All in all, Abe Shinzo just gave a pretty damn spirited and sound defense of his Cabinet's economic policies. Most importantly for the PM, in response to the idiotic "Abenomics has failed" argument, Abe went straight to the nub of the problem and asked his critics, rhetorically, "If not what I am doing, what is it that you would do?"
The first of the two weak points in the whole affair was when the PM reiterated his bogus proposition that the great failure of the Democratic Party of Japan was its having violated its campaign manifesto in voting for a rise in the consumption tax without doing as he is doing, dissolving the Diet and asking the people their opinion of the change of plans first. That the DPJ changed its plans due to its having been boxed in by decades of LDP profligacy and because it could not escape the accusation from the LDP of baramaki ("throwing money around") in its own attempts at stimulus...and that raising the consumption tax was one of the few legislative items it could push through both Houses of the Diet, specifically because it was AN LDP MANIFESTO PROMISE, the PM did not...shall we say, "make clear"?
The second weak moment was when the second questioner in the Q&A called him out on his bogus proposition regarding the DPJ and calling an election. The PM became testy and wasted a good 3-4 minutes explaining why his proposition was defensible.
My grade for Prime Minister Abe's performance: A
for both substance and effort.
I admit, a bias...but in a negative direction. After hearing what he said to the Japanese press in Brisbane and his attacks on Edana Yukio and the DPJ in the Diet I had very, very low expectations for tonight's press conference.
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