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January 31, 2006

Vivisection is No Use

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I admit that when I think of the vivisection of animals I am ashamed of the human specie and I feel solidarity with agent Smith of Matrix when he says that humans are not mammals but viruses.

I would like to abolish animal vivisection by law.

The objection offered is that “vivisection is useful, better them than us.”

I would like to see if someone were to vivisection your cat or your dog how you would react to these words.

Anyway, vivisection is not useful and it’s not said by a comic but by the journal Nature, a reference point for the scientific world, which on 10/11/2005 published an article with the declarations of some scientists:

“ - Tests for toxicity that we have used for decades are simply bad science. Today we have the opportunity to start from zero and to develop tests based on evident proofs that give us a real opportunity for toxicology to at last become a respectable science.

- The bad quality of most of the tests on animals has been recognised. These have never undergone the rigours of validation today imposed on alternative methods “in vitro”. Most of the tests on animals over-estimate or under-estimate the toxicity, or simply are not capable of providing precise data about toxicity in relation to humans. (75% of tests on animals are done for toxicology tests – editor’s note)

- Embryo toxicology tests done on animals cannot be trusted to be extended to humans: when we discover that cortisone is toxic for the embryos of all the species tested except for humans, what should we do?
"

The REACH proposal is being discussed in Brussels. It’s concerned with the evaluation and regulation of chemicals sent into the environment. It has been established that these have caused a million premature deaths in the EU (cancer, degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis).

I have decided to support the Scientific Campaign group Equivita (previously called Comitato Scientifico Antivivisezionista), which is asking for a clause to be included in the REACH proposal  forbidding the use of experimentation on animals to evaluate the toxicity of substances.

Experimentation on animals allows industries to get whatever result they like (by changing the species of animal used) and to avoid civil responsibility by maintaining that the animal model does not allow for “ the certainty of the test”.

There are predictive investigation methods for humans such as toxicgenomics, already in the text of the REACH proposal as a possible choice. Toxicgenomics studies the reaction of the genome of the human cell with results 100 times faster and more cost-effective.

I’m ending this long post with a thought from Albert Einstein: “Vivisection. Nothing is of such high importance as to justify such unethical methods

PS In Lugano, I met Hans Ruesch, a really young 90-year-old founder of the antivivisection movement and author of the book: “Imperatrice Nuda” (Naked Empress or the Great Medical Fraud). I send him affectionate greetings from this Blog.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 06:21 PM in Health/Medicine | Comments (10)
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January 30, 2006

PalaSanVittore

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photo: The prison of San Vittore



Divo Gronchi, General Director of Banca Popolare Italiana, has stated (finally) that there will be a big change in direction in comparison to the activities under the leadership of Fiorani.

He did this last Saturday when he announced a new well-endowed Board of Directors with 16 members, of whom 2 are continuing from the recent glorious past of the Bank.

In fact, two new members, Guido Duccio Castellotti e Giorgio Olmo were Directors at the time of Fiorani’s lead.

I remind readers that Directors on the Board apart from gaining a bit of money, have the job of being vigilant about the company and they have responsibilities similar to those of the head of the company. Now Fiorani has been in prison for nearly 50 days and these ex-companions of adventure are re-elected?

But where are consobbancaditaliaborsaitalianaabi? (bodies that control and check activities) And what is the use of these institutions if they don’t guarantee the rules of the game and support the investors?

A word of advice to those who own shares in BPI: sell them as soon as possible unless they change these 2 Directors.
The election of the new members (including Castellotti) took place in Lodi at PalaCastellotti. At this rate the next will take place at PalaSanVittore (the prison).

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 08:12 PM in Economics | Comments (3)
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Let’s Black Out China!

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On the Internet the slogan: "FATE SKYFO" (You're disgusting! - spelled to include the word 'SKY') is flying around. It's referring to SKY controlled by Murdoch who has asked for the closure of 2 websites: coolstreaming.it (80,000 users) and calciolibero.com.

The portals have been closed by the Guardia di Finanza and the site managers have been put under investigation for having allowed people to watch Italian championship games of serie A and serie B.


In fact the games have been made available from Chinese sites.


How it works:

the Chinese television channel CCTV transmits the games in China;

Synacast, a company with Chinese capital sends the signals to the Internet, seemingly in agreement with CCTV.

Result: the Italian championship games bought by CCTV are on the Internet and can be seen by the whole world using P2P technology which allows for the exchange of information on the Internet.


It’s clear that blocking 2 Italian sites is of no use.


You then need to black out China.

And it seems that this is what is happening with requests to Italian Internet Providers. If then the games were to be put on the internet by Mongolia and Taiwan would they black out those countries too?

It’s as though Mediaset were to buy American baseball games and asked the FBI to black out Cuba to prevent them being seen on the internet.


Governments are now being beaten by the multinationals.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 02:02 AM in Information | Comments (10)
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January 28, 2006

Enchantments

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Today’s dictators have power by getting control of information and the Internet. Weapons have become useless.

If the citizens were to know the truth some regimes wouldn’t last 5 minutes.

They get control by making economic agreements with American technology companies like Yahoo!, Google, Microsoft.

These agreements give the dictators control over the population and allow the companies to make money and to conquer markets.
These companies are quoted on the Stock Exchange in the United States. They respond to the written laws controlling the economy and to the unwritten laws concerning the ethics and morality of a democratic State. Laws however that are valid only at home.
Outside perhaps.

It depends on how much they pay.

In China, for example, they pay well!

And it’s possible to sell technology and repression whilst pocketing big dividends.

Like Google that has accepted to eliminate references to the independence of Taiwan, to Tienanmen and to the Falun Gong movement.
Like the witch in the story of Snow White, these technology companies look at themselves in the mirror of their pure white company dominated by capital and they see themselves to be beautiful, superbly beautiful.

Like their enchanted publicity.

They sell red shiny apples outside their castle.

Poisoned red apples, from true exporters of democracy.

Even better than with arms in Iraq.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:45 PM in Economics | Comments (7)
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Citizens Primaries: Energy – Your comments

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Today I’m doing a summary of your many comments on the topic of Energy as part of the Citizen Primaries initiative.

Many thanks to Pecoraro Scanio, Di Pietro and Bertinotti for having expressed their position. In your comments you repeated many times that there is a need to develop renewable sources and to adopt incentives to make this happen.

For example with certificates of energy efficiency, giving fines to those who sell energy without reducing CO2 emissions over a period of years.
I have collected together your suggestions according to topics (some referred to the same problem) and I’ve put them into this initial document.
>This document is attached.


PS. Tomorrow there’ll be a demonstration at Latina against the privatisation of water by the company Acqualatina spa. Hey, let’s participate! All the details are on: http://acqualatinanograzie.splinder.com

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 03:51 AM in Citizen Primaries | Comments (1)
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January 27, 2006

Clean energy, dirty information

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The proofreaders of once upon a time have disappeared.

Have you noticed?

Newspapers contain typing errors, imprecise information and spelling mistakes. You need to understand these editors, these journalists.

They work every day, even holidays, to keep us informed. We cannot really expect precision.
This even happens with the surveys. They ask a question while thinking of another one, the opposite. And when they realise, it’s too late, the newspaper is already in print. Today’s Repubblica worried about the gas emergency, consults the citizens with a survey using SMS to be paid for at 0.3098 euro TIM, 0.30 euro Vodafone and Wind, including sales tax.
The first question needs careful reflection:

”Is it right to focus on energy saving on the part of families and companies?”

And after the first question, that naturally encourages us to save, we pass to number two:
”Should we opt for alternative sources, including nuclear?”

The error is only in this word: “including”.

But it’s clear that they wanted to say: “excluding” , they know that nuclear is not an alternative energy.
Or perhaps not? Is that question the attempt at tripping us up, to make the Italians pay for the privilege of saying that they want nuclear?
At this point, I’d add a third question, to the survey, just so that the motives are clear:

”Is it highly likely that the editorial group of l’Espresso has interests connected to nuclear energy that it considers alternative to the alternative energies?”


First PS: Yesterday my 2006 tour called "Incantesimi" (Enchantments) started.

Second PS: Today the blog celebrates its first birthday. The first comment came from my next door neighbour. Today we’re a few more. Thank you everyone.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 12:42 AM in Energy | Comments (7)
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January 25, 2006

The Monk of Monza

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This week's l'Espresso talking about Telecom, says "Grillo had warned everyone", that "Grillo had anticipated the reasons used by the financial analysts to explain the wave of selling in the telecom sector".

Well there you go! And I was just joking when I said that!

Yesterday in Milan, at the headquarters of the Banca Intesa, they discussed a crucial topic for us citizens: “Development and decline: the role of the institutions”. Present were the employees Rutelli, Fassino and Follini. With them was also Tronchetti who made this impassioned statement:

”I would like people to avoid confusion and comparisons between people that have nothing in common, not history, not values and not responsibility.

The subtle allusion was to Gnutti who was a director, together with him, in Olimpia, and to Consorte, a director, together with him, in Telecom and who, thus at least in this company, shared responsibility together. Or did he not know that?

”Let’s make it clear once and for all: there was a Telecom before the Pirelli acquisition and a post-Pirelli-Telecom.“

On this, one can’t but be in agreement. In fact according to l’Espresso, the debt of the company has reached 42 thousand million Euro. This is after the sale of Seat PG, Telespazio, Finsiel, real estate and so on.

By how much has employment grown since the arrival of Tronchetti? How many were employed under the rule of Colaninno?

”As soon as we started work on restoring the company, we found some unpleasant surprises.”

"We imagined that certain write offs were simply management errors."

Write offs? Surprises?  And we were thinking that they had done an in-depth analysis before buying Telecom. But no. What a surprise!

"These travelling companions that I’ve found myself with and certainly not been out to look for, the lawyers will be taking an interest in."

But travelling companion Gnutti who’s been looking for him and searching for him? There’s gratitude! It’s true that you recognise who your friends are at a time of need!

A furious Tronchetti then concluded:

”This is the moment that whoever in politics has always been honest separates himself quite sharply from the dishonest people."

It’s here that, like the Monk of Monza with the disgraceful Egidio, Fassino smiled and, troubled, applauded him.
Before that it was Consorte who he applauded….

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:28 PM in Wailing Wall | Comments (6)
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Transparent Employees

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In my show last year I often talked about www.wikipedia.org, the biggest encyclopedia in the world.

Wikipedia is created by free contributions from everyone. The Italian version has now reached a total of 133,000 entries compared to only 40,000 when I did a post about it in May 2005.

Access to Wikipedia is prohibited in China, and not yet in Italy.

You can find a bit of everything, even him, yes him really, the one who doesn’t want to dismiss the Parliament because he hasn’t yet finished his homework and is afraid of not passing the exam.

Here I’m giving you the table of contents, which really is fairly complete, even talking about his gestures and you can read the section dealing with him (or the Italian version that is a bit more complete).

Table of contents
> 1 Notes on the family

> 2 Early years
> 3 Other biographical notes about his life before entry into politics
> 4 Entrepreneurial activity
> 4.1 Construction
> 4.2 Television channels
> 4.3 Publishing
> 4.4 Other (Commerce, AC Milan)
> 5 Political Activity
> 5.1 Entry into the field
> 5.2 The non-eligibility question
> 5.3 Electoral Campaign and the 1994 elections
> 5.4 General notes
> 5.5 Governments led
> 6 Conflict of interests and "Par Condicio"
> 7 "Berlusconism"
> 8 Television
> 8.1 The Gasparri law and Retequattro
> 9 How Berlusconi is seen by public opinion
> 9.1 Abroad
> 9.1.1 Great Britain
> 9.1.2 United States of America
> 9.1.3 Sweden
> 10 Judicial proceedings against Berlusconi
> 10.1 Proceedings concluding with absolution
>
10.2 Proceedings in which he was found guilty but the crimes committed were subject to an amnesty
>
10.2.1 Declarations about the P2
> 10.2.2 False accounting when buying land
> 10.3 Proceedings in which he had the benefit of “prescription” for the crimes he was accused of.
> 10.3.1 All iberian 1 Trial (back-handers to Bettino Craxi)
> 10.3.2 Lodo Mondadori
> 10.3.3 SME Trial Point A
> 10.4 Proceedings concluding with a guilty verdict
> 10.5 Current Proceedings
> 10.5.1 Sme-Ariosto Trial (point A, back-hander to Judge R. Squillante)
> 11 Related Entries
> 12 Bibliography and references
> 13 External Connections
> 13.1 Biographies
> 13.2 Dedicated Sites
> 13.3 Articles and leaflets
> 13.4 In English



It’s an important piece of work, worth being developed and expanded.

It’s worth extending it to cover all the Party Secretaries.

Let’s have a go at doing it. It’s an activity for transparency.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 12:24 AM in Information | Comments (1)
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January 24, 2006

New Entry in Clean Up Parliament

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There’s a new entry in the Clean Up Parliament campaign.
In fact it’s old, but keeping track of all those who have been convicted of crimes who are sitting in Parliament isn’t easy.
He’s called Rocco Salini.
Marco Travaglio gave a description of him in a piece in BANANAS in l’Unità last September and he sent it to me.

People are always asking me who to vote for.
Instead I’d like to suggest who not to vote for:
all those parties with their electoral list containing the name of anyone who has been convicted of a crime.

You know the names of those in the list.

Salini & tobacco of Marco Travaglio

” … Because perhaps not everyone knows who is his latest acquisition (Mastella – editor’s note).
Rocco Salini da Teramo was the president DC of the regional authorities of Abruzzo, arrested all toghether (the president plus 10 councillors) in 1992 for a slipshod use of 450,000,000,000 of European funds. The councillors were found not guilty of “abuse of Office” actually because it was partially depenalised in the meantime.
But the president Salini no: he had also ideological falsehoods, and they had forgotten to depenalised that, thus he was convicted by the Court of Cassation and sentenced to one year and 4 months. Now, since the law forbids those who have been convicted from being a politician at the level of town, provincial or regional government, he had a brilliant idea: become a member of Parliament (the law, made by parliamentarians, does not forbid convicted people from becoming parliamentarians).

He turned to Forza Italia and he got the results required.

In 2001 the convict Salini entered triumphally into Montecitorio with his beautiful pale blue gown. But who trusts their friends: his name wasn’t included in the list of Ministers, and not even in the wider list of undersecretaries. A place in the subgovernment? Nope.

Only a miserable presidency of the committee of inquiry into depleted uranium, and he stepped down from that in disgust almost immediately. Loosing patience after an unnerving wait, he formed his own list: Terzo Polo, for the regional elections in Abruzzo. Against the left and against the right.
Bellachioma, alarmed by the Forza Italia supporters in Abruzzo for the mortal danger of losing not only his own votes but those of Salini, took swift action at the limits of time. He added an “armchair” (the 92nd) to his very welcoming government.

On 11 March, Salini alone had a swearing in ceremony as Undersecretary for Health: he had always defined himself “a country doctor”, and he wasn’t far out. In the meantime the Terzo Polo disappeared from the lists and any votes that would have gone in that direction marched tidily with those of the CDL. Not too many, judging from the results; even though there was fundamental support, the centre right lost Abruzzo as well. The Entrepreneur President, very much aware of the quality-price relationship, recognised the raw deal.

On 22 April, while drawing up the list of the second Bellachioma, struck out the name of Salini. Once he’d returned to the ranks of a simple Forza Italia person, after having tasted for 41 days, the delights of an “armchair”, Salini took hold of his hat: “How inelegant, I find it impolite even from a human and ethical viewpoint. I called Bondi, but he was with Berlusconi. Now I’m looking for Letta. They need to explain why.” But when they saw his telephone number on the display, they put the phone down. Thus the undersecretary-single-use-only had to start again. He “looked around” as they say in these cases. And as Metastasio would say: “wherever I look, it’s Mastella that I see”. Thus, after an understandable internal torment lasting a few seconds and after particularly detailed negotiations with Clemente, since ha had just been "swindled", they found an agreement.

He took all his things and went to Udeur. Now only evil whisperers suspect that in exchange he had the guarantee of a safe electoral college. But these things cannot even be imagined in the party of the moral issue.”

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:13 AM in Politics | Comments (7)
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January 22, 2006

Cleaning Up the Indian Parliament

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Anupam Mishra secretary of the Gandhi Peace Foundation of New Delhi in India has written the following email to me about the “Clean Up Parliament” initiative.

Dear Shri Beppe Grillo,

We came across your brilliant advert in International Herald Tribune, published in Paris on 22nd November when travelling to that area. On behalf of our organization GANDHI PEACE FOUNDATION we Congratulate you on such a courageous advert and the important piece in the services of civil society.

We find this tendency everywhere. There was a period when criminals were financing the politicians but then came the age where criminals themselves started entering into the politics and parliament.
They go inside by getting themselves elected and then they represent us . But then we don't have any system to throw them out from the temples of democracy.

Last fortnight our country faced a unique challenge in this regard.
Some 11 MPs were caught in hidden camera in the news channel taking bribe for asking questions in the Parliament.
These MPs represent almost all the big parties in the Parliament. So, all the parties became concerned about this and they took a very harsh decision to expel them from the Parliament. This is for the first time in the history that we could get rid of some corrupt politicians in this quick justice.

Of course, there are many more criminals and corrupt politicians sitting inside but we hope that initiatives like yours will some day may change things.

We have circulated your inspiring advert to some news channels and Hindi newspapers which comes out from 8 States and has 20 different editions. Your advert and news item based on that was carried out in all these editions. Apart from this, we are trying to send this to a TV News Channel. Any further development in this regard will be conveyed to you.

Once again thanking you very much for this small but greater step in the direction of upholding the democratic values.

Anupam Mishra
Secretary
Gandhi Peace Foundation

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:29 PM in Politics | Comments (9)
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Stanca Express

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At the end of his glorious five years at the head of the Ministry of Inovation, Stanca is throwing in the towel.
He has understood that the Italians, distracted by digital terrestrial, annoyed by connection costs among the highest in the world, and often not living within the areas covered by ADSL, haven't yet gone digital.

What to do with this amazing situation?
It’s simple, just inform them about the digital revolution with a 48-page booklet: “Digital Innovation for Families” that will be sent out to the 16 million Italian families.
By post of course, otherwise how would the families get it?
They’re not connected to the Internet.
Otherwise they would read it at their convenience using their PC as you all can do.
Using paper to explain digital is like sending a letter by pony after the invention of the automobile.

How much will it cost to send 48 pages x 16 million families?
Sevenmilliontwohundredandseventythousand Euros which is 45 cents a copy to print, stuff into an envelope and send.
But excuse me, what the f...k! wouldn’t it have been better to provide Italian schools with a few hundreds of thousands of PCs with that money?

The booklet is accompanied by a comic piece from the dwarf carrier of Internet: “the Government is promoting the digital revolution by a series of initiatives unequalled in Europe, starting from the teaching of informatics in the first year of school, and even facilitating the purchase of computers and access to Broadband.”

Let’s do our duty as citizens, helping the coffers of the State:
1 – let’s download the booklet from the Internet and thus avoid this waste of paper.
2 – let’s send an email to Stanca (address: L.Stanca@governo.it) asking him not to send us anything by post.
3 – let’s have a whip-round so that we can donate a PC to Stanca, we’ll digitalise him!

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 05:43 PM in Technology/Internet | Comments (3)
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January 21, 2006

Matrioshka Dolls

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Excuse me for being vulgar, even if using dots:
I don't care a f... about the par condicio or about the impar condicio!

Give our employees a chance to talk, to go on talking, that they stuff themselves with TV space, posters, newspapers, isoradio, interviews on the third page with a presentation on the first page.
That they get upset, that they counter-attack, that they give detailed accounts and that they explain carefully.
That they do their job as professionals in insulting, in personal attacks, in puppet theatre in which they takes turns to beat each other over the head with a stick.

And all this without saying anything about energy, innovation, transport, health, the economy.
Without making clear proposals that can be verified by the voters.

Information is the content, the media are the containers.
These have taken on the role of containers themselves, empties to be thrown away without the contents.
They have become the product, like Mike Bongiorno when he was advertising Rovagnati. ham.

They are like matrioshka dolls that contain other matrioshka dolls.
After fassinodalemabondi, you find berlusconirutellicasini, and then finigiovanardicalderoli and then lunardimaroniviolante, and so on until you are exhausted.

In the matrioshka dolls I just want to find the programme laid out by the government, perhaps even read out by a TV announcer.
Our employees should at least hand over the relevant documents to the announcers.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 02:05 AM in Wailing Wall | Comments (3)
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January 19, 2006

The preverbal grandpa

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Whoever has a deaf grandparent should now call them a preverbal grandparent in accordance with recent government regulations.
Deafness has now been abolished by law, now we’ve got preverbality. It makes little difference whether deaf people disagree and would like to be called deaf, without hearing.

There are numerous people in Italy who are deaf, of whom many are partially or totally without hearing. And evidently, it’s with these people in mind that the TV advertising explodes into a greater volume of decibels during the programme intervals (but wasn’t that forbidden?).

Preverbalism is a significant step forward, a new frontier: blind people will soon be called pre-sighted, people with paralysis called pre-motor, those who are impotent pre- (OK, here you can invent the words if you like…).

Deaf people ask to be able to communicate, to be integrated into workplaces and schools. They don’t ask for lexical piety. Sub-titles should be obligatory by law in TV programmes and on films (the DVD of my 2006 show will have Italian sub-titles). And, by law, hearing aids should be free for children who have partial hearing and for others without the means to buy them.

Those who are profoundly deaf, use sign language to talk to each other, a language that has a capacity for expression on a par with spoken language and can be compared to any language like the English language. They are deaf, not pre-verbal.

People who are hard of hearing should not be derided by shameful publicity (like some I’ve seen) in which the are portrayed with the ears of an ass to advertise the brand name of hearing aids, neither should they be enticed to buy hearing aids that are even more miniature and more costly just because the don’t want the equipment to be noticed.

And then, we need to look to the future. With acoustic pollution, the people who are deaf will be us and our children. We need to learn sign language: we will all become post-verbal.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:02 PM in Information | Comments (5)
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Have fun!

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There's a world photographic archive that is growing real fast.
Anyone can put in her/his photos.
Now, with a program called Retrievr, you can draw a picture, e.g. a kid, and you get all the photos that look alike in the archive.
It's great, try it out.

PS: use colors

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 09:48 PM in Technology/Internet | Comments (2)
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Metal workers: waiting for 10 euro in convenient instalments

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The contract for the terms and conditions for workers in metal industries has not made progress for a year.
Ever since I was a child it's been stalled! It's one of the mysteries of the universe.

The metal workers' negotiations have stalled because the Unions are asking for an increase of 100 euro and the employers in the Federmeccanica are only willing to go up to 94.5 euro.

The metal workers’ negotiations have stalled because the Unions want an allowance of 25 euro for the workers without Union-controlled contracts and therefore with low wages and the employers in the Federmeccanica have offered an allowance of 10 euro in convenient yearly instalments.

For a year, 1,624,600 people having been asking for a ridiculously small increase.
Negotiations are dragging on for a difference of 5.50 euro.
In response to an allowance of 25 euro for those who have a subsistence wage the response is 10 euro in convenient yearly instalments.

The metal workers are one of the few categories of people who work in Italy. They see examples of enrichment using laws of the State and even changing those that don’t allow this.
The metalworkers are one of the few categories of people who pull in their belts and produce real things, things that are solid, that you can touch, not the nothing-industry of the financepublicitymedia.

The metal workers are angry as they’ve had enough, so yesterday they blocked trains and motorways throughout Italy.

No! This should not be happening.

I propose an alternative: let’s set up an Authority that evaluates the earnings of the financiers, of the capitalists-without-capital, of the managers, over the last few years.
If their companies have developed and have been the source of employment, then their earnings will be confirmed.
If not, there’ll be a tiny expropriation of their earnings to renew this contract and for future contracts.
It would be enough to have Tronchetti in tiny yearly slices of instalments.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 01:50 AM in Economics | Comments (5)
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January 17, 2006

Miracle in Milan

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Fo as Mayor of Milan would be a miracle.
One of those things that happen every so often in a lifetime, a great thing.
A ray of light in the smog, in the political economy, in the apathy, in the lack of courage.

An alternative to the interchangeable candidate of the right or of the left.
To the smoothorderlyoilypartycandidate.
To the smoothcosmeticisedalliedpartycandidate.
To skyscrapers and car parks.

Miracles are already happening in the world, in Chile with the election of Bachelet and in Liberia with the election of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
Milan has to come back and surprise us, to make us dream.

Fo is honest and honesty should be the discriminating criteria for political choice today in Italy.
We’ve got nothing else.

With Fo, we’ve got the chance to move into Europe, with bicycles on the roads, with parks for the children, with the return of the joy of living, with exhibitions, with the citizens in the centre of every choice about water, energy, the internet.

Fo frightens the right wing and its property developers, and he frightens the left wing and its mouldy internal balances of power.

Fo is frightening.
No-one is talking of Fo.
OK I’m talking about him, using his words, with his fabulous election address:
“I’m not a moderate”,

that I invite you to give out to your friends.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:26 PM in Politics | Comments (15)
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January 16, 2006

Milk on Tap

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In Roncadella, at the entrance to Reggio Emilia, we had the inauguration of a new agricultural company in October. This offers the first automatic distribution in Emilia Romagna of freshly expressed milk.

The milk is produced from cows fed on non-GM food.
The price of the fresh milk is 1 euro per litre (30 cents less than the supermarket price for a similar product)
Turn up with your glass bottle fill up and off you go!
You can also fill up with quantities valued 25 cents and 50 cents.
After 24 hours, the milk remaining undistributed is used to make ricotta and other cheeses.

It’s a shame that the law in Emilia Romagna allows for these distributors only in the agricultural sites and not, as requested by the Coldiretti {association of agricultural producers} even in supermarkets, schools, and canteens as happens in Lombardy and countries of Northern Europe.

The length of time the milk can be kept is 2 days if you keep it in the fridge and after that if you boil it, another 2 days.

It’s a great idea: there’s no waste packaging as glass bottles are used and prices are lowered.

Fresh milk on tap, from cows reared near home, cows fed on non-GM, fewer lorries travelling from one part of Italy to another.

Let’s start with simple things, revolutions happen even like that, with new Regional Laws to have fresh wholesome milk, and at low cost.

I’d start with the Liguria Region, that way I can save a bit straight away.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:37 PM in Economics | Comments (9)
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January 15, 2006

State Publishing

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Have you ever heard about public funding (using our money) of publishing?

We're talking about the financing of newspapers and magazines, some of which have incredible names like: "Il campanile nuovo" (The new bell-tower) or "Il mucchio selvaggio" (The wild bunch).

Figures for funding for 2003 have been released. To cite a few: "La Padania”: 4 million euro; “L’Unità”: 6.8 million euro; “Il Foglio”:3.5 million euro Opinioni Nuove – Libero Quotidiano”: 5.3 million euro; “Avvenire”: 5.9 million euro; “Il Manifesto”: 4.4 million euro; “Sportsman – Cavalli e Corse”: 2.5 million euro.

There’s a whole bunch of varieties of newspapers and magazines that can get access to this funding:
- publications of political movements
- newspapers edited by co-operatives that have been publications of political movements
- newspapers and periodicals published by co-operatives of journalists
- periodicals of moral entities (charities)
- etc. etc.

The finance law 2006 23/12/2005 n.266 is continuing this funding even for 2006.
I don’t agree with this law.

A newspaper should be paid for at the newsagent’s not through taxation.

The directors of newspapers must not be employees of our employees (the ones that called themselves politicians)
Let’s put a stop to “assisted” information.
Anyone can be a publisher using the money from Italian taxpayers.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 08:11 PM in Information | Comments (11)
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Abolishing the penal code

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If this Government lasts a few more months it will abolish the penal code.

It's latest exploit is the "Pecorella law" just approved in Parliament.

The law establishes that if a defendant is found not guilty, the prosecution cannot appeal but can only take the case to the Court of Cassazione.
A defendant who has been found guilty, however, has the right to appeal and if the appeal fails, to also go to the Court of Cassazione. The limitation of the powers of the prosecutor is a grave violation of the equality of powers of people taking on different roles in a trial, as established by the Constitution.

To get a better idea, let’s consider a game of football between Boccassini’s team and Previti’s team.
If at the end of the first half Boccassini is winning, Previti can play the second half and extra time.
If however Previti is winning at the end of the first half, Boccassini only has extra time and no second half at all.  

If this were really to happen in a football championship, there would be uproar.
Even Mediaset would throw itself into the arena because it could only broadcast a piece of the game.
But what is just unthinkable for a game is the new reality for an Italian judicial trial.

Another effect of the “Pecorella” law which is always happening, even when the defendant has appealed, is the transformation of the judgement of the Court of Cassazione (which should decide exclusively about whether the law was applied properly) into a third level of judgement into the “merit” of the case, that is a re-examination of the whole process of the trial that has taken place.

This means:

- turning upside down the role of the Court of Cassazione
- increase in the length of trials (and they are already shamefully long)
- multiplication of the tools used for appeal and for delay
- unmanageability of the Court of Cassazione, which will then go on strike
 
If we combine all this with the reduction in the terms  of prescription {to specify a maximum delay before conviction} (ex Cirielli law) we can calmly say that the effects of the “Pecorella” law will be turmoil.

Final blow: the European Human Rights Commissioner Alvaro Gil-Robles published on 14 December 2005 a 60-page document against the administration of justice in Italy.

PS: the dwarf carrier of prescription has been to the tribunal to testify. Everyone was surprised because he said nothing.
He did well: if he had said something, they would have arrested him for false testimony.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 07:44 PM in Wailing Wall | Comments (2)
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Citizen Primaries: Energy - Fausto Bertinotti

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The Citizen Primaries that I’ve started on this Blog have received more support from another Political Party. Talking about Energy, here’s Fausto Bertinotti, secretary of Rifondazione Comunista.

Dear Beppe,

Allow me to thank you publicly for the initiatives that over the years you have promoted and thank you for the interest that you have created among the citizens.
Let me say that you remind each one of us to think of every day problems and the associated contradictions.
And you give us concrete proposals, about concrete topics that we need to give immediate and certain responses to so that we can involve all of us.

As regards us in the Rifondazione Comunista Party, a left-wing force dedicated to the search for “another possible world” we note that you give support to an innovative idea which is gaining ground in society: that of the participation and democratic and popular involvement in the decisions that are important for everyone’s life, politics, the economy and the day to day things of life.

You are talking about Citizen Primaries and I’m saying that this is a route for giving a sign of great discontinuity with the past, the route for giving a voice to every woman and man, the route for a real change of direction to the widest possible sharing and democratic participation.
We have always been in favour, and we always will be in favour of every form, the widest possible of participatory democracy.

And turning to Energy. From the pages of your site, dear Beppe, you propose detailed points in your programme that can be shared, but you also have elements that are of strong discontinuity that we have long been waiting for with respect to the policies of the past. And this, in my opinion, is one of the elements that is most characteristic of the proposals of Rifondazione Comunista both with regards to energy and in regards to other topics as well.

For this reason, your proposals should be supported and encouraged. Without going on much longer, I’d like to draw the attention of any reader to clean energy, saving energy, protection and respect for the territory, quality of life of women and men, efficient public transport, non-polluting and at the service of all women and all men.
We also believe like you, that it is possible to have another development model and another model of life.

I’m certain that together we will commit to supporting and giving strength to these projects, I send you my most cordial greetings”

Fausto Bertinotti

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 01:48 AM in Citizen Primaries | Comments (3)
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January 14, 2006

The end of resources

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I've asked Lester Brown for some forecasts about what we can expect in the future. He's one of the most important analysts of the environment, founder of the Worldwatch Institute, and defined by the Washington Post as: “one of the most influential thinkers in the world”.

Here’s what he has to say (this is worrying!):

"As we head into the New Year, I would like to reflect on how our global economy is on an environmental path that the earth cannot sustain. While this has long been clear to ecologists, what is happening in China is now making it clear to economists as well.

Among the basic resources, such as grain and meat, oil and coal, and steel, China has now eclipsed the United States in consumption of all but oil. If China's economy expands at 8 percent per year, income per person will match the current U.S. level by 2031. At that point, its 1.45 billion people will be consuming more of many resources, for example, oil and paper, than the world now produces.

There goes the world's oil. There go the world's forests.

The western economic model--the fossil-fuel-based, auto-centered, throwaway economy--is not going to work for China. If it does not work for China, it will not work for India, which by 2031 will have a population even larger than China's. Nor will it work for the 3 billion other people in developing countries who are also dreaming the "American dream."

And in an increasingly integrated world economy, where all countries are competing for the same oil, grain, and steel, the existing economic model will not work for industrial countries either. Sustaining economic progress now depends on shifting to a renewable-energy-based, reuse/recycle economy with a diversified transport system. Business as usual--Plan A--cannot take us where we want to go.

It is time for Plan B, time to build a new economy and a new world. Plan B has three components:

1- a restructuring of the global economy so that it can sustain civilization;
2- an all-out effort to eradicate poverty, stabilize population, and restore hope; and
3- a systematic effort to restore the earth's natural systems.

Glimpses of the new economy can be seen in the wind farms of Western Europe, the solar rooftops of Japan, the fast-growing hybrid car fleet of the United States, the reforested mountains of South Korea, and the bicycle-friendly streets of Amsterdam.

Virtually everything we need to do to build the new economy is already being done in one or more countries. I discuss these issues in my new book "Plan B 2.0," which can be read for free at www.earth-policy.org.”

Les Brown

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 01:45 AM in Ecology | Comments (4)
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Citizen Primaries: Energy - Antonio Di Pietro

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The Citizen Primaries that I’ve started on this Blog have received more support from another Political Party. Talking about Energy, here’s Antonio Di Pietro, President of Italia dei Valori.

“Dear Beppe,

Having read your Blog I’ve had a think and decided that it’ll be a pleasure to support your “Citizen Primaries” initiative. I’m confirming the support of Italia dei Valori and I’m also sending you a brief contribution explaining our position regarding alternative energy sources and the energy question. I think that this topic should be at the top of the political agenda.

Energy is needed to live and for economic development, both in Italy and in the whole world. To a great extent, it is the solution to many of the problems troubling third world countries. Electrical energy in fact means fridges where we can keep pharmaceuticals (one of the main health needs in Africa) electrical pumps to extract and purify water, generators to facilitate the activities in hospitals and so on.

We know there’s the demand, but how are we going to produce it? Using coal? Methane? Nuclear? And then how are we going to protect the environment from the resulting pollution?
Up till now we have seen a definite tension between energy and the environment, almost a duel to the death: the means of producing energy are destroying the environment. The over-protection of the environment is hindering the solution to vital problems for millions of human lives.

Recently, however, fortunately, science and conscience are offering us different solutions.
In fact, what we need to do is to focus on renewable sources, like photovoltaic cells, solar energy, thermodynamics, wind power, biomass, micro hydroelectric generation, energy coming from the tides and the movement of the sea, while keeping in mind also the “old renewables” such as “big hydroelectric” projects and geothermal sources (Italy is particularly well endowed here).

Renewable sources in the future will be not only a great environmental resource, but also a great economic resource when the oil production starts to slacken off as resources are exhausted, since we can only pump so much oil from the earth’s layers (according to the USA’s Department of Energy, this will happen soon).

For the moment, it will be necessary to turn attention and investment towards the use of cogeneration of electricity and heat, as well as to electricity generating stations using natural gas (methane) that will give a better return.
It will also be necessary to focus maximum attention on a hydrogen-based economy.
In fact if hydrogen is generated from renewable resources, this could solve many future problems: from “stock-piling” of the renewable resources (so avoiding shortages or at particular moments) to transport which could use electric motors and hybrid engines and thus reduce dangerous polluting emissions.

In this light, even basic research is important, especially in the area of applied nanotechnology, for example renewable resources, mainly photovoltaics which makes use of the a resource in which Italy is rich: the sun.

Thus the Government programme must contain clear investments in this direction.
These new applied technologies will have to move the various sophisticated levers of the economy, producing many new jobs and thus income and at the same time saving the planet from the environmental catastrophe and from the inevitable termination of the limited natural resources.
Only in this way, with patience and tenacity, can we transform the environmental dead-end into a true development opportunity.

Antonio Di Pietro - dipietro@antoniodipietro.it

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 01:24 AM in Citizen Primaries | Comments (4)
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January 12, 2006

Once upon a time, there was an employee, in fact, two employees

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Photo: Trieste

Tonight, I'm going to tell you a story, a lovely story:

"Once upon a time there was, and even today there is, a person hoping to be Mayor of Trieste, Ettore Rosato, and a Mayor who is stepping down, Roberto Dipiazza.
Once upon a time there were, and even today there are 110 young people of the group: "Beppe Grillo di Trieste".
There was even a good bank, la Banca Etica (the Ethical Bank), and an association, that was also good, la Contrada – Teatro Stabile di Trieste, that helped the young people, that is the employers!

Employers of whom?” you’ll ask. Trieste’s Mayor.

This truth was revealed by a post containing a magic word: the word “employee”.

And it transformed simple citizens into employers of politicians, mayors, members of the lower and upper houses of Parliament and so on.
No one had thought about it before.

These people were paid by us, but they did what they wanted. “For what reason?” you’ll ask me again. Because they had forgotten that they were employees. They had fallen prey to a wicked spell and they thought they were owners.

But not because they were above themselves, simply out of ignorance. It was enough to explain to them that they were employees! And the great young people of Trieste did just that.

They met up with the candidates for Lord Mayor, and after a job interview, before giving them any job, they made them sign a document (both Rosato and Dipiazza) in which they declared that they were employees!”

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 09:18 PM in Politics | Comments (11)
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Captains Courageous

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I've decided to be a Captain Courageous, one who if offered a big state enterprise by the Head of the Government, buys it using a loan from the banks.
The debt is then off-loaded into the company and later on, the company is sold, money is gained, namely the added value.

I've got courage and I want to ask this Government to sell me its share in ENI and I'm also asking Banca Intesa, Unicredit and San Paolo IMI to lend me the money to do this.

They can’t refuse.
Everyone’s doing it.
The Captains Courageous have done it with the sale of Telecom Italia, Tronchetti (the little log) has done it with the re-sale of Telecom Italia.
Why not me?

Italy is the land of navigators, saints and other things that I forget, but also of capitalists without capital as written in Newsweek.

Capitalists without any money who buy companies loading them with debts, then to recover from the indebtedness, make no investments, thinking only of the spot value of the shares in the market, sell the company piece-meal to get the results, when they have gained enough, they hand over what’s left.

OK, I believe that I can be a captain courageous, no problem.
The only thing I need now is a “dalemino” (hint: little D'Alema).

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 07:55 PM in Politics | Comments (2)
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January 11, 2006

Citizen Primaries: Energy. Pecoraro Scanio.

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The Citizen Primaries initiative of this Blog have received their first expression of support from a Party Secretary. Here's the opinion of Alfonso Pecorario Scanio of the Verdi (Green Party) on the Energy proposals

"Dear Beppe,

Having discussed this with the National Executive, I’m writing to tell you that the Verdi are formally supporting the Citizen Primaries initiative and your proposals concerning energy which anyway, coincide perfectly with our ideas and our programme. We commit to get the Union to accept these ideas and to get them into the Government programme to the greatest extent  possible. Il Sole che Ride {The Laughing Sun} is already committed, in all the local and regional authorities where it is present, to develop incentives for saving and improving the efficiency of energy use, to develop safe sources that are clean and renewable and for having sustainable mobility. These have always been our priorities.”

Alfonso Pecoraro Scanio, President of the Verdi

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 07:00 PM in Citizen Primaries | Comments (8)
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January 10, 2006

The Roll of Bloggers

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Chart: world ranking of sources of information on line: websites (dark) and Blogs (Light)

Information is based on trust.
Whoever has a bad reputation can say what they like but they won’t be believed.
They can write what they want and use newspapers and TV, but they won’t be believed.
They can be the leader of the Government, they can participate (but I’m saying it just as a hypothesis) in 2 TV programmes one after the other in the early evening, be interviewed with perpetual bowing and all the same, they won’t be believed.
There’s a crisis of credibility circulating and a boom in incredibility.
The bigger the sensation, the more you think you are credible even if you’re incredible.

> But who is it that makes the credible incredible?
The media.

> Why do they do this?
Because they are owned by groups in the economy.

> Why do groups in the economy own the media?
To do their business better.

> And the journalists?
The journalists have got families, they adjust, or rather they follow the editorial line. They are dependent on the editor rather than on the readers.

> And the Union of Journalists?
That’s part of the past.

> Why?
Because the Internet has invented Bloggers.

> What’s a Blogger?
Someone who writes on the Internet without having to answer to anyone except to their own readers.

> And the Honour Roll of Bloggers?
The readers create it. If a Blog is visited, it’s already on the Honour Roll.

> And the old media?
They will disappear. It’s a question of feeling and of links.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:50 PM in Technology/Internet | Comments (15)
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January 09, 2006

"La Settimana"

It can happen that what is real becomes virtual.

Examples of this happening in Italy can be found; for instance the economy is virtual, innovation is virtual, the Great Engineering Works are virtual, employment is virtual.

Entrepreneurs are virtual, Boards of Directors are virtual and what are certainly virtual, in fact superlatively virtual are the relationships between the political parties and the banks.
Only information is post-virtual, by now it’s beyond that, it’s pure spirit.

In this virtual world, I’ve decided to make the Blog real.

I’m doing that by creating a printable magazine: “La settimana” (the week), which contains the Blog posts of the last seven days with a summary and my brief editorial.

“La Settimana” will be available every Monday starting from today and the people signed up to the Blog will be notified when it’s published.


P.S. The English version is on it's way, you can have a look at the Italian version for the moment.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:26 PM in Information | Comments (5)
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Citizen Primaries: Energy

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Up till now it's been our employees who've done Primaries.

Now's the time for the employers to do Primaries.

From today I'll be publishing proposals about important issues like Energy, Transport, Electoral Regulations and I'll be assisted by recognised experts in the field, so that I can receive your comments.

The posts will be visible on the right hand strip under the title: "Citizen Primaries" together with your comments right up to the time of the elections.

I’m also inviting representatives of the Political Parties to send their views on the different points dealt with, to this Blog for publication.

Proposals for Energy

The efficiency with which we use energy in this country is really low.
At least half the energy consumption is wasted and this can be avoided by using technologies that are economically mature. By reducing the waste of energy and increasing the efficiency of energy use, not only will we have the maximum possible reduction of CO2 emissions for the same investment, but we reduce the imports of fossil fuels and the savings allow us to pay for investments without having to get public financing.

The increase in efficiency and the reduction of waste are pre-requisites for the development of renewable sources, which currently cost more and produce less than fossil fuels. Only if we reduce waste and improve efficiency will their contribution to energy needs be significant and the capital needed to cover the costs can be recovered.


Consumption of imported fossil fuels is divided into three roughly equal areas:

- ambient heating
- thermo-electric production
- transport

If the law 10/91 were rigorously applied, to heat our buildings we would consume 14 litres of oil (or cubic metres of methane) for each square metre of floor space each year. But in fact we consume more.

From 2002, German law and a more recent regulation in force in the Province of Bolzano, fixi 7 litres of oil, or cubic metres of methane for each square metre of floor space each year as the maximum allowed consumption for ambient heating. This is less than half of the average Italian consumption.

Using the labelling system set up for white goods, in the Province of Bolzano, this level corresponds to Class C, while Class B corresponds to consumption not exceeding 5 litres of oil, or cubic metres of methane and Class A to not more than 3 litres of oil, or cubic metres of methane for each square metre of floor space each year.

For ambient heating, energy policy designed to reduce CO2 emissions which will also avoid economic sanctions under the Kyoto agreement for those countries which do not meet the requirements, should be articulated as follows:

- immediate application of the regulations, already set out in the 10/91 law and outlined in the European Directive 76/93 about the energy certification of buildings

- Class C definition set out by Bolzano Province set as the maximum consumption level for the granting of a building license for new constructions, and for the restructuring of existing buildings

- reduction by at least 10 per cent in five years of energy consumption of the buildings occupied by public bodies, with financial penalties for non-compliance

- reasonable facilities on bank loans and simplification of the regulations regarding contracts for energy restructuring using the method called esco (energy service company), that is carried out at the expense of who does the work and repaid from the money saved by who uses the energy;

- working out regulations about paying for thermal energy consumption in condominiums, as set out in the European Directive 76/93, as already applied in other European countries.


The average yield of Enel’s {Enel is the Italian State Electricity company} thermoelectric generating stations is about 38%. The standard for the construction of the new generation of combined cycle plants is 55 to 60%

Distributed co-generation of electrical energy and of heat, with the use of heat at the point of production and the transportation to a distant place of the electrical energy allows for the use of the energy potential from combustibles to go up to 94%. The inefficiencies and the actual waste of thermoelectric production are not acceptable technologically, economically nor morally, for the following reasons: because of the devastating effects on the environment, because they accelerate the end of availability of fossil fuels, because it means that the richer countries corner the market leaving insufficient for poorer countries. From the start it is not acceptable to remove what is necessary from those who need it, but if it is then wasted, it is not conceivable.

To increase the supply of electrical energy it is not necessary to construct new power stations of any type. The first thing to do is to increase the efficiency and reduce the waste of existing power stations. At the same time we need to increase the efficiency of use of the energy produced (lamps, white goods, air conditioning, industrial machinery). After that, if the energy supply is still insufficient, we can consider constructing new electricity generating stations.

For the production of electrical energy, an energy policy aimed at reducing CO2 emissions while increasing the supply, must be articulated as follows:


Strengthening of existing power stations and reduction in the impact they have on the environment
Providing incentives for the distributed production of electrical energy with technologies that use fossil fuels more efficiently, like distributed co-generation of electrical energy and heat, starting with buildings that are high energy-consumers like hospitals, commercial centres, industries using heat technology, sports centres etc.

Extension of the possibility to return energy to the national grid and to sell electrical energy even from micro-generating plants producing less then 20 kW

Providing incentives for the distributed production of electrical energy with extensions to all renewable sources and to distributed micro-generation regulations for energy accounting, tied to the kilowatt-hours sent to the grid during peak hours and excluding any produced during off-peak hours.

Providing incentives for distributed production and on the spot consumption of thermal energy from renewable sources (excluding from incentives the distribution over a distance of heat because of the inefficiencies and environmental impact)

Rigorous application of regulations set down by decree about the certification of energy efficiency

Elimination of the incentives set out in CIP 6/1992 (Provvedimento del Comitato interministeriale prezzi) for the combustion of refuse since refuse was inserted without any techno-scientific basis, among renewable resources.

Providing incentives for the production of bio-combustibles while obliging agricultural production aimed at this to increase organic substances in the soil.

In the transport sector, interventions are needed at a technical level where incentives must develop more efficient and less-polluting means of transport as well as at an organisational level to favour the development of public transport and remove incentives for using private vehicles especially in highly congested urban areas.

In urban transport the pivotal point is the strengthening of collective use public transport and the introduction of individual–use public transport, with electric motors powered from a network and not by batteries.

A more interesting version of the traditional trolley bus imprudently abandoned in recent decades can be created by positioning networks of electrical cables underneath the road surface In this way it’s possible to provide power not only for collective public transport, but also for fleets of public automobiles for individual use with payment on consumption by using pre-paid electronic cards. The combined effect f these technical and organisational measures can make it feasible to place ever more rigorous limitations on private vehicle traffic and at the same time increasing the speed of movement and reconstructing the possibility to have the function of “door to door” which car drivers in urban areas have not seen for some time.

Starting from these preconditions, all these technological innovations aimed at reducing polluting emissions from cars start to have an effective utility in terms of reducing the consumption of fossil fuels and the impact on the environment. They can also increase the number of kilometres travelled per litre of fuel.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:13 AM in Citizen Primaries | Comments (4)
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January 08, 2006

(Costly?) Kidnappings and happy endings

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The pattern is always the same:


  1. a few Italian tourists, usually out-of-season to save on costs, go off for a holiday.

  2. They go to any country chosen from Iraq, Sudan, Yemen, Iran, Jordan or Syria

  3. They are kidnapped

  4. The newspapers talk about them on the front pages

  5. The kidnappers dictate the conditions

  6. The Farnesina (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) reassures the Italian people

  7. The Farnesina swears that it will not pay a ransom

  8. The hostages are freed

  9. The Parishes ring the bells in joy

  10. The ex-hostages are photographed with a smiling Minister of the country concerned

  11. The ex-hostages are interviewed on their return by newspapers (front page) and by the TV

  12. The Italian Government expresses its satisfaction

  13. The Farnesina swears they have not paid any ransom


The word of our Ministry of Foreign Affairs cannot be questioned.
However, to remove even the teeniest doubt, I suggest a new rule: those who go on holiday in risky countries should take out insurance against kidnapping before they leave.
The ransom is then paid by the insurance company.
If they don’t want to get insurance and go away all the same, they should hand over a fifth of their salary to the State so that the State can pay the ransom openly and then claim back the money in the fullness of time.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 02:44 AM in Wailing Wall | Comments (8)
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January 06, 2006

The Padellaro Scoop

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Today l'Unità (left wing daily newspaper) has placed me on its front page.
After doing some research work in which they discovered that il Messaggero (a Newspaper of Rome) had talked about my boat, they reported an extract from Vincenzo Cerami's article, which I have displayed in bold type:

"Then frankly, all these little virgins, that are portrayed because Fassino supports the bank of the co-operatives or because D'Alema is passionate about boats, brings a smile to the face of even the most bigoted of the veteran communists. Shame on you: the left knows all about finance and hostile bids, their directors even talk confidentially with the bankers. It is immoral: banks and hostile bids should be left to the right wing parties, which deals with these matters. Left wing politicians must go around with shoes of terrible brands, enjoy the sea using a rowing-boat, and they should dress as poor people (if they have the misfortune to not have been born poor). In fact the boat of Beppe Grillo is not a scandal for anyone, the one belonging to D'Alema scandalizes.”

The problem, dear Padellaro, is that you have reported an untruth on the front page.
An untruth extrapolated from an article written by someone else. I do not own a boat. I have had one, but I sold it last summer.

Travaglio come away, your reputation is going to suffer if you stay there.
If you want, come and write on my Blog.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:56 PM in Information | Comments (8)
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The air is ours

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The crazy idea of having Sundays without cars is being repeated again this year. On a similar footing to an ancient pagan rite that is celebrated without being able to remember why, or like a modern way of invoking the rain to clean the air. Tomorrow the gas chamber called Milan will stop, while the employee administrators formigonialbertinipenati after destroying the Bosco di Gioia {Joyous Wood}, 180 trees, a tiny green lung, one of the few in Milan, they are now rushing to construct the new building for the Region, three massive skyscrapers in the area of the Fiera and carparkscarparkscarparkscarparks.

Are these employee administrators or property developers?
Are they stupid or just playing as if they were?

Carlo Monguzzi, the leader of the Green Party for the Lombardy Region, has declared that the 5 year plan for air has received a budget allocation of 2 million Euros for 2006. And only as a result of an amendment from the Greens. The plan was going to receive 600 Million Euro, but this money will go to finance the new skyscraper for the Region.

They tell us that the polluted air is the fault of the nice weather and because of central heating.
For us to be at peace, we have to hope that there will be rain, snow, or a tiny tsunami.
We have to choose whether to die of lung cancer or to die of cold or bad weather. Or an alternative choice: send these employees home, and claim back the air, our air.

In Milan, there are no cycle paths, or the few that exist, are occupied by parked cars.
The centre of Milan is a depot for four wheeled drives, trucks and buses.
In Milan the electric bus doesn’t exist, the buses use white petrol, cleanclean (they take us for a ride even with words). In Milan they construct car parks, but the car parks attract the cars.
In Milan the children have direct access to carbon monoxide in their baby carriers.

We need to do something and not just in Milan.
Let’s claim back the air.
Our air.

I propose a symbolic gesture to start off with. I’m asking for the help of the Meet Up groups.
Every first Saturday of the month, let’s invade the cities of Italy with bicycles.
Hundreds, millions of bicycles.

For our air.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:59 PM in Transport/Getting About | Comments (10)
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The least worst

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Marco Travaglio doesn't agree with me about Fassino.

I'm sticking to my opinion: that he's the least worst of the DS.
It's possible to say that he's guilty of political naivety and ignorance, in a way that he probably didn't know.
And it's true that, in his role as Secretary of the Party, if you don't know, you don't exist.

But if Fassino were obliged to resign for this reason, what about the rest of the Parliament, the “prescritti”, those definitively convicted of crimes, those who have colluded with the mafia, what should they do?

I’d have an idea for them.


Dear Beppe,

I don’t agree with the distinction you make between D’Alema and Fassino. While waiting for the magistrates to establish who has contravened laws and in what way, we already know (from secret intercepts, but published in Il Giornale) that Fassino did not tell the truth when he affirmed that he merely asked Consorte for information without intervening in Unipol’s bid to take over the BNL.

As well as getting information, he forgot to inform Consorte that what he was telling him  - the “concert” between Unipol and his murky allies, before starting on the hostile bid obligatory by law – was a crime. In fact he participated sentimentally in the operation, giving advice, giving support (“We are owners of a Bank …- Let’s take everything home…”) Exactly as was done by Ugo Sposetti, the Treasurer of the party, evidently in crisis about his identity (“We of Unipol…”).

We will see if and when we get to see his part of the chat line, what D’Alema said. Unfortunately, as I happened to say on 14 January 2004 at the assembly of the spinning tops (the complete text is available on the site: www.marcotravaglio.it), at the pinnacle of the DS there are characters who have come from far away and who have never wanted to engage with Tangentopoli.

That is what has come out that is politically and morally relevant in the “Clean Hands” trials. Fassino, as you have reminded us, is from Turin. Even Primo Greganti, was from Turin and he has been convicted three times (for corruption, and for illicit financing) for having made a hole in the PCI-PDS. And who was the most prominent spokesperson for the PCI-PDS in Turin?

On a penal level, nothing has ever come out against Fassino. But on a political level? In 2000, when he was Minister of Justice, Fassino proposed – to “de-criminalize financial offences” including bankruptcy.

What was he dreaming of? There’s a little story that I told at the Anti-TAV demonstrations: about the Hypermarket “Le Gru” in the red town of Grugliasco. The biggest hypermarket in Europe. It was constructed by the red co-ops on behalf of the French company Trema, and Euromercato (originally Montedison, then Standa that is Berlusconi). The agent Alberto Milan confessed that he had paid backhanders to local politicians, including 2 communist mayors Ferrara and Bernardi.
”If Bernardi has accepted back-handers, I am a cretin”, declared solemnly the then provincial secretary Sergio Chiamparino. Two days later Bernardi confessed. And at the end it turned out that the secretary who declared himself a “cretin” had received a little gift from the agent: a mobile phone. It also turned out that others interested in the Le Gru affair included Greganti, and his semi-partner Aldo Brancher, who was at that time the right hand of

Confalonieri, who is today a member of Parliament of Forza Italia and is the under secretary of the Institutional Reforms.(the one identified by the documentation of the Milan Inquiry as the collector of the payments made by Fiorani & Co. to the politicians of the centre right). As well as Fassino. In 1993 the president of Euromercato, Carlo Orlandini told the judges that in 1989 he met up with Fassino, who was at that time the provincial secretary of the PCI, to talk about the Le Gru project. And straight after the interrogation, he sent a fax to Fassino to tell him about what he had said to the judges. Why did he have to send that fax and thus violate the secrecy of the investigation? And what was the connection of the secretary of a Party with a hypermarket? Here there’s nothing that’s criminally relevant. There’s something that is perhaps more serious: an old and sick conception of politics, that doesn’t manage to keep itself separate from business activity.

What is criminally relevant, however, is the affair of the Honourable Cesare De Piccoli. When he was a PDS member of the European Parliament, elected in Venice, (and following the dalemian line), he was interrogated by Di Pietro about some Fiat money: 200 million in a Swiss account named “Accademia”.

He asked the judge to absolve him, but he got “prescription”: he had taken the money, there was a proper crime (illicit financing), but he was lucky that the time had run out. Straight after this, D’Alema promoted him to the position of undersecretary in the Government, and as it turned out – of Industry. Recently he has passed to Fassino, who elected him head of his secretariat. Now he is responsible for the economic and industrial sectors of the Party. He certainly knows about industry. Or at least about Fiat.”

Marco Travaglio.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 04:17 PM in Politics | Comments (5)
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January 05, 2006

Do not fear, you’ve read correctly

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The beautiful posters cheering up our city in December have disappeared. The wonderful achievements about the economy, about English and Internet in the schools, about great engineering works, about the Pact with the Italians maintained to the hilt are no longer there. Shame.

Going to the office, to school, going for a walk with the dog, it was good to read about the Operation Truth and the responses that the Italians had written in felt tip pens.

Relevant comments.
A dialogue under the eyes of everyone.
True democracy.

And it was great to see the clown’s nose, often drawn by some admirer with a red circle on a smiling face full of hope.

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On the face of a person who has achieved all his objectives, those that, out of a sense of reserve, have not been shown on the posters.

This show of regard, even though it’s a bit strange, has made him reflect.
He’s decided to take a step backwards. To stand at the next elections without being recognised, without standing out.

And to do that starting from a new slogan: “Italia, Forza.”
Accompanied by an explanatory subtitle:
”Do not fear, you’ve read correctly.”

That the old party of 2P (Never fear, you’ve read correctly) no longer exists you can guess and someone, definitely Communist, hoped so too.

But to eliminate the name of the party from the posters is a great sign of humility, a gesture of times gone by.
A symbolic gesture and at the same time a prophetic gesture.

After the Operation Truth, why not launch an Operation Lies?

A campaign about the lies that the Italians are obstinate enough to believe: r
ecession, laws ad personam, deindustrialisation, new poverties and all the rest.

With the same subtitle:
”Never fear, you’ve read correctly.”

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 12:44 AM in Wailing Wall | Comments (12)
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January 04, 2006

H5N1: direct information

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The most "submarine-like" news of the start of 2006 is bird flu (H5N1)

No-one is talking about it.

Italians that have bought tens of thousands of doses of tamiflu will start to think that the feared effects of bird flu (millions of dead in the world) are in reality a brilliant marketing idea of the pharmaceutical companies.

Tamiflu can no longer be found anywhere (sold out) and neither do you find news of the epidemic.

Is this just chance?

I can’t help you with news about tamiflu, but I can give you information about the spread of bird flu.

The most recent death suspected to be from H5N1 happened in Indonesia on Monday 2 January at Jakarta’s Sulianti Saroso hospital.
The person struck down by the illness was often in contact with farmed chickens and is the twelfth person to die of H5N1 in Indonesia.

The death count at this point is 75 deaths from H5N1 since December 2003, all in Asia:

-Cambodia 4
-China 3
-Indonesia 12
-Thailand 14
-Vietnam 42
 

As of today, the danger of a pandemic from bird migration is considered to be marginal. The flu is spread by aeroplanes and by contaminated chickens.

This information can be found on a website that supplies up to date information about H5N1 every day: www.promedmail.org, use it to find out more and sign up to its daily newsletter.

And, if the news that you get is important, send an email to the newspapers, just like that, just to keep them informed, and send a copy also to Storace.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 01:38 AM in Health/Medicine | Comments (10)
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January 02, 2006

Short Term Contract Employees

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We are all under the influence of an enchantment.
An enchantment created by ourselves.

We have hypnotised ourselves!

We have created a group of people who talk, who create, who destroy, who influence our lives.
Journalists who pronounce sentences (based on what competence?), politicians (but anyway what kind of activity is that?), financiers who create money (but money is not creatable), Ministers (with no conscience about what they manage), company directors (who think that they and not the shareholders are the owners).

Gentlemen of nothing.

An enchantment that is sick, that rewards the worst, those that create no value, those that have no profession.
And who make politics and information into their own private creation, not as a public service.

An enchantment that marginalizes those who want to change things, who oblige our best young people to emigrate, who have caused the nation to be impoverished.

Let’s get rid of them, let’s try and annul the enchantment, people like this are no use to us, they are indispensable only to themselves.

It’s possible to break the spell with a magic ring.

Let’s have the first magic ring dedicated to our employees.
A popular draft law to limit the possibility of being elected to an Italian or a European Parliament for only two terms of office.

Obviously with a retro-active effect.

We’ve had enough of pomiciniandreottimastellacasinidalemaviolanterutelli.

No to life-long politicians, yes to employees on short-term contracts!

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:50 PM in Politics | Comments (4)
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The year of the Big Bins

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There's a good habit at the end of the year. Throw away old things from the balcony onto the car below, or, more soberly, turn them into a gift, making out that they are new/old for some friend or relative or, modern choice, get rid of them in the appropriate recycling bin.

Casini, as usual, has been quicker off the mark (but this is one of his inborn qualities) and he has recycled himself in the urban refuse, as witnessed in this photograph, without even waiting for the end of the year.

And he's in this.

He was involved when he expressed his solidarity with Dell’Utri after his judicial conviction for association with the mafia.

He was involved when he asked the Procura di Milano for explanations about telephone intercepts in which a Caltagirone was mentioned and Caltagirone is the surname of his present companion.

He was involved in his institutional role as President of the Lower House of Parliament, when the trickster electoral law was approved.

He was involved on the front page of the Corriere della Sera on the last day of the year dedicated to him and to his declarations (shame on you Mieli).

Not all of them are gentlemen like Casinibigbin who, as he himself says, is a person who is highly responsible.

The others need a tiny bit of help from the Italians to be slightly on the edge.

Draw up your own list and start with our employees, of the monopolies, of the financiers (refer: Tronchetti), of the property tycoons, of the newspaper people, of the TVs.

The year 2006 can be the year of the general cleansing; let’s all become ecological operators.
Let’s fill up those big bins.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 02:33 AM in Wailing Wall | Comments (1)
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January 01, 2006

Happy New Year Italy!

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photo: The President of Brazil, Lula da Silva

The President of Brazil, Lula and the Cardinal of San Paolo, Julio Lancellotti spent their Christmas under a viaduct, in a neighbourhood of San Paolo where the inhabitants of the street after an occupation, have created a co-operative for recycling urban refuse. One of my dear friends, Antonio Vermigli, has sent me part of Lula’s speech.

" Dear Father Julio Lancellotti, dear Cardinal Dom Claudio Hummes, dear people in authority here present, and you, my dear companions and friends, you people of the street.
with lots of sweat and in silence every day keep clean the streets of our city by removing every type of refuse that is produced, I am happy to be here underneath the Sumarè viaduct, where you have created the first co-operative for the recycling of paper and plastic in Brazil. You who are often considered to be nothing, you have managed to create a co-operative. I know how difficult it is in our country to bring about an enterprise like this, but you have done it. This is the third time that we meet up.

In 2003 we met up in Glicerio, for the opening of the Casa Cor da Rua "A House of Art for the People of the Street” called after Peppino Prisco, an Italian vice-president of the football team  Inter-Milan. Things made in Casa Cor include furniture, articles for interior design and artistic objects, all of which start off by re-using materials collected from city refuse.

In 2004 we met up at the Casa da Oraçao, the House of Prayer.
Today I assure you with serenity and strength that my Palace of Planalto is here, under your viaduct. Today I am governing from here.
Today the Government has moved to your place of work, to your place of struggle. I have listened to your reflections, your suggestions, your needs, to your request to meet up again in a few weeks to complete the project to provide job training for rubbish collectors, that we have started together.  Together, we will make this happen.

This is not just a vague promise. When I get back to Brasilia, I will call together all the ministers who need to be involved in the project, from the Minister responsible for Social Policy to the Minister for Education and I will call an inter-ministerial meeting to define your rights and to establish terms to truly recognise your work. Your recycling is resisting, you are in all ways, ecological operators.

You are providing a fundamental service for us and yet this is not recognised. On the contrary, you are considered a police problem. As Father Julio pointed out when he spoke.

Julio, I promise you that the shameful massacre of seven street-dwellers that happened in piazza della cattedrale di San Paolo in August last year for which the culprits have not even now been brought to trial even though there are witness statements and really strong evidence against them, I promise that I will talk next week to Justice Minister Bastos, to work towards a strong intervention from the Federal Justice system.

The presence here of the Mayor of Diadema, the agreement that you have signed with the Local Authorities for the employment of 72 street dwellers as street cleaners, is an important act. And it is also economically advantageous for the population, given that the Mayor has declared that the price of a ton of refuse is about 40 reais if collected by the catadores, whereas it is 150 if collected by private companies.

I listened attentively to the speech of our companion Sebastiao while he was explaining the problems of the street dwellers. I don’t know whether you Sebastiao, have a job, I’m not really sure what you do, but I assure you that with your political preparation, with your capacity to analyse, you will be ready for any type of work.

Dear Dom Claudio, we’ve known each other for many years, now you are a Cardinal, but before that you were my Bishop of San Bernardo do Campo, the place where I’m still residing, where I was working for years, where I started my activity as a Trades Unionist, where I founded the Centrale Unica dei Lavoratori first and then the Partito dei Lavoratori {Workers’ Party}.

I remember when you were at our side in demonstrations, when the police baton-charged us. I was younger then and had a flat stomach and I ran faster than you to miss the beating, because I was not a Bishop.  I am happy about your statements that your Cathedral, this Christmas is under this viaduct. We have walked together and we will continue to walk together, even though we have made errors.”

Lula da Silva.

For the New Year I wish for all Italians a President like Lula and Cardinals like Lancellotti for a better Italy.

Happy New Year. Beppe Grillo.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 06:19 AM in Information | Comments (6)
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