Archive for Italian Behavior

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.

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.

Naples stinks

Posted in Daily Life, Paradoxes, Stupidity with tags , , , , , , on May 29, 2008 by Cicero

The trash crisis in Naples is an emblematic example of how things work (or not) in Italy.

In simple terms, the so called emergenza rifiuti (trash crisis) means that since Dec/2007 the city of Naples is not collecting trash properly. As a consequence, tons of uncollected trash are dispersed along city streets, causing many problems to the residents.

Regarding the emergenza rifiuti, we have the typical Italian approach to problem solving:

  • Everybody complains about the problem;
  • Everybody agrees that such crisis is unacceptable;
  • Everybody suspects that Mafia (in this case Camorra) is involved;
  • Everybody has a strong opinion on how to solve the situation;
  • Nobody does anything to effectively solve the problem;

At the bottom line, everybody sees the problem as something inevitable and unsolvable. The problem becomes something naturally permanent. And nobody needs to take care of it. It is amazing, isn’t it?

But, what is really behind the trash crisis?

  • Naples’ dumps are now full. Although that takes years to happen, the city was unable to prepare new dumps or other alternatives during this period.
  • The trash collecting system is somehow controlled by Camorra.
  • Citizens from the neighbor cities do not want to receive Naples trash, a solution that was used before, but is considered short-lived.
  • The Italian governments, local, regional and national, are paralyzed.

The emergenza rifiuti is not something unexpected neither new. It is not a natural disaster. It is not something complex to solve. It requires some planning, some good sense and a lot of willingness to work. But to Italy it is like to send a man to Jupiter. Trash crisis shows how Italy is running fast toward Third World.