Wednesday, February 1

Tante Belle Cose - Italy gets off to a New Start

With our Prime Minister Monti receiving the (sham) recognition* from the Paris journal Trombinoscope as "European of the Year", it's not surprising that things are looking up for Italy, despite the crippled Concordia stuck on its side in troubled waters [insert your metaphor here].

There appears to be a new tide of taking on the tax cheats, petty criminals and those bad apples who seem to ruin the entire barrel, if you are at least to believe the newspapers.  Regardless, it's a welcome sight to see the mainstream media finally bringing to light the Corruption of the Day blasted right on the front pages.  Hopefully, this pace will keep up. 

- This month, we saw the Financial Police (something akin to the IRS) go in to nightclubs all over Milan.  Once the proprietors saw that they were being watched, incredibly, receipts and income rose by 44%, in some cases up to 200% in one night alone.
Of course, it could be that suddenly a lot more people just wanted to party before the end of the world in 2012...

- Rome brought out a fine of €250 for those caught not scooping up the poop.  Surveying the lofty Via Veneto, one woman in a fur said, "Give me a ticket - I can't pick that gross stuff up."

If that's the case, why don't you (and all your paesani for that matter) simply "curb your dog"???

- Italy's new Minister of Equal Opportunities blasted Rome's Mayor Alemanno for playing three-card monty with his City Council members.  Forced by law to have equal numbers of men & women (he has 10 to 2), he simply dissolved his cabinet the day before it was to take effect and re-employed them all.  That way, those who oppose his number-challenged mind, have to start the judicial process all over again.
In his defense, he said he "canvassed lots and lots of women but no one wanted the job"....Really?!  I could name a few, starting with Yours, Truly.

- And, in a case of citizen watchdogs run amok, the Consumer's Associations (for whom I usually nurture unbridled love), retracted their lawsuit against Mr. Della Valle of Tod's shoes for offering €50 million to restore the Colosseum. 
It was an unprecedented case of corporate or, in this case, personal philanthropy, something sorely missing in European society, and these jokers wanted to block it.  Providing this observer with an extreme case of hives from scratching my forehead in utter disbelief.

* A sham given that he started his new job at the end of November 2011.  Just like Obama before him & the Nobel Peace Prize, since when do we now give award for promises and not for deeds well done?  It also stands to mention that in his last year as President of Italy's MBA University Bocconi, it fell from 28th place to 42nd.  Hoping that'll not be the case for Italy as well... 

No comments: