Switch to Offense! RENGO 6.15 Tokyo Mass Mobilization
4600 Attendees Gather Nationwide to Correct Disparities
19 June 2006
RENGO’s Statement by General Secretary Koga
Lawmaker Hatoyama and President Takagi participating in the session
Demand action on lawmakers
On June 15th, RENGO held its "Switch to Offense! RENGO 6.15 Tokyo Mass Mobilization" at the Tokyo International Forum. Since last year RENGO has continued to work on a campaign against tax increases that targets salaried workers in every part of the country. "Disparity Correction 431" (for the total number of RENGO local councils) is the name that RENGO gave to the activity that developed out of that campaign into a struggle against Japan’s disparity society and the increase-in-burdens/ decrease-in-provisions policy. RENGO mobilized the nation’s anger from local RENGOs and local councils all the way to Tokyo.
In his address,°°RENGO President Takagi urged the participants saying, "We can't let disparities continue to encroach on our incomes, working styles, or our hopes for the future. If the government refuses to make a serious effort to deliver the nation from anxiety and mistrust, then we must redress them with the righteous anger of our nation’s citizens and workers. From now on let RENGO become an angry RENGO; a snarling, biting RENGO. Let us give room to our anger in order to make Japan a safe and secure nation again as soon as possible. We want you to keep channeling your anger strongly from all 431 local councils."
Democratic Party of Japan President Ozawa was in attendance at the rally and pointed out that as a result of the nonsense that the Koizumi administration did can be seen in prevailing inequity, expanding disparities, increasing burdens to the nation and rising anxieties over the future. Expressing his determination, Ozawa also called for cooperation in future elections, "In order to create a fair society, we want to change the administration into one led by the Democratic Party of Japan, redress this society of disparities which is the sad legacy of the Koizumi administration, and bring about real structural reform."
Social Democratic Party leader Fukushima criticized the Koizumi government saying that its discarding of welfare itself is worthy of a vote of non-confidence. Fukushima addressed the audience saying "the problem with our current government is that while everyone ought to be affluent, in reality only a few hold a monopoly on wealth. Let us together with every worker change this government."
Afterward, representatives onstage from local RENGOs, local councils and affiliated organizations answered questions about the characteristics of their activities for "Disparity Correction 431" in each of their own areas and all of the representatives pledged to keep fighting for disparity correction across the nation.
RENGO President Takagi and Democratic Party of Japan Secretary General Hatoyama conducted an impromptu talk on the theme of "correcting disparities: how RENGO and the DPJ switch to offense!" Both RENGO and the DPJ confirmed that they will dedicate themselves to victory in the unified local elections/Upper House elections next year.
Regional blocs conducted a demand action on lawmakers at six separate venues before the rally. Representatives from RENGO regional blocs spoke out about real conditions in their regions requesting support for RENGO priority policies and providing great encouragement to the members of Parliament.