Fri, 21 November 2008
November 21, 2008; Volume 04, Number 32
Thanks for joining me today for our Third Anniversary Show! Yup! Three years. A lifetime in the podcast world. With an archive chuck-full of the audio files and transcripts from past programs.
This week we conclude our discussion of political reform, or "seiji kaikaku." And then try to apply the concepts we've been considering to Prime Minister Taro Aso. Is he a Reformist or a Traditionalist? I conclude he's a Traditionalist who just happens to be able to give a wonderful stump speech! And, of course, we consider the significance of all this for the future of Japan's domestic politics.
Next week I hope to focus on the timing of the next general election, and what that tells us about parliamentary politics in Japan. And Japan's reaction to the election of Senator Barak Obama as president of the United States.
Fri, 14 November 2008
November 14, 2008; Volume 04, Number 31
Thanks for dropping in again this Friday. We're slowly getting back to our regular weekly schedule. Hopefully, it will last. But no promises.
This week we return to the Tamogami Essay Incident, considering General Tamogami's testimony before the Upper House Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee on Tuesday, and the reaction to that testimony. We also consider the significance of 94 additional active duty Air Self Defense Force officers submitting essays for the same contest, and what that means for military discipline and supervision of military training.
Then, at long last, we return to the topic of political reform, or 'seiji kaikaku' that we began considering week before last. And nearly complete it before the Old Clock on the Screen went into emergency blinking.
Thanks too for your e-mailed messages. Your comments and suggestions for the program are most helpful. Agree or disagree, they're all valuable. So keep 'em coming.
Fri, 7 November 2008
November 7 , 2008; Volume 04, Number 30Click here for a transcript of today's program
It's Friday again. Here in the Mobile Studio, at Lake Wateree State Park. And I'm still on schedule. Remarkable, given all that's been going on around here. This week we have another "extended program," to put it politely. That is, one far longer than our agreed-upon 25 minutes or so. And I didn't even get to complete discussion of political reform, or "seiji kaikaku"!
This week we take a look at the latest Ministry of Defense flap. This one concerning the behavior of a senior uniformed officer, Air Force Chief of Staff, Toshio Tamogami. Who's written an essay in which he flatly contradicts important aspects of Japan's foreign policies. Knowing the essay would be published for all to read and comment upon. Quite a serious issue. And one that takes some time to consider responsibly.
Then we consider the timing of the next general election. With focus on the motivations of Prime Minister Aso and the opposition parties. This issue too is more complex than it might first appear to be. So, by the end of a discussion that only scratches the surface, we're well over time. Though I think it's important to consider the significance of public funding on the timing, and the actual effect of the election, once it's held.
Again, thanks for the e-mailed comments and suggestions for the program. I read every one of them. And take them into consideration when planning future programs. Keep 'em coming!
Fri, 31 October 2008
Program for October 31, 2008; Volume 04, Number 29
It's Friday again. And I'm back on schedule, it seems. Well, for a while, anyway. It's hard to tell these days what the next week will bring. Thanks for tuning in.
Today we begin with by considering some significant recent international developments. First, reaction from Asia's major capitals to election of Taro Aso as Japan's prime minister. Then Chinese reaction to Prime Minister Aso's visit to Beijing on October 24th. And the speech Aso gave in the Great Hall of the People. Then a brief look at Japan's continuing reaction to Washington's decision to remove North Korea from the Department of State's list of terror-sponsoring nations.
Program before last I promised to take a closer look at the meaning of "reform." And finally on this program I have the first part of that complex subject. What is "political reform"? What are the objectives of Japan's political reformers. And so on. Not enough time to finish the consideration. So that will have to wait until the next program. Hopefully, next week.
As always, thanks for your attention to the Japan Considered Podcast.