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  #1281  
Old 03-17-2021, 10:00 AM
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The Japanese government should simply push for legislation to restore the four cadet branches of the Imperial family of Japan, which were until 1947 entitled to provide a successor to the Chrysanthemum throne if the main line failed to produce a male heir. That should solve the problem of the lack of male heirs.
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  #1282  
Old 03-17-2021, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by CrownPrincessJava View Post
The only reason I can see why the current Japanese government being so concerned NOW that it needs to be debated is that perhaps Princess Kako is about to announce her engagement. I believe Princess Mako will marry her beloved and if Princess Kako announces her engagement, then they will be losing two Imperial princesses in quick succession, leaving not a lot of Imperial Princesses to do the work. Princess Aiko will be 20 this year, but I suspect that the Empress will shield her away from Imperial duties as much as possible.

As stated in the past, on several occasions, this matter was not be discussed during the sitting of this government - yet here we are! Very very very intriguing! This is so much better than the soap opera that is Harry and Meghan....

You know, you might be on to something. Perhaps the Akishino's realise that in the current situation their son is their only chance on providing an Emperor and a future bloodline? Perhaps they to want to have a greater chance of having future emperors/emperesses by ensuring Kako won't have to leave the family if she marries and her children would be eligible?
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  #1283  
Old 03-17-2021, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by royal_sophietje View Post
You know, you might be on to something. Perhaps the Akishino's realise that in the current situation their son is their only chance on providing an Emperor and a future bloodline? Perhaps they to want to have a greater chance of having future emperors/emperesses by ensuring Kako won't have to leave the family if she marries and her children would be eligible?
Whatever happens the dynasty is going to eventually be resting entirely on Hisahito if nothing changes. Because most likely his sisters and cousin will get married eventually and he's the only one that can provide an heir. There's no room for him not having a son as their was in his parents generation and even with medical help that's a big risk. If it had kept getting pushed back it wouldn't have helped matters.

It will be interesting to see if there's any news about Kako in the next year. Although the current ideas put forward seem more in favour of the ex Princess being given a different title so she can still do duties but not becoming part of the succession.
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  #1284  
Old 03-17-2021, 01:42 PM
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I was just thinking out loud, I must admit. There are rumours of Akishino being quite competitve/ambitious. If that is indeed the case, I can imagine he doesn't want Hisahito to be his only bet, that after Hisahito the throne gets to another line in the family.
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  #1285  
Old 03-17-2021, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by royal_sophietje View Post
I was just thinking out loud, I must admit. There are rumours of Akishino being quite competitve/ambitious. If that is indeed the case, I can imagine he doesn't want Hisahito to be his only bet, that after Hisahito the throne gets to another line in the family.
Very true! However, if they change rules that males through the female branches can ascend the throne, would Princess Aiko's sons be higher than Princesses Mako and kiko's sons in the line of succession, even if Hisahito becomes Emperor, or does that branch die with the current Emperor?

This could be so easily solved - allow females to ascend the throne
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  #1286  
Old 03-17-2021, 07:35 PM
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The panel will likely discuss ways to alleviate the burden of official duties on a shrinking pool of imperial family members, such as delegating duties to women who have lost their royal status after marrying a commoner or allowing them to head their own branches of the imperial family.
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Originally Posted by Heavs View Post
Although the current ideas put forward seem more in favour of the ex Princess being given a different title so she can still do duties but not becoming part of the succession.
I hope that if and when changes are effected, the government will amend the membership laws instead of ignoring laws which happen to be inconvenient. Once that precedent is set, there is no going back.


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Originally Posted by CrownPrincessJava View Post
Very true! However, if they change rules that males through the female branches can ascend the throne, would Princess Aiko's sons be higher than Princesses Mako and kiko's sons in the line of succession, even if Hisahito becomes Emperor, or does that branch die with the current Emperor?
I don't see that happening. Opposition to male or female emperors through female branches is (marginally) higher in polling than opposition to female emperors through male branches.
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  #1287  
Old 03-23-2021, 02:20 PM
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Japan gov't panel kicks off discussion on imperial succession - Kyodo News
Quote:
The Japanese government's advisory panel on securing a stable line of imperial succession held its first meeting on Tuesday, with discussions over the coming months set to focus on whether the country should break with tradition and allow female members of the emperor's family to ascend the throne.

The six-member panel will hear from experts in various fields and is aiming to reach a conclusion by this fall, at which point it will present its findings to parliament.

"The topic you are discussing is an important issue concerning the nation's basis," Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said at the start of the meeting. "I hope you will hear a range of views and sort them in a way that is easy to understand."

[...]

The panel agreed to ask experts about 10 key points including their positions on including female or matrilineal imperial members in the line of succession, the current rule requiring women marrying commoners to abandon their imperial status, and adoption of male heirs from former branches of the imperial family.

According to a government official, a total of about 20 experts will be called upon to give their views.

[...]

Former Keio University President Atsushi Seike was chosen to chair the panel by the other members, which include Tetsuro Tomita, chairman of East Japan Railway Co., and Mayumi Ohashi, a law professor at Sophia University.
Experts start discussing Imperial succession | NHK WORLD-JAPAN News
Quote:
[...]

Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide told them that the government set up the panel based on a supplementary Diet committee resolution attached to a 2017 law that enabled then Emperor Akihito to abdicate.

Suga said their discussion would entail extremely important matters related to the fundamental underpinnings of the nation.

He asked them to lay out various views in an easy-to-understand manner.

[...]

Their deliberations will focus on the possibility of allowing descendants of the female line of the Imperial lineage to ascend the Imperial throne. Other ideas to be examined include allowing female members of the Imperial family to take part in some Imperial family activities after marrying a commoner and losing their status as members of the Imperial family.

[...]

The panel's next meeting is scheduled for April 8.
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  #1288  
Old 03-23-2021, 02:46 PM
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I like that instruction:

"to lay out various views in an easy-to-understand manner."
= A clear no nonsense recommendation.

It'll be interesting to read the report in six months.
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  #1289  
Old 03-23-2021, 02:51 PM
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Could it be that there is still a possibility that Aiko will succeed her father?
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  #1290  
Old 03-23-2021, 05:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muhler View Post

I like that instruction:

"to lay out various views in an easy-to-understand manner."
= A clear no nonsense recommendation.

It'll be interesting to read the report in six months.
Haha. Add another 6 months or longer. Earlier reports vary between 1 year of discussions to "no timeline for a conclusion."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blog Real View Post
Could it be that there is still a possibility that Aiko will succeed her father?
I doubt it. At best, the panel may recommend allowing princesses to work as special public servants after marriage. I expect they will adhere to the government's stance of male-only succession or postpone the matter to see if Prince Hisahito has sons or not.

Honestly, how can any panel reach an unbiased conclusion when the LDP government has stated its position on the issue?
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  #1291  
Old 03-23-2021, 05:48 PM
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Oh, boy (girl), here we go...

But hasn't this already been debated fairly recently? ...so in theory, they should not have to start from scratch with the extensive deliberations? Or am I wrong?
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  #1292  
Old 03-24-2021, 01:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Blog Real View Post
Could it be that there is still a possibility that Aiko will succeed her father?

Not likely. Even if panel and then government decide change agnatic succession to more equal succession (most probable male preference), Aiko hardly has any chances to ascend to Crysanthemum throne. Hisahito would be still after his uncle and father. These line of successions are not usually changed retroactively. So if Aiko is added to line of succession she is after Hisahito.
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  #1293  
Old 03-24-2021, 01:18 PM
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Younger, more diverse panel tackles imperial succession issue : The Asahi Shimbun
Quote:
[...]

While the panel sessions will be held behind closed doors, a summary of the minutes will be released about two weeks after a session without identifying who made the remarks.

The panel is expected to hear from experts on the imperial household and Japanese history on creating an imperial succession system that allows for stable continuance of the imperial system.

[...]

After the first session, Seike said his panel would refer to the hearings held in 2016 and 2017 by a separate panel that had been set up to consider what should be done after then Emperor Akihito let it be known that he wanted to abdicate in favor of his eldest son, Naruhito, the current emperor.

Those sessions would be referred to in deciding who to call for expert testimony this time around.

While the present order of imperial succession will not be changed, among the topics to be covered include the possibility of having a female emperor and whether to allow a male emperor whose only tie to the imperial family is through his mother.

The panel will also discuss allowing female imperial family members to remain in the household even after marriage to a commoner and whether to let male members of families that left the imperial household in the past set up a new imperial family as long as their fathers had blood ties to past emperors.

Three panel members are in their 40s, making them younger than those selected for the panel that looked into Akihito's abdication. The panel also has gender parity.

“What is important is to bring together members who hold feelings of the average Japanese citizen," a high-ranking official in the prime minister’s office said about the panel selection. "We felt it would be better to have members who did not have preconceived notions about the imperial household structure and imperial succession.”

Another high-ranking official added that the experts to be called to the hearings will also tend “to be younger because what is to be discussed relates to the future of Japan.”

At the first session, members asked that more women be called to provide expert testimony.

[...]
Editorial: Answer to imperial succession problem must be based on Japan's modern values - The Mainichi
Quote:
[...]

Behind this procrastination was the vehement opposition to allowing female emperors or emperors from the maternal line -- whose father is not related to an emperor -- that is so deeply rooted among conservatives, who formed the Abe administration's main support base.

The expert committee that has been established under the administration of Abe's successor Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga has six members, two of whom were also on the committee set up to debate now Emperor Emeritus Akihito's abdication. There are some figures raising questions over the closeness between the administration and the committee, and it is indeed very important that the members be able to talk over the succession issue without worrying about the Suga administration's opinions.

According to multiple public opinion polls, support for female emperors or female-line emperors currently hovers around 70%. The expert committee should deepen its discussions on such options with present public attitudes in mind.

One proposal circulating in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) is to restore the royal status in men of princely lineages excised from the Imperial Household after World War II. However, it would likely be impossible to gain public understanding for bringing these men back into the line of succession after more than 70 years as regular citizens unschooled in the ways and duties of the Imperial Household.

[...]

In December last year, House of Representatives Speaker Tadamori Oshima stated, "It would be good if the Suga administration could produce an answer to this (the imperial succession) question that could win the public's understanding and sympathy." To make that happen, discussions must be above politics.

Prime Minister Suga should be aware of the heavy responsibility now on his shoulders, and reach a conclusion through broad public debate that can win the support of the Japanese people.
The panel barely started and the government is already prepared to postpone any conclusions due to the House of Representatives' election in the autumn. The frequency of panel sessions is likely to slow down. All experts were appointed outside of specialty in the Imperial system, emphasizing neutrality but also dilutes any conclusions. The panel's eventual report does not require conclusions.

Source: Jiji

Panelists

Mayumi Ohashi, Sophia University, professor of law, teaching General Environmental Law, Administrative Relief Law classes
Atsushi Seike*, former president of Keio University and now head of Promotion and Mutual Aid Corp. for Private Schools of Japan
Tetsuro Tomita, East Japan Railway Co. chairman

Yuri Nakae, actress and author
Yuichi Hosoya, Keio University, professor of international politics. (more info at https://keio.academia.edu/YuichiHosoya/CurriculumVitae)
Midori Miyazaki*, Chiba University of Commerce

* Atsushi Seike and Midori Miyazaki were on the 2016 panel for abdication

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  #1294  
Old 03-24-2021, 02:18 PM
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Hmm, can we really hope that this panel will actually look serious into the possibility of women ascending the throne?

Wonder if that was the intention?

The odds are 27:1 that a new panel will be appointed once this panel has presented it's report...

Or perhaps PM Suga is a closet-feminist?
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  #1295  
Old 04-07-2021, 02:00 PM
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FOCUS: Experts see Suga gov't unlikely to approve female monarch - Kyodo News
Quote:
[...]

The scholars doubt Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga will exert leadership in achieving drastic changes to the current patrilineal male-only imperial succession rule despite a shrinking number of heirs, citing his weak political base, during separate interviews with Kyodo News held recently.

The three academics, who have been involved in past government debate on the future of the imperial family, pointed out that a wide gap will not be narrowed soon between those in favor of women ascending the throne or emperors descending from the maternal line and those against the idea.

[...]

Takashi Mikuriya, 69, professor emeritus of political science at the University of Tokyo, said although many people in Japan believe allowing reigning empresses or emperors from the maternal line will be necessary to secure stable succession, conservatives against such a stance claim the issue "should not be resolved by majority vote."

"I doubt whether Prime Minister Suga has a strong political base to override" resistance from the conservatives, he said.

[...]

Hidehiko Kasahara, 64, a Keio University professor specialized in the history of Japanese politics, blamed Suga's predecessor Shinzo Abe for not addressing the issue despite becoming Japan's longest-serving prime minister in history.

[...]

The current Imperial House Law bans adoption into the royal family. Although it has not gained much public support, some experts call for adopting into the imperial family some male patrilineal descendants of former branches of the imperial family who abandoned their status in 1947.

Akira Momochi, 74, specially appointed professor of politics at Kokushikan University, is among those experts.

As the unbroken patrilineal succession in the world's oldest monarchy has been realized thanks to "grueling efforts of ancestors," the current rule should be maintained and the number of successor candidates should be increased by giving imperial status to male descendants of former branch members, Momochi said.

He said the former branches of the imperial family historically existed to ensure male heirs in the event of a succession crisis, while those families continue to have a close relationship with the current royal family members.

As for an idea of enabling female members of the imperial family to establish their own branches even after marriage to commoners so they can continue to engage in official duties, Kasahara said now is not the right time to discuss the matter.

[...]

Kasahara said the current imperial succession rule that bars women from ascending the throne "has nothing to do with gender discrimination" and that eligibility for successors should be expanded to include female descendants from the male line.

However, Mikuriya acknowledged it is "high time" to abandon the argument that the long-held tradition of the imperial family is above the current global trend of promoting gender equality.

"The imperial family will cease to exist if it is ignored by the public. Therefore, it has no choice but to go along with the global tide (on gender equality) if it is to continue to gain public support," he said.
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  #1296  
Old 04-07-2021, 02:28 PM
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That's unusually clear talk!

And I think they are spot on.
I think the three scholars feel that the newly appointed committee is on a fools errand. And say so pretty much openly.

Is there any chance that the Japanese people see this as important enough to put public pressure on the government to seriously consider female emperors?
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  #1297  
Old 04-07-2021, 09:45 PM
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As for an idea of enabling female members of the imperial family to establish their own branches even after marriage to commoners so they can continue to engage in official duties, Kasahara said now is not the right time to discuss the matter.

With a planned marriage between Crown Prince Fumihito's eldest daughter Princess Mako, 29, and her university boyfriend Kei Komuro, 29, failing to get significant public support due to a money scandal involving Komuro's mother, Kasahara said a "negative conclusion" could be drawn on the matter.

Mikuriya also said the controversial marriage plan has "cast a shadow" on debate on the establishment of female branches. "People have been discussing the male partners' position and their treatment within the imperial family. It will become a bottleneck" in the current government panel discussions, he added.
I agree with professors Kasahara and Mikuriya. Sadly, most find it difficult to separate debates over rules from the individuals who will be affected. (Recall how the discussions on female monarchs sharing their rank with their consorts in Denmark became inseparable from discussion of Prince Henrik, or how the discussion on downsizing the British royal family became inseparable from discussion of the Sussexes.)

Unless Kei is able to rehabilitate his image with the public, reform proposals might have better odds to succeed if they are introduced after Mako has married him and exited the imperial family, making it clear that any reforms would not lead to a Prince Kei.



Quote:
Referring to a House of Representatives election that must be held by October, when the current members' term expires, Mikuriya said, "I recommend we wait for half a year until a government with a strong political foundation will launch a full-fledged study" on ways to ensure stable imperial succession.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prisma View Post
The panel barely started and the government is already prepared to postpone any conclusions due to the House of Representatives' election in the autumn. The frequency of panel sessions is likely to slow down. [...]
Good points. Indeed, what reason is there not to postpone until autumn? The discussions may be overdue, but after four years of procrastination I can't imagine it would be more burdensome to delay for another few months to a year. Particularly when it seems to be the only chance to obtain a government that possesses the credibility and political capital necessary for serious discussions on the monarchy.


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Originally Posted by Prisma View Post
Honestly, how can any panel reach an unbiased conclusion when the LDP government has stated its position on the issue?
I fully agree, although to be fair to the current government, that appears to be the case to some extent for every imperial panel in recent times (female succession in 2004, female branches in 2011, and abdication in 2016). Based on the media coverage, the fundamental conclusions of those panels were never in doubt in the eyes of observers.


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Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
Is there any chance that the Japanese people see this as important enough to put public pressure on the government to seriously consider female emperors?
Unless something tragic happens to Prince Hisahito, which would create urgency, I can't envision this happening in the near future. If the majority of the public strongly felt that females and males should be treated equally, I think there would already have been pressure and the Imperial House Law would already have been amended.
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  #1298  
Old 04-07-2021, 11:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
That's unusually clear talk!

And I think they are spot on.
I think the three scholars feel that the newly appointed committee is on a fools errand. And say so pretty much openly.

Is there any chance that the Japanese people see this as important enough to put public pressure on the government to seriously consider female emperors?
There is a greater chance that one or more of the former Cadet branches will be restored to the line of sucession (regardless of what the public or even the members themselves think about it)...

As i see it, its a much greater chance that the next Thai monarch is a female than the next Japanese monarch..
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  #1299  
Old 04-07-2021, 11:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Tatiana Maria View Post
I agree with professors Kasahara and Mikuriya. Sadly, most find it difficult to separate debates over rules from the individuals who will be affected. (Recall how the discussions on female monarchs sharing their rank with their consorts in Denmark became inseparable from discussion of Prince Henrik, or how the discussion on downsizing the British royal family became inseparable from discussion of the Sussexes.)

Unless Kei is able to rehabilitate his image with the public, reform proposals might have better odds to succeed if they are introduced after Mako has married him and exited the imperial family, making it clear that any reforms would not lead to a Prince Kei.

(...)

Unless something tragic happens to Prince Hisahito, which would create urgency, I can't envision this happening in the near future. If the majority of the public strongly felt that females and males should be treated equally, I think there would already have been pressure and the Imperial House Law would already have been amended.
Male social climber is still a thing in Japan, marrying a daughter of a prominent figure can be the fastest route to achive a position. Want to be a director of a hospital? Marry the daughter of the previous director. Need a push on your political career? Marry a daughter of known politician. Seriously, you can find more men becoming his father-in-law successor than a woman following her father's footstep, eg daugter of a doctor is more likely to be a wife of a doctor than becoming a doctor herself, it's her husband who will succeed her father's clinic.

There's even one happened within the Imperial family. Dōkyō was said to be the lover of Kōken-tennō. Whether it's true or not, he was promoted rapidly to be Grand Minister and later became Hōō due to their closeness. At one point, he even had tried to ascend the throne by himself. His fall to power happened because the Empress' death.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hans-Rickard View Post
There is a greater chance that one or more of the former Cadet branches will be restored to the line of sucession (regardless of what the public or even the members themselves think about it)...

As i see it, its a much greater chance that the next Thai monarch is a female than the next Japanese monarch..
Agree.
Though more than restoring the former cadet branch fully, adopting male heir from the former cadet branch is more likely (that's how it's been done in the past).
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  #1300  
Old 04-08-2021, 02:26 PM
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I find the concept of male social climbing interesting.

Surely the women in question know they are courted for their position, rather than for love. I.e. it will be a marriage of convenience.
Do they, so to speak, sell themselves dearly?
Or do they take one for the family? I.e. allowing their father to basically adopt a suitable son-in-law? - After all in Japanese culture you are indebted to your parents.
What is the balance in such a marriage?
The husband is indebted to his wife, for his new position. Does that mean that he will be subservient to his wife? Or will he take the traditional position of the Japanese husband in being the head of the family?
In what happens if she divorce him?

And can we expect Princess Aiko, to be courted by a social climber?
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