[East Asia] - Year of the Plague

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  • MazzyxMazzyx Comedy Gold Registered User regular
    Trace wrote: »
    Trace wrote: »
    https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/28/asia/shinzo-abe-japan-resignation-health-intl-hnk/index.html
    Shinzo Abe, the longest-serving Japanese prime minister in history, has resigned, citing health reasons.
    "Even though there is one year to go in my tenure and there are challenges to be met, I have decided to stand down as prime minister," said Abe at a press conference in Tokyo on Friday, adding that he would like to apologize to the people of Japan for being unable to fulfill his duties during the coronavirus pandemic.

    Abe is resigning.

    I wonder why. Is this the equivalent of resigning to spend more time with your family?

    He's got colitis. It's what caused him to resign the first time around.

    Can't stand the man personally but running a world government with colitis is just... ouch.

    He has been in and out of the hospital for the last few weeks as well. I mean I call him asshole Abe but its a legit reason. Also the dude had an approval rating of like 20%, there is just no actual opposition in Japan which is basically a one party system.

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  • TraceTrace GNU Terry Pratchett; GNU Gus; GNU Carrie Fisher; GNU Adam We Registered User regular
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    Trace wrote: »
    Trace wrote: »
    https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/28/asia/shinzo-abe-japan-resignation-health-intl-hnk/index.html
    Shinzo Abe, the longest-serving Japanese prime minister in history, has resigned, citing health reasons.
    "Even though there is one year to go in my tenure and there are challenges to be met, I have decided to stand down as prime minister," said Abe at a press conference in Tokyo on Friday, adding that he would like to apologize to the people of Japan for being unable to fulfill his duties during the coronavirus pandemic.

    Abe is resigning.

    I wonder why. Is this the equivalent of resigning to spend more time with your family?

    He's got colitis. It's what caused him to resign the first time around.

    Can't stand the man personally but running a world government with colitis is just... ouch.

    He has been in and out of the hospital for the last few weeks as well. I mean I call him asshole Abe but its a legit reason. Also the dude had an approval rating of like 20%, there is just no actual opposition in Japan which is basically a one party system.

    It is letting him get out of the whole Olympics snaffle too. There's no way that's going to turn out good.

    Kayne Red Robe
  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    The Uighur situation is so horrifying it’s almost giving credence to the Republican idea that we should be more closely aligned with Russia over China, because evil as Putin is, at least he’s not running a new holocaust.

  • SealSeal Registered User regular
    The Uighur situation is so horrifying it’s almost giving credence to the Republican idea that we should be more closely aligned with Russia over China, because evil as Putin is, at least he’s not running a new holocaust.

    Don't worry Putin is cool with parts of Russia operating extermination campaigns against LGBT people. Plenty of evil to go around outside of his standard authoritarian kleptocrat stuff.

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  • KrieghundKrieghund Registered User regular
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    shrykeGiantGeek2020SmrtnikKayne Red Robe
  • daveNYCdaveNYC Why universe hate Waspinator? Registered User regular
    Krieghund wrote: »
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    Muslims are about 10% of the population in Russia, so they probably wouldn't be too horribly off. Certainly better there then in China.

    Shut up, Mr. Burton! You were not brought upon this world to get it!
  • CouscousCouscous Registered User regular
    Is there any good explanation anywhere of why Japan pretty much has a one party system? Like does the way the government works favor it?

  • MazzyxMazzyx Comedy Gold Registered User regular
    Couscous wrote: »
    Is there any good explanation anywhere of why Japan pretty much has a one party system? Like does the way the government works favor it?

    A 1950's election law basically makes it extremely hard for modern campaigning helping to maintain power. The current one party in charge has been in charge since then outside a few small exceptions. The actual electoral system on paper is fine. There is also a low voter turnout and low voter interaction. Some folks point towards cultural and social engineering to maintain the party in power. Also a lot of the real power is the bureaucracy which is highly integrated with the major corporations who can push a lot of levers of power.

    Even more so a lot of power centers aren't much different from pre-war Japan. Many of the leaders are tied to the same families. Basically a lot of structural rules, voter disinterest/disconnect, corporate integration into the government, and family ties.

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  • QuidQuid I don't... what... hnnng Registered User regular
    edited August 28
    I'd guess the same reason why a lot of things in their government remain static. To express doubt in the current government leaders is to express doubt in the current status quo. Not illegal but culturally frowned upon.

    Edit: Also what Mazzyx said ^^^

    Quid on
    Kana
  • Jealous DevaJealous Deva Registered User regular
    daveNYC wrote: »
    Krieghund wrote: »
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    Muslims are about 10% of the population in Russia, so they probably wouldn't be too horribly off. Certainly better there then in China.

    Yeah, Russia has had a long history of at least detent with its muslim populations. Not saying the Uighers would fit right in, but they wouldn’t be mass-exterminated.

    CelestialBadger
  • MazzyxMazzyx Comedy Gold Registered User regular
    daveNYC wrote: »
    Krieghund wrote: »
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    Muslims are about 10% of the population in Russia, so they probably wouldn't be too horribly off. Certainly better there then in China.

    Yeah, Russia has had a long history of at least detent with its muslim populations. Not saying the Uighers would fit right in, but they wouldn’t be mass-exterminated.

    I mean as long as you ignore Chechnya and their treatment of the Muslim population there. It's more the Russians don't care if you kowtow to Moscow most of the the time.

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  • Jealous DevaJealous Deva Registered User regular
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    daveNYC wrote: »
    Krieghund wrote: »
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    Muslims are about 10% of the population in Russia, so they probably wouldn't be too horribly off. Certainly better there then in China.

    Yeah, Russia has had a long history of at least detent with its muslim populations. Not saying the Uighers would fit right in, but they wouldn’t be mass-exterminated.

    I mean as long as you ignore Chechnya and their treatment of the Muslim population there. It's more the Russians don't care if you kowtow to Moscow most of the the time.

    Well, Islam was an element in Chechnya but the bigger issue was Chechnyan separatism IIRC.

    Kayne Red Robe
  • daveNYCdaveNYC Why universe hate Waspinator? Registered User regular
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    daveNYC wrote: »
    Krieghund wrote: »
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    Muslims are about 10% of the population in Russia, so they probably wouldn't be too horribly off. Certainly better there then in China.

    Yeah, Russia has had a long history of at least detent with its muslim populations. Not saying the Uighers would fit right in, but they wouldn’t be mass-exterminated.

    I mean as long as you ignore Chechnya and their treatment of the Muslim population there. It's more the Russians don't care if you kowtow to Moscow most of the the time.

    Well, Islam was an element in Chechnya but the bigger issue was Chechnyan separatism IIRC.

    The biggest issue was Putin looking to cement himself in power with a Make Russia Great Again war.

    Shut up, Mr. Burton! You were not brought upon this world to get it!
    GiantGeek2020zagdrobFencingsax
  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    daveNYC wrote: »
    Krieghund wrote: »
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    Muslims are about 10% of the population in Russia, so they probably wouldn't be too horribly off. Certainly better there then in China.

    Yeah, Russia has had a long history of at least detent with its muslim populations. Not saying the Uighers would fit right in, but they wouldn’t be mass-exterminated.

    I mean as long as you ignore Chechnya and their treatment of the Muslim population there. It's more the Russians don't care if you kowtow to Moscow most of the the time.

    Yeah, the current regime seems less concerned with enforcing cultural uniformity then the Chinese. Putin is pushing the culture war buttons for sure but that seems more as a way to solidify support imo rather then a move towards re-educating minority populations like what Beijing is up to.

  • MazzyxMazzyx Comedy Gold Registered User regular
    shryke wrote: »
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    daveNYC wrote: »
    Krieghund wrote: »
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    Muslims are about 10% of the population in Russia, so they probably wouldn't be too horribly off. Certainly better there then in China.

    Yeah, Russia has had a long history of at least detent with its muslim populations. Not saying the Uighers would fit right in, but they wouldn’t be mass-exterminated.

    I mean as long as you ignore Chechnya and their treatment of the Muslim population there. It's more the Russians don't care if you kowtow to Moscow most of the the time.

    Yeah, the current regime seems less concerned with enforcing cultural uniformity then the Chinese. Putin is pushing the culture war buttons for sure but that seems more as a way to solidify support imo rather then a move towards re-educating minority populations like what Beijing is up to.

    The Haninization of China has been a push by the CCP for 60-70 years. It just has ramped up in recent years. It has been pretty successful in places like Tibet already where they moved so many Han Chinese in they start out numbering the native Tibetans. They have been doing the same in Xinjiang for a while and working on reducing minority solidarity and strength their regions.

    Its a mix of control and supremacy mixed with Stalinist views on race and culture. Basically a fully toxic mix.

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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    daveNYC wrote: »
    Krieghund wrote: »
    Plus, didn't Putin make Eastern Orthodox the state religion? I can't believe the Uighurs would be treated all that much better in Russia. Maybe there'd still be a genocide going on, maybe not.

    Muslims are about 10% of the population in Russia, so they probably wouldn't be too horribly off. Certainly better there then in China.

    Yeah, Russia has had a long history of at least detent with its muslim populations. Not saying the Uighers would fit right in, but they wouldn’t be mass-exterminated.

    I mean as long as you ignore Chechnya and their treatment of the Muslim population there. It's more the Russians don't care if you kowtow to Moscow most of the the time.

    Yeah, the current regime seems less concerned with enforcing cultural uniformity then the Chinese. Putin is pushing the culture war buttons for sure but that seems more as a way to solidify support imo rather then a move towards re-educating minority populations like what Beijing is up to.

    The Haninization of China has been a push by the CCP for 60-70 years. It just has ramped up in recent years. It has been pretty successful in places like Tibet already where they moved so many Han Chinese in they start out numbering the native Tibetans. They have been doing the same in Xinjiang for a while and working on reducing minority solidarity and strength their regions.

    Its a mix of control and supremacy mixed with Stalinist views on race and culture. Basically a fully toxic mix.

    Russia had similar policies under the USSR. And earlier.

    Kayne Red Robe
  • CouscousCouscous Registered User regular
    Basically genocide and ethnic cleansing that they pretend is part of socialism.

    shrykeFencingsax
  • CouscousCouscous Registered User regular
    https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/alison_killing/satellite-images-investigation-xinjiang-detention-camps
    Blanked-Out Spots On China's Maps Helped Us Uncover Xinjiang's Camps

    China's Baidu blanked out parts of its mapping platform. We used those locations to find a network of buildings bearing the hallmarks of prisons and internment camps in Xinjiang. Here's how we did it.
    Having established that we could probably find internment camps in this way, we examined Baidu's satellite tiles for the whole of Xinjiang, including the blank masking tiles, which formed a separate layer on the map. We analyzed the masked locations by comparing them to up-to-date imagery from Google Earth, the European Space Agency’s Sentinel Hub, and Planet Labs.

    In total there were 5 million masked tiles across Xinjiang. They seemed to cover any area of even the slightest strategic importance — military bases and training grounds, prisons, power plants, but also mines and some commercial and industrial facilities. There were far too many locations for us to sort through, so we narrowed it down by focusing on the areas around cities and towns and major roads.
    We quickly began to notice how large many of these places are — and how heavily securitized they appear to be, compared to the earlier known camps. In site layout, architecture, and security features, they bear greater resemblance to other prisons across China than to the converted schools and hospitals that formed the earlier camps in Xinjiang. The newer compounds are also built to last, in a way that the earlier conversions weren’t. The perimeter walls are made of thick concrete, for example, which takes much longer to build and perhaps later demolish, than the barbed wire fencing that characterizes the early camps.
    Finally, you need a large plot of land for a prison, preferably with space to expand in the future, and this is what the recently developed industrial estates offer: large, serviced plots, close to existing towns and cities. Building in industrial estates also places the camps close to factories for forced labor. While many camps have factories within their compounds, in several cases that we know of detainees are bused to other factory sites to work.
    China is very clearly going for a long haul with its concentration camps.

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  • cckerberoscckerberos Registered User regular
    edited August 29
    Couscous wrote: »
    Is there any good explanation anywhere of why Japan pretty much has a one party system? Like does the way the government works favor it?

    The current one party system in Japan is different from the one that existed from 1955 to 1993, even if the new party system features the same dominant party (the Liberal Democratic Party) and there are still some of the same structural elements in place. The end of the Cold War made it much more acceptable for factions to break away from parties and switch sides and when the opposition managed to gain power in 1993, they reformed the electoral system in an attempt to undermine some of the LDP's strength.

    The opposition were in power from 1993 to 1996 and their reforms did have an effect. The LDP managed to regain power from 1996 to 2005, but only barely. They won only a minority of seats during the three elections that took place during this period and had to enter a coalition with other parties each time. Backed by an unusually popular and charismatic prime minister (Koizumi Jun'ichiro), the party did manage to win a landslide victory in 2005, but this was only a momentary return to form. In 2009, the main opposition party (the Democratic Party) won an even bigger landslide, gaining 60%+ of seats in the Diet. The opposition was back in power and this was the event that led to the current LDP dominance.

    I was living in Japan at the time and the enthusiasm for the new DPJ government was massive. It was like when Obama won. Yes, the opposition had been in power a decade or so earlier, but that had been a ramshackle coalition of eight parties. The DPJ had an outright majority and the expectations for change were huge... which meant that the disappointment was massive when they didn't deliver. I won't get into the reasons here, but they weren't able to follow through on their promises. They also had the misfortune of being in power during the Great East Japan Earthquake and Fukushima nuclear disaster. The DPJ went through three prime ministers in its four years in power before having to hold another election in which it was crushed.

    The DPJ government from 2009 to 2012 is considered a fiasco and the lesson the public took from it was that the opposition was not ready to govern. Currently, the Abe government has a support rating of 34% and 35.5% of the public back the LDP. That's not good. That's worse than Trump. But the main opposition party, the Constitutional Democrats? They have 4.2% support, which is just... unbelievably terrible. 43.3% of the public say they don't back any party. So even though they don't much like the LDP, when your average voter walks into the voting booth, they have a choice between the boring guys who have been in power forever and those guys who can't be trusted with power. And they vote LDP by default.

    In a way, the LDP is stronger than it has ever been. Even during the party's old glory days at the height of the Cold War, the Socialists did well enough to keep the LDP honest. The LDP knew that if they screwed up, they might lose the next election. Now? They're almost unopposed.

    TLDR: the Liberal Democratic Party benefits from being longtime incumbents and wins almost by default. Faced with no serious opposition (a relatively recent development), voters just shrug and vote for the guys who have always been in power.

    cckerberos on
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  • cckerberoscckerberos Registered User regular
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    Couscous wrote: »
    Is there any good explanation anywhere of why Japan pretty much has a one party system? Like does the way the government works favor it?

    A 1950's election law basically makes it extremely hard for modern campaigning helping to maintain power. The current one party in charge has been in charge since then outside a few small exceptions. The actual electoral system on paper is fine. There is also a low voter turnout and low voter interaction. Some folks point towards cultural and social engineering to maintain the party in power. Also a lot of the real power is the bureaucracy which is highly integrated with the major corporations who can push a lot of levers of power.

    Even more so a lot of power centers aren't much different from pre-war Japan. Many of the leaders are tied to the same families. Basically a lot of structural rules, voter disinterest/disconnect, corporate integration into the government, and family ties.

    Voter turnout isn't particularly bad in Japan. They had 70% turnout as recently as 2009. Now, that's nosedived over the past decade (ever since the DPJ government fell), but it's still comparable to that of the US.

    Otherwise, what you've written isn't wrong per se but... it's the stereotypical 1955 System response, one that could have been written in 1985. Things have changed since then, even if we're still trying to come to grips with how.

  • cckerberoscckerberos Registered User regular
    Trace wrote: »
    https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/28/asia/shinzo-abe-japan-resignation-health-intl-hnk/index.html
    Shinzo Abe, the longest-serving Japanese prime minister in history, has resigned, citing health reasons.
    "Even though there is one year to go in my tenure and there are challenges to be met, I have decided to stand down as prime minister," said Abe at a press conference in Tokyo on Friday, adding that he would like to apologize to the people of Japan for being unable to fulfill his duties during the coronavirus pandemic.

    Abe is resigning.

    He held on just long enough to become the longest continuously serving Japanese prime minister.

    Which I take as a personal affront as I have a translation of a biography of the previous holder of the title coming out later this year (we had to change the title because of it).

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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    cckerberos wrote: »
    Trace wrote: »
    https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/28/asia/shinzo-abe-japan-resignation-health-intl-hnk/index.html
    Shinzo Abe, the longest-serving Japanese prime minister in history, has resigned, citing health reasons.
    "Even though there is one year to go in my tenure and there are challenges to be met, I have decided to stand down as prime minister," said Abe at a press conference in Tokyo on Friday, adding that he would like to apologize to the people of Japan for being unable to fulfill his duties during the coronavirus pandemic.

    Abe is resigning.

    He held on just long enough to become the longest continuously serving Japanese prime minister.

    Which I take as a personal affront as I have a translation of a biography of the previous holder of the title coming out later this year (we had to change the title because of it).

    It's always funny when politicians do this because everyone knows what they are up to.

    cckerberosGiantGeek2020Fencingsax
  • MazzyxMazzyx Comedy Gold Registered User regular
    cckerberos wrote: »
    Mazzyx wrote: »
    Couscous wrote: »
    Is there any good explanation anywhere of why Japan pretty much has a one party system? Like does the way the government works favor it?

    A 1950's election law basically makes it extremely hard for modern campaigning helping to maintain power. The current one party in charge has been in charge since then outside a few small exceptions. The actual electoral system on paper is fine. There is also a low voter turnout and low voter interaction. Some folks point towards cultural and social engineering to maintain the party in power. Also a lot of the real power is the bureaucracy which is highly integrated with the major corporations who can push a lot of levers of power.

    Even more so a lot of power centers aren't much different from pre-war Japan. Many of the leaders are tied to the same families. Basically a lot of structural rules, voter disinterest/disconnect, corporate integration into the government, and family ties.

    Voter turnout isn't particularly bad in Japan. They had 70% turnout as recently as 2009. Now, that's nosedived over the past decade (ever since the DPJ government fell), but it's still comparable to that of the US.

    Otherwise, what you've written isn't wrong per se but... it's the stereotypical 1955 System response, one that could have been written in 1985. Things have changed since then, even if we're still trying to come to grips with how.

    Things have changed but I would say the overall trend hasn't. Hell when I was living there in '09 where I was it wasn't a shift in local politics or campaigning. I remember reading articles in 2011-2012 about the very 1955 law, even with the post 90's reform were causing outreach issues including blocking online outreach. One of the better interviews was a young diet member who had to shutdown per the law for the campaign season which was his major route of outreach with younger voters. Younger voter turnout in Japan isn't much better verse any western Democracy though.

    The lack of a proper opposition party though is a huge issue in Japan. I remember a few years back the Communist were one of the largest gainers in parliamentary elections. Not because all the sudden they were becoming a power house they were just the only opposition to incumbent LDP politicians.

    Though I think the underlying structural issues are still there. Family ties are still very powerful with in the Japanese political class. The bureaucracy still wields an inordinate amount of power in the government and are still heavily integrated with major conglomerates.

    I do think it is going to be a rough period. Abe has not heir apperant. LDP is not what I would call a strong party but no one is able to take advantage of it. I doubt you will see a coalition counter like you have seen in Israel with the Blue and White party. It isn't quiet like England either with Labor in disarray but still a strong party in its own right the DPJ is pretty shattered at the moment and I haven't seen anyone trying to pick up the pieces.

    Also turnout isn't the only measure of voter interaction but I was looking at recent turnout not say turnout in the mid-2000's that was a very different turnout.

    I am curious if the push to reform or remove Article 9 is dead or not. The underlying pressure to remove it hasn't gone away but Abe was very much the unfavorable face at a national level.

    The other area that would be interesting to see is if one tries to pick up Abenomics again especially the push to reform the workplace to make it more inclusive for women. There was minimal success but a huge push back actually from industry more than anything. It might be an interesting opening in Japanese politics.

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  • cckerberoscckerberos Registered User regular
    In the absence of some immediate, overwhelming danger, I don't see any Japanese politician being brave enough to embark on the kind of systemic reforms that the country needs. As with climate change, the looming demographic cliff is an obvious danger but one far enough away that taking the needed steps to ameliorate the damage would have to many immediate political costs for any leader to take the plunge.

    The two figures that have put their hats in the ring to succeed Abe are Ishiba and Kishida. I don't know enough about either, really. All I know about Ishiba is that he's a defense expert (I actually have a book he wrote on collective self-defense but I haven't read it) and that he's run against Abe in every election for party leader since 2012 (when he nearly won). And I guess Kishida is supposedly a moderate in the party?

    Both have voiced their support for constitutional revision but honestly, I don't see that going anywhere. It was really Abe's passion project and if he couldn't get anywhere with it...

    There are supposedly people pushing for Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga to run and I guess he would be the closest things to a successor to Abe since the two have been so connected.

    And I guess Aso Taro is considered to have a good shot at it? That's hard for me to believe. He's 79 years old, was a miserable failure the last time he served as prime minister, and is constantly in the news for making gaffes. But I guess that would make him the perfect prime minister for 2020...

  • MayabirdMayabird Pecking at the keyboardRegistered User regular
    The Uighur genocide has been going so well for China that they're moving in on the Tibetans, forcing thousands into new brainwashing/forced labor camps. They probably haven't started sterilizations yet, but China didn't immediately start that with the Uighur either, working their way up from usual harassment to "re-education" for some to just working to annihilate everyone, even hunting down refugees that fled the country.

    There's a reason why Hong Kong's protesters work very hard to spread the word about the Uighur. They know that Xi's government is going after everyone, one group at a time.

    GiantGeek2020CelestialBadgerFencingsaxRaijukime
  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    Why the fuck is everyone playing Secret Hitler right now?

    GiantGeek2020
  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    China has been gearing up for this for a long time.

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  • RaijuRaiju regular Registered User regular
    cckerberos wrote: »
    In the absence of some immediate, overwhelming danger, I don't see any Japanese politician being brave enough to embark on the kind of systemic reforms that the country needs. As with climate change, the looming demographic cliff is an obvious danger but one far enough away that taking the needed steps to ameliorate the damage would have to many immediate political costs for any leader to take the plunge.

    The two figures that have put their hats in the ring to succeed Abe are Ishiba and Kishida. I don't know enough about either, really. All I know about Ishiba is that he's a defense expert (I actually have a book he wrote on collective self-defense but I haven't read it) and that he's run against Abe in every election for party leader since 2012 (when he nearly won). And I guess Kishida is supposedly a moderate in the party?

    Both have voiced their support for constitutional revision but honestly, I don't see that going anywhere. It was really Abe's passion project and if he couldn't get anywhere with it...

    There are supposedly people pushing for Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga to run and I guess he would be the closest things to a successor to Abe since the two have been so connected.

    And I guess Aso Taro is considered to have a good shot at it? That's hard for me to believe. He's 79 years old, was a miserable failure the last time he served as prime minister, and is constantly in the news for making gaffes. But I guess that would make him the perfect prime minister for 2020...

    Abe's replacement Suga is his own piece of work. When asked about why Japan's Covid-19 infected numbers were so low earlier this year, he responded at the time that (paraphrasing) that the Japanese people were just genetically superior and more naturally resistant if not immune to the effects of the coronavirus.

    My wife and I can't roll our eyes far enough into the backs of our heads with that boneheaded comment that certainly did not age well.

  • MayabirdMayabird Pecking at the keyboardRegistered User regular
    Between the coronavirus pandemic, the massive flooding, and African swine fever, China is having food shortages. Not in crisis (yet?) but prices are soaring and Beijing is pushing anti-wastage programs.

    And with the global pandemic, various extreme climate-induced weather patterns around the world, and global trade being disrupted, food shortages and sharp price increases are likely to be seen around the world.

    GiantGeek2020JragghenkimeRaiju
  • MillMill Registered User regular
    To add to that the swine plague that killed so many of their domesticated pigs has managed to find it's way to the border of Germany. As a result they are no longer importing German raised pork products IIRC. Not sure if that's valid precaution or not. I suppose with China's track record on their businesses doing some really stupid and shitty things. It could be a valid approach if they are worried about some idiot feeding raw pork that could have the disease to live pigs for some dumbass reason. I also want to say there are probably a few other places they might be refusing imports from for one reason or a not, not count the US because well Trump's shit trade war is it's own special case of stupidity and that falls on Trump.

    Raiju
  • MayabirdMayabird Pecking at the keyboardRegistered User regular
    South Asia instead of strictly East Asia, but there's not a particular thread for it and this seems important: There are massive anti-monarchy protests in Thailand, concentrated in Bangkok of course but in other cities as well across the country. It's illegal to insult the king (punishable by upwards of 15 years in prison) but the new king is a corrupt parasitic lout who's spent the entire pandemic in a party penthouse in Germany, Red Death Masquing it up with all the drugs and prostitutes he can buy, which is a lot (since the Thai monarchy controls tens of billions of dollars in assets).

    Police have been trying to arrest protest leaders, but it's so intensely grassroots that more leaders pop up faster than they're being arrested, and the Thai protesters have adopted Hong Kong methods while also having more open social media to work with. This could end up being a big deal, so it's something to keep watching.

    CelestialBadgershrykeFencingsaxGiantGeek2020Raiju
  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    Looks like there's some regional powers which are moving to try to contain China sans US, with Japan leading the way as the arms dealer.

    https://www.usnews.com/news/business/articles/2020-10-19/japan-vietnam-agree-to-boost-defense-economic-energy-ties
    Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, in his first overseas summit since taking office last month, agreed with his Vietnamese counterpart to step up defense and security cooperation in the face of China's expanding influence in the region.

    In talks in Hanoi on Monday, Suga and Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc set a basic agreement allowing Japan to export defense equipment and technology to Vietnam. Japan has been pursuing such pacts in recent years to bolster ties with Southeast Asia and sustain its own defense industry.

    Suga said his four-day trip to Vietnam and later Indonesia was key to pursuing multilateral economic and security cooperation to counter China’s growing power and protect sea lanes in disputed areas of the South China Sea.

    “Vietnam is crucial to achieving our vision of ‘the Free and Open Indo-Pacific,’ and our valuable partner,’” Suga told a news conference after his meeting with Phuc. “Japan, as an Indo-Pacific nation, will continue to contribute to the peace and stability in this region.”

    Suga said Vietnam, at the center of the region, was the most suitable destination for his first trip abroad as Japan’s leader.

    Neither of the two leaders mentioned China by name in their news conference. Phuc said the peace and stability of the South China Sea should be protected by the rule of law, not unilaterally by force or threats.

    https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-japan-southeastasia-idUKKBN2751MY
    Japan and Indonesia agreed on Tuesday to speed up talks on the export of Japanese defence gear and technology to Indonesia and to have their defence and foreign ministers meet soon, reflecting concern over China’s regional assertiveness.

    Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is on a four-day trip to Vietnam and Indonesia, his first since taking office last month, and part of Tokyo’s effort to strengthen ties with the two key countries in Southeast Asia.

    “To further advance security and defence cooperation between the two countries amid the changing regional situation, we’ve agreed to hold a meeting of foreign and defence ministers at an early date and to accelerate talks over the transfer of defence equipment and technology,” Suga said after discussions with Indonesian President Joko Widodo at Bogor palace near Jakarta.

    The Indonesian leader, widely known as Jokowi, said during a joint media appearance that a stronger partnership between Tokyo and Jakarta was vital “especially amid increasingly glaring rivalry between world’s big powers,” an apparent reference to an intensifying confrontation between United States and China.

    Suga and his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Xuan Phuc agreed in principle on a military equipment and technology export pact on Monday.

    I actually first heard about this via friends in the Philippines in Facebook, with discussion about whether they want in, too (Duterte, despite rhetoric, has been rather pro-China, and it's been one of the primary wedge issues in the country against him from what I can see as an outsider. Not that it's impacted his electoral standing at all).

    Raiju
  • Captain InertiaCaptain Inertia Registered User regular
    So Japan and Germany again against Russia/US/China, hmmmmmm

  • JusticeforPlutoJusticeforPluto Registered User regular
    You have to really eff up to get Japan on the same team as Vietnam and Indonesia.

    Also thought Japan couldnt export military goods?

  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    You have to really eff up to get Japan on the same team as Vietnam and Indonesia.

    Also thought Japan couldnt export military goods?

    No standing military. I don't think there's anything about manufacture and sale.

    MazzyxFencingsaxGiantGeek2020Skeith
  • MazzyxMazzyx Comedy Gold Registered User regular
    You have to really eff up to get Japan on the same team as Vietnam and Indonesia.

    Also thought Japan couldnt export military goods?

    Japan has been building up both places for over a decade to move industry out of China. One of the largest investors in China to build the initial infrastructure in the 80's and 90's was Japan. They have a huge quiet aid system of low interest loans (look up yen loans) that give a lot of leverage in South and South East Asia. It has been one of their key diplomatic measures for decades. Japan is a world power but just with soft and economic power and people tend to space that.

    As pointed out they can build weapons, they tend to ally with US built items for some things, but cannot have an army that can be used for force projection. They do have a standing army for self defense. To the point that a small carrier is self defense. Because that is what the ruling party interprets it as.

    In fact Japanese JSDF have flown almost more sorties verse China in the last few years than any other country.

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    JragghenFencingsaxRaijuOrca
  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    Japan is one of the countries which is basically "doesn't have nukes, but could make them on a moment's notice."

    MazzyxCaptain InertiaFencingsaxboogedybooRaiju
  • Captain InertiaCaptain Inertia Registered User regular
    Jragghen wrote: »
    Japan is one of the countries which is basically "doesn't have nukes, but could make them on a moment's notice."

    Among many other arms capabilities, including actual goddamn arms on the actual goddamn gundams

    kime
  • cckerberoscckerberos Registered User regular
    Jragghen wrote: »
    You have to really eff up to get Japan on the same team as Vietnam and Indonesia.

    Also thought Japan couldnt export military goods?

    No standing military. I don't think there's anything about manufacture and sale.

    Japan banned the export of military equipment for almost fifty years. They only started loosening the restrictions in 2014.

    Jragghen
  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    Also, the TPP without the US is actually in effect now, right?

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