Friday, October 05, 2007

I Called It the Meta-habatsu Game, Grandmaster Koizumi Says It's Factions Writ Large

Here, I characterized the bi-party jockeying for supremacy between the two, broadly similar, main contestants, with smaller groups flitting around seeking to maximize their advantages, as a game of meta-habatsu (faction). Here, Asahi shows ex-Prime Minister Koizumi going one step further, with:

"DPJ Is Counter-mainstream LDP", Prime Minister Koizumi Urges Policy Dialogue

"We were the counter-mainstream [when Ichiro Ozawa and Yukio Hatoyama belonged to the Takeshita faction], and Mr. Ozawa's group was the mainstream. … (The Machimura) faction has produced four Prime Ministers in a row and has become the mainstream. Wouldn't it be okay if we considered the DPJ as the counter-mainstream (LDP of today)?"

… Mr. Koizumi urged policy dialogue, saying, "There is an aspect of opposing though they have similar policies. We should think of them as a cooperative party when we debate policy in the Diet."

Of course this is yet another case of the soft-sell, respectful embrace that the LDP has been putting on around the Fukuda administration, and the DPJ knows better than to get on this boat made of mud.

(note) The factions aligned with the Prime Minister are called shuryu-ha=mainstream groups, while the factions that went for his opponents are called han-shuryu-ha=counter-mainstream groups. More neutral forces are considered to be hi-shuryu-ha=non-mainstream groups. These terms are fast becoming obsolete, as factional discipline withers.

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