How indeed refreshing that after soooo many years The Economist FINALLY speaks well of an Italian politician, in this case Italy’s PM Mario Monti in Charlemagne’s March 10th, 2012 editorial, “Mario, put on your toga” (p. 35)!
And indeed what sophisticated words from the introduction:
“Such is the reverence for Mario Monti that some compare him to Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus, the patrician recalled from retirement to save ancient Rome. Legend recounts how Cincinnatus was working in his fields in 458 BC when he was approached by messengers, told to don his toga and informed that he had been appointed dictator for six months to confront the Aequi, who had trapped a Roman army. Having defeated the foes, Cincinnatus surrendered his absolute powers and returned to the plough, refusing all spoils and gifts”.
The worrying part though of this rather interesting and detailed article comes at the end where Charlemagne says that:
“And just as Cincinnatus was recalled a second time, to prevent a plot to overthrow the Roman republic, Mr. Monti may yet be summoned to serve as Italy’s president—if only to dispel any risk of Mr Berlusconi getting the job”.
Italy’s current president, Giorgio Napolitano, recently said that in 2013 he’ll be stepping down and won’t go for another seven-year term. His “poltrona” (seat) will therefore be free. I still recall having told a good friend of mine over at the New York Times in Rome back in November, 2011 as Mr Silvio “Bung Bunga” Berlusconi stepped down as Italy’s (disgraced) PM that watch out, I bet you anything he’ll aim for the Quirinale (the presidential palace) and Napolitano’s position! My journalist friend said: “No way, he’s washed up”!
Bets on that sooner or later we’ll see Don Silvio coming back once again, but this time (and with one MEAN “vendetta” too) as Italy’s prez???