Sunday, August 7, 2011

MUSINGS / July 14, 2011

The Yomiuri Shimbun

The following is a translation of the Henshu Techo column from The Yomiuri Shimbun's July 14 issue.

* * *

From a conversation between two women:

"I won't get married until I turn 30."

"I won't turn 30 until I get married."

This is from the book "Otona no joku" (Jokes for adults) written by Minoru Baba, part of the Bunshun Shinsho paperback series published by Bungeishunju Ltd.

Here is a more timely version of the conversation, which you cannot laugh at.

"I won't resign as prime minister until plans for quake disaster relief are settled."

"I won't settle plans for quake disaster relief until I resign as prime minister."

I feel like I have to make such a sarcastic analogy whenever I am watching Prime Minister Naoto Kan. I wonder what his true intentions are for reviewing the nation's energy policy in the long run considering he has already said he would resign. In doing so, he pushed aside important legislation that urgently needs passing, including a bill to allow the government to issue deficit-covering bonds for reconstruction measures, even though the legislation is what would enable quake disaster relief plans to be settled.

The prime minister held a press conference Wednesday to announce that he wants to phase out nuclear energy. If such a declaration were made under a prime minister who had control over his Cabinet and ruling party, with thorough discussions having been made on both the pros and cons of the plan and concrete plans to achieve it having been shown, it cannot be denied that a shift from nuclear energy could be considered a political ideal.

But Kan lacks everything in this regard. It is just like: "I will look to the future because I don't want to resign and I won't have to settle disaster relief plans."

A person who is moving out of his house soon should not be undertaking new projects such as reroofing or repainting. He should be packing, cleaning up his mess and preparing to leave.

(Jul. 18, 2011)

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