Epochal Change...More of the Same

Charles Payne
Posted: Feb 27, 2013 12:01 AM
You show us everything you've got
You keep on dancin' and the room gets hot
You drive us wild, we'll drive you crazy
You say you wanna go for a spin
The party's just begun, we'll let you in
You drive us wild, we'll drive you crazy
You keep on shoutin', you keep on shoutin'

I wanna rock and roll all night and party every day

Well the Italian election was a mess and everyone was surprised! Since the end of World War II, Italy has see 41 Prime Ministers with the average length in office about a year when you don't add Silvio Berlusconi. II Calaiere (the Knight) is perhaps the most colorful politician in the world, living a life void of politically correct restraint that has seen him become rich, powerful and hated but maybe irresistible as well.

This guy rocks and rolls all night and parties throughout the day and he is partying today as the financial world nurses a headache.

The financial world is upset because an austerity plan was rejected but that's not so bad considering what one assumes is austerity. In Europe, it has largely been tax hikes instead of slower spending and a dramatic decrease in promises to workers. I've always liked that Berlusconi was a pro-business guy and the support of the Northern League has been a positive sign as a resistance to a welfare society. So, I'm not sure what he stands for right now. I do know the markets are upset as it felt like Italy was on its way toward something akin to responsibility.

Yet the candidate that represented reasonability, Mario Monti, only fetched 9% of the vote - a month ago many thought he could win this thing in a walk. Heck, the clown Grillo came out a bigger winner and his platform is also ambiguous but something about being non-traditional. One of Grillo's supporters told a reporter there was epochal change happening and my first thought was that statement was a million miles from reality. The fact is the deeper people become attached to goodies the harder it is to wean them off. Moreover, the Italian vote underscores the extent economic and mental depressions go hand in hand. Turnout was the lowest since WWII, pointing to a kind of apathy and surrender.

Italy is in need of a real leader. Someone with the flair for life of Berlusconi but that really cares about breaking the right rules and rekindling former glory.