Slices of Japanese business, politics and life
I watched Japan’s election returns from the rocky Pacific, with the satellite TV reception suprisingly crisp on a ferry heading south.
A typhoon is headed towards mainland Japan and travel and other ways of life have been caught up in its headwinds, while the impact of the apparently changing political climate has only just begun.
Northern Hokkaido, once a stronghold of the Liberal Democratic Party with never-ending highway, tunnel and bridge projects as testament, deserted the long-ruling party with all but three seats going to the Democratic Party, including prime minister-elect Yukio Hatoyama.
LDP losers in Hokkaido included former foreign minister Nobutaka Machimura, head of the party’s largest faction, Tsutomu Takebe, a Koizumi Cabinet loyalist, and former finance Shoichi Nakagawa, whose family had represented the middle of the vast prefecture for almost half a century and whose struggles were chronicled last week in this blog.