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Aso Cabinet E-mail Magazine No.16 (January 29, 2009)

"Flowers to blossom in the spring"
-- Message from the Prime Minister
(Provisional Translation)

Prime Minister Taro AsoProfile Japanese

Last November, I received a letter from a 20-year-old woman from Kamimachi, Miyagi Prefecture. In her letter, she asked me to send new adults a message for the next Coming-of-Age Day.

What amazed me was her initiative. I was very happy to receive such a request, so I sent her the following message.

The beautiful Asian skunk cabbage in Kamimachi endures the winter to blossom pretty flowers in the spring. There may be times when you new adults face great obstacles in life, but a flower-blossomed spring always awaits you. You are the ones who build the future of this country. The question is not how Japan will become, but what we ourselves will do. It all depends on your will and motivation.

That was the message I sent.

Later, I received a letter from her saying that she read out my message at her Coming-of-Age ceremony. She wrote, "I have been able to enter adulthood with the resolve to stand up and take Japan forward."

I was deeply moved because what I had most wanted to convey had in fact been conveyed. What's more, I was glad to receive such a polite thank-you note. To convey thoughts accurately is crucial. I value this e-mail magazine as an important way for me to directly convey my thoughts to you.

The second supplementary budget of fiscal 2008 was passed in the Diet. As soon as possible, I want to translate the economic countermeasures into action. As much as possible, I want to bring prosperity to people's lives. We are thus preparing numerous countermeasures to assist people's daily lives, including measures to make maternity checkups essentially free-of-charge, to raise the one-off childbirth and child-rearing allowance to 420,000 yen, and to reduce highway tolls.

Furthermore, I strongly hope to provide a fixed-sum stipend to the people as soon as possible. Nevertheless, we will not be able to do so if the opposition parties do not vote on related bills to implement the supplementary budget.

These related bills have not yet even been deliberated in the House of Councillors. We are facing a major obstacle; that is, a "dilatory strategy" by the opposition parties. I do not understand why they feel they must cause such a delay.

I will never give up. The steady implementation of the economic countermeasures will bring "spring" to Japan. With the resolve to endure any kind of situation, I will make the utmost efforts to ensure that the "flowers" of prosperity blossom when the spring comes to our nation.

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General Editor: Prime Minister Taro Aso
Chief Editor: Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Jun Matsumoto
Publication: Cabinet Public Relations Office
1-6-1 Nagata-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8968, Japan

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