The last paragraph of my incoherent ramblings of September 12, I failed to mention that I was writing about the proportional vote, not the total vote.
I here offer the corrected version:
A nice little demonstration of the political genius of this “ice cream for everybody” approach can be found in this evening's Asahi Shimbun. Page 3 is crammed with an even-more-abstruse-than-usual set of post-election, multi-colored, three-dimensional graphs that are guaranteed to resist even the most stubborn reader's comprehension.
However, the graph in the top right hand corner of page 3 tells a beautiful tale. According to the Asahi Shimbun's calculations, the LDP received 1) inside Tokyo, 2) in all the cities and 3) in the town and villages of the countryside exactly the same fraction of the proportional vote: 38%. Pathetically, the Democratic Party in defeat nearly matched the LDP in its consistency, winning 30% of the proportional vote in Tokyo and 31% in the cities and towns and villages.
In sacrificing a small part of the LDP's rural support (3%) the Koizumi LDP blew away the Democrats in the urban areas--just as political scientists had always predicted.