The Padrino called a meeting yesterday. Silvio Berlusconi – 85 years old, seriously ill, in the middle of court cases, and close friend of convicted mafia men wants to be President of Italy when Mattarella chucks in the towel in the spring. Not only is it difficult to imagine that every judge in the land would have to have Silvio’s portrait hanging in his office, but it would top anything that Trump or Boris could dream up. Silvio would argue of course that his court cases have all ended in being archived: the counter argument would be that every time he has to go to court, he has to go into hospital for tests, meaning rescheduling of court time until the state of limitations calls time on the trial. The last time he was summoned he produced a piece of paper saying that he was seriously and permanently ill – which apparently wont stop him from being a president.
Even his most ardent fans grasp the fact that Silvio Berlusconi – named by loads of mafia turncoats as a pretty good friend of some of the most unpleasant mafia bosses – would reduce Italy to the status of a joke in Europe and beyond. Perhaps our senses have been numbed by Trump’s tenure in the White House, but Berlo (self confessed Prime Minister in his spare time) is hardly a shining example of a President.
We are now to be treated to months of endless jockeying and lobbying – Silvio has already sent out a full colour brochure to all MPs outlining why he should be a shoo in. Instead of dealing with the many and various problems facing teh country, there will be machinations and secret meetings to decide on the candidates, who are then voted for in parliament with, wait for it, a secret vote. It is unfathomable why the electorate cannot know who their elected representative votes to be the president of the republic.
And of course there is Renzi, friend of assassins, and grubby plier of half truths, who is trying to be kingmaker. He is, seemingly, happy to have Berlo as president – a strange 180 swivel from his earlier position, which evaporated when he and Silvio united against the M5S as being an ‘antidemocratic’ force. For one such as Renzi, who doesnt seem to give a monkeys for anything except his own ambition and advancement, it seems he is just laying down the basis for his own presidential bid in a few year.
The problem is the rest of the field of presidential pretenders. What a sorry bunch – there’s the arch hypocrite Casini, dead sheep Gentiloni, and an array of outsiders nobody outside the corridors of power has ever heard of. It says alot for the real state of Italy – not the one nominated country of the year last week – that there is nobody, NOBODY, who garners enough respect to carry off the job of President.