Talk for Article "Questions on Japan and a push for a nuclear-free future"

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    I’m not an expert by any measure, but have lived in Japan and may be able to point to some good resources and background reading.
    A very good – if somewhat biased in some respects – read for background on Japan’s power structure and its history is “Japan and the Shackles of the Past”, by R. Taggart Murphy. My personal impressions and this book are probably what I would cite to back up any claims below.

    Regarding the discussion points:

    1. It’s unclear to me why this is a main point. Obviously, it’s related, but is this the main alternative suggested by the CDP? If it is, this should be clearly stated.
    Regarding the question itself – I’m not sure this is easily answerable. For one thing, how much expansion are we talking about? Enough to support a few individual regions/ prefectures? Enough to support the country? Is the question only if this is strictly possible (to which the answer is almost certainly yes, especially if we limit the amount of required power), or whether it is worthwhile (whatever metric you use to define that; regardless of which this is almost intractable)?

    2. Japan’s power plants are owned by the regional and local power companies.
    For example, the Fukushima plant, if I am not mistaken, was owned by TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company). I believe it is privately owned, but used to be a governmental company. It is a stretch to claim it has no governmental ties, though… (for details like ownership etc., Wikipedia seems good. Regarding the statement that it is closely tied to government, I mostly base this on the general structure of power and large industry in Japan, as described in the book I mentioned at the top).

    3. I don’t know if there are any recent polls on this, but my impression is that this is not the case. Again, this is just my personal impression – but it seems to me the younger generations are the ones more opposed to the use of nuclear power. Definitely needs a more reliable source to be backed up and put in an article, though.

    4. I honestly don’t know… I started looking up the party and its leaders on Wikipedia, which gave some basic background and a tenuous connection to Hosokawa Morihiro (you can read a little about his role in Japanese politics in Murphy’s book). I assume you guys have already done this much, though…
    If you want some of the corresponding pages/ other sources translated from Japanese, I could possibly help to some extent.

    Best of luck,
    Seon

    1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

      Hi Seon,

      This is great. Do you have any questions you want answered on nuclear power and the CDP?

      Also, my Japanese is nearly non-existent. It would be great if you could proof read this Twitter message I want to send to CDP…

      こんにちは、私はWikiTribuneのジャーナリストです。私の日本語は良くありません。CDPで英語を話せる方がいらっしゃいますか?

      If you have the time, perhaps you could translate questions and answers between the WikiTribune community and a CDP spokesperson. This is a big ask, but it would be incredibly helpful.

      1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

        Hi Charles,

        I can’t think of any questions I have off the top of my head, but will comment here if I think of anything.

        The message looks okay. Polite, but somewhat straightforward/ blunt. Personally, I would add some introduction as to why you are writing to them, beyond just being a journalist. But then again, you are saying your Japanese isn’t great and are essentially asking to communicate in English, so it’s probably fine.

        I would be happy to help with translation, but don’t know how much time I will be able to commit to this… how urgently would these need to be taken care of once they are received?

        1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

          Maybe 2-3 days? It’s a lot to ask to translate all of the questions. Maybe just focus on translating the below question if you have a moment.

          How do you plan to reach Liberal Democrat voters and convince them that CDP is a trustworthy alternative?

          1. [ This comment is from a user you have muted ] (show)

            Okay. Depending on volume, this may or may not be something I can take on…
            If you do have things that are higher priority, I can translate those for sure, but then it’s unclear to me whether that’s actually helpful (this means you would need to communicate in English, in which case I can’t see why there is a need for translation).

            Another point I would like to make is that translating into Japanese is more tricky – politics and newspapers use quite sophisticated language, and it is possible I will construct sentences that miss certain nuances (or include ones I did not intend to).
            This is easier to deal with the other way around (at least for a non-native speaker like me), and will also take me less time.

            Regarding the sentence you sent me – my translation for it is below. Translating backwards, this would read something like “How will (TN: can also be interpreted as does) CDP demonstrate to LDP voters that they (TN: CDP) are an alternative worthy of trust? (TN: the phrase used here has a wider and more emotional connotation than in English; literally would mean ‘entrust their trust’)”

            自由民主党を投票した有権者に立憲民主党が信頼を預けるのに相応しい選択肢だとどうやって示しますか?

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