Thursday, November 22, 2007

Smiles all around

It must be the holiday tomorrow.

The 9 o'clock news had a lengthy roundup of the meetings today between Prime Minister Fukuda Yasuo and the heads of all the other parties in the Diet.

Peculiar were the tête-à-têtes. No, downright twisted.

With the notable exception of Ozawa Ichirō, who seemed intent on performing his best "Roh Moo-hyun meets a Japanese Prime Minister" impersonation, the heads of the parties were all wore broadest smiles, shaking with laughter as they lined up for their "two-shot" poses with the PM. He grasped their hands warmly and made what seemed impossible-to-resist small talk.

You would have thought they were all coalition allies, rather than fierce political enemies.

Adversity has the strangest effect on the PM himself. The more hopeless the situation--and the situation for the revised Indian Ocean dispatch legislation is hopeless--Ozawa reiterated his party's adamant opposition during the meeting and in his press conference afterward--the bouncier and looser-limbed the PM becomes. He almost appeared to relish the pointlessness of his every round of asking the party leaders for a more flexible attitude toward the revised bill.

Oh, well. Perhaps a foolish hope is better than no hope at all.

Enjoy your holidays ye political types.

Autumn colors upon Ōtsukayama
Ōme City, Tokyo Metropolitan District
November 18, 2007

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