hatoyama for Japan's help in sweeping militants out of Afghanistan--apparently prompted by the U.S. president's recognition of the dire situation in the war-torn country.
オバマ大統領が今月初めの電話会談で、首相に「アフガンの過激派の掃討」への協力を求めたのも、そんな厳しい認識からだろう。

 ◆問われるアフガン支援◆
If Japan suspends the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean--as the Democratic Party of Japan pledged to do during campaigning for the recent election--the United States would conclude that Japan was withdrawing from the fight against terrorism. This could cause a serious rift in the Japan-U.S. relationship.
 民主党が選挙で公約した通り、日本がインド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動を中止すれば、「テロとの戦いから離脱した」と受け止められ、日米関係に亀裂が生じる恐れがある。

As an alternative measure, Hatoyama has said he would reinforce civilian activities in Afghanistan. However, Japan has been engaging in a range of activities in the country, including the provision of agricultural assistance and the construction of schools.
 首相は、代わりにアフガン本土での文民活動を強化する考えだが、日本はすでに農業支援や学校建設など様々な活動に取り組んでいる。

Is Hatoyama's plan really a feasible alternative? We believe he should explore the possibility of continuing the refueling mission.
代替策になるのか。
 首相はやはり、給油活動継続の可能性を探るべきだろう。

===

Clarify nuclear stance

The prime minister has stressed his intention to realize a unified Asian currency and build an East Asia community. This has given rise to concerns in the United States that the new Japanese government's diplomatic policy is based on "independence from the United States and better regional relations in Asia."
 首相は、アジア共通通貨の実現や「東アジア共同体」の構築を目指すと強調している。このため、米国内には、「鳩山外交の基本は『脱米入亜』ではないか」と不安視する向きもある。

Up until now Japan's basic stance has been to offer cooperation in specific fields within a given region--such as liberalization of trade and investment and help with environmental measures--but has not engaged in regional cooperation that has excluded certain countries.
 これまでの日本政府の基本姿勢は、域内の貿易投資自由化や環境など個別分野の協力から始め、特定の国を排除する形の地域協力はしない、というものだ。

The prime minister has indicated that he favors this tack. We believe Hatoyama does not want his policy stance to be taken to mean that he undervalues the Japan-U.S. alliance. He should thus make a point of carefully explaining that he has no intention of trying to distance Japan from the United States.
 首相も同様の見解を示しており、日米同盟軽視と受け取られるのは本意ではあるまい。米国離れを志向しているのではないことを、丁寧に説明すべきだろう。

Regarding the issues of nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation, Obama has called for a world free of nuclear weapons.
 核軍縮・不拡散に関し、オバマ大統領は、「核兵器のない世界」を提唱している。

How can the international community pressure North Korea into abandoning its nuclear development program? What steps can be taken to persuade China to reduce the number of its nuclear weapons and disclose information on its military might, such as how many nuclear warheads it presently holds?
 北朝鮮の核開発をどのようにして断念させるか。中国に核弾頭数などの情報を開示させ、核兵器を削減させるにはどうすべきか。

One of the DPJ's manifesto pledges was to realize a nuclear-free Northeast Asia. However, if concrete measures are not thrashed out to tackle this issue, the plan is mere pie in the sky.
 首相が政権公約で示した「北東アジア非核化」構想も、こうした問題への具体的取り組みを欠いては、何の説得力もない。

Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada is scheduled to accompany the prime minister to the United States. During a press conference held after he had taken up his new post, Okada reiterated his desire for the United States to renounce the preemptive use of nuclear arms.
 首相と一緒に訪米する岡田外相は、就任の記者会見で、米国は核の先制不使用を明示すべきだとの持論を改めて示した。

The United States' nuclear umbrella is the only protection Japan has in the face of the threat posed by North Korea's nuclear missiles. In this regard, we believe the idea of renouncing preemptive nuclear attacks neglects the regional security environment, and could seriously harm this nation's peace and security.
 日本にとって、北朝鮮の核ミサイルの脅威に対する唯一の対抗手段は、米国の「核の傘」だ。地域の安保環境を無視した先制不使用論は、日本の平和と安全を著しく害することになる。

Preaching one's own philosophy is fine if you are a member of the opposition bloc. However, as Okada is now this country's foreign minister, stating a view that differs from that of the prime minister creates an impression of confusion within the government and ruins Japan's credibility overseas.
 野党時代なら持論を唱えても問題にはならない。だが、外相として首相と異なる見解を述べれば、政府が混乱している印象を与え、対外的な信用を損ねる。

We urge Hatoyama and Okada to bear in mind Japan's diplomatic policies and discuss carefully--prior to their departure for the United States--the positions they intend to take during the talks with world leaders.
 首相と外相は、これまでの日本外交の基本をしっかりと踏まえ、一連の会談に臨む対処方針について、出発する前に十分練り合わせてほしい。

===

Climate pledge conditional

 ◆25%削減の前提も説け◆
On the climate change issue, Hatoyama has announced that Japan will aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from 1990 levels by 2020.
 気候変動問題では、首相は、2020年までに1990年比で25%の温室効果ガス排出削減を目指す考えを表明している。

European countries hold this pledge in high esteem, but this likely is because they want to make Japan stick to its promises. As such, we should not take their enthusiasm purely at face value.
 欧州各国は高く評価するが、日本の立場が後退しないよう布石を打っているのだろう。額面通り受け止めるわけにはいかない。

Hatoyama also has said that other major countries must agree to make "ambitious" reduction targets as a "precondition" for Japan's emissions-cut goal. The pledge to reduce emissions by 25 percent should not be allowed to take on a life of its own. The prime minister should stress the conditional elements of his pledge at the U.N. summit on climate change in New York.
 首相は、「すべての主要国の参加」が前提とも述べている。「25%削減」が独り歩きしては困る。会議では、あくまで前提条件付きであることを強調すべきだ。

International conferences and summit meetings are the arenas in which world leaders strike bargains while keeping a strong eye on their own national interests. Our new prime minister and foreign minister should stay focused during these occasions, and be careful about making promises or remarks before the international community that could harm this nation's interests.
 国際会議や首脳会談は、各国首脳がそれぞれの国益を主張し、駆け引きを演じる場である。首相と外相は、国益を害するような国際約束や発言をしないよう、気を引き締めて臨むべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 20, 2009)
(2009年9月20日01時19分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月19日 (土)

自民総裁選告示 政権奪還が目指せる党首を

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 19, 2009)
LDP needs leader who can rule roost
自民総裁選告示 政権奪還が目指せる党首を(9月19日付・読売社説)

The Liberal Democratic Party officially announced Friday the date of its presidential election. This will be a golden opportunity for the former ruling party to restart from scratch after its historic defeat in the recent House of Representatives election.
 総選挙惨敗を受けた自民党の出直し総裁選が告示された。

Former Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki, former Senior Vice Justice Minister Taro Kono and Yasutoshi Nishimura, former parliamentary vice foreign minister, have filed their candidacies for the election.
 谷垣禎一・元財務相、河野太郎・元法務副大臣、西村康稔(やすとし)・前外務政務官の3氏が立候補した。

The party has decided that votes will be cast and counted on Sept. 28. We hope the three candidates will use the time available to tell party members in plain language just how they plan to reform the party--and what kind of bitter medicine the LDP will have to swallow during the reform process. They must demonstrate they possess the leadership needed to help the party overcome the biggest crisis in its history.
 28日の投開票日まで、党の抜本改革の具体的な工程表と、改革に伴う“痛み”の大きさを率直に説明し、結党以来の危機を乗り越える指導力を持っていることを示してもらいたい。

Former Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Yoichi Masuzoe, who was considered a top contender to succeed former Prime Minister Taro Aso, and former Construction and Transport Minister Nobuteru Ishihara, who ran in last autumn's LDP presidential election, announced earlier they would not throw their hats in the ring.
 麻生前首相の後継に本命視された舛添要一・前厚生労働相や、昨秋の総裁選に出馬した石原伸晃・元国土交通相らは、早々と不出馬を宣言した。

Some observers believe that Masuzoe and Ishihara decided not to run this time because, even if elected, the next LDP president could not become prime minister as there is no prospect of the party returning to power any time soon.
 政権への早期復帰のめどが立たず、「首相になれない総裁」で終わる可能性が高いとみて、今回は見送ったとの見方もある。

===

Might not be a 'next time'

However, the party is not in a situation where it can optimistically assume there will be a "next time."
 自民党は今、「次がある」などと楽観できる状況ではない。

The only other time the LDP found itself booted into the opposition was when the administration of Morihiro Hosokawa was launched in 1993. However, the LDP returned to the ruling bloc about 10 months later. At that time, the party was the largest force in both Diet chambers.
 1993年の細川政権誕生で野党に転落した時は、約10か月で政権復帰を果たしたが、当時は衆参両院とも第1党の座にあった。

The situation is completely different today: The Democratic Party of Japan is the strongest presence in both houses.
今回とは状況がまったく異なる。

Six prefectures including Niigata Prefecture have no LDP representative in the lower house. Iwate and two other prefectures have no LDP member in either Diet house. It is no stretch of the imagination to assume that pro-LDP industry organizations and local assembly members will gradually start leaning toward the DPJ and eventually become loyal supporters of the current ruling party.
 新潟など6県は衆院議員が1人もいなくなり、岩手など3県は国会議員がゼロだ。業界団体や地方議員が徐々に民主党になびいて、自民党から離反していく事態も十分予想される。

The LDP increased the number of votes given to representatives of prefectural chapters for the upcoming presidential election to 300 from the previous election's 141. It also will hold open debate meetings across the country. These measures reflect the party's recognition that there will not be a "next time" if its Diet members, local assembly members and rank-and-filers are not on the same page when it comes to rebuilding the party.
 地方票の割合を増やし、各地で公開討論会を催すのも、国会議員、地方議員、一般党員が一丸となって再建に取り組まなければ、「次」はないとの認識からだろう。

The three candidates said they will end the huge influence that factions hold over party management and personnel matters, and that incumbents will be given priority in the selection of election candidates. However, the necessity of such changes has been pointed out each time the party has been defeated in an election. It is natural that the party should carry out such reforms--this time could be the last chance to do so.
 3氏は、派閥が影響力を持つ党運営や人事、現職優先の候補者選考などを見直すとしている。いずれも選挙で敗北するたびに、改革の必要性が指摘されてきた。今度こそ実行しなければなるまい。

===

Time to start rebuilding

More importantly, LDP members should start by bracing themselves for a lengthy stay on the opposition benches. Accepting this sobering likelihood will be the first step in strengthening the party to a point where it can carry out political activities, steadily and tenaciously, across the nation.
 それ以上に大事なのは、野党時代が長引くことを覚悟することだ。その上で、地道で粘り強い政治活動を全国で展開できる力を養うことである。

Government subsidies to the party are expected to plunge from about 15.7 billion yen before the lower house election to about 10.4 billion yen. The LDP will have little option but to slash the number of party staffers and members' secretaries. If the party is serious about winning next summer's House of Councillors election, it should not hesitate to make sweeping changes to its list of would-be candidates if necessary.
 政党交付金は、選挙前の約157億円から約104億円に激減する見込みだ。党職員や秘書の大幅なリストラは避けられない。来年夏の参院選に勝利するには、大胆な候補者差し替えもためらうべきではないだろう。

Such actions could invite a fierce backlash and even lead to a split in the party if they are not handled properly. Even so, the LDP needs a leader who can convince any skeptics within the party to get on board, and, if push comes to shove, overcome any defiance.
 激しい反発を招き、対応を誤ると分裂する恐れも出てこよう。それでも、党内を説得し、抵抗を突破できる指導者が、今の自民党には必要だ。

Even if a successful candidate obtains the support of local assembly members and rank-and-file party members, the LDP will be viewed by many people as a "political party incapable of transforming itself" if the new LDP president ducks important national issues by focusing on such matters as dispensing with factions or ushering in a generational change in the party.
 地方議員や一般党員の支持を得ようと、派閥解消や世代交代を唱えてお茶を濁すようなら、国民からは「自己変革できない政党」の烙印(らくいん)を押されるだろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 19, 2009)
(2009年9月19日01時03分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月18日 (金)

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官僚会見禁止 政治主導をはき違えてないか

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 18, 2009)
Muzzling bureaucrats might be step too far
官僚会見禁止 政治主導をはき違えてないか(9月18日付・読売社説)

Members of Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama's Cabinet agreed at an informal meeting Wednesday that regular press conferences by administrative vice ministers and other bureaucrats will be abolished, and that concerned lawmakers such as ministers instead would hold press conferences to express the official views of ministries and agencies. After the meeting, government organizations were notified of this decision.
 鳩山新内閣が、閣僚懇談会で「府省の見解を表明する記者会見は、大臣等の『政』が行い、事務次官等の定例記者会見は行わない」ことを申し合わせ、各府省に通達した。

Official press conferences by ranking ministry and agency officials such as administrative vice ministers and other top bureaucrats are valuable opportunities for the news media to ask questions on technical issues related to each ministry and agency.
 官僚トップの事務次官など、府省幹部の公式記者会見は、担当行政にかかわる専門的なテーマについて、見解をただす貴重な機会になっている。

We have no objection to the Hatoyama Cabinet's drive to transform the nation's politics from its overdependence on bureaucrats to one led by politicians.
 鳩山内閣が「官僚依存」の政治を「政治主導」へと転換させていくことに異論はない。

However, we cannot condone the new administration if it attempts--under the name of "reducing the power of bureaucrats"--to restrict opportunities for the media to ask questions and consequently infringe on the public's right to know. We want the Hatoyama administration to reconsider its decision to muzzle bureaucrats.
 しかし、その名のもと、報道機関の取材の機会を制限し、国民の「知る権利」を奪うのであれば、容認できない。官僚会見の禁止に再考を求めたい。

Banning these media conferences appears to be an attempt by the new Cabinet to show that it will not allow top ministry and agency officials to control policy direction via press conferences.
 新内閣が官僚の記者会見禁止を打ち出したのは、各府省の幹部が会見を通じて、政策を方向付けたりすることは許さない、という意思表示と言えよう。

===

Drawing the line

The agreement among the Cabinet members underlines that lawmakers have responsibility for planning, adjusting and deciding policies, and that bureaucrats should help this process. This relationship between lawmakers and bureaucrats is quite reasonable.
 申し合わせでは、政策の立案・調整・決定は、「政」が責任を持って行い、「官」はこれを補佐すると強調している。この政官関係は、当然のことである。

But banning press conferences by administrative vice ministers and other bureaucrats seems excessive. It also is unclear just who "other bureaucrats" refers to.
 だが、そこで「事務次官等」の会見まで禁止するのは、明らかに行き過ぎだ。「等」がどこまでを指すのかも判然としない。

The Cabinet says ministers will allow bureaucrats to hold press conferences if their expertise is needed or the situation demands. However, the standard for this is so vague that there has already been some confusion at ministries and agencies.
 「専門性その他の状況に応じ」、大臣の判断で官僚会見も行うとしているが、基準があいまいで、各府省で混乱を生じている。

Government entities have to inform the public about many issues. Some of them are urgent matters, such as influenza outbreaks and disasters. It is unrealistic to expect lawmakers to hold every single press conference on such issues.
 各府省には、国民に知らせるべきことが数多くある。インフルエンザや災害の発生状況など緊急を要する問題もある。こうした記者会見を「政」が一手に引き受けるのは、非現実的だろう。

Of course, in an ideal world, ministers, vice ministers and parliamentary secretaries could understand every detail on all policy issues and give a full account of them. But there are question marks over whether this is really possible.
 肝心な政策問題も、大臣、副大臣、政務官らが詳細を掌握し、説明を尽くせればよいが、実際に可能なのかどうか疑問は残る。

===

Unintended consequences

The new Cabinet's disdain for bureaucrats' press conferences has stirred concern that bureaucrats might feel intimidated and become hesitant to disclose information that could be necessary for the public. We are worried that bureaucrats might use the ban as an excuse not to hold press conferences, and try to conceal scandals and other problems.
 今回の通達で懸念されるのは、官僚が萎(い)縮(しゅく)し、国民に必要な情報の開示に消極的になることだ。通達を盾に会見を拒み、不祥事などを隠蔽(いんぺい)する恐れもある。

Administrative bodies are supposed to always be open to the public. The role of the news media is to watch and scrutinize ministries and agencies on behalf of the public.
 そもそも、行政機関は、常に国民からよく見える存在でなければならない。報道機関は、国民に代わって行政機関を監視する役割を担っている。

Restricting press conferences would make the policy-making process less transparent. This would go against the new government's aim of breaking the dominance of bureaucrats.
 記者会見を制限し、政策決定過程の透明性が低下することになれば、新政権の掲げる「官僚支配打破」にも反することになろう。

The agreement by the new ministers says lawmakers and bureaucrats should carry out their responsibilities for the country and its people based on a clear separation of roles. If that is the case, then by the same token, lawmakers and bureaucrats could hold different kinds of press conferences based on their respective roles.
 申し合わせでは、「政」と「官」は、役割分担に基づいて、国家国民のために職務を遂行する、としている。それならば記者会見も、それぞれ役割を分担して実施すればよいはずである。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 18, 2009)
(2009年9月18日01時31分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月17日 (木)

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鳩山内閣発足 進路を誤らず改革を進めよ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 17, 2009)
Take the right direction toward change
鳩山内閣発足 進路を誤らず改革を進めよ(9月17日付・読売社説)

Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama's new administration got up and running Wednesday, though public sentiment seems split between expectation and anxiety over the nation's political future.
Members of the new Cabinet should not allow themselves to feel any exhilaration over the birth of this historic government.
 多くの国民の期待と不安が交錯する中での出発である。
 鳩山新内閣が16日発足した。歴史的な政権交代だが、その高揚感に浸っている余裕はないはずだ。

Confusion caused by the transfer of power also must be avoided, as the new government will have to tackle such urgent issues as pulling the nation out of the global recession, designing the future of the social security system and developing a new strategic foreign policy. To achieve tangible results, all of these tasks must be conducted at full power.
 世界不況からの脱出、社会保障制度の将来設計、新たな戦略的外交――。新内閣は、政権交代に伴う混乱を避けつつ、待ったなしの課題に総力で取り組み、具体的な成果を上げねばならない。

===

Be flexible over manifesto vows
 ◆公約の「自縛」に陥るな◆

The public is expecting the new Cabinet to change the Liberal Democratic Party's style of politics, which had hit an impasse. This desire for change was made clear by the results of the recent House of Representatives election.
 新内閣への期待は、行き詰まりを見せていた自民党政治の転換にある。それが、衆院選で示された民意と言えよう。

However, people also are concerned that excessive changes might lead to problems. The new Cabinet should take a levelheaded approach to continuing the basic policies of its predecessors with regard to the future course of the nation.
 一方で、行き過ぎた変革が混迷をもたらすのではないかと、国民が不安を感じているのも事実だ。歴代政権が積み重ねてきた日本の進路にかかわる基本政策は、継続する冷静な判断が大切だ。

Meanwhile, the Democratic Party of Japan should not cling too tenaciously to the pledges it made for the lower house election. People who voted the DPJ into power do not necessarily support all of these promises.
 民主党は、衆院選の政権公約に固執してはなるまい。民主党に投票した有権者は、すべての公約に賛成しているわけではない。

There also are some public doubts as to whether financial resources can be secured for many of the DPJ manifesto pledges and whether some of these pledges are really feasible, including a child-allowance system, toll-free expressways and targets for cutting the nation's greenhouse gas emissions. According to opinion polls, more people than not oppose many of these election vows.
 子ども手当、高速道路の無料化、温室効果ガスの排出削減目標など、多くの公約は、財源確保や目標達成が疑問視されている。世論調査でも、反対が賛成を上回る例が少なくない。

The DPJ apparently is keen to avoid criticism for breaking its promises. However, it would be even worse for the DPJ to fall into an election-pledge trap of its own making, which could cause irreversible damage. It is vital for the party to have the courage to reexamine its pledges and revise those in need of improvement.
 民主党とすれば、「公約違反」との批判を避けたいだろうが、自縄自縛に陥り、取り返しのつかない事態になる方がはるかに問題である。公約を吟味し、見直すべきものは見直す勇気が大事だ。

In the new Cabinet, DPJ Acting President Naoto Kan became deputy prime minister and national strategy minister, and former DPJ Secretary General Katsuya Okada assumed the post of foreign minister.
 新内閣では、民主党の菅直人代表代行が副総理兼国家戦略相に、岡田克也・前幹事長が外相に、それぞれ就任した。

Hirohisa Fujii, the party's top adviser, was appointed finance minister, while former DPJ President Seiji Maehara was named construction and transport minister.
財務相には藤井裕久最高顧問、国土交通相には前原誠司・元代表が起用された。

Hatoyama apparently has taken the power balance of intraparty groups into consideration and placed people who have proven themselves in the past in important posts.
 党内勢力のバランスに配慮しつつ、実績のある人材を要所に配置した。

Though the makeup of the new Cabinet seems solid, it seems to lack a certain freshness.
手堅い布陣と言えるが、清新さに欠ける印象は否めない。

At a press conference held in the evening, Hatoyama underscored his intention to end the practice of excessive government dependence on bureaucrats with regard to policy-making.
 鳩山首相は記者会見で、「脱・官僚依存政治」を強調した。

Key to his success will be the national strategy bureau and the administrative renewal council, to be administered by Kan and Administrative Renewal Minister Yoshito Sengoku, respectively.
そのカギを握るのが、菅国家戦略相と仙谷由人行政刷新相が所管する国家戦略局と行政刷新会議だ。

===

Politician-led politics
 ◆政治主導は実現するか◆

The national strategy bureau--for now--will take on the jobs of recompiling the fiscal 2009 supplementary budget and setting out policies for compiling the budget for the next fiscal year.
 国家戦略局は当面、今年度補正予算の組み替えや来年度予算編成方針の策定に取り組む。

Putting the economy firmly on the path to recovery is the top priority of all economic policies, and finding financial sources to fund new initiatives that come with huge price tags is of crucial importance. Hatoyama, therefore, must ensure his new administration juggles these two difficult goals.
 経済政策では、景気を回復軌道に乗せることが最優先課題だ。一方で、新規施策の巨額の財源確保も必要となる。双方に目配りした舵(かじ)取りが求められる。

There are concerns over possible frictions between the national strategy bureau and ministries and agencies, as the extent of the national strategy bureau's authority has yet to be established. Kan should work in close consultation with Fujii on budgetary matters.
 国家戦略局の権限が不明確なため、各府省と摩擦が生じる懸念もある。菅国家戦略相は藤井財務相らと緊密に連携すべきだ。

The administrative renewal council is charged with a "zero-based review" of the work done by ministries, agencies and independent administrative institutions. Powerful political leadership that can weed out resistance by bureaucrats and relevant organizations is indispensable in terms of plunging the scalpel into the vested interests of each government entity and effecting the large-scale transfer of work performed by the central government to local governments and the private sector.
 行政刷新会議は、各府省や独立行政法人などの事務をゼロベースで見直す。各府省の既得権益に深く切り込み、国の事務を地方や民間に大胆に移管するには、官僚や関係団体の抵抗を排する強力な政治力が不可欠だ。

Labor unions that support the DPJ could be a stumbling block to reform. In addition to Sengoku, Hatoyama himself must exercise leadership in this endeavor.
 民主党の支持団体の労組も抵抗勢力となりかねない。仙谷行政刷新相はもとより、鳩山首相自身が指導力を発揮せねばならない。

To enable politicians to assume leadership in policy-making, it is essential to have a robust Cabinet lineup, with key ministers keeping their posts until this Cabinet resigns--a departure from the LDP's practice of constantly reshuffling the cabinet.
 政治主導には、少なくとも重要閣僚は「一内閣一閣僚」というぐらいの布陣が必要だ。自民党政権の年中行事だった内閣改造の慣行を改めることも課題だろう。

Health, Labor and Welfare Minister Akira Nagatsuma stepped into the limelight two years ago, when he grilled the government over its sloppy pension-record-keeping. Nagatsuma is now tasked with directing the ministry instead of leveling a barrage of criticism against it. He will be tested on whether he has the ability to make bureaucrats dance to his tune.
 長妻昭厚生労働相は、「消えた年金」問題の追及で脚光を浴びた。今後は、厚労省を批判するのでなく、牽引(けんいん)する責任を担う。官僚を使いこなす手腕が問われる。

Social Democratic Party leader Mizuho Fukushima was appointed as state minister in charge of consumer affairs and the declining birthrate. Her appointment likely is aimed at reflecting the viewpoint of women and consumers in general with regard to the government's policies. We hope Fukushima will try to implement a well-balanced administration that does not express views that largely differ from the government line in order to make her party's presence felt.
 社民党の福島瑞穂党首は、消費者・少子化相に起用された。女性や生活者の視点を政策に反映する狙いだろう。社民党の存在感を示そうとして突出した主張を展開せず、バランスのとれた行政を心がけてほしい。

Meanwhile, People's New Party leader Shizuka Kamei was named state minister in charge of financial services and postal reform.
While it is necessary to revamp the somewhat flawed Japan Post Holdings Co. led by Yoshifumi Nishikawa and review the privatization of postal services by taking end-users' convenience into consideration, Kamei should not digress from the original purpose of the privatization, and should refrain from any attempt to revive the huge financial institution at the government's initiative.
 国民新党の亀井静香代表は、金融・郵政改革相に就任した。ほころびが目立つ日本郵政の「西川体制」の刷新や、利用者本位の郵政民営化の見直しは必要だ。ただ、民営化の本筋を歪(ゆが)め、巨大官製金融を復活させるべきではない。

Hatoyama should not easily be pushed into agreeing to policies put forward by the DPJ's coalition partners--the SDP and the PNP.
 鳩山首相は、政策面で連立相手の社民、国民新両党に安易に引きずられてはなるまい。

===
Tests lie ahead
 ◆日米基軸の堅持を◆

In terms of foreign policy, Hatoyama's first real test will come next week during a visit to the United States.
 外交では、来週の鳩山首相の訪米が最初の試金石となる。

Concerning the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean, Hatoyama says the mission will not automatically be extended beyond its mid-January expiration. If this is the case, the prime minister should strive to find another way to continue the mission rather than by "the automatic extension of the expiration."
 インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動について、首相は「来年1月の期限を単純に延長することはない」という。それなら、「単純な延長」以外の方法で、活動を継続する道を探るべきではないか。

The realignment of U.S. forces in Japan, including the relocation of U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station in Okinawa Prefecture, also is an important issue. We believe steady implementation of the agreement between Japan and the United States is the fastest way to reduce the burden on local governments in the prefecture.
 普天間飛行場の移設など在日米軍再編は、日米合意を着実に実施することこそが、沖縄など地元自治体の負担軽減の近道である。

With regard to North Korean nuclear issues, Washington recently has shown its readiness to hold direct talks with Pyongyang. In order to get North Korea back around the six-party table and obtain concessions from Pyongyang, the Japanese government needs to steadily implement a U.N. Security Council sanction resolution and continue to put pressure on North Korea.
 北朝鮮の核問題では、米国が最近、北朝鮮との対話に応じる姿勢に転じた。北朝鮮を6か国協議に復帰させ、譲歩を勝ち取るには、国連の制裁決議を着実に履行し、圧力をかけ続ける必要がある。

Hatoyama also should reaffirm Japan's close cooperation with China, South Korea, Russian and the United States and try to pass into law as quickly as possible a bill to permit inspections of cargo carried by North Korean ships and aircraft.
 鳩山首相は、米中韓露との連携を再確認するとともに、北朝鮮に対する貨物検査特別措置法案の早期成立を図るべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 17, 2009)
(2009年9月17日01時14分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月16日 (水)

新人議員 「国事」を担う志と責任感を

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 16, 2009)
Hopes, responsibilities of new Diet members
新人議員 「国事」を担う志と責任感を(9月16日付・読売社説)

As a result of the change of government, the House of Representatives chamber will have a completely different look when a special Diet session convenes Wednesday. The seats allocated to the largest party in the lower house, which are located to the speaker's right, will be taken by the Democratic Party of Japan, instead of the Liberal Democratic Party.
 今日召集される特別国会の衆院本会議場の風景は、政権交代によって、がらりと一変する。議長席から見て、右側の第1党の席は、自民党に代わって民主党が陣取る。

Of the DPJ seats, nearly half will be occupied by the 143 members who were elected to the Diet for the first time. The first-time Diet members include former employees of private firms and local assembly members. Some of them previously worked as bureaucrats and as secretaries for Diet members. Among the freshmen, some have absolutely no experience in politics.
 その半分近い広さを143人の同党新人議員が占める。
 初当選組には、民間企業や地方議員の出身者もいれば、議員秘書や官僚を務めた者も少なくない。政治経験が全くない人もいる。

How will politics change under the DPJ government and what policies will actually be carried out? Those putting on their Diet members tags for the first time on Wednesday will immediately come under close scrutiny.
 民主党政権下で、政治の何を変え、どんな政策を実行していくのか。初登院して議員バッジをつける今日からさっそく試される。

===

Duties of representatives

"Daigishi," as lower house members are called, means a person who discusses state affairs on behalf of the public. First of all, newly elected lawmakers should once again carefully read the Constitution--the basic law of the land--and the Diet Law, which stipulates the rules of the Diet.
 代議士とは、国民を代表し「国事」を議する人という意味だ。まずは、国の基本法である憲法と国会ルールを定めた国会法を、改めて熟読してもらいたい。

It is also important that they proceed with their work keeping an up-to-date image in their minds of the times and the future direction of the nation as a whole.
 確かな時代認識を持ち、国家全体の行く末を常に視野に入れ、仕事を進めることも大事だ。

Of the 83 so-called Koizumi Kids, who were selected by former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and who swept to victory in the 2005 lower house election, only nine were reelected this time as LDP candidates.
 「小泉チルドレン」と呼ばれた83人のうち、引き続き自民党から出馬して再選されたのは、わずか9人に過ぎない。

The DPJ's first-time Diet members should keep in mind that they, too, could face the same destiny. They should remember that more important than anything else is to work steadily on a daily basis on their duties for the Diet and their local constituencies.
 民主党の新人も、明日はわが身かもしれない。国会や地元での地道な日常活動が何より重要だ。

When former Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone attended the Diet for the first time, he wore a black tie, saying that he did so because the country would remain in mourning as long as it was occupied by the United States. It was a start befitting Nakasone, who went on to call for Japan to write its own constitution and, as prime minister, for the issues blighting Japan's postwar political system to be settled once and for all.
 かつて、中曽根元首相は、黒ネクタイで初登院した。「米国占領中は喪中だ」というのがその理由だった。その後一貫して、自主憲法制定を唱え、首相時代には「戦後政治の総決算」を掲げた中曽根氏らしい出発だった。

All the newly elected Diet members will undoubtedly have their own political beliefs and ideals. We hope that they will not forget these aspirations that they have in their minds on their first official day in the Diet.
 議員一人ひとりに、政治信条や理想があるに違いない。初登院の日の「志」を、政治家生活の中で貫いていってほしい。

===

Fall not into temptation

Many Diet member activities are supported by taxpayers' money paid to them in the form of annual allowances and party subsidies. Diet members have privileges and face financial temptations when it comes to dealing with vested interests.
Given these factors, it is important they keep themselves on the straight and narrow, never forgetting the viewpoint of the ordinary man in the street.
 国会議員の活動の多くは、歳費や政党交付金など税金で支えられている。議員特権もあれば、利権絡みの金銭的な誘惑もある。それこそ、「生活者の視点」で身を正していくことが肝要だろう。

Sooner or later, the newly elected Diet members will be stationed as parliamentary secretaries or other posts in government ministries and agencies.
 いずれ、政務官などとして各府省に配置されることになる。

Unlike their seniors, newly elected DPJ members will start their careers as lawmakers in the ruling camp. Therefore, they will be in the position of "directing" officials in government departments rather than "challenging" them.
 民主党新人は、先輩とは違って与党として議員生活をスタートさせる。役所を「追及」するのではなく、「指示」する立場だ。

They will probably find it difficult to work effectively with government officials at first. But they will find it better to try working with bureaucrats, with a willingness to learn from their specialized administrative expertise.
 最初から役人を使いこなすのは難しいだろう。行政の専門知識をもつ官僚から学ぶ気持ちで協働作業をすればいい。

Only trouble will result if they come to represent the clanlike interests of certain industries and prefectures. Instead, becoming well-versed in policy matters will be a powerful tool for getting their points across to bureaucrats.
 業界や各府省の権益を代弁する族議員になっては困る。ただ、政策に精通することは、官僚を説き伏せる武器になる。

Meanwhile, the LDP has only five newly elected Diet members. But this means they will have a great opportunity to engage in a variety of tasks. We hope that as members of an opposition party, they will work with a strong determination to keep a close eye on the administration led by the incoming prime minister, Yukio Hatoyama.
 一方、自民党の新人はわずか5人にとどまる。それだけ、多くの仕事を受け持つ好機でもある。野党議員として、鳩山政権を厳しく追及する気迫が求められる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 16, 2009)
(2009年9月16日01時21分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月15日 (火)

リーマン1年 金融再生に教訓を生かせ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 15, 2009)
Apply lessons learned from Lehman Shock
リーマン1年 金融再生に教訓を生かせ(9月15日付・読売社説)

The global financial crisis that originated in the United States, said to be the worst in a century, has been easing, but a full-fledged recovery seems a long way off.
 「100年に1度」とも言われた米国発の金融危機は、最悪期を脱しつつある。しかし、再生への道のりは、まだ半ばといえよう。

A year has passed since major U.S. investment bank Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. collapsed on Sept. 15, 2008. The so-called Lehman Shock caused an unprecedented financial crisis that pushed nations across the world into a simultaneous economic downturn.
 米大手証券のリーマン・ブラザーズが昨年9月15日に経営破綻(はたん)してから1年になる。リーマン・ショックは、未曽有の金融危機の引き金になり、世界を深刻な同時不況に陥れた。

Prior to Lehman Brothers' collapse, the housing bubble had burst in the United States, and the market for higher-risk financial derivatives packed with mortgages had contracted sharply. This happened because monetary authorities failed to take swift action to respond to market volatility.
 米国で住宅バブルが崩壊し、住宅ローンなどを組み込んだハイリスクな金融商品が暴落した。そうした市場の暴走に、金融当局の対応も遅れた結果だ。

A year after the failure of Lehman Brothers, instability in global financial markets has finally been alleviated, and the world financial and economic situation is picking up.
 1年がたち、金融不安はようやく和らぎ、世界の金融・経済情勢は持ち直してきた。

===

U.S. economy remains weak

Japan, China, European nations, the United States and other major countries mobilized every possible policy weapon at their disposal, including large-scale economic pump-priming activities and extraordinary easy-money policies. It is significant that international cooperation brought about good results and prevented the crisis from spiraling out of control.
 日米欧と中国などが、大型の景気対策や、異例の金融緩和策などの政策を総動員した。その国際協調が効果を発揮し、危機の連鎖を食い止めた意義は大きい。

Stock prices in Japan, Europe and the United States, which had tumbled, have recovered to levels about 10 percent lower than those recorded before the Lehman Shock. Stock prices in emerging countries, such as China, are turning up.
 急落した日米欧の株価は現在、リーマン・ショック前の1割減の水準まで回復し、中国など新興国の株価は上昇に転じている。

Economies in major countries are on a recovery track. Among leading countries that have registered negative growth, Japan returned to positive growth during the April-June period. Although Europe and the United States have so far been unable to sail out of the economic doldrums, their economies are expected to bottom out this year. China has maintained an economic growth rate of about 8 percent.
 景気も回復基調だ。マイナス成長に陥った先進国のうち、日本は4~6月期にプラス成長に転じ、景気後退が続く米国と欧州も、年内の底入れが見込まれる。中国は約8%の成長率を維持する。

But the financial crisis is not over. There is little ground for optimism.
 しかし、危機が完全に去ったわけではない。楽観は禁物だ。

In the United States, the jobless rate has risen to about 10 percent. Individual consumption remains low, and the economy remains weak. There are fears that a double-dip recession could occur.
 震源地の米国では、失業率が約10%に上昇している。個人消費の低迷も続き、景気回復力は弱い。再び景気が悪化する「二番底」も懸念される。

The sluggish U.S. economy could have serious consequences for the rest of the world, including Japan. Given that the global economy has yet to make a full-fledged recovery, it would be premature to begin an exit strategy and scale down economic pump-priming measures.
 米国経済のもたつきは、日本など世界に打撃となる。世界景気が本格的に回復するまで、景気刺激策を元に戻す「出口戦略」に踏み出すことは時期尚早だろう。

===

G-20 meet focus of attention

To avoid a recurrence of the crisis, it is an urgent task to strengthen financial regulation and supervision.
 危機再発を防ぐための金融規制と監督の強化も急務だ。

The administration of U.S. President Barack Obama has announced its new reform proposals to tighten controls over the financial sector. But there are moves in the United States to oppose Obama's reform proposals.
 オバマ米大統領は、新たな規制改革案を示した。だが、米国内にはこれに反発する動きがある。

The Group of 20 developed and emerging nations also aims to strengthen regulations by reviewing the capital adequacy ratios of financial institutions and capping executive bonuses, but has had difficulty setting international rules due to conflicts of interest.
 主要20か国・地域(G20)も、金融機関の自己資本比率の見直しや経営陣の報酬制限などの規制の強化を目指すが、利害の対立で国際ルール作りは難航している。

It is feared that movements of speculative money have revived, taking advantage of a delay in efforts by individual countries to strengthen financial regulations. Crude oil and gold prices are soaring. We should stay alert for the rapid expansion of money flowing outside the real economy.
 取り組みの遅れを見透かすように、投機マネーの動きが復活してきたのが気がかりだ。原油、金などの価格が急上昇している。実体経済と遊離したマネーの再膨張を警戒しなければなるまい。

The G-20 financial summit meeting will be held in Pittsburgh on Sept. 24-25. How will the world's financial leaders apply the lessons learned from the Lehman Shock? Their ability to take action to accelerate financial revitalization will be put to the test.
 24日から米ピッツバーグで、G20金融サミットが開かれる。リーマン・ショックの教訓をどう生かすか。金融再生を加速する行動が首脳たちに問われよう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 15, 2009)
(2009年9月15日01時09分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月14日 (月)

香山リカのココロの万華鏡:思春期の悩みはラッキー /東京

(Mainichi Japan) September 13, 2009
Kaleidoscope of the Heart: Suffering from teen angst? Lucky you!
香山リカのココロの万華鏡:思春期の悩みはラッキー /東京

During the summer break, I was given the chance to present a lecture to a group of junior high school students in Hokkaido. Originally, I was only to give a talk to their parents and guardians in the evening, but was asked to add the kids to my schedule.
 この夏休み、北海道のある町の中学生たちの前で講演をする機会があった。夜にその町の保護者たちに向けての講演を行う予定だったのだが、「せっかくなので昼に子どもたちにも」と依頼されたのだ。

My student audience that afternoon numbered 200, drawn from every grade in the idyllic country town's two junior highs. Most of them were tanned nearly black, and looked very healthy. My current office is located in a business district, and I rarely have a patient under 16 years old. Even so, I can say that the faces of these kids were very different from those one sees in big cities.
 聴衆は、その自然がいっぱいの町にあるふたつの中学の生徒200人。1年から3年まで全部合わせてもその人数なのだという。多くの生徒が真っ黒に日焼けし、とても健康そうだ。私が現在、勤務する診療所はビジネス街に近いせいもあり、15歳以下の患者さんはほとんど来ないが、都会で見る中学生の顔とは明らかに違う、とうれしくなった。

I covered two topics that day. First of all, I explained to them that, even if they didn't have a concrete dream for the future, they would be OK. I told them that even if they hadn't noticed it consciously, deep in their hearts, many were already forming a plan for what direction they would take their lives in.
 その日、私はふたつのことを話した。ひとつは、「夢などなくても大丈夫」ということ。自分で気づかなくても、心の奥の奥ではちゃんと「私にはこれが向いている」「僕がやりたいのはこんなこと」と計画が立てられていることが多い。

So, they should trust themselves, and for the time being, do their best with what's going on right now. "If you do that," I said, "your heart will set you on the right path."
 だから、自分を信頼し、とりあえず目の前にあることを一生懸命やろう。そうすれば、心はあなたを正しい方向に導いてくれるはず。

Second, I told them that "those of you who find yourselves troubled, find yourselves hurt, you are the lucky ones." When in junior high, kids have a tendency to think their lives are terrible if they run up against a difficult experience, but this isn't so.
 それから、もうひとつ。「いま悩んでいる人、傷ついている人はラッキー」という話もした。中学のときにイヤな体験をすると、「こんな人生、最悪」と思ってしまいがちだが実は違う。

Kids who face up to and recover from the trials and aggravations of pubescence gain the courage and wisdom to overcome serious barriers throughout their lives.
 大事な思春期のときに悩み、苦しみに立ち向かう経験をした人は、一生を乗り越えるだけの知恵と勇気を手にできる。

Conversely, those kids who can say every day is fun and carefree, who go through those three years of junior high without knowing serious frustration or pain, will have to be careful when they are adults.
逆に、「毎日が楽しくて楽しくて」と挫折も悩みも知らずにこの時期をすごした人は、大人になってからちょっと気をつけたほうがいい。

When I said this, I spotted a number of girls in the audience crying and covering their eyes.
 そういう話をしたら、会場にいた数人の女子生徒が涙ぐんだり目を押さえたりしているのが目に入った。

Even in this small town, surrounded by nature, there are kids worried and hurt over issues with family and school friends. How could it be otherwise?
 こんな小さな、自然に恵まれた町の中学にも、家庭のこと、学校の友だち関係のことなどで、悩み傷ついている子どもたちがいるのだろうか。当然、そうだろう。

No matter how wholesome the environment is, how much one has grown up surrounded by sea and mountain, trouble and confusion between people does not go away, and it would not surprise me to learn that bullying was a problem in this town's junior highs.
 いくら環境が良い場所に住んでいても、家族関係や人間関係のゴタゴタまでが消えてなくなるわけではない。いじめの問題がこの町の中学にあってもおかしくはない。

No matter how tanned these kids are, how bright their eyes, we must realize that "kids today" remain subject to all manner of cares and worries.
 いくら日焼けして目をキラキラさせていても、海や山に囲まれた土地で育っていても、“いまどきの子どもたち”はそれぞれさまざまな悩みを抱えている。

"Kids look so happy, so they must really be happy inside as well." This is no more than an arbitrary and perhaps convenient way of thinking on the part of adults. I learned a lot from the tears of those students in that beautiful Hokkaido town. (By Rika Kayama, psychiatrist)
 「元気そうな顔をしているから、心の中も晴天なのだろう」などというのは、大人の勝手な考えにしかすぎないのだ。自然豊かな町の中学生の涙に、いろいろなことを教えられた気がした。

毎日新聞 2009年9月8日 地方版

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政治主導 官僚を敵視せず使いこなせ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 14, 2009)
Don't vilify bureaucrats--employ their expertise
政治主導 官僚を敵視せず使いこなせ(9月14日付・読売社説)

The Democratic Party of Japan says the transfer of the reins of government offers a good opportunity to take power out of the hands of bureaucrats and put it into lawmakers' hands. But politician-led government should be a means to an end--the formulation and implementation of better policies--not an end in itself.
 民主党は、政権交代は「官僚主導」政治を「政治主導」に転換する好機という。だが、政治主導は、より良い政策の立案と実行のための手段であり、目的ではあるまい。

Keeping this in mind, we hope the DPJ operates the new administration in a way that brings about tangible results.
 民主党は、この点を肝に銘じて新政権を運営し、具体的な成果につなげてもらいたい。

The DPJ has drawn up a framework for a politician-initiated decision-making system under which about 100 of the party's lawmakers will be placed in ministries and agencies, a national strategy bureau under the direct control of the prime minister will be set up as a "control tower," politicians will decide on and coordinate policies through committees comprising cabinet ministers tasked with working in particular policy fields, and the administrative vice ministers' meeting will be abolished.
 国会議員約100人を政府内に配置する。首相直属の国家戦略局を司令塔とし、少人数の閣僚によるテーマ別の閣僚委員会を活用して、政治家が政策を調整、決定する。事務次官会議は廃止する。
 これが、民主党の描く政治主導の意思決定システムの骨格だ。

Using the opportunity provided by the transfer of administrative power, the DPJ aims to eliminate collusive bidding practices conducted at the initiative of government officials and wasteful spending of taxpayers' money by targeting bureaucrats' vested interests. We have no objection to that. It is important to clarify the roles of politicians and bureaucrats and then create new rules that reflect that distinction.
 政権交代を機に、官僚の既得権益に切り込み、官製談合や税金の無駄遣いを徹底して排除する狙いに、異論はない。政治家と官僚の役割分担を明確にし、新たなルールを作ることも大切だろう。

===

Precedent not sacred

Now is also a good chance to end the custom of following precedent without careful consideration and reexamine past practices. One example of how this could be achieved is the DPJ's pledge to investigate a purported secret Japan-U.S. pact allowing the entry into Japan of U.S. nuclear-armed naval vessels and aircraft, which Foreign Ministry officials are said to have long regarded as untouchable.
 安易な前例踏襲をやめ、再点検する機会でもある。外務官僚がタブーとしてきた、核持ち込みに関する日米の密約問題を調査する民主党の方針は、その一例だ。

The basis of politician-led politics is that lawmakers picked by the public make decisions by themselves on important policies, thereby assuming responsibility for them. As high-priority tasks for the new cabinet will be tackled using a top-down approach, the concept behind the national strategy bureau makes sense.
 国民から選ばれた政治家が重要な政策について自ら判断し、その責任を負う。それが政治主導の本質だ。新内閣の最優先課題をトップダウンで決めるため、国家戦略局を活用する構想は悪くない。

It is true that current cabinet meetings are largely ceremonial. It is, therefore, significant that a small number of concerned ministers will discuss the nitty-gritty of policies at cabinet committees and coordinate them.
 現在の閣議が形骸(けいがい)化しているのは事実だ。少数の関係閣僚が閣僚委員会で、実質的に議論し、政策を調整することは意味がある。

On the other hand, if the DPJ asserts its determination to realize lawmaker-led politics, lawmakers must master policy details and handle the bureaucracy skillfully. Unless they make good use of bureaucrats' expertise, administrative functions will deteriorate.
 一方で、政治主導を掲げる以上、政治家には、政策を十分理解し、官僚を使いこなす能力が求められる。官僚の専門性を活用しなければ、行政機能は低下する。

In recent years, the number of people applying to become central government officials has been declining. One reasons for this is said to be increasing criticism of public servants due to repeated revelations of bureaucratic misconduct. If the government cannot secure talented human resources, administrative work will be impeded, which will have an adverse effect on the people. It will also end up harming the nation's international competitiveness.
 近年、国家公務員志望者の減少が続いた。不祥事続発に伴う官僚批判の高まりが一因という。政府に優秀な人材が集まらなければ、行政が停滞し、困るのは国民だ。将来の国際競争にも影響する。

===

Relationship of trust crucial

In Britain, whose system of government the DPJ looks to as a model, there is criticism that there are too many ruling party lawmakers in the government, which is said to hamper administration.
 民主党が「お手本」とする英国でも、政府内の与党議員が多すぎて行政に支障を来している、との批判があるとされる。

The DPJ should not resort to bureaucrat-bashing to win the public's support as it did when it was an opposition party. It should refrain from opposing government personnel nominees requiring approval from both chambers of the Diet on the ground that they are former bureaucrats. Instead, it should make personnel appointments based on ability.
 民主党は、野党時代のように、人気取りのために官僚たたきに走るべきではない。官僚OBであることだけを理由に国会同意人事に反対するといった対応は慎み、能力本位の人事を行うべきだ。

So politicians can make correct decisions, it is indispensable that they have a relationship of trust with bureaucrats, who provide fresh information and ideas. Rather than taking a hostile view of bureaucrats, it is important for lawmakers to make maximum use of their expertise.
 政治家が誤りなき判断をするには、生きた情報とアイデアを提供する官僚との信頼関係が欠かせない。官僚を敵視せず、その能力を最大限引き出すことが重要だ。

Bureaucrats, for their part, should not forget their primary responsibility is to stay politically neutral and serve the people.
 官僚も、政治的中立性を保ち、国民に奉仕する、という原点を忘れてはなるまい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 14, 2009)
(2009年9月14日01時19分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月13日 (日)

財界―政治とともに変わる時だ

--The Asahi Shimbun, Sept. 11(IHT/Asahi: September 12,2009)
EDITORIAL: Down to business
財界―政治とともに変わる時だ

The business world, traditionally a staunch supporter of administrations led by the Liberal Democratic Party, is being pressed to alter its stance toward politics.
 自民党政権を支え続けてきた財界が、政治との関係について転換を迫られようとしている。

This begs the question: What role will it play after the inauguration of the coalition government led by Yukio Hatoyama of the Democratic Party of Japan?
 民主党中心の鳩山連立政権の誕生後どういう役割を果たしていくのか。問われているのはそのことだ。

Under the outgoing coalition setup of the LDP and its junior partner New Komeito, business leaders, such as the chairman of Nippon Keidanren (Japan Business Federation), were closely involved in policymaking as private-sector members of the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy.
 自公政権下では日本経団連会長らが経済財政諮問会議の民間議員として政策づくりに深くかかわった。

The new administration plans to abolish the council and formulate policy under the proposed National Strategy Bureau. Some business leaders have expressed concern that their voices would no longer be heard.
新政権は諮問会議を廃止し、新設の国家戦略局で政策の骨格を決めるという。財界幹部からは「意見を聞いてくれなくなるだろう」との嘆きが漏れる。

However, with a change of government, we are entering a new age. The business world needs to review its role and have the courage to push for change in response to the political upheaval.
 だが、政権交代は新しい時代の始まりである。財界は自らの役割を見直し、政治の大変動に対応して変化の道を探る勇気を持つべきだ。

The LDP-New Komeito government formed in the late 1990s put priority on economic reconstruction. To grapple with the so-called lost decade, it had to promote policies to enhance industrial competitiveness.
 90年代後半からの自公政権の最優先課題は「経済の再生」だった。「失われた10年」のまっただ中で産業競争力を強める政策が求められた。

Thus, the voices of industry were heard when the government came up with various policy measures. These included revisions to the Commercial Law to give more freedom to corporate activities as well as the law governing dispatched workers. The business community became more influential as industrial sectors spoke with one voice.
 企業活動の自由度を高めた商法改正や派遣社員を拡大した労働者派遣法改正など、産業界が求める政策が実行された。財界の声も力も一丸となり、発言力も強まった。

Up to now, it was common for business circles to act as a monolithic body to press the ruling parties for favorable economic policies. But this structure now seems consigned to the past. One example will revolve around policies to curb global warming.
 しかし、今後は一枚岩の財界が政権与党に経済政策を求めるという構図ではなくなるだろう。その具体例が地球温暖化対策だ。

DPJ President Hatoyama has announced a goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from the 1990 level by 2020. While the steel and electric power industries, which are major emitters, are digging their heels in, some sectors welcome the proposal because they expect it to boost demand for green products. The business community will likely find itself divided over the new administration's environmental policies.
 民主党の鳩山代表は温室効果ガスについて「2020年に90年比25%削減」という目標を打ち出した。経営への影響が大きい鉄鋼や電力などの業界は反発を強めているが、エコ商品などの需要拡大を期待する業界では評価する声もある。新政権の環境政策を巡って財界内部での意見の相違が目立つ場面も増えるのではないか。

Looking back, the business world and LDP governments have not always been in harmony. During the period of high economic growth, the business world tried to cold-shoulder government efforts to intervene in the way companies are run. It was also unhappy with the LDP's agricultural policy, which for a long time kept the nation's rice market closed.
 過去を振り返っても、財界と自民党政府の息が常に合ったわけではない。高度成長期には政府による経営への関与を財界がはねつけようとしたし、コメ開放を長らく拒んだ自民党の農業政策にも財界は不満だった。

In the past, the chairman of what was then Keidanren (Japan Federation of Economic Organizations) used to be dubbed the "prime minister of the business world." Taizo Ishizaka (1886-1975), who served as Keidanren's second chairman, is said to have argued violently with Cabinet ministers, telling them, "It's no use asking you any more."
経団連会長が「財界総理」と呼ばれたころの石坂泰三氏は閣僚らに「もう君には頼まない」と啖呵(たんか)を切り、丁々発止の関係だったとされる。

While the new administration is calling for the abolition of political donations by companies and other organizations, the business world should take it upon itself to stop the practice. It should sever monetary ties with governing parties and restrict itself to exchanging views with the government on policy matters. Building such a relationship between business and political circles will be important for the development of democracy in this country.
 新政権は企業・団体献金廃止を掲げるが、経済界は自発的に献金をやめるべきである。与党とのお金を通じた関係を絶ち、そのうえで政策を巡って政府と意見を交わすことがこの国の民主主義の発展にとって重要だ。

As long as companies are making a positive contribution to society through business activities, paying taxes and securing employment, they are entitled to a voice. It shouldn't depend on making political donations.
 企業がその活動や納税、雇用などで社会に貢献している限り、献金などしなくても発言の資格はある。

Economic analyses and policy proposals from the standpoint of the business world are significant to any administration. The vitality of companies is also indispensable to the improvement of national life. We want the business circle to also speak freely about the future of industries and employment.
 産業界からみた経済分析や政策提言はどのような政権にも有意義だろう。国民生活の向上に企業活力は不可欠だ。産業と雇用の将来像についても、自由に意見を言ってもらいたい。

We hope the business community will voluntarily transform into an organization that makes policy proposals not only for commercial profit but also for a broad range of "public interests."
 企業の利益だけでなく、幅広い「国民益」のための政策提言組織に財界が自ら脱皮していくことを期待したい。

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9・11から8年―「テロとの戦い」を超えて

--The Asahi Shimbun, Sept. 11(IHT/Asahi: September 12,2009)
EDITORIAL: 8 years after 9/11 attacks
9・11から8年―「テロとの戦い」を超えて

We still remember well the stiffened face of U.S. President George W. Bush that appeared on TV after the surprise terrorist attacks.
 画面に映し出されたブッシュ米大統領の張り詰めた表情を思い出す。

On Sept. 11, 2001, hijacked passenger jets slammed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington, killing more than 3,000 people.
 8年前の9月11日、ハイジャックされた旅客機がニューヨークの世界貿易センターや首都の国防総省に突っ込み、3千人以上が犠牲になった。

In a televised speech, Bush called the terror attacks "an act of war" and pledged retaliation against the perpetrators, declaring war against international terrorism.
 テレビを通じて「これは戦争行為だ」と語ったブッシュ氏は犯人への報復を誓い、国際テロに対する「戦争」を宣言した。

"Bush's war," which started with the U.S.-led attacks on Afghanistan, eventually led to the invasion of Iraq. The death toll among U.S. soldiers in the Iraq war alone has surpassed the number of victims in the Sept. 11 attacks. And a far larger number of Iraqi civilians have died in the conflict.
 アフガン攻撃で始まった「ブッシュ氏の戦争」はイラク攻撃につながっていく。イラクだけで9・11テロの犠牲者数を超える米軍兵士が命を落とした。それをはるかに上回るイラクの民間人が犠牲になった。

This year, Bush, who kept claiming that the war against terrorism was justified, left the White House and President Barack Obama took office. A key slogan of the new administration is reconciliation with Islam.
 そして今年、「対テロ戦争」の正義を訴え続けたブッシュ氏に代わって、オバマ大統領が登場した。新政権のキーワードは「イスラムとの和解」である。

Bush's war against terrorism has been replaced by a confrontation with violent extremism.
「対テロ戦争」は「暴力的過激主義との対決」にとって代わられた。

The policy change is based on the lessons learned from eight years of appalling destruction, huge casualty numbers, deep sorrow and profound anger. The U.S. government has shifted from the previous policy of dividing the world simply into the terrorist camp and the rest and battering all the forces it regards as terrorists with overwhelming military power.
 8年間に及ぶすさまじい破壊と犠牲、悲しみと怒り。その教訓に立っての変化である。相手を「テロリストか否か」で単純に二分し、「テロリスト」とみなせば圧倒的な軍事力でたたくという路線からの転換だ。

The new U.S. strategy for terrorism involves tackling the factors that breed support for the extremists, such as undemocratic politics, injustice, poverty and economic stagnation. It also seeks to use dialogue to build relations of mutual trust with people from different cultural and religious backgrounds.
 非民主的な政治や不正義、貧困、経済の停滞といった、過激派への支持を生んでいる土壌に切り込む。文化や宗教の異なる人々とも対話を通じて信頼を築いていく。そんな新しい戦略が読み取れる。

The world has welcomed this new direction.
 この方向性を世界は歓迎した。

Meanwhile in Japan, the long-governing Liberal Democratic Party, which solidly supported Bush's war against terrorism, will be replaced by the Democratic Party of Japan, which opposed the Iraq war. It is clearly time for Japan to start pursuing more voluntary efforts in diplomacy and international aid that are different from those of the LDP-led government.
日本でも、ブッシュ流の対テロ戦争支持の自民党から、イラク戦争に反対した民主党に政権が交代する。自民党時代とは違う、日本の主体的な外交や支援の取り組みを構築すべき時である。

It is, however, by no means easy to end a war once it has started. President Obama, who has pledged to seek more international dialogue in grappling with the challenge, is now facing this grim truth. In particular, Obama has sent additional troops to Afghanistan to beef up the U.S. combat force for what he sees as a necessary war. But the situation in Afghanistan appears to be deteriorating steadily.
 だが、いったん始めた戦争は簡単に終わらせられない。対話を掲げるオバマ大統領が直面するのは、この冷厳な現実だ。とりわけアフガンにはオバマ氏自身が、必要な戦争として米軍の増派を進めている。しかし、状況は悪化の一途をたどっているように見える。

The Taliban, the Islamist militia that was driven from power, has re-established its presence in many parts of Afghanistan. The current Afghan government's ability to rule the nation has long been in serious doubt. Casualties are also mounting among the mainly European troops of the international force operating in Afghanistan on a peacekeeping mission. Many civilians have been killed by a series of mistaken bombings by coalition forces.
 政権を追われたタリバーンが勢力を盛り返した。現地政権の統治能力にはもともと疑問符がつく。欧州諸国などが派遣する国際部隊にも犠牲者が急増している。相次ぐ誤爆で多くの民間人が犠牲になってもいる。

Doubts are growing among the countries involved over continued deployment of their troops in Afghanistan. Britain and Germany have proposed an international conference to restore law and order in Afghanistan.
各国で駐留継続への疑問が高まり、英独両国は治安回復に向けた国際会議を提唱した。

There are also growing concerns both within and outside the United States that Afghanistan will become a replay of the Vietnam War, in which repeated troop increases failed to settle the situation and ended in a disgraceful withdrawal.
 部隊増派を繰り返しても結局解決できず、不名誉な撤退を強いられる。そんな「第二のベトナム化」の懸念さえ米国の内外で語られ始めている。

Rebuilding Afghanistan is one of the most intractable challenges confronting the world today. One thing, however, is clear. There is no way to defeat Muslim extremism without expanding dialogue with the world's Islamic communities.
 アフガニスタンをどう再建するか。いま世界が直面するもっとも難しい課題の一つだ。しかし、はっきりしていることがある。イスラム社会との対話を深めることなしに、イスラム過激主義にうち勝つ道は見いだせないということである。

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英会話・TOEIC

英語で考えよう

英語学習に王道はありません。
毎日毎日の地道な努力の積み重ねが必要です。
スラチャイが英語会話を学習したときには、下記のようなすぐれたシステムはありませんでしたが、NHKのラジオ英語会話で現在の英語会話力を身につけました。
今の人たちは教材にめぐまれていると思います。
一日僅か15分の学習でも数年継続すれば相当な学習効果が期待できます。
若い英語会話学習者の健闘を祈ります。

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教育・学校・資格・講座

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プロフィール

プロフィール

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[ 名前 ]
松井 清 (スラチャイ)

[ 略歴 ]
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[ 座右の銘 ]
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遅くとも着実な者が勝利する
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学習の手引き

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・Thinking in English.
・ネイティブ発音付き辞書活用
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English Newspapers

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朝日(社説)
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Phuket Gazette

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日航再建 外資導入で活路は開けるか

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 13, 2009)
Will foreign capital put JAL on road to recovery?
日航再建 外資導入で活路は開けるか(9月13日付・読売社説)

Japan Airlines, which is undergoing a restructuring program, has entered capital and business tie-up negotiations with major U.S. and European airlines.
 経営再建中の日本航空が、米欧の大手航空会社2社と資本・業務提携交渉に入った。

JAL is considering receiving capital investments from the United States' Delta Air Lines--the world's largest airline--and Air France-KLM--Europe's largest airline--as well as code-sharing on international routes.
 世界最大の航空会社である米デルタ航空と、欧州最大手のエールフランス―KLMから出資を受け、国際線の共同運航でも協力する方向だ。

If JAL reaches such deals, it would be the first time for the nation's flagship carrier to receive assistance from foreign airlines.
 交渉がまとまれば、日本を代表する航空会社が初めて外国の航空会社の支援を仰ぐことになる。

The net loss for JAL's group in the April-June period this year reached 99 billion yen. Its performance has deteriorated because of a decline in passenger numbers stemming from the downturn in the economy since last autumn and the spread of the new strain of influenza.
 日航は、昨年秋以降の景気低迷や新型インフルエンザ流行に伴う旅客減で業績が悪化し、今年4~6月期の最終赤字は990億円になった。

The group's net loss for the current fiscal year is expected to total 63 billion yen.
2010年3月期も630億円の赤字となる見通しだ。

In June, JAL managed to cover its capital shortfall through the receipt of 100 billion yen in bank loans, including a loan from the Development Bank of Japan. It was told, however, that it must undergo drastic restructuring if it were to become eligible for additional financing.
 6月には日本政策投資銀行など主要取引銀行から1000億円の融資を受け、資金不足を解消したが、追加融資は大胆なリストラが条件とされた。

===

Tie-ups to boost financial base

JAL, which is restructuring under the supervision of the Construction and Transport Ministry, has been instructed to present an outline of its new management improvement plan by the end of this month. The envisaged capital and business tie-ups with the two foreign carriers form a major component of this plan.
 日航は、国土交通省の監視下で9月末までに新たな再建策の提示を迫られている。2社との提携は、その柱として浮上した。

By accepting foreign investment, JAL will be able to strengthen its financial footing and find it easier to secure additional loans.
 外資を受け入れることで、財務基盤を強化し、追加融資を引き出しやすくする。

JAL also will attempt to make flying more convenient for passengers by joining arms and code-sharing with Delta and Air France-KLM, which have route networks in the United States and Europe, respectively.
 同時に、米欧に路線網を持つ2社と共同運航で手を組み、利用者の利便の向上を図る。

The Japanese airline also aims to slash costs by cutting unprofitable routes.
自前の不採算路線も廃止し、コストを削減する狙いがある。

JAL probably determined a foreign capital tie-up would be an opportunity to help it shake off its dependence on the government--an attribute particular to the airline.
 外資と提携することにより、日航特有の「親方日の丸」の体質を改める契機としたい、との判断もあろう。

The Civil Aeronautics Law, however, restricts the ratio of investment by foreign companies in JAL to less than one-third. Because the amount the two foreign carriers would invest is unknown, it is unclear how much such deals would help shore up JAL's balance sheet.
 だが、航空法の規定で、外資は日航に3分の1未満しか出資できない。2社の出資額も不明で、財務基盤の強化にどこまでつながるかの見通しも立っていない。

JAL also appears to be seeking tie-up partners other than Delta and Air France-KLM. It is predicted that the negotiation process for such alliances could run into difficulties.
 2社以外の提携相手を模索する動きもある。提携交渉の行方には曲折も予想される。

Cooperation from financial institutions is indispensable and JAL has to carry out further restructuring to receive such financial backing.
 取引先金融機関の協力も欠かせない。そのためには、日航の一層のリストラが求められる。

Starting in October, JAL plans to either abolish or reduce the number of flights on 16 domestic and international routes. It also will merge its unprofitable air cargo unit with NYK Line's unit. However, the effect of both measures in boosting profitability will be limited.
 日航は10月以降、国内外の16路線を廃止・減便し、不採算の航空貨物事業を日本郵船と統合する方針を打ち出したが、いずれも収益改善効果は限られている。

===

Uncertainty over pensions

The biggest issue now is uncertainty whether JAL will reduce the level of its corporate pension benefits.
 最大の課題は、企業年金給付の引き下げが不透明になっていることだ。

JAL would not be able to make an estimated cost reduction of 88 billion yen without slashing benefits. JAL should speed up its efforts to win over beneficiaries who oppose such cuts in their pensions.
実現しなければ880億円を見込むコストの削減が不可能になる。反対するOBらの説得を急ぐべきだ。

A proportion of loans extended to JAL is guaranteed by the government, and so if the airline fails with its restructuring program, it is taxpayers that will foot the bill.
 日航への融資の一部は国が返済を保証しており、再建に失敗すればそのツケは国民に回る。

The new Democratic Party of Japan-led administration, which is set to be inaugurated this week, has yet to clarify its stance on this issue. It must, however, tackle the reconstruction of JAL from the standpoint of protecting national interests.
今週発足する民主党新政権は、この問題への対応を明確にしていないが、国益を守る観点から日航再建に取り組む必要がある。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 13, 2009)
(2009年9月13日01時07分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月12日 (土)

オバマ大統領のスピーチ

オバマ大統領の医療保険改革に関する演説及び学生向けのスピーチについては、
一昨日、昨日とリアルタイムで掲載しましたが、
本日カプラン ジャパン代表石渡 誠先生のブログに、
これら二つの演説がyou tube で掲載されていました。
英語学習者にとって、またと無い学習の機会だと思います。
一時間、集中してヒアリングの能力を高めるようにしてください。

http://www.kaplan.ac.jp/ishiwata_blog/2009/09/post-124.html

石綿先生の略歴です。

カプラン ジャパン代表
Kaplan Japan President
石渡 誠 Makoto Ishiwata

南アラバマ大学 コミュニケーション学・英語学 学士号取得。
ジョージタウン大学院 英語教授法修士号 取得。
帰国後、松本亨高等英語専門学校を引き継ぎ、14年間のフィニックス英語学院の教務部長を経て、カプラン ジャパン代表就任。

スラチャイも石綿先生も松本亨先生の教えを受けて現在の英語力を身につけていますが、
石綿先生は私よりも数段上のレベルまで達せられています。
英語学習に終りというものはありません。
生涯、この険しい山を登り続けようと決意を新たにさせられました。

石綿先生、ありがとうございます。 (感謝をこめて)

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「H2B」1号機 打ち上げ成功で夢が膨らむ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 12, 2009)
Dreams soar with debut of H-2B rocket
「H2B」1号機 打ち上げ成功で夢が膨らむ(9月12日付・読売社説)

The launch of the newly developed H-2B No. 1 rocket went so well that we can now dare to dream that people could one day travel into space aboard the vehicle.
 人が乗って宇宙に行けそう――。そう思えるほど順調な飛(ひ)翔(しょう)だった。

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency on Friday successfully launched the domestically developed large rocket. Atop the rocket was an unmanned H-2 Transfer Vehicle (HTV) carrying supplies for the International Space Station; it was put into orbit successfully.
 宇宙航空研究開発機構が、国産の新鋭大型ロケット「H2B」1号機の打ち上げに成功した。
 国際宇宙ステーションへと向かう無人輸送機「HTV」も、予定通り軌道に投入できた。

The HTV is expected to arrive at the ISS in a week after having its orbit gradually adjusted by remote operation from Earth. However, it is too soon to celebrate just yet, as many tricky and delicate tasks must be completed before the vehicle successfully docks at the ISS and unloads its cargo.
 今後、地上からの遠隔操作で徐々に軌道を修正し、1週間かけてステーションに到着する。無事に荷物を届けられるか。山場はいくつもある。気は抜けない。

The H-2B is the largest domestically developed rocket, standing 56 meters tall and weighing 530 tons.
 H2Bは、全長56メートル、重さ530トンと、これまでの国産ロケットの中で最も大きい。

Jointly developed by JAXA and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd., the rocket is powered by two first-stage engines of the preceding H-2A model to provide more thrust than that model.
 宇宙機構と三菱重工業が共同開発した。大きな特長は、現在の主力ロケットH2Aの第1段エンジンを2基束ねて使い、打ち上げ能力を増やしたことだ。

Tapping existing technology helped keep a lid on the development costs of the H-2B--its 42 billion yen price tag is less than half that of the H-2A. Development went smoothly without major trouble.
 既存の技術を生かしたため、開発費は約420億円と、H2Aの半分以下で収まった。大きなトラブルもなく、順調に進んだ。

===

Solid track record

Friday's launch marked the nation's 10th straight success for large-size rockets, including H-2A rockets. This achievement proves that accumulating experience is crucial for such missions.
 大型ロケットの打ち上げ成功もH2Aを含めて、今回で連続10回を数える。
 経験を重ねることの重要性を物語る成果と言える。

A H-2B rocket will blast off for the ISS once a year as long as the space station remains in operation. H-2A rockets also will be used to launch satellites and space probe vehicles. This will go a long way to helping the nation achieve its long-cherished dream of receiving orders to launch commercial satellites of other nations.
 H2Bは今後も、ステーション運用期間中は毎年1回の打ち上げが続く。H2Aも、衛星や探査機の打ち上げに使われる。世界の商用衛星の打ち上げ受注も、長年の悲願となっている。

Going through data obtained in the latest launch with a fine-tooth comb will improve the credibility of Japanese rockets in the eyes of overseas observers.
 今回の打ち上げデータも十分に精査して、さらにロケットの信頼性を向上させるべきだ。

Expectations for Japan's transfer vehicles also are growing.
 輸送機への期待も高まる。

The HTV--10 meters long and 4.4 meters in diameter--is large enough to hold a bus inside. It weighs 16.5 tons.
 バスの車体がすっぽり入るくらい大きい。全長10メートル、直径4・4メートルで、総重量は16・5トンだ。

The vehicle this time is carrying food and daily necessities for astronauts staying on the ISS as well as laboratory equipment from Japan and the United States.
 今回は、ステーションに滞在中の宇宙飛行士の食料と生活物資のほか、日、米それぞれの実験装置を搭載している。

===

Ahead of the pack

U.S. space shuttles have played a central role in transporting supplies to the ISS. But the time for shuttles to retire is nearing, due to the huge maintenance costs needed to keep them spaceworthy.
 これまで、ステーションへの物資輸送の主役は米スペースシャトルだった。だが、維持費がかさみ退役の日が近づいている。

Russia and Europe have developed similar transport vehicles, but Japan's HTV can carry the largest loads. Whether the vehicle could successfully carry its cargo to the ISS therefore had set tongues wagging around the world.
 ロシア、欧州にも同様の輸送機はある。ただ、大型の機材を搭載できるのは、日本のHTVしかない。それだけに、輸送の成否は世界から注目されている。

The HTV has been designed to be as safe as a manned spaceship because when it docks with the ISS, astronauts will move in and out of the vehicle. JAXA officials have said they intend to use HTV technology in the development of the nation's first manned spaceship.
 HTVは、ステーションと結合後、宇宙飛行士が出入りする。このため、有人宇宙船並みの安全性を備えている。宇宙機構は、国産初の有人宇宙船開発にも、この技術を生かすという。

The launch of the H-2B rocket has ushered Japan's space technology into a new stage. We hope the new administration led by the Democratic Party of Japan also will help lay the foundation for further space technology development.
 今回の打ち上げで、日本の宇宙技術は新段階に入った。新政権のもとでも、宇宙技術の基盤作りをしっかり後押ししたい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 12, 2009)
(2009年9月12日01時20分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月11日 (金)

郵政民営化 利用者本位で問題点を改めよ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 11, 2009)
Fix postal service flaws from users' standpoint
郵政民営化 利用者本位で問題点を改めよ(9月11日付・読売社説)

We hope members of the envisaged coalition government will find the best way to make post offices more convenient and dependable hubs of local communities, while taking advantage of the benefits of postal service privatization.
 民営化の利点を生かしながら、郵便局がもっと便利で頼れる地域の拠点になるよう、知恵を絞ってほしい。

The Democratic Party of Japan, the Social Democratic Party and the People's New Party included a plan to drastically review privatization of postal services in the agreement they signed Wednesday to launch a coalition government next week.
 民主、社民、国民新の3党が、連立政権合意に郵政民営化の抜本見直しを盛り込んだ。

The three parties have agreed to freeze sales of stocks of Japan Post Holdings Co. owned by the government, and of stocks of Japan Post Bank Co. and Japan Post Insurance Co. owned by Japan Post Holdings Co. Furthermore, the parties agreed to review the four-unit postal system under the holding company.
 政府が保有する日本郵政の株式と、日本郵政が持つゆうちょ銀行とかんぽ生命保険の株式の売却を凍結する。さらに、持ち株会社の下に4事業会社を置く体制も含めて見直すという。

It is a fact that many people believe the privatization of postal services has made them rather inconvenient. In the past, you could ask a mail deliverer, who came to your home, to deposit money in your savings account at a post office. However, this has become impossible since privatization because postal and banking services are now provided by two different companies. No doubt some customers are left scratching their heads when they see the counters of Japan Post Network and Japan Post Service set side-by-side at some post offices.
 確かに、郵政民営化で「かえって不便になった」との声は多い。以前は配達に来た局員に、貯金を依頼できたが、郵便と貯金が別会社になってできなくなった。郵便局会社と郵便事業会社の窓口が併設され、戸惑うこともある。

Some people have complained they cannot collect registered mail at nearby post offices, which could not be delivered to their homes as they were out. Others insist they are waiting longer to be served at their post office since privatization.
 「不在のため配達員が持ち帰った書留を近所の郵便局で受け取れない」「窓口の待ち時間が長くなった」などの苦情も絶えない。

===

Preserve beneficial aspects

Inconveniences caused by the breakup and privatization of postal services must be remedied. We hope members of the envisaged government will take up nuisances and issues that have surfaced in the two years since privatization and review them from the standpoint of the customer--including the question of whether the four-unit Japan Post system is the best for end users.
 民営化と分社化で生じた不便は解消しなければならない。事業の4分社が利用者にとって最善の形なのかも含め、民営化から2年で起きた問題点を洗い出し、利用者の目線で見直してもらいたい。

A main pillar of the postal privatization was to shift money at Japan Post's financial arms from the public sector to the private sector to revitalize the domestic economy. We think this endeavor should be fiercely protected.
 とはいえ、資金の流れを「官から民へ」と変え、経済の活性化を図るという、民営化の「本丸」は守らねばならない。

Postal privatization is changing the long-time structure in which a massive amount of money that Japan Post's financial arms collect from the public by tapping the government's credibility is injected into companies and organizations where retired bureaucrats hold plum jobs.
 国の信用で集めた巨額の資金が役人の天下り先に流れる構造は、民営化によって改まってきた。

However, the Japan Post group, which is fully sponsored by the government, still wields the power to collect funds with the implicit state guarantee.
 しかし、郵政グループに政府が100%出資する現状では、「暗黙の政府保証」を背景とした強い集金力が残っている。

It is essential to sell all the stock of Japan Post Bank Co. and Japan Post Insurance Co. for a complete privatization that will not allow a government-sponsored megabank and insurance company to remain intact and weigh on the business of private companies.
 官製メガ銀行とメガ生保が温存され、民業圧迫が続く事態を避けるには、ゆうちょ、かんぽの金融2社の全株式を売却し、完全民営化することが肝要だ。

===

Lingering concerns

However, concerns linger that the management of these two companies after they are fully privatized might decide to terminate financial services in underpopulated communities.
 ただし、完全民営化後は、2社の経営判断で過疎地の金融業務が切り捨てられる恐れもある。

We think it better not to require these companies to offer nationally unified financial services because that would restrict their freedom of management. But by the same token, some policy measures will be needed to prevent the emergence of communities where no financial services are provided.
 経営の自由を縛る全国一律サービスの義務付けは避けたいが、「金融空白地」を生じさせないよう工夫する必要があろう。

Shortcomings in the postal service network also must be fixed.
 郵便網のほころびも修復しなければならない。

After privatization, some post offices that were not directly operated by the government were temporarily closed.
民営化後、簡易郵便局の一時閉鎖が相次いだ。

Although the number of these post offices has been arrested with the hike in fees Japan Post pays to entrust its services to agricultural cooperatives and other organizations, about 300 post offices remain shuttered. Surely something more can be done to improve this situation.
 農協などに業務を委託する際に払う手数料の値上げで、閉鎖の増加に歯止めはかかったが、まだ約300局が閉鎖中だ。さらに改善の余地はないだろうか。

DPJ President Yukio Hatoyama, prime minister in waiting, said he would continue to demand the resignation of Japan Post Holdings Co. President Yoshifumi Nishikawa, whose management responsibility has been brought into question over a series of scandals, including an aborted attempt to sell the Kampo no Yado resort inn network.
 民主党の鳩山代表は、かんぽの宿の売却で経営責任を問われた西川善文・日本郵政社長に辞任を求める考えを表明している。

Disruptions to postal services caused by privatization--including its management system--must be ironed out.
 経営体制も含めて、民営化のゆがみは正さねばならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 11, 2009)
(2009年9月11日01時14分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月10日 (木)

発信箱:特別な被害者=磯崎由美

(Mainichi Japan) September 9, 2009
Sex crime victims' courage to speak out may have led to severe sentence by lay judges
発信箱:特別な被害者=磯崎由美

Mika Kobayashi, who has publicly come out as a victim of a sex crime and told the public about her experience, recently sat in the gallery of the Aomori District Court to observe the first trial of a sex crime case in which lay judges participated.
 全国で初めて性犯罪を審理した青森地裁の裁判員裁判を、小林美佳さん(33)と傍聴した。ほとんどの人が声を上げられない中、小林さんは被害を実名で公表し、性被害に遭うということがどんなことかを伝えてきた。

One of the victims in the case that was being tried at the court expressed her opinions to professional judges as well as citizen judges from a separate room through a TV monitor. Her voice was quavering.
 別室にいる被害女性Aさんがモニターを通して意見陳述を始めた。涙で声が震える。

"It's tough because I've drawn attention from the public because lay judges are participating in my trial. But I dared to come to the courtroom because I wanted to communicate my pain to the public," the victim said in her statement.
「裁判員裁判だからと注目されて、すごくつらい。それでも法廷に来たのは、この苦しみをどうしても伝えたかったからです」。

Kobayashi was also weeping as she obviously remembered her experience.
小林さんも自分の事件の記憶がよみがえり、声を殺して泣いていた。

"Would you like to leave?" I asked Kobayashi in a note I handed to her.
私は筆談で「外に出ますか」と伝えた。

"The victim is also trying hard to endure it," Kobayashi replied in declining.
彼女は首を小さく横に振り、こう書いた。「Aさんが頑張っているんです」

Some people involved in the trial questioned prosecutors' description of the sexual assault, pointing out it was "excessively detailed."
 法廷で性暴力の詳細を明らかにした検察側を「そこまで言う必要があるのか」と疑問視する声もあった。
過剰と思える表現があったのは確かだ。

However, Kobayashi rejected the claim. "If you say such painful facts should not be described that far, then I can't help but have mixed feelings as a person who bears the burden of similar experiences. It'd make it increasingly difficult to talk about one's experience of falling victim to sex crimes," she said.
でも小林さんは悲しそうに言った。「そこまで言う必要がない痛々しい事実。そう言われると、その事実を背負って生きる者としては複雑です。性被害はますます語れないものになってしまう」

The two victims in the Aomori case still fear that their colleagues might find out that they fell victim to sex crimes. A society in which people fear that those surrounding them may discover that they are the victims in the cases and hesitate to report the incidents to police could be seen as only encouraging such crimes.
 どうして性被害は犯罪被害の中でも特別な存在になってしまうのだろうか。青森の事件の被害者は2人とも、事件のことを同僚に知られないかとおびえて暮らしているという。周囲の目を恐れ、警察に届け出ることもしづらい社会は、加害者が犯行を重ねていくのに都合よくできているとさえ思える。

The defendant in the Aomori case was sentenced to 15 years in prison, as demanded by prosecutors, apparently because the victims' courage to speak out about the incident appealed to the lay judges.
 求刑通り懲役15年の判決になったのは、勇気を振り絞り出廷した被害者の力だろう。

One of the citizen judges told reporters after the ruling, "Rulings on past similar cases appeared too lenient in my view."
裁判員の一人は記者会見で「従来の判決が低すぎたと感じた」と言った。

The lay judges' sincere attitude toward the trial could raise questions about whether judicial authorities had previously underestimated the graveness of sex crimes. (By Yumi Isozaki, Lifestyle News Department)
裁判員の真摯(しんし)さに思った。司法は性犯罪を軽く見てはいなかったかと。(生活報道部)

毎日新聞 2009年9月9日 東京朝刊

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3党連立合意 日米同盟の火種とならないか

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 10, 2009)
Coalition deal could shake alliance with U.S.
3党連立合意 日米同盟の火種とならないか(9月10日付・読売社説)

A major hurdle has finally been cleared for the launching of a new coalition cabinet under Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama, as the DPJ, the Social Democratic Party and People's New Party on Wednesday reached an agreement to form a coalition.
 鳩山連立内閣の発足に向けて、大きなハードルをようやく乗り越えた。民主、社民、国民新の3党が連立政権を樹立することで合意した。

Their policy agreement comprises 10 items, including a freeze on the consumption tax rate and a drastic review of postal-related services.
 政策合意の文書は、消費税率据え置き、郵政事業の抜本的見直しなど10項目で構成されている。

Regarding diplomatic and security issues, which were sticking points in talks for forming the coalition, the agreed document includes a review of the planned realignment of U.S. forces in Japan and the role of U.S. bases in Japan, as well as a proposal to revise the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement, all of which were requests by the SDP. The DPJ had been reticent about including these pledges in the agreement, but it ended up conceding after the PNP sided with the SDP.
 焦点の外交・安全保障政策では、社民党の求める「米軍再編や在日米軍基地のあり方の見直し」や「日米地位協定の改定の提起」が盛り込まれた。民主党は難色を示していたが、国民新党も社民党に同調し、押し切られた。

The new administration, however, could find itself tied to the specific wording of the document, and could hamper its relations with the United States. This could cause problems in the future.
 鳩山内閣は対米外交で、この連立合意に一定の縛りを受ける。将来の火種となりかねない。

===

Relocation plan already set

The U.S. government has said it will not renegotiate with Japan over a plan, agreed by both governments, to relocate the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station within Okinawa Prefecture. Though the prefectural government is calling for minor amendments, it has accepted the relocation plan within the prefecture as it has placed priority on an early return of the U.S. air base to Japan.
 米政府は、日米が合意した海兵隊普天間飛行場の沖縄県内移設計画の再交渉に応じない立場だ。沖縄県も、計画の微修正を求めつつ、飛行場の早期返還を優先して県内移設自体は容認している。

Is it really responsible for the government to call for a review of the relocation plan, which both the United States and local governments already have accepted, without offering any realistic alternatives? This also could damage the relationship of trust underlying the Japan-U.S. security alliance.
 現実的な代案もないまま、米側も地元自治体も納得している計画の見直しを提起することが、政府として責任ある態度だろうか。日米同盟の信頼関係も傷つく。

Such important issues as foreign and security policy affect the very foundation of the nation, and the DPJ must not concede these points so easily to the SDP out of concerns that not conceding could affect the cohesion of the coalition government.
 民主党は今後、連立政権の維持を優先するあまり、国家の基本にかかわる外交・安保政策などで、社民党に安易に妥協することを繰り返してはなるまい。

On the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling activities in the Indian Ocean, the SDP dropped its demand for the immediate withdrawal of the mission. But the DPJ still has no intention to extend the mission beyond its expiration in mid-January.
 インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動については、社民党が「即時撤退」との主張を取り下げたが、来年1月の活動期限を延長しない方向は変わっていない。

As alternatives to the refueling mission, the DPJ is considering such measures as increased humanitarian and reconstruction aid to Afghanistan.
 民主党は、給油活動の代案としてアフガニスタンへの人道復興支援の増額などを検討している。

But physical support in the form of MSDF personnel and financial support to Afghanistan should be seen as "two wheels on the same cart." Putting an end to physical support would be a big step backwards for Japan's international cooperation activities. The DPJ should reconsider the planned end of the MSDF mission.
 だが、海自の人的支援とアフガンへの資金支援は本来、「車の両輪」だ。人的支援がなくなることは、日本の国際協調行動の大きな後退を意味する。民主党は、海自の撤退を再考すべきだ。

===

Unbalanced influence?

During talks for forming the coalition, the three parties agreed to set up a consultation body of party leader-level cabinet members rather than a policy consultation body of the ruling parties as proposed by the SDP.
 連立協議では、社民党が求めていた与党の政策協議機関の代わりに、政府内に3党の党首級協議機関を設けることでも一致した。

The agreement is a compromise between the SDP, which wants to secure a say in the administration, and the DPJ, which intends to establish a system to unify decision-making functions in the cabinet without the involvement of ruling parties.
 政権内での発言権を確保したい社民党と、政策決定に与党が関与せず、内閣に一元化する体制を目指す民主党の折衷案である。

The worry is that the SDP and PNP might choose to stick to their guns on certain issues just to make their presence felt. This would certainly shake the DPJ-led administration. Indeed, there have been a number of coalition governments in the past in which junior partners have exerted control over the main coalition partner.
 今後、懸念されるのは、社民、国民新両党が存在感を示そうとして、独自の主張に固執し、政権を混乱させる事態だ。過去の連立政権でも、少数党が多数党を振り回した例が少なくない。

The SDP has emphasized an "equal" partnership among the three parties. But this concept lacks merit, given that the DPJ won 308 seats in the House of Representatives election compared with seven for the SDP and three for the PNP.
 社民党は「3党の対等な立場」を強調する。だが、民主党308、社民党7、国民新党3という衆院選の獲得議席数を踏まえれば、その主張には無理があろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 10, 2009)
(2009年9月10日01時08分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 9日 (水)

「25%削減」―実現へ説得力ある道筋を

--The Asahi Shimbun, Sept. 8(IHT/Asahi: September 9,2009)
EDITORIAL: Emission cut target
「25%削減」―実現へ説得力ある道筋を

Yukio Hatoyama, president of the Democratic Party of Japan who will become the next prime minister, pledged Monday his new administration's commitment to combating global warming at the Asahi World Environment Forum 2009, hosted by The Asahi Shimbun.
"I would like to hear people say that a regime change in Japan transformed the nation's policy on climate change and contributed to the future of humanity," he said.
 「日本の政権交代が気候変動対策に変化をもたらし、人類社会の未来に貢献したといわれるようにしたい」
 民主党の鳩山代表が、朝日新聞社主催の地球環境フォーラムで地球温暖化防止への新政権の強い決意を述べた。

The regime change is taking place amid the global attempt to create a new international framework that would replace the Kyoto Protocol on climate change. International negotiations will climax with the 15th Conference of the Parties (COP 15) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in December.
 今回の政権交代は、京都議定書に続く新しい国際的な枠組みづくりの時期と重なった。国際交渉は、12月の国連気候変動枠組み条約締約国会議(COP15)に向け大詰めを迎えつつある。

The toughest challenge is to overcome the huge gap that still lies between the world's advanced nations and newly emerging or developing nations. The advanced nations are under considerable pressure to carry the ball with bold action.
 最大の難問は、先進国と新興国・途上国との間に横たわる溝である。先進国は「率先して大胆な行動を」とさまざまな要求を突きつけられている。

It is of great significance that Hatoyama responded to the challenge by explicitly stating that Japan would aim to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from the 1990 level by 2020. This is a far more ambitious target than the 15-percent reduction from the 2005 level indicated three months ago by Prime Minister Taro Aso.
 これに応えて、鳩山氏が温室効果ガス削減について「2020年に90年比25%減」を目指すという日本の目標を明言した意義は大きい。3カ月前、麻生首相が表明した「05年比15%減」から大きく踏み出すものだ。

Hatoyama told the Asahi forum that once his administration is in place, he would announce a "Hatoyama initiative" for providing technical and financial aid to developing nations.
 取り組みが遅れている途上国への資金や技術の支援でも、政権発足後に「鳩山イニシアチブ」を打ち出す姿勢を表明した。

He also noted that the initiative will include assistance plans to reduce damage from global warming. This should greatly help Japan in its attempt to persuade newly emerging and developing nations to compromise so that a global accord can be forged.
温暖化の被害を軽減するための支援も盛り込む方針だという。新興国・途上国に、国際的な合意づくりのために歩み寄るよう求める重要な手がかりになるはずだ。

The message from Japan's next prime minister has made the world sense that Japan is about to seriously revise its approach to climate change.
 温暖化対策で、日本は変わる。そんな確かな予感を世界に抱かせる次期首相のメッセージである。

Japan is now basically falling in step with European nations. This should prompt the developed world to unite and aim for higher goals.
 こうした方針は欧州諸国と足並みをそろえるものであり、先進国が結束して高い目標に取り組むことも促すだろう。

This, in turn, could provide a needed tail wind for U.S. President Barack Obama, who is trying to persuade a cautious Congress.
慎重論が根強い議会を説得しているオバマ米大統領にとっても、追い風になるのではないか。

Once advanced nations start acting with purpose, China will no longer be able to keep dragging its feet. China and the United States together account for about 40 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions. The next climate change framework will be viable only if these two giants are fully on board.
 先進国が積極的になれば、中国も動かざるを得なくなる。中国と米国は世界の温室効果ガスの約4割を排出する。この2カ国を巻き込んで初めて、次の枠組みは実効性あるものになる。

But we cannot stress enough that Japan's target of a 25-percent reduction from the 1990 level will be difficult to attain. Stiff resistance from industry will be inevitable, as well as objections from people to various increased burdens that are expected.
 しかし重ねて強調したいのは、日本にとって「90年比25%減」という目標はそう簡単に実現できるものではないことだ。産業界からの反発は必至だ。様々な負担増が予想されるなか、国民からの異論もあろう。

It was probably for this very reason that Hatoyama stated, "We aim to achieve that goal through political will, by mobilizing all policy steps required."
だからこそ鳩山氏は「政治の意思としてあらゆる政策を総動員する」と力説したのだろう。

The new administration needs to swiftly formulate specific plans, such as those pertaining to the domestic emission credit trading market and climate change tax. It should prepare a clear road map for implementing each measure to reach the goal.
 どのようにこの目標を達成していくのか、新政権は国内排出量取引市場や地球温暖化対策税などの具体策を早急に詰める必要がある。そのうえでロードマップをつくり、ひとつずつ着実に実行していくべきだ。

We also remind the Hatoyama administration to have the wisdom to review some of its policies that could prove counterproductive to emission reductions--namely, the promised abolition of the temporary surcharge on gasoline and other taxes and the elimination of expressway tolls.
 同時に、ガソリン税などの暫定税率廃止や高速道路の無料化など、排出削減に逆行しかねない政策の賢い見直しも忘れないでもらいたい。

A U.N. climate change summit is scheduled for later this month, and Hatoyama reportedly intends to bring ambitious proposals to the table. But what he needs most is the sort of leadership that will enable him to persuade the Japanese people and build up a national consensus.
 今月下旬には国連で気候変動をめぐる首脳会合が予定されている。鳩山氏は野心的な提案をもっていく意向のようだが、肝心なのは国内世論を説得し、合意をつくり出す指導力である。

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G20―見えてきた新首相の課題

--The Asahi Shimbun, Sept. 8(IHT/Asahi: September 9,2009)
EDITORIAL: The G-20 summit
G20―見えてきた新首相の課題

Almost a year has passed since the collapse of U.S. investment bank Lehman Brothers, a development which threw the world economy into a "once-in-a-century" crisis. While the global recession is not yet over, signs of recovery are gaining momentum.
 世界経済を「100年に1度」といわれる危機に突き落とした米大手証券リーマン・ブラザーズの破綻(はたん)から間もなく1年。同時不況はなお続くが、回復への動きが強まりつつある。

In a meeting in London last week, finance ministers and central bank governors of the Group of 20 major economies stressed the effects of the actions their governments have taken in response to the crisis--fiscal stimulus packages worth 500 trillion yen in total and measures to support financial systems.
 ロンドンで開いた20カ国・地域(G20)の財務相・中央銀行総裁会議は、共同声明で「断固たる協調した政策措置が景気後退を止めた」と、総額約500兆円にのぼる財政出動などの対策と金融支援の成果をうたった。

"Our unprecedented, decisive and concerted policy action has helped to arrest the decline and boost global demand," the members said in a joint statement. The declaration reflects their confidence based on the fact that this new framework of international cooperation, which involves China and other emerging economies, succeeded in averting a replay of the Great Depression.
これは、世界恐慌の二の舞いを防ぐ上で中国などを含む新たな国際協調が成功をおさめたことへの自信の表れだ。

Leaders of the G-20 nations are slated to gather in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, later this month for a financial summit. Yukio Hatoyama, president of the Democratic Party of Japan, will attend the meeting as Japan's new prime minister. The London meeting offered some clues as to what Hatoyama should do at the Pittsburgh summit.
 再来週には米国ピッツバーグでG20首脳会合が開かれ、民主党の鳩山代表が新首相として出席する。新首相がそこで担うべき役割も、ロンドンの会議から見えてきた。

The communique, while claiming the global economy is improving, nevertheless said, "We will continue to implement decisively our necessary financial support measures and expansionary monetary and fiscal policies... ." That is precisely what the countries need to do, given the rising unemployment rate in the United States, Europe and Japan and the possibility that major economies could stall again if policy efforts are relaxed now.
 声明は、世界経済は改善しているが、「必要な金融支援措置および拡張的金融・財政措置の断固たる実施を継続する」とした。米欧や日本での失業率悪化や、対策の手を抜けば景気が再び失速する危険があることなどを考えれば当然のことだ。

Hatoyama needs to express his commitment to supporting policy cooperation among the G-20 nations and make a convincing explanation about how his party's election promises will stoke Japan's economic growth by expanding domestic demand.
 新首相は、G20の協調を力強く支えることを表明するとともに、総選挙で公約した諸政策の実施が内需拡大を通じて日本の成長につながることを説得力をもって説明しなければならない。

One defining theme of the Hatoyama government is structural reform of the state budget, as symbolized by the DPJ's pledge to cut public works spending to finance a new child allowance program. The DPJ claims its policy agenda as a whole is economically "neutral." But the initial effect could be fiscal tightening. Hatoyama should promise to the world that his priority will be on economic recovery.
 公共事業を削減して子ども手当を始めるなど、歳出構造の変換が新政権の看板のひとつだ。全体として景気に「中立的」とはいうが、当面の歳出は緊縮的に傾く恐れもある。景気最優先の運営を世界に約束する必要がある。

In addition to promising cooperation with the rest of the world in overcoming the global recession, Hatoyama should also make constructive proposals for preventing a similar crisis in the future.
 世界同時不況の克服に力を合わせるだけでなく、危機の再発防止に向けても積極的に発言したい。

Especially important is reining in the compensation of the CEOs of financial institutions. Blinded by the hefty bonuses offered as rewards for big profits, top executives of many financial institutions recklessly sold risky financial instruments. When their companies incurred heavy losses due to the financial collapse, they then turned to their governments for tax-funded bailouts. To ensure this won't happen again, nations need to effectively tighten financial regulations.
 とくに金融機関の経営者らの報酬規制は重要だ。高額報酬に目がくらんで金融商品を無謀なまでに売りまくり、バブル崩壊で損が出たら税金による救済にすがりつく。そうした事態を繰り返さないよう、各国がしっかりした金融規制に踏み切る必要がある。

In this regard, another key issue is how to bolster the capital bases of financial firms after the economy regains strength. There are detailed rules on the capital adequacy of banks. But the shadow banking system, which involves investment banks and other non-bank financial institutions, has not been subject to any effective regulations concerning their capital health. There are good reasons for imposing capital requirements on these institutions.
 再発防止策のもうひとつの柱は、景気回復後に金融機関の自己資本をどう増強するのか、という問題だ。これまで銀行には細かな規制があったが、証券会社などの「影の銀行」と呼ばれる部門は野放しだった。この部分の規制の強化も当然である。

Hatoyama will be in a position to make a meaningful contribution to international efforts to put the world economy back on track and establish a system to prevent a similar crisis from flaring. He can do so by speaking about Japan's experiences in dealing with the bad debt mess left by the collapse of its own bubble economy and about the process of restoring confidence in its financial system.
 新首相は、日本が経験した不良債権問題や金融システムの信頼回復の筋道を改めて世界に発信し、景気回復の機運作りと危機の再発防止策づくりに貢献できる立場にいる。

Reform of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank is also important for enhancing international cooperation for overcoming the current crisis and preventing a new one.
 国際通貨基金(IMF)や世界銀行の改革も、危機克服や再発防止への協調強化という観点から重要だ。

One major challenge is to give a bigger say to emerging and developing countries. Hatoyama should voice strong support to the idea at the Pittsburgh summit.
 新興国をはじめ途上国の発言権を拡大することが課題とされているが、その積極的な後押しをするという役割も求められる。

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社説:「鳩山内閣」人事 脱官僚が命運を握る

(Mainichi Japan) September 8, 2009
Fate of DPJ-led administration hinges on whether it can bring about reform
社説:「鳩山内閣」人事 脱官僚が命運を握る

Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) leader Yukio Hatoyama, who is set to be elected prime minister and launch his administration in mid-September, has selected candidates for key Cabinet ministers. Acting leader Naoto Kan will be named as deputy prime minister and state minister overseeing the National Strategy Bureau, while Secretary-General Katsuya Okada will be appointed as foreign minister. Hirofumi Hirano, a close aide to Hatoyama, will assume the post of chief Cabinet secretary.
 「鳩山内閣」の主要閣僚人事が固まってきた。鳩山由紀夫・民主党代表が選択した布陣は、副総理兼国家戦略局担当相に菅直人代表代行、外相には岡田克也幹事長、官房長官には鳩山氏の側近である平野博文役員室長をそれぞれ起用するというものだ。

DPJ chief election strategist Ichiro Ozawa is set to take the post of party secretary-general. Hatoyama has apparently decided to appoint influential DPJ members to key posts in his administration to wipe away the public's concern about the upcoming transfer of power while giving consideration to the balance between intraparty factions. His appointments should be regarded as appropriate.
先に決定した小沢一郎代表代行の幹事長就任も含め、鳩山氏は党内のバランスを考慮すると同時に、政権交代に対する国民の不安を解消するため、党内の実力者を配置したとみられる。まずは順当な人事といっていいのではないか。

Particularly noteworthy is the expected appointment of Kan as state minister in charge of the National Strategy Bureau. It will be the key government organization that the DPJ will set up to transform the bureaucrat-dominated government into one led by politicians. The bureau is supposed to draft the outline of state budget drafts and work out basic diplomatic policies. The fate of the new administration hinges on whether the bureau will properly function and fundamentally reform the policy-making process.
 中でも注目されるのは新しく設置する国家戦略局の担当相に菅氏が就任することだ。予算の骨格や政策の優先順位、外交の基本方針をこの新組織で決めるという戦略局は、「脱官僚主導」「脱官僚依存」を目指すという民主党の目玉組織であり、この新組織がうまく機能し、政策決定の仕組みを根本的に変えられるかどうかが、新政権の命運を握っているといってもいいからだ。

Since establishment of the bureau requires legal revisions, it will be officially launched after the Diet passes relevant bills into law at an extraordinary session to be convened in October. With the establishment of the bureau, the DPJ appears to be considering revamping the vertically divided administrative setup and transferring the authority to compile state budget drafts from the Finance Ministry to the prime minister's office. The party is studying a plan to appoint DPJ legislators, policymakers within the party, bureaucrats and experts in the private sector as well as local government heads, such as mayors and governors, to the new body
 戦略局の設置には法改正が必要で、実際に始動するのは10月召集予定の臨時国会で関連法が成立した後となり、具体的な制度設計もこれから詰めていくことになる。民主党は省庁の縦割り行政を改めると同時に、今の経済財政諮問会議は財務省主導だと総括し、同省の予算編成機能を官邸に移すことを考えているようだ。メンバーとして民主党の国会議員や党の政策スタッフ、官僚、民間の有識者に加え、自治体の首長らもかかわる構想が練られている。

Kan had served as health and welfare minister in the coalition government comprised of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the now defunct New Party Sakigake, and forced bureaucrats to uncover secret documents on mass infections of HIV through tainted blood products. He is expected to use his leadership ability to transform the bureaucrat-led government into one led by politicians. It is hoped that he will make full use of bureaucrats while working closely with Hatoyama.
 菅氏はかつて自社さ政権で厚相を務め、薬害エイズ問題ではそれまで隠されてきた関連資料を大臣主導で暴き出した経験を持つ。期待されているのはその突破力だろう。絶えず鳩山氏と連携を保ちながら、官僚の抵抗を排する、いや、官僚をしたたかに使いこなすことを目指してもらいたい。

Another focal point of the new administration is that Kan will double as chairman of the DPJ Policy Research Committee. His role is to reform the process of making policies through prior consultations between bureaucrats and LDP legislators who have influence at ministries and agencies concerned and ensure that the prime minister's office and the party will cooperate closely in working out policies.
 菅氏が党の政調会長を兼務するのも大きなポイントだ。そこには官僚と族議員の事前調整で実際の政策が決まってきた自民党政治の「二元構造」を転換し、首相官邸と党が一体となって政策決定を進めていく狙いがある。

Measures that a DPJ-led administration will take to transform the government into one led by politicians -- including abolition of meetings of administrative vice ministers at all ministries and agencies which had a huge influence on the Cabinet's decision-making -- should be highly appreciated.
閣議を事前に取り仕切ってきた事務次官会議の廃止などを含め、政治主導を目指して仕組みを変更していく点は大いに評価したい。

The DPJ will agree with the SDP and the People's New Party to form a coalition government and select candidates for all other Cabinet ministers before Hatoyama is elected prime minister at a special Diet session on Sept. 16.
 16日の首相指名選挙を前に、社民党、国民新党との連立協議をまとめる一方で、他の閣僚人事も決まっていきそうだ。

The DPJ's reforms will never be totally completed only by changing the system on the surface. The DPJ's goal of transforming the bureaucrat-dominated administration into one led by legislators means that each individual DPJ legislator's ability will be tested. Hatoyama is expected to proactively appoint not only veteran politicians but also capable younger legislators to important posts to achieve these reforms.
言うまでもなく仕組みを変えさえすれば済む話ではない。脱官僚を目指すということは、民主党の個々の議員の能力が試されるということだ。鳩山氏には、実力のある中堅や若手も積極的に登用してもらいたい。

毎日新聞 2009年9月8日 東京朝刊

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社説:「鳩山内閣」人事 脱官僚が命運を握る

(Mainichi Japan) September 8, 2009
Fate of DPJ-led administration hinges on whether it can bring about reform
社説:「鳩山内閣」人事 脱官僚が命運を握る

Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) leader Yukio Hatoyama, who is set to be elected prime minister and launch his administration in mid-September, has selected candidates for key Cabinet ministers. Acting leader Naoto Kan will be named as deputy prime minister and state minister overseeing the National Strategy Bureau, while Secretary-General Katsuya Okada will be appointed as foreign minister. Hirofumi Hirano, a close aide to Hatoyama, will assume the post of chief Cabinet secretary.
 「鳩山内閣」の主要閣僚人事が固まってきた。鳩山由紀夫・民主党代表が選択した布陣は、副総理兼国家戦略局担当相に菅直人代表代行、外相には岡田克也幹事長、官房長官には鳩山氏の側近である平野博文役員室長をそれぞれ起用するというものだ。

DPJ chief election strategist Ichiro Ozawa is set to take the post of party secretary-general. Hatoyama has apparently decided to appoint influential DPJ members to key posts in his administration to wipe away the public's concern about the upcoming transfer of power while giving consideration to the balance between intraparty factions. His appointments should be regarded as appropriate.
先に決定した小沢一郎代表代行の幹事長就任も含め、鳩山氏は党内のバランスを考慮すると同時に、政権交代に対する国民の不安を解消するため、党内の実力者を配置したとみられる。まずは順当な人事といっていいのではないか。

Particularly noteworthy is the expected appointment of Kan as state minister in charge of the National Strategy Bureau. It will be the key government organization that the DPJ will set up to transform the bureaucrat-dominated government into one led by politicians. The bureau is supposed to draft the outline of state budget drafts and work out basic diplomatic policies. The fate of the new administration hinges on whether the bureau will properly function and fundamentally reform the policy-making process.
 中でも注目されるのは新しく設置する国家戦略局の担当相に菅氏が就任することだ。予算の骨格や政策の優先順位、外交の基本方針をこの新組織で決めるという戦略局は、「脱官僚主導」「脱官僚依存」を目指すという民主党の目玉組織であり、この新組織がうまく機能し、政策決定の仕組みを根本的に変えられるかどうかが、新政権の命運を握っているといってもいいからだ。

Since establishment of the bureau requires legal revisions, it will be officially launched after the Diet passes relevant bills into law at an extraordinary session to be convened in October. With the establishment of the bureau, the DPJ appears to be considering revamping the vertically divided administrative setup and transferring the authority to compile state budget drafts from the Finance Ministry to the prime minister's office. The party is studying a plan to appoint DPJ legislators, policymakers within the party, bureaucrats and experts in the private sector as well as local government heads, such as mayors and governors, to the new body
 戦略局の設置には法改正が必要で、実際に始動するのは10月召集予定の臨時国会で関連法が成立した後となり、具体的な制度設計もこれから詰めていくことになる。民主党は省庁の縦割り行政を改めると同時に、今の経済財政諮問会議は財務省主導だと総括し、同省の予算編成機能を官邸に移すことを考えているようだ。メンバーとして民主党の国会議員や党の政策スタッフ、官僚、民間の有識者に加え、自治体の首長らもかかわる構想が練られている。

Kan had served as health and welfare minister in the coalition government comprised of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the now defunct New Party Sakigake, and forced bureaucrats to uncover secret documents on mass infections of HIV through tainted blood products. He is expected to use his leadership ability to transform the bureaucrat-led government into one led by politicians. It is hoped that he will make full use of bureaucrats while working closely with Hatoyama.
 菅氏はかつて自社さ政権で厚相を務め、薬害エイズ問題ではそれまで隠されてきた関連資料を大臣主導で暴き出した経験を持つ。期待されているのはその突破力だろう。絶えず鳩山氏と連携を保ちながら、官僚の抵抗を排する、いや、官僚をしたたかに使いこなすことを目指してもらいたい。

Another focal point of the new administration is that Kan will double as chairman of the DPJ Policy Research Committee. His role is to reform the process of making policies through prior consultations between bureaucrats and LDP legislators who have influence at ministries and agencies concerned and ensure that the prime minister's office and the party will cooperate closely in working out policies.
 菅氏が党の政調会長を兼務するのも大きなポイントだ。そこには官僚と族議員の事前調整で実際の政策が決まってきた自民党政治の「二元構造」を転換し、首相官邸と党が一体となって政策決定を進めていく狙いがある。

Measures that a DPJ-led administration will take to transform the government into one led by politicians -- including abolition of meetings of administrative vice ministers at all ministries and agencies which had a huge influence on the Cabinet's decision-making -- should be highly appreciated.
閣議を事前に取り仕切ってきた事務次官会議の廃止などを含め、政治主導を目指して仕組みを変更していく点は大いに評価したい。

The DPJ will agree with the SDP and the People's New Party to form a coalition government and select candidates for all other Cabinet ministers before Hatoyama is elected prime minister at a special Diet session on Sept. 16.
 16日の首相指名選挙を前に、社民党、国民新党との連立協議をまとめる一方で、他の閣僚人事も決まっていきそうだ。

The DPJ's reforms will never be totally completed only by changing the system on the surface. The DPJ's goal of transforming the bureaucrat-dominated administration into one led by legislators means that each individual DPJ legislator's ability will be tested. Hatoyama is expected to proactively appoint not only veteran politicians but also capable younger legislators to important posts to achieve these reforms.
言うまでもなく仕組みを変えさえすれば済む話ではない。脱官僚を目指すということは、民主党の個々の議員の能力が試されるということだ。鳩山氏には、実力のある中堅や若手も積極的に登用してもらいたい。

毎日新聞 2009年9月8日 東京朝刊

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CO2削減目標 25%のハードルは高過ぎる

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 9, 2009)
DPJ's goal of 25% cut in emissions too ambitious
CO2削減目標 25%のハードルは高過ぎる(9月9日付・読売社説)

How will the nation's new government build a fair framework to reduce carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions, making use of lessons learned from the Kyoto Protocol? The new administration's ability to handle this matter will come under close scrutiny.
 京都議定書の教訓を生かし、二酸化炭素(CO2)など温室効果ガスの排出を削減する公平な枠組みをどう築くのか。新政権の力量が厳しく問われることになる。

Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama said in a speech Monday that the nation's midterm target would be to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from 1990 levels by 2020. Hatoyama said he would announce the plan at the climate change summit at the United Nations later this month.
 民主党の鳩山代表が講演で、2020年までの温室効果ガス削減の中期目標について、「1990年比25%削減」を言明した。近く国連の気候変動に関する首脳級会合で表明するという。

With a view to the post-Kyoto Protocol agreement for which the negotiation deadline is the end of this year, Hatoyama urged other major countries to agree on ambitious reduction targets. He said such an accord among all major countries will be a precondition for Japan's new pledge to the international community.
 鳩山代表は、今年末に交渉期限を迎える「ポスト京都議定書」を念頭に、「すべての主要国の参加による意欲的な目標の合意が、我が国の国際社会への約束の前提となる」と述べた。

We believe it was quite right for Hatoyama to have said that the nation would start tackling the 25 percent reduction target only after all the major greenhouse gas emitters, including the United States and China--the world's two largest greenhouse gas producers, make efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
 米国、中国の2大排出国など、主要排出国の削減努力があって初めて「25%減」に取り組むとしたのは、当然のことといえる。

As for convincing the world's major countries to participate in efforts to address global warming, however, Hatoyama himself must press other countries to take action through summit meetings and other occasions. In particular, he has to persuade China, which has refused to shoulder any numerical emission-reduction obligations, in cooperation with other industrialized countries.
 そのためには、鳩山代表自身、首脳会談などで各国に強く働きかけていくべきだ。特に、削減の数値目標を課されるのを拒む中国に対しては、他の先進国と連携して説得することが求められる。

===

Hatoyama overreaching

Above all, is the goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from 1990 levels an appropriate target? Hatoyama's proposal is expected to fuel debate across Japan. The proposal translates into a 30 percent emission cut compared with 2005 levels, far higher than the reduction goals set by the United States and the European Union of 14 percent and 13 percent, respectively.
 それにしても、「90年比25%減」は妥当なのか。今後、国内議論が活発化するだろう。05年比に直すと30%減の削減率に当たり、米国の14%減、欧州連合(EU)の13%減より大幅に高い。

Because the target is expected to require strict regulations on greenhouse gas emissions, the proposal has drawn strong objections from the industrial sector, mainly out of concerns that it would have an adverse effect on the economy.
 厳しい排出規制が必要になるため、産業界には「景気に悪影響を及ぼす」といった反発が強い。

According to a projection by the Cabinet of Prime Minister Taro Aso, the country's households will end up having to spend 360,000 yen more a year for the country to meet the 25-percent reduction goal.
「家計の負担が年36万円増加」といった麻生内閣の試算もある。

Once Hatoyama announces the plan at the U.N. meeting, it is highly likely to become the minimum reduction goal to be imposed in an international accord that will take the place of the Kyoto Protocol. The new government is advised to avoid having the plan become Japan's international pledge at this stage, when no domestic agreement has yet been reached.
 国連で公言すれば、「ポスト京都」で日本に課せられる削減義務の最低線になる可能性が高い。国内合意がないまま、国際公約とすることは避けるべきだ。

===

Effect difficult to gauge

What kind of impact will the plan have on people's livelihoods? Hatoyama must thoroughly explain this point to the public first.
 国民生活にどんな影響が生じるのか。鳩山代表はまず、それを丁寧に説明しなければなるまい。

In the case of the 25 percent reduction target, it remains unclear how much will be reduced through domestic efforts.
 25%の削減のうち、「真水」といわれる国内削減分がどの程度なのかも、はっきりしない。

Currently, Japan has been finding it difficult to achieve the Kyoto Protocol goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 6 percent from 1990 levels by 2012. In order to make up for shortfalls to meet the target, the government plans to purchase emissions quotas from other countries. The amount of emissions quotas to be purchased is said to total about 200 billion yen.
 日本は、京都議定書で課せられた90年比6%の削減ですら難しい状況にある。削減の不足分を補うため、海外から排出枠を購入して帳尻を合わせる方針だ。その額は約2000億円とされる。

Such an ill-advised policy must not be repeated in the framework of the post-Kyoto Protocol agreement.
 「ポスト京都」では、こうした愚策を続けてはなるまい。

Hatoyama stated that industrialized countries should provide financial and technical assistance to developing countries striving to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
 鳩山代表は「削減に努める途上国に対して、先進国は資金的、技術的な支援を行うべきだ」と述べた。

The energy-saving technology that has been developed and fostered in Japan will serve as important tools to help the entire world cut greenhouse gas emissions.
日本が培ってきた省エネ技術は、世界全体の排出削減の有力な手段となり得るであろう。

What Japan has to do is not set a high reduction goal, but contribute by helping other countries slash emissions through realistic measures.
 高い削減目標より、現実的な施策で世界の排出削減に貢献する。それが日本がなすべきことだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 9, 2009)
(2009年9月9日01時13分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 8日 (火)

新内閣骨格人事 政権引き継ぎを円滑に進めよ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 8, 2009)
Smooth transfer of power essential
新内閣骨格人事 政権引き継ぎを円滑に進めよ(9月8日付・読売社説)

The main lineup of the new cabinet in the administration of incoming Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama has been decided. Preparations need to be expedited so that the transfer of power can be smoothly realized in the launch of the new administration next week.
 鳩山新内閣の主要閣僚人事が固まった。来週の発足に向けて、円滑な政権引き継ぎができるよう準備を急いでほしい。

Democratic Party of Japan Acting President Naoto Kan will be appointed state strategy minister, a post to which DPJ President Yukio Hatoyama attaches the greatest importance. Party Secretary General Katsuya Okada and Hirofumi Hirano, head of the DPJ executives' secretariat, will assume the posts of foreign minister and chief cabinet secretary, respectively. DPJ Supreme Adviser Hirohisa Fujii is expected to be named finance minister.
 民主党の鳩山代表が最も重視する国家戦略相には、菅直人代表代行が決まった。外相は岡田克也幹事長、官房長官は平野博文役員室担当が就任する。財務相は藤井裕久最高顧問の起用で調整が進んでいる。

The new cabinet is expected to tackle a number of difficult problems, but the business of governing the country requires constant effort and attention. Because the new cabinet is expected to include many who have no cabinet experience, there are both expectations of and anxieties about the incoming administration.
 新内閣には多くの難題が待ち構えている。行政の停滞は許されない。新内閣は、閣僚経験のない大臣が大半を占める見通しであり、期待と不安が交錯する。

Because the sources of revenue to fund the child allowance program and other new policies still remain uncertain, how will the new government compile the fiscal 2010 budget while paying attention to economic stimulus measures? How will it deal with the U.N. General Assembly and the Group of 20 financial summit scheduled for later this month?
 子ども手当など新規政策の財源が不明確な中、景気対策に目配りしつつ、来年度予算をいかに編成するのか。今月下旬の国連総会や金融サミットにどう臨むのか。

To minimize confusion after its launch, the new cabinet needs to make effective use of the run-up period prior to the special Diet session on Sept. 16 and coordinate policies both within the party and with other parties.
 政権発足後の混乱を最小限にするには、16日の特別国会召集までの助走期間を有効活用し、党内外の政策調整を行う必要がある。

===

Setting priorities

It is important to closely examine the party's election pledges and prioritize them on the basis of how urgent the need is for their implementation.
 重要なのは、政権公約の内容を精査し、早急に実行する政策の優先順位を決めることだ。

It will not be acceptable for the new government to waste time in setting up new organs, such as the national strategy bureau that will be under the direct control of the prime minister, and reviewing the rules governing the interaction between policymakers and bureaucrats, consequently delaying the undertaking of the cabinet's essential tasks.
 首相直属の国家戦略局など新機関の設置や政官関係のルール見直しに手間取り、内閣本来の業務が滞るようでは困る。

It is desirable for the new government to hold detailed discussions to the greatest extent possible not only on personnel affairs concerning high-ranking government officials but also new systems and rules before it takes office.
政府高官人事は無論、新たな制度やルールについても、政権発足前に極力詰めておくことが望ましい。

The national strategy bureau, to be headed by Kan, will assume the role of drawing up principles for drafting the budget and charting the broad outlines of foreign policy, in addition to comprehensively coordinating policies.
 菅氏がトップとなる国家戦略局は、予算編成方針や外交ビジョンの策定のほか、政策の総合調整の役割を担う。

The bureau will also act as the control tower for the new government to carry out the DPJ policy of ending the deference of the nation's political circles to bureaucrats.
民主党の掲げる「官僚依存政治からの脱却」を実現する司令塔ともなる。

===

Tackling the bureaucracy

Kan dealt with problems caused by HIV-tainted blood products as health and welfare minister in the coalition government of the Liberal Democratic Party, the Social Democratic Party and New Party Sakigake (Pioneers). Subsequently, as an opposition member, he pursued various other problems, such as wasteful spending by bureaucrats and the so-called amakudari practice in which retiring high-ranking government officials take up lucrative jobs at agencies and other organizations they previously dealt with while public servants. Hatoyama decided to give the new post to Kan, apparently concluding that he is suited to reforming Kasumigaseki, the center of the country's bureaucracy.
 菅氏は、「自社さ」政権の厚相として「政治主導」で薬害エイズ問題に取り組んだ。その後の野党時代も、国会で官僚による無駄遣いや天下りを追及してきた。霞が関改革に適任との判断だろう。

We have no objections to "politician-led" politics and drastically cutting wasteful spending, but what is needed now is not playing to the gallery by bashing bureaucrats as opposition party members often do, but ideas and strategies to put bureaucrats under the government's control.
 「政治主導」やムダな支出の徹底削減に異論はないが、求められるのは、野党的な官僚たたきのパフォーマンスではなく、官僚をきちんと使いこなす発想だ。

Okada, who is to assume the post of foreign minister, is well-versed in policy and has built personnel connections in the United States and other countries through his visits overseas. On the other hand, as he is often derided as a fundamentalist, some have voiced concerns over rigidity in his policies.
 外相に起用される岡田氏は、政策通のうえ、外遊を通じて米国をはじめ各国に人脈を築いてきた。一方で、「原理主義者」と揶揄(やゆ)されるように、政策面の硬直性を心配する向きもある。

As for the new government's diplomatic policies, concerns have been expressed over Japan-U.S. relations because of the DPJ's coalition with the SDP and Hatoyama's recent op-ed piece published in The New York Times that caused a stir by expressing views that appeared to be critical of the United States.
 新政権の外交政策では、社民党との連立に加えて、「反米的」とも評された鳩山論文の影響などから対米関係が懸念されている。

If Japan-U.S. relations became unstable, it will cast a shadow on the Asia-oriented diplomacy the DPJ emphasizes. It will be necessary for the new government to pay careful attention to building a relationship of trust between Japan and the United States.
 日米同盟が不安定化すれば、民主党の重視するアジア外交にも悪影響を及ぼす。新政権は、日米の信頼関係の構築に十分留意することが必要だろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 8, 2009)
(2009年9月8日01時12分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 7日 (月)

税制改正 財源確保に道筋をつけよ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 7, 2009)
DPJ must ensure it can pay for its tax policy
税制改正 財源確保に道筋をつけよ(9月7日付・読売社説)

The imminent birth of a government led by the Democratic Party of Japan will mark the start of great changes to the nation's taxation system--changes that will directly impact our daily lives.
 暮らしに直結する税金の仕組みが、民主党政権の誕生で大きく変わることになりそうだ。

In its manifesto for the Aug. 30 House of Representatives election, the DPJ said it would abolish income tax deductions for spouses and dependents, and drastically review special tax exemption measures currently in place, including some corporate tax breaks.
 民主党は政権公約で、所得税の配偶者控除と扶養控除の廃止や、法人税の優遇などを含む租税特別措置の抜本見直しを打ち出している。

This amounts to a de facto tax increase by the DPJ, which is trying to secure a revenue stream to finance the party's much publicized child-allowance scheme.
 公約の目玉である「子ども手当」の財源を確保するための事実上の増税だ。

Simply reading the party's manifesto does not give us a clear picture of how the burden of individual households and corporations will change.
だが、個々の世帯や企業の負担がどう変わるのか、公約だけではよく分からない。

The DPJ must immediately set about deciding which parts of the current tax system should be revised, so it can provide the public with concrete details of its new tax system.
民主党は早急に改正点の検討に入り、具体像を示すべきだ。

===

All give and no take

The DPJ will need to rake in annual revenue of 5.3 trillion yen to enable it to distribute the 26,000 yen a month per child it promised to give households with children of middle school age or younger. For the first year, the DPJ will pay out only half the allowance. The party also has stated it will not abolish the tax deductions currently in place until fiscal 2011.
 中学生以下の子ども1人に月2万6000円の手当を配るには、5・3兆円の財源が要る。民主党は来年度は支給を半額にとどめ、控除見直しは2011年度に先送りする方針だ。

In pressing ahead with its plan to introduce the child rearing allowances before abolishing some tax deductions, the party presumably has an eye on meeting its campaign promises to make sure it can claim an achievement in the run-up to next year's House of Councillors election.
 手当の支給を先行させ、来年の参院選に向けた実績としたいのだろう。

However, if the party avoids asking the public to accept an increased tax burden, painful to voters, and in doing so postpones the introduction of measures that are needed to secure revenue sources it will not be able to be judged as having met its election pledges.
しかし、痛みを伴う財源確保を後回しにするのでは、真の公約実現とは言えまい。

The abolition of deductions should be discussed when drawing up tax revisions for next fiscal year, which come at the year's end, to ensure they are ready to be introduced.
 控除の見直しは年末の来年度税制改正で議論し、できる限り詰めておく必要がある。

The across-the-board child-rearing allowances has come in for some criticism, with some saying the system should be income-tested. If necessary, the party should not hesitate to change the amount, the period for which it is handed out and the method by which the allowances are distributed.
子ども手当に対しては、「支給に所得制限を設けるべきだ」との声もある。必要なら額や支給時期、方法の見直しもためらうべきではなかろう。

There are about 300 items covered by the special tax exemption measures, and that is regarding national taxes alone. The total value of the tax breaks comes to 7.3 trillion yen.
 租税特別措置は国税分だけで約300項目、減税の総額は7兆3000億円にのぼる。

The tax breaks were effectively introduced as temporary measures, taken to achieve such things as the promotion of certain industries, but quite a few measures were then extended despite their original purposes being fulfilled.
産業振興などを図る一時的な措置だが、目的を終えてずるずる延長されている措置も多い。

Indeed, it is important to review such measures to ascertain their purposes and necessity. However, the termination of even opaque measures does not guarantee that new revenue sources will immediately be created.
 政策目的や必要性をもう一度洗い直す意義はある。しかし、不透明な措置を打ち切れば、ただちに財源が生まれるわけではない。

A good sum of income from taxes could be generated if special measures that involve the granting of large tax cuts are terminated. However, suspension of such a large tax break also will have a sizable negative impact.
 減税規模の大きい特別措置をやめればまとまった税収が入るが、そうした措置ほど影響は大きい。

Some measures were introduced to aid the socially vulnerable, such as making interest on the savings of disabled people exempt from tax, and to spur economic growth, such as tax breaks for investment in facilities by mid- and small-sized companies.
障害者の預金利子の非課税など弱者に配慮した措置や、中小企業への設備投資減税など景気対策を担う措置もある。

It may be necessary for the new administration to make some of the special tax measures permanent if it determines they should be maintained. The DPJ should not forcibly cancel any tax break solely on the basis of prioritizing the securing of revenues over all other considerations.
 存続が必要なものは、本則として位置づけし直すことも必要になろう。財源確保ありきでの強引な打ち切りは慎むべきだ。

===

New procedure for tax changes

The DPJ also plans to change the mechanism by which tax system revisions are made. Until now, the government's Tax Commission and the ruling Liberal Democratic Party's Research Commission on Tax System concurrently have been steering tax-related policies. The DPJ is to integrate the works under a new governmental tax panel to be created within the government. The new tax commission most likely will comprise only Diet members.
 民主党は税制決定の仕組みも見直す方針だ。これまでは政府と与党の税制調査会が並立していたが、今後は政府内に設ける新政府税調に一元化する。新税調は国会議員で構成される見通しだ。

Since tax revisions will affect the interests of a wide array of people and companies, the DPJ must listen extensively to concerns and demands of as many of the concerned parties as possible.
 多くの人や企業の利害を左右する税制改正では、幅広く要望を聞くことが肝要だ。

If the new government already only has a few months left to study and decide on its tax system revisions for next fiscal year. As soon as prime minister-in-waiting Yukio Hatoyama launches his new cabinet, he must pull it into shape and ensure it gets straight to work on the matter.
新組織で来年度改正に取り組むなら、残された時間は少ない。新内閣の発足後、すみやかに新たな体制をつくらねばならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 7, 2009)
(2009年9月7日01時18分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 6日 (日)

公明党敗北 出直しに与党経験を生かせ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 6, 2009)
For New Komeito a time to reflect, rebuild
公明党敗北 出直しに与党経験を生かせ(9月6日付・読売社説)

The two highest-ranking members of New Komeito--its leader and secretary general--lost their seats in last Sunday's House of Representatives election, marking the most crushing defeat for the party since its foundation.
 総選挙の結果は、党首と幹事長のトップ2人が共に落選するという、結党以来かつてない惨敗である。

It should now calmly examine the causes of its defeat and learn lessons from it for its renewal.
敗因を冷静に分析し、再出発の糧としなければならない。

All eight Komeito candidates fielded in single-seat constituencies lost their seats and the party won 21 seats in the proportional representation section of the election, which is fewer than the 25 seats it gained in the 1967 lower house election, the first lower house poll in which Komeito participated. It is no exaggeration to say the party is now facing its greatest crisis.
 公明党は、8人の小選挙区候補が全員落選し、比例選のみで獲得した21議席は、衆院に初めて進出した1967年衆院選の25議席を下回った。最大の危機に直面していると言っても誇張ではない。

Natsuo Yamaguchi, chairman of the party's Policy Research Council, is expected to become the new party leader. What he and the new leadership must do first is rebuild the party ahead of the House of Councillors election next summer.
 新代表には山口那津男政調会長が就任する見通しで、新執行部の最初の仕事は、来年夏の参院選に向けた体制立て直しだ。

===

Tied to falling LDP

There is no doubt that the resounding defeat of Komeito--which has a solid support base in lay buddhist organization Soka Gakkai--is due to the strong headwind of voter dissatisfaction that blew against the Liberal Democratic Party. Komeito was effectively toppled with its coalition partner.
 創価学会という強固な支持基盤を持つ公明党が大敗したのは、自民党への強い逆風のあおりをまともに受けたためであることは間違いない。

Komeito garnered about 8.05 million votes in the proportional representation section of the election, about 700,000 to 900,000 votes fewer than it achieved in the previous two polls. The party's defeat may also be attributed to the fact that the party was not able to collect many votes cast by supporters of the LDP this time.
 比例選の得票が約805万票にとどまり、過去2回と比べて70万~90万票も減った。連立相手の自民党支持層からの得票が伸び悩んだことも、敗因の一つだろう。

Moreover, it is undeniable that the election result was partly due to the fact that Komeito was tarred with the same brush as the scandal-hit LDP. Komeito was unable to promote itself as a unique party, finding that it had slowly been cast into oblivion over the past decade spent as the LDP's junior coalition partner.
 それ以上に、10年にわたる自民党との連立政権下で、公明党がその持ち味を発揮できずに埋没した揚げ句、不祥事続きの自民党と同列視されたことが影響した面も否めない。

Komeito apparently had some problems in deciding on its policies. For example, the party always took a reluctant stance toward the utilization of the Self-Defense Forces at key moments, including the Afghan and Iraq wars launched after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States, because they succumbed to the deep-rooted "nonmilitarism and peace" orientation of Soka Gakkai members.
 政策対応にも、問題はなかったか。例えば、米同時テロ後のアフガン戦争やイラク戦争といった節目で、創価学会員に根強い「非軍事・平和」志向に押されるまま、自衛隊の活用に常に消極的な姿勢を取った。

It was Komeito that took the initiative in realizing the flat-sum cash benefit program on which the administration of Prime Minister Taro Aso spent a hefty 2 trillion yen. However, the program has had a limited effect in terms of stimulating the economy and was criticized as pork-barreling.
 麻生政権が2兆円もの巨費を投じた定額給付金は、公明党が主導したものだ。景気刺激効果は限定的と言われ、バラマキ的政策と批判を浴びた。

During the final stage of the administration of former Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda, senior Komeito members made remarks that could be construed as calling for Fukuda to be replaced. Some observers also have pointed out that Komeito grew conceited due to its increased influence over the LDP it achieved through vital support it gave the LDP in elections.
 福田政権の末期には、党幹部から「福田降ろし」を促すかのような発言もあった。選挙支援を通じて自民党への影響力を強めたことで、驕(おご)りとも言える対応が増えたという指摘もある。

On the other hand, the experience gained by Komeito during its time in the LDP-Komeito coalition must surely be a valuable asset. Previously in perpetual opposition as a force that only criticized the ruling party, Komeito's time in power has made it aware of the political responsibilities of a ruling party, and has given it experience in planning and implementing realistic policies and formulating foreign and national security policies from a global standpoint.
 反面、自公政権下の経験は、批判勢力としての万年野党的立場から、政権与党としての政治責任の自覚、現実的政策の立案や遂行、国際的視野での外交・安全保障政策への対応などの面で、貴重な財産になったのではないか。

===

Avoid cozying up to DPJ

We hope Komeito will rebuild itself by studying and drawing on its experiences as a ruling coalition party, which are formed of both good and bad aspects.
 功罪両面を持った連立与党経験を検証した上で、党再建につなげてもらいたい。

Komeito likely will adopt an issue-by-issue stance toward the Democratic Party of Japan, but it must avoid the foolish act of snuggling up to the new administration without first considering its policies.
 民主党には、是々非々の姿勢で臨む方針のようだが、政策抜きで政権にすり寄る愚は避けなければなるまい。

Komeito must act with courage in taking policies to the public, even if they might cause an increased burden, and convince them of the need for hard-to-sell policies rather than pandering to populism.
 大衆迎合に陥らず、痛みを伴う政策への理解を国民に求める勇気と説得力が必要だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 6, 2009)
(2009年9月6日01時21分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 5日 (土)

小沢民主幹事長 試される鳩山代表の統率力

Yomiuri Shinbun より抜粋
翻訳、通訳、どちらも専門用語をしっかり覚えていなければ役目を果たせません。
その意味で英和辞典も必要です。
英英辞典だけにすべきだという人もいますが、
達成目的によって使い分けるべきだと思います。

大臣、ministers,
副大臣、vice ministers,
政務官、parliamentary secretaries,
大臣補佐官、advisers to ministers
secretary general、 幹事長

専門用語は予習をしっかりしておかないと本番ではじをかくことになります。
(スラチャイ)

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 5, 2009)
Ozawa will test Hatoyama's mettle
小沢民主幹事長 試される鳩山代表の統率力(9月5日付・読売社説)

Acting Democratic Party of Japan President Ichiro Ozawa is set to become the party's secretary general, a crucial position at the heart of the administration to be inaugurated under prime minister in waiting Yukio Hatoyama.
 鳩山新政権の要である民主党幹事長に、小沢代表代行が就任することになった。

Hatoyama, who is DPJ president, has been at pains to explain that he appointed Ozawa because he guided the DPJ to a landslide victory in the House of Representatives election Sunday.
"We managed to win more than 300 seats thanks to Acting President Ozawa," Hatoyama said.
 鳩山代表は、「小沢代行のお陰で300を超える議席を得た」として、衆院選を指揮した小沢氏の功労に応えたものと強調した。

Of course, this cannot be the only reason for his appointment.
 無論、それだけではない。

Hatoyama apparently plans to put Ozawa in charge of the DPJ campaign for next summer's House of Councillors election so the party can snatch a single-party majority in the upper house and form an administration that can hold sway over both chambers of the Diet.
 来年夏の参院選対策を引き続き小沢氏に委ね、参院でも単独過半数を制し、本格政権を樹立させる狙いだろう。

The DPJ has grown into a political juggernaut holding a total of nearly 420 seats in the upper and lower houses. Hatoyama seems to believe that he needs the influence and experience of Ozawa, who once served as secretary general of the Liberal Democratic Party, to ensure all the members of the big party keep pulling in the same direction.
 民主党は、衆参両院で420近い議席を持つ大所帯になった。巨大政党を束ねるには、自民党でも幹事長を務めた小沢氏の力量と経験に頼らざるを得ない、との判断もあったとみられる。

However, Ozawa's appointment as DPJ secretary general also has raised some concerns in the political arena.
 だが、小沢氏の起用には、懸念も指摘されている。

===

New kids on the block

The ranks of Ozawa supporters within the DPJ have swollen with the arrival of dozens of rookie candidates--dubbed "Ozawa kids" because he managed their nominations and campaign preparations--in the last election. Some observers have suggested Ozawa could end up wielding too much influence over the management of party affairs.
 「小沢チルドレン」とも言われる新人の大量当選で、グループ勢力を膨張させた小沢氏が、党運営で過大な影響力を行使するようになるのでは、というわけだ。

Under LDP-led governments, the party held more influence over policy decisions than the administration did. However, the DPJ wants to reverse this balance and give more power to the envisaged administration.
 民主党は、自民党政権での「党高政低」的な政策決定を「政高党低」に変えたいようだ。

However, achieving this goal will be no easy feat if Ozawa, who is a top party official but not a member of the envisaged cabinet, throws his weight around on policy decisions.
小沢氏が党の立場で政府の外側から力を行使しては、この目標の達成が困難になりかねない。

Hatoyama quoted Ozawa as saying during their talks Thursday night that he would not, in principle, be involved in making policy decisions since the government is supposed to do that.
 鳩山代表によれば、3日の鳩山―小沢会談で小沢氏は、「政策はすべて政府が決定することになるので、私は基本的にはかかわらない」と述べたという。

Ozawa's remark about his "nonintervention in policy decisions" emboldened Hatoyama enough to tell reporters that Ozawa's appointment would not create a dual system of power. But we have doubts about whether this will really be the case.
 この“政策不介入”発言を受けて、鳩山代表は、記者団に「権力の二重構造にはならない」と説明している。果たしてそうか。

===

DPJ must stay united

Hatoyama said a total of about 100 lawmakers would be allocated to government ministries and agencies as ministers, vice ministers, parliamentary secretaries, advisers to ministers and in other positions so the government can be the sole arbiter of policy decisions.
 鳩山代表は、政府による一元的な政策決定を図るため、各府省に大臣、副大臣、政務官、大臣補佐官など国会議員約100人を配置するとしている。

However, policies drafted by such lawmakers cannot be implemented unless they are written up as bills and pass both Diet chambers. Enacting bills requires the cooperation of the party--including the secretary general, who has responsibility over Diet affairs as part of party management.
 しかし、そこで政策を立案しても、それを法案化し衆参両院で成立させなければ実施できない。法案成立には、党運営の一環として国会対策に責任を持つ幹事長以下、党の協力が不可欠だ。

Hatoyama has a responsibility to exercise firm leadership to keep Ozawa on a short leash so he does not run away with the party.
 鳩山代表は形はどうであれ、自らの責任と指導力で小沢氏の“独走”を防ぐことが肝要である。

Meanwhile, preparations for the transition of power are running late. Even a brief intermission is impermissible in politics. Hatoyama should choose his lineup of key ministers as soon as possible.
 それにしても、政権移行の準備が遅れている。政治は一時の休止も許されない。主要閣僚の陣容は早く整えるべきだろう。

Ozawa has been criticized in the past for his attitude and high-handed behavior, such as missing important meetings or refusing to provide detailed explanations. Ozawa will have to correct his ways if he is to become secretary general of the nation's largest party.
 小沢氏は普段、丁寧な説明を欠いたり、会議に出なかったり、その態度や姿勢が批判されてきた。最大政党の幹事長なら、これは改めなければなるまい。

Now, more than ever, Ozawa will need to offer greater accountability over the scandal involving illicit donations from Nishimatsu Construction Co. that eventually led to the indictment of his government-funded secretary.
 公設秘書が起訴された西松建設違法献金事件では、従来以上に説明責任が求められる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 5, 2009)
(2009年9月5日01時16分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 4日 (金)

鳩山対米外交 信頼構築へ言動が問われる

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 4, 2009)
Actions speak louder than words on U.S. ties
鳩山対米外交 信頼構築へ言動が問われる(9月4日付・読売社説)

Words alone are not enough to build a relationship of trust between Japan and the United States. Actions also will be important for crafting deeper ties.
 日米の信頼関係を築くには、「言葉」だけでなく「行動」が肝心だ。

During his telephone conversation with U.S. President Barack Obama, Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama said the Japan-U.S. security alliance remained the "foundation" of Japan's foreign policy. The two leaders also agreed that their nations would build future-oriented relations. Hatoyama echoed these comments during his meeting Thursday with new U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos.
 民主党の鳩山代表がオバマ米大統領との電話会談で「日米同盟が基軸」との意向を表明し、未来志向の関係を築くことで一致した。ジョン・ルース駐日大使との会談でも、日米関係の強化を確認した。

A call from the U.S. president and a visit by the ambassador so soon after the DPJ's landslide victory in the House of Representatives election indicates that the U.S. government attaches great importance to ties with Japan but, at the same time, is concerned about the future bilateral relationship.
 民主党の衆院選勝利後早々の大統領からの電話や大使の表敬訪問は、米政府が日本を重視すると同時に、今後の日米関係を心配しているため、と見るべきだろう。

These anxieties stemmed partly from Hatoyama's recent op-ed piece in The New York Times that caused a stir by expressing views that appeared to be critical of the United States.
 というのも、米紙に最近掲載された鳩山代表の論文が、「反米的だ」などと米側に受け止められ、波紋を広げているからだ。

===

Article invited confusion

The article, which was published in the newspaper's electronic version as a translated excerpt from an article originally carried in a monthly Japanese magazine, contained comments including, "Japan has been continually buffeted by the winds of market fundamentalism in a U.S.-led movement...Consequently, human dignity is lost," and Japan and other Asian nations "want to restrain U.S. political and economic excesses."
 論文には、「日本は米国主導の市場原理主義に翻弄(ほんろう)され続け、人間の尊厳が失われた」「米国の政治的、経済的行き過ぎは抑制したい」といった表現がある。

Hatoyama later explained that he did not intend to espouse anti-U.S. views in the article. But it is undeniable that the article included expressions critical of the United States and, as a result, gave the impression it was anti-U.S.
 鳩山代表は「反米的な考え方を示したものでない」と説明する。だが、論文が米国批判を含み、結果的に「反米的」との印象を与えた事実は否定できない。

Reaction in the United States also has been shaped by mounting distrust against DPJ policy planks such as opposition to the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling activities in the Indian Ocean and calls for reviewing the planned realignment of U.S. forces stationed in Japan.
 米側の反応の背景には、インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動への反対や、在日米軍再編の見直しなど、従来の民主党の主張に対する不信感の蓄積もあるだろう。

Hatoyama is no longer a mere opposition leader; he will soon become this nation's prime minister. He should remember that his remarks carry considerable weight.
 鳩山代表は、もはや単なる野党党首でなく、次期首相の立場だ。その発言の重みを自覚し、行動することが求められる。

He should not simply stick to underlining differences between his party and the government and ruling parties, as he did while he was an opposition member. Rather, Hatoyama should commit himself to preserving policies that deserve to be kept in place and develop them into better ones.
 野党時代のように、政府・与党との違いを強調することばかりに固執すべきではない。継承すべき政策はしっかりと継承し、むしろ発展させる発想が大切だ。

Hatoyama has a busy--and important--diplomatic schedule coming up. He is expected to hold his first summit meeting with Obama later this month around the time when a U.N. General Assembly meeting is to be held. U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates is expected to visit Japan in October, and Obama is penciled in to visit Japan in November.
 今月下旬の国連総会に合わせた初の日米首脳会談、10月にゲーツ国防長官来日、11月にオバマ大統領来日と、重要な外交日程が続く。

===

United stance needed

Initially, Hatoyama might only be obliged to pay lip service to the importance of the Japan-U.S. alliance. But words by themselves will certainly not be enough over the long term.
最初は、日米同盟の重要性を「言葉」で確認すればいいが、それだけではすまされない。

Tokyo and Washington face a raft of important issues that must be tackled together, such as the fight against terrorism, North Korea's nuclear ambitions, the realignment of U.S. forces in Japan, and reviving the staggering world economy. What role will Japan play to resolve these issues? If the DPJ intends to end the refueling mission, it must present concrete alternative measures.
 テロとの戦い、北朝鮮の核、在日米軍再編、世界経済の回復など日米が連携して取り組むべき重要課題は多い。日本は、問題解決のためにどんな役割を果たすのか。例えば給油活動を中止するなら、具体的な代案を示すべきだ。

During talks with the Social Democratic Party and the People's New Party aimed at striking a deal on forming a coalition, the DPJ proposed that pursuing a close and equal alliance with the United States be included as a policy in a consensus document among the parties. The DPJ apparently wants to make more demands of the United States than ever before.
 民主党は社民、国民新両党との連立政権協議で、「緊密で対等な日米同盟関係」を合意文書に盛り込むよう提案している。従来以上に米国に注文する狙いだろう。

However, the party should not forget that, as long as it intends to be more willing to speak its mind, it must bear due responsibilities in the international community.
 だが、物を言う以上は、当然、日本が相応の国際的な責任を担う覚悟を忘れてはなるまい。

Hatoyama's repeated verbal overtures seeking a relationship of trust with Obama will not amount to anything unless they are backed up with actions.
 鳩山代表が再三口にする「オバマ大統領との信頼関係」は、「行動」なしに実現しない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 4, 2009)
(2009年9月4日01時28分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 3日 (木)

社説:新政権に望む 率直で明快な発信を

(Mainichi Japan) September 2, 2009
Hatoyama should express clear and frank views on diplomacy
社説:新政権に望む 率直で明快な発信を

If a country unilaterally scraps an agreement it has with another country, the international community would lose confidence in that nation. The continuation of diplomatic and security policies is thus very important.
 国と国の約束事を自国の都合だけでほごにしては国際社会での信用にかかわる。外交・安全保障政策には継続性が大事だ。

However, if the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) becomes too cautious about hammering out innovative policies because it attaches too much importance to the continuation of policies, it would lessen the significance of the historic transfer of government power. Since the U.S.-led unipolar world structure collapsed, world peace and security cannot be pursued without multilateral cooperation and alliances. The transfer of government power in Japan offers a good opportunity to broaden the scope of choices for Japan's diplomatic policy.
 だが、そのことを重視するあまり新機軸を打ち出すことに慎重になりすぎては歴史的な政権交代を果たした意味が薄れる。米国の一極体制が過去のものとなり世界の平和と安全は多国間の協調と連携なしには追求しがたい。日本外交にとっても政策選択の幅を広げる好機である。

It is hoped that DPJ leader Yukio Hatoyama, who is set to take over the reins of government, will map out a large-scale diplomatic strategy that is not bound by the existing framework and will send a clear message to the world, while keeping in mind the reality of international politics.
 国政を担うことになる鳩山由紀夫・民主党代表には、国際政治の現実を踏まえながらも従来の枠にとらわれない大きな外交戦略を描き、率直で明快なメッセージを発信することを望む。

Hatoyama's diplomatic power will be tested immediately after forming a coalition Cabinet with the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the People's New Party (PNP). He will hold his first summit with President Barack Obama when visiting the United States in late September to deliver a speech at a U.N. General Assembly session in New York and attend the G20 summit in Pittsburgh. It will be an important meeting as Hatoyama pursues a close and equal Japan-U.S. partnership.
 鳩山氏は社民党などとの連立協議を整え新内閣を発足させれば、さっそく外交力が試される場面を迎える。今月下旬の訪米の際、ニューヨークでの国連総会演説やピッツバーグでの主要20カ国・地域(G20)金融サミットなどに合わせオバマ大統領との初の日米首脳会談が行われる方向だ。「緊密で対等な日米関係」を掲げる鳩山氏にとっては大事な会談となる。

On the agenda during talks with the United States will be a review of U.S. bases in Japan, revisions to the Japan-U.S. Status-of-Forces Agreement and efforts to contribute to the war against terror that would replace the Maritime Self-Defense Force's mission in the Indian Ocean to refuel U.S. and other military vessels. Hatoyama will also try to get to the bottom of a secret agreement in the 1960s to allow U.S. vessels carrying nuclear arms to call at Japanese ports. However, Washington is likely to refuse to reopen negotiations on the agreed-upon realignment of U.S. forces in Japan.
 対米交渉の課題としては、在日米軍基地のあり方見直しや日米地位協定の改定、自衛隊によるインド洋での給油活動に代わる対テロ貢献策、核持ち込みに関する日米密約の解明などがある。しかし、米側は在日米軍再編に関する日米合意の再協議には応じない考えを示しておりハードルは高い。

Hatoyama's summit meeting with Obama, which is expected to take place in New York, will likely determine whether he can lay the groundwork for nurturing mutual trust that will allow them to cooperate in tackling these issues prior to a Japan visit by Obama in November.
 ニューヨーク会談は、11月のオバマ大統領初訪日に向けてこうした課題に協調して対処できる信頼関係の土台づくりができるかどうかの試金石となるだろう。

At such a crucial moment, Hatoyama's article on international relations, carried in the online edition of The New York Times and by other media, has cast a shadow over Japan-U.S. relations. In the article, Hatoyama raised questions about U.S.-led market fundamentalism and the dollar's role as the world's key currency, and states that he will pursue the creation of an East Asian community, stirring controversy in the United States.
 そうした折、気になることが起きている。米ニューヨーク・タイムズ紙(電子版)などに掲載された鳩山氏の論文が米主導の市場原理主義や基軸通貨としてのドルに疑問を呈し、東アジア共同体の創設を目指すことを主張していることが米国内で波紋を広げているという。

Hatoyama defended the piece, saying, "I never expressed any anti-U.S. opinions. You will probably understand it if you read the whole article."
 鳩山氏は「決して反米的な考え方を示したものではない。論文全体を読んでいただければわかると思う」と説明している。

However, he should choose his words more carefully when expressing opinions to prevent misunderstanding if he means that he will pursue the creation of a peaceful East Asian community based on Japan-U.S. relations.
鳩山氏の真意が日米関係を基盤としたうえで東アジアでの平和的な共同体を構想することにあるというのなら、今後の発信には誤解を招かないよう配意する必要がある。

The new administration will be required to deal with North Korea's nuclear and missile programs, the abduction by North Korea of Japanese nationals, the dispute with Russia over the Northern Territories and the strengthening of top-level dialogue with Chinese and South Korean leaders, among other diplomatic issues unsolved by the coalition government comprised of the Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito. The DPJ should utilize the strong support it won from the public in the general election in promoting its diplomatic policy.
 新政権は北朝鮮による核・ミサイル・拉致、ロシアとの北方領土問題、中国・韓国との首脳対話強化など自民党政権下での外交が積み残した課題にも取り組まなければならない。総選挙で得た国民の支持を強力な外交の展開に生かしてほしい。

毎日新聞 2009年9月2日 0時19分

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鳩山新政権へ―「政権主導」の強い基盤を

--The Asahi Shimbun, Sept. 2(IHT/Asahi: September 3,2009)
EDITORIAL: Message to Hatoyama
鳩山新政権へ―「政権主導」の強い基盤を

Yukio Hatoyama, president of the Democratic Party of Japan, must be feeling like the captain of a ship that is about to encounter tempestuous waters with an awesome cargo.
 民主党の鳩山代表は、途方もない重荷を負って荒海に乗り出す船長の思いではなかろうか。

Hatoyama is to be named prime minister at a special session of the Diet on Sept. 16. He has only until then to fine-tune his DPJ-led administration to give it a firm grip on the reins of government. With no model to go by, he has only a blank canvas to work with.
 特別国会で16日、首相に選出される。船出までに政権が政治を主導する態勢を築かねばならない。過去にモデルはない。白地に絵を描く作業の始まりである。

Strike while the iron is hot, as the old adage goes.
 鉄は熱いうちに打て、という。

In an opinion poll conducted by The Asahi Shimbun immediately after Sunday's Lower House election, about 70 percent of respondents said they were "glad" of the change of government and pinned their hopes on the new DPJ administration. The figure indicates the former main opposition party's call for change--to end decades of Liberal Democratic Party politics and let the people, rather than bureaucrats, call the shots in policymaking--resonated widely with voters.
 総選挙直後に朝日新聞が行った世論調査では、政権交代を「よかった」、民主党政権に「期待する」と答えた人がともに7割前後に達した。長年の自民党政治を変える、官僚主導から国民主導の政治へ。そうした民主党の訴えに対する熱い思いが読みとれる。

National Strategy Bureau is key
■かぎ握る国家戦略局

How should the DPJ respond to the people's expectations? Most importantly, the party must exercise firm authority over every aspect of government and create a system that will put the right people in the right places to boldly prioritize the party's policies.
 この民意にどう応えるか。まず重要なのは、司令塔として政府全体に号令をかけ、果敢に政策の優先順位を判断していく人事、組織づくりである。

The DPJ aims to integrate the decision-making processes for the Cabinet and the ruling party. And in a departure from the traditional wholesale dumping of work on bureaucrats, the party in power will be responsible for policymaking. In essence, the DPJ aims to radically transform the system of running the government into one that focuses on serving the interests of the nation and its citizens.
 内閣と与党の意思決定のプロセスを一元化する。官僚への丸投げではなく、政権党が責任を持って決める。これが民主党の掲げる政権主導のシステムだ。「国益」「国民益」重視の政権運営の仕組みに根っこから変えていきたいということだろう。

The DPJ plans to appoint about 100 party legislators to government ministries and agencies. They will work with the relevant Cabinet ministers in policymaking, rather than just go along with decisions and proposals made by government officials. In short, the people's elected representatives will make decisions first and then tell bureaucrats what to do.
 そのために、約100人の与党の国会議員が政府に入って、省庁ごとに大臣を中心にした政治家集団で政策づくりを主導する。官僚のおぜん立てに乗るのではなく、まず政治家が判断し、官僚を動かす。そんなイメージだ。

The National Strategy Bureau that will be created to answer directly to the prime minister will hold the key to the successful functioning of this system under which the administration takes the initiative and reduces dependence on the bureaucracy.
 この「政権主導」「脱・官僚依存」の仕組みを動かす鍵は、新設される首相直属の「国家戦略局」が握る。

By overturning the traditional "bottom-up" budget compilation procedure, directed mainly by Finance Ministry bureaucrats, the new bureau will take a top-down approach, deciding priority policies first. The bureau will also work out a grand design for the nation, including foreign policy.
 これまで財務官僚を中心に下からの積み上げでつくられていた予算編成のプロセスをひっくり返し、優先すべき政策を決め、下へおろす。外交政策など国家ビジョンの策定にもあたる。

This bureau is pivotal to the new administration's decision-making setup with the prime minister at the top of the pyramid.
 首相を頂点にした意思決定の扇のかなめに位置する組織である。

This is probably what is needed today. However, throughout the long years of LDP rule, fiscal decisions were made collectively by the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy, whose members included high-profile economists and academics, and the nation's entrenched, mammoth bureaucracy. But with the DPJ now set to undertake the task under an entirely new system, the transition will amount to nothing short of major surgery.
 この方向は時代の要請でもあろう。だが、自民党政権時代は、経済人や学者を交えた経済財政諮問会議や霞が関の巨大な官僚組織が束になって取り組んできた仕事だ。それをまったく新しい組織で動かそうというのだから、大変な大手術になるのは明らかだ。

New political-bureaucratic collaboration
■政官の新たな協働を

This makes the selection of the Cabinet minister in charge of the new National Strategy Bureau all the more critical and tricky. The individual would have to be not only policy savvy, but also be a tough politician capable of overcoming resistance from within and outside the party. And members of the bureau should not be limited to lawmakers alone. The DPJ ought to actively enlist qualified people from the private sector and ensure the bureau is staffed by competent and highly motivated individuals.
 だからこそ、戦略局の担当閣僚の人選は大事であり、難しい。政策に明るいことはもちろん、党内外の抵抗を封じる強力な政治力が求められる。国会議員だけでなく、民間の人材も積極的に登用し、意欲と能力のあるスタッフをそろえるべきだ。

The proposed Administrative Reform Council is to work at eliminating administrative waste and corruption--a major crusade promised by the DPJ. The Cabinet minister in charge of this council will be responsible not only for cutting wasteful spending to secure the funds needed to finance policies, but also for removing voters' long-held mistrust in politics by bringing transparency to politics and administrative matters.
 民主党政権が最重視する行政のムダと不正の排除に取り組む「行政刷新会議」。担当相は財源をひねり出すだけでなく、政治と行政を透明化し、有権者の積年の政治不信をぬぐう任務も負う。

The council will have to produce immediate results if the public is to see any tangible change from the LDP years.
自民党政権時代と何が変わるのか、成果を直ちに出さねばならない。

The finance minister deals directly with the nation's fiscal policy. The foreign minister directs diplomatic negotiations while coordinating the opinions of his party and the ruling coalition. The chief Cabinet secretary is the administration's linchpin. Any bad decision in the selection of people for these key Cabinet posts will immediately bring the new administration to a grinding halt.
 財政政策を直接仕切る財務相。党内や連立与党を調整しつつ、外交交渉の先頭に立つ外相。政府のかなめを握る官房長官。これら主要閣僚の人選にしくじれば、新政権はすぐにも立ち往生してしまうだろう。

Since the Cabinet members are the main pillars to support the administration's foundations, it should adopt a long-range strategy for selection of members so as to avoid mid-term replacements.
 政権の屋台骨を支える閣僚については、基本的に途中で交代させないという長期戦略も必要ではないか。

It is also crucial that a lively, cooperative relationship be established between the administration and the bureaucracy.
 官僚機構との間に、活力に富んだ協力関係を築くことも重要である。

While it is obvious that the people's elected representatives should lead politics, their numbers are limited, and they cannot be expected to be responsible for everything.
 政治主導は当然のことだが、限られた数の政治家がすべてを担うわけにはいかない。

Bureaucrats with a wealth of knowledge and experience are professionals in planning and implementing policies. Without drawing upon their expertise and relying on their support, the administration will have little chance of being able to run the nation efficiently.
 官僚は、知識と経験を兼ね備えた政策の企画や執行のプロ集団だ。政権の下支えとしてその力を引き出せなければ、政権運営はとてもおぼつかない。

We also have requests to make of our government officials. They are rightfully proud of having supported the nation's postwar prosperity and looked out for the national interest. We want them to live up to their pride in the service of the new administration. They should advise the new political leaders on how to run the government fairly and efficiently, and stop them if they start grandstanding. Why not prove their mettle by giving the bureaucracy a "new face"?
 官僚の側にも注文がある。戦後の日本の繁栄を支え、国益を担ってきたという自負を、新しい政治の枠組みの中で生かしてもらいたい。公平で効率的な行政のあり方を進言し、政権が人気取りに走ろうとすれば歯止めをかける。そんな新しい「官」の姿をつくる気概を見せてはどうか。

Party unity is everything
■党の結束あってこそ

We also have something we want the DPJ's 140-plus rookie legislators to think about. That is, what do the people who elected them and orchestrated this change of government expect of the DPJ?
 140人を超える民主党の新人議員たちにも考えてほしいことがある。皆さんを当選させ、政権交代を実現させた民意は、民主党に何を期待しているのかをである。

Many ruling party legislators will not be placed in government ministries and agencies, but we expect them to speak out as responsible politicians and actively involve themselves in the policymaking process to reflect the will of the people.
 政府に加わらない多くの与党議員たちにも、政治家として自らの責任で発言し、政策づくりのプロセスに意見を反映させるべく、大いに行動してもらいたい。

At the same time, every DPJ legislator must fully recognize his or her responsibility to honor any decision made by the ruling party. They must strictly avoid any inappropriate word or action that will unnecessarily fragment the party's power, which is given by the people.
 だが、同時に、政権党として決めた結論には自らも責任を負うことをしっかり認識する必要がある。民意によって与えられたパワーをいたずらに分散させることがあってはならない。

Perhaps the person who understands this best is Ichiro Ozawa, the party's acting president who effectively directed the Lower House election campaign.
 そのことを一番身に染みて感じているのは、今回の選挙戦を事実上、指揮した小沢一郎代表代行かもしれない。

Ozawa personally engineered the birth of the Morihiro Hosokawa administration 16 years ago, but it did not last even a year. One major reason for its collapse lay in the fact that it was a cobbled-together alliance of as many as seven parties and a group that could not stay united.
 16年前、自ら主導してつくった細川政権が短期間で崩壊したのは、八つもの政党・会派が寄り集まった与党内の結束の乱れが大きな原因だった。

With a court hearing coming up for Ozawa's aide who was arrested for his alleged role in the illegal donations from Nishimatsu Construction Co., Ozawa is expected to decline a Cabinet posting for now and continue as the party's campaign guru.
 西松建設からのダミー献金事件で秘書の公判を控えていることもあって、小沢氏は今回は閣内に入らず、引き続き党で選挙対策を担う考えのようだ。

But whether Ozawa will remain acting president or accept the post of secretary-general, we hope he will make full use of his power and experience in consolidating leadership of Hatoyama as prime minister.
 代表代行のままなのか、幹事長に就くのか。いずれにせよ、その力と経験を「鳩山首相」の指導力の確立に大いに役立ててほしい。

It will be no easy task to keep a mammoth ruling party together. But if the DPJ proves incapable of it, the party will have betrayed the people who chose to entrust their nation to a new administration in the face of formidable challenges.
 巨大与党を結束させていくのは容易なことではない。だが、それができなければ、大変な課題を前に新しい政治に託した民意に背くことになる。

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連立政権協議 現実的な安保政策が不可欠だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 3, 2009)
New coalition govt needs realistic security policy
連立政権協議 現実的な安保政策が不可欠だ(9月3日付・読売社説)

The Democratic Party of Japan, the Social Democratic Party and the People's New Party began talks Wednesday on forming a tripartite coalition government.
 民主、社民、国民新の3党が、連立政権樹立に向けた協議を始めた。

However, before forming their coalition, it is vital that they reach a consensus over policy issues, as any outstanding ambiguities will lead to serious problems in the future. All three parties must be prepared to make necessary adjustments to their respective policies.
連立政権は政策の合意が前提となる。あいまいな合意は禍根を残す。十分な政策のすり合わせが肝要だ。

The DPJ won an unprecedented 308 seats in Sunday's House of Representatives election, though it has less than a single-party majority in the House of Councillors. The DPJ is thus forging a coalition government with the SDP and the PNP in an apparent attempt to ensure policy measures are carried out in a stable manner.
 民主党は衆院で空前の308議席を獲得したが、参院では単独過半数に満たない。社民、国民新両党との連立を目指すのは、より安定した政権運営のためだろう。

In previous coalition governments, there have been a number of cases in which small parties have stuck steadfastly to their individual policies to stress the significance of their existence within the government. However, this merely caused confusion. The DPJ should learn lessons from such precedents and be wary about making easy concessions.
 ただ、過去の連立政権では、少数政党が存在意義をアピールしようと、自らの主張に固執し、混乱した例も少なくない。安易な譲歩は禁物である。

The SDP is demanding that a ruling coalition organ be established to review bills and other policies before they are approved by the Cabinet. Though this kind of body has existed in the past, it likely would cause problems this time around, as it would contradict the DPJ's policy to make its administration the sole arbiter vis-a-vis policy decisions.
 社民党は、法案などを閣議決定前に事前審査するための与党協議機関の設置を要求している。こうした機関は過去にも存在した。だが、今回、問題なのは、民主党が目指す「政策決定の政府への一元化」と矛盾することだ。

Meanwhile, it is rumored that DPJ Acting President Ichiro Ozawa likely will be given an important post within the DPJ, but not as part of the Cabinet. However, Ozawa has many supporters and wields considerable influence, and if he has a large say in policy decisions, it would lead once again to a dual system of power.
 民主党の小沢一郎代表代行は入閣せず、党の要職にとどまる方向とされる。実力者の小沢氏が党内の支持勢力を背景に、政策決定面で強い影響力を持てば、「権力の二重構造」の再現になろう。

===

Common policies

The coalition talks are based on "common policies" for six items--including a freeze on the consumption tax rate--that the three parties agreed upon prior to the lower house election.
 連立協議は、3党が衆院選前に合意した、消費税率据え置きなど6項目の「共通政策」が土台となる。

However, the real issues to be thrashed out during the talks are foreign and security policies. These topics were not included in the common policies because the parties' respective stances are so different.
焦点は、各党の立場の隔たりが大きく、共通政策に含まれなかった外交・安全保障政策だ。

For example, the DPJ believes that Maritime Self-Defense Force vessels should continue their refueling mission in the Indian Ocean until January, but the SDP is demanding an immediate pullout.
 インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動について、民主党は来年1月まで続ける考えだが、社民党は公約で即時撤退を求めた。

In addition, the DPJ approves of the MSDF's antipiracy mission in waters off Somalia, while the SDP insists the Japan Coast Guard should be running the operation.
民主党はソマリア沖での海自の海賊対処活動を容認するが、社民党は海上保安庁への切り替えを主張する。

The refueling mission represents Japan's sole contribution of personnel to international efforts against terrorism, and the nation's efforts are highly appreciated by the countries concerned. We believe it is a matter of course that this mission continue, even after January.
 給油活動は、「テロとの戦い」における日本唯一の人的支援策で関係国の評価も高い。本来、来年1月以降も継続すべきである。

Furthermore, it is unrealistic for the JCG to take the place of the MSDF in the antipiracy mission in light of differences in their respective equipment and backup systems.
 海賊対策も、装備・体制面で海保への切り替えは非現実的だ。

===

Wasted negotiations?

A more pressing concern is that both the DPJ and the SDP have policies to review the plan to relocate U.S. forces in Japan. According to the plan, the transfer of the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station in Ginowan to the shores of Camp Schwab in Nago, both in Okinawa Prefecture, would occur five years from now.
 より深刻な問題は、民主、社民両党がともに掲げる在日米軍再編の見直しだ。海兵隊普天間飛行場の沖縄県内移設は、あと5年で実現する段階にある。

If this planned transfer is canceled, 13 years of negotiations between the Japanese and U.S. governments will have been for naught, and the return of the air station site to Japan will be deferred. In addition, a plan to relocate 8,000 marines to Guam--a measure aimed at alleviating burdens on people in the prefecture--would be scrapped.
 これを白紙に戻せば、13年間の日米双方の努力が無に帰すうえ、飛行場返還は遠のく。在沖縄海兵隊8000人のグアム移転という地元負担軽減策もなくなる。

It is completely understandable that a U.S. State Department spokesman on Monday said Washington will never renegotiate the relocation plan.
 米国務省報道官が米軍再編について「再交渉しない」と言明したのは、十分理解できる。

In the world of diplomacy, it is not possible under normal circumstances for one nation's desires to be completely realized. Therefore, the DPJ should never compromise its flexibility nor reduce its options in diplomatic affairs by sticking to the various stances it adopted as the opposition when it was criticizing the government.
 外交では、通常、自国の主張が100%実現することはあり得ない。民主党は、政府批判に重点を置いた野党時代の主張にとらわれ、外交面での柔軟性と選択肢を自ら狭めるべきではあるまい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 3, 2009)
(2009年9月3日01時30分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 2日 (水)

歴史的惨敗―出直し自民党への教訓

--The Asahi Shimbun, Sept. 1(IHT/Asahi: September 2,2009)
EDITORIAL: Recreating the LDP
歴史的惨敗―出直し自民党への教訓

Sunday's Lower House election, much like an Othello board game, dramatically reversed the fortunes of the Liberal Democratic Party.
But the LDP overnight was rendered an opposition party, with less than one-quarter of the Lower House seats.
The LDP, together with its junior coalition partner, New Komeito, had controlled more than two-thirds of the Lower House seats and repeatedly passed bills rejected by the opposition-dominated Upper House.
 まさにオセロゲームのような逆転劇だった。公明党とともに衆院で3分の2超の数を誇り、法案の再可決を繰り返してきた自民党は、一夜にして4分の1以下の勢力に転落した。

The cause of its defeat was obvious. Prime Minister Taro Aso himself admitted, "We were unable to wipe away the public's long-held dissatisfaction with our party."
 敗因は明白だ。「自由民主党に対する積年の不満をぬぐい去ることができなかった」。麻生首相自身がそう振り返った。

The LDP was effectively the nation's only party in power throughout the Cold War era.
 戦後の冷戦期を通じて自民党は、長らく実質的に唯一の政権政党であり続けた。

The party redistributed the fruits of economic growth to rural regions in the forms of public works projects and subsidies.
It perfected what may be called "the LDP system," under which the political, bureaucratic and business communities all benefited.
経済成長の果実を公共事業や補助金で地方に再分配し、政官業ともに潤う「自民党システム」ともいうべき仕組みを完成させた。

But once the Cold War and the years of economic growth ended, the party could no longer conceal dysfunctions in the system.
 だが、冷戦も高成長も終わり、システムの行き詰まりは覆い隠せなくなった。

Although the LDP tried a different tack with Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's market-oriented reforms, this resulted in wider social disparities and ironically led to the destruction of its traditional, rural support base.
市場原理を重視する小泉改革で目先を変えたものの、それが格差を広げ、農村部など党の伝統的な支持基盤を破壊する皮肉な結果を招いた。

The LDP consists of a broad spectrum of members, from conservatives to liberals. Its identity rested solely on the fact that it was the party in power.
 右派からリベラルまで、幅広い議員集団を束ねていたアイデンティティーは、常に政権党であるという一点にあった。

Now that its power has been snatched away, a sense of lost identity pervades the shell-shocked party.
だからこそ権力を奪われたいま、党内は喪失感に覆われている。

In deciding which direction it needs to go, we suggest the LDP draw lessons from the rival Democratic Party of Japan's experiences.
 この先、党の針路をどう定めるべきか。ここは頭を切りかえて、民主党の教訓に学んではどうだろうか。

The DPJ's history since its establishment in 1996 has been replete with defeats and disappointments.
 96年の結党以来の民主党の歴史は、挫折の繰り返しでもあった。

First, a party leader was found to have failed to pay pension premiums. In the 2005 Lower House election, the party suffered an unexpected disastrous setback. The party was then rocked by a fake e-mail scandal.
 年金保険料の未納問題、勝てると思った郵政選挙での惨敗、そして偽メール事件。

Each time, the party's leader was forced to resign. But the DPJ ranks remained united and held fast to its policy principles until the public finally trusted the party enough to let it run the government.
そのたびに党代表が辞任に追い込まれながらも、民主党は結束を崩さず主張を明確にし、政権を託されるまでの信頼をようやく勝ち得た。

What the LDP needs to do is to humbly admit that it had become arrogant from being in power for too many years, choose a president who will heed the voice of the people, and recover public trust by repackaging its image and policies.
 自民党に求められているのは、長年の政権担当から生まれた驕(おご)りを謙虚に反省し、国民の声を聞く指導者を選び、政策と党のイメージを作り直すことを通じて信頼を回復することだ。

Although diminished in strength, the LDP can still boast having ruled the country for more than half a century. It should draw upon its experiences when it challenges the policies of the new administration and offer viable alternatives.
 所帯は小さくなったとはいえ、半世紀余りにわたって日本の政権を担った実績はある。それを生かして政権を批判し、よりよい対案を出す。

The DPJ has promised allowances to families with children and toll-free highways.
But are these "signature programs" really in the nation's interest? Won't the party be hurting some people in funding these programs?
 たとえば、子ども手当や高速道路の無料化など、民主党の看板政策が本当にこの国にとってプラスなのか。財源を生み出すためにどこかにしわ寄せがいかないか。

If the LDP were to point these things out, the DPJ would not be able to ignore its opinions.
そうした指摘は民主党も軽視はできまい。

A sense of urgency and competition, created by the awareness that a change of government can take place, should compel each party to refine its policies.
 政権交代があり得るという緊張感の中で政党が競いあうことによって、政策の質が高まっていく。

But whether this type of politics will take root in Japan will depend on the LDP's caliber as the opposition party.
そうした政治が日本に根付くかどうかは、野党・自民党の今後の奮起にかかっている。

The LDP plans to select its new president after the new prime minister has been named.
 自民党は、新首相の指名後に次の総裁を選ぶという。

The party can no longer afford to use its inane strategy of choosing a leader because he or she will be suitable as the party's "poster boy (or girl)" at election time.
「選挙の顔」となりうるという理由だけで指導者を選ぶような浅はかなことをしている余裕はもはやあるまい。

Where does the LDP want to go from now? We hope party members will thoroughly discuss their future and determine the party's new identity.
 これから党のよって立つ基盤をどこに定めるのか。この際、時間をかけて論議を深め、新たな党のアイデンティティーを見つけ出してほしい。

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政権移行―1分も無駄にできない

--The Asahi Shimbun, Sept. 1(IHT/Asahi: September 2,2009)
EDITORIAL: Transition of power
政権移行―1分も無駄にできない

The main challenge now facing the Democratic Party of Japan is to sort out its priorities during its transition to power following its landslide victory in Sunday's Lower House election.
 政権移行期に何をしておかねばならないか。総選挙で圧勝した鳩山民主党の、目下の最大の課題だ。

This is an issue of great concern and interest to the public, which is about to confront the first full-fledged change in government.
 初めて本格的な政権交代を経験する国民にとっても重大な関心事である。

The nation cannot afford to be thrown into a political void concerning urgent issues that affect people's daily lives.
生命や暮らしにかかわる緊急の課題で空白が生じては困るのだ。

It will probably take about two weeks before the new DPJ government is formally set up.
 民主党政権が正式に発足するまでには、2週間ほどかかりそうだ。

DPJ President Yukio Hatoyama will form his Cabinet after he is named prime minister at a special Diet session to be convened in the week starting Sept. 14.
14日からの週に特別国会を開き、鳩山氏を首相に指名したあと、閣僚が任命され、新政府がスタートする。

Hatoyama originally planned to set up a "transition team" immediately by making appointments to key government and party posts, such as the chief Cabinet secretary and the secretary-general.
But he postponed the process, apparently because he realized the need to spend more time on coordination within the party, which has nearly tripled its strength in the Lower House.
 鳩山氏は当初、これに向けてすぐにも官房長官、党幹事長ら新政権の骨格人事を固めて「政権移行チーム」を始動させる方針だったが、先送りした。一夜にして3倍近い大所帯になった党内を丁寧に調整する必要があるという判断なのだろう。

While Hatoyama has good reasons to carefully prepare for the start of his administration, there are issues that cannot be delayed, such as how to respond to the new swine flu epidemic.
 ただ、慎重に政権スタートの準備を進めるのはいいが、先延ばしできない問題もある。たとえば新型インフルエンザへの対応である。

The government estimates that some 380,000 people will be hospitalized, with about 38,000 developing serious symptoms. The peak could come as early as late September, immediately after Hatoyama takes office.
 国内で約38万人が入院し、約3万8千人が重症になる。そんな発症のピークが新政権発足直後の9月下旬から10月にも迫っていると予想されている。

Still, vaccine for the new swine flu virus will not be ready in time.
それなのに、新型対応のワクチンはピークには間に合わないという。

While the Liberal Democratic Party government may be to blame for making insufficient preparations, the new government must take action as soon as possible.
 自民党政権時代の備え方が不十分だったせいもあるが、一刻も早い対応が必要だ。

We suggest Hatoyama immediately hold a meeting with Prime Minister Taro Aso to share information and work together to initiate new measures.
鳩山氏に求めたい。すぐにでも麻生首相に党首会談を呼びかけ、情報を共有して協力して新しい対策に乗り出すべきだ。

Aso will legally hold the highest government office for two more weeks, but Hatoyama shares the responsibility to address the public's concern about new swine flu.
 あと2週間、日本政府の最高責任者は法的には麻生氏だが、今後、国民に不安を抱かせないよう手を打っていくのは、次期政権を担当する鳩山氏の責任でもある。

Aso is not expected to insist that the LDP government should be in charge of policy-making until he leaves office. He might as well seek Hatoyama's cooperation.
 麻生氏も、退任するまでは自民党政府が仕切ると言い張るつもりもあるまい。むしろ、麻生氏の側から協力を求めてもおかしくない。

The global economic crisis is another issue that calls for seamless policy efforts.
 世界経済危機への対応も、手が抜けない。

A meeting of finance ministers of the Group of 20 economies will start Friday in London.
4日からロンドンでG20の財務相会合が開かれる。

The DPJ should send a lawmaker familiar with economic and financial issues.
現政権から与謝野財務・金融相が出席する予定だが、民主党からも経済や金融にくわしい国会議員を派遣すべきだ。

That will not only smooth the DPJ's transition process. A DPJ representative could reassure other major economies by explaining the party's basic fiscal and monetary policy principles.
 政権を引き継ぐ民主党にとって、役立つだけではない。これからの日本の財政や金融政策をどうするのか、世界の主要国と基本認識を語り合い、安心感をもってもらう効果は大きい。

A precedent can be found in the U.S. administration of President Barack Obama.
 参考にしたいのは、今年1月に就任したオバマ米大統領だ。

Obama, who won the presidential election amid the deepening global economic crisis, appointed his economic team two months before his inauguration in January.
Obama said: "That work starts today because the truth is, we don't have a minute to waste."
His economic team put together one of the largest economic stimulus packages in U.S. history to deal with the crisis.
金融危機まっただ中の大統領選挙で勝利するや、「今日から仕事が始まる。1分でも無駄にできない」と就任の2カ月前に経済チームを任命し、過去最大級の景気対策を準備した。

What is vital for the DPJ is to first distinguish between challenges that must be addressed immediately and those that require more time and then act swiftly.
 大事なのは、時間をかけるべきものと、緊急に対応すべきものを見分け、迅速に行動することだ。

The party cannot afford to waste a single minute during the coming two weeks.
そんな緊張感のある2週間にしてもらいたい。

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社説:新政権に望む 脱官僚へ足場固めよ 自民も移行に協力を

(Mainichi Japan) September 1, 2009
DPJ must lay foundations to transform bureaucratic gov't into legislator-dominated one
社説:新政権に望む 脱官僚へ足場固めよ 自民も移行に協力を

Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) leader Yukio Hatoyama is set to be elected prime minister at the Diet and form a new administration in mid-September after the party scored a landslide victory in Sunday's House of Representatives election.
 (これからがいよいよ政権交代の本番だ。民意の嵐が吹き荒れた投票日から一夜明けた31日、鳩山由紀夫民主党代表が9月中旬の首相指名、新政権発足に向けて動き出した。)
民主党の劇的勝利に引き続き、9月半ばに民主党の鳩山由紀夫氏が首相に指名され、その下に鳩山内閣を結成する。(スラチャイ訳)

After agreeing with the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the People's New Party (PNP) to form a coalition government, Hatoyama will set up new organizations such as the National Strategy Bureau, and appoint Cabinet members and top DPJ officials.
まずは、社会民主党、国民新党と連立協議を行い政権の枠組みを決めた上で、国家戦略局など新組織を作り、内閣・党人事に着手したい考えだ。

The biggest focal point is how to transform a bureaucrat-dominated government into one led by politicians. The success of the administration depends on its start.
 (新政権移行期初日に確認しておきたいことは、あくまでもこの政権の基本的使命が何であるかだ。)
最大の眼目は、従来の官僚丸投げの政治から政権党が責任を持つ政治主導に大きく切り替えることだ。
何事も最初が肝心である。
(どういう政権の形を作るのか。いくつか注文をつけたい。)

 ◇透明性高い連立に
The DPJ will hold consultations with the SDP and the PNP over a coalition government. Even though it won 308 of the 480 seats in the Lower House, the party must form a coalition with these two smaller parties because it alone falls short of a majority in the House of Councillors. The DPJ currently forms a parliamentary alliance with the PNP in the Upper House, but the two parties only have a combined 118 seats, still short of a majority in the 242-seat chamber, and need the cooperation of the SDP, which has five seats in the chamber.
 第一に、連立協議である。民主党が衆院で308議席を獲得したのに連立を組まざるを得ないのは、参院(定数242)では統一会派を組む国民新党などを合わせても118議席で、過半数確保には社民党(5議席)の協力が欠かせないからである。

The DPJ needs to narrow its differences with the SDP over diplomatic and defense policies while agreeing on the need to rectify gaps between the rich and poor, as well as cope with rural impoverishment, take unemployment countermeasures and rehabilitate social security programs. In particular, differences have already emerged between the two parties over the Maritime Self-Defense Force's mission in the Indian Ocean to refuel U.S. and other military vessels engaged in the war against terror. Other issues inlcude how to handle Japan's three non-nuclear principles of not possessing, not producing and not introducing nuclear weapons. The three parties should at least clarify what they have agreed on and what they haven't.
 問題は、連立における政策合意の中身である。格差社会の是正、雇用と社会保障の再建、内需中心の経済へ転換するなど内政面については、多くの一致点があるが、外交・安保面では溝が深い。特に、インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動や非核三原則の扱いをめぐってはすでに思惑の違いが表面化している。外交・安保政策はあらかじめ政権の手をしばるべきではないが、最低限どこまで合意して何が合意できていないのか、は明らかにすべきである。

Questions have been raised about how to revamp the vertically divided administration system and to ensure that legislators lead the government. During the election campaign, the DPJ pledged to appoint at least 100 ruling coalition legislators to government ministries and agencies and abolish a meeting of administrative vice ministers from all ministries and agencies. Unless these measures are effectively implemented, its pledges to transform the government into one led by legislators, to secure financial resources for its policy measures by eliminating the waste of taxpayers' money and to give local governments broader power will be unachievable.
 第二に、統治機構の改編問題である。縦割り省庁が行政を仕切る体制を改め、政治主導の実現をどう構築するかが問われる。民主党は国会議員100人以上の政府への登用や、省庁トップによる事務次官会議の廃止を公約に掲げた。こうした方針が骨抜きとならない体制を組まなければ、「脱官僚」はかけ声倒れに終わる。同党が掲げた行政のムダ削減による費用の捻出(ねんしゅつ)や「地域主権」の実現も、絵に描いた餅となろう。

The focus of the DPJ's plan to reorganize government bodies is the composition of a new bureau for national strategy, which will draft the budget under the direct control of the prime minister. The DPJ characterizes it as the "control tower" of the government that would replace the Council of Economic and Fiscal Policy, but has not clarified its details. Even if it is under the direct supervision of the prime minister, the decision-making process will remain unchanged if its secretariat is controlled by bureaucrats on loan from various ministries and agencies. It must be organized in a way legislators can control the bureau.
 まず、焦点となるのは首相直属で予算の骨格を作る新組織「国家戦略局」の構成だ。経済財政諮問会議に代わる司令塔と位置づけられるが、必ずしもその組織像は明らかでなかった。いくら首相の下に組織を作っても、各省から出向した官僚が事務局を取り仕切るのでは、これまでと実態は変わらない。国会議員が議論をリードするためには人選、配置など細部に目配りした制度設計が必要となる。

A council on administrative renewal, which the DPJ has pledged to set up to reduce government spending and review its organizations, will not effectively perform its duties unless it utilizes private think-tanks' methods of evaluating policy measures.
 行政の経費削減や組織見直しに取り組む「行政刷新会議」も、民間のシンクタンクなどが蓄積した政策評価のノウハウを柔軟に活用しなければ、実効はあがるまい。

It goes without saying that public servants are required to be politically neutral. It would be wrong to arbitrarily appoint them to certain posts and demand that they be absolutely loyal to politicians in an unfair manner and confront bureaucrats without justifiable reasons. However, the new administration should be careful not to be controlled by bureaucrats rather than worrying about confusion caused by changes in government organizations. The DPJ should consider appointing someone from the private sector as an official secretary to the prime minister.
 むろん、公務員は政治的中立を求められており、いたずらに恣意(しい)的な人事を行い「忠誠」を求めることや、「官僚たたき」で敵対関係をあおることは許されない。だが、新政権が警戒すべきことは変化に伴う混乱以上に、官僚に巧妙に取り込まれることだ。各省からの出向組が占めていた事務首相秘書官への民間人の起用なども大いに検討すべきだろう。

 ◇考え抜いた人材配置を
To achieve what it calls "regional sovereignty," the DPJ should create a system to promote decentralization of power. It is required to quickly work out the structure of a consultative body between national and local governments, which it pledged to set up in its manifesto.
 また、同党が掲げる「地域主権」を実現するうえで、分権改革を推進する体制も重要だ。やはり公約で示した国と地方の協議機関も、早急に検討を進める必要がある。

Another question is how and whom Hatoyama will appoint as Cabinet ministers and top party officials. Hatoyama says he will appoint ministers and party officials immediately before and after he is elected prime minister. The public is paying attention to how he will use top officials including acting leader Naoto Kan and Secretary-General Katsuya Okada, as well as other influential members such as Seiji Maehara, Yoshihiko Noda, Yukio Edano, Koichiro Genba, Akira Nagatsuma and Tetsuro Fukuyama. He should also consider naming figures in the private sector as Cabinet ministers.
 第三に、党と内閣の人事をどうするか。鳩山代表はこれらの人事については、首相指名の前後に一気に決めたいとしているが、名は体を表す。党と内閣の骨格を誰が支えるのかは、新政権が何を目指すのか、どこまで実現能力があるのか、を示す極めて大切な指標となる。一内閣一閣僚という中長期をにらんだ人事も必要かもしれない。菅直人代表代行、岡田克也幹事長ら党首脳クラス、前原誠司、野田佳彦、枝野幸男、玄葉光一郎、長妻昭、福山哲郎氏らエースをどう活用するのか。民間からの登用を含め、考え抜いた布陣を期待したい。

There is a plan to keep Ichiro Ozawa, who was instrumental in the party's landslide victory in the general election, in the post of the party's top election strategist. Concern has been raised that about 100 legislators who ran in the general election at the request of Ozawa -- known as "Ozawa children" -- may be organized into a faction, leading to a two-tier power structure within the party. However, it is difficult for a behind-the-scenes fixer like the late former Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka to control the party, since power is concentrated in the hands of the prime minister as a result of a revision to the electoral system and the strengthening of the power of the prime minister's office. Hatoyama, who is set to become prime minister, will certainly be able to make decisions at his own discretion.
 小沢一郎代表代行については、来年の参院選をにらみ選挙担当を継続させるとの構想もあるようだ。100人の小沢チルドレンが派閥化し党内権力構造が二元化するのではないかと心配する声もあるが、選挙制度改革や官邸機能強化により首相に権限が集中してからは、田中角栄元首相時代のヤミ将軍的な裏権力は考えにくい。すべては首相となる鳩山氏の腹一つであろう。

 第四に、政権移行期の危機管理体制の強化である。麻生政権から鳩山政権に移行するまでの2~3週間は極めて重要な政権引き継ぎ期間になる。特に、新型インフルエンザや災害発生などの危機管理は、内閣官房を中心とした時の政権の初動対応が重要だ。お見合いにならないよう、責任の所在が明確で、かつ透明性の高い政権移行を求めたい。麻生政権の最後の仕事としてほしい。

毎日新聞 2009年9月1日 東京朝刊

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自民党再出発 後継総裁選びを急ぐべきだ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 2, 2009)
Defeat leaves LDP at political crossroads
自民党再出発 後継総裁選びを急ぐべきだ(9月2日付・読売社説)

The Liberal Democratic Party has begun to choose a new party president to succeed Prime Minister Taro Aso, who has announced he will step down as party leader to take responsibility for the LDP's crushing defeat in Sunday's House of Representatives election.
 自民党は、衆院選大敗の責任を取って辞任表明した麻生首相の後継総裁選びに入った。

Can the LDP play a role in a system in which power alternates between two major political parties? Can the LDP fulfill its role as an opposition party and keep a close eye on the administration led by Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama? The LDP still has serious responsibilities to live up to even after being relegated to the opposition benches.
 政権交代可能な2大政党政治の一翼を担っていけるか。鳩山政権に対し、しっかりチェック機能を果たせるか。野党に転落しても、自民党に課せられた責任は重大だ。

The LDP must quickly select a new party president to lead its reconstruction.
 党再建にあたっては、その先頭に立つ後継総裁の選出を急ぐ必要がある。

However, the LDP intends to put off the party presidential election until after mid-September when a special Diet session is to be called to elect the new prime minister. According to the LDP, the purpose is to listen to the opinions of the prefectural chapters and other local party organizations, and rank-and-file party members, and to reflect them in the party presidential election. But under such circumstances, LDP lawmakers will vote for the current prime minister and LDP president, Taro Aso, in the Diet session.
 ところが、自民党は、今月中旬の特別国会での首相指名選挙の後に総裁選を先送りするという。地方組織や一般党員の声を反映させるためとしているが、これでは首相指名選挙で、現総裁の麻生首相に投票することになる。

It is a little pathetic that, even as a makeshift measure, the LDP will recommend as prime minster the party president who will step down from the post after voters said "no" to him in the general election.
 一時しのぎとは言え、有権者に「ノー」を突きつけられて退陣する党首を首相に推挙するというのは、余りにお粗末ではないか。

===

Antipathy toward Aso

Several LDP lawmakers oppose the postponement of the party presidential election, asserting that they would rather cast a blank ballot than have to write "Aso" in the Diet's vote on the prime minister. If the party falls into confusion, it could lead to a party split. The LDP should take the current situation seriously.
 党内でも、総裁選先送りに反発して、「『麻生』と書くぐらいなら白紙投票」と主張する議員が少なくない。混乱すれば党分裂の危機につながりかねない。状況を深刻に受け止めるべきだ。

It is important to listen to the voices of members of local party chapters and other related organizations, but does the LDP have a month to spare to reflect these opinions in the party presidential election?
 地方党員、組織の声に耳を傾けるのは重要だ。しかし、地方の意見を後継総裁選びに反映させるのに、1か月近くかける余裕が、今の自民党にあるのだろうか。

It took only about 10 days to choose a new party president when changing from former Prime Minister Kiichi Miyazawa to Yohei Kono, and from former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to former Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda. It is time for the LDP to select a new party president as soon as possible and prepare to face the Hatoyama administration.
 過去の例をみても、宮沢首相から河野総裁、安倍首相から福田首相と、10日前後で後継を選出している。1日も早く麻生首相に代わる旗頭を立て、鳩山政権に立ち向かう体制を整える時だ。

Of course, when doing so, it is natural that the LDP should seek input from party chapters and members across the country and reflect those opinions in the efforts to reconstruct the party.
 無論、その際は、地方の意向を十分に反映させるのは当然だ。

===

Party on the brink

The LDP faces the greatest crisis since its foundation. Whether a leader who can clearly display his intentions and vision for party reconstruction will emerge is of paramount importance. Politicians who are always keeping an eye on the movements of party factions are not qualified to lead.
 自民党は今、結党以来最大の危機にある。肝心なのは、党再建の意志とビジョンを明確に示すリーダーが現れるかどうかだ。派閥の動向を様子見するようでは、リーダーの資格はない。

To rebuild the party, it is indispensable to thoroughly review the reasons for its crushing defeat in the general election.
 再出発には、惨敗の原因を徹底して洗い出すことが必須だ。

Although the direction of the party's fundamental principles and policies is not basically wrong, the market fundamentalism and excessive structural changes under the administration of former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi have invited the expansion of the income gap and economically exhausted provincial areas. It also is necessary to review the "theatrical politics," or sensationalist political approach seen under the Koizumi administration.
 党の理念や政策の方向性は基本的に間違ってはいないが、小泉政権時代の市場原理主義や行き過ぎた構造改革が、格差の拡大や地方の疲弊を招いた。「小泉劇場型政治」の総括も必要だろう。

Some observers point out that the LDP has never been an organized political party because support groups for individual party lawmakers virtually act as party chapters. In addition, the LDP election campaign strategy, which has more and more come to rely on coalition partner New Komeito and Soka Gakkai, a lay Buddhist organization that is New Komeito's main supporter, has weakened the foundations of the LDP's original support bases.
 個人後援会を政党支部に衣替えしただけで、いまだに組織政党の体をなしていない、という指摘もある。公明党・創価学会に頼った選挙運動も、本来の支持基盤の足腰を弱めた。

The public will be watching closely to see whether the LDP can make a strong comeback and regain control of the government. If the party remains stupefied for long, the reputation of the LDP, which had long been a ruling party, will be ruined.
 自民党が、政権奪還に向かって力強く再起できるかどうか、国民は注視している。いつまでも茫然(ぼうぜん)自失しているようでは、これまでの「政権党」の看板が泣く。

(From the Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 2, 2009)
(2009年9月2日01時41分  読売新聞)

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2009年9月 1日 (火)

民主圧勝 政権交代―民意の雪崩受け止めよ

--The Asahi Shimbun, Aug. 31(IHT/Asahi: September 1,2009)
EDITORIAL: DPJ's historic victory
民主圧勝 政権交代―民意の雪崩受け止めよ

Sunday's Lower House election dramatically demonstrated the enormous potential of the single-seat constituency system to trigger an overnight tectonic shift in the nation's political landscape. A huge wave of popular will opened a new chapter in the nation's political history, ushering in a change of power.
 小選挙区制のすさまじいまでの破壊力である。民意の劇的なうねりのなかで、日本の政治に政権交代という新しいページが開かれた。

The election outcomes are really astonishing. A legion of ruling Liberal Democratic Party heavyweights, including incumbent ministers, was defeated in single-seat districts. Prime Minister Taro Aso announced his resignation as the party's president. New Komeito, the LDP's junior coalition partner, saw its chief and secretary-general lose their seats.
 それにしても衝撃的な結果だ。小選挙区で自民党の閣僚ら有力者が次々と敗北。麻生首相は総裁辞任の意向を示した。公明党は代表と幹事長が落選した。

These bigwigs were defeated by young or women candidates of the opposition Democratic Party of Japan, most of them political unknowns.
代わりに続々と勝ち名乗りを上げたのは、政治の舞台ではほとんど無名の民主党の若手や女性候補たちだ。

Solid footing in 100 days
 ■100日で足場固めを

The key factors behind the tide of public opinion that displaced the LDP from power are clear. One is public distrust of the LDP, which failed to address and respond effectively to radical changes in society symbolized by the aging and shrinking population and the decline of local economies due to the relentless effects of globalization. A sense of hopelessness and anxiety about the future also played a major role.
 うねりの原因ははっきりしている。少子高齢化が象徴する日本社会の構造変化、グローバル化の中での地域経済の疲弊。そうした激しい変化に対応できなかった自民党への不信だ。そして、世界同時不況の中で、社会全体に漂う閉塞(へいそく)感と将来への不安である。

Voters flocked to the DPJ. The party's landslide victory reflects a yearning among people for real change in politics fueled by their deep discontent with the status quo.
 民意は民主党へ雪崩をうった。その激しさは「このままではだめだ」「とにかく政治を変えてみよう」という人々の思いがいかに深いかを物語る。

Does this mean their deep revulsion over politics translated into confidence in the DPJ's ability to govern the nation? The answer is no. A recent Asahi Shimbun survey found surprisingly low public support for many of the DPJ's policy proposals. The public's expectations for the DPJ are apparently mixed with concerns.
 では、それが民主党政権への信頼となっているかと言えば、答えはノーだろう。朝日新聞の世論調査で、民主党の政策への評価は驚くほど低い。期待半分、不安半分というのが正直なところではあるまいか。

This election has set the stage for a party that has long been in the opposition camp to take power. The DPJ has pledged to revamp radically the policymaking process by changing the relationship between politicians and bureaucrats. But it will be difficult to change everything at once. The party will run the risk of committing blunders if it rushes into action in pursuit of quick achievements.
 長く野党にあった政党が、いきなり政権の座につく。民主党は政治の意思決定の方法や官僚との関係を大改革するという。だが、すべてを一気に変えるのは難しいし、成果をあせって猛進するのはつまずきのもとだ。

We have some advice for the DPJ.
 そこで民主党に提案したい。

The initial honeymoon for the new DPJ government will last for some 100 days from its inauguration in mid-September to the end of December, when the work to compile the state budget for next fiscal year has to be finished. We suggest that the DPJ use those 100 days to put its government on a solid footing and prioritizing its policies.
 最初の正念場は、来年度予算編成を終える12月末までだ。9月半ばの政権発足からほぼ100日間。これを政権の足場を固めるための時間と位置づけ、優先順位を明確にして全力で取り組むことだ。

There are three main challenges facing the DPJ.
 やるべきことは三つある。

First, the party needs to inject more transparency into the political and administrative processes. As a ruling party, the DPJ will have much easier access to information about the government held by bureaucrats. The DPJ should carry out a sweeping examination of all important information and make it available to the public.
 第一は、政治と行政を透明化することである。与党になれば、官僚が握る政府の情報が容易に入手できるようになる。それを洗いざらい総点検し、国民に情報を公開してもらいたい。

Courage to make necessary changes
 ■賢く豹変する勇気も

There is a long list of issues the DPJ should tackle in studying newly accessible government information: the amakudari practice of elite bureaucrats retiring into plum jobs; government contracts won by well-connected businesses without open bidding; bid-rigging led by government officials; scandals caused by lax government supervision of medicines; the Japan-U.S. secret agreement on allowing the U.S. military to bring nuclear arms into Japan. We want to see the DPJ uncover all the dark and hidden facts about these problems as it once exposed the government's shocking failure to keep track on pension records.
 天下り、随意契約、官製談合、薬害、そして歴代の自民党政権がひた隠しにしてきた核兵器持ち込みに絡む日米密約……。かつて「消えた年金」を暴いたように、隠されてきたさまざまな闇を徹底的に検証してもらいたい。

Secondly, in trying to work out specific policy programs, the DPJ should have the courage to make changes to its platform if it finds any mistakes and shortcomings.
 第二に、政策を具体化するにあたって、間違った点や足りない点が見つかったら豹変(ひょうへん)の勇気をもつことだ。

It is, of course, important for the party to make sincere efforts to deliver on the promises in its election manifesto. But the DPJ should take seriously the fact that in an Asahi Shimbun survey, as much as 83 percent of the respondents voiced concerns about the financing of the party's policy proposals. There are some proposals the party should reconsider with flexibility, including the pledge to eliminate expressway tolls.
 マニフェストを誠実に実行するのは大事なことだ。だが民主党が重く受け止めるべきは、その財源について、本紙の世論調査で83%もの人が「不安を感じる」と答えていることだ。高速道路の無料化など、柔軟に見直すべき政策はある。

It is essential for the party to explain clearly the reasons for any changes it makes to its policy platform.
むろん、政策を変えるならその理由を国民にきちんと説明することが絶対条件だ。

What the party should do swiftly is to scrutinize the expenditures in both the general and special accounts of the budget to identify wasteful projects and low-priority programs and then present its findings to the public. It would be difficult to develop a convincing budget plan without making such efforts.
 急ぐべきは一般会計と特別会計の内容を精査し、ムダな事業や優先度の低い政策を洗い出して、国民に示すことである。その作業なしに説得力のある予算編成は難しい。

DPJ President Yukio Hatoyama, who is to be elected as new prime minister, plans to attend such important international conferences as the United Nations General Assembly and a financial summit of the Group of 20 leading economies in late September. To reassure audiences both at home and overseas, Hatoyama should make clear as soon as possible his basic positions on key foreign policy issues by saying which elements of the nation's traditional foreign policy he will change and which he will keep.
 鳩山新首相は、9月下旬には国連総会やG20の金融サミットに出席する。これまでの外交政策の何を継続し、何を変えるのか。基本的な方針を速やかに明らかにし、国民と国際社会を安心させる必要がある。

Thirdly, the DPJ needs to make sure that its new policymaking systems and bodies, including the proposed National Strategy Bureau and the Administrative Reform Council, will work well in terms of their core functions and personnel management.
 第三に、国家戦略局、行政刷新会議をはじめとする政権の新しい意思決定システムを、人事態勢を含め着実に機能させることだ。

The DPJ has vowed to replace the dual control of policymaking by the government and the ruling party, which characterized the LDP's rule, with an integrated policymaking process controlled solely by the prime minister's office. It plans to change the traditional system, in which politicians basically endorse policy proposals from bureaucrats. The new approach involves setting policy priorities under political leadership. The people will be following the DPJ's moves to see how the new approach is applied to the process of compiling the budget for the next fiscal year.
 自民党政権の特徴だった政府と党の二元体制に代えて、政策決定を首相官邸主導に一元化する。官僚が政策を積み上げ、政治が追認するというやり方を改め、政治が優先順位を決める。まず来年度の予算編成にそれがどう生かされるかを国民は注視している。

Reject a dual power structure
 ■「二重権力」を排せ

Many voters must be feeling uneasy about the DPJ's crushing victory. Who could check the ruling party with an overwhelming majority in the Lower House? There are also concerns that the landslide could lead to friction within the party by enhancing the clout of former DPJ chief Ichiro Ozawa, who was fully in charge of the party's election campaign.
 民主党のあまりの圧勝ぶりには、新たな不安を覚える有権者も少なくなかろう。巨大与党に対してチェック機能をだれが果たせるのか。他方、選挙対策を一手に担った小沢一郎前代表の影響力が強まることで、民主党内にあつれきが生じないかも気がかりだ。

The DPJ should remember how the coalition government led by opposition leader Morihiro Hosokawa, which was born out of the LDP's slip from power in 1993, turned out to be short-lived under a "dual power" structure with Ozawa. Ozawa, then secretary-general of an opposition party, called the shots in forming the ruling alliance. This mistake must not be repeated. To allay public concerns about a replay of the Hosokawa government, Hatoyama's political leadership needs to be established solidly.
 93年の政権交代で生まれた細川内閣が、与党を仕切る小沢氏との「二重権力」のなかで短命に終わった歴史を思い出す。それを繰り返してはならない。国民の危惧(きぐ)をぬぐうには、鳩山首相のリーダーシップをはっきりと確立すべきだ。

From this point of view, it is important for Hatoyama, the chief executive of the government, to incorporate his clear policy visions and a schedule for policy implementation over the next four years into the budget bills for fiscal 2010.
 そのためにも、鳩山氏は来年度予算案に政権担当者としての明確な意思と4年間の行程表を練り込むことだ。

Will this election mark the beginning of a new "2009 regime" with constant opportunities for a change in government? That depends on the political performances of the two main parties in coming years.
 今回の総選挙を、政権交代の可能性が常に開かれた「2009年体制」への第一歩にできるかどうか。それは、2大政党のこれからにかかっている。

It won't be easy for the LDP to rebuild its power base. Still, the party should move quickly to make itself ready to return to power when the DPJ fails to fulfill its government mandate. That requires the party to face the factors behind its disastrous defeat in the election and take steps to reinvent itself.
 自民党の党勢立て直しは容易ではあるまい。それでも、民主党がしくじれば交代できる「政権準備党」の態勢を早く整えることだ。そのためには今回の敗因を正面から見据え、「新しい自民党」へ脱皮する作業が欠かせない。

The DPJ, which has become a huge voting bloc in the Lower House with a single-minded appeal for a change of government, now faces a tough test of its ability to define its political identity and lay out viable policy visions. The party must try to give the public clearer ideas about its identity in figuring out its relations with its expanded support base and clarifying its principles and positions concerning foreign and security policy issues.
 「とにかく政権交代」の掛け声で巨大政党に膨れあがった民主党は、交代を果たした後の自画像をどう描くかが今日から問われる。広がった支持基盤とどういう距離感をもつのか、外交・安全保障での理念やスタンスは……。「民主党とは何か」をもっと明確に出していかねばならない。

The work to give content to the just-opened political chapter has barely begun.
 新しくめくられた政治のページを埋めていく作業はこれからだ。

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社説:衆院選、民主圧勝 国民が日本を変えた 政権交代、維新の気概で

(Mainichi Japan) August 31, 2009
DPJ must fulfill promises it made to the public
社説:衆院選、民主圧勝 国民が日本を変えた 政権交代、維新の気概で

It was truly a watershed election. Heavyweights and veterans in the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) dropped like flies in battles against new, previously unknown candidates. It was evidence that the people categorically chose change, bringing about a historical transfer of power.
 まさに、怒濤(どとう)だ。自民党の派閥重鎮やベテランが、無名だった新人候補にバタバタと倒されていった。国民は断固として変化を選んだ。歴史に刻まれるべき政権の交代である。

The Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) won over 300 seats in the House of Representatives, marking a landslide victory and the establishment of a new government centered around the DPJ. Not only did the LDP fall from its position as the largest bloc in the chamber for the first time in history, it suffered a devastating defeat, decreasing its pre-election strength by nearly two-thirds. It signaled the collapse of the LDP-Komeito coalition government.
 衆院選は民主党が300議席を超す圧勝を収め、同党を中心とする政権の樹立が決まった。自民党は初めて衆院の第1党から転落するだけでなく議席が3分の1近くに激減する壊滅的大敗を喫し、自公政権は瓦解した。

Japan was long under a single-party rule, without the democratic convention of parties alternately taking the position of the ruling party through elections. The election on Sunday was the first time in post-war Japan that a government was selected front-on from between two major parties.
 選挙を通じ政権を担う第1党が交代する民主主義の常道が、日本の政治では長く行われずにいた。政権選択が2大勢力で正面から問われての政権交代は、戦後初めてである。

 ◇歴史的な体制の転換
Even while the public harbored apprehensions about the DPJ, it was the sense of urgency that there was no way out of the current deadlock without a political breakthrough that generated this tremendous seismic change. Many challenges await the new government to be headed by DPJ leader Yukio Hatoyama. It must bring about change without growing complacent in numbers, and with the spirit and readiness to revamp Japanese politics.
 民主党に不安を抱きながらも政治を刷新しなければ閉塞(へいそく)状況は打破できない、との国民の切迫感が、すさまじい地殻変動を生んだ。鳩山由紀夫代表を首相として発足する新政権の前途は多難だ。だが数をおごらず、政治を一新する維新の気概と覚悟で変化を国民に示さねばならない。

With the collapse of the LDP-Komeito coalition government, we have gone beyond what could be described as a shift in the political current, to something more akin to a revolution. The 70-percent voter turnout is evidence of the public's interest and determination to transform politics. The public's resoluteness was exemplified in the breakdown of traditional LDP strongholds. The public desire for change led to the replacement of old hands with younger generations.
 「風」などという段階をはるかに超え、革命的とすら言える自公政権への決別だ。約7割という投票率が国民の関心と、政治のあり方を変える強い意志を物語る。その象徴が、金城湯池とされた自民常勝区の崩壊だ。変化を求める民意は、世代交代による人材の入れ替えに発展した。

(この部分に対する英訳なし)
 政権交代と言えば、93年衆院選で成立した細川内閣も確かに非自民政権だ。だが、第1党はあくまで自民党で、争点は政治改革だった。保守合同による自民党誕生で成立した「55年体制」は同党が唯一、政権担当能力を持つ意味では続いていた。

(この部分に対する英訳なし)
 政権選択を目指し小選挙区が導入されて5回目の衆院選で、その体制についに終止符が打たれた。投票による政権交代という民主主義本来の機能回復を、私たちは政治の進歩として率直に評価したい。

Still, regardless of how easily a snowball effect can take place in a single-seat constituency system, the drastic changes that have occurred cannot be explained without looking at changes in Japan's political and social structure.
 それにしても、いかになだれ現象が小選挙区で起きやすいとはいえ、政治、社会の構造変化を抜きにこの激変は説明できまい。

The long-term basis of the LDP's solid governing structure was comprised of safeguarding the interests of industries and organizations, and administrative management carried out by bureaucrats. When the economy grew stagnant and various problems including the budget deficit further worsened, the reforms of former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi appeared on the scene. Calling for a smaller government, a facet of which was postal privatization, the LDP won an overwhelming victory in the 2005 general election. It appeared as though the party had made a comeback.
 自民党支配の源泉は業界・団体への利益配分、官僚による行政運営という強固な統治構造にあった。経済成長が行き詰まり、財政赤字などのひずみが深刻化する中で登場したのが小泉改革路線だ。郵政民営化など「小さな政府」を掲げ05年衆院選に圧勝、党は再生したかに見えた。

However, when the public's concerns for their livelihood surged with problems concerning healthcare, pensions, gaps between the rich and poor and rural impoverishment, the LDP struggled to come up with a new course of action. As the Diet lay "twisted" due to the party's crushing defeat in the House of Councillors election, two prime ministers stepped down in the middle of their tenures, exposing the party's inability to run the government. The public's dissatisfaction toward the government of Taro Aso, continually postponing dissolution while it remained incapable of wrapping up Koizumi's reforms, reached its peak.
 しかし、医療、年金、格差や地方の疲弊を通じ国民の生活不安が急速に強まり、党は路線見直しをめぐり迷走した。参院選惨敗に伴う「ねじれ国会」のなか、現職首相が2度も政権を投げ出し、政権担当能力の欠如を露呈した。小泉政治を総括できぬまま解散を引き延ばす麻生政権に、国民の不満は頂点に達した。

Furthermore, the LDP's vote-collecting machine comprised of industries, farmers and local assembly members rapidly deteriorated and fell apart as a result of Koizumi's structural reform policies. Second- and third-generation politicians held on to important posts and the party suffered a shortage of valuable human resources. It's hard to say with any certainty that Aso had the leadership qualities necessary to cope with various difficulties. The party suffered from systemic fatigue, and became, in effect, "broken."
 しかも、小泉路線の下、業界、農村、地方議員など党を支えた集票マシンは急速に衰え、離反した。2世、3世が幅を利かせ人材も不足した。麻生太郎首相が難局にあたるリーダーの資質を備えていたとは言い難い。制度疲労をきたし、自民党はまさに「壊れて」いたのだ。

The DPJ, on the other hand, advocating a transfer of power, succeeded in addressing such issues as people's livelihoods and a move away from bureaucrat-administered politics in its manifesto, even as the LDP remained unable to escape industry interests and bureaucratic meddling. The fact that voters chose the DPJ as the result of approximately 40 days of heated debate after the dissolution of the House of Representatives is of great significance.
 一方、政権交代をスローガンとする民主党は「生活重視」「脱官僚」をマニフェストに掲げ、自民党が業界重視、官僚主導から脱せぬ中、争点の提示に成功した。衆院解散から約40日の論戦の結果、有権者が民主党を選択した意味は重い。

Yet, setting sail after securing so many seats in the Lower House entails certain risks, for the greater the expectations, the greater the disappointment when those expectations go unfulfilled. It goes without saying that the DPJ must refrain from relying merely on the sheer number of its members in the Diet to direct the course of government. With the Upper House election set to take place next summer, the DPJ will be forced to show evidence that it has overhauled Japanese politics.
 だが、多数の議席を得た船出は、逆の意味で危うさをはらむ。期待がふくらむほど、裏切られた時の失望も大きい。数を頼みとする政権運営を戒めるべきことは当然だ。来年夏に参院選が控える。政治の変化の証明を待ったなしに迫られよう。

 ◇自民は解党的出直しを
The swift establishment of a framework that allows for political leadership is essential. Without a departure from the "bureaucratic Cabinet" system in which a vertically divided bureaucracy stands at the helm of administration, the DPJ may become a repeat of the Hosokawa Cabinet, which failed to steer the bureaucracy.
 政治主導が可能な体制の速やかな構築が必要だ。縦割り省庁が行政を主導し続けた「官僚内閣制」を脱却しないと、官僚操縦に失敗した細川内閣の二の舞いを演じかねない。

The party's currently vague diplomatic and security policies should also be defined through discussions with coalition parties. Voters have cast their precious votes to the DPJ knowing that doing so posed risks, including the fact that the party's measures to secure funding still remain unclear. The DPJ must take to heart that its members were not voted into government from an abundant faith in their ability to run it.
 あいまいな外交・安保政策も他党との連立協議の過程で明らかにすべきだ。国民は財源対策の説明のほころびなど、リスク承知で1票を投じた。政権担当能力を十分に信用しての圧勝と過信してはならない。

The LDP, too, has a heavy responsibility as the new opposition. The party's downfall was a result of its lingering in a position of comfort even as its raison d'etre was called into question with the end of the Cold War and the burst of the economic bubble. Without a comprehensive review of itself, the very survival of the party is in danger.
 野党となる自民党の役割も重い。そもそも東西冷戦終結やバブル経済が崩壊した時点で存在意義が問い直される中、政権に安住し続けたことが転落を招いた。真剣な総括なくしては、党存続もおぼつかない。

It's too early to say that the election has realized a two-party system between the LDP and DPJ. But the practice of determining the framework of government through elections must be firmly set in place.
 今選挙を民主、自民両党による2大政党政治の実現とみるのは早計だ。だが、選挙の審判で政権の枠組みを決するというルールは定着させねばならない。

Faced with many pressing issues, such as the economic crisis, public finances, pensions, and the rebuilding of the healthcare system, the new government has no choice but to fulfill the various promises it has made to the public.
 経済危機、財政、年金、医療の立て直しなど喫緊の課題は多い。新政権は、国民との約束である公約を実行してみせるしかない。

Finally, voters who handed the reins of government to the DPJ have a responsibility, too. Japan has entered an age in which now, more than ever, the public must participate in and monitor politics.
 そして、かじ取りを委ねた有権者にも責任がある。日本政治は、これまで以上に国民が当事者として参加、監視する新時代を迎えたのだ。

毎日新聞 2009年8月31日 東京朝刊

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政権移行始動 基本政策は継続性が重要だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 1, 2009)
Continuity important for basic policies
政権移行始動 基本政策は継続性が重要だ(9月1日付・読売社説)

Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama has begun the process of launching a new administration. It is important for Hatoyama, first and foremost, to divide the policies pledged in the DPJ's manifesto into those that should be implemented immediately and those that the party should take time to fine-tune.
 民主党の鳩山代表が、新政権発足に向けて動き出した。

 鳩山代表はまず、衆院選の政権公約のうち、直ちに実施すべき政策と、時間をかけて練り直すべき政策とを整理することが肝要だ。

The DPJ has said that a new "national strategy bureau" that it will establish under the direct control of the prime minister will serve as a control tower for the government's budget compilation and foreign policy.
 民主党は、首相直属機関として新設する「国家戦略局」に、予算編成や外交政策などの司令塔の役割を与えるとしている。

The central government ministries and agencies have submitted their respective budgetary requests for fiscal 2010 ahead of Monday's deadline. The DPJ, however, plans to review the budgetary request guidelines, which were approved by the Cabinet on July 1.
 来年度予算の概算要求は8月31日に締め切られ、各省庁が要求を提出した。だが、民主党は、7月1日に閣議了解された概算要求基準を見直す方針だ。

 ◆補正組み替えは慎重に◆
A total of 7.1 trillion yen will be needed in the next fiscal year to fund the child benefit program and other policies that the DPJ pledged in its manifesto. Although the DPJ has promised that an "administrative reform council," another new government body the DPJ plans to establish, will eliminate wasteful spending, can the necessary funds be squeezed out merely through belt-tightening measures?
 民主党が公約した子ども手当などの施策で、来年度に要する財源は7・1兆円だ。同じく新設される「行政刷新会議」で予算の無駄を排除していくというが、それだけで財源を捻出(ねんしゅつ)できるのか。

The DPJ also is studying making savings by cutting some expenditures in the fiscal 2009 supplementary budget and appropriating the saved funds for the fiscal 2010 budget. But the party should deal carefully with the review of the supplementary budget, which is supporting the nation's economy.
 民主党は、今年度補正予算を組み替えることで財源を浮かせ、来年度予算に充当することも検討中だ。だが、景気を下支えしている補正予算の見直しは、慎重に対応しなければならない。

Since the establishment of the national strategy bureau requires a revision of a related law, Hatoyama plans to first create a strategy office, which can be set up under a new government ordinance, and have it present the outline of the fiscal 2010 budget. Wasting time in creating the new organization, however, will end up delaying budget compilation.
 鳩山代表は、法改正が伴う国家戦略局新設の前に、政令などで設置できる「戦略室」で、来年度予算の大枠を示そうとしているが、組織作りに手間取ると、予算編成作業に遅れが出てしまう。

Hatoyama should take to heart the importance of implementing economic measures speedily.
 景気対策はスピードが大事なことを肝に銘じてほしい。

After being appointed prime minister at a special Diet session that is scheduled to be convened in the middle of this month, Hatoyama plans to visit the United States, where he will undertake summit diplomacy.
 鳩山代表は、今月中旬召集の特別国会で首相指名を受けた後、訪米し、首脳外交を展開する。

Hatoyama is scheduled to attend summit-level meetings on climate change and nuclear nonproliferation at the United Nations in New York and address the U.N. General Assembly. He also is scheduled to attend the Group of 20 financial summit meeting in Pittsburgh.
 国連で開かれる気候変動や核不拡散の首脳級会合に出席し、国連総会で演説する。金融サミット(G20)にも出席する予定だ。

===

Emissions pledge unrealistic
 ◆「25%公約」は避けよ◆

Observers, however, have already voiced concerns about how Hatoyama will handle a midterm target for reducing Japan's emissions of carbon dioxide and other global warming gases by the end of 2020.
 この首脳外交で早くも懸念されているのが、2020年までに二酸化炭素など温室効果ガスの排出量をどれだけ減らすかという中期目標の扱いだ。

The DPJ has proposed that the emissions of such gases be reduced by 25 percent from the 1990 levels.
 民主党は公約で、「1990年比で25%減」を掲げている。

If Hatoyama, as prime minister, repeats the DPJ's pledge at the General Assembly meeting or any other key international meetings, it is possible that Japan will be required to meet this numerical target under a successor treaty to the 2008-12 Kyoto Protocol being negotiated for conclusion by the end of December.
 鳩山代表が首相として、この数値目標を国連総会などで表明すれば、12月に交渉期限を迎える「ポスト京都議定書」では、最低でもこの削減目標が日本に割り当てられる可能性が高い。

The goal of reducing gas emissions by 25 percent from the 1990 levels will not be attainable merely with halfhearted energy-saving efforts. It requires innovative technological development. But there are limits to what Japan can achieve.
 「90年比25%減」は、生半可な省エネ努力だけで達成できる数値ではない。革新的な技術開発が必要だが、限界があろう。

Emissions cuts have economic side effects, such as downward pressure on gross domestic product, and damaging people's livelihoods.
排出削減には、国内総生産(GDP)の押し下げなど経済への副作用と国民生活への痛みも伴う。

The DPJ should take this power transfer as an opportunity to review the midterm target from a pragmatic perspective. At least, it should avoid the foolish act of constraining itself by presenting such a high target as an international pledge.
 民主党はこの際、現実的な視点で中期目標を見直すことが必要である。少なくとも、これを国際公約にして、自縄自縛に陥る愚は避けるべきだ。

Hatoyama has stated that a DPJ-led administration will need to respect the need for continuity in diplomatic and security policies, to a certain extent.
 鳩山代表は、「外交・安保の継続性もそれなりに認める必要がある」と述べている。

 ◆外交は日米基軸で臨め◆
The next step he needs to take is to tell world leaders that the power transfer will not change Japan's basic stance on diplomatic relations and build relationships of trust with them.
 政権交代によっても、日本の対外関係の基本に変化がないことを、各国首脳に伝え、信頼関係を築くことが大切だ。

===

Japan-U.S. alliance key

While in the United States, Hatoyama is expected to meet with U.S. President Barack Obama in their first Japan-U.S. summit talks. At that time, he should confirm that both countries will firmly uphold the Japan-U.S. alliance.
 鳩山代表は滞米中、オバマ大統領と初の日米首脳会談を行う際、日米同盟堅持を確認すべきだ。

The DPJ has maintained that the functions of the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station in Okinawa Prefecture should be transferred outside the prefecture or outside the country, although both countries have already agreed that the transfer will be made within the prefecture.
 民主党は、日米間で合意している米海兵隊普天間飛行場の沖縄県内移設について、県外か、国外への移設を主張している。

A review of the transfer agreement is equivalent to breach of the bilateral promise, which would inevitably damage the relationship of mutual trust between Japan and the United States.
 しかし、移設見直しは、日米合意を破棄するに等しく、同盟関係を損なうのは必至だ。

Hatoyama also said that his party would study enshrining into law Japan's three nonnuclear principles: Nuclear weapons shall not be developed, possessed or brought into Japan. Concerning the third principle, Hatoyama said he would ask Obama to clarify that the United States will not bring nuclear weapons into Japan. Such a request would be regarded as an abrogation of the U.S. military's nuclear deterrent role.
 鳩山代表は、非核三原則について「法制化を検討」し、三原則のうち「持ち込ませず」を明確化するよう大統領に求めるとも語っている。これでは米軍の核抑止力を否定していると受け止められてしまうのではないか。

The DPJ has argued that the Japan-U.S. relationship should be one between equals, but Hatoyama should not cling to abstract logic that lacks backing with concrete policy measures and make remarks that may undermine the bilateral alliance.
 民主党は「対等な日米関係」を主張するが、具体的政策の裏付けを欠く抽象論に固執し、同盟関係を弱体化させるような言動は慎むべきだ。

===

DPJ shouldn't cave in to SDP

During the campaign period for the House of Representatives election, Hatoyama vacillated on the Maritime Self-Defense Force's mission to refuel vessels of other countries in the Indian Ocean as part of antiterrorism operations. He initially said it would be maintained for the time being, but later said the mission would not be extended after January next year.
 鳩山代表は、衆院選の最中、インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動をめぐって、「当面は継続する」「来年1月以降は延長しない」などと、発言が揺らいだ。

The Social Democratic Party, which the DPJ views as a prospective coalition partner, has been calling for Japan to immediately withdraw from the Indian Ocean mission.
 民主党が連立政権協議を呼びかけた社民党は、インド洋からの即時撤退を主張している。

On the antipiracy mission in waters off Somalia, the DPJ says it would allow the MSDF to be deployed, but the SDP opposes such a move. In its negotiations with the SDP on forming a coalition, the DPJ should not make easy concessions.
 ソマリア沖での海賊対策について、民主党は自衛隊の活用を認めるとしているが、社民党は反対だ。連立協議で民主党は、安易な妥協をしてはなるまい。

The DPJ must clearly demonstrate both at home and abroad a policy of continuity in respect of these issues as soon as possible.
 民主党は、いずれの活動についても「継続」する方針を、早期に内外に明示すべきである。

Meanwhile, North Korea's nuclear missile development will continue to pose a serious threat to Japan, even after the administration changes. Together with the issue of the abduction of Japanese nationals by North Korean agents, the problem cannot be overlooked.
 北朝鮮の核ミサイル開発は、日本にとって引き続き重大な脅威である。日本人拉致問題と合わせ、看過できない。

In the last ordinary Diet session, the DPJ refused to enter deliberations on various bills after it and other parties passed a censure motion against Prime Minister Taro Aso. As a result, a bill to enable inspections of North Korean cargo was scrapped.
 民主党は通常国会で、麻生首相問責決議を可決後、審議拒否に入り、結果として北朝鮮貨物検査特別措置法案は廃案になった。

The bill was designed to smoothly carry out the U.N. Security Council's resolution on sanctions against North Korea. It is indispensable that the bill pass the Diet as soon as possible.
 この法案は、北朝鮮に対する国連安全保障理事会の制裁決議を履行するためのものだ。速やかに成立させることが不可欠だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 1, 2009)
(2009年9月1日01時28分  読売新聞)

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