Archive for the Politics Category

Italian war on terror

Posted in History, Paradoxes, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Aug 17, 2008 by Cicero
Aldo Moro kidnaped

Aldo Moro kidnaped by terrorists

One of the most intriguing aspects of the Italian society is its ability to produce unbearable arrangements and to treat them as something normal.

Comparing the aftermaths of two similar events, one in US and other in Italy, one could easily see that the Italian rule of law is something quite particular…

Let’s go for the facts:

In 1981, John Hinkley Jr. shot twice Ronald Reagan, then the US president. Hinckley Jr. was prosecuted, but as declared legally insane, he did not go to the prison. Nevertheless, since then he is locked inside an psychiatric hospital, with no parole, no mercy.

In 1977, leftist terrorists kidnapped Aldo Moro, a former Italian prime minister, and then a top politician. After 55 days, Aldo Moro was killed with 10 rounds, while tied with ropes and covered with a blanket. The killer was Mario Moretti, who was later arrested and condemned to six life sentences. But after 15 years behind bars, he was paroled and freed in 1998. Now he works as an state employee, managing an IT lab at the Lombardy region.

Stating things even more clearly, Mario Moretti:

  • Cowardly killed a human being;
  • Attempted to destroy Italian democracy, targeting to transform Italy into a communist country;
  • Attacked the Italian state and the Italian people, not only a politician;
  • Was condemned to six life sentences;
  • Now works for the Italian government, receiving money from the same entity he tried to destroy.

At the same time, almost every city in Italy has a park, a street or a building called Aldo Moro. In Italy, it seems to be easier to honor Aldo Moro’s memory with a fancy inauguration than to make justice prevails. The arrangement is this: everybody feigns a normal life while the terrorist is rewarded.

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Intriguing questions…

Posted in History, Paradoxes, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Aug 02, 2008 by Cicero

Italy is famous for its ruins, castles and remains of societies which existed here centuries ago. Much more than that, Italy, besides Greece, is the birthplace of the Western civilization. Although today’s Italy is truly ridiculous, there is a fantastic heritage. So, what happened to this country?

Traveling throughout the past, one can find numerous Italians who shaped the world as we know it: Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Alessandro Volta, Dante Alighieri, Vivaldi, Verdi, Marco Polo, Columbus, Machiaveli… The list could continue, but the question remains: where are their partners in the modern Italy? Certainly Enrico Fermi, Toscanini, Gramsci, Fellini… But anyone would concede that Italy has lost its wisdom somewhere in the past.

More than that, what is the “greatest” Italian contribution to the world, recently? It is hard to admit, but that was the Fascism. Benito Mussolini created one of the three political beasts which hammered humanity during last century. Fascism, besides Nazism and Communism, was a plague which ruined so many lives and whose harmful affects remained during generations.

Nevertheless, prior to continue, I have to pay a tribute to the numerous Italians who strongly resisted to the Fascism, some of them even paying the highest price, their own lives. But their tremendous efforts could not change History: Fascism was an Italian invention, unfortunately.

And the most scaring aspect of Fascism in Italy is that the monster is still alive. I mean, from one side, Italy is not ashamed of Fascism as it should be (just compare to current Germany’s attitude towards Nazism). And from other side, there are Italian politicians who are openly fascists while the Italian people pretend they are not. Umberto Bossi, Roberto Maroni and Lega Nord, for instance, what are their beliefs?

  • Segregation, based on race: gypsies registered and classified (like Jewish people under Nazis)
  • There is always a scapegoat for Italian failures: immigrants (again a Nazi behaviour)
  • Recollection of some ancient symbol in order to grab some credibility: chivalric symbols (Mussolini used fasces)
Umberto Bossi and a dearest friend

Umberto Bossi and a dearest friend

While I see Italian past, and wonder about Italy’s future, I simply can not stop asking. How much time Italy will have to suffer? Where are the modern partisans who will fight these new fascists?

Berlusconi crooking Italian people

Posted in Politics, Stupidity, TV with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Jul 25, 2008 by Cicero

Unfortunately, now and before, Silvio Berlusconi uses the Italian state to fulfill his personal agenda, not linked to the interests of the Italian people. But it is fair to argue I am just throwing opinions, not substantiated by facts. For that reason I will pinpoint some:

  • Most media tycoons expand globally their businesses. So, why does Berlusconi’s Mediaset is almost completely located in Italy? The answer is simple: in Italy he has the connections to succeed, no matter how inefficient his businesses are. Outside Italy, he would depend on his business acumen and organization quality, which are far from good, indeed.
  • Italian public prosecutors have been hunting Berlusconi for his business practices since 1997. The decreto sicurezza, recently proposed and approved by the Berlusconi government, contains laws conceived to protect him from being investigated and prosecuted.
  • Rete 4, a TV channel part of Mediaset, was fined by European Union for wrongly using a TV frequency, which should be allocated to Europa 7. But with the Italian government support, Rete 4 continues to use the unauthorized frequency. This costs €150,000 per day to the Italian people. At the end of this process the fine can reach more than one billion euro.

Silvio Berlusconi will continue to make the Italian state to pay for his debts and to support his businesses expansion. The pinnacle of the stupidity is that Berlusconi has the approval from Italian people.

Welcome to the club, White House!

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , on Jul 10, 2008 by Cicero
Il Presidente del Consiglio, Silvio Berlusconi

Il Presidente del Consiglio: Berlusconi

Now it is official: Berlusconi is recognized as a corrupt leader by US government, finally. Even after all apologies, nobody can denies the deeds…

The facts: at the end of 2008 G8 summit, in Japan, the White House issued a press release containing a Berlusconi biography. The issue was that this biography was extremely negative, even offensive to Berlusconi, Italy and the Italian people. Of course the White House promptly acknowledged the mistake and send apologies to all involved.

But the bottom line is, no matter how many apologies, the real Berlusconi was unveiled to the world. Although he can still block Italian media, he can not do the same with the rest of the world. Now the world can see that Berlusconi is in fact a thug, not a media tycoon; that his fortune was made based on his political connections, not on his business acumen. The world can examine his fascist connections. The world will be closer to the truth. And nobody hates the truth more than Berlusconi.

And, accordingly to the White House, Silvio Berlusconi:

  • is hated by many;
  • is a political dilettante;
  • gained power through his control of media;
  • is one of the most controversial leaders of Italy, a country known for corruption and vice.

Now it is official, no one can deny.

By the way, I received some justifiable complains, stating this post contained nudity. Respecting those observations I have changed the post’s main image. But considering how many nude prostitutes there are in the Italian streets, I wonder how a nude Berlusconi can shock anyone. Nevertheless, I removed the most offensive portion of the image. I hope you do not mind: it was a very small stuff, anyway.

Italian police: more flavors, further inefficiency

Posted in Paradoxes, Politics, Stupidity with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Jun 23, 2008 by Cicero

Some time ago I’ve posted some comments about Italian police. Quite frankly, I was surprised with so much interest. So, I decided to further explore this subject. And, as I expected, I found even more funny stuff. I mean, Italy is an unlimited source of stupidity.

After my research, the conclusion was: Italian police organization is so arcane, that it does not operate properly. Not even by accident.

Like I posted before, there are five (!) national police branches in Italy. But each police force is under the authority of a different minister. And as Italy has a weak parliamentary system, each minister can be from a different party or group. One does not need to be brilliant to conclude that coordination among the Italian police forces is remarkably complex, maybe impossible.

Currently, there are:

  • Polizia di Stato, under the Ministero dell’Interno.
  • Carabinieri, under the Ministero della Difesa.
  • Guardia di Finanza is under the Ministero dell’Economia e delle Finanze.
  • Polizia Penitenziaria, under the Ministro della Giustizia.
  • Corpo Forestale dello Stato is under the Ministero dell’Ambiente e della Tutela del Territorio e del Mare.

The Ministero dell’Interno is under the fascist party Lega Nord Padania, all the others under the party Il Popolo della Libertà.

This structure is the best expression of Italy’s savoir-faire: nothing makes sense, neither works properly. Five overlapping and non-coordinated police forces, all with military organization, to deal with civilian duties.

To make things even worse, each police force is further divided into specialized divisions, generating more overlaps and more confusion. For instance, within the Polizia di Stato, among other divisions, there are:

  • Polizia Stradale: patrols the highway system;
  • Polizia Ferroviaria: patrols the railroad system;
  • Polizia Postale: assures the letters and telegrams behave well!

The overlaps are so huge and the waste of resources is so obvious that only in Italy such arrangement could exist. Just to illustrate, the Guardia di Finanza has a naval branch (!), which obviously overlaps with Italian Coast Guard.

Here there are the sailors (!) from Guardia di Finanza:

Naval branch from Guardia di Finanza

And here their ships:

Fastboats from Guarda di Finanza

By the way, here, a fashion police force needs to have boats (in the order, Polizia di Stato, Carabinieri, Guardia di Finanza and Polizia Penitenziaria):

Boat from Polizia di StatoBoat from Carabinieri
Boat from Guarda di FinanzaBoat from Polizia Penitenziaria

Everyone who understands a bit about organization management, recognizes that having similar structures dealing with similar problems, it is a waste of resources. More than that, those similar structures tend to compete with each other, instead of to collaborate. Without an unified command and control, Italian police forces will never work in a coordinated way.

With so many specialized police branches, I wonder why there is no police branch dedicated to fight Mafia.

Embracing the reality: Italy needs immigration

Posted in Economics, Immigration, Paradoxes, Politics with tags , , , , , , , on Jun 21, 2008 by Cicero

Let’s face it. Italy is an old country, not only considering its history, but also considering its current population. Comparing Italy’s population to that of one of the BRICs (Brazil), it is evident that both countries are in different phases, considering population distribution.

Italy - population pyramid

Brazil - population pyramid

DTM (Demographic Transition) is a model used to explain how a population behaves during the time. This model has five stages in which a country population can be placed. The Stage Five has countries whose populations are reproducing below their replacement levels. Clearly speaking, countries unable to produce enough children to replace their parents, in the future.

Italy is in Stage Five. Without a significant immigration effort, the Italian population will soon begin to fall, with obvious geopolitical and economical consequences.

Italy will soon be unable to produce wealth for its next generations. Without a smart immigration policy Italy will be unable to cope with future changes, to innovate.

Italy will continue shrink in power, wealth and intelligence.

Italian political environment

Posted in Immigration, Politics, Stupidity with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 27, 2008 by Cicero

Politics is inherently confusing. If you add to it the Italian flavor, be prepared to enter into another dimension…

Italy has a parliamentary system, like many other European countries. But as usual, Italy has a remarkable complex political environment. There are more than 20 parties. As a result, no party has chance of gaining power alone. So, every single government depends on a sophisticated arrangement of coalitions. You do not need to be a genius to realize that this approach can not work in a place like Italy…

During last April it was elected the new Italian government. It is the 62nd government since 1946. Thus the country had an average of one new government per year. No chance! It is impossible to set-up and pursuit long terms goals within this ever changing context.

Another dangerous element is again present in Italian politics: right-wing populism. The platform of the insidious Lega Nord: you can blame immigrants for every single Italian problem. Just check the campaign outdoor reproduced below. If your Italian is not so good, the text says something like: They sufered with the immigration. Now they live inside reservations! It is evident that Lega Nord foments xenophobia. What to say about racism? Maybe… Fascist Italy? Again?

Lega Nord native