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Press translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0358, 1946-02-04.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: editorial-1128

call-number: DS801 .S82

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No. 1128 Date: 4 Feb 46


ITEM 1 (A) Drastic Imposition of New Taxes Desired (B) Wage Boosting Drive - Asahi Shimbun - 2 Feb 46. Translator: Y. Ebiike.
Full Translation:
The property Tar Bill, The Individual property Increase Tax Bill, and The corporation war profits Tax Bill, which were explained recently, are expected to account for 100,000 million yen in revenue for the Government's fiscal expenses. These three taxes need not be set at a 100,000 million yen limit so long as they have the mission of tiding over the extreme financial difficulties and extraordinary national economic crisis. It is a good move to give a certain amount of new yen currency to all the people and confiscate all private property for the public coffers, and thus start the national economy anew. In these days when such remedies as those mentioned above are taken into consideration, the largest possible amount of taxation is desirable.
According to the gist of the draft, allowance is made in the assessment of the house holder's properties at the rote of 2,000 yen each for the head of the family and also for each of the remaining members of his family living under the same roof. But as the members of a family are liable to change in number, I think it advisable that assessment should be made on the basis of 3,000 yen per family as the basic figure and an additional 1,000 yen each for the head of the family and each other member of his family.
The exemption of 20,000 yon should be changed to 10.000 yen, or if the reduction of 2,000 yen for a family as mentioned above is raised to 10,000 yen, the exemption nay as well be dropped, supposing all the people's property put together amounts to more than 400,000 million yen, and the number of house holds is estimated at 18 million, the property of a family will be assessed at 25,000 yen on an average. Hence it is reasonable that a man who has about 20,000 yen should pay the tax. The minimum rate of 10 per cent may be apssable, but the maximum rate should be raised to 90 per cent.
The rate of corporation property tax is rather low. Judging from the draft outline, only those who possess stocks and securities will gain undue profit by the unfair protection for corporations, graduating tax rat should applied to corporations as well. That which goes by the name of Private property Increase Tex is essentially a private War Profit Tax. A uniform exemption of 10,000 yen in war profit Tax is not adequate. It is a good idea that this tax has been divided into two groups, but the exemption of the second group should be lowered to 30,000 yen, and the exemption of the first group which was fixed at 10,000 yen per family must be changed to 3,000 yen per worker. According to the draft, 9,000 yen gained by black market transactions by one member of a family belonging to Class A is not levied upon, while 3,000 yen out of 13,000 yen earned by honest work by five member of a family belonging to class B comes under taxation.

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EDITORIAL STRIES: 358 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (continued)
As for the war profits tax there [illegible] [illegible]w questions on which special emphasis must be laid. On the one hand, those properties gained obviously by taking unjust advantage of wartime economy should be levied at 100 per cont regardless of their exemption point, while on the other hand those properties, whoso increase has beyond doubt no connection whatever with the war either directly or indirectly, should be treated as belonging to the second group.
Some believe that inherited properties nay be made the object of the property Increase Tax. But if it is to be carried out, all the inheritance taxes should hereafter be levied at a uniform rate. Of course, war profits gain d by inheritance will be regarded as war profit, but it is improper to levy the War profit Tax on these profits inherited which have no connection with the war.
The draft of the bill does not clearly define "the head of a family" and "members of the family residing together." Some members live quite independently, occupying an entirely different house though officially recorded in the census register as living with the head. Such members should be regarded as independent householders. On the other hand, those who are within the same census register as the head of the family on whom they are dependent but have different addresses should be regarded as "residing together."
I cannot agree to the plan to redeem wartime national debts with the revenue from the three the taxes. Their revenue should be appropriated for the expenditures of post-war management, and thus a principle of not issuing a single sen of national bonds and of carrying on post-war management only with tax income and profit must be established and carried out. Redemption of national debts or compensation for munitional industries should be frozen for several years, end the authorities should take some deliberate counter-measures after postwar reconstruction is completed. If the Government wants to dispose of all the issues at one stroke, it should seek sufficient sources of income in new taxes. Granting that 350,000 million yen out of 400,000 million odd yen is collected on the people's property, there still remains 5,000 yen per home in the possession of the people.
I think it is most proper to levy on rough estimates in order to collect immediately, but the clause which approves four or five years of delay in payment in case of private and two years in case of corporation taxes should be abolished. If the delay in payment is recognized, then the significance and effect of the now taxation will be diminished.
Wage - Boosting Drive
Since the termination of the war, labor disputes have been reported from various peaces. Put it is about the wage-boosting issue that I entertain doubts. It is true that if the present prices are compared with current labors-ages, we see that there is good reason for the latter to be raised. Labor, when combined with raw materials, will add to the exchange value of the finished goods. Accordingly, wages are a [illegible]st important factor in determining prices, as higher wages mean higher prices, producers will most probably raise the prices of their commodities at the same time or even before they raise the wages. In these circumstances, the result will be that by the time the badly needed wage increase is at last realized, the prices will be soaring yet higher, thus pursuing the inevitable course of inflation towards the final catastrophe.
What we really want to have is equilibrium between prices and wages, and also equilibrium in the incomes earned by individuals or classes
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 358 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (continued)
throughout the whole of society. When viewed, in this light, the present prices of commodities cannot be regarded as normal from either a social or economic point of view, hence the unenviable name of "black market" prices. These outrageous prices may he traced to the disparity between goods and money but the motive power which accelerates this phenomenon lies partly in the producers who are indisposed to sell in view of more attractive black market prices, and dispose of their goods though irregular channels; and partly also in certain propertied classes who make reckless purchases, and also again in those regular black marketeers who carry on a roaring business in the shady transact ions. In this way one black market price will cause an there still higher, which in turn will invoke a third which is fa[illegible]
It is a healthy economic society that is demanded at present. Then what should the workers and the masses do? They must build sound production, set correct prices and make both distribution and consumption equitable through the capitalists or by the participation of the masses in the management. This can be aided by the formation of co-operative movements. When thus viewed we see that it is the masses that can construct a new economic society. Only when this task is completed can they claim the right to speak as the builders of a democratic JAPAN and declare a war against the profiteers and privileged classes.
ITEM 2 (I) Exposure and Distribution of Illegally Hoarded Rice (II) Reform of YASUKUNI Shrine - Mainichi Shimbun - 3 Feb 46. Translator. J. Wad
Full Translation:
With a bad after taste, we have been seriously impressed by the so-called ITABASHI Affair. At this time, the democratic council for overcoming the Food Crisis and the KANTO Council for combined Efforts against the Food shortage will begin a popular movement for the exposure of illegally hoarded rice with a new committee established for that task.
In case the necessary minimum amount of staple food is not secured, if "reliable information." to the effect that nineteen million koku of rice are being illegally held, should prove to be true, what a miserable situation that would be! If this nineteen million koku of rice, nearly half the rice crop for 1945, should be applied to general rations, the food shortage would surely be relaxed to a considerable extent. Now that the masses are on the brink of starvation, those who are fed with illegally hoarded rice are nothing less than the enemies of the people. However, The Government is too weak to carry out the exposure. The masses, on behalf of the Government, should have the bravery and boldness to expose the illegally concealed rice around them. This take is not only for their benefit but also in the interest of the people at large.
This, notwithstanding, public interest, must not be lost sight of in the distribution of the food which the people have brought to high If concealed rice in the hands of some demobilized soldiers and the ZAIBATSU is disposed of to satiate a few who have denounced them, the will bring nothing but social disorder to the masses. Therefore, who someone detects illegally boarded rice somewhere, he should inform the town or village office or the police of that fact in order to compel delivery. The task of distribution should be entrustd to the regulated agency, Justification by the people to the arbitrary disposal of concealed materials will lead to the destruction of the social order and menace the honest people. However, if the people are earnest and brave in the exposure of illegally held materials, the People will be
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 358 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (continued)
able to obtain much more rations without having to plunder. Apart from the precise figure of 19 million koku, a, great deal of information and countless rumors indicate that the amount of concealed rice is far from small.
We sincerely hope that those who committed the crime of concealment will make voluntary confessions before the beginning of the movement for exposure. They should be awakened to brotherly love. The authorities should be generous enough to purchase the concealed rice at the official price, without accusing the confessors of their past crime.
The people are apt to lose sight of a state which is misguided by false liberalism or individualism. However, we must never forget that we are Japanese, without the consciousness of being Japanese, we cannot be faithful to the duties imposed upon the Japanese nation. Of course, the first of those duties is the fulfillment of the POTSDAM Declaration. That is a very difficult task, but it is not the only task, we must exert our utmost efforts for the revival of our race and the reconstruction of the state. Our conduct must be pure and self-sacrificing for the sake of the state. It is noble and valuable in any country and at any time for one to lay down his life for the benefit of the state. It is very desirable, therefore, that the brave people who die for the reconstruction of JAPAN and other deeds of national importance in the future should be enshrined together at a, designated place to enable the nation to pay its respect and worship to then. Therein lies the significance of the existence of YASUKUNI SHRINE. The shrine has been under the jurisdic[illegible]tion of the War Ministry and only service-men or civilians in service have qualified for enshrinement. Naturally, the YASUKUNI Shrine, together with the military Museum annexed to it, have had a militaristic atmosphere. It is a matter of course that the same shrine is under reform now. However, it is unfortunate that by a turn of the wheel many old deities should be consigned to oblivity. Many of them are victims of the difficulties through which our country has gone. Even if some of the difficulties were brought about by the militarists, the victims themselves were not guilty. The enshrinement of those national victims in the past is far from meaningless.
They say that the shrine will be called by its old name instead of YASUKUNI. However, its name or the relation between the deities and Shinto is a problem of secondary imp-stance. The essential thing is that the national victims should be enshrined together through the efforts of a public group as is the case with the Tomb for the Unknown soldier, thus providing those poor victims who cannot afford a tomb at their own expense with a place where they can sleep their long sleep. For that reason the atmosphere of the vicinity must be solemn and calm. Such amusement facilities as a merry-go-round or a variety hall should never be established, although some people are suggesting this.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0358, 1946-02-04.
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