Well, today, even while the LDP-New Kōmeitō were pushing Mr. Tanami’s doomed candidacy, the coalition got together and worked all day to hammer out a gasoline tax/road construction budget game plan. It culminated in Prime Minister Fukuda’s five-point plan “Our Thinking on the Road-Specific Fiscal Revenues:**
1) Pass tax bills during this fiscal year [before 1 April];
2) reexamine the road-specific revenue with a view to turning it into general-purpose revenue as part of the fundamental reform of the tax system;
3) Re-examine the mid-term road provisioning plan for including its [ten-year] term;
4) [Promote] transparency and discipline with regard to the road budget, including expenditures to public interest legal entities; and
5) Consult with the opposition parties after coordinating within the ruling [coalition].
If anything, they went beyond my “message”. But then, you can’t win ‘em all. Besides, something may have been lost in translation. But I digress. Luckily for the coalition, Naoto Kan, one of Ichirō Ozawa’s two deputies and once and (hoping to be) future king, rejected it even before it had been announced*.
As for Mr. Tanami, you need not shed a tear for him. He remains ensconced as the head of the Bank of International Cooperation (for which I have a special place in my heart, having come up with its English name when OECF and the Ex-Im Bank merged to form JBIC), after gaining some political brownie points for his momentary humiliation.
Speaking of “advice”, I have been reminded that “the [Japanese government] has followed [
FYI, Serbia recalled its ambassador to Japan in protest.
* Mr. Kan also said, “We were 99% willing to accept just about anybody.” That’s one of the faults of the DPJ leadership. They’re too honest to be really effective politicians.
** Is he finally getting the hang of it?
ADD. *** Actually, it was Robert himself that reminded me.