The registered letter that kills

Pasolini and the Italians

In the last few years, there has been a flurry of registered mail. Once upon a time you ran to the Post Office to pick it up. It was a worry. Now you hardly notice them. They are simply just annoyances. The turning point came with the transfer of public services to commercial companies and payments to agencies charged with the task of receiving payments. If you kill your parents you can inherit the estate. If you donít pay for a particular tax, they confiscate your car, your house and your Little Tony records.
Andrea has written to me from Ciampino and he has attached a registered letter that was sent to him by the municipal company ASP CIAMPINO. Cost of sending the registered letter: 3.50 euro. Payment due: 0.02 euro.

Guess who pays the cost of the registered letter, the time spent on writing it, the registration, the sending? You know already: all the clients of the municipal companies or of any other public body that sends out threatening letters.
Anyone who pays taxes in Italy is super-controlled. If even one were to stop paying, in fact, the system would collapse. The checks are so severe and detailed that they can find details that have been ignored by any qualified accountant. Itís not unusual for someone who believes that they have paid ALL their taxes to receive a registered letter from the tax collection agency and they open it with terror, slowly, slowly like you do when you are looking at your hand in a game of poker. Their whole life passes in front of their eyes. Will it be the notaryís document relating to the grandfather 25 years ago or the invoice paid a month late to the electrician who ruined them for ever? When they read the amount of 18.50 euro to be paid on the tax return of three years before for a series of reasons that can never be understood (their accountant could help for a fee of 250 euro, but itís not worth it) they rush off to pay. Less than twenty euroÖ. They feel as though they have won Supernalotto.
The following day the same person receives another registered letter containing judicial documents. They are not there. They rush to the post office from their workplace already sweating. Has the next door neighbour taken out a court action? Has the company given them the sack? The former wife has called them to the Tribunal? None of this stuff. Itís a parking offence to be paid BY AND NOT AFTER Ö. Otherwise they will confiscate the car. But on that day they didnít use the car, they werenít in that street, in that city. The fine is 52.50. Better pay up rather than discuss it.
If you change your address donít leave a trace. Donít let anyone know where you are taking refuge.

Posted by Beppe Grillo at 08:03 PM in | Comments (1)
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One would think that a Prime Minister whose party is called "Popolo della liberta'" would welcome all the media competition it can get -one would think. But we're in Italy and in Italy common sense is scarce commodity. Imagine, a Prime Minister urging advertisers to boycott RAI (a state owned broadcasting system) because the Prime Minister deems RAI's news too gloom-and-doom and that's bad for Italians. The economy is tanking big time, so why bullshit people with phony optimism. In any event, RAI's economic reports on the economy are no more doom-and-gloom than any other news outlet. So, what's Silvio's game? Could it be that the Prime Minister,wishes RAI, a national broadcasting system, out of business so that his private media empire is free to control all the means of information in Italy? It sure could be that. In fact, most likely.

Posted by: lou pacella | October 29, 2008 03:37 PM

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