Brexit psychodrama goes on… hyper-villain laugh mode

Needless to say, or to add to many others, English (+ Welsh) psychodrama goes on. I strongly believe Mr. Trump is Batman (I hope I’ll have time to write about later). The dark cavalier who returns to make Gotham high again has a villain as… allay: Mrs. Theresa May, who deports people to Singapore after 27 years of marriage to a pure English and so forth…

Good luck folks!

Robotech (aka Macross), the utmost evidence of the Japanese resistance in war times

Like all the boys and girls of my generation – the mighty and shiny 80s in Italy – I grew up with massive doses of bread&Nutella plus Japanese cartoons in winter afternoon (my wife is the only I know who didn’t use to spend time in this way). Those cartoons have done the fortune of many local Italian broadcasters earlier, and swallowing-all-of-them Mr. Berlusconi later (to buy this cartoon was cheap; commercials within them profitable…). Many have been the cartoons I really loved: Tiger Mask (L’Uomo Tigre), Mila & Shiro, Sanpei (Gianmichele Baroni casting as the sparing fisherman), Holly & Benji, Ken Shiro, Lamu, many many others… and… ROBOTECH.

The problem with Robotech is that it didn’t have a theme song to be sung by children. For this reason, I think, I forgot totally that name, but definitely not its general plot and its basic features. It really impressed my imagination. For years I believed that Earth was rounded (come on!), but I genuinely believed that Japan was outside of it. Japan in my mind was in a Mother Ship floating in the deep space, shipping us from time to time cool technology in change of – who knows – fresh fruit? The reason why my hometown, Florence, had always a plenty of Japanese people was not explained by my theory, if not by saying: “Yes, ok, they are Japanese, but they are here for tourism. In fact, they look at the sky all the time because they don’t have one in their space shuttles”.

This cartoon, whose story should have told about 1999, is well worth a post here as I think it may go a little further the typical nostalgia feeling (Zarocalcare also uses this vibe). Robotech is – in my very amateur vision on the issue –, more than other Japanese manga, a sort of rejection of psychological and political elaboration of WWII. It looks that from some points of view they never lost it, or that a Third War could have been/be a revenge of what happened in the 40s.

It is not only the Little Planet Earth (Japan, outside the metaphor) being invaded by 10 times taller aliens (US people, outside metaphor); it is not only the supremacy of technology Humans (again, the Japanese people) can copy and then overcome in comparison to aliens (US one). It is not only the idea of Nuclear War and life extinction. It is not the usual eternal battle between graceful-Good versus ugly-Devil in a oversimplified Manichaeism. It is not just the usual chivalric idea of going to die dreaming a lady who perhaps loves you and is waiting for you in a safe place. It is not just a more sophisticated version of the Shintoist connection between humans, their tight roles never to be overpowered, and technology. it is not the transposition of perfect brilliant career in army to be reproduced (of course failing) in a Japanese company. It is not only the idea that in war the Enemy is worse and worse than you think as it is dis-human (sure, never thought to teach children that Enemies may think exactly the same?!). It is also the idea of everlasting battle for one’s survival. The triumph of the idea that before surrender you may also destroy everything: your loved habitat and your civilians included. It has also a SS nazi-style jet pilot mentoring the main character, what a privilege.

When we hear that Japan is eager in getting again its army and weapons to tackle bold contemporary China in order – also – to boost one’s poorly performing economy, and when we will hear something more about Trump’s concrete proposal to make Japan pay for its defence, well, let’s think that culture is very resilient and that Japan is extremely refined and cultivated yes, but also champion in never say “I surrender”. But Japan is also the Third Hand of Nazi-Fascism. It is the Country that indicated to civilians to commit suicide instead of surrender to Americans telling false news about their possible treatment as prisoners. I don’t think, watching again this series, that to have a Japanese army is a good idea.

I am one who believe in the credo “history repeats always itself”, but I eschew the following automatic sentence about “drama, tragedy & farce”. I believe it repeats itself under different forms you may also not recognize at the beginning (this is a point for a different post in the deep future when Mars will be populated by Italians making pizza space-spicy mushrooms & smoked warthog).

I liked this aggressive cartoon. It is clever, it has some plot. I cherish it and it was so great to watch it again after 30 years over Youtube, the book of memories actually. But for the sake of human being, I don’t envisage any Japanese army any more. “We must win” (it’s a theme of the cartoon, sung by the loved lady of the main character, of course!) and we shall win if we don’t make any further war. We shall win if we go to the space to dwell other planets, hopefully because we are not destroying the first we have lived for so few millennia by now.

The Catholic School, a novel by Edoardo Albinati (“La scuola cattolica”)


After having read “Doctor Faustus” by Thomas Mann, a real masterpiece, I wanted to approach some Italian literature, something shorter and different. “The Catholic School” was advised to me, and so I got the Kindle version of it. The dotted line told me promptly the approximate length… 1300 pages in the traditional format!

But this novel is based in a specific historical affair (“the Massacre of Circeo”, a true story of rape and murder), the troubled 70s in Italy and specifically in Rome, in a specific area I know quite well: Trieste Area. This novel is about what neo-fascism was in Italian Republic. It was presented to me by my friend Frescobaldo (a name of fantasy like many in this book) as a novel unveiling some mysteries of those times as the author really was schoolmate of some criminals in a famous denominational “Grammar School”: San Leone Magno (“Great Sacred Lion”).

The number of vignettes this novel made me re-emerge from my personal life are countless (I am 22 years younger by the way), but as a sociologist I’d like to cite three points I deem essential and a total novelty in how the 70s are exposed:

  • The real nature of the neo-fascism is here brutally and at the same time analytically dissected. This is a psychological and societal analysis of what neo-fascism was, and unfortunately has continued to be until mid 2000s. It tells the mistakes and why it was difficult to understand overwhelmingly the phenomenon (perhaps until the third point of this list was alive). In few words, neo-fascism has been a desperate trial to find protagonism. Neo-fascism was the acknowledgment that Italy was not coming back nor establishing what Spain, Portugal or Greece were (and were about to stop to be). Neo-fascism also was totally unable to stop the Communist Party, that failed to get political power for other reasons. Neo-fascism was also closer to Nazism than Fascism. The absurd gender education and values transmitted by a dramatically changing Catholic Church made the rest in “mistaking the doses in the pursuit of education”, as the Author affirms. This novel really gives explanations to facts that I was hardly able to give any, as the 70s never ended in the 80s, 90s and 2000s to expand their, although weaker and weaker, cultural waves (I am talking especially to students’ movements).
  • Consequentially, The Truth about many mysteries in 70s Italian history is gotten not from a deeper knowledge of conspiracy-like theories and evidence (I confess I like a lot the genre); to understand the truth is more likely to accept that some people – like Angelo Izzo, the most famous of the three monsters of Circeo – have been purposely false informers with the only aim to get attention on them. It was just selfish perverse narcissism. Deeper understating of history comes from deeper understanding of changes in the reproduction of values (what else education is?!). In one word, which I can’t translate with accuracy, a person like Izzo was just a delatore (a would say a kind of “fake informant”).
  • The liberal, pro-Enlightenment intellectuals of the 70s, usually from the Left spectrum of Italian politics (mostly Communist of variants of it), are definitively overcome and affectionately explained in their erudite contradictions. The figure of “professor Cosmo” is particularly sound and humane to this regard. I may add that if recently the former leader of the Left Party “Rifondazione Comunista” declared to have found his family in “Comunione e Liberazione” (a very strong Italian conservative Catholic lobby), Albinati was very mild depicting this end of “public Atheism” in Italy. (To this regard, and for the taste of complex plots too, I may say Albinati looks like Sorrentino)

The “Second Vatican Council” and its implementation is at the very root of this socialization dynamic via education, even though interestingly enough it is never mentioned across the book. For those who would define themselves liberal and/or Catholic, this point ought to be of some interest as in my personal experiences in that Area of Rome and in 8 years of Catholic denominational Schools in Florence, I may say that during the Polish Pope epoch those values and spirit have been abandoned and at the same time “adjusted & fixed”.

I found nevertheless a weak point: although I couldn’t get rid of my Kindle until I finished it all, I think the book is a little longer than necessary. It could have said all it tells in much less pages. I, on my behalf, strongly recommend this novel to whoever is interested to understand politics, gender issues and the first cohort of people in the Western world who experienced a structural crisis in Italy. To me, as part of a even greater crisis (the current one) who grew up in the shining 80s, this novel is particularly essential.

[In the pic below: Gianni Alemanno in the 70s with neo-fascist symbol and during an extreme-right demonstration. He eventually become the disastrous Mayor of Rome in 2008]


gianni alemanno

Countdown of eminent condemned people for the 2015 year

2015 will be remembered as a year with a reasonable number of bloody events. Maybe not like the 9/11, whose year (2001) is sometimes omitted until got forgotten, but for sure some contradictions reached critical points. Here a modest suggestion for a tentative list of the 10 most evil characters of the year.

# 10 – Russian Airplane in Sinai, Egypt

Airplane crushes go as the leitmotiv nowadays. Once upon a time naval cruisers triggered countries to enter global wars (i.e. US in WWI); nowadays powers communicate with air crashes. In this episode, ISIS tells Mr. Putin that Al Sisi is not totally in control of his Country.


# 9 – Ukraine, still the huge buffering pillow between Russia and Central Europe

Although happened in 2014, the death of Dutch people flying toward Malaysia via Ukraine (or Russian Federation?!) skies is still not clear. Who is the motherfucker who fired a civil plane? And who is so clever to decide to fly over there? When I was a teenager an Italian Encyclopedia made an advertisement on TV: a Soviet astronaut landed down to “Mother Russia” and a female peasant replied: “What the hell! This is Ukraine!” Meanwhile the travel of the astronaut, USSR fell and even many other countries were born (i.e. Slovakia, in the ad) and that’s why people had to update their encyclopedia. After a little more than 20 years, the same woman has no answer about what happened.


# 8 The perfect Islamist kamikaze air crash

Still with Malaysia airlines, a plane flying to China just disappeared. None know where it exactly crashed, but the most likely hypothesis is that the two pilots wanted to kill all the infidel Chinese and, probably, wanted to underline their credo: “democracy is dead” (see pic). In this case my complain is against the international rules: how can a plane disappear?! Why can’t human kind rescue a black box in any dot of the Ocean? But even more urgent: how the hell companies recruit pilots?


# 7 Yep, how the hell Human Resources work in airplane companies?

That’s what I thought as the German Andreas Lutz came out to be depressed after having suicide himself with an entire crowded plane. How can Germany, the country of “Technological Supremacy”, morality, goodwill to teach other countries around how to rule oneself, let a depressed drive a plane? Western culture is pretty weak if compelled to answer these questions… Or perhaps it is just wrong that there is so much supremacy in technology (see Volkswagen affair) and moral superiority (see the implications of German banks in Greece’s bankrupt) in Germany.


# 6 – The devotion to Mammon at the Holy See

Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, one of the most influential Bishops at the Holy See, fell into a scandal this year. Probably many people outside Italy, having no obligation to follow the predications of these people in public television broadcasters, were not reached by the news. After the scandal, he “realized to have damaged a hospital” and ordered a bank transfer of 150.000,00€ from his personal cash account to refund the hospital. Dedication to human affairs became devotion to mammon sometimes, it is clear. However, a pic tells more than 1000 pages of documental-books. Here you may appreciate the previous Pope Benedictus XVI covering his face from the sight of Bishop Bertone. A coincidence? People who like conspiracy theories will say “no!”

cardinal Bertone

# 5 – Charlie Hebdo, the overcome event

The 2015 started by storm with the Charlie Hebdo massacre. Despite being the perfect candidate to the #1 of this New Years Eve’s countdown, it dropped down “because of their own success”, one may ironically say. Their strategy got a rapid development and the theological deep implications of iconoclasm lays apart from all this banal mess.

Three Terrorists Killed, 1 At Large

# 4 – The double version of vanity

Not so differently from #2, here one of the lady who would pretend to change the Western world, unveils herself. Like other people, they are from the middle-lower social classes such as Italian terrorists in 70s (red or black, no differences) came from middle-upper classes and pretended to represent the lower classes. Vanity prevails the Islamic veil in two meaning: first because she was used to be narcissist before her “conversion” (on the left); second, the Islamic veil doesn’t cover her persistent vanity (on the right) and incapability in having an adult role in society, that Western society that gave her a decent life.


# 3 – The Egyptian Police slaughter against poor tourists

It is clear that the Tunisian massacres met all the criteria for this countdown, but I’d like to underline to what extent legal and “good” forces are ineffective sometimes. In Egypt, police misunderstood tourists with ISIS militants and they killed all of them. One reason more to postpone any intention to visit those countries in these times.


# 2 – Purposely I don’t put the main Paris attack as the number one. I don’t even want to give them the satisfaction to be such important. They are the lice of the Western peripheries, a byproduct of a wrong acceptation of urbanism, development, social emancipation and integration. Their understanding of themselves is very poor as many of them serve as foreign fighters to actually export once again the Western waste in other places (i.e. Syria), whereas they believe to be part of some alternative, namely some extremist Islam. In this pic, one may appreciate the stupidity in jester mode of one of the species. Very different from Ayatollah Khomeini or other persons devoted to the Obscure Force.


# 1 – The utmost “daughter of a pimp”

If “son of a bitch” is pretty used worldwide, for gender equality I would like to coin “daughter of a pimp” to express the same concept of “asshole” or “jerk”. In this case we are still in European Union, Nobel prize for peace, more specifically in Hungary. Journalist Mrs. Petra Lazlo gets my top award as “closest damned character to Lucifer in 2015”. As a compatriot of Dante Alighieri I have no doubts that He would have agreed with me: this person went beyond any excuses in behaving like that, and must be condemned to a proper doom. For her, infinite stumbles of her own will happen at any step, but the condemnation is not just that. She will be destined to be helped by other people and she will be forced to realize to what extent she was an asshole, until one day she will finally redeem herself by acknowledging her wrong attitude, becoming hence a different person, a person with a regained soul.


This video grab made on September 9, 2015 shows a Hungarian TV camerawoman kicking a child as she run with other migrants from a police line during disturbances at Roszke, southern Hungary. After the footage appeared, the camerawomen was fired on September 8 by N1TV, an internet-based TV station close to Hungary’s far-right Jobbik party. The woman, later named as Petra Laszlo, can be seen tripping a man sprinting with a child in his arms, and kicking another running child in two separate incidents. The scenes took place as hundreds of migrants broke through a police line at a collection point close to the Serbian border where thousands have been crossing over each day for the past month. AFP PHOTO / INDEX.HU

We got married and “pregnant” in 2015. In 2016 our daughter is supposed to be born. My aim will be to start from Heaven instead from Hell, like Dante did. I want to tal

Rome sucks, Romans deserve it. An epitaph in favor of Mayor Ignazio Marino

One of the most interesting blogs in the last times I was living in Rome was “Roma fa schifo” (Rome sucks). Its mission is to highlight examples of degrade in public spaces without a clear political affiliation, at least at a first appearance. Rome to me really sucks and my point in this post is that people from Rome deserve it. Culture is the main cause: there is a widespread cognitive incapacity to grasp the importance of the “law whenever it doesn’t touch one’s contingent interest” (rights in contraposition to law, or general norma agendi). I consider to this regard this, sociologically speaking “lack of civicness”, a distinctive trait of Italian people. Rome, to this regard, is a cultural average in its geographical middle position. Maybe in the south it is even worse, maybe in the north it is a little better, but – believe me – Italians are all the same at any latitude.

I have already expressed my fears of Marino being pushed down the Tarpean Cliff by its own citizens, but in the last hours it looks that all is falling down. For the persons who may read these few sentences, I would like to summarize what Marino did:

  • He showed to be “the alien”, a person totally external to the sticky smelly messy corruption that the previous post-fascist mayor did. Official trials unveils possibly a “new Roman mafia”. People to large extent don’t like the alien, especially if the alien is going to touch the system. Italian, quoting Ennio Flaiano, love green-skin Martians. They would welcome him saying “Hey, a Martian!” and a few seconds later they would continue to do the same like nothing happened. Rome is told to be “an open city”. I realized that it is more anarchical than open-minded or liberal.
  • He not just ended the waste financial disaster, he implemented new systems, although actually things were changing even before (i.e. the compulsory recycling of food domestic waste). People hated and made prank of him.
  • He made the road to the Colosseo pedestrian, forever. This is so cool as completely unpopular. People say that when Marino says that he wants all the citizens to be allowed to visit the Colosseo as Mr. Obama did, Marino unveils his idiot inner soul. Sure… this people argue that to be able to pass from the Colosseo by car is good to lessen the traffic jam for the whole city. This argument is comic.
  • He showed honesty (something I frankly never believe totally in) and as a result people labeled him as the “honest but ineffective”
  • He started to be persecuted by newspapers, especially those funded by the “brick&mortar” industry because he ended any embeddedness to that system. The public opinion minimize this and believe in any allegation he got.
  • He cleaned up his own party that was not so much less implied to corruption
  • He is quite poor in communication (I love politician who are not good in public speaking!) and he is a target of any possible political accusation. To this regard PM Renzi is playing against him like a cat with a mouse, waiting only to get tired to hit him with the final mortal nail. Public opinion continues to see Renzi as a wicked probe, and Marino as an underdog. The example of him going to Philadelphia, US, to visit the Pope (who later said “I didn’t invite him!”) is unbelievable: how can a person not to realize that people will make laugh of you?!
  • His safety is seriously at risk, but public opinion condemn him for spending holidays abroad.
  • He made a real, but even insufficient, spending review, doing what exactly “the people” asked in a populist way in the last times: to cut, to cut and to cut any privileges to the political stiff class. Public opinion, by observing that this really was happening, remained uninterested. (I am not surprised: people condemn big inequalities in order to self justify one’s little ones, it’s a cognitive trick. Without the big thief, they feel phased out and can’t believe they couldn’t be any more little thieves. Many people prefer to be robbed of many public money but be allowed to rob few money…)

Like me, many friends of mine have my same position, but – knowing a little about Rome and its inhabitants – I’m afraid we are a minority. Marino looks like those politicians from Sicily who got murdered by mafia because they were against the mafia and at the same time were always a step backward to any threat. It is very sad to see that after many years the Italian public opinion is not so smart in detaching the importance to sustain a person, at least until the next natural election for the authentic and unique Capitol Hill.

For this reason I want to express publicly all my sympathetic vision (and, perhaps, political sympathy if he will be forced to resign) to Mr. Ignazio Marino, the dead-man walking whose beard doesn’t hide his sadness to feel lonely and scorn toward a massive public opinion that – I am sure – he considers as deficient people. Whatever may happen, Marino will remain my last and best Mayor in Rome. After having experienced the hyper-Catholic Rutelli, the radical chic Veltroni and the numb Alemanno, I’ll try to move my Italian address and its political rights to the home town, Florence.

#CharlieHebdo ’s “Do not impose on others what you do not wish for yourself.”

Let me say first I twitted #JeSuisCharlie and my profile pic over facebook, such as the wall, are dedicated to these several attacks that shocked me. I hope they will all captured alive in order to interview them deeply. As a sociologist, I am strongly fascinated by the secularization process, which brought the western world to lead the world and see human kind in a different perspective. Among these things, there is the reduced and reduced use of censorship. We definitely don’t even mind a blasphemous things, not to mention sexual issues. As a result, not the combination of the two makes arise protests from anywhere. We strongly believe this is an accomplishment, and we consider some satirical journalism as valuable, even though sometimes it is only ignorant. As I said about Lars von Trier, we need this kind of people, even when their artistic and intellectual value is not clear. A society always needs a crazy who say the truth.

I strongly believe that people may have the right to have pornography consumption, drug consumption, and freedom to any vice. I don’t like the “Ethical State” that protect you from evil, because that is itself evil. Nonetheless, we can’t award drug addicted, we can’t let people smoke cigarettes or drink alcohol without blaming them. And we ought to understand better the “new western citizens”: Muslim people have the right as well to feel offended by any representation of Mahomet [why is iconoclasm a problem? This is a seed for a future reflection], as they don’t have the right to impose sort of dressing and so forth. Now, how can a journalist be sued if he/she is blasphemous by somebody else’s eyes? A fee? A public “sorry”? It would be like to eat pork in front of a Muslim. None can oblige anyone to don’t eat pork only because somebody else wouldn’t and stands in front of him/her by chance. Period. Some might be gentle in avoiding some pork one day if a friend is Vegan or Muslim, but this is wisdom to avoid some discussion that could not be so cool, nor deep intellectually. It is about being polite, not about having a good code for rights.


The question is censorship, and this makes any sense in our western world only in two cases: national or institutional security, when it threatens the State and its organs (or others’); when it may trigger negative emotional massive behavior. I claim attention (not censorship!) if I see some anti-Semitic staff; I should learn to claim censorship if satirical staff goes too far against some targets. Which is this limit? Hard to say, but this is relative too: only if worse situations are created, this negation of freedom can be tolerated. And even in this case it is a defeat, may be a strategic partial defeat, but it is a defeat all the way, itself. I may believe in the our western world (and I wouldn’t move anywhere else) just because censorship in the long period is happening less frequently.

However the ethical golden rule looks to creak: I may bet that killed journalists would have been pretty cool about some Muslims saying they were whatever and that Jesus, Voltaire, Zidane or whoever are the worse of the worse. Probably they would have smiled and drawn something else… Kant is not damn working here!

I too strongly don’t believe that we, as western world, are better, as we are more wimp in our souls than enlightened (while others may be are messed-up in other terms). Yes, we believe to have conquered freedom, while we lost in most of the cases the knowledge of ourselves. We replaced the liberation from superstition and the discoveries of sciences with the right to superficiality and empty hedonism. Are we sure we are not offended by the Holy Trinity by Charlie Hebdo only because we are tolerant, liberal and open minded, or a little due to our oblivion? Probably people in Middle East and other places look at us as people who are unable to respect anything: powerful people in their means, and weak in their intentions, as they are pushed by fool materialistic things.

This post has no point, as I don’t have an explanation, not to mention a solution, to the problem of integration of Muslims in western societies, as Syria and other places are fueled by people from our places. I have one goal: to read Oriana Fallaci as soon as possible.

Quotazioni e quorum per il nuovo inquilino del #Quirinale (elezioni del #presidentedellarepubblica )

Con l’appropinquarsi delle dimissioni annunciate di Napolitano II si è già aperto da tempo il toto scommesse su chi salirà al colle. Lo spettacolo messo in scena su Prodi due anni fa è di quelli patetici e vergognosi, di quelli che solo la DC è riuscita a mettere in campo. D’altronde un partito così grande non può che spaccarsi, almeno quando può decidere una partita da solo (dalla quarta votazione il PD da solo può eleggere il Presidente).

Si pubblicano di seguente le quotazioni per come sono state sponsorizzate dai Duchi di Bragança:

Romano Prodi (1/4): il politico migliore della seconda repubblica è anche uno dei peggiori comunicatori. È una persona molto seria e si può perfino fare affidamento sulla sua parola. Non si candiderà, non è un candidato (di certo non del PD), ma ovviamente accetterebbe un responso a suo favore. Non può non essere il favorito, dato lo spessore internazionale, in Unione Europea e oltre. È il candidato di Renzi, ma non di Berlusconi, il quale ormai conta come il 2 di picche quando si gioca a curling. Infatti il problema sarebbero i Cuperlo estensori di un D’Alema ormai politicamente defunto.

Mario Monti (1/40): ma chi lo vuole uno che è montato più della panna e che da Primo Ministro dice in Parlamento che non vede l’ora di non ricoprire più tale carica? E che la sta facendo solo perché gli è stato detto di farlo per fare il salvatore della Patria? Ottimo tecnico, pessimo politico: fa resuscitare Casini alla faccia della terzietà, il quale poi lo tromba sonoramente, lascia un ottimo 10% frutto del sentimento italo-cattolico della penitenza-patrimoniale dopo la confessione-espiazione dei bunga-bagordi-bunga. Dissipa tale consenso facendo apparire il NCC importante. “Ha la strada spianata verso il Quirinale”, si diceva. Quello era Ciampi, il quale sapeva il fatto suo, e comunque il politico che più ha avuto un ruolo simile a lui fu il concittadino Dini, molto più furbo e abile, ma comunque inadatto a un ruolo tanto delicato.

Rosi Bindi (1/10) si parla con insistenza di una donna al Quirinale, come fosse un segnale. Lo sarebbe stato molto di più ai tempi della Nilde Iotti, ma forse va bene anche così, un comunista era troppo anche per chi tollerava la CIA. La Bindi non lo merita perché donna, lo merita in quanto ottimo politico. Ha una limpidezza intellettuale da far invidia, posizioni bilanciate, realistiche, progressiste. Conosce le istituzioni come le sue tasche. Ha sempre pagato di persona per la sua indipendenza. Sarebbe un segnale di nettezza e di aria pulita, più che di quote rosa. Il suo unico neo è non essere conosciuta a livello internazionale, a meno che non sia giunta oltralpe la pessima battuta di Berlusconi (il quale non la voterebbe perché non ha le tette e labbra rifatte, che lui identifica come “bellezza”. Sul fatto che una persona debba essere bella si potrebbe anche essere d’accordo).

Emma Bonino (1/5). Un politico di antico lignaggio, mai una sbavatura rilevante. Diversamente da Pannella – che pare un matto in perenne crisi di astinenza da tv, più che da astinenza di zuccheri – ha dimostrato di essere sostanzialmente trasversale su molte politiche. Ha una dimensione internazionale. È un candidato molto serio.

Piero (o Pietro) Grasso (1/10). Ha il vantaggio di essere ben visto anche nel centro destra e di fatto è già il “vice-Presidente” (anche se non si dice così e un motivo c’è). Il problema è che poi ti tocca eleggere un Presidente del Senato, e a meno che il tutto non sia una strategia già pianificata, non credo che si voglia impegnare il mese di gennaio per fare ulteriori votazioni.

Sabino Cassese (1/25). A meno che uno non sia giurista, all’estero non lo conoscono, ma pochi ne sanno di diritto come lui. Una stagione politica che volesse essere veramente di riforme, e non solo a powerpoint, ne gioverebbe parecchio.

Stefano Rodotà (1/10) La piazza con entrata filtrata di Casaleggio (nota come la Rete) scelse lui. Non capisco come possa Rodotà non vergognarsi apertamente di una prova tecnica di elezione pseudo-presidenziale, essendo un fine accademico. È difficile che passi un accordo PD-M5S, dato che ormai si è capito che il gioco del M5S è non fare assolutamente nulla di politicamente rilevante.


I colpacci:

Il Compagno BR1 Tabacci (1/200). Per una via al socialismo guidata dal tomtom più che dalle pastoie del dibattito di Gotha, e per puntare su un’alleanza pragmatica con la Russia anziché perder tempo con la dialettica sull’ideologia tedesca. L’ago della bilancia è come il maggiordomo ai tempi di un assassinio: sempre meglio tenerlo d’occhio.

L’attuale ministro della difesa (1/400): ne hanno fatto il nome per bruciare un improbabile. Pago una pizza da Mezzero a tutti coloro che leggono il mio blog se la fanno Presidente. Si dica lo stesso per i vari Maestro Muti e altri nomi buttati lì per alzare la polvere.

Mario Draghi (1/spread). Sta bene dove sta, lasciatelo lavorare in pace e magari fra 14 anni se ne riparla.

Naoto Date (1/500): in teoria la Costituzione non dice che il Presidente deve essere Italiano. Dice che deve essere di 50 anni almeno, e l’Uomo Tigre era ventenne ai primi anni ‘70, quindi rientra. Pericoloso però lo scenario con un Giappone che vuole riarmarsi: riecheggerebbero gli anni ’30 del secolo passato e si finirebbe col dichiarare guerra alla Tana delle Tigri (che ha sede in Svizzera, come noto). Faremmo la figura dei Russi agli occhi dei Russi.

Inetto La Rissa (1/666). Il diavolo, spesso scovato sui social media travestito da babbo natale, sarebbe capace di legalizzare la cocaina solo per reperirla meglio. Si scoprirebbero ufficialmente, più che finalmente, gli autori delle stragi nere perché darebbe loro la medaglia d’oro. L’Italia uscirebbe dall’UE, dall’ONU, dalla FAO e rivaluterebbe la Corea del Nord.

La Santanché (all’anagrafe Daniela) (1/999). Una donna sì, ma di centro-destra. Un delirio di maleducazione gratuita. M’immagino la scena per la designazione del Primo Ministro: “le conferisco il mandato, ma con il dito medio alzato, sttrrrrronzo!”. A sto punto meglio Brunetta (non la sorella, Renato), che quanto meno è intelligente.

Laura Boldrini (1/500). La Boldrini ha dimostrato di non capire nulla di politica, interpretando malissimo il ruolo di Presidente della Camera e gestendo peggio l’aula piena di grillini. Per carità, dall’oggi al domani è stata messa lì senza esperienza e io avrei fatto peggio magari, ma non è il posto dove dà il suo meglio. Persone con un dubbio senso dell’ironia potrebbero pensare a Nichi Vendola e dire che è equidistante sul genero, ma il punto è che Nichi non lo voterebbero da Tabacci a destra.

Raffaele Mascetti (1/1815). Il Conte ha già fatto capolino nel 2013, e la restaurazione dopo le schiocchezzuole giacobine ha sempre un certo fascino. Il Conte Mascetti ha le pezze al culo, cosa che lo rende sintonico con l’umore serpeggiante nel belpaese. L’unico problema è che il PD sarebbe diviso, perché Civati gli preferirebbe il Professor Sassaroli, più rigoroso nell’attuazione delle supercazzole.

Matteo Salvini (4/1000). I leghisti sono 4 gatti sui circa 1000 grandi elettori. Un Presidente che anziché essere ben visto dagli USA sia ben visto da Putin sarebbe la fine.

Oscar Giannino & Bigazzi (1/∞) Per il rilancio del made in Italy, moda e gastronomia in un’alleanza in cui capeggerebbe un antico motto, in versione revamping: “del gatto non si butta niente”. Bigazzi alle prese con le fettine; Oscar con le pellicce tigrate. Ma l’Uomo Tigre venderà caro il mantello!


[per chi non ci fosse arrivato col senso, ma fosse arrivato fin qui nella lettura, il post è semiserio]

Kobe the soloist

One passage of Kobe Bryant’s statement impressed me: the path to achieve the goal has been enjoyed more than the goal itself. Kobe Bryant became popular as he joined the NBA, just when I broke seriously my knee, in 1999. I used to play basketball every single day, under the rain, with low temperatures, in summer time. My engagement was even crazier if you think about my mediocrity: I’m 1.72cm, and never I have been really so good. Only once in my career scored more than 20 points in a game. Few times my team won just because of me (but you can bet, I remember very well those days!). Many times I gave my honest part and it was a school for my personality to deserve a place in the starting five in a team, when I was even shorter and a slim teenager. This to say that after my very serious injury, I swore to quit with basketball and take it as a social. I quit even watch and follow it. It was like to split a woman, and I drop the epopee of the Phil Jackson’s (it was his team, not any players’ team!) Lakers. I broke my knee due to over-practicing and due to my style, which was Larry Bird’s inspired. Yes, I grew up like Kobe watching VHS from NBA entertainment, and watching Capodistria channel that broadcasted some NBA: the Boston Garden was the coolest ground. Even though I was a real underdog, I feel legitimated to say something about Kobe. Even though news and facts about him came to me later on, when I rejoined some basketball in 2008 (sure, when the Celtics were regaining their deserved place and when I could play every day in Madrid). To see this guy, Kobe, couldn’t make me turn a fan of him: I’m a Celtics one, never I’ll be a Lakers supporter! But his past in Italy, in Pistoia especially, so close to my hometown, let him be a special persona to me. I even played my most important game of my life in the same ground of Kleenex Pistoia in mid 90s, just were the first league used to. It was an emotion to play in a place I used to watch on tv.

I even appreciated his “arrivederci” in a 5’ long spot about mamba. He talks Italian and I’m flattered for this. A flamboyant spot I didn’t like that much, apart some of his irony. MJ Nike’s commercials were better (a small sample). But this is not his fault.

The point of this point is another one. It’s about the second passage that impressed me: the story about the summer league with zero point. Kobe is not only a star with a talent: he created his talent. This is a point that must be considered. He got a further father, MJ, and he decided to follow and overcome him. This is a Greek myth tale, and we can only pay a tribute to him. It’s a Greek myth tale like Larry and Magic struggling like two opposing eachother Laocoontes.

But here I would like to make some critics, as Kobe is not the star I grew looking at. Kobe looks to me an American culture product, very obsessed with regaining his identity as a not-from-overseas-guy. Suffering this, he needed to show and develop therefore a hyper-American way of embodying his leadership. The soloist. The soloist is not necessarily selfish, and for sure is an example. A champion is the literal and semantical meaning: you must compare you to him, and you even and formerly must deserve to be comparable. It looks he aimed more at individual goals, rather than team’s ones. He is not desperately demanding from teammates like MJ; he wants to clear the place to be like the prima donna in opera. This is the opposite of my conception of basket, which is closer to Phil Jackson one: extra-passes, nation defense until garbage time, making score the last guy from the bench in order to don’t let have the opponent any orientation, sound team stats as the way to go to the only achievement: team’s victory and “who cares about MVPs” as a shared philosophy. I’m sure Jax would agree with me. When your teammates claps you and join you spontaneously after an MVP, there you got real respect. To this regard Hakeem Olajuwon is the very example: he was a star but he was able to let other average people shine. He was the only carrier in Rockets’ two time champions (Clyde had lost his prime in the second title, and he was not a leader like MJ) and made the Rockets appear a devastating team, while potentially they were definitely not. That is playing in team sports!

As a matter of fact, faith, idols and myths are not only chosen: destiny gives you one. As religion: you may change, but basically it is given to you when you are a child. If you are a man, you follow your credo all the way. Mine was Larry Bird, and I shall always pay my tribute to him (here the best play ever). Kobe is for his generation: people a little younger than me I guess.

However, Kobe sei un grande. Hai riscattato quell’estate a Philadelphia e nessuno, nemmeno il più stronzo, ti potrà mai mancare di rispetto.


Raped Ukraine

I remember a dinner in Rome 10 years ago or so when we talked – Dr. Babbasky, president C. and me – about the bogus feature of the “Orange revolution” in Ukraine. Nonetheless, I felt always a little more sympathetic with the pro-European faction. Actually where all those orange (all of the same tonality) came from? Western intelligence(s), I’d say. Meanwhile attention over Ukraine felled. Only Julia Timoshenko’s face were hung on Campidoglio (the original Chapel Hill, in Rome) claiming on behalf of citizens of Rome freedom and justice for her. A nice and worthy quest; a poor analysis of the character in question and of the game at stake. Few people now remember the poisoning affair that obliged Ukraine to stay outside Europe for a while and to skip some turns regarding the entry into EU. The false step of the Vilnius agreements (Moldova, Ukraine and Georgia toward the European Union) brought directly into the nth war in Europe: eastern Ukraine. Meanwhile, “Maidan square”, Euromaiden, movement. A movement whose name is derived by its place: a square. Not the name of the square, the term square in Ukrainian. In English would be “square square movement”. Weird things. Europe is still far from resolving its everlasting taste and hungry for war for sacred turf, even if oil or other resources are not present. Donetsk and may be other oblasts are in critic turmoil with civilian paying a high prize.

Last year I promptly filled my twitter account with disapprovals against the Putin’s strategy and I began to follow a little more the Ukrainian affairs. I shall spare the reader my few points I got upon the issue and I skip to one single thing I witnessed.

I must say that if the formerly Polish city of L’viv is the most European of the Ukrainian cities, I difficultly can imagine how not so European Ukraine overall ought to be. L’viv is the only place where I put my foot (2011) and the city didn’t look like so much developed, even though very charming somehow. However the differences between Poland and Ukraine talk by themselves: to join the European Union and to have made deals for trade and industry production with western multinationals have brought a big difference at a glance if you pass through these two countries by bus. I don’t even need to say to which side prosperity, peace and civil rights stand now between Poland and Ukraine.

Ukraine looks to me like a raped woman. Everyone want to protect her in order to rape her and exploit her embodying the role of the pimp. Has ever Ukraine lived without a pimp? For sure no since the Soviet era, but the Western powers are not delivering so far a perfect situation for a state building process. Three ministers from abroad (from very anti-Russia countries) may be a help, but it is even a humiliation. I am afraid this will have a boomerang effect, one day.


I got this image from the Modern Tate, London, accompanied by Viviana. The pic is an early Soviet propaganda showing Ukraine as a crucified woman and Russia-USSR rescuing her from capitalism. Yep. I skip detailed consideration over the relations between Russia and Ukraine, it’s not my field. But historically Kiev is a “Rus” (Ки́евская Русь = The Rus of Kiev, The (ethnic-slavish) domain of Kiev). In fact the term “Russia” comes from the pre-Statual agglomeration of tribes, a find of slavish tribes. It’s like the USA would be called “Kingdom” because it was colonized by the English. We call a part of the States “New England”, not “Kingdom” nor “new kingdom of kingdom”, or “republic of kingdom”. However, Ukraine was never an independent State, neither between the two WWs, a thing that matters. 1990 was the first time ever in modern times.

This fact is weird, such as it’s weird that the borders of European Union would be so closed to Moscow. Russia’s vocation is to be an extra-European empire, even though Moscow is in Europe. I have been not sympathetic with Putin’s era since ever, but I must say that we are missing and misunderstanding Russia’s identity. Probably because since the fall of USSR Russians lost their redefinition of identity. So we are running the severe risk to don’t realize how Western world and Russia ought to cooperate in the most fruitful way.

The narration of anti-(Islamic)-terrorism didn’t work. Any foreign affair thought by Mr. Berlusconi or Mr. Bush couldn’t be right, neither work. They were too simple in these matters. European Union meant as an advancing frontier toward Moscow is chilling; while EU as a unique character making deals with Russia is still missing. Are we making again the same mistake other people like Napoleon and Hitler made? I am very favorable concerning expansion of Europe to the East, I reckon the enlargement to 25 was a big positive achievement (can you imagine Eastern Europe nowadays during the crisis outside EU?). But in the Ukrainian case we must be cautious. The mess of the airplane Malaysian Airlines MH17 should make us reflect. Yet, it is mandatory to monitor the neo-Nazi movements around there. What we really need is not only to let countries join the EU, we would definitely need to sit down with Russia. But diplomacy won’t solve all, will only lessen the mess. Russia needs a renewed identity. That’s the point. And if I’m right the consequence is bad for us, and worse for them. Winners can only be those who are witnessing, such as China.

One thing I must say: this new flag I watched this morning is much cooler of the previous one. It is aesthetically fashionable, while the former lacks originality. Even the Crimea’s flag is not beautiful, despite it is more credible. This new flag of a not believable country is very similar to the Confederate States of America’s one (the “Dixie” “South” flag). Coincidence? However, this is the epic bogus of the year in politics. After the bogus Red Cross from Russia to Eastern Ukraine aimed at refurnish the bogus Ukrainian rebels. Well, in terms of weird events there would be a plenty of to talk about.

The Great Leap Forward into the Nightmare (Tombstone [墓碑] by Yang Jisheng [杨继绳])

It happened to me to tell about “the great Chinese famine” to people who, may be, believed I was studying Mandarin with some Buddhist or Exotic passion (as a rejection or depreciation of one’s Western culture). You know, sometimes you say something not very comfortable about an issue in order to let the discussant realize you are not necessarily in charm with what you are studying. On the contrary, you desire to state that yours is an effort to study sine ira ac … studio. Well, when I used to say that cannibalism happened in late 50s, that sons and daughters were exchanged by parents in towns and villages in order to postpone the death due to starvation, I was not believed, even though famine was known. Truth is much worse. Mothers had to select whom among the sons to let survive, when parents didn’t cook sons directly (mind that not buried corpses all around didn’t miss in many places…). The reader of this well documented book may list a number of horrifying details and numbers which I skip.

There are no doubts: Chinese establishment still now is underestimating the biggest famine of human history in terms of absolute numbers. About 36 million people died; millions of children never came to the world due to the famine. What is more, the famine was the result of communist policies, not of weather conditions or wars. They created a disaster by themselves in the pathetic need to appear better than western world and other communist countries. Undoubtedly, Mao’s China reflects nothing but Mao’s and China’s inferiority complex toward the developed and industrialized western world that outclassed them. To call an agrarian policy “Sputnik” sounds comic, for instance. His cigarettes and privileged western food are a manifest demonstration of this rejection of tradition. In fact the contradiction between the Chinese tradition and western modernity was without solution. In late 50s this was translated into policies aimed at destroy traditional agrarian economy into a technological agrarian economy whose connection with basic science was totally absent. All was a matter of power, all was a matter of management of the party.

It was probably impossible to give rapidly a place for China in the post WWII world (for instance before WWII the Chinese GDP was higher than Italian one; China overcame Italy again only few years ago). Probably the only way to exit this very short period of inferiority toward the West (which begun in its seed in my opinion with the liberalization of porcelain production to boost commerce with Europe, but this would be a different post…) was to plunge oneself into a real nightmare to aftermath dive back into normality (which is domination for a country like China). The “rash advance” [冒进] motto worked very well. But it produced a great leap toward disaster.

The efforts by politics to hide the truth can only appear disgusting to a western citizen. But its study unfolds political sciences’ lessons: can a not democratic regime avoid self-destruction? Apparently no. In substance “communist” China actually shows the contrary. Chinese communism didn’t imploded so far, just changed the mode to be Chinese: from “the three red banners” [三面红旗], only the “Communism Wind” demised. Pragmatism remained along with the privileges and the corruption of the cadre system, which everybody knows but whose actual relevance and current consequences in very unequal society are still to be published in a book like this. Pragmatism and cynicism [使用的做法?], along with the eternal institution of the Emperor (a sole man at the lead) seem to be the actual everlasting traits of China.

My point of view is that this plain journalistic truth is interesting to understand how a system of power ought to be managed. To this regard, 毛同志was a rational “political animal” committed to the purpose of leading regardless anything else, with some wise moves worthy of appreciation for his cleverness and Machiavelliansim. One case lit my attention upon this: the “responsibility field”. They were basically a step back from pure communism to let peasants produce more to avoid the total collapse. This successful limited policy was not endorsed so much from Mao. He scared accuses to be not so leftist and at the same time needed empirical tests in social engineering. But at the same time as one person of the party (comrade Deng Zihiu [邓子恢]) highlighted publicly the advantages and sponsored this “experiment”, he was dismissed. Economic success was not so important like the conservation of power within the “红色的禁城”, the “Red Forbidden City”, the Party-State.

Having said that, I now can give more substance to one of the first lessons I got from Mrs.李, my first Chinese teacher at the 罗马大学的孔子学院: the shop in one of the first lessons has plenty of things. This meant that my 同学 and me were expected to learn a lot of new terms. Apart pedagogy, now I realize that there was a deep need to show that China was no (more) in a 3rd 4th world situation. She was happy to describe this sensation of plenty of little commodities, as far as I remember. She knew in her heart what Maoism was in reality. Less than a misery. Less then desperation. Less then resignation. Less than oblivion. Neither to flee in the wood were viable (trees were cut down to try to make steel… ineffectively, of course), nor to eat not edible wild grass or roots were possible. To collect corpses was condemned (unless the cadres could eat that flesh while condemning the guilty), but to have a private fireplace in one’s home was even less tolerated. In compensation, communist cadres were allowed to do everything, including to summon the cutest girls in the common kitchen not to cook (there wasn’t any more that much for peasants), but to rape them.

So, what is China today without a real and just historical narration of truth? What is the concept of history in Chinese culture? Something that is worthy to be changed at will according to current political needs? My visit in 2012 of the 历史博物馆 by the famous 天安门广场 suggests just this. If it is true that to control history is to control the present politically, and that museums are scientific elaborations, this point need more investigation.