Basic Policies for Government (Policy Magna Carta)
We will take the idea of "coexistence" as our philosophy for building a new nation, and transform Japan into a "fair nation" that is logical in every way. In order to achieve this, we will aim for each Japanese person to become self-reliant and moreover to become self-reliant as a nation.
We will promote the realisation of a free, transparent and open economy and society in order to increase the social vitality of our nation, and to maintain a mature economy and society. Central government will limit direct intervention and control of the market to the minimum and concentrate on creating and implementing fair regulations.
At the same time, we believe that establishing a safety net that ensures social stability is an important prerequisite for free competition. Consolidating this safety net in order to eliminate inequalities and building a society in which a variety of people can live together and everyone can lead safe and secure lives is the most important challenge for DPJ politics.
As a result of the unprincipled and irresponsible politics practised over many years, Japan is facing a serious crisis.ﾂ? We will rebuild Japan from her foundations, and establish new structures and new rules, to create a basic structure that will enable her to continue on in peace and stability into the 21st century. As a first step, in order to make Japan into a truly democratic nation state, we will break down the ever increasing bureaucratic control of politics, establish a parliamentary democracy in which politicians, as the representatives of our sovereigns the people, determine and implement politics of their own volition, and furthermore, realise a "decentralised nation" through sweeping reforms. Moreover, we will further financial strengthening by dismantling the Kasumigaseki bureaucracy and thoroughly eradicating wasteful use of tax money, realising responsible politics that do not force future generations to bear an excessive burden.
Our administration will engage in stable and trustworthy politics both domestically and internationally, and this document sets forth the basic direction of these policies.
- Start "Nation-building" with "People-building"
- Enact a Japanese Education Basic Law
We will enact a "Japanese Education Basic Law" and carry out radical reform of education, fundamentally changing the current situation, which can be described as "the devastation of education", and enabling children to be rich in feeling and creativity, to possess a spirit of "coexistence", "independence/autonomy" and "public interest", and to obtain the basic academic skills and a fundamental social education.
- Make responsibility for education transparent
- 竭?In place of the current system, which is vague as to where the responsibility for education lies, we will create an education system that makes clear the responsibility of central government and the role of local authorities.
- 竭｡The central government will bear ultimate responsibility for guaranteeing the "right to learn", and have financial responsibility for compulsory education.
- 竭｢We will abolish the current education board system and create a system under which the head of each local authority has responsibility for educational administration. Curriculums and hands-on management by schools will be carried out democratically under the authority of the head of the each local authority and local authorities will be free to exercise their own creativity.
- 竭｣Schools will be independently and autonomously administered by a board of governors consisting of parents, local residents, school representatives and education experts.
- Enhance the quality and numbers of teaching staff
- 竭?We will aim to ensure sufficient staff and to enhance training and study in order that teachers can fulfil their ultimate mission, and discharge their duties.
- 竭｡The state will bear responsibility for ensuring teachers are qualified, and receive respect for their position, along with appropriate remuneration.
- 竭｢By simplifying the system of educational administration and respecting the autonomy of the classroom, we will free teachers from troublesome paperwork and create an environment where they can focus on education.
- Enhance the education budget, which is investment in our nation窶冱 future
We will raise Japan窶冱 public spending on education, currently strikingly low in comparison with other developed nations (less than 3% of GDP), targeting a figure that is more than the average spending among developed nations(5% of GDP or more).
- Reduce the burden on parents by making education free
- 竭?We will ensure that public high schools accept all applicants and offer free education.
- 竭｡We will further the development of free pre-schooling for 5-year olds, and gradually increase the scope of free pre-schooling.
- Unify child-care systems
We will unify the various child-care systems such as kindergartens and nurseries.
- Guarantee access to higher education
We will undertake the gradual expansion of free higher education as stipulated by international covenants on human rights and implement a dramatic expansion of the scholarship system and other connected systems so that all Japanese, regardless of their circumstances of birth, can have access to higher education that corresponds to their wishes and abilities.
- Implement study of social standards
In order that children can learn about society through exchanges with adults and group activities, and acquire social standards and education as well as self-reliance, each Saturday will be a day on which sports, experience of nature and outdoor activities, volunteer activities, and activities that lead to the continuation of traditional culture are undertaken with the cooperation of local organizations and corporations under the autonomous control of each school.
- Create Structures to Eliminate Inequalities and Enable People to Help Each Other
- Rejuvenate the family and support childrearing
We will aim to rejuvenate the family, which is the basic unit of society.
Based on the principle of moving "from exemptions to allowances", we will abolish the various personal exemptions and create a "dependent parent allowance" and a "child allowance". We will promote wide-ranging policies such as the expansion of day care, consolidation of pediatric care, and assistance with childcare, in order to create a society in which it is possible to give birth to children without anxiety, and bring them up while working.
- Employment safety net
The unfettered increase in irregular employment does not simply invite the bipolarization and destabilization of society, but is also not of long-term benefit to corporations. Therefore, we will promote the conversion from irregular to regular employment, as much as possible, for those who desire it.
We will establish the principle of "equal pay for equal work" for workers.
We will re-evaluate life-time employment, recognizing it as an important and appropriate safety net for our nation, and make long-term stable employment the basis of employment law.
While introducing a framework of totally free competition for management-level posts in both public and private sectors, we will make life-time employment a rule for workers in non-management positions.
We will create a framework that will encourage the re-employment of those who have left their jobs to carry out child-rearing or care-giving.
- Sweeping social security reform and transformation of consumption tax into a welfare tax
We will implement sweeping reform of the social security system.
We will establish the principle that consumption tax will not be used for any purpose other than welfare, and by this means, create a fair and stable social security system and a framework which clearly indicates the tax burden and uses of the tax to the public. We will maintain the current consumption tax rate of 5% and allot the entire amount of tax revenue as pension resources (for the basis portion of the pension).
- Pension reform
We will carry out sweeping reform of the pension system, rebuild the universal national pension system, now in a state of crisis, and maintain it into the future. To achieve this, we will affirm the following principles and speedily implement concrete system planning.
- 竭?We will unify all of the various pension schemes, without exemption.
- 竭｡The basic (minimum guaranteed) portion of the pension will be funded entirely from tax revenues, with payments to those in high income brackets limited so that they will not receive part or all of their basic pension.
- 竭｢We will maintain contributions and payments for the income comparative portion of the pension at current levels.
- 竭｣We will allocate all consumption tax revenues as pension funding (for the basic portion of the pension).
Furthermore, we will undertake a review of public pension exemptions for those receiving pensions, to ensure that the total burden of tax and pension premiums does not become too much.
- Establish medical and nursing care security and "lifelong employment"
We will carry out thorough medical reforms, from the perspective of patients, such as a strengthening of cancer measures that aims to eliminate "cancer refugees", and create a system in which people can receive the most appropriate medical care whatever region they live in.
The most important thing for seniors is that they can enjoy healthy and fulfilling lives. From this perspective, we will guarantee "life-long employment" for those who wish to work. As a result of such policies we will be able to reduce the medical costs for seniors and achieve a breakthrough in medical problems facing seniors.
By providing efficient nursing care services and enhancing public assistance, we will put a stop to the increase in the amount of nursing care fees borne by the individual.
We will encourage the establishment of an income guarantee system, including employment promotion, and aim for the true independence of the disabled.
- Build Peace Ourselves
-Diplomacy and Security Policy-
- Basic foreign policy stance
In terms of diplomacy, Japan, having expressed remorse for the last war, will take the lead in promoting as our national policy the achievement of "coexistence" between human beings and between nation states, in other words ensuring peace for Japan and for the world, and "coexistence" between human beings and the natural world, in other words preserving the global environment.
Furthermore, we will build equal relationships based on mutual trust with countries around the world and promote a peaceful, free and open international community. In particular, we will create a true alliance of equals with the United States and nurture a relationship of trust with China, South Korea and other Asian nations.
- Establish genuine Japan-US Alliance
We will construct a mutual relationship of trust between Japan and the United States and establish genuine Alliance of equals between Japan and the US. To this end, Japan will construct her own diplomatic strategy, and we will make our national position clear. Furthermore, Japan should undertake a division of roles with the United States at an international level and actively fulfil the responsibility for her designated role.
Furthermore, in order to promote the establishment of genuine Japan-US Alliance, we will sign an FTA with the United States at the earliest opportunity and promote the liberalization of a variety of sectors.
- Strengthen Asian diplomacy
As a member nation of Asia, we will make every effort to construct a relationship of trust with Asia nations, beginning with China and South Korea, and strengthen our cooperation with the countries of Asia within the larger international community. We will establish a regional cooperation framework within the Asian-Pacific region to deal in particular with energy, trade and environmental issues.
- Take the lead in nuclear abolition
As the only nation to have suffered a nuclear attack, Japan will take the lead and act toward global nuclear abolition. Our nation will take the initiative, calling for the understanding of the nuclear powers and forming a network with non-nuclear powers and NGOs, actively and steadily promoting nuclear arms reduction frameworks and the strengthening of nuclear non-proliferation systems including the establishment of an effective inspection system.
- Initiate liberalization of trade and investment
As well as promoting discussions relating to the liberalization of trade and investment through the WTO, we will actively promote the signing of free trade agreements, covering a wide variety of fields including investment, labour and intellectual property, with a variety of countries around the world and in particular Asian-Pacific nations. With a view to achieving this, we will create an environment in which our nation can exercise leadership internationally in the area of trade by thoroughly reviewing policies including agriculture.
- Carry out a comprehensive review of Official Development Aid (ODA)
We will carry out a comprehensive review of ODA and provide focused assistance to preserve the natural environment and improve living conditions in the recipient countries. This will be a breakthrough that will enable Japan to attain the position of a world leader in preserving the global environment.
- Limit the exercise of the right of self defence to an exclusively defensive stance
We will play an active role in preserving the peace of Japan and the world, based on the philosophy of the Japanese Constitution. Regardless of past debate regarding the concepts of individual and collective self defence, the right to self defence will only be exercised, in accordance with Article 9 and based on the principle of exclusively defensive security, if our nation is faced with an imminent and unlawful infringement that directly threatens the peace and security of Japan. We will not engage in the use of force in any other case.
- Participate actively in United Nations peace operations
The United Nations is a great legacy for humanity that was created from the remorse stemming from two world wars, and we must build world peace centering on this legacy.
UN peace operations are in harmony with the philosophy of the Constitution, which calls for Japan to play an active role in the international community, and are of a different nature from the exercise of the right to self-defence by a sovereign state. Consequently, we will actively participate in such operations, including those in accordance with Articles 41 and 42 of the UN charter, following a request from the United Nations. Such participation will take place under civilian control and at our nation窶冱 own discretion.
- Realise Public Safety and Security by First Realising Food Security
- Ensure food safety
In order to ensure food safety and security, we will expand the food traceability system and make it comprehensive. Furthermore, we will establish a strict product labelling system that involves compulsory labelling of food products, including the ingredients in processed food products, with the region of origin. We will unify food product safety administration, which is spread across various government agencies and vertically administered.
- Aim for total food self-sufficiency
We will establish a food self-sufficiency system in order that all of the minimum amount of calories necessary for the public to live healthily can be grown domestically, without relying on overseas imports.
- Protect the small-scale producers who are essential to the regions and invigorate rural communities
In our nation窶冱 rural communities, small and large-scale operations and full-time and part-time producers are woven together in a complex fabric, which preserves traditional culture and the environment and maintains healthy communities. Therefore, we will implement a comprehensive policy to revive rural communities so that they can continue production even on a small-scale and make an independent living. As part of this plan, we will enable young people to establish themselves in the regions by expanding job opportunities through the implementation of total decentralisation, and make use of a whole variety of human resources, including seniors, to invigorate the regions.
- Establish an (individual) household income support system
LDP administration policies that simply call for large-scale production dependent on area, and have abandoned small-scale farmers, are eliminating the scope for nurturing a distinctive agriculture and inviting the devastation of regional communities and culture. In order to avoid such a situation, we will carry out a comprehensive review of agricultural administration to date for key agricultural products, and create an "individual household income support system" in which the state pays each individual farmer the difference between production costs and the market price for such products.
- Aim for an Environmentally-Friendly Nation that is the Envy of the World
- Japan co-existing with nature
We will further enrich our lives by creating an environment friendly to both human beings and the Earth and continue to sustain and develop Japan窶冱 position as the most energy-efficient nation in the world, thereby making a contribution to the world and to future generations. We will make the preservation for future generations of our country窶冱 precious natural environment, including forests near human settlements that are intimately connected with people窶冱 lives, terraced rice-fields, rivers and eco-systems, an important focus of our domestic policy, and the furthering of environmental preservation on a global scale through ODA, and technical cooperation and transfers by both the public and private sectors a vital focus of our foreign policy. In this way we will aim to create an environmentally- friendly nation that is the envy of the world.
- Create wealth from the environment
We will build a new economic and social system so that sustaining and improving the environment becomes a source of economic activity. We will promote adjustments to various systems, including the legal system, in order to unify the environment and the economy. These will include the further development of environmental technologies and energy-saving technologies, in which Japan is already a world leader, the elucidation of natural systems such as the internal functions of organisms and their development into technologies, the development of business models linking environmental protection to business expansion, and the spread of environmental accounting. We will comprehensively review the redress and compensation systems for those people who have suffered damage to their health under the influence of economic growth.
- Strongly promote measures to combat global warming
Having set long-term targets for the reduction of greenhouse gases inside Japan, we will strongly promote measures such as limits on demand for energy, further promotion of energy-saving measures, promoting the spread of renewable energies, and revision of the legal framework for trading emission rights. As well as fulfilling her own targets under the Kyoto Protocol, Japan will proceed actively to hold environmental dialogue with various countries, and seek to play a significant role in the formation of a new international framework following the end of the Kyoto Protocol, and lead the world in measures to combat global warming.
- Spread the wisdom of "mottai nai" ["what a waste"], and transform Japan into a recycling society
We will review the situation in our society, which both consumes and disposes of waste in huge amounts, as is represented by the fact that the equivalent of one quarter of food then measured in terms of calories is thrown away. In order to regenerate and spread the long-held wisdom of "mottai nai" ["what a waste"], which was born out of people窶冱 everyday lives, and to transform Japan into a recycling society that conserves resources and thoroughly implements the 3 Rs of Reuse, Reduce and Recycle, we will undertake a fundamental review of the current legal system.
- Invigorate the Economy and Small and Medium–Sized Enterprises through
-Decentralisation, Regulatory Reform and Dismantling the Bureaucracy-
- Invigorate regional economies through realising decentralisation
By realising true decentralisation, such as the abolishment of individual subsidies and the transfer of powers and resources to the regions, we will promote the regional establishment of corporations and human resources from the financial, cultural, educational and other fields. Equipping local authorities with powers and resources will facilitate the speedy implementation of measures that respond to local needs, such as revision of the system of tax breaks and regional funds to promote research and development in local small and medium sized enterprises, and the practical application of traditional culture and techniques from the regions in modern society, and will encourage improvement in transmission and accumulation of information, thereby increasing the vitality of SMEs and micro firms. Through such measures, we will reduce the disparities between urban areas and the regions in a whole variety of areas, including economy and culture.
- Assistance for SMEs and micro-firms
Small-scale enterprises are the backbone of our national economy, and a source for creating and developing employment and business chances. In order to make this clear, we will create a "SMEs Charter". We will correct the old-style trading and financial customs that could be described as abuse of superiority, such as bullying of subcontractors and demands for third party guarantors, and in addition to maintaining a fair and equal competitive environment for SMEs, we will establish an SME taxation system through review of the taxation of sole proprietorships, and tackle the issues of lack of successors for businesses and smooth handovers to successors. Through such measures, we will increase the vitality of SMEs and promote entrepreneurship.
- Create towns where everyone can leadﾂ? rich lives
We will promote the rejuvenation of town centres as the focal points of local economies, including providing assistance to local shop owners, with the aim of creating environmentally-friendly towns that are easy for seniors to live in. Once central government has formulated the basic legal system and guidelines regarding the basic vision and the way in which liaison with large-scale commercial facilities is to be conducted, all powers regarding town planning will be transferred on principle to towns and villages, and local residents will play a leading role in the invigoration of town centres in accordance with local conditions.
- Abolish business controls and ensure next generation competitiveness
We will review current business controls, starting totally from scratch, and abolish controls on private sector businesses.
On the other hand, we will promote the revision of systems and structures to ensure an environment for fair competition.
We will develop policies focused on working toward the elimination of the shortfalls in both skills and numbers of researchers and technicians working in biotechnology, IT, nanotechnology, environment and energy and other cutting-edge technologies, and support the growth and expansion of the private sector economy.
- Sustained economic growth
In addition to realising substantial reductions in public expenditure through the total abolition of individual subsidies and the abolition or privatization of special corporations and the like, central government will also withdraw from projects that should under normal circumstances be carried out by the private sector, and by expanding the private sector we will bring about a further increase in economic activity. Furthermore, while working to ensure that asset-based income is taxed at appropriate levels, we will promote the shift from "savings to investment" by giving a certain amount of consideration to long-tem share ownership, and engage in developing a healthy market. Through these means we will place the Japanese economy on the path to sustainable growth.
- Change the "Shape of the Nation" through True Decentralisation
-Decentralisation and Self-Government-
- Establish a decentralised state
We will undertake sweeping revision of the centralized system of government in place since the Meiji Period and establish a decentralised nation. We will alter the system to one in which the authority and resources for regional affairs are entrusted to the regions, and enable both Diet members and central government bureaucrats to dedicate themselves to their real work of national affairs.
- Consolidate basic local authorities
We will group all of the nation窶冱 local authorities into around 300 "basic local authorities" that will form the nucleus of our decentralised nation.
We will undertake a massive transfer of authority and resources, in order that "basic local authorities" can undertake all of the administrative affairs of which they are capable, starting with administrative services concerned with people窶冱 daily lives, and aim to create a new "shape of the nation" made up of central government and basic local authorities.
- The role of central government
We will limit the role of central government to overall national security, ranging from diplomacy, defence, crisis management and law and order to food supplies and energy; ultimate responsibility for education and social security; currency; establishment of rules relating to the market economy; and large-scale projects taking place on a national level.
- Abolish individual subsidies
We will basically abolish all individual subsidies granted by central government that serve as a source of the control exercised by the central bureaucracy and a breeding ground for special interests. We will create genuine local authorities that ensure the regions have their own financial resources, including local allocation tax. In this way we will greatly decrease personnel costs and economic costs relating to subsidies for both central and local government, and this will also lead to the restoration of public finances to health.
- Return Politics to the Hands of the People
-Political and Administrative Reform-
- Ensure public participation in politics
Elections are the starting point of democracy, and the greatest right held by the public when participating in politics. In order to guarantee this right and to realise fairer and broader political participation, we will correct the disparities in the weight of individual votes, introduce a minimum voting age of 18 and promote the use of the Internet. When making political decisions regarding important policies, we will create a system of implementing national referendums, in order to take public opinion into account.
Furthermore, we will increase the transparency of political funds by prohibiting indirect donations and the like, and realise fair, transparent and trustworthy politics.
- As representatives of the people, Diet members determine policy and monitor its implementation
We will transform the Diet into a forum where Diet members, as the representatives of our sovereigns, the Japanese people, hold discussions and deliberations, and will not permit bureaucrats to participate in Diet deliberations. Only Diet members will participate in debate in committees in both Houses of the Diet, and hearing opinions and collecting materials from central government bureaucrats and private individuals will take place in subcommittees established under the relevant committees.
We will establish an "administrative monitoring body" in the Diet, and work to enhance the administrative monitoring function of the legislature.
- Strengthen the functions of Senior Vice Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries
We will revise the system so that the posts of Senior Vice Ministers and Parliamentary Secretary, held by Diet members, can play a systematic and substantial role within the Cabinet Office. For example, we will abolish the Administrative Vice Ministers Council and carry out internal government coordination through the Senior Vice Ministers Council.
- Establish a crisis management structure
We will create a system and organisation to respond comprehensively and immediately to states of emergency such as the invasion of our country, large-scale acts of terrorism, large-scale natural disasters, energy crises, financial crises and the like, and establish a peacetime crisis management system centred around the Prime Minister.
Since there is no provision for states of emergency in the Japanese Constitution, we will carry out speedy amendments of defects in the legal system, so as for example to avoid restricting basic human rights via "extra-legal measures" that are not based on the Constitution or current law.
- Abolish or privatise special corporations
As a rule, we will return the status of all special corporations, independently administered corporations and their related special accounts to the drawing board, with the assumption that they will in principle be abolished. We will privatise those organisations that we believe should continue to exist in the private sector, and the government will directly administer those bodies considered essential to the nation. Public corporations that in effect act as extra-departmental bodies for various government ministries, by for example gaining a business monopoly in exchange for acting as hosts for parachuting bureaucrats, will be abolished as part of reforming the system.