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Press translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0117, 1945-12-17.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: editorial-0390

call-number: DS801 .S82

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No. 390 Date: 17 Dec 45


ITEM 1 The Progressive Party Made a Mistake - Yomiuri-Hochi - 15 Dec 45. Translator: K. Nagatani.
Full Translation:
A ridiculous mistake found in the Election Law Reform Bill, as amended by the House of Representatives, was recently pointed out by a member of the House of Peers. Under the restricted plural system proposed in the original Government bill, one name is to be written on one ballot in electoral districts with less than five seats, two names in districts with less than ten and three names in districts with over eleven. The original draft was amended by the Progressives to enable each voter in electoral districts with less than ten members each and with over eleven to write tow and three names respectively on one ballot. However, the Progressives were too careless to notice the fact that in the case of a bi-election or a re-election where a single member from one district is to be chosen, two names are to be written on one ballot. Discovery of this mistake was made by Viscount OKOCHI, Koki at the committee meeting for the bill in the House of Peers. The upper house proceeded to make an amendment to the bill and the House of Representatives approved it.
Dr. KIYOS[illegible], Ichiro, the chairman of the committee meeting on the bill in the lower house, and SAKA, Chiaki, Vice-minister of the Home Ministry, are both experts on the Election Law. Moreover, skilled specialists in the Home Ministry participated in amending the original government bill. This top-notch staff failed to discover this absur mistake lurking in the bill. Why?
It may be surmised that the representatives were so careful on the clauses restrianing campaigns that they unwittingly overlooked this minor discrepancy. The Home Ministry, intending to submit a revised bill to the newly-elected Diet, was too absentminded to discover it. As a result of the amendments made by the lower house, clauses restraining election campaigns have become very strict, as compared with those in the original bill or in the existing Election Law. For example, no candidate is permitted to mail campaign literature, and, with the exception of placards, public announcements and newspaper advertisements, almost all campaign measures are prohibited. This, of course, may be effective in prohibiting millionaire candidates from cornering paper on the black market; but new men will be virtually prevented from campaigning.
Accordingly, the forthcoming general election promises that the Progressives, abounding in veterans, will be the leading party. This means that the Premier of the new cabinet after the general election will be the head of the Progressive Party, who has not at yet chosen.

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EDITORIAL SERIES: 117 (Continued)
ITEM 2 Drastic Solution Requested for the Starvation Problem - Yomiuri-Hochi - 15 Dec 45. Translator: S. Ota.
Full Translation:
Many people were of the opinion at the end of the war that the democratization of JAPAN should be accomplished by the people themselves. We also desired that JAPAN voluntarily change her policies in accordance with the Potsdam Declaration. However, experience has proved, from the end of the war to the present, that JAPAN has not the ability to carry through this democratization through her own initiative. She hasn't the political capacity to plan or decide, neither the outline of policies nor the individual measures for their execution, without directives from General MacARTHUR's Headquarters. Moreover, as was seen in the case of the Land Reform Bill and the Labor Union Bill, even [illegible]hen directives were given, the Government did not have the ability to take positive action to meet these directives, and the Diet hesitantly deliberated until at last the revision was demanded by Headquarters. Such is the impotence presently manifest in JAPAN. To put it differently those political elements who have remained in power are quite effectively resisting reform. Production capacities were destroyed by our defeat in the war, and almost all commodities are very scarce.
The difference between the rich and the poor will become more and more pronounced in the future because of the inflation. As has already been evidenced, some classes are able to take advantage of inflation while other classes suffer because of it. The shortage of food grows more serious, yet there is no hope for the solution of that problem at present. The cold season has come, and the temperature is sometimes below freezing; cities and towns are full of people who have no clothes, no beds, and no houses in which to live. The sons of men have no dwellings on earth, while even the flying birds have nests. The number of those suffering from malnutrition is increasing, and almost all schools have halted their studies. Moreover, those on the brink of starvation are seen waiting on the streets as though waiting for death. Thi[illegible]ves appear on the main thoroughfares of the cities, to say nothing of the neighboring towns and villages. They kill men and take their money, yet the authorities have not even the ability to seize them. Letters appealing for clothes, food, and dwellings in this cold weather are seen in every newspaper. It is not too farfetched to say that we are on the eve of a rebellion.
Yet, in the face of the facts, this impotent Government lets matters go on as they are. If it occasionally does something, it is only a temporary remedy Moreover, the members of the Diet, who pretend to be the representatives of the Nation take no positive attitude toward this problem of national starvation. The Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers issued the order "to submit to this Headquarters a detailed and inclusive plan for providing food, clothing, dwellin[illegible]s, medical facilities, financial help, and measures for promoting the welfare of unemployed and others who are needy in the period from January to June 1946." Moreover, he ordered a research organization to be established to investigate the problem of malnutrition. This is a very fair and proper order. Because this directive is so sound, the Government should be all the more ashamed of its ignorance and idleness in not providing measures for meeting this crisis.
Of late, the words "democratization of economy" have been frequently
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 117 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
used with reference to the dissolution of the financial clique, the revision of the farming system, taxation of war profits, etc. However, the democratization of economy does not refer to matters of the individual, such as the protection of small or middle scale share-holders, the sale of f[illegible]rms to farmers, or the taking of money from rich men, The idea behind "the democratization of economy" is drastically democratize economic machinery—establishing equality of opportunity, securing the livelihood of the Nation, and abolishing the system by which one group of men extorts money from another.
"The democratization of the economy" for the individual cannot be realized until the democratization of our fundamental economic machinery is effected. As to policies for preventing starvation, our incompetent Government will, like a child ordered by his parents, unwillingly adopt some superficial and temporary policy. But the Government ought to know that such a temporary remedy will eventually lead to rebellion. There is no way to dodge this unless a vigorous policy for preventing wholesale starvation is immediately carried out; this means a drastic democratization of our present economic structure.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0117, 1945-12-17.
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