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鳩山対米外交 信頼構築へ言動が問われる

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 4, 2009)
Actions speak louder than words on U.S. ties
鳩山対米外交 信頼構築へ言動が問われる(9月4日付・読売社説)

Words alone are not enough to build a relationship of trust between Japan and the United States. Actions also will be important for crafting deeper ties.
 日米の信頼関係を築くには、「言葉」だけでなく「行動」が肝心だ。

During his telephone conversation with U.S. President Barack Obama, Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama said the Japan-U.S. security alliance remained the "foundation" of Japan's foreign policy. The two leaders also agreed that their nations would build future-oriented relations. Hatoyama echoed these comments during his meeting Thursday with new U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos.
 民主党の鳩山代表がオバマ米大統領との電話会談で「日米同盟が基軸」との意向を表明し、未来志向の関係を築くことで一致した。ジョン・ルース駐日大使との会談でも、日米関係の強化を確認した。

A call from the U.S. president and a visit by the ambassador so soon after the DPJ's landslide victory in the House of Representatives election indicates that the U.S. government attaches great importance to ties with Japan but, at the same time, is concerned about the future bilateral relationship.
 民主党の衆院選勝利後早々の大統領からの電話や大使の表敬訪問は、米政府が日本を重視すると同時に、今後の日米関係を心配しているため、と見るべきだろう。

These anxieties stemmed partly from Hatoyama's recent op-ed piece in The New York Times that caused a stir by expressing views that appeared to be critical of the United States.
 というのも、米紙に最近掲載された鳩山代表の論文が、「反米的だ」などと米側に受け止められ、波紋を広げているからだ。

===

Article invited confusion

The article, which was published in the newspaper's electronic version as a translated excerpt from an article originally carried in a monthly Japanese magazine, contained comments including, "Japan has been continually buffeted by the winds of market fundamentalism in a U.S.-led movement...Consequently, human dignity is lost," and Japan and other Asian nations "want to restrain U.S. political and economic excesses."
 論文には、「日本は米国主導の市場原理主義に翻弄(ほんろう)され続け、人間の尊厳が失われた」「米国の政治的、経済的行き過ぎは抑制したい」といった表現がある。

Hatoyama later explained that he did not intend to espouse anti-U.S. views in the article. But it is undeniable that the article included expressions critical of the United States and, as a result, gave the impression it was anti-U.S.
 鳩山代表は「反米的な考え方を示したものでない」と説明する。だが、論文が米国批判を含み、結果的に「反米的」との印象を与えた事実は否定できない。

Reaction in the United States also has been shaped by mounting distrust against DPJ policy planks such as opposition to the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling activities in the Indian Ocean and calls for reviewing the planned realignment of U.S. forces stationed in Japan.
 米側の反応の背景には、インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動への反対や、在日米軍再編の見直しなど、従来の民主党の主張に対する不信感の蓄積もあるだろう。

Hatoyama is no longer a mere opposition leader; he will soon become this nation's prime minister. He should remember that his remarks carry considerable weight.
 鳩山代表は、もはや単なる野党党首でなく、次期首相の立場だ。その発言の重みを自覚し、行動することが求められる。

He should not simply stick to underlining differences between his party and the government and ruling parties, as he did while he was an opposition member. Rather, Hatoyama should commit himself to preserving policies that deserve to be kept in place and develop them into better ones.
 野党時代のように、政府・与党との違いを強調することばかりに固執すべきではない。継承すべき政策はしっかりと継承し、むしろ発展させる発想が大切だ。

Hatoyama has a busy--and important--diplomatic schedule coming up. He is expected to hold his first summit meeting with Obama later this month around the time when a U.N. General Assembly meeting is to be held. U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates is expected to visit Japan in October, and Obama is penciled in to visit Japan in November.
 今月下旬の国連総会に合わせた初の日米首脳会談、10月にゲーツ国防長官来日、11月にオバマ大統領来日と、重要な外交日程が続く。

===

United stance needed

Initially, Hatoyama might only be obliged to pay lip service to the importance of the Japan-U.S. alliance. But words by themselves will certainly not be enough over the long term.
最初は、日米同盟の重要性を「言葉」で確認すればいいが、それだけではすまされない。

Tokyo and Washington face a raft of important issues that must be tackled together, such as the fight against terrorism, North Korea's nuclear ambitions, the realignment of U.S. forces in Japan, and reviving the staggering world economy. What role will Japan play to resolve these issues? If the DPJ intends to end the refueling mission, it must present concrete alternative measures.
 テロとの戦い、北朝鮮の核、在日米軍再編、世界経済の回復など日米が連携して取り組むべき重要課題は多い。日本は、問題解決のためにどんな役割を果たすのか。例えば給油活動を中止するなら、具体的な代案を示すべきだ。

During talks with the Social Democratic Party and the People's New Party aimed at striking a deal on forming a coalition, the DPJ proposed that pursuing a close and equal alliance with the United States be included as a policy in a consensus document among the parties. The DPJ apparently wants to make more demands of the United States than ever before.
 民主党は社民、国民新両党との連立政権協議で、「緊密で対等な日米同盟関係」を合意文書に盛り込むよう提案している。従来以上に米国に注文する狙いだろう。

However, the party should not forget that, as long as it intends to be more willing to speak its mind, it must bear due responsibilities in the international community.
 だが、物を言う以上は、当然、日本が相応の国際的な責任を担う覚悟を忘れてはなるまい。

Hatoyama's repeated verbal overtures seeking a relationship of trust with Obama will not amount to anything unless they are backed up with actions.
 鳩山代表が再三口にする「オバマ大統領との信頼関係」は、「行動」なしに実現しない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 4, 2009)
(2009年9月4日01時28分 読売新聞)

連立政権協議 現実的な安保政策が不可欠だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 3, 2009)
New coalition govt needs realistic security policy
連立政権協議 現実的な安保政策が不可欠だ(9月3日付・読売社説)

The Democratic Party of Japan, the Social Democratic Party and the People's New Party began talks Wednesday on forming a tripartite coalition government.
 民主、社民、国民新の3党が、連立政権樹立に向けた協議を始めた。

However, before forming their coalition, it is vital that they reach a consensus over policy issues, as any outstanding ambiguities will lead to serious problems in the future. All three parties must be prepared to make necessary adjustments to their respective policies.
連立政権は政策の合意が前提となる。あいまいな合意は禍根を残す。十分な政策のすり合わせが肝要だ。

The DPJ won an unprecedented 308 seats in Sunday's House of Representatives election, though it has less than a single-party majority in the House of Councillors. The DPJ is thus forging a coalition government with the SDP and the PNP in an apparent attempt to ensure policy measures are carried out in a stable manner.
 民主党は衆院で空前の308議席を獲得したが、参院では単独過半数に満たない。社民、国民新両党との連立を目指すのは、より安定した政権運営のためだろう。

In previous coalition governments, there have been a number of cases in which small parties have stuck steadfastly to their individual policies to stress the significance of their existence within the government. However, this merely caused confusion. The DPJ should learn lessons from such precedents and be wary about making easy concessions.
 ただ、過去の連立政権では、少数政党が存在意義をアピールしようと、自らの主張に固執し、混乱した例も少なくない。安易な譲歩は禁物である。

The SDP is demanding that a ruling coalition organ be established to review bills and other policies before they are approved by the Cabinet. Though this kind of body has existed in the past, it likely would cause problems this time around, as it would contradict the DPJ's policy to make its administration the sole arbiter vis-a-vis policy decisions.
 社民党は、法案などを閣議決定前に事前審査するための与党協議機関の設置を要求している。こうした機関は過去にも存在した。だが、今回、問題なのは、民主党が目指す「政策決定の政府への一元化」と矛盾することだ。

Meanwhile, it is rumored that DPJ Acting President Ichiro Ozawa likely will be given an important post within the DPJ, but not as part of the Cabinet. However, Ozawa has many supporters and wields considerable influence, and if he has a large say in policy decisions, it would lead once again to a dual system of power.
 民主党の小沢一郎代表代行は入閣せず、党の要職にとどまる方向とされる。実力者の小沢氏が党内の支持勢力を背景に、政策決定面で強い影響力を持てば、「権力の二重構造」の再現になろう。

===

Common policies

The coalition talks are based on "common policies" for six items--including a freeze on the consumption tax rate--that the three parties agreed upon prior to the lower house election.
 連立協議は、3党が衆院選前に合意した、消費税率据え置きなど6項目の「共通政策」が土台となる。

However, the real issues to be thrashed out during the talks are foreign and security policies. These topics were not included in the common policies because the parties' respective stances are so different.
焦点は、各党の立場の隔たりが大きく、共通政策に含まれなかった外交・安全保障政策だ。

For example, the DPJ believes that Maritime Self-Defense Force vessels should continue their refueling mission in the Indian Ocean until January, but the SDP is demanding an immediate pullout.
 インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動について、民主党は来年1月まで続ける考えだが、社民党は公約で即時撤退を求めた。

In addition, the DPJ approves of the MSDF's antipiracy mission in waters off Somalia, while the SDP insists the Japan Coast Guard should be running the operation.
民主党はソマリア沖での海自の海賊対処活動を容認するが、社民党は海上保安庁への切り替えを主張する。

The refueling mission represents Japan's sole contribution of personnel to international efforts against terrorism, and the nation's efforts are highly appreciated by the countries concerned. We believe it is a matter of course that this mission continue, even after January.
 給油活動は、「テロとの戦い」における日本唯一の人的支援策で関係国の評価も高い。本来、来年1月以降も継続すべきである。

Furthermore, it is unrealistic for the JCG to take the place of the MSDF in the antipiracy mission in light of differences in their respective equipment and backup systems.
 海賊対策も、装備・体制面で海保への切り替えは非現実的だ。

===

Wasted negotiations?

A more pressing concern is that both the DPJ and the SDP have policies to review the plan to relocate U.S. forces in Japan. According to the plan, the transfer of the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station in Ginowan to the shores of Camp Schwab in Nago, both in Okinawa Prefecture, would occur five years from now.
 より深刻な問題は、民主、社民両党がともに掲げる在日米軍再編の見直しだ。海兵隊普天間飛行場の沖縄県内移設は、あと5年で実現する段階にある。

If this planned transfer is canceled, 13 years of negotiations between the Japanese and U.S. governments will have been for naught, and the return of the air station site to Japan will be deferred. In addition, a plan to relocate 8,000 marines to Guam--a measure aimed at alleviating burdens on people in the prefecture--would be scrapped.
 これを白紙に戻せば、13年間の日米双方の努力が無に帰すうえ、飛行場返還は遠のく。在沖縄海兵隊8000人のグアム移転という地元負担軽減策もなくなる。

It is completely understandable that a U.S. State Department spokesman on Monday said Washington will never renegotiate the relocation plan.
 米国務省報道官が米軍再編について「再交渉しない」と言明したのは、十分理解できる。

In the world of diplomacy, it is not possible under normal circumstances for one nation's desires to be completely realized. Therefore, the DPJ should never compromise its flexibility nor reduce its options in diplomatic affairs by sticking to the various stances it adopted as the opposition when it was criticizing the government.
 外交では、通常、自国の主張が100%実現することはあり得ない。民主党は、政府批判に重点を置いた野党時代の主張にとらわれ、外交面での柔軟性と選択肢を自ら狭めるべきではあるまい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 3, 2009)
(2009年9月3日01時30分 読売新聞)

自民党再出発 後継総裁選びを急ぐべきだ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 2, 2009)
Defeat leaves LDP at political crossroads
自民党再出発 後継総裁選びを急ぐべきだ(9月2日付・読売社説)

The Liberal Democratic Party has begun to choose a new party president to succeed Prime Minister Taro Aso, who has announced he will step down as party leader to take responsibility for the LDP's crushing defeat in Sunday's House of Representatives election.
 自民党は、衆院選大敗の責任を取って辞任表明した麻生首相の後継総裁選びに入った。

Can the LDP play a role in a system in which power alternates between two major political parties? Can the LDP fulfill its role as an opposition party and keep a close eye on the administration led by Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama? The LDP still has serious responsibilities to live up to even after being relegated to the opposition benches.
 政権交代可能な2大政党政治の一翼を担っていけるか。鳩山政権に対し、しっかりチェック機能を果たせるか。野党に転落しても、自民党に課せられた責任は重大だ。

The LDP must quickly select a new party president to lead its reconstruction.
 党再建にあたっては、その先頭に立つ後継総裁の選出を急ぐ必要がある。

However, the LDP intends to put off the party presidential election until after mid-September when a special Diet session is to be called to elect the new prime minister. According to the LDP, the purpose is to listen to the opinions of the prefectural chapters and other local party organizations, and rank-and-file party members, and to reflect them in the party presidential election. But under such circumstances, LDP lawmakers will vote for the current prime minister and LDP president, Taro Aso, in the Diet session.
 ところが、自民党は、今月中旬の特別国会での首相指名選挙の後に総裁選を先送りするという。地方組織や一般党員の声を反映させるためとしているが、これでは首相指名選挙で、現総裁の麻生首相に投票することになる。

It is a little pathetic that, even as a makeshift measure, the LDP will recommend as prime minster the party president who will step down from the post after voters said "no" to him in the general election.
 一時しのぎとは言え、有権者に「ノー」を突きつけられて退陣する党首を首相に推挙するというのは、余りにお粗末ではないか。

===

Antipathy toward Aso

Several LDP lawmakers oppose the postponement of the party presidential election, asserting that they would rather cast a blank ballot than have to write "Aso" in the Diet's vote on the prime minister. If the party falls into confusion, it could lead to a party split. The LDP should take the current situation seriously.
 党内でも、総裁選先送りに反発して、「『麻生』と書くぐらいなら白紙投票」と主張する議員が少なくない。混乱すれば党分裂の危機につながりかねない。状況を深刻に受け止めるべきだ。

It is important to listen to the voices of members of local party chapters and other related organizations, but does the LDP have a month to spare to reflect these opinions in the party presidential election?
 地方党員、組織の声に耳を傾けるのは重要だ。しかし、地方の意見を後継総裁選びに反映させるのに、1か月近くかける余裕が、今の自民党にあるのだろうか。

It took only about 10 days to choose a new party president when changing from former Prime Minister Kiichi Miyazawa to Yohei Kono, and from former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to former Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda. It is time for the LDP to select a new party president as soon as possible and prepare to face the Hatoyama administration.
 過去の例をみても、宮沢首相から河野総裁、安倍首相から福田首相と、10日前後で後継を選出している。1日も早く麻生首相に代わる旗頭を立て、鳩山政権に立ち向かう体制を整える時だ。

Of course, when doing so, it is natural that the LDP should seek input from party chapters and members across the country and reflect those opinions in the efforts to reconstruct the party.
 無論、その際は、地方の意向を十分に反映させるのは当然だ。

===

Party on the brink

The LDP faces the greatest crisis since its foundation. Whether a leader who can clearly display his intentions and vision for party reconstruction will emerge is of paramount importance. Politicians who are always keeping an eye on the movements of party factions are not qualified to lead.
 自民党は今、結党以来最大の危機にある。肝心なのは、党再建の意志とビジョンを明確に示すリーダーが現れるかどうかだ。派閥の動向を様子見するようでは、リーダーの資格はない。

To rebuild the party, it is indispensable to thoroughly review the reasons for its crushing defeat in the general election.
 再出発には、惨敗の原因を徹底して洗い出すことが必須だ。

Although the direction of the party's fundamental principles and policies is not basically wrong, the market fundamentalism and excessive structural changes under the administration of former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi have invited the expansion of the income gap and economically exhausted provincial areas. It also is necessary to review the "theatrical politics," or sensationalist political approach seen under the Koizumi administration.
 党の理念や政策の方向性は基本的に間違ってはいないが、小泉政権時代の市場原理主義や行き過ぎた構造改革が、格差の拡大や地方の疲弊を招いた。「小泉劇場型政治」の総括も必要だろう。

Some observers point out that the LDP has never been an organized political party because support groups for individual party lawmakers virtually act as party chapters. In addition, the LDP election campaign strategy, which has more and more come to rely on coalition partner New Komeito and Soka Gakkai, a lay Buddhist organization that is New Komeito's main supporter, has weakened the foundations of the LDP's original support bases.
 個人後援会を政党支部に衣替えしただけで、いまだに組織政党の体をなしていない、という指摘もある。公明党・創価学会に頼った選挙運動も、本来の支持基盤の足腰を弱めた。

The public will be watching closely to see whether the LDP can make a strong comeback and regain control of the government. If the party remains stupefied for long, the reputation of the LDP, which had long been a ruling party, will be ruined.
 自民党が、政権奪還に向かって力強く再起できるかどうか、国民は注視している。いつまでも茫然(ぼうぜん)自失しているようでは、これまでの「政権党」の看板が泣く。

(From the Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 2, 2009)
(2009年9月2日01時41分 読売新聞)

政権移行始動 基本政策は継続性が重要だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Sep. 1, 2009)
Continuity important for basic policies
政権移行始動 基本政策は継続性が重要だ(9月1日付・読売社説)

Democratic Party of Japan President Yukio Hatoyama has begun the process of launching a new administration. It is important for Hatoyama, first and foremost, to divide the policies pledged in the DPJ's manifesto into those that should be implemented immediately and those that the party should take time to fine-tune.
 民主党の鳩山代表が、新政権発足に向けて動き出した。

 鳩山代表はまず、衆院選の政権公約のうち、直ちに実施すべき政策と、時間をかけて練り直すべき政策とを整理することが肝要だ。

The DPJ has said that a new "national strategy bureau" that it will establish under the direct control of the prime minister will serve as a control tower for the government's budget compilation and foreign policy.
 民主党は、首相直属機関として新設する「国家戦略局」に、予算編成や外交政策などの司令塔の役割を与えるとしている。

The central government ministries and agencies have submitted their respective budgetary requests for fiscal 2010 ahead of Monday's deadline. The DPJ, however, plans to review the budgetary request guidelines, which were approved by the Cabinet on July 1.
 来年度予算の概算要求は8月31日に締め切られ、各省庁が要求を提出した。だが、民主党は、7月1日に閣議了解された概算要求基準を見直す方針だ。

 ◆補正組み替えは慎重に◆
A total of 7.1 trillion yen will be needed in the next fiscal year to fund the child benefit program and other policies that the DPJ pledged in its manifesto. Although the DPJ has promised that an "administrative reform council," another new government body the DPJ plans to establish, will eliminate wasteful spending, can the necessary funds be squeezed out merely through belt-tightening measures?
 民主党が公約した子ども手当などの施策で、来年度に要する財源は7・1兆円だ。同じく新設される「行政刷新会議」で予算の無駄を排除していくというが、それだけで財源を捻出(ねんしゅつ)できるのか。

The DPJ also is studying making savings by cutting some expenditures in the fiscal 2009 supplementary budget and appropriating the saved funds for the fiscal 2010 budget. But the party should deal carefully with the review of the supplementary budget, which is supporting the nation's economy.
 民主党は、今年度補正予算を組み替えることで財源を浮かせ、来年度予算に充当することも検討中だ。だが、景気を下支えしている補正予算の見直しは、慎重に対応しなければならない。

Since the establishment of the national strategy bureau requires a revision of a related law, Hatoyama plans to first create a strategy office, which can be set up under a new government ordinance, and have it present the outline of the fiscal 2010 budget. Wasting time in creating the new organization, however, will end up delaying budget compilation.
 鳩山代表は、法改正が伴う国家戦略局新設の前に、政令などで設置できる「戦略室」で、来年度予算の大枠を示そうとしているが、組織作りに手間取ると、予算編成作業に遅れが出てしまう。

Hatoyama should take to heart the importance of implementing economic measures speedily.
 景気対策はスピードが大事なことを肝に銘じてほしい。

After being appointed prime minister at a special Diet session that is scheduled to be convened in the middle of this month, Hatoyama plans to visit the United States, where he will undertake summit diplomacy.
 鳩山代表は、今月中旬召集の特別国会で首相指名を受けた後、訪米し、首脳外交を展開する。

Hatoyama is scheduled to attend summit-level meetings on climate change and nuclear nonproliferation at the United Nations in New York and address the U.N. General Assembly. He also is scheduled to attend the Group of 20 financial summit meeting in Pittsburgh.
 国連で開かれる気候変動や核不拡散の首脳級会合に出席し、国連総会で演説する。金融サミット(G20)にも出席する予定だ。

===

Emissions pledge unrealistic
 ◆「25%公約」は避けよ◆

Observers, however, have already voiced concerns about how Hatoyama will handle a midterm target for reducing Japan's emissions of carbon dioxide and other global warming gases by the end of 2020.
 この首脳外交で早くも懸念されているのが、2020年までに二酸化炭素など温室効果ガスの排出量をどれだけ減らすかという中期目標の扱いだ。

The DPJ has proposed that the emissions of such gases be reduced by 25 percent from the 1990 levels.
 民主党は公約で、「1990年比で25%減」を掲げている。

If Hatoyama, as prime minister, repeats the DPJ's pledge at the General Assembly meeting or any other key international meetings, it is possible that Japan will be required to meet this numerical target under a successor treaty to the 2008-12 Kyoto Protocol being negotiated for conclusion by the end of December.
 鳩山代表が首相として、この数値目標を国連総会などで表明すれば、12月に交渉期限を迎える「ポスト京都議定書」では、最低でもこの削減目標が日本に割り当てられる可能性が高い。

The goal of reducing gas emissions by 25 percent from the 1990 levels will not be attainable merely with halfhearted energy-saving efforts. It requires innovative technological development. But there are limits to what Japan can achieve.
 「90年比25%減」は、生半可な省エネ努力だけで達成できる数値ではない。革新的な技術開発が必要だが、限界があろう。

Emissions cuts have economic side effects, such as downward pressure on gross domestic product, and damaging people's livelihoods.
排出削減には、国内総生産(GDP)の押し下げなど経済への副作用と国民生活への痛みも伴う。

The DPJ should take this power transfer as an opportunity to review the midterm target from a pragmatic perspective. At least, it should avoid the foolish act of constraining itself by presenting such a high target as an international pledge.
 民主党はこの際、現実的な視点で中期目標を見直すことが必要である。少なくとも、これを国際公約にして、自縄自縛に陥る愚は避けるべきだ。

Hatoyama has stated that a DPJ-led administration will need to respect the need for continuity in diplomatic and security policies, to a certain extent.
 鳩山代表は、「外交・安保の継続性もそれなりに認める必要がある」と述べている。

続きを読む

民主党政権実現 変化への期待と重責に応えよ (2/1)

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Aug. 31, 2009)
DPJ must be responsible, live up to expectations
民主党政権実現 変化への期待と重責に応えよ(8月31日付・読売社説)

People's dissatisfaction with the Liberal Democratic Party's politics and their expectation that a new administration led by the Democratic Party of Japan can bring "change" has ushered in a historic change in power in this country.
 自民党政治に対する不満と、民主党政権誕生による「変化」への期待が歴史的な政権交代をもたらした。

 The DPJ romped to a landslide victory in the House of Representatives election Sunday, handing the LDP its most devastating defeat since the party was formed.
 30日投開票の衆院選で民主党が大勝し、自民党は結党以来の惨敗を喫した。

This is the first time since the end of World War II that an opposition party has won a single-party majority in the lower house and brought about a change in administration.
 野党が衆院選で単独過半数を獲得し、政権交代を果たしたのは戦後初めてのことである。

DPJ President Yukio Hatoyama, who is expected to be named prime minister in the special Diet session to be convened soon, will bear the heavy responsibility of managing the country.
 近く召集される予定の特別国会で、首相に指名される民主党の鳩山代表が、国家経営の重責を担うことになる。

===

Disappointment and weariness

 ◆自民党への失望と飽き◆
The largest cause of this sea change in public sentiment lies in the LDP itself.
 このような民意の大変動の要因は、自民党にある。

Policies taken by the administration of Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, which espoused the importance of market principles, widened disparities in society, devastated the country's medical and nursing care services and impoverished many rural areas.
 小泉内閣の市場原理主義的な政策は、「格差社会」を助長し、医療・介護現場の荒廃や地方の疲弊を招いた。

Koizumi's successors--Shinzo Abe and Yasuo Fukuda--abruptly resigned as prime minister.
 小泉後継の安倍、福田両首相は相次いで政権を投げ出した。

Prime Minister Taro Aso, who took over from Fukuda, suffered a string of self-imposed setbacks with verbal gaffes and other blunders that raised questions about his ability to serve as prime minister before he could correct the policy line taken by the Koizumi administration.
 麻生首相は、小泉路線の修正も中途半端なまま、首相としての資質を問われる言動を続けて、失点を重ねた。

The LDP lost its status as the largest party in the House of Councillors after a thumping defeat in the 2007 election. Subsequently, the LDP's support organizations and industrial groups that traditionally supported the party began to increasingly distance themselves from the LDP.
 この間、自民党は、参院選敗北によって参院第1党の座を失い、従来の支持・業界団体も、自民離れを加速させた。

In short, it can be said that the LDP's historic defeat was brought about by the collapse of its structural reforms that went too far, its leaders' failure to live up to their responsibilities and their lack of leadership ability, the alienation of its traditional support base, and weariness and disappointment with the administration that had been in power for a long time.
 構造改革路線の行き過ぎ、指導者の責任放棄と力量不足、支持団体の離反、長期政権への失望と飽きが、自民党の歴史的敗北につながったと言えよう。

In addition to criticizing the LDP's failings, the DPJ wooed discontented voters by putting forward policies including support for households, such as a monthly child allowance for families and a gradual phasing out of highway tolls, as well as adopting election campaign tactics that included fielding a diverse range of candidates.
 民主党は、こうした自民党の行き詰まりを批判し、子ども手当や高速道路無料化など家計支援策、多様な候補者を立てる選挙戦術で有権者の不満を吸い上げた。

In the previous lower house election, the LDP was blessed with strong and favorable winds whipped up by the postal service privatization debate and the divisions wrought by the party's decision to put "assassin" candidates on the official party ticket to run against those LDP members who opposed the Koizumi-led postal reform drive and were forced off the party ticket.
 小泉政権下の前回衆院選では、「郵政民営化」と刺客騒動で、自民党に強い追い風が吹いた。

The winds of change then took a sudden turn, swinging behind the DPJ, which advocates a change in power--and the favorable conditions have remained since the dissolution of the lower house, culminating in heavy damage to the LDP's junior coalition partner, New Komeito, too.
 今回、風向きは一転、「政権交代」を唱えた民主党側に変わり、圧勝への勢いを与えた。この結果、自民党だけでなく、連立与党の公明党も大きな打撃を受けた。

This development should be interpreted as meaning that the overwhelming sentiment among voters was to give the DPJ a chance to hold the reins of power, despite anxiety in the electorate about how a DPJ-led administration might fare.
 民主党政権に「不安」は感じつつも、一度は政権交代を、との有権者の意識が、それだけ根強かったと見るべきだろう。

Despite the DPJ's landslide victory, however, it does not mean voters have given the party an open-ended mandate.
 しかし、300議席を超す勝利は、必ずしも、民主党への白紙委任を意味するものではない。

===

民主党政権実現 変化への期待と重責に応えよ (2/2)

Review election pledges
 ◆政権公約の見直しを◆

A new cabinet to be formed by Hatoyama is to carry out policy measures based on the schedule presented in the DPJ's election manifesto. However, the new government should not stick to its "election" pledges so much so as to destabilize people's lives.
 鳩山新内閣は、政権公約(マニフェスト)で示した工程表に従って、政策を進めることになる。だが、“選挙用”政権公約にこだわるあまり、国民生活を不安定にさせてはならない。

Its most important task is to put the Japanese economy, which is now in the process of recovering from a serious recession, on a steady road to recovery. Given the deteriorating employment situation, public spending on economic pump-priming measures must be continued seamlessly.
 最大の課題は、大不況から立ち直りかけている日本経済を着実な回復軌道に乗せることだ。雇用情勢の悪化を考えれば、切れ目のない景気対策が欠かせない。

When drafting the next fiscal year's budget, the new administration needs to give top priority to boosting the economy.
 来年度予算編成でも、景気浮揚に最大限の配慮が必要だ。

In the realm of foreign and security policy, the change of government will not be accepted as an excuse to tear up international agreements. The new government must seek to achieve consistency in this country's foreign policy and firmly maintain the Japan-U.S. alliance.
 外交・安全保障では、政権交代によって、国際公約を反故(ほご)にすることは許されない。外交の継続性に留意し、日米同盟を堅持しなければならない。

Since it does not have a single-party majority in the upper house, the DPJ will start talks soon with the Social Democratic Party and the People's New Party about the formation of a coalition government.
 民主党は、参院では単独過半数を持たないことから、社民、国民新両党と連立政権協議に入る。

One major concern is the huge gap between the DPJ and the SDP regarding their basic policies on foreign and security affairs, including the participation of the Self-Defense Forces in international peacekeeping activities.
 懸念されるのは、自衛隊の国際平和協力活動など、外交・安保の基本にかかわる政策をめぐって、民主、社民両党間に大きな隔たりがあることだ。

A political situation in which a small party can use its casting vote to push around a major party would be extremely harmful. The DPJ should approach the talks determined to scrap plans for a coalition with the SDP if they cannot reach an agreement on fundamental policies.
 少数党が多数党を振り回すキャスチングボート政治は、弊害が大きい。民主党は、基本政策で合意できなければ、連立を白紙に戻すこともあり得るとの強い決意で、協議に臨むべきだろう。

The DPJ has set a goal of "bidding farewell to bureaucrat-led policy-making."
 民主党は、「官僚政治からの脱却」も目標に掲げている。

But the DPJ should not be under the illusion that bureaucrats will dance to the party's tune simply by establishing a politician-led "National Strategy Bureau" or by assigning a bevy of lawmakers to positions within each government agency or ministry.
だが、首相直属の「国家戦略局」を設けたり、多数の国会議員を各府省に配置しさえすれば、官僚を動かせるというものではない。

Lawmakers will be scrutinized for their ability to use bureaucrats to serve their purposes, rather than to act hostilely against bureaucrats. Lawmakers should know that only when they win the trust of bureaucrats will they be able to effectively implement policies.
 官僚と敵対するのではなく、使いこなす力量が問われる。官僚の信頼を得て初めて、政策の遂行が可能になることを知るべきだ。

===

Can LDP make comeback?

The LDP was formed in 1955 through a marriage of conservative parties to counter the Japan Socialist Party, which in that year merged the rightist and leftist socialist parties.
 自民党は1955年、左右の社会党の統一に対抗する保守合同によって誕生した。

The ideological clash between the LDP and JSP that was dominant in those days has since evaporated, and the JSP the nation knew then no longer exists. The LDP's crushing defeat in Sunday's election completed the demise of the so-called 1955 political system that centered around the LDP and the socialists.
 当時のイデオロギー対決はすでになく、かつての社会党も存在しない。今回の自民党の壊滅的な敗北は、自社主軸の「55年体制」の完全な終幕を告げるものだ。

 ◆自民党は立ち直れるか◆
The LDP must brace itself for an extended period in the opposition camp. The party will need to dust itself off and rebuild itself almost from scratch if it wants to be a viable political party that can occupy the position of one of the two major political parties--together with the DPJ.
 自民党は、これから野党時代が長くなることを覚悟しなければなるまい。民主党とともに2大政党制の一角を占め続けるには、解党的出直しが必要だ。

The LDP was temporarily ousted from power in 1993 in the wake of money-for-favor political scandals. Since then, it has remained at the helm of the government by forming coalitions with the JSP, Komeito and other parties.
 93年、自民党は金権腐敗から一時期政権を退いた。その後、社会党や公明党などとの連立で政権を維持してきた。

The LDP has been forced by the voters to start over--after having neglected to reform itself.
 しかし、自己改革を怠り、結局、有権者の手によって、再出発を余儀なくされた。

The party will be pressed to drastically change everything from its political philosophy to its policies and its structure under a new party leader who will replace Aso ahead of the upper house election next summer.
 今後は、麻生首相に代わる新総裁の下、来年夏の参院選に向け、党の組織や政策、選挙体制など、すべての面にわたり徹底的な改革が迫られる。

The LDP must present healthy, sound policies and bolster its ability to counter the DPJ-led administration if it wants to be a key player that can level criticism at the government.
 説得力のある政策を示し、民主党政権に対する批判勢力として、闘争力を高めねばならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Aug. 31, 2009)
(2009年8月31日05時28分 読売新聞)

衆院選:民主単独で300議席超へ 鳩山政権誕生が確実に

歴史的な政権交代となりましたね。
消費税は4年間据え置き。
どうやって社会保障財源を確保するのか心配です。
しかしながら民主党の政権をとることが決まった以上、
我々も覚悟を決めて、民主新日本丸に乗船しなければなりません。
期待と不安が交じり合った複雑な心境です。
(スラチャイ)

(Mainichi Japan) August 30, 2009
Opposition Democratic Party of Japan set to win election in landslide
衆院選:民主単独で300議席超へ 鳩山政権誕生が確実に

The largest opposition Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) is set to score a landslide victory in Sunday's general election, likely capturing more than 300 of the 480 seats in the House of Representatives, according to Mainichi Shimbun exit polls.

The DPJ is certain to take over the reins of government, putting an end to the 10-year-old coalition government comprised of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and Komeito (NKP).

DPJ leader Yukio Hatoyama will be elected prime minister at a special Diet session that must be called within 30 days after the polling day under the Constitution, and form a Cabinet.

The LDP is expected to suffer a humiliating defeat, possibly falling short of 100 seats.

The focal point of Sunday's general election has been whether the DPJ will take over the reins of government or the LDP-NKP coalition will stay in power.

Vote counting began immediately after almost all of about 51,000 polling stations across the country closed at 8 p.m.

As of 10:40 p.m., the DPJ had won 243 seats, the LDP 62, NKP 11, the Japanese Communist Party (JCP) five, the Social Democratic Party (SDP) two, the People's New Party (PNP) two, the Your Party (YP) three and the New Party Nippon (NPN) one, while the Japan Renaissance Party (JRP) had won no seats. Four independents have also been elected to the chamber.

All winners in the nation's 300 single-seat constituencies (SSC) will be announced by about 1 a.m. on Monday and all those elected in the proportional representation blocs (PRB) will be determined by around 3 a.m.

The voter turnout was 53 percent as of 7:30 p.m., down 2.65 points from the previous election in 2005. However, as the number of those who cast absentee ballots was more than 50 percent more than the previous election, final voter turnout is expected to be above that in the previous election, which stood at 67.51 percent.

A confidence vote among the public for nine Supreme Court justices, who were appointed after the previous Lower House election, was also held simultaneously with the general election.

日本語の速報↓

 第45回衆院選は30日投票され、同日午後8時、投票が締め切られた。即日開票され、31日未明には新たな480議席が確定する見通し。毎日新聞が全国300小選挙区の投票所で実施した出口調査によると、民主党が圧倒的に優勢で、比例代表と合わせ単独で過半数(241議席)を大きく上回り、300議席を超える可能性が高い。民主党が結党後初の政権交代を果たし、鳩山由紀夫代表を首相とする鳩山政権が誕生するのは確実になった。

 自民党は公示前の300議席から大幅に議席を減らす惨敗で、100議席を割る可能性もある。自民、公明両党の連立政権は10年で終止符を打つことになった。

 午後7時半現在の投票率は53.00%(男性53.54%、女性52.48%)で、前回05年衆院選の同時刻より2.65ポイント低い。一方、29日に締め切った期日前投票は1398万4968人(全有権者数の13.40%)と前回の1.56倍で、過去3回の国政選挙で最も多かった約1080万人(07年参院選)を超え、過去最多となった。最終的な投票率は前回の67.51%(小選挙区)を上回りそうだ。

毎日新聞 2009年8月30日 21時02分(最終更新 8月30日 22時08分)

きょう投票 1票が日本の進路を決める

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Aug. 30, 2009)
An election that will chart Japan's future course
きょう投票 1票が日本の進路を決める(8月30日付・読売社説)

Which political party and which candidates should be entrusted to take the helm of this nation?
Today, Aug. 30, is the polling day for the 45th House of Representatives election. It is an election that will determine Japan's future path.
 日本の舵(かじ)取りを委ねるのにふさわしい政党はどこか、候補者は誰か。有権者の1票が日本の進路を左右する。
 きょう30日、第45回衆院選が投票日を迎えた。

Voters must choose whether to continue under the current administration of the Liberal Democratic Party and its coalition partner New Komeito, or to switch to a new administration centered on the Democratic Party of Japan.
 自民、公明両党の現政権の継続か、民主党を基軸とする新政権の誕生か。

The election campaign has focused not only on a straight evaluation of the accomplishments and policies of each party. Voters also have had to weigh up which party most deserves to govern.
今回の選挙戦では、各政党の実績、政策の評価に加えて、選挙後の政権の選択が大きな焦点となった。

The LDP had to fight the election campaign in the face of a strong voter backlash.
 自民党にとっては、強い逆風の下の選挙戦だった。

After an overwhelming victory in the lower house election in 2005 under the administration of then Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, the premiership changed hands three times, passing to Shinzo Abe, Yasuo Fukuda and then Taro Aso. The party was subject to persistent criticism for passing the reins of government from one party head to another.
 小泉政権下の前回衆院選での圧勝の後、安倍、福田、麻生と首相が3度も交代し、「政権たらい回し」の批判は根強かった。

Since taking power in September, Prime Minister Taro Aso showed himself to be inconsistent and indecisive at a number of crucial moments, such as when he failed to explain what the flat-sum cash benefit program was meant to achieve. Each time he floundered, he pushed down the LDP's approval rating.
 麻生首相も、昨年9月の政権発足以来、定額給付金の性格付けを始めとして、節目で発言のぶれや優柔不断さを露呈し、そのたびに自民党の支持率を押し下げた。

For the DPJ, doubts have been raised over its ability to govern due to its composition--a motley collection of politicians from different parties ranging from conservatives on one side of the political spectrum to former members of the now-defunct Japan Socialist Party on the other.
In addition, some observers have expressed caution over the party's desire to form a coalition with the Social Democratic Party, which has very different national security policies from the DPJ.
 民主党に対しても、保守系から旧社会党出身までを党内に抱えた「寄り合い所帯」に起因する統治能力への疑問や、安全保障政策で開きのある社民党との連立を志向することへの不安などが、指摘された。

===

Vote on policies, not feelings

Some observers have said that the vote likely will reflect dissatisfaction with the LDP or anxiety over the DPJ, rather than voters' active decision to continue with an administration formed of the LDP-Komeito coalition or move to one centered on the DPJ.
 有権者にとっては、自公政権か民主基軸政権かの積極的な選択というより、「自民党への不満か、民主党への不安か」の消極的な選択でしかない選挙だという指摘もある。

However, the results of the lower house election will have a direct bearing on this nation's future.
It cannot be correct to decide which party and politician to choose simply on the basis of one's discontent, anxiety or a fleeting emotion.
 しかし、衆院選の結果は、これからの日本の進路に直結する。不満であるとか、不安であるとかいった気分や、一時のムードで、決めていいはずがあるまい。

Policies must, first and foremost, be the key criteria for deciding who to vote for.
 有権者が投票の第一の判断基準とすべきは、やはり政策だ。

 ◆政策を冷静に見極めよ◆
Each party conducted its campaign by first drawing up a platform covering the policies each would implement during the four-year House of Representatives term.
 各政党とも、衆院議員の任期である4年間に実施する政策を網羅した政権公約(マニフェスト)を掲げて選挙に臨んだ。

Policies on pensions, health care, child-rearing and education, which are of great interest to voters in this nation that is rapidly aging and has a very low birthrate, as well as funding for those policies, surfaced as major issues in the election campaign.
 中でも、少子高齢化が進む中で、有権者の関心が高い年金・医療、子育て・教育などの政策や、その財源の手当てが、主要な争点に浮上した。

The LDP stressed it would introduce drastic reforms of the taxation system, including an increase of the consumption tax rate, to provide stable financing for the social security system. The LDP did not clarify when it would raise the consumption tax, saying only that it would occur after the nation achieved 2 percent year-on-year economic growth.
 自民党は、社会保障の安定財源として、消費税率引き上げを含む税制抜本改革に取り組むと強調した。引き上げの時期は、年率2%の経済成長が達成されてからとしたが、明示は避けた。

The DPJ listed many schemes that would provide direct payment of benefits to households as a way of boosting spending, such as child-rearing allowances. It said it would fund the measures by cutting spending in other areas, for example suspending nonessential projects. The party said it would not raise the consumption tax rate before the next lower house election.
 民主党は、「子ども手当」など多くの直接給付型の家計支援策を掲げた。財源は、不要不急な事業の中止など徹底した歳出削減で捻出(ねんしゅつ)し、消費税率は次の衆院選まで据え置くとした。

===

Leadership important

Differences among the two key parties in the fields of diplomacy and national security are conspicuous, such as whether to press on with the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean.
 インド洋における海上自衛隊の給油活動を継続するか否かなど、外交・安全保障政策でも各党の主張の違いは顕著だ。

It is important to calmly assess the persuasiveness of each party's policies. We hope voters will thoroughly examine each party's stance.
 どの主張に説得力があるか、冷静に見極めることが大事だ。有権者には、各党の政策を十分に吟味してもらいたい。

雇用と物価 デフレに至る悪循環を防げ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Aug. 29, 2009)
Deflationary pressures must be nipped in bud
雇用と物価 デフレに至る悪循環を防げ(8月29日付・読売社説)

Utmost caution must be exercised to prevent falling prices and the worsening employment situation from allowing deflation to take a vicelike grip on the nation's economy.
 物価下落と雇用情勢の悪化が、深刻なデフレを招かぬよう、細心の注意が必要だろう。

The nation's key consumer price index in July fell 2.2 percent from a year earlier, marking the first fall in the 2 percent range in the postwar period.
 7月の全国消費者物価指数が、前年同月比2・2%下がり、下落率は戦後初めて2%台をつけた。

Meanwhile, the unemployment rate in July climbed to a postwar high of 5.7 percent, up 0.3 percentage point from the previous month.
 一方、7月の完全失業率は前月より0・3ポイント悪化して5・7%となり、戦後最悪を更新した。

The worsening employment situation is eroding workers' incomes. Tightening the purse strings at home leads to sluggish sales of products and, in turn, to falling prices. As companies struggle with falling sales, they resort to restructuring and other measures to cut costs, exacerbating the grim employment situation. The latest government figures on prices and employment show that a vicious cycle of deflationary pressures is becoming increasingly real.
 雇用の悪化で労働者の収入が減ると、物が売れなくなって価格が下がる。このため企業の売り上げが減り、リストラなどで雇用はさらに厳しくなる。物価と雇用の統計は、デフレの悪循環が現実味を増してきたことを示している。

Whichever party takes power after Sunday's House of Representatives election, the new administration must do everything it can to arrest these deflationary pressures and boost the economy.
 衆院選後の政権がどうあれ、デフレ阻止と景気浮揚に全力を挙げねばならない。

The sharp price falls are due mainly to the drop in oil prices that soared last year. Gasoline prices fell as much as 30 percent from last year, lowering overall prices about 1 percent.
 物価の大幅下落は、前年に高騰した原油の値下がりが主因だ。ガソリン価格は30%も下がり、物価全体を約1%押し下げた。

But prices, excluding those of energy-related products, fell 0.9 percent. The rate of fall was about the same as that in fiscal 2001 during a serious deflationary period.
 だが、エネルギー関連を除いた物価も0・9%下がり、下落率は深刻なデフレ期の2001年度とほぼ同水準だ。

===

Domestic demand weak

The current deflationary trend should not be waved off as a temporary phenomenon caused by the correction in oil prices after they skyrocketed last year. Rather, weak domestic demand should be considered the major cause of falling prices.
現在のデフレ傾向を、原油高の反動による一時的な現象だと軽視してはなるまい。
 物価下落の核心は、内需の不足にあると見るべきだ。

The nation's real gross domestic product for the April-June period returned to positive growth for the first time in five quarters. However, the improvement was mainly attributed to a recovery in exports and policy initiatives under the government's stimulus package that, for example, increased sales of energy-saving home appliances. Worryingly, overall domestic demand remains weak.
 4~6月期の実質国内総生産(GDP)は、5四半期ぶりにプラス成長に転じた。だが、輸出回復と、経済対策による省エネ家電の販売増加など政策効果が中心で、内需全体の足腰は弱い。

Boosting consumption is critical for a full economic recovery. However, sales at department stores and supermarkets have been lethargic for a prolonged period, and sales at convenience stores, which had been brisk, registered a record plunge in July.
 本格回復のカギを握る消費は、百貨店とスーパーの販売不振が長期化し、好調だったコンビニの売上高も、7月には過去最大の下げを記録した。

Consumers are cutting back spending on foods and other daily necessities. Both the number of shoppers and the amount each shopper spent at convenience stores decreased last month.
 消費者は、食品や日用品など必需品への支出を切りつめ、コンビニでは来客数と1人あたりの購入額が、ともに減った。

===

BOJ has role to play

Fierce price wars might be good news for consumers, but excessive discounting would add to a deflationary spiral, in which the economy heads south while prices fall.
 安売り競争も激しい。消費者にはうれしいことだが、行き過ぎれば物価と景気が連鎖的に落ち込むデフレスパイラルにつながる。

For the time being, we think it is necessary to bolster domestic demand through economic pump-priming and employment support measures.
 当面は、景気・雇用対策で内需を支える必要がある。

The Democratic Party of Japan has indicated it will overhaul the supplementary budget compiled for boosting the economy if it takes power. We agree that it is important to eliminate wasteful spending, but austerity measures such as drastic cuts in spending on public works projects should be avoided.
民主党は、景気対策のための補正予算を組み直すという。無駄の見直しは大切だが、公共事業の大幅カットなど緊縮策は避けねばならない。

The Bank of Japan's monetary policy has a crucial role to play. Although the central bank has kept its key interest rate near zero, real interest rates will rise if prices fall. This would sap the impact of the bank's low interest rate policy.
 日銀の金融政策も重要だ。政策金利はゼロ%に近い低さだが、物価下落率の分だけ、実質金利は上昇する。低金利政策の効果はかなり減殺されていよう。

If the deflationary trend gets stronger, the central bank should consider taking additional measures, such as increased purchases of long-term government bonds and the introduction of a quantitative easing policy setting a target for the outstanding balance of current account deposits held by private financial institutions at the central bank.
 デフレ傾向が強まるようなら、長期国債の買い入れ増額や、日銀当座預金残高を目標とした量的金融緩和策の導入など、追加策を検討すべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Aug. 29, 2009)
(2009年8月29日01時03分 読売新聞)

新型インフル ワクチンだけには頼れない

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Aug. 28, 2009)
Vaccine isn't the only weapon against new flu
新型インフル ワクチンだけには頼れない(8月28日付・読売社説)

Expectations are rising that infections of the H1N1 strain of influenza A and further outbreaks could be prevented once the vaccine for the new flu becomes available.
 ワクチンがあれば新型インフルエンザの感染を防ぎ、急拡大も抑えられるのではないか――。
 こんな期待が高まっているが、そうした思惑通りに行くだろうか。

However, it is far from a foregone conclusion that things will pan out as expected. Even past epidemics of seasonal influenza have not been repulsed by a vaccination program.
 例年のインフルエンザでも、ワクチンの接種で流行を抑え込めたという例はないからだ。

Of course, vaccination can work to a certain extent. During ordinary flu seasons, vaccinated people will develop only relatively mild symptoms even if they become infected with the disease.
 一定の効果はあるだろう。例年の流行でもワクチンを接種すれば症状は軽い、と言われてきた。

Medical experts also point out that the spread of infection could slow if a large number of people are vaccinated. If the number of patients falling into critical condition is reduced thanks to a vaccination program, front-line doctors and hospitals would have more time to treat flu patients in general.
 大勢が接種すると、感染拡大のペースが遅れるという効能も指摘されている。ワクチンで重症化する患者が減れば、その分、医師や病院も治療に余裕が持てる。

However, the flu vaccine has the major drawback of providing only weak preventive effects. This is different from the vaccine for measles, which can prevent the disease developing once a person is inoculated. Furthermore, vaccination in general has very minor side effects.
 問題は、インフルエンザワクチンの予防効果が低いことだ。接種すれば発症を防げる「はしかワクチン」などと異なる。しかも一般的にワクチン接種には、ごくわずかだが、副作用がある。

The government must explain the limited effectiveness of the flu vaccination to the public. The most important thing is to help people understand that inoculation is not the only countermeasure against the new influenza strain.
 政府は、インフルエンザワクチンの限界を国民に丁寧に説明する必要がある。特に大切なのは、ワクチンだけが対策ではない、と理解してもらうことだ。

===

Prevention better than cure

Obviously, preventing infection is the best way to defang the new-flu threat. Regularly washing one's hands and gargling are quintessential rules for preventing infection. Members of the public also must bear in mind that they will be unable to avoid infection if the virus spreads widely because most people are not immune to the new flu.
 まず予防する。手洗い、うがいは鉄則だ。ほとんどの人に免疫がないので、流行が拡大すれば、感染を免れることはできないという自覚も必要になる。

However, it also should be remembered that most people, excluding small children and people with kidney and other chronic diseases, would likely display only mild symptoms even if they catch the new flu. Of course, people with mild symptoms should be careful not to spread this disease.
 その際、腎臓病などの持病を抱えた人や幼児を除き、通常はほとんどが軽症で済む、ということも覚えておきたい。無論、軽症でも感染を広げない注意は要る。

Meanwhile, the shortage of vaccine for the seasonal influenza has often caused widespread consternation.
 ただ、例年のインフルエンザでも、ワクチン不足は各地に不安を広げることが、よくある。

Worryingly, the same problem has become apparent regarding the new-flu strain. Domestic manufacturers are working flat-out to produce a vaccine for the new flu, but they are unable to produce enough to meet the nation's requirements. Japan reportedly faces a shortage of about 20 million doses. However, panic over the new-flu vaccine must be avoided.
 まして、今回は新型だ。新型用ワクチン製造は本格化しているが必要量に追いつかない。国内で約2000万人分が不足する、とも言われている。新型のワクチンを巡る混乱は避けたい。

===

Govt must pull out all stops

The government must immediately discuss and decide who should be given priority in receiving vaccinations. It makes perfect sense that medical workers and people likely to develop serious symptoms should they catch the new flu be given priority. However, the current projected supply of vaccine is not sufficient even to cover these high-risk groups.
 そのためにも、ワクチンをだれに接種するか、優先順位の論議を急ぐ必要がある。医療従事者や新型感染で重症化しやすい人は当然だろう。それでも、現在の供給見通し量では追いつかない。

The government should take every possible measure to acquire enough vaccine to combat the new flu.
 政府は、新型用のワクチン確保に全力を挙げるべきだ。

Importing vaccine from the United States and European countries has been touted as the best solution to meet this shortfall. However, the government has not yet settled on measures to confirm the safety of imported vaccine and detailed procedures to deal with possible side effects.
 その切り札として、欧米などからのワクチン輸入が有力視されている。ただ、安全性を確認する方法や副作用が出た時の詳細な対応が決まっていない。

Until 15 years ago, the government required every primary and middle school student to be vaccinated against influenza. However, mandatory vaccination was terminated because of lingering doubts about its effectiveness and possible side effects.
 国内では15年前まで、小中学生全員にインフルエンザワクチン接種を義務づけていた。だが、副作用被害に加え効果を疑問視する意見も出て、廃止された。

The government must tread carefully to ensure a sense of mistrust against flu vaccine does not take hold among the public once again.
 再びワクチンへの不信感を広げることがない対応が重要だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Aug. 28, 2009)
(2009年8月28日01時16分 読売新聞)
プロフィール

srachai

自己紹介・リンク

■近況

2009年の9月15日に脳梗塞を発症、右手が少し不自由になりました。
MRAで脳梗塞の部位を特定でき、素早い処置をとれたので大事に至りませんでした。
快復にむけてリハビリ中です。
(2011/01/01更新)

■自己紹介・リンク

[ はじめに ]
タイのスラチャイです。
英語学習に王道はありません。
毎日毎日の地道な努力の積み重ねが必要です。
スラチャイはNHKのラジオ英語会話で現在の英語力を身につけました。
一日僅か15分の学習でも数年間継続すれば相当な学習効果が期待できます。

[ 名前 ]
松井 清 (スラチャイ)

[ 略歴 ]
・福岡県出身
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[ 座右の銘 ]
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(NHK基礎英語芹沢栄先生)

[ 学習の手引き ]
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