Same as it ever wasIt's back...along with all the horrible memories.
Same as it ever was
Same as it ever was
Same as it...ever was.
- Talking Heads, "Once In A Lifetime" (1981)
Check out the flash at 0:13 and the more sustained holding of the expression in the 0:17 to 0:24 interval in the below (time sensitive):
That facial expression that had one leaping out of one's chair and punching the screen, hoping to wipe it off of Abe Shinzo's child of privilege face.
No still photo captures The Smirk in its essence. The below comes close, though.
Recently I have thinking that what I thought was a bug is actually a feature.
The members of the LDP's Diet delegation who survived the carnage of August 2009 come in two flavors. One set are the Koizumi Children and reformers, who largely won reelection via the party proportional list. These folks, loyal to the party, sided with Ishiba Shigeru, the brainy candidate with the support of the local chapters. Katayama Satsuki's being seated at Ishiba's right hand during the voting was the physical manifestation of this allegiance.
However, a larger base of LDP delegates who survived the 2009 election had either longstanding family ties to a district and/or an adherence to the most anachronistic of right wing ideologies. For the this group, Abe was the candidate of choice. For the ideologues, he was their most obvious and possibly the richest (I have to check the asset listings -- which are bogus anyway because so many politicians shelter their wealth under the names of near relatives) champion of their values, such as they are.
For the established names, being members of the LDP is icing on their cakes, their hereditary support groups (koenkai) being the source of the margin of victory come election time. For these Diet members the very last person they would want as party president is someone with his own charisma and a cerebrum at the top of his spine. They would want to have the most pliable and manipulable president possible, one who would be grateful for having received their votes, and most likely to answer to their whims and protests.
As one researcher I has told me, individual voters in rural areas justify their choices by saying, "Candidate X I respect but candidate Y I can control. That's why I go with Y."
I do not want to believe that the ticking time bomb of the bond issuance bill will precipitate the forced passage of a slapdash electoral reform bill, legalizing what would be a constitutional black hole of a Diet dissolution, triggering an election where, if current public opinion polls are accurate, the LDP would be returned to power, leading to Abe becoming prime minister.
However, the clock is indeed ticking on the government's ability to finance its activities, making the nightmare return of Abe Shinzo, Mr. Prime Minister, more than just a terribly unfunny joke.
To not see The Smirk every night on my screen, Amaterasu Omikami and all the 8 million kami of this blessed land, of this to you I beg.