Sonntag, 11.04.2021 14:40 Uhr

Italy: a country loved, envied but also often derided.

Verantwortlicher Autor: Maurizio Monge Turin, 17.05.2020, 20:43 Uhr
Presse-Ressort von: Kunst, Kultur und Musik Bericht 8276x gelesen
Italy: Beautiful Country
Italy: Beautiful Country  Bild: Maurizio Monge

Turin [ENA] There is no doubt that Italy is a country loved by the whole world: the culture, the landscape beauties, the style, the imagination that characterize the Italians, a thousand-year history, these are just some of the aspects that make the world say that we live in the "beautiful country".

Unfortunately, the personal character of the Italians, often submissive, docile, never too "sanguine" has not always produced representatives worthy of their role. I traveled the world, in my life, for work and too often I found myself having to explain to foreigners, lovers like me of Italy, some incomprehensible characteristics, paradoxes, absurdities that in our country are accepted with passivity but that abroad they are looked at with suspicion and are often the object, understandably, of hilarity and derision. The coronavirus crisis, the decisions made or rather "not made" by the government on this occasion, have heightened these negative characteristics, creating confusion and also increasingly protests by the population.

The so-called "phase 2" began in the worst way: total confusion about the rules and above all poor uniformity of behavior within the nation. We basked for days on the definition of "relatives" and on what the definition of "stable affects" meant. The government has promised aid, "firepower" to resolve the huge crisis that is gripping the Italian economy and everything has been reduced to complex measures, impractical and, in most cases, of no help. The regions and municipalities have started to protest: all to compete on who opens first certain activities; bars and restaurants should remain closed until June 1st but in Calabria they have already opened, in other regions work started on Monday 11 May, in others Monday 18.

The beaches of the Adriatic coast should be open to individual walks and always keeping social distancing: in the Marche we have two neighboring municipalities that have made opposite decisions: in Falconara you can go to the beach, in Ancona instead you can't. It is a pity that the beach is the same and that therefore the strollers find themselves halfway up the water with the sign forbidding entry to the next section, under penalty of a salty fine. In Milan, the Navigli were stormed by young people; what could they think they did after 2 months of lockdown? The angry mayor threatened new closings.

Travel between regions is prohibited, but allowed if you go to visit family members. In the second houses you cannot go but you can go for cleaning and renovation of the houses themselves. I can't go to visit friends but you can meet them at the park while maintaining social distancing. You cannot go on horseback but in Abruzzo you can. According to the latest rumors, restaurants will have to provide 4 meters between one table and another: practically in some of them there will be only one table.

On the beach 2 meters horizontal distance between the umbrellas and 5 meters between one row and the other: in Liguria the beach often has a width of 15 meters, of which 5 are reserved for walking and cannot be used for umbrellas; so ... just 2 files! Stuff to close most of the bathing establishments. You can fish in some regions and in others not. If the boat enters the waters of a region where the prohibition is in force, they will make a strong penalty. In short, a complete chaos! Going to explain it to foreigners is difficult and even more difficult is to think that they can understand.

I remember that I tried, some time ago, to list some of our "oddities" to people who live on the other side of the world: they didn't believe me; they thought you wanted to tell them a joke. And yet ... it's the sad reality. The tax problem, for example, is the most absurd, extravagant and complex thing in Italy. For heaven's sake: after seeing that in Uganda 5 euro cents a day are paid to use social media and that in Venezuela airport passengers pay the "breath tax" to contribute to the costs of air filtering, which in Romania pay the "witchcraft" tax and that in America taxes are also paid on thefts and bribes ... we can say we are in good company!

But ... we are neither Uganda nor Venezuela and certain taxes that the state imposes on us are nothing short of incredible. How to explain to a foreigner that in the "beautiful country" shopkeepers not only pay the tax on "public land" for tables outside the restaurant but are also forced to pay the famous "tax on the shade" for the curtains that repair the tables from the sun. How to make an unsuspecting tourist understand that the cost of our fuels, among the highest in Europe especially in relation to the per capita income and the purchasing power of our currency, is not so high for the cost of crude oil but for the set of taxes that the state applies to us. The main problem is the type of taxes that are imposed on petrol.

there are 17 excise duties on fuel, to which the 22% VAT must be added. It is therefore a tax on taxes! Here, just to clarify the ideas, the complete list with the year in which it was applied: 1. € 0.00098 : funding for the Ethiopian war (1935-1936) 2. € 0.00723: financing the Suez crisis (1956) 3. € 0.00516: reconstruction after the Vajont disaster (1963) 4. € 0.00516: reconstruction after the Florence flood (1966) 5. € 0.00516: reconstruction after the Belice earthquake (1968) 6. € 0.0511: reconstruction after the Friuli earthquake (1976) 7. € 0.0387: reconstruction after the Irpinia earthquake (1980) 8. € 0.106: financing for the Lebanon war (1983) 9. € 0.0114: funding for the mission in Bosnia (1996)

10. € 0.02: renewal of the road haulage contract (2004) 11. € 0.005: purchase of ecological buses (2005) 12. € 0.0051: L'Aquila earthquake (2009) 13. from 0.0071 to 0.0055 euro: financing for culture (2011) 14. € 0.04: immigrant emergency after the Libyan crisis (2011) 15. € 0.0089: flood in Liguria and Tuscany (2011) 16. € 0.082 (0.113 on diesel): decree "Save Italy" (2011) 17. € 0.02: earthquake in Emilia (2012)

What to say? We are a strange but beautiful country. The pandemic has, as mentioned, accentuated the crisis that has affected our population for years but, as the signs say that since the start of the lockdown they have been exposed in many balconies of our cities, we need not worry: "Everything will be fine"!

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