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Monti’s Quip Riles the Berlusconi Brethren

Oh dear. Italy’s Prime Minister Mario Monti hinted that had the Silvio Berlusconi led government still been in power in Italy, the dreaded spread would be at 1,200 points by now.

Monti made this little comment to the Wall Street Journal in an interview.

Berlusconi’s people did not take kindly to the insinuation that the government lead by the tanned billionaire with a taste for bunga bunga soirees was, er, incompetent, took umbrage and even abandoned Italy’s senate during several votes today.

While Silvio Berlusconi is allowed to tell all the jokes he likes, others are not appreciated when they tell jokes, if it was one, at the expense of the mighty Silvio, even if Berlusconi did leave Italy in one almighty mess economically.

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Having rubbed the sensitive Berlusconi brethren the wrong way, Mario Monti is now trying to extricate himself from his little pickle.  Indeed, Monti did actually telephone Silvio Berlusconi to say he was sorry.  The damage, to Silvio Berlusconi and his party, has been done though.  And to be fair to Mario Monti, he has had to face quite a few digs from the Berlusconi camp.

A case of sweet revenge on the part of Mario Monti?  Maybe.  Two can play at the slagging off game, and Monti won’t have to try too hard to criticize Silvio Berlusconi’s (mis) management of Italy.

So far though, and unlike his predecessor, Monti has not claimed he was joking.  Maybe he should, after all, it worked for Silvio, sort of.

Perhaps, with hindsight, Monti’s timing could have been a little better.  Mario Monti still needs the support of Berlusconi’s gang to finish his non-elected term of office.  However, it sounds as if Monti is sending a message to those outside Italy – namely Germany – that the Berlusconi period is over and will not be repeated.

Italian politics is always a hoot, even if the Boot seems to be going down the shoot 😉

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