Party Establishment Declaration
Profile of Yasuo Tanaka
A lecture on FCCJ by Yasuo Tanaka
July 10th， 2007
Party Establishment Declaration
A fear of failure will not give birth
to new ideas.
Confined by old concepts, we cannot build a new Japan.
We will do what others cannot, earnestly and unceasingly.
Our motto is “A Japan We Can Trust”.
Dreams are found in overturning the
A Japan for all of us is on the move!
Towards a Japan we can trust.
August 22, 2005
Profile of Yasuo Tanaka
Captain of New Party Nippon
Member the House of Councillors,
Former Nagano Ｇovernor , Ｎovelist
Tanaka was born in Tokyo on April 12, 1956. He and his family
began living in Nagano prefecture in 1963 when his father
began teaching at Shinshu University. He spent his childhood
days in Ueda city and Matsumoto city in the prefecture from
the 2nd grade till high school graduation.
received the Bungei Award in 1980 when he was a law student
at Hitotsubashi University with his maiden novel, ‘Nantonaku,
Crystal (Feeling Crystal).’ The story, featuring young people
living in a post-war economic prosperity, sold over a million
copies. It received rave reviews from many literary critics
including Jun Eto and Hiroshi Noma who is also a novelist.
wrote ‘Brilliant na Gogo,’ (Brilliant Afternoon) featuring
a fashion model who put all her energy and spirit in ‘flashy
moments’ on a catwalk. In ‘On Happiness,’ he wrote about a
checkered relationship between two girls seeking true happiness
in life. He also wrote many short stories including ‘Mukashi-mitai
(Just like Yesterday), ‘Thirsty,’ and ‘H.’ All these stories
feature young people, so-called ‘children of a consumption
age’ living in an age of material prosperity, each struggling
to find his or her true-self, identity.
In the area of sociology, Tanaka began
a serial called ‘Faddish Modernology’ in weekly Asahi Journal
in 1985, ‘Kami-naki kuni no Gulliver (Gulliver on a godless
land) in weekly Shukan Spa!. He currently writes ‘Tokyo Peroguri
Diary,’ and ‘Kikkai Nippon , （Bizarre Japan) in evening newspaper
the great Hanshin Earthquake hit in 1995 and 4 days after
the disaster, Tanaka rushed to help quake victims at shelters
and tent villages, riding on a 50 cc motorbike. He continued
his volunteer activities for 6 months, helping people living
in temporary housing. He wrote about his activities and thoughts
on ‘engagement’ in a book called ‘a Kobe Earthquake Journal.’
In October, 2000, Tanaka became Nagano Governor. He declared
‘No-more-dam’ in February, 2001 and a departure from the conventional
press club system in May the same year. Both touched off a
major controversy but that signaled the beginning of his challenge
against the back-scratching nature of an insular country of
July, 2002, the Nagano assembly led overwhelmingly by Dam
construction proponents passed a no-confidence motion against
Tanaka. He chose to lose his job and announced the holding
of a gubernatorial election on August 15th, which is the anniversary
of the end of world war two. Tanaka won the election overwhelmingly.
details are in the New Japan Declaration, Nagano, under his
leadership, became the only prefecture to reduce its outstanding
debts for 6 consecutive years by a total of 92.3 billion yen
and achieved primary surpluses for 7 straight years. Tanaka
implemented an open and transparent competitive tendering
system in various fields. The unprecedented move pushed down
the average successful bidding rate of over 97 percent to
about 75 percent.
was the first nationwide to introduce elementary school classes
limited to 30 students and carried out reforms in welfare,
education, health care and the environment. Declaration of
the Karuizawa Method for Condominiums to preserve the scenery
of summer resort Karuizawa presented a guideline for similar
efforts by other autonomies.
set up an investigative committee to unravel irregularities
in the bidding process for the Nagano winter Olympics. Books,
the former governor and his close aide claimed to have burned,
were discovered. The committee also uncovered the fact that
a bank president had issued an audit oversight.
report dismissing any evidence of irregularities in the bidding
financial report which in fact produced a colossal expenditures
August, 2005, Tanaka established New Party Nippon with a message
of ‘changing Japan from regional communities,’ In a general
election in September the same year, the party fielded candidates
in 5 out of 11 blocks under the proportional representation
system and garnered 1 point 64 million votes (That’s about
2 point 4 percent of the total votes cast.) (If converted
to 11 blocks, the votes level those garnered by the Social
August, 2006, Tanaka sought gubernatorial reelection for the
3rd time, but lost it by a narrow margin, although he garnered
530 thousand votes, which was about 48 percent of the valid
is running in the upcoming 21st upper house election, along
with Yoshifu Arita, an anti-AUM journalist, who has also contributed
a lot in solving the North Korean abduction issue.
‘Nantonaku, Crystal (Feeling Crystal).’
‘a Kobe Earthquake Journal.’
‘Nippon − Minia Japonia’
‘Nagano Revolution 638 days’
‘Tokyo Peroguri Diary,’
‘Anti-Bid-Rigging Governor Yasuo Tanaka’
has given speeches 4 times in the past at FCCJ, the Foreign
Correspondents Club of Japan, in June, 1981, May, 2001, August,
2002 and in August, 2005.
in English at FCCJ as Nagano Governor
May 21st, 2001:
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