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Press translations [Japan]. Political Series 0351, 1946-02-19.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: political-1404

call-number: DS801 .S85

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No. 1404 Date: 19 Feb 46


ITEM I Politicians and Morals by MIZUTANI, Chozaburo - Magazine: Shinjin (Monthly) - February 1946 issue. Translator: T. Masumura. Pfc. J. Ito.
"Politicians must live as goldfish in a glass bowl," taught a scholar of the west. How politicians make their living is questionable. There may be very few who earn their living by unimpeachable methods, which shows a definite lack of political morals in JAPAN. When we look back upon the political history of JAPAN, we see that it is filled with scandals involving compromises between elder statesmen and professional politicians, indiscreet expenditure of extraordinary war funds, etc. It is difficult to draw a line between the private life and the public life of a politician. However, we cannot respect those, as public people, whose private lives are not respectable, even though their speeches are admirable. In order to win the respect of the nation, the politician must constantly put the public above himself.
It is because of morals that ABE, Isoo, won the respect of the notion, despite his lack of fighting spirit; that KATAYAMA, Tetsu is a loader of the Social Democratic Party; and OZAKI, Gakudo, is still respected in his old age. It is the country's obligation and the nation's duty to see that these politicians, who serve our country while forgetting their homes and giving up their vocations, should live honestly.
As a result of revising the constitution, the Diet will become the center of politics. The representatives will then have to stay in TOKYO more than half of each year to study politics. We must give our representatives as good conditions as in .America where the representatives can devote themselves to their political duties without being troubled for their living. Among the representatives, there are marry who are managing enterprises, and are presidents of companies. Their living depends not on their Government salaries but on their incomes from their businesses. This fact is harmful rather than beneficial for a just observation and criticism of polities because their vocations or enterprises may have influence on t their policies. We must guarantee the living of the representatives so that they can devote themselves to politics without depending on black-market activities etc. Their present salary is so low that some American reporters were recently quite surprised upon hearing the details.
Politics is neither a pastime for the rich nor a plaything of influential people. So long as a citizen distinguishes himself, though poor, he should fee able to become a representative easily and manage his life suitably as a member of the House. For this purpose, elections should be carried out by public management, and the representatives li-ing should be guaranteed by his salary. This vail

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POLITICAL SERIES: 351 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
remove the influence of political bosses who have supported the members of their parties and have supplied them with election funds. The first step is to secure the livelihood of the representatives, thus freeing them from engaging in business, and next we must make public the expenses of the political parties.
Since the Social Democratic Party is the party which will realize socialism instead of capitalism, it must have a higher standard of morals than capitalism. From this standpoint, the Social Democratic Party must start as an idealistic party. The leftist parties must consider the fact that those who are regarded as notorious by the public are occupying key positions in the parties, and, as a result, 1 the public focuses, with suspicion, its attention on the parties themselves.
Of course, in order to carry out its policies, the party must have some funds. In our Social Democratic Party, the normal operating expenses will be met sufficiently by each member's shares, but pledges of money from the public, though net from individuals, will be gladly recieved after investigation. An honest person will be given a position as treasurer, and, thereafter, the party's accounts will be published, and, at the same time, the contributions will be disclosed.
When the affairs of both the party and the individual are disclosed, in this manner to the public, a democratic basis will have been established in the party, and the party will for the building of social democracy.
ITEM 2 Discussion on Women's Suffrage - Provincial Newspaper Kahokn Shimpo (Sendai) - 13 Feb 46. Translator: R. Ochiai.
Full Translation:
ONO: "Isn't it most effective for the average woman to be taught the rudimentary things?"
The Sponsor: "Abstention from voting is a big problem at every election in JAPAN. What is it's percentage in the UNITED STATES?"
MORRISON: "I have not noticed. I don't remember that many people abstain. Everyone thinks from his childhood that it's his duty to vote. He knows his duty and that is how a poll produces an effect on society."
ABE: "I have net enough time, and don't know for whom to vote and what party will make our life better. All these things, as you said before, trouble me.I'd like to hear how the Americans vote.
MORRISON: "Reading the candidates' statements in newspapers, they formulate their own attitude, and they vote. Of course, parents help their children to understand elections when they are old enough for suffrage."
ABE: Although we, too, see their statements in newspapers, we cannot understand them thoroughly. It is very hard to judge clearly whether they are good or not."
MORRISON: "So it is in AMERICA."
The Sponsor: "Do Americans vote for a candidate whom they think suitable although his speeches on the radio or his statements in the newspapers do not fully explain his policy?"
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POLITICAL SERIES: 351 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
ONO: "They have mere interests in politics than we, and more over, they have much more chance to understand it since meetings and conferences are quite often held in AMERICA."
MORRISON: "In order to decide whom to vote for, it is most important to know what he did before."
The Sponsor: "I think Mrs. MORRISON's talk is a good guide to the problem of Japanese women's suffrage. Now, let us turn to our common problems."
ONO: "I wish the Government to keep women at least from abstaning from voting in the coming election. The Government should establish-more polling stations. If we have them in each distribution area, we will be able to go to vote light heartedly,"
The Sponsor: "It would really be the wisest way to make a distribution office into a polling-booth to prevent abstentive. Maybe we cannot do such a thing without reforming the election law, but this would be a major problem."
UNO: "I want the Government to consider that they can vote even at midnight in AMERICA."
The Sponsor: "There is no use in women suffrage if women don't know who will increase their rations and what party will realize this plan, A wife, son, and daughter will become liberal because the husband is so . . . . . . . . . ."
ABE: "Judging from their present level of thinking, I think it will be good if we teach them about such problems with the aid of regular street meetings."
ONO: "When I m s in the UNITED STATES, I. saw in one family, that the husband, wife and their son were earnestly reading about every candidate's political opinion, criticizing it and were arguing among them-selves for a week. The wife also criticized the political opinions, pointing out the pros and cons, and knew more than her husband. And when the voting day came at last, they didn't tell each other whom they would vote for. They only commented on candidates as if they had been competitors. They said nothing at all about polling until the result of the election was announced. The husband was defeated and the wife and son won, and they laughed and laughed. I envied their natural way of polling without any effort to restrain each other's individuality."
The Sponsor: "That is to say that a father doesn't corrupt his son by giving a little more pocket-money to him. (General laughter) In a Japanese family, however, it is usually the father who leads the conversation. So, if .he talks at the table, that this party has such an opinion and that Mr. so and so says such things, it will be sure to help the family to understand about politics."
MOGI: "We have a meeting once a week. We, the nurses, express cur opinions there and the matron sometimes expresses her opinions."
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Political Series 0351, 1946-02-19.
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