2008年09月26日

吉田茂

(Mainichi Japan) September 25, 2008
Which politician will be the next cartoon hero?
余録:風刺漫画の主人公

Former Prime Minister Shigeru Yoshida was looking for the house of an acquaintance while visiting Kamakura when a child playing baseball on a vacant lot saw him, and shouted, "The prime minister's here!"
吉田茂元首相が鎌倉の知人を訪ね、家を探していると、空き地で野球をしていた子供が見つけて叫んだ。「総理大臣がいるよ!」。

One of his playmates, not taking him seriously, shouted back, "Why would the prime minister come here?" But the child who had seen Yoshida said, "But he looks just like the cartoon character." Yoshida himself was fond of retelling this story.
仲間がバカにしたように「こんなとこに総理大臣がいるもんか」と言うと、見つけた子は「けど、漫画にそっくりだよ」吉田本人が好んで語っていた話という。

Indeed, Yoshida was caricatured in countless cartoons, and when he retired, one cartoonist came out with a cartoon in which cartoonists express their gratitude to the prime minister.
実際、風刺漫画に数限りなく描かれ、引退時には漫画家がこぞって元首相に感謝している漫画まで描かれたという人だ。

His grandson, Liberal Democratic Party President and Prime Minister Taro Aso, who is himself a cartoon fan, has finally acquired the throne that allows him to become the hero of a political cartoon. In a crowded field of five, Aso won two-thirds of the votes cast in the LDP presidential election, and cruised to a landslide victory.
その孫で、自身が漫画ファンという麻生太郎自民党新総裁も、ようやく念願の風刺漫画の主人公の座を手中に収めた
5人の候補乱立となった自民党総裁選で、投票総数の3分の2を集めて圧勝した麻生新総裁だった。

Aso takes the helm of a party that has been peering over the precipice because its two previous leaders abandoned the reins of government. But the new prime minister's plans for opposing Democratic Party of Japan leader Ichiro Ozawa, who on the previous day had unveiled his own platform, are falling into place. Without a doubt, the LDP is reading from a playbook that calls for the selection of a new party president to jumpstart the party's sagging approval ratings, and the pumping up of the new leader's popularity as he heads into the general election.
2代続けてトップが政権を投げ出したガケっぷちの党を率い、前日に政権構想を発表した民主党・小沢一郎代表と対決する構図が固まった
もともと新総裁選びで党の支持率低下をリセットし、新リーダーの人気をもり立てて総選挙に臨むのが自民党のシナリオに違いない。

But in the interim, the U.S. financial crisis and the tainted rice scandal have snowballed. Holding the party presidential election in the midst of these events left people with the impression that Japanese politics was incapable of mustering a response.
だがこの間の米金融危機、汚染米問題の拡大である。そのさなかの総裁選は状況に対応できない日本政治を象徴するかのように国民の目に映った

Shigeru Yoshida hated election campaigns. When his campaign strategists urged him to deliver speeches on the street, he refused, saying, "How can I speak on affairs of state where there is constant horse and car traffic!" But today, the LDP's popularity depends on the constant traffic of new party presidents. It just so happens that Ozawa's father, Saeki Ozawa, a masterful politician, was a close associate of Yoshida's. So of these two party leaders with a connection to Yoshida, who will survive to become the hero of a political cartoon? ("Yoroku," a front page column in the Mainichi Shimbun)
選挙運動嫌いだった吉田茂は、選挙参謀が街頭演説を求めると「車馬絡繹(らくえき)で国事が語れるか」と言って応じなかった。「絡繹」とは人馬の往来が絶えないさまを示した古い言葉だが、今や自民党には新総裁の絡繹での人気が頼りのようである
ちなみに小沢代表の父親、小沢佐重喜(さえき)も吉田茂の側近としてらつ腕を振るった政治家だった。ではこの吉田ゆかりの与野党リーダー2人、どちらが風刺漫画の主人公として生き残るだろう。
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