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  #241  
Old 10-22-2016, 01:25 AM
Heir Apparent
 
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I agree and from various articles and polls, most of Japanese understand and support Emperor Akihito's intention so I don't believe Japan will loose face or be so uncomfortable. It will feel different to say "His Majesty/the Emperor" and mean Naruhito but that's a transition every successor goes through.

2018 doesn't seem so far away. Maybe that's because I didn't expect the government to start anything for abdication this year so the existence of a panel and the first meeting has happened seems "fast" to me. Fortunately, Emperor Akihito health is stable despite his age and past issues/treatment. If the government decides on early 2018, that's only a year and some months.
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  #242  
Old 10-25-2016, 01:30 AM
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It looks like the second panel meeting is on the 27th and 3 private hearings with Imperial institution and history experts beginning in November. Source: last paragraph of Asahi
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  #243  
Old 10-27-2016, 10:56 PM
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Quote:
An advisory panel to the government considering Emperor Akihito’s possible abdication Thursday unveiled a list of 16 academics and other experts it will hear from starting next month.

[...]

After holding a second session Thursday at the Prime Minister’s Office, the panel’s chairman, Takashi Imai, told a press conference that the panel will hear opinions from 16 intellectuals — whose expertise includes history, the Imperial Household system and constitutional law — in three sessions to be held in November.

The experts will be individually asked to convey their thoughts on such matters as the Emperor’s possible abdication, his duties and the creation of a permanent legal system enabling abdications.

Among the selected intellectuals are Makoto Oishi, professor of constitutional law at Kyoto University’s graduate school; journalist Yoshiko Sakurai; former Supreme Court Justice Itsuo Sonobe; and Takahisa Furukawa, professor of modern Japanese history at Nihon University.

“We have selected them so we can hear a wide variety of opinions from experts in various fields to proceed with discussions without prejudice,” said Imai, who also serves as honorary chairman of Keidanren.

The panel will hold meetings on Nov. 7, 14 and 30.

During Thursday’s meeting, the panel discussed the Emperor’s official duties, the role of a regent and past abdications, Takashi Mikuriya, a member of the panel and a professor emeritus of political science at the University of Tokyo, told the press conference.

[...]

The panel, however, did not discuss the sustainability of the Imperial succession, said an official who took part in the meeting.
Panel draws 16 experts to weigh Emperor's possible abdication | The Japan Times

The full list:
  1. Nobuo Ishihara (former deputy chief cabinet secretary)
  2. Akira Imatani (Teikyo University Professor)
  3. Katsumi Iwai (journalist)
  4. Makoto Oishi (Kyoto University Graduate School Professor)
  5. Yasuo Ohara (Kokugaikuindai Professor Emeritus)
  6. Hidehiko Kasahara (Keio University Professor)
  7. Yoshiko Sakurai (journalist)
  8. Itsuo Sonobe (former Supreme Court justice)
  9. Kazuyuki Takahashi (Tokyo University professor emeritus)
  10. Tokoro Isao (Kyotosangyodai Professor Emeritus)
  11. Hirakawa YuHiroshi (University of Tokyo professor emeritus)
  12. Takahisa Furukawa (Nihon Univ. Professor)
  13. Hosaka Masayasu (non-fiction writer)
  14. Momochi Akira (Kokushikan large graduate School Visiting Professor)
  15. Hidetsugu Yagi (Reitakudai Professor)
  16. Shoichi Watanabe (Sophia University Professor Emeritus)
Source: Asahi

Experts picked for views on Emperor's abdication - News - NHK WORLD - English
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  #244  
Old 10-29-2016, 07:12 PM
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Quote:
[...]

“We selected experts whose views are clear. The selection has a good balance,” said Takashi Imai, the task force's leader and honorary chairman of Keidanren (Japan Business Federation), in a news conference.

[...]

It will listen to the 16 experts for 30 minutes each in November. The total of 16 hearings will be conducted in three installments--on Nov. 7, 14 and 30.

[...]

Almost half of the chosen experts have said they basically tolerate the Abe administration’s idea of passing a special measures law to make Akihito’s abdication possible.

“The institutionalization of abdication has various problems, including the possibility that an emperor will be forced to abdicate. Because of that, I am basically opposed to it,” Itsuo Sonobe, a former Supreme Court justice, told The Asahi Shimbun on Oct. 27.

However, he added, “This time, the government should make abdication possible with a special measures law in order to accept the feelings of the emperor, who is now elderly.”

“It is desirable to revise the Imperial House Law," Isao Tokoro, professor emeritus of Japanese history of law and culture at Kyoto Sangyo University, told The Asahi Shimbun on Oct. 27. "In order to realize the revision, however, it is necessary to decide conditions for abdication by assuming the possibility that an emperor may also want to abdicate based on reasons other than his advanced age.”

“To start off, the government should deal with the issue with a special measures law and should then continue discussions toward the exit, which means revisions to the Imperial House Law.”

A scholar of politics, who was not selected to give views, said, “(When you look at the 16), I cannot deny the impression that the council has already reached its conclusion that the government should pass a special measures law.”

The council did select opponents of Akihito’s abdication in the 16, apparently a gesture to supporters of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, of whom many are opposed to abdication.

One of the opponents is Yasuo Ohara, professor emeritus of religion and administration at Kokugakuin University. He calls for utilization of the regent system.

[...]
16 experts selected to speak on emperor's wish to abdicate : The Asahi Shimbun
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  #245  
Old 10-30-2016, 04:07 AM
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An interesting counter-argument.
That is that it should be made clear that an emperor can't be forced - I mean encouraged... to abdicate if that emperor happens to be "difficult" politically speaking.

But then shouldn't there be a way to get rid of an unsuitable emperor as well?
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  #246  
Old 11-01-2016, 12:21 AM
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More about the 16 experts and the 3 hearings in Nov.
Quote:
[...]

Nine of the 16 specialists have been involved in discussions regarding the Imperial system as members of an expert panel, or have spoken at hearings under the cabinets of former prime ministers Junichiro Koizumi and Yoshihiko Noda.

[...]

The panel selected its specialists after agreeing on the following criteria:
— The specialists make their judgments on the basis of the authority of the Imperial system, history and the Constitution
— To assess how often the specialists are quoted in the media
— To hear diverse views to avoid predeterminations during discussions
— To choose specialists who have definite opinions

[...]

Sonobe and Hosaka, for instance, are sympathetic to the idea of allowing an abdication only by the current Emperor. On the other hand, Yagi, from the standpoint of securing the stability of the Imperial Throne, is against abdication. Watanabe contends that the situation should be handled by installing a regent. Sakurai and some others are known to have conservative views and to be very capable of conveying their opinions to the public.

Some in the government desired specialists with moderate views, which may have had some influence on the choice of specialists. The people selected have had strong ties with the government in the past. As one source close to the Prime Minister’s Office put it: “We want people whose statements we know will not make us anxious.”

More than half of the specialists have participated in previous government discussions on the revision of the Imperial Household Law. Sonobe has served as acting chairman of a panel of experts initiated by the Koizumi Cabinet in 2005 to deliberate on the issue. Ishihara, who served as deputy chief cabinet secretary for seven years and three months, took charge of clerical matters when the Showa Emperor passed away.
'Balanced' specialist group to give views on abdication - The Japan News

Nov 7:
  • Hirakawa YuHiroshi, University of Tokyo professor emeritus (Comparative Literature)
  • Takahisa Furukawa, Nihon University Professor (Japan modern history)
  • Hosaka Masayasu Mr. (non-fiction writer)
  • Yasuo Ohara, Kokugaikuindai professor emeritus (religion administrative theory)
  • Tokoro Isao, Kyotosangyodai Professor Emeritus (Japan legislation cultural history)
Nov 14:
  • Shoichi Watanabe, Sophia professor emeritus (English)
  • Katsumi Iwai (journalist)
  • Hidehiko Kasahara, Keio University Professor (Japan political history)
  • Ms. Yoshiko Sakurai (journalist)
  • Nobuo Ishihara, former Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary
  • Akira Imatani, Teikyo University Professor ( Japan medieval history)
Nov 30:
  • Hidetsugu Yagi, Reitakudai Professor (Constitution)
  • Momochi Akira, Kokushikan large Graduate School Visiting Professor (Constitution)
  • Makoto Oishi, Kyoto University Graduate School Professor (Constitution)
  • Kazuyuki Takahashi, University of Tokyo professor emeritus (Constitution)
  • Itsuo Sonobe, former Supreme Court judge
Source: Mainichi
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  #247  
Old 11-06-2016, 10:46 PM
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Quote:
Twenty-four percent of Diet members support the idea of establishing a special law that will allow only the present Emperor to abdicate, according to a recent Yomiuri Shimbun survey.

[...]

Asked about how to deal with the Emperor’s intention to abdicate, 32 percent of lawmakers surveyed favored the idea of enabling the abdication of the present and all subsequent emperors by revising the Imperial House Law, a stance that is supported by many members of the public. Meanwhile, 36 percent of the respondents did not give an answer.

[...]

The survey also found 7 percent are in favor of the idea of reducing the burden of the Emperor’s official duties by reviewing requirements for a regent and vicarious execution while 1 percent said there is no need to submit a special law or revise the Imperial House Law.

By party, 37 percent of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party members supported the enactment of a special law while 16 percent said they would prefer a revision of the Imperial House Law. Among Komeito members, 18 percent said they favor a special law while 5 percent would prefer amending the Imperial House Law.

By contrast, 60 percent of Democratic Party members supported the idea of revising the Imperial House Law, substantially higher than the 5 percent who supported the enactment of a special law.

In opinion polls, many people are calling for a way to systematize abdication through the amendment of the Imperial House Law. According to a nationwide opinion survey conducted by The Yomiuri Shimbun last month, the number of those who said systemic reform should be carried out to enable the abdication of the present and subsequent emperors was the highest at 65 percent while only 26 percent said a special law should be established to allow only the present Emperor to abdicate.
Yomiuri survey / Abdication options split lawmakers - The Japan News
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  #248  
Old 11-07-2016, 06:11 AM
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Interesting.

But I doubt it will make that big a difference, politically speaking.
The current nationalist government seems to be pretty secure and there is no general election looming in the horizon.

So politically speaking this won't be an election-topic unless the current government drags this out for years.
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  #249  
Old 11-07-2016, 10:42 PM
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Another poll and more on the Emperor’s workload

Quote:
A Yomiuri Shimbun survey found 61 percent of respondents believe that the bill related to the Emperor’s abdication that the government aims to submit during next year’s ordinary Diet session should be enacted as soon as possible, while 33 percent believe it should be considered carefully before action is taken.

In the previous survey conducted from Oct. 7 to 9, a total of 48 percent believed the government should speed up its efforts to reach a conclusion on abdication, while 45 percent said it should consider the issue carefully. The questions in the latest survey were different from the previous one, but the number of respondents in favor of handling the issue quickly has now exceeded 50 percent.

In the nationwide survey conducted from Friday to Sunday, 66 percent of respondents were in favor of the government aiming for legal revisions that would allow abdication for the current and subsequent emperors, 25 percent said a special law should be created to allow only the current Emperor to abdicate, and 5 percent felt no need to allow abdications. These were almost the same results as in the previous survey.
[…]
Poll: Swift action sought on abdication - The Japan News
Quote:
The Imperial Household Agency, at the Oct. 27 meeting of a government panel debating issues related to the Emperor’s possible abdication, said that his official duties have increased partly because of a rise in the number of large-scale natural disasters such as earthquakes and torrential rains, according to a summary of the discussions released Friday.

At the second meeting of the panel, the agency explained that the Emperor, now 82, has made more visits to disaster-stricken areas to console affected residents than his father and predecessor, Emperor Showa, the summary showed.

The annual number of the Emperor’s public duties as the symbol of the state stands at 529, compared with 344 for his father when he was 82 years old, according to documents distributed by the agency at the meeting.

Also contributing to the Emperor’s crammed schedule were his visits to domestic and overseas locations related to World War II, including former fierce battlefields and the atomic-bombed cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, to mourn lost lives, the agency said.

It added that he meets with foreign officials more frequently than Emperor Showa did, as the number of countries in the world has increased, according to the summary.

One member of the panel asked what standard was used to review the Emperor’s duties. The agency replied that there was no specific standard and that only regular duties have been put on review.

The agency was also asked for explanations about how abdication would affect the application of various relevant systems such as inheritance tax.

One member said the panel should seek opinions from the public, especially young people, about the Emperor stepping down while alive.
[…]
Emperor's duties expanded as result of natural disasters - The Japan News
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  #250  
Old 11-10-2016, 03:53 AM
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Quote:
[...]

The Nov. 7 hearing of the five experts before a government-appointed council was the first of three scheduled for November.

[...]

Masayasu Hosaka, a nonfiction writer, and Isao Tokoro, professor emeritus of Japanese history of law and culture at Kyoto Sangyo University, indicated support for a special measures law that would only allow abdication by the current emperor. Their stance was based on the condition that the Imperial House Law would be later revised to allow for abdication by all subsequent emperors.

“Because the emperor has made clear his feelings, it behooves those of us in the present generation to create a new Imperial House Law,” Hosaka told reporters after the hearing.

[...]

During the hearing, Tokoro said that while the special measures law should be enacted as quickly as possible, the desirable alternative was to revise the Imperial House Law if at all possible.

Sukehiro Hirakawa, a professor emeritus of history at the University of Tokyo, and Yasuo Ohara, professor emeritus of religion and administration at Kokugakuin University, opposed abdication.

After the hearing, Hirakawa met with reporters and touched on the fact that Akihito outlined what he considered the emperor’s public duties during the August address.

“It is not rational to allow the emperor to abdicate because he feels he cannot fulfill the duties that he himself defined,” Hirakawa said.

Ohara said the current regent system should be used rather than allow for abdication.

The fifth expert who spoke was Takahisa Furukawa, a history professor at Nihon University. While taking a cautious approach to abdication, he also said that revising the Imperial House Law was the preferred course if abdication was to be allowed.

Furukawa later told reporters that passing a special measures law to allow for abdication in response to what the emperor said in his address could be considered a violation of the Constitution, which prohibits the emperor from having political authority.

Also on Nov. 7, Yasuhiko Nishimura, vice-grand steward of the Imperial Household Agency, held a news conference in which he stressed that it would be difficult to drastically reduce the number of official events that would require attendance by the emperor.

Nishimura explained that one reason for the increased burden of official duties was that the number of member states in the United Nations has more than doubled since the Showa Era (1926-1989). That means sharply more audiences by the emperor with ambassadors who assume their posts in Tokyo, as well as with Japanese ambassadors before they go abroad.

There has also been a large number of international conferences in Japan that the emperor has to attend, Nishimura explained.
Experts split on whether to allow Emperor Akihito to abdicate : The Asahi Shimbun


Although the Emperor has to meet with ambassadors as specified in Article 7 of the Constitution, I'm not certain he has to attend so many conferences. Couldn't he delegate some to CP Naruhito or Prince Akishino?
Quote:
Article 7. The Emperor, with the advice and approval of the Cabinet, shall perform the following acts in matters of state on behalf of the people:

Promulgation of amendments of the constitution, laws, cabinet orders and treaties.
Convocation of the Diet.
Dissolution of the House of Representatives.
Proclamation of general election of members of the Diet.
Attestation of the appointment and dismissal of Ministers of State and other officials as provided for by law, and of full powers and credentials of Ambassadors and Ministers.
Attestation of general and special amnesty, commutation of punishment, reprieve, and restoration of rights.
Awarding of honors.
Attestation of instruments of ratification and other diplomatic documents as provided for by law.
Receiving foreign ambassadors and ministers.
Performance of ceremonial functions.
http://japan.kantei.go.jp/constituti...itution_e.html
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  #251  
Old 11-14-2016, 08:40 PM
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Quote:
Opinions on Emperor Akihito’s possible abdication were divided again Monday among experts summoned to a government-commissioned panel tasked with considering how the burden on the 82-year-old monarch can be alleviated.

Three university professors, two journalists and a former deputy chief Cabinet secretary presented views on the issue during the second of three sessions where the panel hears opinions about the Imperial Household system. Opinions were also divided in the first session held last week.

After attending the panel meeting, Shoichi Watanabe, professor emeritus at Sophia University, expressed opposition to the Emperor’s abdication, saying a regent should be installed as stipulated by the current law as a way to alleviate his burden.

“I am really grateful that the Emperor is willing to work in view of the public,” Watanabe, also known for his books on history, told reporters, referring to the Emperor’s earlier remarks suggesting installing a regent is not preferable.

“But I believe the Emperor would be fulfilling his duty as long as he prays for the country and citizens in the palace.”

In contrast, another summoned expert, journalist Katsumi Iwai, who has been covering Imperial matters, called for a revision of the Imperial House Law to enable every aged Emperor to abdicate, saying the current system of reigning for life is “cruel.”

[...]

Takashi Mikuriya, a panel member and also professor emeritus of political science at the University of Tokyo, said after the meeting that the panel is not focusing on how many experts are opposed to abdication and how many are supportive.

“What’s important for us is the logical composition of each expert’s views and their thought process,” he said.

[...]

Experts have been asked to explain the pros and cons of installing a regent as a way to reduce the burden on the aged Emperor, as well as setting up a permanent system to enable every emperor to abdicate, among other related topics.

The panel will complete the three sessions on Nov. 30, with the first two largely focusing on experts on the Imperial Household system and history, and the last one on legal issues.

[...]

The other people who gave their opinions in Monday’s session were journalist Yoshiko Sakurai, former Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobuo Ishihara, Hidehiko Kasahara, a professor at Keio University, and Akira Imatani, a Teikyo University professor.
Panel divided again in second meeting to mull Emperor's possible abdication | The Japan Times
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  #252  
Old 11-19-2016, 12:26 AM
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Over 80% Back Reduction of Emperor’s Official Duties (News) | Nippon.com
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  #253  
Old 11-30-2016, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
A majority of the 16 experts summoned to a government advisory panel support the idea of enabling 82-year-old Emperor Akihito to abdicate entirely or conditionally, it has emerged as the grouping held its third and final hearing Wednesday.

But the experts, specialists in the imperial institution, history and law, were mostly opposed to the government’s reported plan to let only the current emperor to relinquish the throne via one-off legislation.

[...]

Of the 16 experts summoned, nine supported the Emperor’s abdication entirely or conditionally while the remaining seven expressed opposition. Five of the nine were supportive of the idea of a one-off legislation.

[...]

Among Wednesday’s experts, former Supreme Court Judge Itsuo Sonobe submitted a statement to the panel saying it would be “desirable” to introduce a new system in which an emperor can abdicate should he wish when he becomes old, although he noted that some conditions should be set to cope with risks such as an emperor being compelled to abdicate against his will or an emperor relinquishing the throne in an arbitrary manner.

In the meantime, Sonobe said, he supports one-off legislation applying only to Emperor Akihito.

Hidetsugu Yagi, a professor on constitutional studies at Reitaku University, expressed adamant opposition to abdication, saying it would be unconstitutional for the government to set up a new system that enables abdication in response to an emperor’s wish since the supreme law bans an emperor from having political powers.

[...]

The other experts invited to Wednesday’s meeting were also constitutional scholars — Makoto Oishi, a professor at Kyoto University’s graduate school, Kazuyuki Takahashi, professor emeritus at the University of Tokyo, and Akira Momochi, visiting professor at Kokushikan University’s graduate school.

[...]
Majority of experts support Emperor's abdication at panel hearings | The Japan Times

Emperor's wish to abdicate has the full backing of his second son : The Asahi Shimbun
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  #254  
Old 11-30-2016, 01:14 PM
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Thanks for detailed updates!
The process has been going well and much faster than I expected.
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  #255  
Old 12-01-2016, 02:36 AM
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Yes, I didn't expected this much progress at all. Abdication in 2018 may actually happen.
Emperor Akihito's friend is also speaking out and the Imperial family has multiple opportunities to keep the topic in the news. I expect Emperor Akihito and CP Naruhito to mention abdication at their birthday press conferences. Not sure about CP Masako's birthday press release or New Year's address.

Quote:
Mototsugu Akashi, 82, quoted Emperor Akihito as saying during a private conversation that he hopes to see a "system in which abdication is possible not only for myself but in the future."

[...]

Akashi, who studied with the emperor from kindergarten through senior high school at Gakushuin, said when they spoke over the phone around 10 p.m. on July 21, the emperor told him he had been thinking about abdication "for a quite long time."

Akashi said he first received a phone call from an official of the Imperial Household Agency who takes care of the emperor, saying the emperor wanted to talk to him. News of the emperor's desire to give up the post was first reported July 13.

In speaking with Akashi, the emperor also expressed concern about the confusion that could possibly ensue from the installation of a regent, referring to the experience of his father Emperor Hirohito who served as regent under Emperor Taisho, who died in 1926.

The emperor told his old schoolmate that he heard that there was a clash of opinions between the factions for the emperor and regent.

"I think regent is not a good idea," the emperor was quoted as telling Akashi.

Akashi, who has been speaking to the media frequently, said it is possible the emperor wanted to make sure his true intent was properly conveyed to the Japanese people through his old friend.
Emperor tells friend of permanent imperial abdication system hope - The Mainichi

Friend says Emperor told him of hopes for Imperial abdication system | The Japan Times

More experts back special law allowing Akihito to abdicate : The Asahi Shimbun

Majority of experts support Emperor's abdication at panel hearings | The Japan Times
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  #256  
Old 12-01-2016, 08:17 AM
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That sounds pretty realistic and now that the cat is out of the bag (timescale-wise) it'll be hard to postpone or deny an abdication now and certainly not beyond 2018.
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  #257  
Old 12-03-2016, 04:46 PM
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Quote:
[...]

The 16 experts who have been asked to offer their opinions about whether the emperor should be allowed to step down in favor of his eldest son are almost evenly divided.

[...]

Many opponents of allowing Akihito to retire said the emperor is, first of all, the high priest of Shinto in the eyes of the people. Some of them also argued that continuation of the emperor’s existence is vital for national unity, while others maintained that all he should be expected to do is to pray in the Imperial Palace.

One expert even said the very presence of the emperor is something to feel grateful for.

Some of these experts contended that the emperor’s religious ceremonies in the palace should be considered part of his official duties.

Most of these arguments deviate sharply from the majority view of the public, with some running counter to the constitutional principle of separation of religion and politics. Unsurprisingly, some members of the council raised doubts about those arguments.

[...]

Most Japanese have understood and accepted [Emperor Akihito's] thoughts and given sympathetic consideration to the emperor’s role and duties in this aging society. That’s why a majority of the public support the emperor’s abdication.

One critic described this public opinion as “sympathy and sentimentalism.” But this kind of thinking disparages the emperor’s efforts over many years and holds the public in contempt.

Arguments that are not based on widely held public perceptions about the emperor and smack of the untraditional view of the emperor as a theocratic monarch as created by the Meiji Constitution are of no help. Such arguments would only widen the gap between the imperial family and the public and destabilize the imperial system itself.

Experts who support the emperor’s abdication are divided over whether this should be made possible through a revision to the Imperial House Law to create a permanent system for the emperor’s retirement or a special measures law applied only to Akihito.

[...]
EDITORIAL: Experts against letting emperor abdicate ignore public opinion : The Asahi Shimbun
Quote:
[...]

The panel will sort out the points of the various arguments before releasing a report on the matter after the year-end and New Year's holiday period. The report should serve as the basis for public discussions on the position of the Emperor in Japan's aging society to form broad consensus.

[...]

The experts were basically split between those who are either for the Emperor's abdication or think that he is allowed to step down, and those who are either opposed to or cautious about the Emperor's possible retirement.

Those in favor of allowing the Emperor to leave the throne insisted that legal measures could allow him to step down. Meanwhile, opponents took the position that the appointment of a regent could substantially reduce the burden on the Emperor without having him retire.

The pro argument supports the current imperial system under which the Emperor appears in public and performs duties as the symbol of state and of the unity of the people, whereas opponents are of the view that the Emperor's existence is itself important, a reactionary view of Japan's monarch.

What complicates the matter further is that both pro- and anti-abdication camps are internally divided over the particulars.

Those in favor of abdication agree to allow the Emperor to retire because of his advanced age but are divided over whether a special law should be enacted to specifically open the way for Emperor Akihito to abdicate or the Imperial House Law should be amended to establish a permanent system for future emperors to step down. Some experts proposed that emperors should be allowed to retire after turning 75 or 80, but such a system would be inappropriate because health conditions and intentions differ depending on each individual emperor.

[...]

Both camps called for a reduction in the official duties the Emperor performs. Emperor Akihito has expanded his public activities beyond his acts in matters of state, such as his visits to disaster-hit areas, to establish his own image as the symbol of state and of the unity of the people. However, these experts pointed out that emperors' activities should be flexibly changed instead of fixing the scope and amount of what they do.

[...]

Another expert pointed out that if the Emperor were to be allowed to retire, it would bring forward the timing of imperial succession, which would have an impact on discussions on the future of the Imperial Family, including whether Imperial Family members of the female line should be allowed to accede to the Imperial Throne. Such discussions are indispensable in terms of stable imperial succession.

[...]
Editorial: Expert panel's views on Emperor's abdication should be basis for public consensus - The Mainichi
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  #258  
Old 12-03-2016, 06:24 PM
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Regrettably "experts" IMO often tend to go against the public opinion, because it's the public opinion, rather than what is sensible.
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  #259  
Old 12-07-2016, 04:25 AM
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Quote:
[...]

One of the members said in the meeting that the emperor should be allowed to abdicate if there are objective reasons that indicate such a move would be beneficial for the stable succession of the throne, according to Takashi Mikuriya, a panel member and professor emeritus of political science at the University of Tokyo.

Another member suggested there be a transition period where the successor and the public would be mentally prepared before a new emperor ascends, while the emperor's duties are gradually transferred to other members of the imperial family.

[...]

The panel is expected to compile a report summarizing issues concerning the emperor's possible abdication early next year as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government intends to submit a relevant bill to the regular Diet session starting in January, according to political sources.

But Mikuriya took a cautious stance, saying that although some people may hope to see the report in January, the panel "can't rush" discussions.

The advisory panel, chaired by Takashi Imai, honorary chairman of the Japan Business Federation, will hold its next meeting on Dec. 14, possibly the last of the year.

[...]

Of the 16 summoned experts, nine expressed views supportive of the emperor's abdication entirely or conditionally, while the remaining seven expressed opposition.

Among the nine pro-abdication experts, five backed the government's rumored preference for one-off legislation to enable only the present emperor to relinquish the throne.
Gov't panel member backs emperor's abdication wish - The Mainichi
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Old 12-14-2016, 04:41 AM
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Quote:
Japan’s main opposition Democratic Party has compiled a proposal for revising the Imperial House Law, seeking to establish a permanent system to allow an emperor to abdicate, informed sources said Saturday.

[...]

The DP plans to announce the proposal later this month and call on the ruling camp to hold discussions on the abdication issue at an early date, the sources said.

[...]

In consideration of the Emperor’s age, the government is hoping to form a consensus among ruling and opposition parties on the introduction of a special law to allow abdication only for the current Emperor, instead of fully revising the current legal framework for the Imperial Family, which would be more time-consuming.

[...]

Meanwhile, the DP is not considering submitting its legal revision proposal to the Diet to counter the government-proposed special law to allow Imperial abdication, according to the sources.

To avoid a confrontation between the ruling and opposition camps over the abdication issue, the DP plans to present the proposal merely as a party view on the matter, the sources said.

For the purpose of eliminating the possibility of an emperor being forced to abdicate against his will or relinquishing his title in an arbitrary manner, the DP is proposing strict procedures to judge the validity of an emperor’s wish to step down, including approval by the Imperial House Council, whose members include the prime minister and the leaders of both houses of the Diet.

[...]
DP proposes permanent system for an emperor's abdication | The Japan Times
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