Super Mario and Technocracy
As our readers know, we gave Berlusconi a maximum of two years before he would be back. With austerity hitting Europe, Italians are not as fond of Super Mario as they used to be. Is this opening up for Berlusconi for aproper come back, this time having enjoyed the time off, while the rest have been struggling. From Bloomberg.
When Mario Monti was appointed — not elected — prime minister of Italy in November, most Italians saw him as a welcome respite from the flamboyant, bankrupt leadership of Silvio Berlusconi. With the economy headed for collapse, technocratic leadership and a break from politics as usual were exactly what they wanted. So they thought.
Now, opinion polls put Monti’s approval rating at slightly more than 30 percent, down from more than 70 percent at the start of his tenure. The country’s media are disenchanted. Monti has failed to produce the miracle that Italy was hoping for, offering only painful remedies for years of misgovernment. It turns out that politics matter, and technocrats aren’t much good at politics.
Monti, an academic and former top European Union civil servant, has lived up to his reputation for getting things done. “Super Mario,” as the press called him, quickly appointed a team of fellow policy professionals, announced long-overdue austerity measures including tax increases and cuts in pensions, and proposed significant reform of Italy’s arcane labor laws.
Full article here.