Although Aso cabinet is incredibly unpopular, it’s good for one thing: providing lots of humor. Every night Aso or member(s) of his cabinet issues some kind of explanation or retraction of previous remarks that others have “misunderstood”. Sometimes I wonder if they’re really Japanese since none of them seem to be able to speak Japanese language that the citizens can understand. Aso is so bad that he makes Bush sound eloquent by comparison.
So what is the recent “typical” screw-up?
Japan’s Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa appeared drunk and incoherent during the G7 meeting in Rome. He denied the allegation, but the Japanese media played the tape and analyzed everything he did (and said) and declared that he must have been intoxicated, esp. since several people pointed out that Nakagawa is fond of drinking and that some call him Nakagawa Sake.
Here’s Nakagawa’s Q&A. You don’t need to speak Japanese to know that he’s totally wasted on the tape. (BTW — his Japanese was so slurred and weird that nobody really understood what he was trying to say.)
Now…you’d think that the Finance Minister from the #2 economy in the world (in terms of GDP) would display more sobriety. Japanese economy shrank by over 12%, and unemployment rate along with suicide rate is rising rapidly right now.
BTW — the latest poll showed that Aso cabinet approval rating is currently at 9.7%. Maybe it’s time for Prime Minister Aso to resign. Aso’s been in charge for less than six months, but still…
P.S. Nakagawa said he’d only resign if Aso asked. He also declared that his performance in Rome didn’t do anything to harm Japan’s standing. The opposition disagreed and demanded his immediate removal. We’ll see how Aso responds. (Aso and Nakagawa are close friends.)