It wasn’t a surprise result. The governing LDP and coalition partner Komeito managed to get two-thirds majority +1, which is enough to do basically anything they want to do, including changing the constitution (which would still require a referendum).
I just hope Abe doesn’t use this “mandate” (only 35% of the electorate voted) to start working on constitutional revisions or revisionist history projects.
One question I have for some of my friends who describe Abenomics as “trickle-down economics” is this. What I understand trickle-down to be is that tax benefits are given to the wealthy in hopes that they will use the money to create jobs. But fiscal conservatives in the United States are opposed to more government spending in general.
Abe, though, has been printing money, and injecting large amounts into stimulus projects. It always sounded to me like American liberal economics. Almost the sort of thing that the Democratic Party would do if it had control of Congress. I think Republicans in the United States would be horrified at the way the LDP is doing economics.
In other words, I’ve always thought of the current LDP as strongly nationalistic, not really engaged in the “social issues” which consume the United States, and extremely liberal on economic issues.
Am I wrong?