As Silvio Berlusconi, the man with the winning smile, seeks re-election, or so the rumor goes, and it has not been denied yet, it seems fitting to remind everyone just how many lies Italy’s former Prime Minister has told during part of his somewhat scandal-ridden political career.
Indeed, Berlusconi has told so many fibs, made so many hollow promises, and contradicted himself with such remarkable regularity, that two Italians managed to find enough material to write a whole book on the subject. A catalog of lies, if ever there was one.
The book, endearing entitled Le Mille Balle Blu, which translates as The Thousand Blue Balls, incidentally – “balle” in Italian is a slang, slightly vulgar term for lies – was written quite a number of years ago, way back in 2006 by Marco Travaglio and Peter Gomez, both of whom are Italian journalists and writers. Neither are huge Berlusconi fans, it has to be said.
Aside from the list of Berlusconi’s lies and tall tales, there is a bonus section on all the leggi-vergogna – shameful laws – approved by Silvio Berlusconi’s governments.
Whether or not the Berlusconi faithful have come up with One Thousand Truths, I do not know, but I’ll publish a link if someone tells me where one is on Amazon.
The Most Sincere Liar Ever?
Also within the book, the authors’ remind readers that noted Italian journalist, the late Indro Montanell, described Silvio Berlusconi add the “most sincere liar that ever existed”. Montanelli went on to say that Berlusconi, aside from believing all he says, is allergic to the truth.
Berlusconi is Still Bending the Truth
Recently, Italy has been experiencing Berlusconi twisting and contorting the truth once more. Today, after he said in an interview to German tabloid Bild that he was to name his PdL party Forza Italia, which is what he called his party before it became the Popolo della Libertà, Berlusconi later said that it was not his intention to actually rename his party, but that he was toying with ideas. Amusingly, Berlusconi forgot to tell his family newspaper, Il Giornale, which had obediently run an edition with a headline reporting that the PdL was to become Forza Italia.
Berlusconi is Still Joking
Another suggestion made by Berlusconi was to save the Euro by printing more money. The tanned supremo with an insatiable taste for nubile young ladies, which is probably what distracted him, then issued a statement saying he was joking.
Berlusconi jokes (0r lies?) so much, it is virtually impossible to tell when he is not telling a funny story. Maybe the fact that he is seeking re-election is nothing more than an elaborate gag? If so, his successor in waiting, the subservient Angelino Alfano, would probably like to be told, because he’s running around telling everyone that Berlusconi is back.
Silvio Berlusconi is the master of retraction. If there were ever to be a university degree on the subject, he’d get a first.
Would You Vote for a Pathological Liar?
Joking aside, who in their right minds would vote for a person who appears to be a pathological liar? Berlusconi says around 30% of Italians might. Maybe he was lying? It wouldn’t be the first time, by the sounds of things.
If you Read Italian
For those who read Italian, the list of Berlusconi’s lies and other truth twisting – Le Mille Balle Blu can be found on Amazon.com, and there is a Kindle edition too:
Don’t worry those of you who hail from the United Kingdom and read Italian, Le Mille Balle Blu is also available from Amazon.co.uk.
I have no idea how many Italians have read this book about Berlusconi, but before voting him into power one more time, and then regretting it, perhaps they should read this book.
Maybe volume two is about to hit the printing presses? There should be no shortage of material, as Berlusconi came up with more than a few porkie pies between 2006 and when he was moved over to make way for the more professional Mario Monti. The task of sorting out Italy’s many woes is proving a tough one for Monti, in part because Silvio Berlusconi left Italy in one heck of a mess.
As Silvio handed over the reins to Mario, he probably uttered, smiling his charming smile: “You’ll be fine, Mario, I’ve left everything in perfect order. Promise”.
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