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April 8, 2009

Berlusconi opens mouth, emits sound
Posted by Teresa at 06:43 PM * 58 comments

From the Guardian:

The Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, today sparked controversy when he said the 17,000 people made homeless by Monday’s earthquake should think of themselves as being on a “camping weekend”.
Words fail me. Pity they didn’t fail him first.
Comments on Berlusconi opens mouth, emits sound:
#1 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 06:51 PM:

Does this remind anyone else of our own bozo former leader comparing the abuses at Abu Ghraib to a fraternity initiation?

Berlusconi should be sent on a "camping weekend." Drop him in the Amazon rainforest with two cans of beans and no can opener, and see if he comes out.

I think maybe he doesn't grasp that you can only say "pretend you did this for fun" if you're one of the people IN the situation. Life is Beautiful and all that. But for him to say it beggars the imagination.

#2 ::: KeithS ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 07:02 PM:

"Sparked controversy"? Is that the polite way of saying that if these people were to meet him they'd flay him alive?

Xopher @ 1:

Or Tom Delay's, "Now tell me the truth boys, is this kind of fun?"

Would this rainforest location be a place with leeches and botflies (don't Google)?

#3 ::: y ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 07:09 PM:

It's amazing Berlusconi can still make a noise with all of the feet he has stuffed in his mouth.

#4 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 07:47 PM:

Silvio has mastered the art of speaking through his arse.

#5 ::: Daniel Klein ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 07:51 PM:

Honestly? That guy makes W look pretty cool. I mean, he's not only offensively stupid, his cronies are also much more openly criminal (well documented mafia ties and all that) and his control over the media and opinions in his country is so obvious and unhidden that you can only come to the conclusion that he knows he's safe, no matter what. Every time he comes back into power it's worse. It's like his presidency is a wager gone horribly wrong... "bet you I can't say XY and remain in power of a relatively civilized, relatively democratic western nation!"

Trouble is, he keeps winning.

#6 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 08:14 PM:

Is there a Nobel Prize for cluelessness?

(I don't know whether to be relieved or depressed that Teh Grad-Level Dumb 'n' Tactless is not limited to American politicians.)

#7 ::: Steve C. ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 08:16 PM:

Perhaps Berlusconi should start thinking of himself as a former prime minister.

Italy has a parliamentary system, right? Sounds like it's time for a vote of no confidence.

#8 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 08:22 PM:

Shades of Barbara Bush, visiting the Houston Astrodome after Katrina:

What I'm hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this is working very well for them.

#9 ::: James D. Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 08:36 PM:

The important things about camping weekends are that you wanted to go on them, you prepared in advance, and when the weekend's over (that is to say, in two days), you go home.

#10 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 08:50 PM:

Is Berlusconi related to Pollyanna, she of the awesomely positive attitude?

#11 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 09:24 PM:

Xopher, #1: No, it's closer to Barbara Bush saying that the Katrina refugees who fled to Texas were "better off now -- this has actually worked out pretty well for them". Talk about moving your image from Elizabeth II to Marie Antoinette in one short sentence!

... and I see that Linkmeister beat me to it, and got the actual quote to boot.

#12 ::: ADM ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 10:08 PM:

just ...

#13 ::: Q. Pheevr ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 11:02 PM:

Not for nothing do they call him Burlesconi.

#14 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: April 08, 2009, 11:11 PM:

Q.Pheevr @ 13... Coughgagsplutter! Too bad Fellini isn't among us anymore to make a movie by that title.

#15 ::: LauraJMixon ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 12:05 AM:

Welcome home!

#16 ::: Earl Cooley III ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 12:23 AM:

The appropriate lolcat for this situation would be "I can haz cake?"

#17 ::: A.J. Luxton ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 01:22 AM:

Words fail me. Pity they didn’t fail him first.

On the other hand, there was definitely some fail involving him and words.

#18 ::: Giacomo ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 02:10 AM:

Steve @7: you have no idea :) half of the Italian parliament is composed by Silvio's lawyers, employees, previous mistresses, current mistresses, etc... He's perfectly safe. Of the two, it's the parliament that should be worried.

The real scandal at the moment is that the government won't drop a proposal (currently being discussed) which would significantly relax current building regulations... and increase the probability of these disasters happening again and again. After all, why have only one "9/11 event", when you can repeat it every few years? I guess Silvio-the-TV-tycoon knows how important it is to keep the audience interested.

#19 ::: Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 02:32 AM:

Welcome home, guys; glad you weren't closer to the earthquake.

Maybe the camping trip Berlesconi's talking about is the one where the teenage girls all end up sliced into cold cuts and the teenage boys have meat hooks stuck through them by the nutter in the bizarre mask.

#20 ::: Anna Feruglio Dal Dan ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 03:23 AM:

Berlusconi is not stupid, alas. To his credit, he also never actually tortured or killed people. He is an offensive piece of shit but he was also legitimately and clearly voted in - three times. Which says a lot about the respective moral worth of the US and Italian people, as in, you guys didn't actually vote the bastard in.

The strange thing is that unlike many other circumstances this particular quip went almost unnoticed in Italy, basically because we are so used to this kind of things that we go, yeah, whatever. He's said a lot worse, hell he says that on a daily basis, only it's usually about matters that don't get on the front page of international media. At this point, Italians only react with desperation when he does it where others can see. (I am sadly amused that at this point, even when he is just mentioned in passing, expats Italians come out of the woodwork to apologize profusely on any international newspaper that has comments enabled. It's a reflex action.)

Of course, he also has done much worse. He has an uncanny gift for opening his mouth and saying exactly the most offensive thing at the worst possible moment (he did invite women who couldn't make ends meet on temp work to "marry a rich man like my son", for example), but has also actually mightily contributed to demolishing most of what was working and good in Italy.

Since he was, I repeat, legally voted in not one, not two, but THREE times, I gave up on Italians as a group, packed up and went.

The US did not deserve George Bush. He was not really representative - none of the Americans I know are anything like him. Italians deserve Berlusconi.

The tragedy is that, of course, not all of them do. The country is kept afloat, now as throughout history, by the slightly minoritarian part that actually knows their stuff and patch up things with increasing desperation.

#21 ::: Anna Feruglio Dal Dan ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 03:29 AM:

The real scandal at the moment is that the government won't drop a proposal (currently being discussed) which would significantly relax current building regulations... and increase the probability of these disasters happening again and again. After all, why have only one "9/11 event", when you can repeat it every few years? I guess Silvio-the-TV-tycoon knows how important it is to keep the audience interested.

What he said. Yes, that was one of the many, many news coming out of Italy lately - along with the new end-of-life law that makes your living will not binding for the doctor attending you, and the introduction of citizen militias as legal helper of the police, and the funding thereof while the police funds are being cut, and the dismantling of the incredibly good primary school system, and the dismantling of the independence of the Judiciary, and I could go on, that made me go "la la la, not hearing you, nothing that concerns me, not my country any more, la la la". Also I begged my parents to move to London, but of course, they are old and don't speak the language and it is not really a realistic proposal.

#22 ::: Daniel Klein ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 05:07 AM:

Speaking with my Italian friends here at work, he suggested that Berlusconi carefully constructed this clownish exterior to make himself seem less sinister and obviously evil to the people. After all, isn't it better to be ruled by a clown that you can laugh at than by a Machiavellian manipulator who pulls all the strings? I remember similar things being said about W, but from what I can tell, he was actually that dumb.

At any rate, yes, what 20 and 21 have been saying. The Italians I work with are living here in Ireland for a reason. They too used to apologize whenever Berlusconi opened his mouth, but they've now transitioned to a sort of gallow's humour. Yeah, that's what he does, yeah, our country's going to hell, what can you do.

#23 ::: Anna Feruglio Dal Dan ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 06:26 AM:

No, I don't think he does it on purpose. I think he is so narcissistic - and so out of touch with reality outside the bubble of the yes-men culture he created - that he actually believes himself to be charming, funny and beloved of all. Berlusconi is a seriously fucked-up human being, not that this is any excuse.

There are two kinds of gaffes he makes: one is the one where he simply badly misjudges the moment. When he says that women "should marry a rich guy like my son" people want to kick him because they know it's not that fucking easy, and you don't need to pick up on the sexist side of it to be pissed off.

The other one is where he shows the kind of person he really is: an conservative old man rooted in the sexist, wink-wink nudge-nudge, we're all lads here, unconscious racist in a "they have rhythm in their bones you know" culture of provincial social conservative places. It's the kind of person who lives a perfectly contented life within the status quo not because he's evil, but because he doesn't have the imagination and empathy to understand how it feels like for others.

There are people in his entourage that are much more personally evil than he is. His lawyer, and one of this best friends, literally swindled his fifteen year old ward out of her inheritance. The xenophobic thugs he dragged into power with him got him to pass a law that makes it mandatory for doctors to rat out illegal immigrants in their care, and so on. Berlusconi is not like that. He is just unable to see the problem. It's not that he gloats in seeing people kicked out of the country and back into abject misery because they had to present to an ER (like plenty of others do): if he was forced to confront the problem, something he seldom has to do in his bubble of denial, he would probably write them a cheque for a million euro so that they can live well and think that he's solved the problem like that.

It's not that he glories in seeing women humiliated: when he says that people should come to Italy because we have "gorgeous secretaries" he probably thinks that, since all the gorgeous women he has around him fawn on him, there is nothing wrong in having young good-looking things about you - after all, they are happy to be there, aren't they?

This is not stupidity, and it is not simple evil. It is just impossible for him to put himself in other people's shoes. The whole universe revolves around him, and he is munificent and good willed, so that everybody else's problems only exist in relation to him. He is utterly unable to understand why people would criticise him. The only reason he can see for this is that they are evil people who want bad things, since he knows he is a good person who wants good things.

I read once this incident regarding Berlusconi: a woman was browsing an antique shop, and in particular admiring a lamp that was far too expensive for her, when he and his entourage walked in. He bought this, that and the other, and as he was concluding the deal, without even having exchanged a glance with the woman, he told the cashier, "Oh, and give that lamp that the lady is admiring to her and put it on my tab." He probably thought he was generous, and in a sense he was: the woman found it chilling, and so did I. Also very sad.

He is not a sophisticated man, is Berlusconi. He is not intelligent as such. He is, however, not a stupid man either. He's shrewd, he's cunning, and of course, the fact that he has such a weird moral sense allowed him to get enormously rich by doing things even corrupt people would not do. He got his first break, of course, by laundering Mafia money, but what always struck me as outrageous was that he charged his fellow students money to make their homework for them.

Now - you have to understand how Italian culture differs from American culture here. In the US, you compete with your class to get the best grade. In Italy, if you are smart you are supposed to help your fellow students cheat, because the class is your family and you are supposed to help them out. There is enormous peer pressure, and legendary sleigh-of-hands, involved in "passing" written test to your classmates (this is why you are never graded on work you do at home, and all grades are for written or oral examinations that happen in class).

Asking *money* for this is like showing up at a dinner party, handing over a bottle of wine and saying "That'll be ten pounds, if you don't mind".

The even more amazing thing, for me, is that I learned of this factoid not from his opponents, but from the glossy booklet about his life that he had delivered to every Italian family back when he first ran for office. He saw nothing wrong with it.

(BTW, at the tail end of WWII, right about the time my grandfather was on the run from the fascist with the Resistance books, and my uncles were variously in internment camps, with the partisans, or in jail having refused to enrol, Berlusconi's dad crossed over to Switzerland where the only hardship he had to face was to be away from his family. Berlusconi put this in his booklet, too.)

#24 ::: Dave Bell ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 07:41 AM:

If I need a specific villain in the stuff I'm writing, Berlusconi would be a good model for the sort I can use. And he never does his own dirty work.

(This is, I suppose, one of the reasons for conspiracy theories: the big man is never linked directly to the oddity.)

The heroes, on the other hand, aren't the sort who just scarper across the border. If they do, they'll be back.

Look, I don't know why I called a skunk Alberto Gonzales, and made him one of the good guys. But he is. Take my word for it. Even if he is an anarchist, just like his daddy.

#25 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 09:07 AM:
Greet Scouts
Lumber Union - Reschedule
Call Temp Agency
Become Invincible
Meeting with PTA
Haircut
#26 ::: Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 11:59 AM:

Anna @ 23

It's hard for me to talk about Berluscone without invoking Godwin's Law; so I'll restrict myself to saying:
  Shorter Berlusconi: emotional development of a 3 year old child.

I'd also like to point out that he would disgust Ernst Blofeld, but that Donald Westlake would probably have delighted in using him in a very bent spy story. Pity he couldn't be a fictional character himself.

#27 ::: David Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 01:20 PM:

Anna @#23: As noted many times here, no-one's evil in their own mind. This guy fits Peck's People Of The Lie to a T. He is indeed evil.

#28 ::: pericat ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 01:39 PM:

Teresa @25 and here I thunk that show was fiction.

#29 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 01:41 PM:

Bruce Cohen @ 26... Ernst Stavro Blofeld, yes. But would he disgust Doctor Evil? And whosever is in charge of THRUSH or KAOS? (Somewhere there is an evil communist organization called FRED - 'Fierce Revolutionary Enemies of Democracy'.)

#30 ::: Raphael ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 01:52 PM:

Anna Feruglio Dal Dan @20, To his credit, he also never actually tortured or killed people.

AFAIK he did make it easier for others to do that, though.

David Harmon @27, As noted many times here, no-one's evil in their own mind.

I think some people come pretty close- mainly those that do various more or less evil things and take great pride in the fact that they're not too "weak" or "soft" to do them.

#31 ::: James D. Macdonald ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 02:01 PM:

You'll be happy to know that the wingnuts used Berlusconi as proof that George Bush was the Best President Ever, since the Europeans were voting in people like Bush as their heads of state.

#32 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 02:41 PM:

Serge @29: IIRC, The Technological Heirarchy for the Removal of Undesirables and the Subjugation of Humanity was composed of satraps whose heads formed the ruling council of said organization, so there was no single "strong man" there.

#33 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 02:47 PM:

Lori Coulson @ 32... What about Anthony Zerbe in 1983's TV movie?

#34 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 04:57 PM:

Serge, it pains me to admit that it's been so long since I've seen the 1983 TV movie, I'd forgotten about Zerbe. I'm going on what I remember of THRUSH's organization from the U.N.C.L.E. books...

#35 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 05:43 PM:

Anna@23: Do you know Damon Knight's story "Rule Golden"? Sounds like Berlusconi could use a dose of that gas.

And the stunt with the class sounds like something Newt Gingrich would pull.

wrt Raphael's extraction from Anna@20: in some people's books that would make him a coward, on top of his other faults. cf "Call Him Lord", which I never thought I'd be holding up as a good example.

#36 ::: Marilee ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 06:41 PM:

Serge, #10, how many of the Pollyanna books have you read? By the third one (first grownup book), she's having traditional new marriage problems.

#37 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: April 09, 2009, 07:34 PM:

Marilee @ 36... I confess that my knowledge of Pollyanna is limited to Disney's movie. Are you suggesting that the latter might have watered things down a bit? I am shocked. Shocked!

#38 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2009, 01:41 AM:

Marilee, I'm astonished to learn there was a series of Pollyanna books. I'm with Serge; all I remember is Hayley Mills as the eternal optimist.

#39 ::: Gag Halfrunt ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2009, 06:29 AM:

There's an opinion piece in today's Guardian about Berlusconi's control of the Italian media.

Berlusconi the blunderer is news abroad, not at home. The astonishing trail of antics and misdemeanours that Berlusconi blazed across Europe as he hopelessly tried to squeeze into the limelight of Barack Obama left the rest of the world gawping and most Italians apparently resigned. It's an old story, which may puzzle outsiders but not anyone familiar with the Italian media.

Trouble usually starts when Berlusconi ventures abroad. In Moscow at the end of last year, he hailed then president-elect Obama as "handsome, young and suntanned". (Speaking for the many Italians who cringed, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy said she was glad she was no longer an Italian citizen.) Back in 2003, during a debate at the European parliament in Strasbourg, he called a German MEP "kapo", as the guards in Nazi concentration camps were called, and said he would put him forward for a part in a film about the camps. In the same year he attempted to charm investors in New York with the line: "Another reason to invest in Italy is that we have beautiful secretaries." The list goes on.
At home, however, Berlusconi's image and public appearances are minutely managed. He chooses questions, his staff plan every outing and appearance, cameras are positioned at what he and his aides consider flattering angles. Remember, half the journalists in Italy work for him and the other half know they might do so one day.
#40 ::: y ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2009, 11:15 AM:

It's not quite that bad--remember the time his wife wrote an open letter to La Repubblica? It's not like Italians don't know that Berlusconi is a buffoon. I think many of them are just worn down. I used to think that Americans were cynical about politics--until I started talking to Italians about it.

#41 ::: FrancisT ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2009, 11:24 AM:

Gag @ 39: Honesty forces me to say that I actually found the Kapo one amusing and quite possibly accurate. Yes it was undiplomatic as hell but Martin Schulz really is a weasel of the highest order.

Giacomo, Anna and others in Italy @18, 20 etc.: What blows me away time and again is how no politician in Italy ever manages to do anything useful. In the North they mostly seem to route around the politicians and ignore them (and the government), in the south they bribe and get kickbacks from them. In neither part do the politicians seem to do anything that would actually reform the Italian state which is crumbling in a way that makes US mortgage CDOs look secure.

As far as I can tell a fair chunk of Italians voted for his group simply because they felt that his inability to do anything was better than the likely active damage that the other group was doing/planning on. To me this seems pretty standard Italian WTF behavior.

I love visiting Italy. I love the food. The wine. The hospitality. Not to mention the wonderful scenery, culture etc. BUT every visit pretty much I find somethign that makes me go WTF were they thinking? Take the Rome Marathon last month. 90% organized perfectly but maybe a little thought about portapotties would have been good. There were 15,000 bladders at the start and about 20 portapotties. Most of the men therefore peed through the railings onto the forum. I hope it rained a couple of days later because that area must have REEKED otherwise (picture). Oh and they forgot to tell anyone where the Pasta party was the night before so I don't think anyone showed up.

#42 ::: Raphael ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2009, 01:14 PM:

As far as I can tell a fair chunk of Italians voted for his group simply because they felt that his inability to do anything was better than the likely active damage that the other group was doing/planning on.

I don't see how Berlusconi is unable to do anything. He seems to have been pretty succesful, or at least tried to be pretty succesful, at sabotaging the parts of the Italian state that used to function relatively well (note the word "relatively"). For instance, during each of his terms in office, it apparently became a bit more difficult for the Italian justice system to convict people. (I think I recall a case where the trial of a group of suspected child molesters had to be called of because part of the evidence had been supplied by foreign law enforcement agencies (how many major child molestation trials are there these days where that isn't the case?) and Berlusconi had gotten a law passed that excluded all evidence collected by foreign governments from criminal procedings (in order to to avoid being convicted on various white collar charges himself).) And then there's the stuff mentioned by Anna at 21.

#43 ::: Marilee ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2009, 04:51 PM:

Serge, #37, and Linkmeister, #38, there were 10 books. The last one has her children as adults. I'd read the books before I saw the movie and the movie was pretty drippy. Now, the first book does have her trying to be glad (it's the Glad Books series), which is where the "Pollyanna" expression comes about. But her folks are dead and she has to move in with a dreadful aunt so she's just trying to keep from despair. The same sort of theme is in the other books, but as she grows older, gets married, and rears their kids.

#44 ::: Roy G. Ovrebo ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2009, 06:51 PM:

Jim MacDonald @ 31: You'll be happy to know that the wingnuts used Berlusconi as proof that George Bush was the Best President Ever, since the Europeans were voting in people like Bush as their heads of state.

I remember when Bush got electedbecame president, Christian conservatives in Norway hailed it as a new dawn for Christianity and social conservatism. Let me just say that it didn't go as they wanted.

#45 ::: Kip W ::: (view all by) ::: April 10, 2009, 11:37 PM:

I swear I heard this same thing -- if not the exact wording -- from some American official after one of our disasters. It's not 'happy campers' I'm thinking of here, it was somebody doing the happy talk thing about pretending the tents they had to hole up in were some kind of jolly weekend excursion. Maybe they're all just repeating dialog from some bad movie.

#46 ::: Anna Feruglio Dal Dan ::: (view all by) ::: April 18, 2009, 08:09 PM:

@FrancisT 41: Hmmm, well, no. No, you do not hurl an accusation of being a Kapo to a German in Europe. It's something you-just-don't-do. It would be like accusing somebody in the US of being a member of the KKK and then adding, "only joking". No. That's not something you joke about.

Also, the idea that "no politician ever manages to do anything useful" is a little superficial. This is untrue in Italy as it is everywhere else. We have had plenty of good, effective politicians.

For example, Zamberletti created a very efficient Civil Protection department; Ciampi managed to get our books in order and get into the Eurozone; Tina Merlin gave us a civilized law on prostitution; Bersani reformed the workings of the bureaucracy greatly improving them. Yes, our political culture and our sociology makes us more vulnerable than others to bad politicians, but there are actually quite a lot of things in Italy that work surprisingly well. That's one of the things with Italy - just when you think there is no hope for it, it surprises you by doing something extremely well.

The view of Northerners as good workers and Southerners as given to kickback and bribery is also false and libelous. I can tell you, having lived in the far North and the deep South, that there is plenty of bribery and kickback in austere Friuli and backbreaking honesty in Sicily.

Italy is more than halfway rotten, but please don't go around using stereotyping and facile generalization to dismiss what is actually a fairly complex country.

#47 ::: Springtime for Spacers ::: (view all by) ::: April 29, 2009, 06:17 PM:

Anna Feruglio Dal Dan's posts. particularly #23 put me in mind of this:

Epitaph on a Tyrant
by W. H. Auden


Perfection, of a kind, was what he was after,
And the poetry he invented was easy to understand;
He knew human folly like the back of his hand,
And was greatly interested in armies and fleets;
When he laughed, respectable senators burst with laughter,
And when he cried the little children died in the streets.

#48 ::: Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: May 04, 2009, 07:02 PM:

And he emits more sounds: Berlusconi demands public apology from his wife

ROME — A peeved Premier Silvio Berlusconi has demanded a public apology from his wife, who announced she was seeking a divorce from the billionaire media magnate because she was fed up with his roving eye for younger women.

Going on the counterattack, the 72-year-old, perma-tanned conservative premier, who in recent years has had hair transplants and plastic surgery around the eyes, appeared more intent on saving his wounded pride than his foundering marriage.

"Veronica will have to publicly apologize to me. And I don't know if that will be enough," the Corriere della Sera daily on Monday quoted Berlusconi as saying in a long chat with its editor-in-chief.

Veronica Lario, a 52-year-old former actress, confirmed Sunday she wants a divorce from her husband just a week after publicly venting her rage over Berlusconi's frequent flirtations.

Yep, looks like it won't be enough.

#49 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: May 04, 2009, 08:18 PM:

Terry Karney #48: Apparently Berlusconi is the Italian word for "fuvg".

#50 ::: Earl Cooley III ::: (view all by) ::: May 04, 2009, 09:14 PM:

I wonder what Italian community property laws are like?

#51 ::: Rob Rusick thinks #51 is spam ::: (view all by) ::: September 22, 2011, 04:35 AM:

Only one post under 'view all by', unlikely name linked to some website...

#52 ::: SamChevre spots more Spam ::: (view all by) ::: October 14, 2011, 02:01 PM:

Spammers, spammers
Make me wish for spanners.

#53 ::: praisegod barebones ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2012, 01:22 PM:

Why isnt the movie SPICE WORLD on this list? It doesnt get much scarier than that!

Some things Berlusconi is thankfully not responsible for...

#54 ::: Cally Soukup ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2012, 05:06 PM:

Tom, are you sure? The View All By looks like pb's.

Or do you mean that there was spam before pb's post, and so pb has moved into the #55 position?

#55 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2012, 06:11 PM:

Cally (57): He means the latter; there was a spam post, now gone, at #55.

#56 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2012, 06:27 PM:

Yes; thanks, Mary Aileen!

#57 ::: Stefan Jones sees spam ::: (view all by) ::: February 12, 2012, 11:09 PM:

Oh, yeah, right. Utter website!

#58 ::: Stefan Jones sees spam ::: (view all by) ::: March 28, 2012, 12:50 AM:

Die, spammer, die!

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