Japan Tee Time for the Threesome

A trio of contenders putt for the prime ministership

Kintaro-ame, a traditional Japanese candy cane, is a frequently used metaphor for explaining the policy views of leaders of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party. Snap a stick of Kintaro-ame in several places and the identical face of Kintaro, a folk hero, can be seen inside. Snap open the position papers of various L.D.P. officials, and they all look the same.

Thus when three L.D.P. leaders officially declared last week that they were candidates for the presidency of their party, little attention was paid to their policy papers. Never mind that one of the three candidates will become Prime Minister, succeeding Yasuhiro...

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