The power of power


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.

Posted by Beppe Grillo at 11:23 AM in | Comments (29)
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Enrichetto, why do you get so pissed off. It was all true.

Posted by: Raffaella Birotella | October 7, 2006 11:10 PM

Ah and, by the way, I'm an asshole.

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 7, 2006 11:09 PM

Raffaella, it had to be said, but the dimwit is already back with more stupidity. Beppe is either unwilling or incapable to put an end to this pathetic infantilism.

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 7, 2006 11:03 PM

Thank you, Enrico for support!

Posted by: Raffaella Biferale | October 7, 2006 07:49 PM

Yes, I am very mean.
Almost a real man!

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 7, 2006 02:26 AM

Enrico Rotti

Oh, you so scare me...

ohhhh ohhhhh ohhhh

Read Raffaella's posts and the real mockery is what she is doing herself. Because she actually means her silliness. Just like you.

Ohhhh, Rotti, you scared me so much.

Posted by: Raffaella Birotella | October 7, 2006 02:10 AM

Enrico Rotti

Oh, you so scare me...

ohhhh ohhhhh ohhhh

Read Raffaella's posts and the real mockery is what she is doing herself. Because she actually means her silliness. Just like you.

Ohhhh, Rotti, you scared me so much.

Posted by: Raffaella Birotella | October 7, 2006 02:10 AM

Birotella, try to squeeze hard those five or six synapses left in your shriveled brain and understand that UNLIKE YOU Raffaella is posting with her real name plus a link to her web site. Your anonymous and ignorant mockery of her is both vile and unacceptable.

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 7, 2006 01:24 AM

...I spent many time in Germany because of LOVE.

Posted by: Raffaella Biferale | October 6, 2006 08:12 PM


Posted by: Raffaella Birotella | October 6, 2006 11:44 PM

I like to watch the boat sinking.

Posted by: Federico Sala | October 6, 2006 09:45 PM

Enrico: I spent many time in Germany because of LOVE. Obviously, life in Germany is very easy, corruption was practically unknown, everybody was respectful to the environment and to other people. No "furbetti".
But I can't say honestly I was abroad because of this.
I can understand if somebody seeks his fortune abroad, but it's only a rightful but individual choice, not a way to do something for the own country.

Posted by: Raffaella Biferale | October 6, 2006 08:12 PM

Raffaella, I accept that if you plan to spend the rest of your days in Italy, striving for change is the only recourse and hope. Like Joselle said "spes ultima dea". As you know I made up my mind long time ago that there was no hope and never waited for Italy to redeem herself. After many years I am still waiting from a very safe distance and things only got worse....Why should I bother even thinking about these issues? Because all of my family and many friends are still living in Italy and I care a lot about them.

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 6, 2006 07:30 PM

Joselle, I know that it's very difficult, but it's the only way.
Mentality revolutions need a lot of time, we can't see the results at once, but if we don't start, we'll see never any results.
Think of our mothers: they were living in a world without women's self-determination, without the rights of divorce, abortion, contraception. In the meanwhile there was the women's lib movement, and civil rights movements. The social conscience had changed, the law had changed and today we can feel more free, but it needed about 30 years.

Posted by: Raffaella Biferale | October 6, 2006 05:40 PM

Dear Stefano Sala,
May be I'm Alice in Wonderland, and I'm proud to be it.
I only think that, instead to complain, we must try to change something, or not?
What are you doing here, on this blog? If you think there is no chances to improve ourselves and our conditions, it doesn't matter if we are italians, americans, germans or british, why are you here? Only to complain?
Let me say that I find it boring.
That's all.

Posted by: Raffaella Biferale | October 6, 2006 05:19 PM

Hope is the last to die, meantime, while hoping, you have to be practical. Education, the type Raffaella suggests is commendable but difficult to implement because there are many diehards who will not change.

My Italian students are always disenchanted, they always complain about many things - about the "mangia mangia" as they call it; the lack of discipline in many areas; nepotism; corruption; inadequate health services; corrupt politicians; fraud and the inadequacy of justice.

When we talk about other countries [I have lived practically a bit everywhere in Europe but longer in France and the UK, naturally], they tend to long to go away somewhere, hoping the world is a better place elsewhere. That young men and women at the age of 20+ are already feeling bitter about their country is a sure sign that there is really some putrid gangrene that needs to be cured, amputated actually.

Above all, it takes courages, honest individuals who are not afraid to come forward and kick the shit out of those who are simply mucking the place.

Posted by: Joselle Camilleri | October 6, 2006 05:16 PM

Raffaella Biferale = Alice in Wonderland

Posted by: Stefano Sala | October 6, 2006 03:45 PM

Raffaella you are a very kind and forgiving person, but for your solution to be possible you would need brain transplants. Italians that emigrate shed very quickly the old habits because their new Countries won't allow the corruption so familiar to them (Cosa Nostra excepted).
Aidan, you are quoting Robert Green Ingersoll! He's not in fashion right now, but he's a Titan himself and well worth reading. By the way, do you know that "fagot" was the name of the sticks impregnated with fuel used by the executioners to start the fire that would burn these homosexuals?

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 6, 2006 02:34 PM

'The trouble with most people is, they bow to what is called authority; they have a certain reverence for the old because it is old. They think a man is better for being dead, especially if he has been dead a long time. They think the fathers of their nation were the greatest and best of all mankind. All these things they implicitly believe because it is popular and patriotic, and because they were told so when they were very small, and remember distinctly their teachers reading it out of a book.

Who at the present day can imagine the courage, the devotion to principle, the intellectual and moral grandeur it once required to be an infidel, to brave the church, her racks, her burning fagots, her dungeons, her tongues of fire. They were the noblest sons of earth. They were the real saviors of our race, the destroyers of superstition and the creators of Science. They were the real Titans who bared their grand foreheads to all the thunderbolts of all the gods.'

Robert Green Ingersoll, 1873

Posted by: Aidan Smyth | October 6, 2006 02:13 PM

Enrico, I'm not optimistic, and I didn't say that this country is really modifiable in its basical unwritten laws, but I said that even if paradoxically all italians would emigrate, they would bring with themselves the same crooked patterns they are used to carry out in Italy.
The change I was meaning is a deep mentality change and each of us can start to do it, for example we could stop accepting any recommendations, we can request the receipt for every little purchase, and so on...

Posted by: Raffaella Biferale | October 6, 2006 01:16 PM

"Italy is made of Italians, we must begin to change ourselves, everyone by himself, starting with our day-to-day life and our mentality"
Your optimism is commendable, but reality suggests otherwise. Just after my graduation in Italy, I started working for an Engineering Company and I soon noticed that everybody was mentioning that a colleague, a certain geometra C...o, would facilitate a bureaucratic hurdle, make possible a solution etc.
Problem was that he was nowhere to be found in the office. When I asked where is office was I was told that he was working full time greasing the bureaucratic wheels in City Hall! Changing a Country that accepts this kind of bribery is like doing a U turn on the Titanic in ten seconds.

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 6, 2006 12:51 PM

I said that today, if an italian citizen decide to leave his country, he's doing it because of individual reasons, may be better professional chances, studiyng or love. I don't think our emigrations could be a form of fight against corrupution, for this we must remain in Italy and engage ourselves in changing our country.
May be, as Prince said, emigration will be sooner or later a political choice, I myself thought to leave Italy in case of Berlusconi 's victory. Let's hope for the best! ;-)
Anyway, I'm afraid that corruption is everywhere in the world to find, but the difference between Italy and the rest of industrialized countries is the widespread distribution of corruption's behaviors in the population. For this reason I don't agree with Enrico, when he says : "Italy is not for the Italians, but for the diehard masochists". Italy is made of italians, we must begin to change ourselves, everyone by himself, starting with our day-to-day life and our mentality.

Posted by: Raffaella Biferale | October 6, 2006 11:23 AM

Most of the time people leave because of a political or politics-related situations. Take your forefathers, those emigrants who left Italy because they could not find decent employment. Now, politically speaking, if things were different then, maybe they would have remained.

True, it might be a personal choice leaving your country. I did because my husband is Italian. However, the decision taken now to go back to a "better" country [and I mean a country with lesser evils, mind you] is mitigated by disillusionment in most social, economic and political spheres.

I am sure I am going to miss a lot of good things in Italy but, as you know already, the good things do not happen to be social, economic or political!!!

Posted by: Joselle Camilleri | October 6, 2006 10:08 AM

Edward Gibbon, the Prince of Historians, is one of my heroes, but in this case he should've added that corruption is also to be found in all political systems. Italy, though, has the doubtful honor to have institutionalized corruption. In Italy there are no checks and balances, the Judiciary is paralyzed and often politicized and the Mafia seems to be in control. Finding a solution to this problem is akin to try to make pigs fly. So Italy is not for the Italians, but for the diehard masochists.

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 6, 2006 04:06 AM

Too difficult to express it in my own words so I prefer quotations:

"Every culture has its distinctive and normal system of government. Yours is democracy, moderated by corruption. Ours is totalitarianism, moderated by assassination."

Don't fool yourselves...where ever you go corruption will be present in one form or another

"Corruption, the most infallible symptom of constitutional liberty.Ē
Edward Gibbon

Posted by: paola filinesi | October 6, 2006 01:59 AM

I think there are three options.

Accept the situation.
Try to change it.

The first is not good. And the situation will likely get even worse.
The second is unlikely to produce any result.
The third is practicable.

Posted by: Alex Fini | October 6, 2006 01:33 AM

Today is an individual choice, tomorrow it could become a political one.

Posted by: Giovanni Principe | October 6, 2006 12:50 AM

Enrico: I agree with you about the endemic corruption, but to leave Italy today is an individual choice, not a political solution.;-))))))))))

Posted by: Raffaella Biferale | October 5, 2006 03:48 PM

Italians have only one choice to solve their endemic corruption problems: emigration. You can't remove systematic corruption that took centuries of refinements to get where it is today.

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | October 5, 2006 03:20 PM

My life experience has tought to me that are the more transparent and good willing people, totally dedicated to do the right things in the right way, that at the end are punished, because the sistem gives to the "fox people" the chanche to avoid their responsibility.
Renato Ronco

Posted by: renato ronco | October 5, 2006 02:13 PM

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