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Japan's Political System

Political System of Japan's Political SystemAfter the constitution of 1947, Japan is a unified state and parliamentary- democratic constitutional imperial empire. The emperor played a significant political role in the past, but now has primarily ceremonial functions. The real power lies with Parliament (Kokkai).

Parliament has two chambers; the most important is the House of Representatives (Shugi-in), with 480 members. 300 of these are chosen by majority choice in individual circles, the other 180 by ratio choices in multi-person circles; all elected for four years. The advisory house (Sangi-in) has 242 members (reduced from 247 in 2004) and is elected for six years. It is renewed by half every three years, and so that 48 of the seats at each election round are distributed according to ratio choices. The voting age of 20 is higher than in most other countries.

Both legislative and budget proposals are dealt with by both chambers. In the event of disagreement, however, the House of Representatives ultimately has the decisive word. The constitution requires 2/3 majority in both chambers and approval in a subsequent referendum. The Prime Minister starts from Parliament by adopting a resolution on it. The Prime Minister appoints the other ministers, half must be elected to the National Assembly.

Japan has a multi-party system, but with one party, the Liberal Democrat, as the dominant. See ABBREVIATIONFINDER for how JA can stand for Japan. It has had power for almost the entire post-war period. Most Japanese parties are elite parties, not member parties. They are also loose and partly divided into semi-official fractions. People and personal rivalry play a significant role in Japanese politics.

Administratively

Administratively, Japan is divided into 47 prefectures (ken) and these again into smaller, local units, such as cities (shi) and villages (son). The capital, Tokyo, which was previously one urban municipality, was merged in 1943 with the surrounding municipalities into a metropolitan region, which from 1947 is divided into 23 special districts (tokubetsu-ku). The prefectures are led by an elected governor and representative assemblies, the smaller local units of mayors and representative assemblies. The congregations are elected by the people.

Judiciary

After Japan was opened to foreign influence in the 19th century, the country has probably more than any other state outside the European cultural circle, implicitly introduced Western law; originally French and German, after the Second World War Anglo-American.

The highest court in the judiciary is the Supreme Court, with a Justice and 14 judges. Supreme Court deals with appeals (jokuko) and appeals (kokoku). It can also test the constitutional compatibility of laws. The Supreme Court works through the large bench (all judges present) or one of three small benches (five judges present). The next paragraph includes eight court judges, usually set with three judges. They handle appeals from subordinate courts and, in the first instance, cases of high treason (five judges). District and family courts are set with one to three judges, depending on the significance of the case. Minor cases are handled by sole judges at summary (local) courts. The judges of the lower courts are appointed, by a recommendation from the Supreme Court, by the government for ten years, with the possibility of reappointment. Supreme Court judges are appointed by the government. The Justice is appointed by the Emperor on the recommendation of the Government.

The independence of the courts is guaranteed by the Constitution. Lay people participate to a large extent in the administration of justice. as members of conciliation boards. The judicial system is generally used less in Japan, as in China, than in Western countries. Settlements are often preferred, for traditional and religious reasons.

Political System of Japan

Social structure

The very basic features of the Japanese social structure can be formulated as collectivism and verticality - at least until very recently. Collectivism is expressed in the famous Japanese group mentality; A solidarity with family, company, company, institute, ministry and with Japan itself. A Japanese perceives himself as an outside representative group, and as part of a "corpus mysticum" within the group. The goal of a discussion is to reach agreement. This is achieved through a long and complicated process - seen from the west - where no one goes too far in order not to break the group solidarity and not to get into a position where it becomes difficult to comply with the later decision. This gives a tremendous strength to the group and to the individual who is involved and who can trust that the group members will support and help in the difficult situations of life.

Verticality is expressed in a strong caste rather than class divide, and in that the Japanese seem to move much more in vertical than horizontal conditions. During the Tokugawa period, there were four groups under the feudal lords: shi (also called samurai, warrior, lava); no (farmers); cow (craftsmen) and sho (grocers). This is the same division as in China, but they were called shik, nung, kung, shang. The merchants have risen from a status who were not so different from Jews and Gypsies in Europe; The peasants have been treated better than in Europe, not to mention India, the craftsmen have become workers and the samurai intellectuals. But the very foundation of modern Japanese caste society is no longer birth, but education. Highest are those who manage to enter the two top universities: Tokyo Daigakku and Kyoto Paigakku. They are the new nobility. Next, a number of universities follow in strict order, but largely with the state - plus some private - elite universities and the rest in the second row. Japanese society today is organized around the groups trained at these universities. Entering an elite university is therefore the most important goal of a young person's life. The shoots take place in March-April, which are the months where most happen suicide.

If you combine verticality with collectivism and you get a society that will do with great energy what management believes it should do. If the leadership wants war, there will be war; If management wants peace, there will be peace. The same Japanese who glowingly sacrificed their lives in the fight against the North Americans as kamikaze fliers and crashed with planes against the warships, became the quietest and kindest people any occupying power could wish for. When they were no longer at war, management perceived all actions - even the most screaming economic aggression towards Southeast Asian countries - as "peace". The demise of forests in Malaysia, of islands in Indonesia, the exploitation of workers suffering in inhumane conditions in South Korea in Japanese-owned firms is largely outside the Japanese community debate - as it is in the majority of capitalist Western Europe and North America.

Verticality is a power-verticality more than privilege-verticality. Apart from restaurant visits etc. at the company's expense and black car with lace curtains and driver with white gloves, there is not much difference between a Japanese director and a skilled worker. At work, they go e.g. one dressed and eager to eat in the same canteen. But the concentration of power is enormous - far greater than in the West. Wage levels are a poor indicator of living standards, as a Japanese company takes in far more of its employees than Western firms do. For example. they often arrange marriages, trips, lunches, provide very cheap apartments, have resorts etc. On the other hand, it is a prerequisite that you stay in the company/university/ ministry etc. you once started in. Leaving it is treason against all those who have taken care of one. It is also uneconomical: Wages increase much more strongly with seniority than in the West. It is not calculated by year of examination, but by employment in the company. You are also pretty much guaranteed courage unemployment: The obligation to retain a worker is considered absolute when he or she is first employed.

 

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