US Policy and Politics 米国の制度と政治

謎めいた開票作業を経て、ジョー・バイデン氏が勝利宣言を行いました。といってもトランプ大統領が複数の州で結果をめぐって提訴しているので、真の勝者は連邦最高裁が決めることになるのですが。ともあれ、どちらが次の大統領になったとしても、日米合同委員会のトップである第5空軍司令官に政治を押さえられている日本としては、大きな影響が出てきます。

日本人にとって一番の関心事は国防でしょう。周辺の国がここ数年脅威をもたらしている中、強固な日米同盟によって致命的な状態に陥らずに済んでいるわけで、これを適切に維持することが日本の生き残りの鍵となるわけです。アメリカの助けなく自力で生きることは不可能な国ですから。

バイデン氏は中国と強い結びつきがあると言われています。マイク・ペンス副大統領は副大統領討論会で「ジョー・バイデンはこれまで何十年もの間、中国共産党の応援者だ」といっていました。またバイデン氏の息子のハンター・バイデン氏は中国やウクライナから金銭を受け取ったとも言われています。これらの事実から、彼らが向こう4年間の東アジアの平和を危険にさらすのではないかと心配する日本人が多くいます。

「バイデンは中国と取引をして尖閣諸島を中国に渡すのでは?」と心配する日本人もいます。「中国や北朝鮮が攻めてきても、アメリカは知らん顔をするかもしれない」

ともあれ、ひとたびジョー・バイデン氏が次の米国大統領になったときは、日本のただ一つの取る道は、すぐにワシントンに飛び、日米同盟を堅持してインド太平洋地域の平和を守るように働きかけることでしょう。それをするのが菅総理の重要なミッションと思います。

Joe Biden made a victory speech as the President-elect today after mysterious ballot-counting processes. However, the Supreme Court of the United States will decide who the real winner is because President Donald Trump is filing cases to courts of several States on the results. No matter which will be the next President of the United States, his policies will affect Japan a great deal because the Fifth Air Force Commander, the head of the US-Japan Joint Committee, actually controls Japan’s politics.

One of the significant concerns for the Japanese is the homeland security of our nation. Countries around Japan have repeatedly been threatening it for years, and the firm alliance between the United States and Japan has prevented it from falling into a deadly situation. Proper maintaining of the coalition between the two countries is the key for Japan to survive because it can’t stand alone without America’s help.

Some say that the new President-elect has strong ties with China, as Mike Pence said in the vice-presidential debate, “Joe Biden has been a cheerleader for communist China over the last several decades.” Others say that his son, Hunter Biden, received money from China and Ukraine. These facts make many Japanese people anxious that they may jeopardize East Asia’s peace in the next four years.

“Is Joe Biden going to make a deal with China to give the Senkaku Islands to it?” some Japanese are anxious. “Even if China or North Korea attacks Japan, America may pay no attention to it.”

Once Joe Biden becomes the next POTUS, Japan’s only option is to fly to Washington immediately to ask him to maintain the strong relationship between the United States and Japan to secure the US Forces Japan for keeping the peace in the Indo-Pacific region. To do it is Prime Minister Suga’s critical mission.

令和二年は悪夢で始まったようです。正確に言うと年のはじめには、2ヶ月後にこうなってるなどと誰も予測し得なかったのです。言うまでもなく、いま世界全体が戦っているもの、つまりコロナウイルスの話です。

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The second year of the Reiwa period began with a nightmare. More precisely, at the beginning of the year, nobody could predict what would be going on just two months later. I am talking about what the entire world is fighting against—COVID-19.

The coronavirus outbreak has been an urgent global issue. It was just the case of people in a limited area of a particular country, or poor, rich travelers within a trapped gorgeous cruise ship in February. Only a few weeks later, however, it became the case relevant in most parts of the world. Now the situation is changing day by day. For days, thousands of people around the world have been newly hospitalized due to this disease. More than 10,000 patients have died from it in China, Japan, Iran, Italy, Spain, Germany, France, the United States, and more.

The World Health Organization declared a pandemic. Lockdown is underway in many cities and even nationwide in some countries. Going out for non-essential reasons is banned or discouraged. People are forced to stay home and keep six feet away from others so as not to be six feet under.

The lockdown has had a massive impact on the world economy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by around 1,000 points this month with circuit breakers taking effect many times. The share price of Boeing has become less than a third for weeks. This financial crisis is even worse than those in the great depression in 1929.

That is true with Japan. Here in Tokyo, the governor stated that lockdown in Tokyo is likely because patients tested positive are increasing every day by more than the number of cases a day before. She requested Tokyoites for being home this weekend except for essential business.

People in Japan look afraid of a state of emergency being declared and lockdown being issued. I hate to say that, but I’m sure that these will be near. I think lockdown orders will be released in weeks or even in days because we see other civilized countries being already like this.

Lockdown being inevitable, how should we do? Most people will be forced to stay away from their workplaces, such as offices, farms, fishing grounds, milk plants, and factories. Then it is likely to run short of various things needed for daily life. As a result, the production of foods and groceries will be severely restricted.

Once supply cease, panic buying is likely to take place. This action must be blamed as antisocial behavior since not all households have enough money or means to get what they need. It will be difficult to supply daily necessities if panic buying occurs, because the distribution system will be burdened more than usual, and the distribution of domestic inventory will be unfair. Participating in such panic buying is nothing but not only exposing your low awareness of social solidarity, that is, lack of knowledge that society will not be established if we do our own things, but also proving that you have neglected to be prepared and save in case of an emergency.

We have no choice but to secure the needed supplies for the time being before lockdown takes effect. It would help us a lot to find out what people in countries where lockdown is already in place are doing.

This experience gives us the following important suggestions and lessons: the fact that even the most rights-sensitive liberal nations can easily and quickly control individual’s rights and freedom before the impending crisis. It means that, once an emergency happens, the rights of individuals are insignificant and vulnerable.

What is happening in front of us now seems like a dry run exercise for the third world war. I think it is likely to occur in the coming decades because it is a very similar situation where a big earthquake occurred in 1923, the world financial crisis in 1929, and WWII 12 years later. Likewise, the big earthquake and tsunami happened in 2011, and the economic crisis derived from the coronavirus epidemic eight years later. Now the world is divided. Each country is isolated and closing its borders. How many years is left for us to see those countries to collide?

The time is right to be prepared for in the future. Divide your assets into some pieces and save them in different countries. If possible, have multiple places to live and jobs in two or more countries. Having as many life options as possible will save you in this volatile future with many uncertainties.

Visiting US military bases is fun for me. The US Army, US Navy, US Air Force and US Marine Corps use 75 facilities within Japan and Okinawa, 51 of which are dedicated and the rest 24 shared with Japan Self Defense Force. Though those facilities are usually closed to civilians, they are open to residents around them once or twice a year, and you can get inside the military places during these festivals.

Visiting those facilities is one of the few occasions to get in touch with the United States. You can eat American-made hamburgers, hot dogs, steaks, turkey legs, and other American foods. You can pay foods, sodas, beer, sweets, and souvenirs with US dollars. You can talk to Americans in English. And, you can find out how average Americans live their daily life. What kind of groceries do they buy? What kind of foods do they eat? What kind of newspapers do they read? What kind of school do they make their children attend? You can catch a glimpse of those things without flying more than 12 hours to get to mainland America.

I have visited US bases and facilities in Japan and Okinawa for more than 15 years. With respect to what I have experienced, I’m grading each of these out of 5 by categories of accessibility, smoothness of entry and exit, freedom of movement, and availability of on-base building. 5 is the most excellent, and 0 the worst.

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Today is one of unforgettable days in world history. Nine years ago the terrorist attacks changed not only America but everything in the world. Since that day freedom of our activities in the U.S. and other countries including Japan has been strictly limited.

Amateur 9/11 Footages
I hope political leaders of the world to take actions altogether to bring back peace. And I hope them to let us do anything we want, go anywhere with less restrictions, save and invest money in banks anywhere, and buy anything in any stores worldwide.

Congratulations, Barack, on your inauguration to become a new US President today, and on having a chance to create a new, powerful, cheerful and great era for the United States, and for the rest of the world!

Barack, I want you to make the best efforts to create a more peaceful country not only for American citizens but also for the people of the other countries. I urge you to open the door so that we have easier access to the United States and so that foreigners who love America can have more chances to study at a school or to get a job there. And, as a netizen, I also hope you to make the internet world as free, exciting, and open to many people, Americans or foreign people, as in the era of Bill Clinton.

May America keep being good friends with Japan, one of the strong allied countries.

はたして日本の国益にどれだけなるのかどうか。民主党政権は歴史的に日本に冷たいですからね。。。1996年のクリントン訪中のときみたいに、「ジャパン・パッシング」が再来しなければいいんですが。。。ブッシュは曲がりなりにも中韓ににらみをきかせてて日本の首相とも仲良くやってたんですが、オバマ政権は果たして北朝鮮の拉致被害者救出に協力的になってくれるでしょうか。。。

まあどっちに転んでも日本はアメリカなしでは生きていけないわけで、これまで通り仲良しこよしでやっていくしかないわけですが。。。無視だけはされないようにしないと、ね。