Archive for Italian Stupidity

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.

Poste Italiene and sand grains

Posted in Daily Life, Stupidity with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on Jul 16, 2008 by Cicero

Anyone who lives in Italy will stumble on sand grains. Here, daily life is unnecessarily made complicated, due to the widespread apathy and laziness. Things that are simple and achievable in most part to the world, in Italy are complex endeavors.

Just another day I mailed a package to my home country. To make things clearer, I was not sending any special merchandise, neither my home country is in another planet. I was just sending a medium-sized package with books, documents and photos to Latin America.

Naively, I went to the agency of Poste Italiene, at the small comune where I live. After waiting in a line, I had to follow a complex procedure just to give the package to the post office guy. As the post office is also a bank, there were security doors and some other stuff. I guess it is easier to enter a nuclear plant, but rules are rules anyway, and I am quite polite and patient. Well, after weighting the package, the guy told me that he would be out for lunch within 5 minutes and that amount of time would not be enough to process the package. Then he gave me some forms and asked me to come back later in the afternoon. I was astonished: that was the first case of preemptive lunch time that I have ever seen. In fact, that’s a clear example of the Italian laziness.

As I have stamina, I went to the second post office agency. After making me to wait in a line, they told me that their weighing machine was damaged, and there was no way to send the package. By the way, they also said the weighing machine was out of order since the previous week. That’s a typical example of the Italian apathy.

Full of energy I went to another post office agency, the third, and I was successful, finally.

Well it was a success, but it was not easy. I mean, it is normal to face some bureaucracy, when one mails a package to another country. But in Italy things are always prolix. So, after once again waiting in a long line:

  • I had to fill-up three forms, in of them I have to mention how many photos I was sending;
  • Post office people made copies of my id and social security (tessera sanitaria) card;

There are inevitable security measures, which all of us have to accept, mostly in the present times, but that was just bureaucracy. More than that, people at the post office did not even verified the package contents. And, if I were just a tourist, with no tessera sanitaria? Would I not be allowed to send mail? Their only concern was with the forms. That’s a true example of Italian taste for bureaucracy.

The bottom line: all this process took me about two and half hours. To mail a package at the post office. That is a true history.

As an Italian friend said to me. In Italia c’é sempre qualcosa che no funziona. O é la biliancia o la testa de qualcuno. (In Italy there is always something which does not work. Either the weighting machine, either the head of someone).

Il dottore, an Italian way to waste knowledge

Posted in Daily Life, Stupidity with tags , , , , , , , , , on Jul 09, 2008 by Cicero

In Italy, every pharmacy has a quite special character: il dottore (the doctor). This is usually the business proprietary, who holds a Pharmacy degree. This guy is generally an important figure in the local society, mainly in the small cities.

You might expect it would be nice to have such a highly educated professional to help you at each pharmacy. Well, that would be the case if we were not in Italy, where nothing happens as planned.

I mean, this highly educated person, does only three not so highly complex tasks:

  • Read medical prescriptions in order to identify medicine names;
  • Look for medicine names at boxes placed in alphabetical order;
  • Receive money and give exchange;

This is a typical Italian waste of resources. It mandatory to have a Pharmacy graduated at each Pharmacy doing basic activities, no matter how much their knowledge is needed elsewhere. A clerk would be enough, perhaps with some specific training, but not a degree in Pharmacy.

And now it is clear why there is no big Italian pharmaceutical company. Italy considers more important to place Pharmacy graduated to look for names in boxes, than to use those experts to make drug research. Does it make any sense?

Trash TV: Italian leading edge

Posted in Stupidity, TV with tags , , , , , , , , , , on Jul 05, 2008 by Cicero

Stupid TV shows are not an Italian privilege. In any part of the world you can find TV attractions where people do any absurd to get their 15 minutes of fame. What gives Italy a special distinction is how trash TV is well positioned, both in terms of audience and prestige.

An evident example of this garbage is La Corrida, from Canale 5, where amateurs present their special abilities and are evaluated by the crowd. As you can imagine, this kind of show tends to be really funny. But in Italy they crossed the line between funny and lack of humane respect.

The show is hosted by Gerry Scotti and the beautiful Michela Coppa. Their mission is to present weird stuff and make the attenders look like complete idiots. Quite frankly, it seems they present some mentally challenged people just to mock at them. This is completely unacceptable.

Here there is one of the attenders dancing. One wonders how much pain this poor lady had suffered the day following her presentation.

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.