>>> Starting at 09.30am on 30 January, La Cosa will have a special LIive event and will continue to follow the voting for the election of the President of the Republic together with the M5S spokespersons who have decided to get the Italian people involved and they are commenting on the main events of these long long days - and giving explanations as well! Click here for the live streaming: Have another look at everything that’s happened today. <<<<<<

Franceschini In a press conference, Franceschini presented the new website called It’s the creation of of Cicciobello Renzie - designed to promote Expo 2015. It’s not quite as bad as, but it’s created quite a stir on the Internet.

"Se The aim of was to show the world something about Renzi’s Italy. And we can certainly say that it has achieved this with flying colours: public money spent without any control, technical incompetence and everything a bit hit and miss. You just have to start analysing the website to realise the extent that money has been wasted. No one can explain why it was decided to put the project in the hands of a private agency. And it’s quite clear that there are still technical errors and things that aren’t quite accurate. These factors are characteristics of the development of the website. It would be very serious if we get confirmation of an issue raised by Scorza - namely that there’s been copyright violation in relation to the photographs used on the site. Thus, first of all we want things clearing up and then we are wondering: is it possible that there were no alternative ways of giving the world an image of Italy? We have to consider that Italy’s image is already seriously sullied by the numerous scandals associated with Expo 2015. Following this line of thinking, let’s do something ourselves. How about the proposal put forward by Digital Champion, Riccardo Luna? Let’s start from the beginning and put out a “call to action” to create a shared platform created by start-ups and community groups. They are just waiting for the establishment to make use of their ideas.
Noi Members of the government, how about it?” M5S Lower House

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Online voting for the presidential candidate #PresidenteM5S


Today there’s online voting for the 5 Star MoVement’s candidate for the position of President of the Republic from 9.00 am until 2:00 pm (Italian time) (so that it’s finished before the start of voting in parliament).
The gathering of the parliamentary group came up with a a list of names that we are voting on today. We’ve added Romano Prodi’s name to this list because we feel duty-bound to honour our commitment with the PD parliamentarians to whom we sent emails. After Lorenza Carlassare declined to be a candidate, the complete list of nine names is as follows:
Pierluigi Bersani
Raffaele Cantone
Nino Di Matteo
Ferdinando Imposimato
Elio Lannutti
Paolo Maddalena
Romano Prodi
Salvatore Settis
Gustavo Zagrebelsky
Use this link to choose from these names:
The candidate that gets the most votes will be voted for by the parliamentary group right from the first round of voting.
We are informing you that, in any case, if from the fourth round of voting onwards, majority changes should happen to bring up the name of someone who gets the support of a number of parliamentary political entities, we will decide how to take the best action with snap voting on the blog.

Posted on January 29, 2015 at 12:26 PM in | Post a comment | ListenListen
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LIVE: The M5S candidate for president #presidenteM5S


The direct streaming of the M5S gathering will be on La Cosa

There’s no doubt that the M5S intends to contribute to the election of the President of the Republic, an expression of the majority of the Italian people. On 22 January we asked Renzi for a list of potential candidates so that we could put these names to our signed up members. He didn’t deign to respond. Nor did he respond when he was asked to do this by the crowds packing out Piazza del Popolo - crowds asking him to respect the spirit of the men who drew up our Constitution. At that point, as we no longer felt Renzi to be a trustworthy interlocutor, we turned to the PD parliamentarians, many of whom are experiencing their first term of office. Absolute silence. Thinking that their fear of standing out was the insurmountable barrier, we emailed them to ask them to freely express their wishes. Pronouncing the names is an exercise in democracy! From the 400 PD parliamentarians, we got five replies as well as an “invitation to turn over the soil in the vineyard”. The only person named was Romano Prodi.
We offered the PD parliamentarians a straight-forward and transparent route for coming up with a candidate that we could all back. Apart from rare exceptions, they ignored us.
We have waited for some days to try and have a dialogue with a party that is closed up like a hedgehog - a party that has a leader who has decided that he will make the decision (together with Berlusconi) about who is to be the President of the Republic, when it comes to the fourth ballot.
At this point, dear citizens, who are both inside and outwith the institutions, it is up to us all to indicate a person. The method we have chosen (just a single round of voting on the Internet) is the consequence of days that have been lost in waiting in vain for an indication from the PD.
Today at 9.00 am the gathering of the M5S parliamentarians will take place. The spokespersons will discuss possible names and characteristics of the future President of the Republic. They will do this in live streaming to give all the signed up members information and ideas to help them make a choice. The gathering of the parliamentary group will come up with a a list of names, including that of Romano Prodi, that will then be subjected to a vote on the blog. This is because we believe we have to honour our commitment with the PD parliamentarians in the email we sent to them. The signed up members will be able to express one preference out of all those on the list. The candidate that gets the most votes will be voted for by the parliamentary group right from the first round of voting.
We are informing the signed up members that, in any case, if from the fourth round of voting onwards, the change of majority should happen to bring up the name of someone who gets the support of a number of parliamentary political entities, we will decide how to take the best action with snap voting on the blog.
This has been and still is the M5S journey for the election of the Head of State. It’s a journey that is straightforward and responsible." M5S Lower House and Senate

Posted on January 28, 2015 at 12:10 PM in | Post a comment | ListenListen
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Letter to PD parliamentarians concerning the candidates for the office of the President of the Republic


Image: a joint session of both houses of parliament for the election of the President of the Republic

Last night Beppe Grillo and Gianroberto Casaleggio sent the following letter to all PD parliamentarians

“Dear parliamentarian of the Democratic Party,
After asking your party leader, we are asking you to express your preferences in relation to candidates for the office of President of the Republic. The names put forward by PD parliamentarians will be put to the signed up members of the M5S for an online vote in the next few days. We believe that it is necessary to publish the names of the candidates. We believe that it is an exercise in democracy as well as a way of creating a bridge between the democratic forces and a transparency obligation for the citizens.
The President of the Republic must be an expression of parliament and not simply of negotiations between a handful of people, whoever they may be. W feel this is the spirit of the Constitution. We believe that an election in the first three rounds, with the participation of the forces of the opposition, and in broad daylight, is a way of giving authority to the next President of the Republic as a representative of the whole nation so as not to marginalise him and label him as one who has been “appointed”. We look forward to your reply.
Yours sincerely Beppe Grillo and Gianroberto Casaleggio

PS: Tomorrow (Wednesday 28 January 2015) from 10:00 am until 7:00 pm there’ll be voting on the M5S operating system to choose a candidate for the position of 5 Star MoVement president for these regions: Campania, The Marches, Liguria, Tuscany, Puglia and Umbria. The Meetups and the elected representatives of the 5 Star MoVement are warned not to give any indication about individual candidates in their communications.

Posted on January 27, 2015 at 05:14 PM in | Post a comment | ListenListen
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Passaparola - The #NewTangentopoli, by Piercamillo Davigo


Nicola Morra interviewed Judge Piercamillo Davigo on the topic of corruption and legality

Integrity test to unmask the corrupt

Morra: So Judge, 1992 saw the start of the clean hands inquiry. Since then you judges have done a sterling job and yet you have been unable to eradicate corruption, above all in the public services. What is the reason for all of this in your opinion? And what can be done to eradicate it completely?

Davigo: The main reason is what the politicians have been doing in recent years namely, instead of making it harder to get away with corruption, they have been making it more difficult to investigate corruption. The rules have been changed (to favour those that commit the crime!), the evidence gathered has been zeroed and various obstacles have been introduced. Clearly therefore, if you make it harder to suppress corruption, obviously the number of cases of corruption will increase and the number of convictions will decline and that is precisely what has happened here in Italy. These days the situation is at risk of getting out of control: the number of cases, the seriousness of the cases and the high number of people involved in these cases requires exceptional tools with which to combat the crime. I am convinced that the solution, or rather one of the solutions, may be to introduce what the Anglo-Saxons call an “integrity test, in other words, sting operations against corruption. In the United States I was asked this question: “But do you guys in Italy investigate corruption at all?”In answer to my affirmative response they said: “No way, that’s too difficult.”Surprised, I asked them: “But why, don’t you guys intervene? Do you just simply let them steal?” All they said in response was: “No, we do an integrity test. What it means is that immediately after the elections we send out undercover cops who offer money to those elected and those that accept the money get arrested. So, every time there is an election we clean out the political class. This is a solution that could be based on strong existing evidence, such as a disproportionately high lifestyle when compared to income, so as to be sure that we identify people that are already acting suspiciously.

Mose, Expo, MafiaCapitale: the new Tangentopoli

Morra: In other words, integrity tests and maximum possible transparency. The idea of a politician-meter may even work. For example, I am convinced that all public officials must be required to account for what they earn and what they spend. However, Judge, with the scandals of the 1990s that ravaged the party politicians of that time, there was a very fierce and indignant public reaction. I remember very well that at that time many Italians followed all the links with the Milan Public Prosecution on a daily basis because they wanted to know what was happening. These days, instead, it seems that the MOSE, EXPO and MafiaCapitale cases are being followed almost half-heartedly because we have come to the conclusion that these maladies are ineradicable by Italian custom. Does this analysis sound right to you? It’s almost as if we have become accustomed to it?

Davigo: I think that the public has become resigned to it rather than accustomed to it in the sense that since the hopes for an improvement in the situation have been thwarted, people feel that the things that are happening are inevitable. However, we must also remember that one of the main problems that discourage foreign investment and results in the malfunctioning of our public service is organised crime and corruption. If Italy doesn’t address these two serious problems the Country will never emerge from the difficulties it is currently facing, even in terms of our relations with other countries. We must never forget that, contrary to what has been said for some time, Italy is in no way an unsafe country but it has two very serious forms of criminality: the one is organised crime and the other is the deviance of the leadership classes, the extent of which is typical of Italy alone. We export organised crime to other countries that now have it because we took it there. However, whereas in other countries individuals are forced to resign for committing offences that are far less serious than those we learn about every night on the television news, here in Italy those individuals carry on in their jobs until the Carabinieri go and get them!

Anti-corruption regulations don’t exist

Morra: Judge, one final question. The so-called anti-corruption package has been languishing in the Senate for about the last nine months. Every now and then it gets hauled out and dusted off, only to be blocked once again and, as a result, expectations regarding the approval of new regulations that will vigorously fight corruption are once again dashed. What is needed, for example even at the Parliamentary level? How can we ensure that the Country equips itself with some definite rules? Especially since recent parliamentary and ministerial occurrences have revealed “little hands” introducing regulations that are questionableto say the least, euphemistically speaking...

Davigo: Here too I believe that if the parliamentarians were a little more open, above all to the pressure coming from the International community, which has for a long time been asking Italy to clean up its leadership class and is asking us to implement the International conventions that Italy has signed, starting with the OCSE convention on cross-border corruption, the UNO convention on corruption and the European Commission convention on corruption, to introducing a series of regulations that reduce this phenomenon to physiology, taking for granted that the Italian situation is not physiological at all. After all, in the perception indices, we are nearly bottom of the list in Europe.

The importance of culture

Morra: So, from this point of view, we must hope that Europe represents a way out for us rather than a cause of further aggravation. One last cultural-moral question if I may: as someone that has for many years dedicated his life to the justice system, what do you think we should do in terms of cultural investment in order to finally get this country of ours make this blessed“quantum leap? I ask because I see that, precisely in terms of the perceptions about corruption and also the effectiveness of the regulations, even in the small things we have now become resigned to the fact of seeing everyone break the rules all the time and those that do break the rules, getting away with it. This is indeed an extremely widespread behaviour.

Davigo: There is a very serious problem that also regards the educational institutions. I always tell the story that although I attended a primary school in a very small little municipal district in Pavia Province where I was born, in primary school I received a mafia-style cultural education because whenever the teacher left the class he ordered the class captain to write the names of those who were good and bad on the chalkboard. The class captain would go up to the board, draw a line and write the names of the good classmates and the bad classmates, underlined, based entirely on a business relationship, in other words who gave him something at that time, perhaps some chocolate or a balloon, things like that. He never actually wrote down the names of the naughty ones. If someone got too noisy, after having pulled them up several times he would begin to write the first few letters of the offenders’ surnames and, without fail, from the benches the students’ voices would shout out "SPY"! So when does one become a spy then? One can be a spy in the eyes of an invading enemy or in the eyes of a tyrant, but you cannot be a spy in the eyes of the legitimate authorities in your own country. None of you ever doubted that the teacher indeed had the legitimate authority or even that the class captain, while he may have been a bit of a stinker, had the legitimate authority delegated to him/her by the teacher. However, in that context, the cry of “spy” became an apology for “omertà” (see no evil, hear no evil…), which is one of the pillars of mafia culture. So it really doesn’t matter that the guy is actually really bad, you must not write him up. But there’s more, and even worse. I was obviously also a student and based on my memory I had to verify whether what the Honourable Andreatta was saying was indeed true, namely that Italian schools create terrible students who are used to ganging up against the teacher and will go on to become terrible citizens because the teacher-student relationship is a metaphor for the State-citizen relationship. When I was in the United States I was once told something that I found very difficult to believe, so they took me to a school in order to convince me that it was indeed true. The thing that I found very difficult to believe was that the teachers gave the students timed exercises to do at home. The children would go home, switch on a timer, stopped working on the exercise when the allocated time was up and returned to school the next day with the homework done as far as they had gotten when the time expired. Now, I went to that school and the first thing that struck me was the teachers and the pupils’ surprise at how shocked I was, in other words, they simply could not understand why I couldn’t believe something that was so obvious to them. Then they explained why things worked as they did, after I told them that it certainly didn’t work like that here. If we are given a project to do at home, parents and every relation, no matter how distant, are mobilised to ensure that the child puts together a good project. Then they explained to me that no one copies work over there. If someone doesn’t know something, he/she gets up and asks the teacher to explain it to them. To my surprise they told me that this happens firstly because educational qualifications do not have the same legal value that they do here in Italy so it what you are is not as important as what you know, but above all the important tests in life are not like here by us, in other words to complete a study cycle, but instead to start the next study cycle. These are exams that the students will sit before people that they have never met. In that context, the teacher is like a trainer that prepares the students for real tests that they will sit before someone else. Cheating makes no sense whatsoever. Now I don’t know whether their schooling is better than ours, perhaps not, but that’s not the issue. However, their schooling teaches them loyalty whereas ours teaches our children street smarts.

Morra: Here too there is still a lot to be done. Thank you very much, Judge.

Posted on January 26, 2015 at 05:10 PM in | Post a comment | ListenListen
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Little hand of Italy, by Dario Fo #nottedellonestà


Text - Dario Fo - The Night of Honesty

“I’ll be honest. I’m sorry, but I feel it’s no use turning language upside down to avoid excessive injury to our sense of patriotism and civic pride. Let us be very careful. Let’s take a deep breath. Let’s be blunt. We are a nation of thieves. Stop! Ooops - I’ve made a mistake in how I put that. According to the statistics, the number of thefts in Italy from shops, banks, charity boxes in the churches is at a level that is definitely acceptable. In fact, we are on average to be classed as a people of mediocre petty-thieves. But it’s theft from the public purse where we excel at levels that are unimaginable. For example, tax dodging amounts to 180 billion euro a year. Watch out! Who are the major players contributing to this figure? Almost exclusively just 10% of the population: owners of major industrial companies, top managers, bankers, etc.... Basically, the people who’ve got lots. The remaining 90% - it’s incredible – pay their taxes. They work and they pay their taxes. But then the scandals get added in.
In Venice, the city of people in love, a few months ago there was the “Moses” scandal. What happened? Well, there were 35 people arrested, - including the mayor of Venice, Giorgio Orsoni and an arrest warrant was issued for the former governor, Giancarlo Galan. One billion Euro disappeared in kickbacks and consultancy fees and the Finance Police confiscated goods whose value amounted to about 40 million Euro. Alberto Scaramuzza, the Venice judge investigating the affair declared that the people under investigation were thought to have “ made their public office (that they were duty bound to protect) subservient to the interests of the criminal business group and they took advantage of an impressive array of personal benefits”, and the Venice prosecutor, Nordio, said that the method of distributing the kickbacks was “more complex and more sophisticated than Tangentopoli”. What a great people we are! We are also able to do better than ourselves!
But let’s shift our gaze to Milan, where another great scandal, the scandal of Expo 2015, was defined by the Financial Times to be analogous to the scandal that brought down the world of Italian politics at the beginning of the 1990s. And in both Venice and Milan, the investigations discovered that people on the right and on the left were involved. Even in matters of corruption, the “par condicio” {principle of fair exposure for all political hues} has to be respected! There’s even been talk of a “ Mafia high command” sharing out the contracts for the construction of the site for the universal exhibition: Expo 2015. And do you want to know how many years in prison got handed out to the people convicted of this massive thieving from the State? Well, the maximum sentence was three years and four months! That meant they were freed immediately.


Get him! Arrest him! Call the police! Catch the thief! ”.
And so everything gets destroyed by the theatricals, by the play-acting, just like in the theatre. The situations pop up at such a rhythm that no one can keep up. Each bit of fraudulent behaviour gets absorbed, forgotten. And let’s not forget, behind these operations that are in fact publicity activities, there’s always the government. It uses various manoeuvres and under-the-counter activities and always manages to bring down a veil of silence over any situations that might embarrass them. In the text of a law a tiny little clause added at the last moment turns up unexpectedly, and strangely it seems to be there to resolve the problems of a certain person who has been sentenced to prison after a conviction for tax fraud - and in this way he could come back into politics. And immediately up jumps the President of the Council and shouts: “Never fear! Everything’s in order! I added that! It was my little hand that did that!”. “Ah well then! That’s quite another thing! We have a president with a little hand! Long live the little hand! Little hand of Italy, Italy has woken, Bound Scipio's helmet Upon her head. Where is Victory? Let her bow down, for God created her Slave of Silvio“.” Dario Fo

Posted on January 25, 2015 at 07:16 PM in | Post a comment | ListenListen
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List all the posts of January 2015

Beppe Grillo Meetups

Groups 372 Members 76.596
Cities 281 Countries 10

Books and DVDs


Check out the books and DVDs of Beppe Grillo (service in Italian)


Clean Up Parliament

Map of Power


Webby award
14th Annual Webby Awards Official Honoree Selections


Tegenlicht - Beppe Grillo's Interview

"De toekomst van Europa volgens Beppe Grillo"

(Tegenlicht TV)

International Press Review

The New Yorker
"Beppe's Inferno"

"The Comic Who Shook Italy"
(The video | Related post)

"The Web Celeb 25"
(Related post)

"Meeting Italy's silenced satirist"

People and power: "Beppe's Blog"

TIME magazine's First Annual Blog Index
(related post)