Maybe it was an awesome April Fool's Day prank, but Ishihara Nobuteru and the Liberal Democratic Party seemed deep into wishing for ponies on Sunday -- because for as long as one is asking for the impossible, one might as well ask for a pony too*.
In a speech in Nara on Sunday, Ishihara, the LDP's Secretary-General, said that his party would cooperate with the ruling Democratic Party of Japan on the passage of the legislation raising the consumption tax to 10% if:
1) Prime Minister Noda Yoshihiko engineered an expulsion of Ozawa Ichiro and his followers from the DPJ
2) The DPJ would drop its insistence on a minimal national pension payment of 70,000 yen per month promised in the DPJ's 2009 manifesto, and
3) The prime minister would make a firm commitment to dissolve the Diet and hold elections immediately after the passage of the consumption tax legislation
(Link - J)
Actually, Ishihara did not say that his party will definitely cooperate should the Prime Minister Noda and the DPJ deliver on the above. What he said was, "The shoots of the LDP's agreeing with the bill would emerge."
Oh, what a lovely seasonal reference!
Seriously, the above was Ishihara's offer.
No, I do not think he had been drinking. Why do you ask?
* The concept of wishing for a pony too was a putdown of conservative and libertarian thinking used by liberal Americans during the presidency of George W. Bush. It is derived from this famous blog post.