Saturday, October 18, 2008

Maruchi Shoho, the Business Model that Won’t Stop Giving

According to the Asahi, the Mie Prefecture Council of Social Welfare, established under the Social Welfare Activities Act, issued a warning against maruchi shoho in one of its newsletters. In response, the Distribution Business Promotion Parliamentary League aka Diet Member League to Nurture a Wholesome Network Industry (健全なネットワークビジネスを育てる議員連盟) fired off a letter in the name of DPJ Diet members Kenji Yamaoka, Yukichi Maeda and Yoshio Maki threatening the Mie Council with lawsuits if it did not retract its warning and post a public apology. The Wikipedia entry on Mr. Maki states that the Council newsletter is dated 15 October 2006 and the League ultimatum 28 February 2007. It is not known if the lawsuit was actually filed. According to the Asahi report, Mr. Yamaoka and Mr. Maki deny any knowledge of the letter, though Mr. Maki does admit that he did agree to join the League. Mr. Maeda claims that he discussed the ultimatum with the pair.

For the record, Yoshio Maki is a three-term Lower House member from the DPJ. With regard to Western-liberal hot-button issues, he appears to be south of Taro Aso and somewhere in the vicinity of Takeo Hiranuma. He also seems to have an affinity for the maruchi shoho industry. His defense background in addition to his obvious relationship with the two suggests that he could be also be an Ozawa recruit.

Today, Asahi reports that on October 2003, Mr. Ishii received 3.5 million yen from the maruchi shoho industry. According to the Asahi report, Mr. Ishii, who had jump-started the political caucus the month before, was the only one who received money that month. Asahi can’t get enough of this DPJ angle; they’re certainly doing a more thorough job than Mainichi on Mr. Ishii. In any case, the DPJ obviously failed to make a clean break when it dismissed Yukichi Takada.

… and the DPJ was supposed to be an LDP upgrade… Any more of these side stories and the DPJ won’t have any momentum left.

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