Because the article began with a contrast to America, I read it as a brief for a presidential regime until the last three paragraphs. If the DPJ's proposal failed (there are grounds for skepticism), then that may be the last liberal-democratic alternative. In fact, Japan has had a presidential regime since 1947 at the levels of prefectures and below. To the extent that governors have been leading prefectures with the qualities that you attribute to U.S. presidents, it must be because of similar institutions. The Japanese can call the new chief executive "gyosei chokan" or "dajokan" if they want to keep the monarchy.
Why don't you explore and explain more in detail what you mean with "broken institutions" when you pretend that they are the real problem? Does it also include 道州制? Shouldn't we wonder why there is little understanding in Japan of the subsidiarity principle? Or are those "broken institutions" the reason why we could recently read more often about an emerging civil society in Japan?
America only "solved" its leadership problem this November. Britain has a leadership problem, Italy, France, Germany... the list goes on.
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