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NEWS: Manga Fan Asō Tarō Again in Running for Japan's Top Post


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Who Is This Guy!?



Joined: 07 Aug 2008
Posts: 183
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:09 pm Reply with quote
This dude's a general homie.

Proof enough that geek culture is the next pop culture phenomenon.
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Pepperidge



Joined: 13 Sep 2003
Posts: 1095
Location: British Columbia, Canada
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:17 pm Reply with quote
I'm baffled by the fact that ANN keeps painting such a positive portrait of this guy. He's a rabid nationalist and is well known for having made insanely racist and xenophobic comments in the past, which can be seen on his Wikipedia entry. His hawkish views on foreign policy are pretty unsettling. The way that so much focus is being placed on his innocuous manga fixation reflects quite a bit on how cartoons are very often used to mask questionable authority in Japan.
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Kyogissun



Joined: 17 Aug 2007
Posts: 676
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:28 pm Reply with quote
...There's gotta be more to this guy than being a mere manga fan.

Politics is shady stuff no matter where you live... I imagine it's the same for japan.

And by shady, I mean... Well, I mean that lots of times, people are not 100% clear on their intentions...
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Kyogissun



Joined: 17 Aug 2007
Posts: 676
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:42 pm Reply with quote
...And is it just me or did the article get removed?
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IDACORASKA



Joined: 04 Jul 2008
Posts: 6
Location: Metro Denver, Colorado
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:43 pm Reply with quote
IDACORASKA Sez: Not Only Are There Pollitically Active Otaku In Japan, But Also Otaku Who Support Both Major Parties Here In The U.S. This Past Week I Happened To Pass-By A D.N.C. Deligate Who Is Also An Otaku, And I Myself Am A Republican Otaku. Unfornatly We Did Not Get The Chance To Talk To Each Other, Or We Would Have Had A Very Instering Conversation.
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Tempest
I Run this place.
ANN Publisher & CEO


Joined: 29 Dec 2001
Posts: 9997
Location: Do not message me for support.
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:45 pm Reply with quote
Pepperidge wrote:
I'm baffled by the fact that ANN keeps painting such a positive portrait of this guy. He's a rabid nationalist and is well known for having made insanely racist and xenophobic comments in the past, which can be seen on his Wikipedia entry. His hawkish views on foreign policy are pretty unsettling. The way that so much focus is being placed on his innocuous manga fixation reflects quite a bit on how cartoons are very often used to mask questionable authority in Japan.


We paint a portrait? It's positive? Really ?

Sorry, but you're reading more into our coverage than is really there. I wrote the article. ANN has no opinion about the guy, we don't care that he's right-wing, beyond the fact that he's interesting from a manga related point of view.

I'm a socialist (ie: probably much more left wing than you), and I don't agree much with any of the statement's Aso makes. But that doesn't change the fact that ANN and I have a responsibility to provide unpartisan coverage of this guys because he is interesting to the anime/manga world and has an impact on the anime/manga world that other politicians don't have.

That's why we cover him, and cover him is all we do. We don't write anything remotely "positive" about him, just facts about things he's done that relate to anime/manga. That's our job.

Perhaps a deeper, unbiased look at his politics is something we could do.. but I honestly don't think our readers would care.

AsI said, I am socialist, ANN on the other hand is non-political.

-t
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GATSU



Joined: 03 Jan 2002
Posts: 14575
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:01 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Also last year, he said that Americans could not solve the Middle East crisis because they have blond hair and blue eyes and added, "Japanese are trusted. Luckily we have yellow faces."


I guess those Japanese peacekeepers captured and/or killed in Iraq would agree. Rolling Eyes But yeah, I'm getting tired of these Asian Holocaust deniers being the only candidates running the place.

tempest:
Quote:
But that doesn't change the fact that ANN and I have a responsibility to provide unpartisan coverage of this guys because he is interesting to the anime/manga world


Some military otaku in a prominent position who is simply replacing two people in a party which mismanaged the country isn't what I'd call "interesting". It's like calling Al Kahn interesting, because of the success of Yu Gi Oh and Pokemon.

Quote:
and has an impact on the anime/manga world that other politicians don't have.


Yes, he'll impact it in the sense that he'll give it the negative connotations we've been trying to erase.
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posterior_praiser



Joined: 21 Oct 2007
Posts: 296
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:07 pm Reply with quote
humm from the sounds of it, this guy makes McCain and Palin look like bleeding heart liberals. Does this guy have a real shot at taking the top job in Japan? It seems he is the front runner to take over his party. Hopefully, whoever the next PM is, they will stick around a bit longer than the past several.
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Tempest
I Run this place.
ANN Publisher & CEO


Joined: 29 Dec 2001
Posts: 9997
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:28 pm Reply with quote
GATSU wrote:
Yes, he'll impact it in the sense that he'll give it the negative connotations we've been trying to erase.


Great. You agree that he'll have an impact, which is all it takes to make it newsworthy.

I never said he's have a good impact.

Stop arguing for no purpose whatsoever. You could easily have stated your opinions (which have some validity to them) without trying to contradicts others in the process.

-t
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The Xenos



Joined: 29 Mar 2004
Posts: 1517
Location: Boston
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 2:57 pm Reply with quote
I heard this on the radio this morning and wondered if ANN would report. I have a tough time getting a grasp on US politics, and not for lack of trying like some of my apolitical friends. It's a crazy world out there. I just love that the words liberal and democratic are actually used for the more conservative party there, something sure to throw people for a loop. (And here I thought some people had trouble understanding the word manga.)

Meanwhile, I'm sure a number of apolitical US Japanophiles and manga fans will gladly think they're for this guy due to his comments on manga. Meanwhile, this is among the same group that tends to hate American conservatives like Bush and even come up with crazy rumors like he was going to ban anime. Ha. There's enough W has actually done to hang the guy. Forget more moderate Republicans like McCain, this guy sounds like he makes Bush seem a bit 'liberal'. Meanwhile, side note, I'm rather appalled a friend at my comic shop keeps saying McCain is too liberal. I think he's thankfully more moderate, closer to center, but he's not that liberal at all. Well, whatever liberal means. I tend to rule politics on a more than just left and right. Crazy middle of the road libertarian that I am mixing up conventional linear political views.

And hey, at least Bush doesn't deny atrocities of WWII. Imagine if an American presidential candidate denied proof of the internment of Japanese Americans or the firebombing of Tokyo. This ass hat sounds like he's questioning some of Japan's atrocities. Having studied the whole Korean comfort women issue in a class, I'm highly disturbed by that.

Meanwhile, this also reminds me of the contrast between Japanese manga fans and American manga fans. I've heard a number of comments that lead me to believe that a good number of Japanese fans are actually rather conservative and that there's a decent and somewhat disturbing streak of nationalism in the fandom. Meanwhile, American anime and manga fans tend to be quite liberal and, well, simply aren't too keen on their own country. It almsot seems that many are much more keen on Japan than their own country, the polar opposite of what I sense a decent amount of Japan. Not that there aren't Japanese who are very keen on America or even moving here. I've met some of those people first hand too.

Plus, another issue Aso and I differ on is the very word manga. He thinks that the word should spread globally. Meanwhile, I disagree with that, because we already have our own words and industry. Well, it's almost nice to know that all these American fans that I argue with are actually agreeing with a conservative nationalist like this guy. Well, if it wasn't disturbing that such a political figure is swaying American kids with nationalistic tripe. Manga politics make strange bedfellows, I guess.
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Kyogissun



Joined: 17 Aug 2007
Posts: 676
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 3:08 pm Reply with quote
I'd change the term describing american anime and manga fans from liberal... to open minded...

I myself am of no real definition in what little political beliefs that I have but I can tell by one thing, this guy is appearing to have a hook, which IMHO, is just unpleasant.

It would be the same thing if there was a presidential nominee here who wanted to make solving video game ratings issues and incidents related to under age gamers getting mature titles. I just wouldn't do it... I can't buy into someone because they have one thing I like that isn't meaningful to the society.

But manga and anime is a huge influence in the japanese society, isn't it? So... I guess I'd be wrong to say that him being a fan isn't going to help him.
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dangerwhat



Joined: 22 Jul 2007
Posts: 187
Location: Central Florida
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 3:16 pm Reply with quote
Just as an aside, I didn't get the impression that ANN was giving a positive review of the guy, just cut and dry facts.

Japanese government has long been rough - lately even more so. Two Prime Ministers in that short a period of time? Holy crow. Before Koizumi they went through Prime Ministers very often. So it makes one think a little bit about how the Japanese run their politics and what they think as policy makers for their country.

I'm not especially surprised by Asou's comments, especially. There seems to be some manner of Nationalist "uprising" these days. Given the "global political climate" thats understandable, even if unwelcome. Its not hard for me to imagine Asou becoming the next PM, much to chagrin of other countries in the area. Maybe he can do good things for the country, I don't know. Some of things he's said though, cast some doubt on whether or not he'd be the right person for the job.

I'm glad that he's into Manga, though perhaps that is more news to us than to them given the proliferation of Manga among the "regular folk" in comparison to the US. But still, I'm glad that he's a Manga nut and that he can see Manga as a useful medium for both entertainment and education.

All views have a place in politics, suppose. I'm just not sure if he's the right man for Prime Minister of Japan.
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Gage



Joined: 06 May 2006
Posts: 480
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 3:25 pm Reply with quote
Maybe ANN should be more politically driven. That'd be interesting. Or perhaps that should be left for the bloggers, huh? Let's see how it works. Gatsu, you up for the position?
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doctordoom85



Joined: 12 Jun 2008
Posts: 2019
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 3:39 pm Reply with quote
Interesting timing, given the recent Anime News Nina comic..... Wink

I wonder if he's an Ultimate Mop Daisuke DX fan.....
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dangerwhat



Joined: 22 Jul 2007
Posts: 187
Location: Central Florida
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 5:14 pm Reply with quote
doctordoom85 wrote:

I wonder if he's an Ultimate Mop Daisuke DX fan.....


No idea but apparently he's a Rozen Maiden fan though. xD
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