Recent reports have noted that MAFF Minister Toshikatsu Matsuoka, a powerful LDP figure recently embroiled in a political funds scandal, hanged himself at an official Lower House residence in the Akasaka area of Tokyo at around midnight May 28.
As of earlier today, MAFF officials had not confirmed the reports from wire services and were reportedly as shocked to hear the news as this blogger is.
The Tokyo Metropolitan Police stated that Matsuoka was found by his personal secretary and a security guard in the living room of the apartment, where he was hanging from a dog leash tied to a metal fixture on a door. He was rushed to Keio University Hospital but died of his injuries.
From FT and Reuters:
”This will have serious political fallout, but at this point it’s hard to tell how much,” a government official told Reuters.
Matsuoka — under fire for a series of political funding scandals — was found unconscious in his room at a residential complex for lawmakers in Tokyo, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuhisa Shiozaki told reporters.
Media said Matsuoka had hanged himself in his room. Police later confirmed had died in hospital.
Local media had linked Matsuoka to at least two political fund scandals including one involving massive, dubious spending on his office near parliament.
Last week media also reported that he had received political donations from businessmen involved in a bid-rigging scandal.
Matsuoka had repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.
8 thoughts on “Agriculture Minister Matsuoka DEAD in suicide”
Abe is in serious trouble now.
“hanged himself” should be “hung himself” I think.
Nope, it’s hanged. “Hung” is passive voice, as in “I was hung out to dry,” but “hanged is the past tense of “to hang.”
To clarify, ‘hanged’ is the past tense of ‘to hang (execute).’ ‘Hung’ is the past tense of ‘to hang (other meanings).’
Aurelia George Mulgan has just released a book on the guy that I was going to get for a little light holiday reading. Other readers of this blog might now be interested.
I believe the thesis of George Mulgan’s book was that the system of patronage that was entrenched after the 1960s is still alive and well in Japan, no pun intended. Given that Matsuoka was her major case study, I wonder if his suicide is a sign that such behaviour is no longer acceptable. In other words, will George Mulgan have to reconsider her thesis?
MF and Gen: ““Hung” is passive voice, as in “I was hung out to dry,” but “hanged is the past tense of “to hang.””
No – both wrong. It is merely a different verb. The past and past part. of hang as in the neck-stretching kind are both hanged. So in the passive it is still “he was hanged”. See the following example:
“Hussein was hanged for his role in the 1982 Dujail massacre, in which 148 Iraqis were killed after a failed assassination attempt against the then-Iraqi president.”
So there are two verbs:
Generic hang: hang hung hung
Execution hang: hang hanged hanged
Vindicating quote from Nikkei English edition:
“Matsuoka hanged himself in his parliamentary residence Monday. He had been under fire for political money scandals, but had rejected opposition party calls to step down.”
“The photo of the hanged minister was hung on the wall”…. Originally the word was interchangeable, but presumably delicacy in a world where people were often strung up by the neck led to a quasi-euphemistic separation of terms.
Impressive that he was the first since the war – I did not realise that.
“I wonder if his suicide is a sign that such behaviour is no longer acceptable. In other words, will George Mulgan have to reconsider her thesis?”
True.Coincidentaly there is another case popped up in Japan related a cop got busted for
談合.NHK is also making NHK special on 脱談合 this sunday.(June 3)probably under production for months before Matsuoka’s suicide.
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