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  #21  
Old 02-20-2008, 08:37 PM
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Originally Posted by bekalc View Post
But people are making it sound like the Japanese people are angry with Masako because she didn't have a son. And that's the way that the Emperor/IHA doesn't like her. Whose to say that if Masako was out there working as much/or more than Princess Kiko, that Masako wouldn't be more respected/held in esteem.

Japan is a Conservative society, but they are wise enough to know that women don't necessarily control their own fertility... Whose to say that Kiko is respected not only for being a supposedly good mother, but also for the amount of work she does on behalf of the family...

I'm just saying that if Masako was out there, visiting hospitals for example, and doing charity work, she would probably be held in high esteem. I doubt the IHA's issues with Masako are just because Masako doesn't have a son.

And Kiko isn't exactly "keeping her mouth shut." She insisted on staying in school and even getting a master's degree. She speaks out for the needs of working women. Just because Kiko didn't have a high paced career, doesn't mean that she necessarily didn't want one.

I'm just saying that I do think it's telling that Masako never councils her outings or fun trips, but cancels public duties all the time.
I agree! We see Masako eating at restaurants all the time, don't we?

Kiko never gets ragged on because she is seen to be more self-sacrificing than Masako is, and she wasn't overwhemlmed by the demands of royal life (She didn't get ill) like Masako was, and to some extent still is.

Just my opinions, now.
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Old 02-20-2008, 08:50 PM
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People though are making it sound like Naruhito is the innocent party, and he's done absolutely nothing wrong. I've read somewhere that the IHA's issue with Masako was they felt that Masako wanted to party, go on trips to Paris, go all over, but didn't really want to do the royal duties. This may or may not be true and I do think clearly since 2 out of 3 women in the royal family ended up having mental problems, something's clearly wrong with their system.
Well, one of the issues with her was that she was prevented from going on foreign trips with her husband because the IHA wanted her to concentrate on having babies. Beats me how she was supposed to get pregnant when she was in one country and her husband was in another, so fairly clearly this wasn't the real reason for curtailing her travel. One of the Poobahs said something about how she didn't need to know how to speak all these languages in order to smile at people or something - it sounds as though she wasn't the princess they wanted, and they were trying to force her into their mould. And they ended up with a disaster, and apparently it was all her fault. Same old same old.

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Still though, the Emperor himself made comments about this, and it sounds like the rift in the family went before Hisahito....

My feelings are that Naruhito and Masako need to figure out what they are going to do... But really if they want to be the future emperor and empress they need to start stepping up now, and taking over some of the duties from his parents. If Masako cannot handle being empress, then perhaps Naruhito should step down.. Being Emperor and Empress isn't just a "title."
You assume it's their choice. I don't think any of the royals, even in the west, are in total control of what they do, and I'm sure that's far more the case in Japan. If the IHA want to showcase Prince Akishino and give him the plum assignments, there isn't a lot Prince Naruhito can do. He seems to have been a bit of a thorn in the side of the IHA for a long time, wanting his way about things like who he married; according to the Masako biography (which may or may not be accurate in this instance), the younger brother was rather wild as a youngster and was jealous of the older brother, so once he was married and had settled down, one good way to undercut the older brother would be to curry favour with the parents. Not that I'm saying that's what happened, but it's not an unknown family dynamic.

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Reports are that Naruhito's brother is ten times as busy as him, and Masako always cancels official events, but never the "fun ones." I realize here everyone wants to make the martyers. But their job is to serve their country. Do you think that it's fair that all the work gets thrown on the elderly emperor and empress, and Ashinko and Kiko?
The IHA said something not long ago about giving Prince and Princess Akishino more high-profile events to attend or something along those lines. If the Crown Prince and his wife have fewer events, do we know whether it's their choice or whether that's how their diary has been arranged by the people who do the arranging?

Seems to me that, in good Japanese fashion, Prince Naruhito is being punished for daring to be outspoken and for not just quietly conforming.
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  #23  
Old 02-20-2008, 09:03 PM
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Originally Posted by bekalc View Post
But people are making it sound like the Japanese people are angry with Masako because she didn't have a son. And that's the way that the Emperor/IHA doesn't like her. Whose to say that if Masako was out there working as much/or more than Princess Kiko, that Masako wouldn't be more respected/held in esteem.

Japan is a Conservative society, but they are wise enough to know that women don't necessarily control their own fertility... Whose to say that Kiko is respected not only for being a supposedly good mother, but also for the amount of work she does on behalf of the family...

I'm just saying that if Masako was out there, visiting hospitals for example, and doing charity work, she would probably be held in high esteem. I doubt the IHA's issues with Masako are just because Masako doesn't have a son.

And Kiko isn't exactly "keeping her mouth shut." She insisted on staying in school and even getting a master's degree. She speaks out for the needs of working women. Just because Kiko didn't have a high paced career, doesn't mean that she necessarily didn't want one.

I'm just saying that I do think it's telling that Masako never councils her outings or fun trips, but cancels public duties all the time.
If you read my posts carefully you'd know that I don't believe for one minute that the Japanese people dislike Masako for not having a son. It is the establishment behind the throne that cares, not the citizens of Japan. Before Hisahito's birth over 80% of the people who were polled wanted to see Aiko ascend the throne in her turn. It is all rather bothersome really that the IHA are insistant on having a male heir on the throne at the cost of displacing the daughter of the future Emperor and Empress. After all, a child of Aiko's would most certainly be of royal bloodline, whereas the child of a woman married into the royal family could be suspect (I'm not saying Hisahito is, mind you). The Japanese people are forming a negative opinion of Masako because of her disappearence from public life (except for the fun things). But the fact remains that Masako does not schedule her own outings. Nor can it be assumed that she has any control over whether or not her more "work oriented" outings are cancelled for her. It's also very easy to say that she should just "get out of the kitchen" until you realize that she would have her child taken from her if she does.

Kiko may have well wanted a fast paced career, but she chose to never have one. Masako did have one and had to leave it behind when she entered the royal family. It is usually easier to miss what you did have as opposed to missing what you never had.
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  #24  
Old 02-20-2008, 10:11 PM
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Until her illness, Masako was performing her royal duties without any difficulties. Actually, there were rebukes by the IHA when she dared to speak with the guests in their own language instead of through an interpreter, but at least she was carrying on her duties.

Why should the second son be more deserving? Because the IHA assigns him more duties and the choicest ones at that? You can't fight the little men in grey suits. If they are not on your side, you have a tough row to hoe.
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How do you know it's the IHA's decision not to give them more assignments. Can you prove that's just the IHA's choice. Besides, I remember reading somewhere that the new head of the IHA in the Crown Prince's house, was a family friend of Masako's. IF this is true than I don't buy that IHA is out to get them.

I'm still not understanding why "it's good for the monarchy" to flush out the Crown Prince. It seems to me the little I know that the Japanese Monarchy is extremely conservative and is all about not having scandals. Replacing the eldest son with the younger son, would be scandalous. I'm just saying is that everyone is out for conspiracies, and maybe their is no conspiracy on the part of the IHA. Didn't Naruhito once say that he wished he could have a more fulfilling job, or something like that??? Maybe Naruhito is chaffing as well....

I'm sorry I just don't get it. As I said before there are normally three sides to every story. For a long time, it sold more papers to have "the pooor little princess abused by the IHA, and I'm not saying there wasn't any of it." But I'm saying that the IHA probably has a side of the story too. If it was just the IHA being hard on Masako, if that was the only issues going on there, than I don't think there would be this clear rift between Naruhito and his family. It's not like the Emperor never stood up to the IHA himself (for example insisting on raising his own children.)
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  #25  
Old 02-21-2008, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by bekalc View Post
How do you know it's the IHA's decision not to give them more assignments. Can you prove that's just the IHA's choice. Besides, I remember reading somewhere that the new head of the IHA in the Crown Prince's house, was a family friend of Masako's. IF this is true than I don't buy that IHA is out to get them.

I'm still not understanding why "it's good for the monarchy" to flush out the Crown Prince. It seems to me the little I know that the Japanese Monarchy is extremely conservative and is all about not having scandals. Replacing the eldest son with the younger son, would be scandalous. I'm just saying is that everyone is out for conspiracies, and maybe their is no conspiracy on the part of the IHA. Didn't Naruhito once say that he wished he could have a more fulfilling job, or something like that??? Maybe Naruhito is chaffing as well....

I'm sorry I just don't get it. As I said before there are normally three sides to every story. For a long time, it sold more papers to have "the pooor little princess abused by the IHA, and I'm not saying there wasn't any of it." But I'm saying that the IHA probably has a side of the story too. If it was just the IHA being hard on Masako, if that was the only issues going on there, than I don't think there would be this clear rift between Naruhito and his family. It's not like the Emperor never stood up to the IHA himself (for example insisting on raising his own children.)
It could well be that the IHA are scared of Naruhito. Already having proved himself willing to air their dirty laundry in public, he has not so subtly hinted that he would consider shaking things up once he ascends the throne. I believe his words were along the lines of "the need to review official duties" which is tantamount to saying "Hey IHA, when I am Emperor things are going to change around here". The IHA do not like change. They have been known to re-write history to avoid "confusing" the Japanese people when glaring errors have been pointed out to them.

The IHA most likely believe that the Akishinos would be much easier to manage as an Imperial couple.

Yes it is true that the Household Chamberlain for Naruhito is a family friend of the Owadas. He was also sympathetic to the idea of putting Aiko on the throne ahead of Hisahito. I'd like to see him do more for Naruhito and Masako.
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  #26  
Old 02-21-2008, 11:50 AM
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I for one think it is very difficult for us, outsiders, to pass judgments about the life behind the walls of the Imperial Palace solely based on articles, tabloid news, and books. Media is known for its ability to paint totally favourable public image (sacrificing and sweet Princess Kiko) or tarnish this public image (lazy Crown Princess Masako, who is more concerned with the celebrity life style than her duties as a member of the Imperial family). The Imperial Household Agency has been serving [namely serving] Prince Akishino’s family in more favourable light because namely this couple has saved the institution. I still believe Crown Princely couple will become favourites over night as soon as they produce an heir. As for public engagements, I assume that Crown Princess Masako does not have much influence in this question. The IHA reigns supreme.
In one word, it is impossible for us to determine whether or not Crown Princess gets better, whether Crown Princess Masako cancels her engagements herself or she is highly recommended to do so.
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  #27  
Old 02-21-2008, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Al_bina View Post
I for one think it is very difficult for us, outsiders, to pass judgments about the life behind the walls of the Imperial Palace solely based on articles, tabloid news, and books. Media is known for its ability to paint totally favourable public image (sacrificing and sweet Princess Kiko) or tarnish this public image (lazy Crown Princess Masako, who is more concerned with the celebrity life style than her duties as a member of the Imperial family). The Imperial Household Agency has been serving [namely serving] Prince Akishino’s family in more favourable light because namely this couple has saved the institution. I still believe Crown Princely couple will become favourites over night as soon as they produce an heir. As for public engagements, I assume that Crown Princess Masako does not have influence to this question. The IHA reigns supreme. In one word, it is impossible us to determine whether or not Crown Princess gets better, whether Crown Princess Masako cancels her engagements herself or she is highly recommended to do so.

Your right, but for example the Crown Princess and her husband were suppose to attend a figure skating event. The Crown Princess went to the opening ceremony and then bowed out of attending the figure skating event, citing fatique. (Naruhito went alone)

Then, there are reports that when they went to the Netherlands, they were asked to do some public duties as well, but they refused, but then went to all kinds of private meetings. (This I from what I hear where some of the anger is coming from.)
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  #28  
Old 02-22-2008, 10:44 AM
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I believe the trip to the Netherlands was classified officially as a private vacation. Something that provoked the Japanese press at the time, by the way, seeing as Masako was not doing any official duties at home. However, the Crown Princely couple did attend a few formal dinners with the DRF as well as photo calls with the children, much like every other royal family does on vacation. Scheduling official duties would have made it an official visit as opposed to the private visit that it was.
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  #29  
Old 02-22-2008, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by bekalc View Post
[shorterned]
And whose to say that the second brother isn't more deserving anyways. The only reason Naruhito is the heir is because he was born elder, and being born first doesn't necessarily make you the better person. [shortened]...
Allow to remind you that Crown Princes are not elected. Traditionally personal characteristics and charisma have nothing to do with being Crown Prince or Crown Princess, the birth order has. Whether or not you deem it fair, it is the order of things in most royal families.If Prince Akishino had a luck to be born after Crown Prince Naruhito, he should just enjoy his place in the Imperial Family.
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  #30  
Old 02-23-2008, 01:11 AM
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I honestly don't understand what the purpose of the IHA is besides being a pain in the royal behinds! Does the CP have the power to change the ways of the IHA once he becomes Emperor? Because it sounds like the servants (IHA) are running the palace and the royals are held hostage.
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  #31  
Old 02-23-2008, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Al_bina View Post
Allow to remind you that Crown Princes are not elected. Traditionally personal characteristics and charisma have nothing to do with being Crown Prince or Crown Princess, the birth order has. Whether or not you deem it fair, it is the order of things in most royal families.If Prince Akishino had a luck to be born after Crown Prince Naruhito, he should just enjoy his place in the Imperial Family.
True. But one could argue that according to the law, young Hisahito is the heir over Aiko. And I'm not sure why this is any more fair than laws which rule the eldest, given Japan's tradition of passing it on through males

(Yes there were female emperesses but their kids never inherited unless they were descendent from the male line) One could argue that neither situation is "fair"

I'm not saying Naruhito isn't the heir according to the law though, what I'm saying is if Naruhito doesn't want to do the duties, and or his wife never does the duties, then perhaps he should consider stepping aside.
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  #32  
Old 02-23-2008, 11:55 PM
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[shortened]
I'm not saying Naruhito isn't the heir according to the law though, what I'm saying is if Naruhito doesn't want to do the duties, and or his wife never does the duties, then perhaps he should consider stepping aside.
Why should Crown Prince Naruhito consider stepping aside? What are your source for stating that Crown Princely couple does not want to do their duties? Have you got your own sources in the IHA?
I see no reason for Prince Naruhito stepping down. He does perform his duties as Crown Prince as well as Prince Akishino. I do not understand this hysteria that surrounds outstanding performance of Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko. They do not do anything special and enjoy the same or better lifestyle as the Crown Princely couple does.
Once again, we do not know what is going behind the walls of the Imperial Palace.
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  #33  
Old 02-24-2008, 12:53 PM
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While I basicaly agree with Al bina, "we really don't know". I have a different opinion of the press. It seems to me the press are always trying to pick a fight with someone. Especially here in the US. So I always read articles with a little bit of unbelief. I also agree with bekalc in post #16 "...don't necessarily have control of their own fertitility...". Biologically speaking doesn't sperm from the father control the sex of a child? Surely no one can, or would think Masako is truly in control of when, or if she gets pregnant, or what the sex of the child would be.
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  #34  
Old 02-24-2008, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by RubyPrincess168 View Post
I honestly don't understand what the purpose of the IHA is besides being a pain in the royal behinds! Does the CP have the power to change the ways of the IHA once he becomes Emperor? Because it sounds like the servants (IHA) are running the palace and the royals are held hostage.
Well that's the question isn't it. The IHA is a governmental agency. While their primary function is the maintenance of the Imperial Family and the royal residences, they don't necessarily "work" for the Imperial Family. They work for the citizens of Japan like any other civil servants. At least in theory. The truth is that they seen to be a power unto themselves. The Emperor himself takes his instructions from them about his day to day activities and the Prime Minister of Japan has to ask their permission to see the Emperor. Also, like members of the Imperial Family, many of the more influential members of the IHA inherit their positions from their fathers before them. So it is unlikely that the Imperial Family could change the ways of the IHA unless a huge public stink is made. This may be the reason why they are trying so hard to step on Naruhito if they believe he is planning on doing just that.

The argument has been made that the duty of the IHA is to preserve the purity of the royal bloodline that makes the assertion that the Emperor is a living god, descended from the goddess Amaterasu (funny that the aggressive male line lineage actually stems from a goddess and not a god). So what could be seen from one side as faithful devotion to a religious belief could be construed as a power trip from the other.
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  #35  
Old 02-24-2008, 03:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Al_bina View Post
Why should Crown Prince Naruhito consider stepping aside? What are your source for stating that Crown Princely couple does not want to do their duties? Have you got your own sources in the IHA?
I see no reason for Prince Naruhito stepping down. He does perform his duties as Crown Prince as well as Prince Akishino. I do not understand this hysteria that surrounds outstanding performance of Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko. They do not do anything special and enjoy the same or better lifestyle as the Crown Princely couple does.
Once again, we do not know what is going behind the walls of the Imperial Palace.
His wife hasn't done official duties in years. According to the royal families' website, Akishinko is 10 times more busy than Naruhito.

Akishinko himself mentioned wanting to do more duties to take some of the burdens of his parents (who do look frail). Now maybe the IHA does just give Akishinko more duties, but who says Naruhito himself isn't wanting less duties, he's talked of wanting to do something more "useful" in the past. However, I'm sure Naruhito could mention wanting more duties.

As for Misako she hasn't really done official duties in years. I'm saying that if Naruhito and his family can't handle the duties of being Emperor than he should step aside. Now, I don't know if he can or cannot handle the duties. I think it would be especially the case if it's clear that his wife cannot handle it, then a good husband should step down.

Here is an article about the problems with the Royal family, and it sounds like it occurred way before Hisahito

Royal family dynamics complex / Imperial Household Agency chief's remarks hint at communication problem

Shigeo Inoue, Masatoshi Imai and Masayuki Ota / Yomiuri Shimbun Staff
At a press conference held prior to his 48th birthday, Crown Prince Naruhito said little about the candid advice offered by Imperial Household Agency Chief Shingo Haketa, who recommended that he visit the Emperor and the Empress more often.
Haketa mentioned the private matter while speaking to reporters at a press conference on Feb. 13, shedding light on the lack of communication among members of the Imperial family.
Haketa said the Emperor and the Empress were concerned at how few visits Princess Aiko had paid, a remark observers say was an unusually candid hint to the crown prince, who has made few visits to the Emperor and the Empress in recent years. The comment was believed to have been made as a way of urging the crown prince to follow through on his promise last February to arrange opportunities for Princess Aiko to meet the Emperor and the Empress more often.
An Imperial Household Agency official said the visits Haketa discussed were only an example.
"Haketa repeatedly asked the crown prince to have proper respect for what he promised. It was a message that the crown prince should make good on his promise," the official explained.
In 2004 the crown prince held a press conference during which he proposed a review of his public functions and said certain developments had denied Princess Masako's career as a diplomat and also her personality.
Aides to the Emperor and the Empress reportedly felt the real reasons for the crown prince's remarks were difficult to understand, and that his explanation was not sufficient.
Another Imperial Household Agency official said at the time that the Emperor had asked the crown prince to explain his remarks to the public.
"The Emperor and the Empress weren't satisfied with his explanation, and worried that his remarks had been made the comments lightly. The Emperor and the Empress also think the recent remarks about Princess Aiko's visits were made in a similar manner," he said.
Observers of the Imperial family say the Emperor's reaction to the crown prince's remarks are a reflection of his general views on life. ....

Royal family dynamics complex / Imperial Household Agency chief's remarks hint at communication problem : National : DAILY YOMIURI ONLINE (The Daily Yomiuri)
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Old 02-24-2008, 04:38 PM
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Well, there are too many interpreters and communication specialists between Emperor, Empress, and their children. The main issues are lost in translation. I am inclined to agree with Elspeth and those members, who think that the IHA has been serving Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko, the Saviours of the Institute, more favourably. The situation with Crown Princess is totally unclear to me.
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Old 02-24-2008, 04:40 PM
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Well, there are too many interpreters and communication specialists between Emperor, Empress, and their children. The main issues are lost in translation. I am inclined to agree with Elspeth and those members, who think that the IHA has been serving Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko, the Saviours of the Institute, in more favourably. The situation with Crown Princess is totally unclear to me.
IF the IHA is specifically asking him to visit his parents, then I think there IS an element of choice of the Crown Prince not to visit his parents. I'm not sure you can blame that one the IHA. It sounds like by asking him to visit, there is an element of an olive branch on the part of the Emperor and it's the Prince who isn't taking it for whatever reason.

His parents are elderly and his mother is clearly not doing very well health wise. Not visiting doesn't look good on his part. And the little I know about the Emperor and Empress, they seem like good people.
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Old 02-24-2008, 04:46 PM
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Crown Prince may have serious reasons for doing so. We know only one side, that is the IHA rebukes Crown Prince in public.
We do not know what kind of parents Emperor and Empress were and are.
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Old 02-24-2008, 05:27 PM
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Crown Prince may have serious reasons for doing so. We know only one side, that is the IHA rebukes Crown Prince in public.
We do not know what kind of parents Emperor and Empress were and are.
We know that they have good relationships with their other two children, and that they insisted on raising their own children rather than using nannies.

I also read an article that at one point in time Naruhito was a "momma's boy." And even though the Emperor and Empress had issues with his parents. Reportedly the former Empress was cruel to the current Empress, they still visited his parents regularly.
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Old 02-24-2008, 05:35 PM
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Allow to remind you that Crown Princes are not elected. Traditionally personal characteristics and charisma have nothing to do with being Crown Prince or Crown Princess, the birth order has. Whether or not you deem it fair, it is the order of things in most royal families.If Prince Akishino had a luck to be born after Crown Prince Naruhito, he should just enjoy his place in the Imperial Family.
That seems like an almost impossible thing for Prince Akishino to carry out because the IHA and media focus so much on him because of the Princess Aiko controversy that "ended" with the birth of an heir than happened to be his son.
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