Majority Win in Japan Points to Shift in Mood, Economy to Follow

One of the trends to look for over the next few years is the emergence of governing majorities. Coalition governments are the norm in many countries, with some unable to form a government or forced into a "grand coalition." In many countries, such as the United States, the result is gridlock and massive battles over insignificant political issues (relatively speaking). Outsider parties running on neglected issues such as trade and immigration are gaining vote share, but will eventually win outright majorities which require no coalition partners, or will have a super majority with coalition partners. This has already occurred in Hungary and Poland.

Japan's politics haven't been as volatile as Europe's, but there too a majority has emerged, one with major implications for East Asia.

SCMP: Japan’s ruling bloc wins landslide in upper house election, exit polls show. The subheading is:
PM Abe’s LDP gets simple majority for first time since 1989
What happened in 1989 in Japan? Japanese social mood peaked and then entered a three-decade depression. This election is a big red flag, signaling that trend could be over/ending.

The signal will be stronger if the win delivers more than a simply majority:
Some of the exit polls also showed Abe’s coalition and like-minded parties had won the two-thirds “super majority” needed to try to revise the post-war constitution for the first time, though others only said the threshold was within reach.
The vote totals aren't final though. Japan's ruling bloc wins big in Upper House election
As of midnight local time (11pm Singapore time), the coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and Komeito won 66 of the 121 seats up for grabs.

Add that to the bloc's 76 seats not being contested this time round, and it has a total of 142 seats in the 242-member chamber. Together with other allies, it holds 156 seats, with seven yet to be determined.

This puts Mr Abe within striking distance of the 162 seats he needs to win a two-thirds supermajority, to push for a national referendum to revise the Constitution.
Whether or not the supermajority comes through, the trend is evident. I expect to see similar results across the developed world in the coming years, either in response to the depression (think 1930s) or as mood turns up (think early 1980s).

Update: The coalition has the supermajority. Japan's ruling bloc wins landslide in upper house election

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