Draghi has been sworn in and all is well with the world. Apparently. Now there’s talk of new orange zones to battle Covid and not even a whisper of dissent. The last time this happened, a couple of weeks ago, there were calls for all and sundry to resign. In Italy, it doesnt take much.
There’s a line in the Leopard that reads – ‘Everything must change for everything to stay the same’ – which is the paradox of Italy, and exactly what we have just seen over the last month of parliamentary activity.
Superficially there have been convulsions and shifts, which result in a new government which exactly the same as the one which preceded it. Different ministers to be sure, but the ‘mission statement’ remains identical. The Italian state has had 160 years experience of doing one thing while telling its citizens another, chief amongst this being the myth of Italy being a democracy.
The rise and rise of Draghi to be annointed PM is, in itself, wholly undemocratic. He was, if certain journalists are be believed, huddled with Renzi and others by the end of last year. If not actually sure of his imminent ascension, at least sure enough to turn down a top job or two. Renzi, who acts for the shady powers which actually run Italy, concocted a crisis. Possibly he even canvassed Draghi himself, a devout Jesuit who also just happens to be the Pope’s perfect choice to step into the breach. It would be ridiculous to assume that this had anything to do with anything other than 200 billion that Italy is to get from Europe. Obviously the people who run Italy quite want the dosh for themselves and their mates – this is how Italy has worked since the dawn of time. The old PM – Giuseppe Conte, (widely popular and respected) was a loose cannon, not kowtowing to the chosen ones, and being against the MES – the widely ridiculed loan system Europe wanted to impose on ailing states to put them on par with Greece and a pre-failure footing. Renzi, Berlusconi and the Dems all favoured the MES – the 5Stelle not. Strangely Draghi, being a banker, also thinks the MES is a crock of shit, and now, miraculously, so do all its earlier supporters.
We therefore have a new government with all manner of people in it, some techicians and some politicians, with a handful drawn from each major party to keep them sweet – though how Berlusconi’s FI with a negligible presence in parliament manages to get 3 ministers is beyond most people, until you remember that Berlusconi is necessary to give Draghi a majority if the 5Stelle dont play ball.
The oligarchs who keep this ersatz democracy going must be thrilled that their master plan is working. By refusing – for the last 50 years – to pass an electoral law which would allow an absolute majority in parliament, they keep things as they wish them. A never ending coalition which ultimately allows an appointed government of the powers behind the thrones to keep the power behind the throne in power. Its a neat trick if you can pull it off – and in Italy where the laws on politics and media representaion have not only been roundly ignored but actively undermined by the bolstering of political seats on media outlets, ensures that ‘we’ the people only get the picture they want to draw for us. From right to left, apart from a very few voices in the wilderness, we are all beholden to Fiat, Benetton, Luxottica, Mediaset, Agnello and Mr Ferrero, Italy’s richest man. Add to this heady mix the Vatican, and then some rather influential people in the world of organised crime and you have an idea of who really runs Italy. Thus has it been and thus it will remain, everything changing to ensure no change at all.