Posted by: Claudio Carbone | 19 December 2010

Why Italy is not the subject of a scientific study?

We could be a whole new species, for the similarities we share with the other fellow europeans.
I just got news that the representative of Berlusconi’s party at the Senate (the “would-be” high chamber of the italian law-making system), in light of the recent events during the voting for the distrust motion against the actual prime minister himself, proposed preventive arrests of supposedly violent, insurrectionalist, eversive students.

Now. Students currently form a strong part of the manifesting people. That’s because, in a leap of far-sightedness, current government is cutting massively in instruction and research. Universities are still waiting for 2010 fundings to be made available, while 2011 are estimated to be nearly halved. All of this while paying massive amount of public money to private schools and universities (a law that posed private education on the same level as public was passed by a previous Berlusconi govern, it is whispered that it was a favor to the Vatican, because a great majority of the private schools are catholic of some type). So while people need to possess thousands of dollars to afford MIT, Berkley or (thousands of Pounds for) Hoxford or Cambridge, which is right because they offer something more then other, in Italy you have to pay thousands of euros to Luiss, Bocconi, Lumsa, or whatever but they are also getting funded publicly. Effectively reducing the already smeared availability of resources for legitimate public education.

In all of this the current “feeling” about working is that you can get a decent contract only if you know someone, otherwise you’re stuck at short-time few-guarantees no-future no-pension contracts. A proof of this is the current roman court investigation into allegedly direct nominees in a number of publicly owned companies in the Rome zone. Ama (municipal waste management), ACEA (water and electricity) and Atac (public transportation) are directly controlled by the Rome Town Hall and between them three, more then 2000 direct nominations in the last two years are under scrutiny.

So students are going to fatiscent buildings, most lacking basic security (in my time fire estinguishers were nowhere to be seen), trained by underpayed and uncontrolled (in the productivity sense) teachers. Their future is a university with ever diminishing resources, no industry bridges of any sort. And what they can aspire to is a short-time contract not even granting them any pension.
Are they wrong to protest?

Now what is the italian Senate? From www.senato.it you can read
The 315 elected senators must be at least 40 years of age and their electors must be over 25. In addition to elected members, the Senate also includes life senators – who are appointed by the President of the Republic “for outstanding merits in the social, scientific, artistic or literary field” – and the former Presidents of the Republic, who are ex officio life senators.
So it looks like this chamber is comprised of the most influential, carefully chosen, important people. Ex presidents, people elected by adult citizens. You’d think these are good people. Good politicians.

Maurizio Gasparri is the representative at the senate of the PDL (the Berlusconi party). Ex telecommunication minister he had this to say today:

“Invece delle sciocchezze che vanno dicendo i vari Cascini e Palamara, qui ci vuole un 7 aprile. Mi riferisco a quel giorno del 1979 in cui furono arrestati tanti capi dell’estrema sinistra collusi con il terrorismo.

Instead of all that rubbish Cascini and Palamara have been talking about, what we really need is another 7th of April. I’m talking about that day in the 1979 during which many heads of left movements colluded with terrorism were arrested.”

So a senator asks for preventive arrests off dissenting students on the basis that they are estremists. Just think of this. A senator, meaning someone representing the population, emboding responsibility, thoughtfullness, far-sightedness, care for the people and the nation. A kind of elder of the nation, to whom people have decided to delegate great power in great decisions. The representative of the biggest party governing the nation and supporting the prime minister. Such a person asks to arrests boys and girls of shool and university age just because they manifest.

AND NOBODY CRYS FOUL!!!


That’s the problem with us italians. Nobody (important) is really asking for his head to roll. People, the people who support his party, are not crying scandal and abuse. Where are they? Where is dignity? What is the difference between preventively arresting students because a few of them may eventually be violent, and preventively arresting black people because they may be violent? There isn’t any. But we italians don’t understand that. Because teachers no longer teach us how to THINK. And still, the first cuts are always in education…

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