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October 31, 2006

An inconvenient truth

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If we want to avoid future generations spitting in our faces and demanding damages from us, we need to do something for the planet. The iguanas outside the window of my home in Genoa, look at me like a foreigner by the October summer sun. The crickets sing all night long. The bees do double the work summer/winter. Data about the greenhouse effect is by now provided daily just like the weather forecast. It is overwhelming us. Just as the waters will do for the coasts and the cities.
But there are always the sceptics. The ones that donít believe and that say there are always alternatives. Without ever saying what they are. Others who more modestly just arenít bothered. The glaciers melt. The rivers run dry. The water tables go down.
Thatís enough of catastrophe-ism. Enough of the normal catastrophic drift to avoid facing up to the problems. 279 species of plants and animals are moving northwards. Malaria arrived from the Andes. The melting of Greenlandís glaciers has doubled in the last 10 years. And the catastrophic drift continues with forecasts for our grandchildren. Those who will throw our bones away in a rubbish tip.
By 2050 the North Pole will disappear, a million species will be extinct, sea level will be up to 5 metres higher.
Al Gore has produced the film: 'An inconvenient truthí. The English version will be out on 21 November. This is the first time that Iím advertising a film. Itís a tiny tribute, a stupidity for the salvation of the planet.
Straight away we can make a contribution to improve earth with tenthingstodo.

1 Use compact fluorescent light bulbs
2 Use the car as little as possible
3 Recycle
4 Check tyre pressures on the car
5 Donít waste hot water
6 Donít buy products with lots of packaging
7 Regulate the thermostat in your home
8 Plant a tree
9 Turn off the machines in your home
10 Send this list to others. Spread the word.


They donít need great strategies, they are boy scout actions. There are no excuses. Iíll add another one. An agreement with banks that contact me for loans for the purchase of solar panels for blog readers. And then another one for Prodi: tele-working for the public administration, to get to 30/40% in a few years. Thatís all for now. Iím worn out. Look at the trailer.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 12:18 PM in Ecology | Comments (24)
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October 30, 2006

Nervous Breakdown

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I donít know about you. But my valves are starting to smoke. Nothing works anymore for anyone. Itís a day of ordinary folly every day of the year. The temperature is going up, up, up. Requesting a driving licence, a passport, a permit, any old document, just reduces us to frothing at the mouth.
If you repair white goods the technician has got to come out three times before it works. And usually itís the fridge or the hot water heater. If you get a train, itís late. If you get a plane itís on strike.
If you need a place at the local publicly run nursery, itís already taken. If the State needs to pay you back, the pay back never comes. If you donít pay a utility bill, they impound your garage. If you raise your voice to get your rights heard, they sue you for calumny. If you cross the road at the pedestrian crossing, they run you down.
If you are stuck in a wheelchair, you find the inevitable 4x4 parked on the ramps for disabled people. If thereís a gas leak in your apartment block, your home can blow up before someone comes to sort it.
If you are in commerce, you have to transform yourself into Charles Bronson. If your telephone line doesnít work, you are cut off for weeks. If you park your car, you are blocked in by a car thatís double-parked. If you object, they beat you up (at that moment you get a fire-arms permit).
If you are walking in the woods, the motorbikes and off-road vehicles arrive. If you walk along the river itís a sewer. If you stroll through the public park, itís a public refuse.
If thereís the mafia, you still have to live with the State.
And the fault is always of the others. Blessed others. The people without respect. Obviously, we are better. If we donít pay taxes, itís because they are too high. If we donít complain about the public official, itís to avoid repercussions. If we donít pay a technician for a job thatís done badly, itís because itís best not to bother.
If we donít telephone the mayor at his home at midnight to shout in a non-human way that a nursery is more important than a car park, itís because itís not done.
Itís tiring, ever more tiring living in Italy. We are submerged by shit. Perhaps itís best to start re-emerging right now. Perhaps we need to get down to the job. Do something. Defend yourselves. Iím at sub-zero tolerance.

PS Apart from a populist drift, do you think that Iíve also got a nervous breakdown?

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 03:49 PM in Wailing Wall | Comments (17)
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October 29, 2006

Dead on the National Health

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Among the black magic powers of the State are to be found the hospitals. They operate with discretion and without pausing to improve the coffers of INPS {Pensions Body}. They practise euthanasia from inefficiency.
Itís a particularly Italian approach. They canít be taken to court, but it produces great results, above all for elderly patients. They say that 90 patients a day, die from medical errors in hospitals. I donít believe that. I donít want to believe it. Itís a ridiculous number.
There must be many more. However no one really knows how many there are. There arenít official statistics. Itís best not to know. Last year the Istituto Superiore di Sanitŗ {Institute for Health} tried to measure mortality from bypass operations in the heart surgery centres.
The only result was an Italian riot. A series of litigation cases.
However there is one certain fact. And it is that out of every two patients in the world who die because of medical errors, one could have been saved. Taking the number of 90 dead a day as accurate multiplied by 365 days. Thatís an annual total of 32,850. Saveable: 16,425. The equivalent of about 30 rigid inflatables coming to Lampedusa. Donald Berwick of the Institute for Health Care Improvement, a non-profit agency, has demonstrated this with the initiative Ď100,000 livesí.
In the 3,000 American hospitals that took part, the mortality fell dramatically. 120,000 fewer deaths compared to the previous 18 month period.
It doesnít take much to save a life. There have been hardly any recorded cases of pneumonia caused by mechanical ventilation pneumonia thanks to the simple measure of keeping the patient with the head of the bed raised. The staff have committed to washing hands before touching catheters. An aspirin has been prescribed before discharging heart attack patients.
What do we prefer, reduce taxes o hang on to a multitude of pensioners? Iím not sure, but Iím a bit sorry for the patients. Thus Iím asking Berwick to come and meet me, to meet up with some heads of Italian hospitals and repeat his initiative. Then, if we succeed, weíll do it ourselves. RESET!

PS: in collaboration with www.partecipasalute.it

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:33 PM in Health/Medicine | Comments (9)
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October 28, 2006

The daisy pickers

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The Finance Police have been spying on us, Sismi {Secret Police} was spying on us, Telecom was spying on us. Who sent them?
It makes me laugh just to ask the question. Who had the power to do it, unless it was the previous government? If the elections had gone differently there would have been a coup d'ťtat. How can I say that? Intuition. The same that I guess you have too. But thatís enough now. Who did Sismi depend on? Who did the Agenzia delle Entrate {tax collection agency} depend on? Who did Telecom depend on? These people, what were they called? Letís do a bit of memory-jogging: Pollari, Tremonti, Tronchetti. Well then. Is it so difficult to get to the truth?
Call them in to the commissariato {justice centre}. Interrogate them gently. If they are a bit reticent, keep them in prison for the time needed. Even for a lifetime. So as not to pollute the evidence and for our peace of mind.
Then set up a commission for popular enquiry. Please letís avoid a parliamentary one. There would be an obvious conflict of interests. The judges would be the ones who have been ďinterceptedĒ.
Those that have done false documents to burn their documents. Certainly they did it for democracy. And also for the contents of the intercepts. After they have examined the evidence, the citizens will decide. In the full view of everyone.
Demagogy? Certainly populist anyone-istic demagogy. Words with which the coglioni (vulgar term used by Berlusconi to define those who didnít vote for him} and beautiful minds establish a distance from the citizens. But the Privacy Guarantor, what does he do for a living? Pick daisies?
And Prodi? Whyís he waiting to speak loud and clear to the country on all channels together to tell us that those responsible will be punished with no half measures? Perhaps a sign of blessing from bertinottidalemarutelli, fathersonandholyspirit? The citizens expect much more from you, employee Prodi. If you donít know how to communicate, at least have a go. We will correct you.

PS Make sure you donít miss the demonstration tomorrow morning 28/10 at 10.30 in Piazza Roma at Ancona. Itís against the construction of 2 thermoelectric power stations by Api. Numerous citizen groupings and Meet Ups from Ancona, Pesaro and Jesi will be present.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 02:40 AM in Wailing Wall | Comments (8)
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October 27, 2006

Adopt a Penguin

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Italy needs money. And I always want to help Italy. The initiative ďOro alla PatriaĒ {Gold to the Mother country} continues.
The software packages of the Public Administration will no longer cost anything. Already they cost nothing. Itís enough to switch to Open Source software. Free software that doesnít cost a Euro. In the ministries, the regions, the schools, the public hospitals, the tribunals etc. etc.
How much does the State spend to buy and to update its Microsoft packages? From tomorrow that could cost zeroeuro. Europe has started to move, look at Norway.
Chavez has already started and by 2007 half of the Venezuelan public sector will be Open Source. Open Source can be adopted straight away. Why wait? Let those public administrations that have done that, perhaps there are some, contact me via email. We will cite all of them on this blog after an inspection by trusted technicians of the Meetups.
Let all the others start to take action because they are throwing away our taxes. I invite a Minister, anyone who likes to, to give an example and make contact by writing to this blog when and how they switched to Open Source and how much it has saved for the citizens.
You know Iím going all out to study computing to find savings. And our employees have got stuck at the abacus. This is the real problem. Their strength of ignorance united with our indifference. RESET Microsoft. Switch to Open Source.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 01:11 PM in Technology/Internet | Comments (15)
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October 26, 2006

One, two, RESET!

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RESET. Iím not happy unless I do a RESET a day.
Todayís itís the turn of our employees. The ones who are camping out in the corridors of the Lower and Upper Houses and in the TV studios. Theyíve got a miserable life and they are doing it for us. They do a bit of gossip, vote in the Chamber, a few declarations.
They are drifting. To avoid a popular counter-drift I want to make a true demagogic proposal. Basically to drift in a populist and demagogic way, like an ordinary person.
Something for simple people, not coming from refined cultured people with the supremacy of politics. Something that democracies in a terminal phase need. A popular proposal for a law with the collection of signatures to reduce to 2 the number of terms of office for a parliamentarian. Retroactive.
Two and stop. Then you go back to work. Lend yourself to politics was once a common phrase. A citizen temporarily left his profession. To serve the country. Politics has become a permanent profession with indistinct boundaries. Italy is, using a popular expression, in the shit.
But who has brought us to this? And why allow them to continue to cause damage? Soon I will publish the list of parliamentarians who have served for more than 2 terms of office so that you can make this known to others on the Web.
They are the names of those responsible for the collapse, the ones who have led the country. Or will the blame always go to the recession, the boom, the heat of the summer or the conflict of interests in winter?
The parliamentarians even celebrate their anniversaries, their ten years, thirty years of permanence. But whatís this? A competition for whose electoral seat can resist? If there are no young people in politics, itís because the places have been occupied for generations.
Letís renew Parliament. Letís not weigh down these long-haul parliamentarians with further responsibility.
One, two, RESET!

PS. Another friend has left us. A giant. Good bye Bruno Lauzi.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:58 AM in Politics | Comments (32)
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October 25, 2006

Poisons in the city

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To do RESET we have to start with something. Letís start with what is round about us every day in our cities. From the poisons that we breathe.
For which we need to thank the media bosses. For their obsessive publicity for cars. The newspapers and the TV are in competition with Quattroruote {magazine dedicated to cars}.
Who dictates the petrol industry line to the media? The State that lives off the taxes on fuel, the oil companies and the car manufacturers. The politicians, as Mattei said, are only taxi drivers that pay themselves off with a tip after the journey. Whatís to be done?
Letís write a list of 12 commandments for the employee mayor. Letís ask for (and insist on getting it) a meeting so that he can sign all or some of the proposed points or even none of them if he doesnít agree. The meeting could be filmed and the reasoning of the employee could be heard on this blog.
I have listened to true experts about poisons in the city: two mothers with young babies. The ones that breathe in from their baby buggies the exhausts from the vehicles. Those that if all goes well get a chronic cough, and if it goes badly get leukaemia.

This is what they advise:
1 Entry tickets for cars
2 Cycle tracks for every route through the city
3 Step by step elimination of car parks in the city
4 Creation of green spaces where there are now car parks
5 Car sharing advertised and promoted by the local authorities
6 Electric buses and cars
7 Reduction of Ici {local tax on property} by 30% for those who donít own a car
8 Set waiting time at traffic lights for vehicles to be double that for pedestrians
9 Loading and unloading from 5 to 7 in the morning
10 Free public transport
11 Tax for the occupation of the public space for parked vehicles
12 Newly constructed public offices definitely with no car parks

Our cities are automobile cemeteries and gas dumps. Letís change them.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 06:54 PM in Transport/Getting About | Comments (39)
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October 24, 2006

RESET

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photo by Kokeshi

We need to do RESET. To print T shirts saying RESET. To get a RESET tattoo. To telephone the fiancťe and say: ďToday Iím teaching you a new position: RESET.Ē Turn off your grandpaís TV and shout in his ear: ďRESEEETT!Ē.
Start from the beginning. Itís not possible to live with the sure knowledge of moving towards the catastrophe, even with optimism. The country is off the rails. The Partito Democratico that they want to create is already in existence. And is called dsmargheritaforzaitalia. Itís everywhere. Itís the straightjacket of the country.
The solution is not a new leader, a new party.
This democracy with a hole in the middle has failed. The Stato Unitario {unified State} after 150 years seems like a bit of old iron. A spouse that you live with and you no longer know why. Itís necessary to start with patience from the fundamentals. From the behaviour of individuals.
From enforcing the respect of our rights. Of water, of energy, of rubbish, of connectivity, of transport. Itís not known what use are the Authorities and the Guarantors. The politicians are worse than lumps of cement to block vehicles. To the public official who doesnít do his job, weíll shout ďRESET-RESET-RESETĒ.
To those who want us to digest the rubbish of the pardon, weíll shout: ďRESETĒ. Directly in their stupid festivals. In their email. To those who want to hand over the natural monopolies into the hands of the loan sharks, letís send them a ďRESETĒ.
This Parliament is not the mirror of the country, these industries are not the mirror of those who manage them. Enough of paying millions in golden handshakes to incapables while the precarious ones donít manage to get to the end of the month. Cimoli is still there?
The country is getting angry. I can feel it.
And the more the anger grows, thereís talk of a reformist spirit and the rights of the tax dodgers. Each one finds their own space to say ďRESETĒ, every day, each day, until they are finished off, to once more find our country that they are carrying away from us.
In this blog, the people who write from abroad or who want to emigrate are becoming ever more numerous. But are we joking? Let them go abroad, the top names of the auto-referenced democracy. The initiatives to do RESET I canít go and invent them on my own. Give me a hand. Write down yours, weíll vote on them and then weíll try them out.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:55 AM in Politics | Comments (34)
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October 23, 2006

Stock Exchange Games

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Imagine that youíve got some shares.
And that after 5 years these shares have halved in value.
And that these shares allow you to keep control of the biggest Italian company.
And that the company is called Telecom Italia.
And that no one draws your attention to the fact that you have to devaluate them.
And that if you devaluate them you lose control of Telecom.
And that to avoid devaluating them you have to fork out the difference, but you donít have the money.
And that the company with the shares halved is called Olimpia.
And that 80% of Olimpia belongs to Pirelli.
And that the other 20% is owned by Benetton that has however updated the value to that of the market.
And that the tronchetto dimezzato {Tronchetti who has been halved} has still got all his team in command at Telecom.
And if the value of Olimpiaís shares were brought up to date by more than 4 Euro on the Balance sheet by about a half, then Olimpia would no longer be anything.
And that all Tronchettiís men would no longer be in the top jobs.
And that Tavaroli is trying to involve Buora.
And that Buora answers in kind in the Gazzetta dello Sport that he is a CEO ltd. A CEO of limited responsibility.
And that he didnít know anything.
And that perhaps Sismi {Servizio per le Informazioni e la Sicurezza Militare = Italian secret service} replies to Buora with a communication about Mickey Mouse.
And that all the small Telecom shareholders want to have the value of the shares at more than 4 Euro.
And that they ask their banks to do this.
And that their banks give them written explanations why itís yes for Olimpia and no for them.
And that the shares must all be the same.
And that it is incredible the extent that they are playing around with us.

PS The Shareaction initiative is continuing. Soon I will give you an update.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:26 AM in Economics | Comments (3)
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October 22, 2006

A country on the verge of a nervous breakdown

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Iíve got a strange feeling. I can hear screeching noises. Micro fractures in the walls. I read about whistling at the Italian flag in Vicenza. With the audience full to bursting with representatives of the pretend opposition who smile without creasing a thing. For months Iíve been listening to embarrassing speeches from the Government. Embarrassing because of their inconsistency. For their ignorance.
And above all for their lack of courage. Itís useless to personalize, to speak badly of Prodi or of Berlusconi. Itís a whole political class, from the door keeper of the town administration to the President of the Lower House, who are hanging on to their privileges.
In a way, that is always more child-like. Trivial. For them we are simply sweeties, ice creams, pop corn. To change truly they have to be swept away. A popular clean sweep is needed. Direct democracy and new faces, not these female statues holding up the buildings that pass their time putting on make up.
Up until now, the Italians have been at the window. To see how things finished up. As though they were watching a pathetic film thatís of no relevance to them. Perhaps the last scene has finished. The dead get a pension. The savings of a life time, the TFR {Trattamento di Fine Rapporto = lump sum payment at the end of oneís time as an employee} is expropriated. But by now, even this has little importance in a country of precarious employees and unemployed. Of pretend industrialists who control the TV and the newspapers.
Who are taking out our guts from the inside, thanks to the mechanism of the concessions. The State lets them have concessions for the radio and TV frequencies, for water, for motorways, the telephone backbone, everything.
Our stuff, their money. And so much recognition, so many donations for the parties. So that, that way they stay at the feeding trough.
The political class wants to preserve their own privileges in a country that is losing everything. The Italians start to take notice.
To notice the smell of burning. And to understand that the difference is between us and them. Not between right and left. Thereís a sensation of unreality around.
If we listen to Casini or Bersani it seems like the time of Ceaucescu. Thereís a feeling in the air between venticinqueluglio {25 July 1943 Ė the fall of fascism} and ottosettembre (8 September 1945 - Italy's armistice with the Allies}. Itís air that doesnít promise anything good. Havenít you noticed it too?

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:54 AM in Politics | Comments (13)
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October 20, 2006

A future as a beggar

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TFR stands for Trattamento di Fine Rapporto {money given to employees at the end of their employment}. Itís money that we put on one side for our old age. Or if we loose our job. An investment for the future, for emergencies. A life jacket that gets heavier, more important each year that goes by.
One thing needs clearing up. This is our money. The employer keeps it in the bank for us. It doesnít belong to the State, nor to the company, nor to the banks. If they make us angry and we resign, the money goes straight into our current accounts. If we want to buy a house, we can ask for a part of it. If we get nightmares in the night about Italy going down into the depths (with us on top) then the TFR is a tiny bit of relief. A gentle breeze that allows us to get back to sleep again.
INPS {pension body} is by now an old slut that no one pays any longer. The money that we gave them, when it was more attractive than it is now, (itís always been a toilet but at least it was younger then) it doesnít have any more. However, pensions have still to be paid. If they werenít paid in Italy thereíd be a revolution. Far beyond Argentinaís.
Metaphorically many heads would roll into the baskets. The Governmentís idea to transfer with dexterity 50% of the TFR to INPS is a clear signal to the country: ďNo-one, if they pay taxes, is untouchable.Ē Accompanied by another one: ďINPS has gone bust.Ē And even by another one: ďWhat belongs to the citizens is the property of the State.Ē
Everyone knows that the companies use a tiny or big fraction of their employeesí TFR capital for their own financing. Letís not hide behind a finger: the banks finance Tronchetti and Benetton, but not the small and medium sized companies. And these are the ones to loose the TFR.
From the only part of the country that still produces something. But isnít it better to declare bankruptcy? It would be more honest.
A full stop and then start again. Instead of getting deeper into a daily bog created by Cimoli who resists (but why is he resisting?) by Tronchetti, by Benetton who wants to increase the road tolls. Because this and nothing else is the economy of Italy.

P.S. On 9 December the mythical book ĎBar Sportí by Benni will be 30 years old. Letís celebrate together! A group of readers have launched Luisona day. Organise the reading of a book in a bar, or somewhere else and make it known to Benniís website. Luisona day is the only festival that doesnít cost tax payers a lira! For details look at www.stefanobenni.it

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:11 AM in Economics | Comments (23)
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October 19, 2006

Publishing suicide

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Today I feel optimistic. I look at the sky of my Liguria and take a deep breath and I feel good. Iíve just read the decree about the Internet and information. Iím publishing it here.
Relax and read it.

ďUrgent arrangements concerning taxes and financeĒ
published in the Gazzetta Ufficiale {Official Government publication} n. 230 of 3 October 2006
Art. 32.
Reproduction of articles in magazines and newspapers
In article 65 of the law dated 22 April 1941, n. 633, after comma 1, the following is inserted:
ę1-bis. Those who reproduce, in any way, totally or partially, articles in magazines or newspapers, must pay a sum to the publishers of the works where these articles were taken from. The amount of this sum and the way it is paid are determined on the basis of agreements between the parties as laid down in the previous paragraph and the associations of the interested categories. Excluded from the obligation to pay are the public administrations described in article 1 of the decree dated 30 March 2001, n. 165Ľ.

Basically the law says that you have to pay to report online part of articles published in newspapers and magazines. Itís an incentive to no longer copy what is false, to not spread the lies of the economic groups and the parties.
Itís like the law that forbade smoking, in fact itís better, itís a law that puts the brakes on the spreading of lies. The lawmaker is certainly an Internet infiltrator. Thank you legislator!
The publishers wonít take this too well. When they see the number of citations and references to their sites dropping. When the traffic goes down. When the advertisers no longer telephone them. Then they can commit suicide in a truly definitive, virile, way. And they can allow access to their sites only on receipt of payment.

Letís make Creative Commons spread to all blogs. To all free websites, to allow for the distribution of published content. If the editorial groups want to cite us, they can in complete freedom. Whereas we, in our turn will cite them no longer.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:09 AM in Wailing Wall | Comments (39)
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October 18, 2006

Going beyond a simple No!

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Yes and No. Yes is positive. No is negative. Yes is the green light. No is the red one. Yes is the future. No is the past perfect. The media are always on the side of ďYesĒ. The politicians are always on the side of ďYesĒ. The filibustering financiers of the Colf-industria {combination of domestics and the employers association} are always on the side of ďYesĒ. Benettontronchettigeronzicimoliscaroni always say yes.
Enthused by the positive balance in their current account. Yes!
They are all on the side of progress. Of incinerators, of the privatization of water, motorways, communications, nuclear power stations, tunnels to keep us in Europe and the bridge to join up Sicily back to the Mother Country, of the Biagi Law, of externalizing, of rationalizing. They sprinkle optimism, joy and lots and lots, but never enough, of disapproval for those who say No.
No is provincial, infantile, associated with those who havenít yet understood, typical of those who have a garden and no place to park their car. Of the Nimby, the No-Global, of those who are extremists with respect to those who are in the middle. Of the Valsusini, the No-Tav, No-Tac, No-Car-Parks, No-Smog, No-Cars, No-Consuming, No-Pollution.
All trash who are financially useless. Damaging for business. Damaging for alliances. And alliances are always positive for those who are making money.
Salvador Alemany Mas, the CEO of Abertis has a name that reminds me of Chico: Cico Felipe Cayetano Lopez Martinez y Gonzales, and he knows lots about Zagor. After the political about-turn, Zapatero (active)-Prodi (passive), declared: ďThe problem is the tariff system, not the investments.Ē
Yes to the increase of the tolls, Yes to the shares that take flight in the Stock Exchange. There you go. This sentence is revealing. The investments are always the responsibility of the retrogrades that say No. And the road tolls flow into the coffers of the knights saying Yes. The ďNoĒ camp doesnít want to give in. The ďYesĒ camp always want to go ahead. This polarization needs to be inverted. A simple No is no longer enough. We need to go beyond that. And we need to learn to say: ďYes: fxxk off.Ē

PS: I want to remember Andrea Parodi of Tazenda, a friend who has left us.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:44 AM in Wailing Wall | Comments (21)
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October 17, 2006

The Italians' black hole

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Definition of priority: ďto come first in relation to something else, the right to get precedence for urgency, importance, values or similar.Ē {translated from} Garzanti Dictionary 2006

Italy is founded on priorities. Priorities are its very foundations. Without the priority of the Mezzogiorno (South of Italy), of work, of young people, of the Mafia, and just recently of Clandestines, and of released prisoners, this country would not last 2 days. Of course a country without foundations cannot last.
Thus in Italy there are some priorities that have had priority to wait for a century. They are reverse priorities. The one that shines above the others is the SRC Salerno-Reggio Calabria.
For some time, in the Italy of high speed and Great Traffic Jams, when a motorway needs repairing or a clogged ring road needs improving, up pops the priority to be given to the Salerno-Reggio Calabria.
Already Andreotti said it when he was deputy Pharaoh. Itís been repeated by Ministers who were Christian Democrats, Socialists, Olive Party and even Emmenthal Lunardi. Even he admitted ďThe Salerno-Reggio Calabria is a priority especially if someone is in a hurry to get to Milan.Ē
Then Emmenthal got his friends to construct dozens of tunnels, while the Salerno-Reggio Calabria was still a bombed out ribbon, full of ghostly construction and abandoned work and above all with dozens of kilometers with a single lane, so much so that because of the traffic jams, it has been renamed the SRC, Strada Rottura di Coglioni {Road that Breaks Your Balls}
The SRC is 443 Kilometres long but on average it takes 8 hours to drive along it. It was due to be ready by 2008, but at the current rate it could be opened in 2036 by the new Minister of Transport Lapuccio Elkann junior.
Now the SRC has been indicated as having priority over the Bridge of Messina, otherwise known as the megalomaniacal delirium fruit of the wig of Berlusconi, the day that DellíUtri made him a gift of a Golden Gate made from Lego.
The bridge over the Straits would be very very costly and the greatest Japanese engineer has said ďyes it could hold up, if you take the sea from underneath it.Ē
Thus we are happy to give priority to the Salerno-Reggio Calabria. But, this time, letís keep our eyes open.
We will check to see if there are building sites that are making no progress, if half of the motorway is one and a half lanes wide, if there are new ghostly contracts, abandoned big diggers, mountains of stones ten metres high and emergency parking places just for bicycles.
Basically if the Salerno-Reggio Calabria, amidst sections that are shut, redone or being redone seems to be a cocktail between Stalingrad and Simona Ventura, then the word ďpriorityĒ will have been used to mislead us.
We will check that the SRC, Strada Rottura Coglioni {Road that Breaks Your Balls} becomes SRC, Strada Regolarmente Completata (Road Regularly Completed} with safety measures that will be above the breaking of any balls. But at least then Italy will be saved.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:18 AM in Transport/Getting About | Comments (7)
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October 16, 2006

The new prohibition

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photo by Mr Wabu


Before the fact
CCTV, the Chinese TV channel, transmitted in direct, in China, football matches that had been legally bought. Synacast, a company with Chinese capital, put the signal on the Internet, apparently following an agreement with CCTV. The games of the Italian championship that were bought by CCTV, can thus be seen throughout the whole world on the Internet with P2P software for the exchange of information.

The fact, Sky and the Justice System
- Two Italian young people put links to the Chinese website on their own websites and are denounced by Sky
- Their websites are closed down by the Guardia di Finanza {Italian Finance Police} and the names of the young people are added to the register of those who are under investigation for violating the norms about authorsí rights for having allowed the viewing of Italian serie A and B championship games.
- the request is turned down by the judge and their PCs are returned to them.
- Sky doesnít give in and an investigating magistrate takes the case to the Corte di Cassazione {High Court}. The great corporation against 2 young people.
- This blog supplies financial help for a lawyer to one of the 2 young people, Luca De Maio.

The epilogue (for now)
The Corte di Cassazione orders a new trial against the 2 young people for having ďillegally spread and transmitted via the Internet using peer to peer software sports events to which Sky had exclusive rightsĒ

Final considerations
The Corte di Cassazione has introduced the crime of linking.
Whoever inserts a link to a TV programme, a film clip, any work covered by the rights of the authors, already sold online in another country, could be put on trial.
If I use Google to search for the Chinese website and then I use the site, have I perhaps committed a judicial linking? Why isnít Merdock not bringing an action against Google, and while heís at it, against the Internet. How many websites in the world have links to the Chinese site?
Tens of thousands? Denounce yourselves to the Corte di Cassazione by sending them an email. Meanwhile us bloggers could help the top judges with a free introductory course about the Internet.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 04:54 PM in Wailing Wall | Comments (18)
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October 15, 2006

The TV of the living Dead

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The person succeeding Ghino di Tacco cried out: ďBanditsĒ. It doesnít matter that he nearly burst out laughing while he was saying this. This man is right. The Gentiloni reform is an act of banditry, a mess worthy of Calderoli. But because of an excess of prudence and a lack of care and attention to detail.
In a couple of years thereíll be 2 channels on digital terrestrial. Digital terrestrial is already dead. In a couple of years it will be a crypt for housing Fede and RAI 2. And this is a good thing.
But the other 5 channels will remain alive subject to the economic interests of the Telecom group, of the Fininvest group and the shabby politicians who canít tell the difference between Darfur and Toblerone between Mandela and a lollipop (What cultural programmes? For this lot we need re-education camps for Maoís Red Guard).
Thus nothing changes. The News will be like it is now. A tool for mass disinformation.

Commercial channels must become public companies without owners to be referred to, alternatively close them down by decree tomorrow. And if someone shouts out: ďGaglioffiĒ, ďdirty CommunistsĒ or even ďfiddledifoĒ, never mind. We wonít get cross.
There must be a single channel for RAI. It must have no connections with the government or the parties. Letís be honest. Apart from Gabanelli and a few others, we just get shit in our faces from the TV. Absolutely all the advertising, all of it , needs to go to the commercial stations, without limits. Thatís the best way for them to commit suicide.
Anyway TV is in its death throes. In a bit it will be buried. Let Gentiloni call up Mark Thompson, director general of the BBC. Let him explain his ĎCreative Futureí to bring the BBC to the Internet. Let him cast an eye on Google Video and on Youtube that is today the biggest Internet broadcaster in the world.
Let him bring Broadband to every home. Let him abolish the license fee. Let him cur Broadband costs in half. Let him take them to the levels of France and Germany where there is true competition. Let him denounce the Authority, change it, destroy it and if he wants, why not sell it to the Telecom that heís always had such good relations with.

I hear mad people talking about TV, about media companies, about digital terrestrial as though they were on the Starship Enterprise in Star Trek.
When the future is in fact in the mass production of content, in fast connections and widespread coverage, in free access to knowledge, and in WiMax. RAI and Mediaset will end up like Alitalia. The Internet is Ďlow costí and for the moment itís without owners.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 03:05 PM in Technology/Internet | Comments (23)
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October 14, 2006

Safane and Procred

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The sacredness of the secular and the vulgarization of the sacred. Opposites are currently being integrated. A synthesis that is comic and at the same time absolutist. It redefines reality to cleanse itself of any sin. Let those who are without sin, throw the first stone against the redeemed sinners of the pardon. Sanctified. Cephalusified. Sin is holy.
Saint Moggi, Saint Wanna Marchi, holy parliamentary convicts. The sacredness of money stands above secularized religion and becomes a political object of consumption. Relativism triumphs and the Pope is content.
If everything is relative, good and evil are relative. Justice is relative. Crimes are relative. The more you pay, the more they are relative. Capital makes them less tangible, angelic.
Foreign tourists visiting Milan have no doubts. To withdraw money or to get a mortgage they go to the Duomo {Milan's Cathedral}. After going down on their knees and thus respecting local customs, they approach the priest or the sacristan.
In response to their request, they are given information about the nearest banking point for their banking sponsor. In the future there will be cash dispensers in the Duomo above the holy water fonts, and the financial consultant will be in the confessional and you'll be able to get a ticket for communion.
The same tourists going for a trip in the Bormida Valley in the beautiful Province of Savonna. Fortified by the experience in Milan, looking for new evidence of the presence of religion in the reality and of reality in religion.
They've understood that everything in Italy is relative. A melting pot between the Russian salad, granny's vegetable minestrone {soup} and the Lower House of Parliament. They stop in front of a little church in one of the most polluted places in the world: Cairo's cokeria.
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As well as the Madonna and the child Jesus, they find the image of a nuclear power station and polluting industries.
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They think it is an ex-voto of someone who has survived a disaster, then they realize that it is simply an advertisement and they calm down.
"Jesus went up to Jerusalem and in the Temple he found people selling cattle and sheep and doves, and the money changers sitting there. Making a whip out of cord, he drove them all out of the Temple, sheep and cattle as well, scattered the money changers' coins, knocked their tables over and said to the dove sellers, 'Take all this out of here and stop using my Father's house as a market.' St John's Gospel (2,13-25)

First PS: Once upon a time there were worker-priests; today there are global consultant priests.
Second PS: Thank you to the Savona meetup for the photos and for all your initiatives.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 01:33 AM in Wailing Wall | Comments (51)
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October 13, 2006

Employees on points

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Our employees live with the great protection of the Guarantors, of parliamentary immunity, of the Authorities and of their bodyguards.
They are a species protected by the media. A species that produces antibodies against the tribunals. Strangely, unlike other protected species, they are not in danger of extinction. In their survival instinct they search for social isolation. They flee from a comparison with reality.
They have become a reality show, a company that tours, a parliament of fumosi {famous? Smoky?} who show themselves off in Ďpaninií in the TV News broadcasts and when going from door to door. A species to be put under control, but who donít want to be controlled. A caste of closed lists that give themselves legitimacy. The antidote to these employees is information.
I have decided to have a go. To launch the initiative employees on points that will start from this blog in a few weeks.

Score Card for the employees on points.

Those who voted for the pardon: 3 points
Those who have been elected for more than 2 terms of office: 1 point for each extra term
Those who have been convicted: 2 points for each 6 months of their prison sentence
For those who are currently on trial: 1 point (just one for solidarity)
Those who have changed party since the election: 2 points
Those who have only even been a politician: 10 points
Those who have been a member of the P2: 4 points

The classification will be updated every so often with the (s)hit parade of the employees on points and the general ratings. Voting on the various rotten laws that Iím sure will be coming up from now to the end of this parliament, will be a contributing factor in the classification.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 12:21 AM in Politics | Comments (22)
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October 12, 2006

Pigs can fly

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"Alitalia is going through its most difficult time in all its history. The situation is completely out of control and I don't see a parachute."
Romano Prodi, currently President of the Council, 10/10/2006

"The competition rules that have favoured the growth of low cost airlines are a contributing factor in the destruction of the capital assets of Alitalia. While Air France and Lufthansa have between 75% and 80% of their domestic markets, because of competition rules, Alitalia has barely 50% even though the State is the major shareholder."
Roberto Maroni (former minister), 25/10/2005

" Ö..this is the real problem: that the State is the shareholder, the same State that pays mind-blowing sums to the Alitalia directors and that has put the dampers on development and partnerships in recent years. I'm publishing a European classification by Ryanair, even for Maroni, of the revenues and costs per place (pax) and the net margin relating to 2005 for the airlines. Alitalia is showing a loss, the other airlines (low cost or not) are showing a profit."
Beppe Grillo, commedian, 26/10/2005

Alitalia is a flagship company and we are happy with the connection with the flag. We are all 'brothers of Alitalia'. But also financers and benefactors. Or rather parents, adoptive parents. Every Italian family has in fact adopted at a distance for years an Alitalia employee. With their taxes, they pay the employee's salary.
For Cimoli's salary of 190,375 euro a month, we need a middling-sized community.
Alitalia has lost 221,500,000 euro in the first six months of 2006.
Alitalia's balance sheets have been in the red for many years. Its management has been a disaster for many years. It has been going through its most difficult time for many years. Its flights have been late for many years. It has always been making mince meat of the Italians on the Milan-Rome route with round-the world tariffs. It has always been using directors that are "recommended".

If Prodi has a tiny bit of decency, he must give Cimoli the sack (and ask him for damages). He must sack the Board of Directors and the top management. Tomorrow.
Or he should have the decency to keep quiet and fly low cost.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:31 AM in Economics | Comments (36)
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October 11, 2006

My drug is called Tamara

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Iíve received this dramatic letter that Iím publishing here.

ďDear Signor Grillo,

Iím writing to you because I know that you are concerned about the problems of 2-legged and 4-legged animals. Iím called Tamara and Iím a buffalo of Campania. For some time now Iíve noticed a strange taste in the feed, and strange digestive reactions in my colleagues.
For example, my friend Sofronia, after each meal, produces 13 litres of milk singing 'Ricominciamo' by Pappalardo.
The buffalo Camilla uses alfalfa to roll herself a joint thatís a metre and a half long. The buffalo Armida has had a tattoo of a marijuana leaf done on one thigh and on the other a portrait of Gasparri
Finally buffalo Mary, in an abstinence crisis, ate a plastic container and instead of milk has sprayed out more than 600 mozzarellas already packaged with the appropriate ďuse byĒ date.
TotÚ oípushero, our herdsman, says itís not true. That they were only tiny doses of hashish in the hay. But I can assure you that theyíve been drugging us for years. Some of us at night go off to look for jimson weed and hallucinatory mushrooms in the meadows. Others watch Bonolis. Our life has been devastated.
But apart from the damage thereís the insult. Iíve read in the newspapers that one in three Italian politicians takes drugs. Well straight away, the members of the Lower and Upper Houses said that it was all our fault. Since it is well known that this is a Parliament of gourmands, after a sitting, everyone rushed off to stuff themselves on mozzarella of buffalo in the restaurants of Rome, and without knowing it they became drugged by the mozzarellas.
Well no. Itís enough just to look at them. Observe the crossed eyes of Calderoli, the trembling of the moustache of DíAlema, the drooping eye of Bondi, the twitching lip of Gasparri, the jitters of Cicchitto, the hyper-excitability of Rutelli, the far-away look of Fini, the double-visions of Prodi, the no-longer-human-look of Silvio.
Here the mozzarella has nothing to do with it. Here we are not talking about ďmoderate quantitiesĒ. We donít know what monstrous types of drugs are in circulation in the Italian Parliament but itís got nothing to do with us. And if they tell you that itís not true. Itís a buffalo.Ē

Text by Stefano Benni, il lupo.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 04:50 PM in Wailing Wall | Comments (22)
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October 10, 2006

Anna Politkovskaya

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A true journalist is dead. She was called Anna Politkovskaya. At the entrance to her house they shot her in the heart and then in the head. She lived in a building on the edge of Moscow. She leaves two children. She leaves an investigation into torture by Russians in Chechnya that can no longer be published by her newspaper the Novaja Gazeta.
She left all her documents, archives, photos, and PC to the Russian Police who impounded everything they found in her modest apartment as soon as she died. They can read it all calmly during the investigations.
She leaves Putin, a former member of the KGB at the head of Russia. She leaves Kadyrov, Putin's man, accused by her of crimes against the Chechen population. She leaves the silence of the Kremlin, perhaps in profound mourning.
She leaves Chirac who decorated Putin with the Great Cross of the Legion of Honour. She leaves a book: "Putin's Russland" that I advise you to read. In the book, Anna says this about Putin: "Russia has already had people of this type who govern. And it finished in tragedy. In a blood bath. In civil war. I don't want it to happen again."
Anna remembers the death of Matteotti. Kidnapped and killed after his accusational speech against fascism in Parliament. The last one before the Regime and Mussolini's official speech in 1925 to the Lower Chamber when the dictatorship was installed. "If fascism was none other than castor oil and truncheons rather than a superb passion of the best Italian youth, then it's my fault!
If fascism has been an association for delinquent acts, I am the head of an association for delinquent acts!" But at least il duce did not impound the private papers of Matteotti.
What will happen in Russia now? But this is not a question that Western democracies can ask. It's beyond discussion that Russia is a democracy based on gas and oil that is exported. If they didn't export that, they would go back to being the good old dictatorship of once upon a time.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 12:58 AM in Information | Comments (20)
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October 09, 2006

GilbertÚn is worse than the hole

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Through the Schemaventotto company, the Benettons want to bring a court action against the government and the Fintecna company. In 1999 they took part of the Italian motorway concession from Fintecna.
The Board of Directors has carefully evaluated the decree 262 that redefines the relationship between the State and those who manage. And it has decided that it is not happy. Gilberto Benetton is really not happy with two items in the decree.
The first is that the increase in the motorway tolls is only possible if the work that was agreed to be done is in fact carried out. The second is that motorists have the right to be reimbursed for the extra profits that result from the investment work not having been carried out.

This seems normal to me. Itís a minimum level of protection for the users. But itís not OK for GilbertÚn helped by the feisty Emma Bonino, the saintly European Union protectrix of the interests of companies (I donít understand her, Pannella wants to disconnect Welbyís tube and she wants to attach it to Benetton).
I think I have understood that the Autostrade {motorways} company has failed to carry out work to a value of 2,000,000,000 Euro. Where is this money? Why hasnít it been given back or made available?
Thatís not money belonging to GilbertÚn. I also think Iíve understood that using our motorway toll money, GilbertÚn has financed the election campaign for the parties. By taking the motorways he has given money to Forza Italia and the DS and I didnít know.

The concessionaires are managers, but the motorways belong to us. GilbertÚn is managing our stuff. Heís a modern sharecropper who doesnít look after the fields and then takes action against us. The management has passed from the State to a private company and the situation has got worse. Travelling on the motorway costs more than a low cost flight to London or Paris. GilbertÚn is worse than the hole.
If GilbertÚn takes an action against the State, then we, who are citizens and users of our motorways, can take a court action against him for not having fulfilled his obligations. Italians are not just navigators and saints they are above all motorists.
And while driving theyíve seen and are still seeing a lot of everything. I want to collect your witness statements in a dossier so that we can bring an action against this sharecropper. A road class action.


P.S. In the Venice language (Benetton is from the Venice region) there is a saying "Xe pezo el tacon del buso" that means "The patch is worse than the hole".

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:44 AM in Economics | Comments (63)
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October 08, 2006

Do It Yourself Energy

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photo from solivagant7

People at the moment are talking about the finance law. Of money to be taken from this or the other social group. To comment on the Budget law I need to give a full time job to a qualified accountant and publish tables, numbers percentages, and statistical and historical comparisons over a period of weeks.
Who remembers the Budget law of 1998 or the 1989 one? What did they mean for all of us? The finance law changes nothing in the country.
Someone will get the worst of it more than others. They will develop antibodies and will try to dodge taxes. That's it. The finance law is about finances and the country has seen too much about finance. Now we need the facts. The politicians will do nothing. They are old in spirit and in the use of language. Banker's language. It's up to us to do the Budget law or rather the Entrepreneurial law. A do it yourself Entrepeurial law.
Let's take as an example the village of Berlingo. Let's clone it for all the other villages.

"Having noticed your interest in environmental and energy matters, I'd like to tell you about an intervention happening in the village of Berlingo (BS) where the authorities have recently approved a project to be constructed by next year: it is a combined photovoltaic-geothermic plant that will provide electrical energy and heating to the new educational complex (nursery and elementary school) currently under construction and to the sports centre that is already built.
For a village like ours (2200 inhabitants), this is a massive project and can go ahead thanks to the contribution of an energy account from the GRTN {Gestore della Rete di Trasmissione Nazionale = National Transmission Network}.It produces zero emissions into the atmosphere and it makes these public buildings self sufficient in energy. It gives a drastic reduction, if it doesn't take them quite to zero, in future costs for managing electrical energy and heating.
It's worth pointing out that the education complex and the sports centre are on land in the centre of the village which up until the year 2000 was used for an unauthorized tip for dangerous refuse (lead and residue from batteries). It has now been completely cleaned up by totally removing the polluting material with the contribution of the Lombardy Region. Thus a site that was highly dangerous has become by a sort of reversal worthy of a story from Dante, a place that is highly significant for the safeguarding of the environment.
In 2005 our village started the operation of a solar energy heating unit for heating water in the sports centre and in 2006 a photovoltaic unit for the local authority.
It has started up a partnership with a social cooperative that is specialised in the sector of renewable energy and we have proposed to our residents last February to have a meeting about "energy accounts" promoting the installation of solar panels on private homes.
We want our initiative to be a stimulus showing how going beyond proclamations that are ends in themselves, even small realities like ours can create programmes of intervention that are significant and compatible with ecology. Thank you for your attention. Cordial greetings."
Dario Ciapetti - mayor of Berlingo

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:36 PM in Energy | Comments (15)
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Free Information Day

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Today is a great day for news. In fact the journalists are on strike. The megaphones of the economic groups and of the parties repose for a day. You will have noticed, there's a sense of peace around. It's like there's been a sudden interruption to the annoying background noise.

Counterinformation is silent. A day like this, merits institutionalization. The sixth of October must become the day of free information. To be celebrated each year.
The journalists know and we know that the journalists are not free. They get their salary from the editors. The editors obey the shareholders and those who advertise. There can be overlap between these two categories. The journalists have got to think of the upkeep of their families, their editors and their advertisers. This is why their work must be interpreted.

Today we'll look at Paola Pica, a journalist with the Economics page of il Corriere della Sera. He's done an analysis of the reorganization of the Telecom group.
Title: Il Riassetto. La Pirelli stacca il maxi assegno. E sale all'80% di Olimpia. {The Reorganization. Pirelli writes a massive cheque. And gets to 80% of Olimpia.}
Date: Wednesday 4 October
Newspaper: il Corriere della Sera

"Marco Tronchetti Provera is leaving Olimpia and the top levels leading to Telecom with the aim of giving the group a suitable balance."
can be read as:
"Marco Tronchetti Provera having left Telecom as president risks leaving it as a shareholder as well and he has to give a suitable balance to his set of Chinese boxes. The Chinese boxes, not the Telecom group."

"The first step, definitely the most weighty, was taken today by the Pirelli president when he fulfilled an agreement and wrote a cheque for 1,170,000,000 to settle with the two banks, Intesa and Unicredit, that had been Olimpia shareholders until now."
can be read as:
"Intesa and Unicredit have let Tronchetti go and they have insisted on sticking to the agreements with payment for Telecom shares at 2001 values, which are more or less double the current ones."

"The exit of the banks will have an impact on the debt position of Pirelli of 1,040,000,000 Ö to make up for this increase in the debt the Bicocca has already set in motion some extraordinary operations including the release of 39% of Pirelli Tyre for 740,000,000 and the withdrawal from participation in other companies, including CapitaliaÖ"
can be read as:
"Now that there's no possibility of selling Tim that would have made it possible to sort out the debts, Pirelli is obliged to sell, sell, sell. Just as Telecom has done recently. The strategy of the junk merchant."

Pirelli shares are safe thanks to the maxi-cheque and the ownership of 80% of Olimpia's debts. If misleading advertising is a crime, then misleading news is much more of a crime. It should be penalized. And the damages should be paid by the companies that are the shareholders of the newspapers, the true actors in the crime.

PS: The shareaction initiative is continuing. Click here and delegate.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 03:32 AM in Information | Comments (5)
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October 06, 2006

The therapeutic employee

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What will we do without our employees? Let's be honest, we'd feel more alone. Life would be better, it's true. But we'd have a sense of emptiness inside. The nostalgia for nothing.
Without employees of the cultural dimensions of Buttiglione our existence would no longer be the same. When we listen to him we feel better. We know that if he has made it, then all of us, yes every one of us, has a chance, a future.
He is a therapeutic employee, that performs miracles, lifts up the depressed, reanimates those considering suicide, he restores hope to those who had lost it for ever. A blogger interviewed him on the topic of the convicts in Parliament and he replied with philosophy.

"Dear Beppe,
Two weeks ago I was invited to Vasto, for the Italia dei Valori meeting to follow the event. Di Pietro wanted to give press accreditation to myself and other bloggers, so I had the chance to approach some of our
employees.
I am using my blog to start off the initiative "Giornalismo Diretto":{Direct Journalism}: I have asked my readers to suggest questions to put to the guests taking part and that's what I did with a telecamera in my hand.
I'd like to tell you about 2 videos that are particularly amusing, relating to a UDC employee, Rocco Buttiglione, and the other to the environment employee Pecoraro Scanio.
To the first I asked how we can trust a parliament which contains 25 convicts. He replied: "They were elected by the Italians and they have to put up with them."
Apart from the fact that I felt, as an Italian, to have been treated like an imbecile and starting from the illuminating, philosophical and intellectually honest invitation even to him I tried to explain that in reality we only managed to delegate a party to choose our representativesÖand even he pretended not to know..
The question I asked of the other one was about Scaroni that you have also asked on your blog: when will we send him home? Pecoraro Scanio replied that it's the government that has to decide that, but that if he had the choice he would sack the lot and so onÖ I tried to explain that being a Minister also means being part of the government, but I didn't manage to end the sentence. Others were similarly "exhilarating", like Formigoni who didn't want to believe what I was saying about the convicts. Perhaps we should watch him on a rainy day, he may cheer us up."
Marco Canestrari.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:34 AM in Information | Comments (18)
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October 05, 2006

The power of power

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Fininvest has lost the action in the courts against me for defamation for the publication of my article in the January 2004 edition of 'Internazionale' in which they were accused of having slush funds and false accounting in the balance sheet. I have to say that I am not happy. Iím not happy because the Italian justice system has lost time for no reason, Iíve lost time and my lawyer has lost time.
Actions for defamation by big companies against individuals are at best intimidation. They clog up our tribunals. They silence the inconvenient voices. I have a couple of proposals: letís give an amnesty for all the defamation cases currently going through the courts. And letís depenalise the crime of defamation. A justice of the peace and a fine can be enough with the public apology of the person committing defamation.

Fininvest however is not giving in (too many lawyers) and has started an action against a director of the Banca díItalia for moral damages. One of his friends has sent me this letter.
ďI want to turn to you for an appeal for solidarity relating to a person, who has always been a close friend, Francesco Giuffrida.
For those who donít remember, I will say that Francesco Giuffrida is the courageous director of the Banca d'Italia (deputy director at Palermo) who as requested by the Procura della Repubblica di Palermo carried out an accurate and scrupulous technical examination of the flows of capital directed towards Fininvest, for Marcello Dell'Utriís trial
For this activity, Francesco has to appear on 12 October, having been accused by Fininvest of causing them presumed moral damages. The action was taken just before DellíUtriís appeal was heard. This is in correspondence with another job that Francesco did for the Procura di Roma, that obviously considers him to be a person sufficiently trustworthy to investigate the movement of capital connected to the Roberto Calvi case.
ďIt seems to be a way to make him stay silent and to frighten him during the trial.Ē Is the statement made in June by a magistrate to Cavallaro, a journalist with il Corriere. Not only that: the action brings the definite risk that all the work he has done as a technical witness, and all the examinations that he has been asked to do, could be delegitimised.
Francesco Giuffrida will have to go and defend himself in front of a man who has been condemned for mafia activity, simply because he has done his job and done it well. And he has to go alone since even the Banca d'Italia, obviously aware of his collaboration with the Tribunal, has not taken any action to support him or to protect him at the trial.
Why am I making this appeal? To break the silence and the isolation that is surrounding him. In June, Felice Cavallaro wrote an article in il Corriere, and there was another in la Repubblica. After that there has been no further information. I want to work against the danger of this isolation, almost like ďomertŗĒ (the silence surrounding mafia activity} for Francesco and his family.
This is why I am asking those who read this not to leave Francesco isolated and to highlight his integrity of action, his personal characteristics and his courage that should be recognised and held up for all to follow as an example.Ē
Giuseppe G.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 11:23 AM in Information | Comments (29)
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October 04, 2006

Little Robert and the Finance Law

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Little Robert is 3 years old. He lives in Sardinia and suffers from a rare genetic illness, Metachromatic Leukodystrophy, that will lead to a progressive and unstoppable deterioration of the neurological and mental functions.
800.000 euro is needed to save him. The group www.proroberto.it has been formed to collect the money and save his life. About 500.000 euro has been collected. 300.000 Euro is still needed. Letís help him. Letís not let him die.

Lots of people ask me to comment on the Finance Law. What should I say? A finance law that lets children die but thinks about the middle class, and the upper middle class, about progressive taxation, about 4 x 4s, about tightening up on company cars about weighty extras. I donít care a fig for this finance law and even less do I care about the protest roundabouts.
What priorities do Italians have? How many children have rare illnesses? Where are the male and female ministers in these cases? The opposition and the government?
Which counts for more, the Messina bridge and the salary increase for parliamentarians or the life of our children?
I wonder why an Italian family has to be reduced to ask, to implore, to beg for charity from people to save their own child while the government spends thousands of million of Euro to patrol Lebanon and to converse with Hezbollah.
A State that doesnít save its children from death because of illness is not a civil State. Itís a bank, a consortium of interests, an extraneous thing, almost repugnant.

How many children are there in Italy like little Robert? I ask families to describe their happenings in this post. Are there 1,000, 10,000, or 1,000,000 children? They all must be saved. Let Rosy Bindi, Prodi and Schioppa find the money fast. Let them do an additional finance law. Let them get moving.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 02:35 AM in Health/Medicine | Comments (23)
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October 03, 2006

Pornography of death

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Thinking of death makes you nostalgic. What great times when you went to the other world minding your own business. The only certain thing about the only certain thing in life was that it would happen Ďat its own timeí.
But everything has evolved. Not only have we got mobile phones with the TV and the backside of your nephew on them, not only have we got the 4 wheel drive and the utility Mercedes but we can add reanimations. They are born and we can no longer die in peace.
They make you breathe, stabilise your vital functions and they keep you alive when you would have been dead: a fourth dimension of staying in this world. At times this makes the doctors big-headed. When these things are discussed, God jumps out.
Heís involved to make conversation. Precision is reassuring. Intelligent bombs. Fridges that allow you to shop via the internet. Cars that watch out for you while you are turning round. Toilet seats that warm up and greet you. What has God got to do with all this? This new man who gets emotional about his toaster gets imprisoned in nothingness, in a technological limbo, when he should be meeting his Maker!
And here are the Italians considering the ethical problem of death: a desperate person is in a desperate situation. He asks Napolitano to be allowed to die. It would be enough if someone would stand on the tube: and in his own home. But he writes to the President. Who replies basically that itís up to him.
That man is in an extreme situation but he wants to think of the others. How does the country answer?
It replies with the fetishism of death. The tragedy creates a video, a soft videoÖ little more than a soap bubble. We too enter the Intensive Care Unit.
We get familiar with the respirators, the infusion pumps, the aortic counterpulsators, the tubes, the aspirators and the special mattresses costing twenty thousand euros.
Itís great to see the monitors with the coloured traces that go with the TV cameras into the operating theatre. Weíll not be selling our own bodies to the universities, weíll sell them to a reality show so that when we die, theyíll do a live autopsy.
After a crash course about reanimation techniques and all sorts of declarations, finally, the country decides nothing.
We are not the ones who have to turn off the machines for the dying person. Once the voyeurism has terminated we can start an ethical discussion respecting death. A private fact. I donít want to die thinking of the cost/benefit analysis. Letís turn everything off before the birth of the fitness of the corpse. Pannella has offered to turn off the machines if Piergiorgio Welby should ask.
But his relatives can already do it at any time. Iím going beyond that. Iím offering to Piergiorgio, straight away, to throw out of his house the TV, the journalists and all the pornographers of death.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 10:21 AM in Health/Medicine | Comments (13)
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October 02, 2006

The big democratic list

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No one has elected the people who are sitting in Parliament. They are usurpers. The electoral law brought in by the Centre Right to win elections has prevented Italian citizens from choosing their own candidates.

Thus no member of the Lower or Upper House can say they have been elected by the people. They can however state that they were chosen by a party. They are employees of their party and not of the Italians. And until the time they switch allegiance they speak and act appropriately in the name of their party. In fact an illegitimate parliamentarian can choose to practice illegitimacy even in other parties. It depends who will pay them more. The professions of these illegitimates are more or less always the same, at times they can be interchanged and even summed: lawyers, former trades unionists, journalists, convicts.
The latter, though it isn't actually a profession but an add-on, is anyway a great help in being selected by the party secretaries.
The Centre Left said that it wanted to change the electoral law straight away. But it has done nothing because that's convenient. However the parties have brought in the 'parliamentary class action' that they look after.
At the level of the people this is not yet (and never will be) allowed, but at a parliamentary level it is. Right and Left. It makes no difference.

Faced with a 'parliamentary class action' everyone is equal because it can be used to protect their backsides from the citizens and the magistrates. The pardon and the intercept laws have found a consensus from the parties that Ms Merkel and her Grosse Koalition wouldn't even dream about. Backside-protecting-laws.
The primacy of politics has been transformed into the primacy of the parties. A papier m‚chŤ democracy that spends its time making laws that protect itself, puts me vaguely in mind of a dictatorship.
A sweet dictatorship in which the citizens can get angry, can protest. Perhaps even come out onto the streets for a great coach ride with the trades unions or paid for by the parties. Nothing more. We've got a carnival democracy.

The electoral law prevents us from using our legitimate rights. If the Government doesn't change, the Government itself is illegitimate.

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 01:02 PM in Politics | Comments (22)
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October 01, 2006

Justice triumphs

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How long have we been working in this blog for the return of the rule of law without ever getting a result? This is why we can and must celebrate it today.Today that justice, the real one, the one that doesn't hesitate when bumping into anyone, not even a 10 year old child, the constant justice of the pardon, has found its day of glory.
An array of police and plain clothes agents surrounded the dangerous Convent of Sant Oyen in Valle D'Aosta.They picked up a little Bielorussian girl called Maria.They took her to the airport and they sent her back to her country urgently.
Maria had threatened suicide, but Bielorussia was waiting for her. She will be housed in her old welcoming orphanage in Vilejka where, according to the couple from Genoa that want to adopt her, she has been subject to incredible violence. I am sure that our Minister of Justice will send inspectors to do the appropriate checks.
The couple that have looked after her, have applied to the Appeal Court in Genoa to keep Maria in Italy.But they didn't even wait for their decision before putting her on the plane. The number of non-Europeans has now been reduced by one.
Perhaps one day she'll come back to our country.Who knows, we'll find her along one of the roads of a city, imported by the mafia of the East. May God go with you Maria.

P.S. A Boy from Sardinia is asking for our help. He's called Roberto and he's suffering from metachromatic leukodystrophy . His website is www.proroberto.it

Postated by Beppe Grillo at 09:56 PM in Wailing Wall | Comments (15)
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