Self-awareness has never been a strong point for any of the Ishiharas but this Yomiuri article was special.
It appears that Ishihara Nobuteru, after utilizing and exhausting all of his available neural complexity, has figured out why the LDP can’t catch any of the many breaks that DPJ rule has offered them. It is the media’s fault. And he wants to establish “a unit to monitor media coverage of the LDP, with a view to lodging objections in response to reports seen as inaccurate or unfair.”
This sentence was most mirthful:
Ishihara, who was the driving force behind the creation of the new unit, apparently considers media criticism of the LDP a key reason for the party’s low support rate, despite the fact that the approval rating for Prime Minister Naoto Kan’s Cabinet is also languishing.1
This is certainly a possibility. There is also another one. Academics and specialists in electoral politics have called this the “you suck so, so bad the public would prefer a tranquillized hedgehog” effect. Consider that the media has had it in for Kan and the DPJ, as has the bureaucracy in Kasumigaseki since day 1. That the DPJ and their cabinets seem to alternate between periods of incompetence and incomprehensible party disunity, especially for a first time ruling party. That both the Chinese and the US have not exactly made things easier in terms of diplomacy for the DPJ. And that economic recession and horrifying natural disasters have characterized the time the ruling party has spent, “ruling.” Despite all of this, less than 20% of the population want to see you and your like return to power.
But, it could be the media.
1 I think this also offers a very telling insight into the minds of many of the LDP’s senior leadership. They must have figured that the public had simply misunderstood them and only through a bit of bad luck were they turfed out (perhaps they believed the bad luck was the recession). Thus, all they had to do was undermine the DPJ and make them look incompetent for long enough and all of a sudden everyone would remember the good old days and come running back to the LDP of old. Such is their belief in their entitlement to rule. So entitled they are some believe, the only possible explanation for the current state of affairs is that something like the media must be at fault for their conundrum. Even if the reality of the situation is completely at odds with a “DPJ-bias” in the media.