US-style two-party system wins in Japan



With the ruling coalition under fire only from the general public and the JCP, "Business", as a whole, decided to go for the two-party system which has ruled the United States for the last hundred years, writes John Manning.


The Democratic Party of Japan, which has played at being an "opposition party", issued a manifesto supporting two key points, the purchase tax and revise the Constitution, and received massive media support.


The resistance vote swung to the "lesser evil", as it does in the US, and the JCP, which stood square for the Peace Constitution and a people-centred government and had to take on the US and the ' Strategic Alliance" to do it, held only its core vote of 4.5 million, losing more than half of its seats. The fact that, in the clutch, ALL business unites against any people's democracy, is still there. The JCP's vote was down two and a quarter million from 2000 and 4 million from its top of 8 million in 1998, when the LDP, which had governed alone for 40 years, lost its majority and had to ally with the fanatical religious Right, (in their case the Buddhist sect, Komei) as have the Republicans in the United States.


The owning class is resourceful and can still manoeuvre, and uses its capital, which as Marx pointed out, is dead labor used to control living labor, to control all thinking in all the ways it can.


US progressives, faced by the same strategy and preparing even now to vote for the "lesser evil", would do well to study this Japan election and the whole course of the struggle in Japan.


The JCP and its friends remain a stable force, presenting the truth and the people's interests, and, as they say in the statement below, "we are convinced that the JCP appeal throughout its campaigning corresponded with public interests and that it will play a significant role in future political processes."


The JCP in forty years has forced militarist monopolist reaction into one manoeuvre after another and, though always under attack, continues its offensive for people's sovereignty.

US progressive forces, though disunited and continually scattered and defeated, keep coming back, too.


Those "cruise missile socialists" now campaigning to destroy the US Green Party in defense of the "lesser evil", should take a longer look at history. Here below is the Japanese Communist Party's report on its election results and losses.


PRIVATE "TYPE=PICT;ALT=" JCP on general election results

The Standing Executive Committee of the Japanese Communist Party Central Committee on November 10 published a statement on the results of the November 9 House of Representatives general election. The text of the statement is as follows:

The Japanese Communist Party in the general election obtained nine seats, down from 20 in the previous election. In the proportional representation constituencies, it received 4.58 million votes (7.76 percent). Although this falls short of the 6.71 million votes (11.23 percent) the JCP received in the proportional representation constituencies in the previous general election in 2000, it managed to maintain almost the same level as the JCP in the proportional representation election in the 2001 House of Councillors election in which it received 4.33 million votes (7.91 percent).

The JCP did all it could, but the result was a regrettable setback in the number of JCP seats. We are very grateful to everyone who voted for the JCP. Our thanks also go to JCP supporters, including JCP supporters' association members, and to all JCP members for their hard work.

The general election took place as the political party alignment underwent a major change. The Liberal Democratic Party and the Democratic Party of Japan staged a "contest for political power" within the same policy framework and by sharing the same positions on two major issues that have an important bearing on the basic direction of national politics: a consumption tax increase and constitutional revision. This redrawing of the political map was suddenly produced during the run-up to the dissolution of the House of Representatives. It was in response to the business circles' call for a "two-party system" to be established on the model of the U.S. system. On October 5, after a merger (with the Liberal Party) the DPJ published a "Manifesto" proposing a consumption tax increase and a revision of the Constitution. On October 10, the day the House of Representatives was dissolved, the LDP in its election platform revealed its plan to call for a consumption tax increase.

The JCP unravelled the meaning of this sudden change in the political map produced under the guidance of business circles and large corporations, and called for a change in Japan to make the people the key players and in opposition to the two undemocratic policies: the consumption tax rate increase and constitutional revision.

However, only one month to campaign was too short for the JCP to let as many voters as possible know the truth of the matter and the JCP position.

Although the JCP had a setback in the number of its seats, we are convinced that the JCP appeal throughout its campaigning corresponded with public interests, and that it will play a significant role in future political processes.

JCP policies concerning social welfare, employment, agriculture, and Iraq are burning issues in national politics. In particular, a consumption tax increase and constitutional revision will inevitably be focal issues. In this sense, what the JCP raised during the election campaign bears great significance.

Business circles' call for a "two-party system" to be established in Japan is not effective in helping break the impasse reached by LDP politics. In paving the way for Japan's future in the 21st century in response to the wishes of the people, the JCP has an even greater role to play. The JCP is resolved to do all it can in and out of the Diet to fulfil its election promises.

After extensively listening to people inside and outside of the party, the JCP will review its election campaign at the next Central Committee Plenum to be held shortly.

In preparation for the JCP 23rd Congress to be held next January, we will elaborate the draft revision to the JCP Program while doing our utmost to build a stronger JCP. We will also do everything possible to achieve a JCP advance in the House of Councillors election next summer.