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Anti-Nuclear Mayor Defeated in Fukushima

SNA (Tokyo) — The following stories were reported today by the Shingetsu News Agency.

The Top Headline

—End of an era in Minami-Soma city, Fukushima Prefecture. Katsunobu Sakurai has been defeated in his reelection bid by a Liberal Democratic Party-backed challenger, Kazuo Momma. The anti-nuclear Mayor Sakurai is one of the best-known faces from the Fukushima Daiichi disaster era.

Politics

—Mocking Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Party of Hope leader Yuichiro Tamaki calls for Japan to “Exit the Meiji Regime.” Tamaki’s basic idea is that focusing on economic growth based on population growth and centralization must be replaced by social security and decentralization.

International

—There are more hints that the Trump administration now wants to turn to the subject of Japan’s trade surplus with the United States, but it remains unclear if Washington is really able to focus on any policy issue in light of the unstable character at the top.

—Mark Zuckerberg announces Facebook feeds will be designed so that less news is shown to users. Moreover, “trustworthy” news sources will be prioritized, something to be judged essentially on the basis of a popularity contest with the general public.

—Latest scheme by the geniuses at the Shinzo Abe Foreign Ministry is to spend time and resources trying to teach developing countries in Africa and elsewhere how to strictly enforce economic sanctions against North Korea.

Society

—Citizens’ group in Fujisawa, Kanagawa, asks the local government to cancel a J-Alert drill planned for January 31. They argue that blaring the sirens is simply a fear-mongering policy with no rational purpose. No one has an idea what they are supposed to do when the siren sounds.

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