Major news from the Japanese elections:
TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese voters swept the opposition to a historic victory in an election on Sunday, ousting the ruling conservative party and handing the untested Democrats the job of breathing life into a struggling economy.
The win by the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) ended a half-century of almost unbroken rule by the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and breaks a deadlock in parliament, ushering in a government that has promised to focus spending on consumers, cut wasteful budget outlays and reduce the power of bureaucrats.
Holy fucking shit, Batman!
For those of you who haven't read a (soon-to-be-revised) textbook on Japanese politics, here's a brief primer: the Liberal Democratic Party is the conservative one, and the Democratic Party of Japan is the slightly less conservative one with a few liberals sprinkled in. I'll let any actual Japanese readers give us a less-simplistic rundown of the two.
If you're wondering why I'm a bit shocked, look at it this way: fifty years is a long time for any party to enjoy nearly unbroken power, but the LDP has been in power pretty much since the day the Empire ended.
Japan's going to be a mighty interesting place politically in the next few years...