Fukuda Cabinet E-mail Magazine No.40 (July 24, 2008) ============================================================
"So that the people can truly feel happy. This is Yasuo Fukuda."
The rainy season has finally come to an end and the weather is heating up. This is the season when the rice paddies are a glistening green. Many students are parting ways for the summer holidays this week, but I am a little ahead of you this year, having taken my own summer holiday from the second half of last week.
About ten months have elapsed since September of last year, when I assumed the office of Prime Minister. The extraordinary Diet session went on past the year's end, and after its closing, there was only a brief, two-day interval before the opening of the ordinary Diet session. After the enactment of the budget and the conclusion of the ordinary Diet session came the G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit. With all that, the days have rushed by.
I believe that the staff of the Prime Minister's Office enjoyed a good period of rest during my brief holiday. On some occasions over the past ten months, they have been sacrificing their own holidays in the cause of their work.
In my case, even though I was on holiday, I, quite frankly, could not sit still when I began thinking about how I should tackle the policy issues that directly affect the people's lives, including the surge in the prices of gasoline and other fuels, and of foodstuffs and other household necessities, as well as social security-related issues, such as the shortage of doctors.
Yet, I came out of my six-day summer holiday, which included the three-day weekend, reinvigorated; I immediately began responding to policy issues by implementing emergency measures to cope with the surge in the price of crude oil, compiling the Five-Point Reassurance Plan, and drawing up an action plan for achieving a low-carbon society, among other measures.
"Should this autumn bring rain or storm, I know not; my duty for today is to weed the paddy field."
These are the words of Ninomiya Sontoku, of the Edo Period, who dedicated himself to revitalizing farming villages by introducing thorough practicality. Some of you may know of him from the famous bronze statue showing him reading a book while carrying firewood on his back.
How can we create a Japan in which the people can live their lives with a sense of reassurance and truly feel happy? How can we resolve global environmental issues so that our children can inherit a beautiful Earth?
Aiming to secure the future of Japan and the world, it is essential that we have our sights set squarely on tackling today's issues one by one. Beginning with the extraordinary Diet session, the journey toward the realization of our policies will continue to be far from easy, but I will focus my efforts to the best of my ability on what I should do now.
* Profile of the Prime Minister
<1ch> Prime Minister
- 1st Day of the G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit-Japan-UK Summit Meeting, Japan-Germany Summit Meeting, etc.
- 2nd Day of the G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit-G8 Working Sessions, Commemorative Tree Planting, etc.
- 3rd Day of the G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit-Outreach Working Session, Major Economies, etc.
- Press Conference by Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda - July 9, 2008
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- Council for Reforming the Ministry of Defense (July 15, 2008)
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