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Japanese Minister's "Drunken" Display

There are, in this economy, a million reasons you would expect a finance minister to resign. This, however, is not one of them: Shoichi Nakagawa of Japan announced he would step down from the finance ministry at the end of the year due to the furor over his apparent drunkenness at last weekend’s G7 summit on Rome. Since slurring his words and sleepily blinking his eyes at a press conference there, several other stories have surfaced about Nakagawa’s behavior: “he has, for example, been spotted bumping into the doorframes along the corridors of power,” according to the Times of London. Also: “Video footage has also surfaced of an incident in parliament in 2006 when Mr Nakagawa stopped speaking during a speech and stood silent and virtually motionless for about half a minute before sitting down. At the time, he blamed medicine he was taking for back pain.” Mr. Nakagawa claims that jetlag and cough syrup did him in at the Rome press conference, though said he might seek help to “prevent myself doing any further damage.”