Category Archives: Politics

Bloggers of Italy, Unite!

While Europe is facing its toughest challenge since 1929, it seems that priorities are not the same for all countries. Instead of fighting tax evasion to heal the national economy, the Italian government decided to focus on Berlusconi’s problems. Protests have spread across Italy but apparently Mr. Berlusconi knows best: privacy is what the Italians need.

Next Wednesday the Italian Parliament will debate a law that puts several limits on freedom of communication in Italy. The law, which has been proposed by the government, aims to shut bloggers up and prevent newspapers from publishing the content of tapped phone calls (read full text here). Continue reading


Politics says NO to the Italians’ future (again)

Last 13thof June was a big day for Italy, a real breakthrough in the history of the Second Republic. 57% of Italians  voted in a referendum and said no to the re-introduction of nuclear power, to Berlusconi’s legalized judicial immunity and to the privatization of water. The Italian people finally opposed  to the deleterious policy of Berlusconi’s government.  And the significance of this event makes me upset. Let me explain. Continue reading

Italians resist for their constitution

Protests in London - Pizza Politics - click on the picture to see other photos of the protests

After success of pro-women manifestation Se non ora quando?”, one million Italians took the streets to protest in favour of the  Italian Constitution last Saturday.

According to Articolo 21 website, which promoted the event, about one million Italians in 100 Italian cities and abroad protested against the way in which Berlusconi’s government is threatening the Italian Constitution (see London’s protests photos). Continue reading

Italy falling with Gaddafi

Berlusconi and Gaddafi - Wikimedia Commons

In a moment when the whole West was calling for sanctions against Gaddafi’s regime, Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi finally took a position yesterday, saying that “Europe and the West can’t be spectators anymore”.

After calling Libya conditions a “threat for our economy and security”, Berlusconi said yesterday in a statement that “Gaddafi has lost control of the situation” and that Italy could be ready for sanctions against Libya. However, the only spectator in the European scenario over the last week had been Berlusconi himself, who last Tuesday said that the situation was under control as “the people of Libya are granting stability and national security”. Continue reading

Keep Your Eyes Open Italians

Former editor of The Economist Bill Emmott -

There are nights when, after  a long and tiring day spent studying on my desk, I close the eyes and start thinking of the future of my country. I think of an era with no Bunga Bunga, no corruption, no conflict of interests, no Berlusconi.  I think of an Italy led by a strong and honest political coalition. But the dream doesn’t last long. As I realize I can’t visualize that country, I get my feet back on the ground and restart my readings. However, it seems somebody else can see that country. That’s Bill Emmott, former editor of The Economist, who has recently published a book about post-Berlusconi Italy:  Forza, Italia: Come Ripartire dopo Berlusconi ( Come on Italy, how to restart after Berlusconi). Continue reading

Italian Republic for Sale

Last 14-december confidence vote was an exceptional breakthrough for Berlusconi’s private life but only a new reason for shame for Italy. A private victory for Il Cavaliere, a new episode Italians should feel outraged by.

The disgusting compravendita of MPs Berlusconi carried out over the last month will not ensure him to rule in the future, but only to rely more and more on new purchases of easily corruptible politicians. A new episode of Bunga Blackmail: the Italian PM will have to face the demands of a new bunch of part-time politicians (or blackmailers).

Berlusconi’s victory was a Pyrrhic one, as he fought a battle only for the sake of winning. It seems that he saw the vote as a personal duel with his ex-ally Gianfranco Fini, who had presented the no-confidence-vote proposal a month before, after splitting from Berlusconi’s party.

But the main reason why Berlusconi has struggled so much to remain Prime Minister (eventually relying on a 3-vote victory) is that resignation would mean the end of his juridical immunity. “Berlusconi wants to stay in power only to avoid the courts.” Fini said.

Therefore Berlusconi faced the vote without looking beyond the vote itself. Indeed, he managed to take over opposition forces only by means of creating new ones.  Berlusconi’s victory eventually clarified the role of Fini’s FLI and of UDC as opposition parties.

What is then the political meaning of the confidence vote and its consequences on the civil society?

Berlusconi’s victory represents at the same time the apex and the decadent end of Berlusconism. Today we’re experiencing the apex of a corrupt phenomenon that has been haunting Italy for 16 years.  Berlusconi’s compravendita is the symbol of a ruling class with no ideals but many personal interests.

On the other hand the vote ended up showing the decadence of this system. Berlusconi has now to face a critical scenario, having no more chances to create alliances with other parties. A third coalition (FLI, UDC and API) is indeed likely to be founded. Only singular purchases of MPs will allow Berlusconi to survive in the future. The specter of new elections is getting closer.

The meaning of the confidence vote for the civil society assumes an appalling acceptation. It’s indeed the symbol of a divided Italy. On one side, within the Parliament, a corrupt ruling class has forgotten the existence of a people outside Italian places of power. Outside, Italians feel they’ve been forgotten by politicians who are too distant from real life.

And a whole generation has unleashed its anger across the streets of Rome. Violence and resentment have seized the hearts of some of them.  But how can politicians claim the right to condemn these people, when they denied them the right to create their own future lives?

We need to get rid of this Italy. We, the youngsters, must rebel and build up a better country. Italian Republic for sale.

Berlusconi’s confidence vote : victory or purchase?

Behind yesterday’s images of Italian MPs waving Italian flags after confidence vote won by Berlusconi the shadows of bribery are unfolding.

According to opposition parties, Berlusconi corrupted several MPs to gather the votes he needed to win yesterday’s confidence vote. Besides the question of how a government can rule with such a narrow political majority, the issue of MPs compravendita (trade) is now the core of a parallel debate in Italy.

Over the last month several MPs left opposition parties and consequently abandoned their no-confidence positions while other MPs betrayed their previous declarations as they voted in favour of Berlusconi’s government.

Berlusconi’s victory yesterday was only a partial success. While Il Cavaliere had no troubles in the Senate, the vote in the Camera dei Deputati was won by only three votes. And these three votes are the hot issue.

Antonio Di Pietro, leader of Italia dei Valori opposition party, last Friday presented to Rome magistrates a series of documents that would prove the negotiations behind Berlusconi’s victory. Di Pietro argued several votes were literally bought by Berlusconi, who managed to corrupt several MPs picked up among opposition parties.

Although Italians are used to their politicians reviewing political views (and parties) quite often, yesterday’s afterthoughts seemed rather equivocal and incoherent.

This thesis appears more than a risky conjecture as Catia Polidori’s vote is considered. Polidori is a member of FLI, the party founded by Berlusconi’s ex ally Gianfranco Fini, who had declared his fellows were determined to vote against Berlusconi’s confidence. Thus he had to be rather surprised by Polidori’s betrayal yesterday afternoon, when she suddenly changed her mind and voted for the confidence.

However, according to FLI member Luca Barbareschi, her vote, though unexpected, was well-reasoned. Polidori indeed is the cousin of another well-known Polidori, owner of private university CEPU and on good terms with Berlusconi.  Last July the Italian Prime Minister, after a visit to the University, declared his government had the intention to grant public funds to CEPU, equalizing Polidori’s telematic university with any ordinary private institutes.

When you receive a favour from your Prime Minister you’re expected to return it one day, Di Pietro and Barbareschi may agree.

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