Yomiuri Shimbun June 2008 Opinion Poll (08-09)

Yomiuri Shimbun June 2008 Opinion Poll

Dates Conducted

June 14 and 15, 2008

Methodology

Yomiuri conducted the poll in individual interviews on June 14 and 15, 2008, using a stratified two-stage random sample of 3,000 voters in 250 different locations. 1,827 people, or 60.9% of those selected, responded.

Key Issues

  • Evaluation of the Fukuda Administration/Cabinet
  • Environmental issues
  • Health issues/”metabolic checkup”

Disclaimer

The Mansfield Foundation is responsible for the translation of this Yomiuri Shimbun poll, subject to the Mansfield Foundation Terms of Use.

 

Survey

Q1. Do you support or not support the Fukuda Cabinet?

Support 25.1% (26.1)
Do not support 63.4% (64.7)
Other 2.7% (2.2)
Do not know; No answer 8.8% (7.0)

Figures in parentheses are results from polls conducted in May 2008

 

SQ1. [Those who answered “support” to Q1 only]

Please select up to two reasons from the following list for why you support the Fukuda Cabinet:

Positively evaluate its political stance 28.3% (21.7)
Feel that it is stable 19.8% (16.1)
Can trust the Prime Minister 19.8% (27.8)
Its economic policies are promising 5.0% (4.6)
Its foreign policy is promising 10.2% (9.4)
It is a coalition between the Liberal Democratic Party and the Komeito Party 15.7% (15.0)
The Prime Minister is a member of the LDP 29.6% (33.6)
It is better than previous cabinets 11.8% (11.9)
Other; Do not know; No answer 7.4% (6.7)

Figures in parentheses are results from polls conducted in May 2008

 

SQ2. [Those who answered “do not support” to Q1 only]

Please select up to two reasons from the following list for why you do not support the Fukuda Cabinet:

Cannot positively evaluate its political stance 49.6% (47.1)
Do not feel that the cabinet is stable 29.8% (30.9)
Cannot trust the Prime Minister 22.2% (22.8)
Its economic policies are not promising 44.0% (44.6)
Its foreign policy is not promising 6.2% (6.0)
It is a coalition between the Liberal Democratic Party and the Komeito Party 7.2% (5.1)
The Prime Minister is a member of the LDP 4.4% (3.6)
It is worse than previous cabinets 11.1% (11.7)
Other; Do not know; No answer 2.6% (2.9)

Figures in parentheses are results from polls conducted in May 2008

 

Q2. From following list, please select all applicable issues, if any, that you would like the Fukuda Cabinet to prioritize:

Economic conditions and job security 54.1%
Fiscal reconstruction 24.7%
Tax reform and the issue of the consumption tax 35.7%
Social security reform, including pensions and healthcare 61.9%
Support for child care and countermeasures for declining birthrates 27.4%
Education reform 17.5%
Problems of income disparities 22.6%
Administrative reform, such as cutting back the number of government employees 21.5%
The problem of money in politics 31.9%
Foreign policy toward Asia, including China and South Korea 9.9%
Issues with North Korea 19.5%
National defense and security 7.4%
Constitution reform 4.2%
Disaster prevention and crisis management 10.2%
Public safety and crime prevention 24.1%
Environmental protection 23.4%
Food-safety measures 30.3%
Other; Nothing in particular; Do not know; No answer 3.0%

 

Q3. Which political party do you currently support? Please select one:

Liberal Democratic Party 26.0% (28.5)
Democratic Party of Japan 20.5% (18.4)
New Komeito Party 2.8% (2.1)
Japan Communist Party 2.6% (1.3)
Social Democratic Party of Japan 0.9% (1.3)
The New People’s Party 0.3% (0.2)
The New Party Nippon —–(—–)
Others 0.1% (—–)
Do not support any party 46.0% (47.6)
Do not know; No answer 0.7% (0.7)

Figures in parentheses are results from polls conducted in May 2008

 

Q4. When do you think the House of Representatives should be dissolved and the next general election held? Please select one from the following list:

As soon as possible 33.0%
Within the year 24.8%
Early next year 8.9%
By September 2009, when the current Diet’s term expires 25.0%
Do not know; No answer 8.3%

 

Q5. If an election for the House of Representatives were held today, which party would you vote for in your proportional-representation district? Please select one:

Liberal Democratic Party 25.1%
Democratic Party of Japan 27.5%
New Komeito Party 3.1%
Japan Communist Party 3.1%
Social Democratic Party of Japan 1.7%
The New People’s Party 0.5%
The New Party Nippon 0.1%
Others 0.1%
Undecided 37.7%
Do not know; No answer 1.2%

 

Q6. What type of administration do you currently prefer? Please select one of the following:

The current coalition between the LDP and Komeito 16.3%
Coalition of opposition parties, with the DPJ at its center 20.0%
Single-party LDP administration 5.3%
Single-party DPJ administration 5.6%
Coalition, with the LDP and DPJ at its center 19.3%
An administration with a new structure consisting of realigned ruling and opposition parties 18.1%
Other 0.4%
Do not know; No answer 15.0%

 

Q7. The “medical system for late-stage seniors,” covering people over 75 years of age, asks the elderly to pay a significant part of their own insurance premiums, thereby reducing the burden on younger generations. Do you view this system positively, or not?

Very positively 8.0%
Somewhat positively 27.6%
Not very positively 32.6%
Not at all positively 28.2%
Do not know; No answer 3.6%

 

Q8. The government is considering reform of this medical system for late-stage seniors. While it would not change the system’s fundamentals, it would decrease the burden on lower-income people by reducing their insurance premiums. Do you view this idea positively, or not?

Very positively 17.9%
Somewhat positively 41.1%
Not very positively 22.8%
Not at all positively 15.3%
Do not know; No answer 2.9%

 

Q9. The DPJ and other opposition parties advocate a return to the previous health program for the elderly, saying that the new system places a heavy burden on senior citizens. Do you have a positive view of the opposition parties’ stance, or not?

Very positive view 17.4%
Somewhat positive view 35.9%
Not very positive view 29.4%
Not at all positive view 12.1%
Do not know; No answer 5.2%

 

Q10. In winning passage of the “Civil Service Reform Act,” one of the signature pieces of legislation in this Diet session, Prime Minister Fukuda accommodated many of the DPJ’s amendment requests. Do you positively evaluate Mr. Fukuda’s actions, or not?

Very positive evaluation 16.0%
Somewhat positive evaluation 42.4%
Not very positive evaluation 21.7%
Not at all positive evaluation 9.4%
Do not know; No answer 10.5%

 

Q11. This “Civil Service Reform Act” includes changes in the way that civil servants are hired and how they are assigned. Do you think that the passage of this piece of legislation will advance reform of the civil-service system, or not?

Yes 30.4%
No 58.8%
Do not know; No answer 10.8%

 

Q12. The “Consumer Agency” will be inaugurated next year. It will be set up to respond to wide-ranging consumer inquiries about the safety of food and other products, contract problems, and other issues. Do you think that creating this Consumer Agency will result in a government that places more importance on consumers than in the past, or not?

Yes 45.9%
No 45.7%
Do not know; No answer 8.4%

 

Q13. In comparing actions taken on recent political issues by Prime Minister Fukuda with those taken by DPJ President Ozawa, whom do you support?

Prime Minister Fukuda 34.8%
President Ozawa 35.6%
Do not know; No answer 29.6%

 

Q14. The recent regular session of the Diet was the first ever full-fledged session of a “divided Diet.” The Diet is split between the House of Representatives, in which the ruling party has a majority, and the House of Councilors, in which opposition parties are the majority.

SQ1. Do you think that this session of the Diet was capable of functioning as a venue for deciding important policies of the state, or not?

Yes 17.2%
No 73.2%
Do not know; No answer 9.6%

 

SQ2. Overall, do you positively evaluate the actions of the LDP during this session of the Diet, or not?

Very positive evaluation 3.3%
Somewhat positive evaluation 23.4%
Not very positive evaluation 43.4%
Not at all positive evaluation 22.3%
Do not know; No answer 7.5%

 

S3. Overall, do you positively evaluate the actions of the DPJ during this session of the Diet, or not?

Very positive evaluation 4.3%
Somewhat positive evaluation 29.1%
Not very positive evaluation 41.2%
Not at all positive evaluation 17.7%
Do not know; No answer 7.7%

 

Q15. With the support of the DPJ and other parties, the House of Councilors adopted a censure resolution against Prime Minister Fukuda. Unlike a resolution of no confidence against the cabinet in the House of Representatives, however, it is not legally binding. Do you think that this censure resolution, as a clear expression of the House of Councilors’ intentions, was meaningful? Or do you think that it was meaningless, since it has no legal force?

Meaningful 36.2%
Meaningless 50.2%
Do not know; No answer 13.5%

 

Q16. On a different topic, destruction of the environment on a global scale—as seen in global warming, damage from acid rain and diminishing numbers of wild animals and plants—is becoming an issue. Are you concerned about the future of the earth’s environment, or not?

Very concerned 63.9%
Somewhat concerned 29.2%
Not very concerned 5.5%
Not at all concerned 1.1%
Do not know; No answer 0.3%

 

Q17. From the following list of changes in the environment, which especially concern you on a daily basis, if any?

Global warming caused by increasing carbon dioxide from the consumption of oil and coal 74.3%
Destruction of the ozone layer caused by chlorofluorocarbons in the atmosphere 43.8%
Pollution of rivers, lakes, wetlands and the ocean caused by wastewater from households, factories and oil tankers 39.5%
Radioactive pollution from accidents and incidents at nuclear power plants 30.9%
Desiccation of forests and acidification of lakes due to acid rain 35.7%
Fewer natural resources due to excessive logging in tropical forests 44.8%
Fewer wild animals due to destruction of the natural environment 42.1%
Pollution of the environment by dioxin and other chemical substances 42.9%
Other 0.3%
Nothing special; Do not know; No answer 3.2%

 

Q18. Is there anything you do on a regular basis for the earth’s environment, or not?

Yes 85.0%
No 14.6%
Don’t know; No answer 0.4%

 

SQ1. [Those who answered “yes” to Q18 only]

From the following list, please select all things that you do on a regular basis for the earth’s environment:

Use air conditioning and heating conservatively, and make sure to turn them off 62.4%
Take care to turn off electric products, and pull plugs out of wall sockets [when not in use] 48.6%
Take care not to leave tap water running 72.0%
Carry my own bag to the store and say no to excessive wrapping 50.2%
Buy environmentally-friendly products and goods 22.5%
Use a car less often, and turn off the motor rather than letting it idle 29.6%
Separate the garbage, and recycle newspapers and empty cans 77.9%
Reduce household waste water such as oil and detergents 33.8%
Other; Do not know; No answer 0.6%

 

Q19. Do you think that if each individual were concerned about protecting the global environment and acted accordingly, we might be effective in addressing the issue, or not?

Very effective 62.1%
Somewhat effective 32.5%
Not very effective 4.4%
Not effective at all 0.8%
Do not know; No answer 0.3%

 

Q20. Please select the statement that is closest to your views on economic development and protection of the natural environment.

Economic development should be the priority 5.4%
Protecting nature and the environment is important, but economic development should be the priority 16.3%
Economic development is important, but protecting nature and the environment should be the priority 57.5%
Protecting nature and the environment should be the priority 17.7%
Do not know; No answer 3.2%

 

Q21. Do you think that Japan should leverage its outstanding environmental technology to play a larger role in protecting the earth’s environment, or not?

Yes 93.3%
No 4.5%
Do not know; no answer 2.2%

 

Q22. One of the main topics of the G-8 Summit to be held in Toyako, Hokkaido in July will be environmental issues, such as global warming. Do you expect that there will be progress on measures to deal with global warming as a result of the summit, or not?

Very much so 42.6%
Somewhat 37.1%
Not much 15.5%
Not at all 3.4%
Do not know; No answer 1.5%

 

Q23. Please give your opinion on the following questions about carbon dioxide and other “greenhouse gases” that cause global warming.

SQ1. Do you think that the leading industrialized nations should be given mandatory numerical targets for greenhouse-gas reduction?

Yes 86.9%
No 7.8%
Do not know; No answer 5.3%

 

SQ2. What do you think should be done to reduce greenhouse gases in developing countries? Please select one from the following list:

As with the leading industrialized countries, developing countries should be given mandatory targets 34.0%
The decision on whether to mandate numerical targets should be based on each country’s level of emissions and other factors 54.1%
There is no need for mandates 7.6%
Other 0.2%
Do not know; No answer 4.2%

 

Q24. To reduce carbon dioxide and preserve green areas, the national and local governments could levy a new tax, the so-called “environment tax,” and use the proceeds for the environment, to prevent global warming or to plant new forests. Are you in favor or opposed to this idea?

In favor 42.9%
Opposed 29.9%
Can’t say 26.2%
Do not know; No answer 1.1%

 

Q25. Do you think that no matter how much science and technology develops, the power of mankind will never eclipse the forces of nature, or not?

Yes 85.7%
No 11.7%
Do not know; no answer 2.6%

 

Q26. Do you feel a sense of awe for nature, or not?

Yes 91.2%
No 6.1%
Do not know; no answer 2.7%

 

Q27. The following questions are about staying healthy. Do you feel that your state of health is generally good, or not?

Good 29.2%
More or less good 41.1%
More or less bad 20.7%
Bad 7.7%
Do not know; No answer 1.3%

 

Q28. Is there anything about your health that concerns you lately? Please select as many as you like from the following list:

Worsening eyesight 39.4%
Worsening hearing 10.6%
Cavities or gingivitis 15.4%
Trouble sleeping or lack of sleep 12.8%
Stress 28.7%
Fatigue 28.1%
Stiff shoulders, back or joint pain 38.6%
Headaches or dizziness 8.4%
Heart palpitations or shortness of breath 4.8%
High blood pressure 19.5%
Blood sugar level 9.1%
Body fat percentage or obesity 24.8%
Stomach aches or bloating 7.5%
Constipation or diarrhea 8.7%
Excessive sensitivity to cold, or poor blood circulation 14.1%
Other 0.8%
Nothing in particular 13.0%
Do not know; no answer 0.3%

 

Q29. What do you do on a regular basis to maintain or improve your health? Please select as many as you like from the following list:

Receive a regular health checkup 47.3%
Exercise, such as jogging 27.7%
Reduce or cut out alcohol consumption 15.7%
Change diet or other habits 28.8%
Take interest in health-related books, news and conversation 30.4%
Improve personal life by getting more sleep, etc. 19.5%
Other 0.6%
Nothing in particular 16.5%
Do not know; No answer 0.1%

 

Q30. Do you think about the nutritional balance of the food that you usually eat, or not?

Yes 36.4%
Somewhat 41.9%
Not much 17.8%
Not at all 3.7%
Do not know; No answer 0.2%

 

SQ1. [Those who answered “yes” or “somewhat” to Q30 only]

From the following list, please select things that you are especially careful to do, if any:

Eat plenty of vegetables 79.5%
Cut back on food quantity and calories 42.8%
Cut back on sodium 56.0%
Cut back on fatty foods 55.2%
Cut back on sweets 26.9%
Consume dietary supplements and health foods 15.7%
Other 0.5%
Do not know; No answer 0.3%

 

Q31.  Do you smoke? Please select one of the following:

Every day 21.8%
From time to time 4.4%
Former smoker 22.2%
Never smoked 51.6%
Do not know; No answer 0.1%

 

SQ1. [Those who answered “every day” or “from time to time” to Q31 only]

Do you intend to quit smoking, or not? Please select one of the following:

No intention to quit 30.9%
No intention to quit, but do want to cut down 20.0%
Want to quit, but cannot 21.1%
Intend to quit at some point 27.8%
Do not know; No answer 0.2%

 

Q32.The following questions are about the so-called “metabolic checkup,” an examination to look for evidence of “metabolic syndrome,” or fat deposits surrounding the internal organs, which can lead to diabetes, arterial sclerosis and other lifestyle-related diseases.

SQ1. One of the principal criteria established in the metabolic checkup is a waist size of more than 85 centimeters for men and more than 90 centimeters for women, regardless of height. Do you think that this uniform criterion is appropriate, or not?

Appropriate 33.0%
Not appropriate 53.9%
Do not know; No answer 13.1%

 

SQ2. Has the widespread attention given to metabolic syndrome caused you to think more about your own health, or has noting changed?

Think more about my health 46.5%
Nothing has changed 52.5%
Do not know; No answer 1.0%

 

SQ3. Have you changed your diet, begun exercising, or otherwise changed your lifestyle habits in order to ward off metabolic syndrome, or have you made no changes?

 

Have made changes 30.7%
Have not made any changes 68.3%
Do not know; No answer 1.0%

 

SQ4. Now that metabolic checkups have begun, do you think that the public’s health will improve, or not?

Yes 66.4%
No 27.4%
Do not know; No answer 6.2%

 

Fundamental Characteristics of Survey Sample

Gender Distribution

Male 48%
Female 52 %

 

Age Distribution (in years)

20-29 9%
30-39 15%
40-49 16%
50-59 22%
60-69 23%
Over 70 years old 15%

 

City Scale

Large metropolitan areas (Tokyo’s 23 wards and ordinance-designated cities) 23%
Large mid-sized cities (cities with population over 300,000) 19%
Mid-sized cities (cities with population over 100,000) 23%
Small cities (cities with population under 100,000) 24%
Towns and villages 11%

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