One of those useful Italian expressions. It means what a mess or what a disaster along with several other meanings that I won’t list here. It sums up what has been going on in the world of politics these last couple of weeks . You will remember that way back on April 28th we got a new coalition government that it was to move quickly to solve the serious issues facing Italy. Finally a coalition of the two main parties resolved to change the labour laws , the voting system and reduce the tax burden . Well 16 days later nothing has happened other than a great deal of flying around Europe by the various newly elected ministers. In fact they are busy setting up all kinds of commissions to look at the issues they were bought in to solve. The rather nasty ( from the politicians point of view) reduction in numbers, cuts in allowances, cancelation of tax payer funded political donations and decimation of regional government has been tossed into the long grass while they seemingly focus on the vexed issue of the repeal of the IMU tax on first houses. Regular readers will remember that Silvio Berlusconi and his Pdl right wing party proposed this during the election and went into the coalition with this as the one thing they wanted to see happen. The Pd party ( left wing ) still with me? Good. Well they had to elect a new Gen. Sec. last weekend and at their conference they suddenly realised that Silvio though busy with his bunga bunga trial with the lovely Ruby testifying Here she is :
might well be seen by the populous as the guy that saved them money and at the next election (probably later this year) could romp home. Speaker after speaker brought this point up and delegate after delegate realised that their own gravy train could be ended. So now we have a face off and the PD ( yup the left wingers well done) have upped the offer by tossing in not just the first houses but canceling IMU on all businesses as well. So they can claim a slice of the possible positive vote from a grateful people. A bit like the film Casino Royal
Once Silvio has finished with bunga bunga he will raise his stake by adding in a refund on the tax paid last year and so the bidding will move on. It also conveniently keeps the much bigger electoral reforms off the table. Well they are not politicians for nothing are they.
So it seems rather than being a basket case with debt to GDP at 131% Italy is awash with cash and we can expect more largesse from the politicians. Maybe
But I’m not confident and I’m not sure Frau Angela is going to be too pleased.
The hot news down here in the heel where these Rome shinanigans are largely ignored (many never paid the tax in the first place and had no intention of paying it this year either ) is that the President of the Province of Taranto was arrested yesterday along with the environment minister. You remember the steel works down here belching out all those cancer causing fumes. Well amazing news team. You won’t believe it I know but it seems that these two fine fellows voted in by a trusting electorate had been taking “favours” from the said steel plant. Blow me down with a feather Bruce, I nearly choked on my morning cuppa. Not only that but the two lads felt that the bung wasn’t enough and have been re-arrested today charged with extortion after they insisted on a load more cash for looking the other way when the plant failed to make any of the changes required by law.
Monty Python had a bribe game show a few years back