Ah Silvio, never change or, if possible, resign: the comedic world of Italian politics will never be the same without you. The latest soundbite by the billionaire with a penchant for easy, underage women comes by way of an interview conducted by Italian television journalist Bruno Vespa for his latest book, and summarized by Reuters. To wit: "Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi said his children feel persecuted just as Jewish families did in Nazi Germany because he is being hounded by the country's magistrates who want to eliminate him politically."
Could it be that poor Silvio is only just now realizing how the game of politics is played, and that a country's "justice" only works in your favor when the judges get an envelope full of cash the day of. Now that Berluconi's political star has finally set, and the state is dismantling the media magnate's empire bit by bit, and the probability of such future envelopes is far less, Silvio is finally learning what it means to be on the other side of the "law?" As for Silvio's privileged children: well they can just take their private jet and move to a country where they are not quite as persecuted - a privilege Jewish families during Nazi Germany hardly had.
Replying to a question about whether his five children had asked him to sell his media empire and leave Italy to escape his legal troubles, Berlusconi said: "My children say that they feel like Jewish families in Germany under Hitler's regime. Truly, everyone is against us."
Berlusconi, who protests his innocence in a series of court cases which he blames on left-wing magistrates, is well-known for making controversial remarks, such as calling President Barack Obama "suntanned" after he was first elected in 2008.
During a heated 2003 exchange in the European Parliament, Berlusconi compared Martin Schulz, a German Social Democrat who is now president of the assembly, to a Nazi concentration camp guard.
Berlusconi, 77, and his family rank among the 200 wealthiest billionaires in the world, with an estimated fortune of 6.2 billion euros ($8.35 billion) according to Forbes magazine.
His conviction for tax fraud earlier this year poses a serious threat to his decades-long political career because it comes with a ban from public office, though polls show millions of Italians would still vote for him.
Berlusconi is also on trial on charges of having paid for sex with a minor and then abusing the powers of his office to have her released from jail after she was arrested for theft.
The irony in all of this is that Berlusconi is a saint compared to the average US politician. However, as long as the Bernanke welfare-enabling machine works, the danger of any US bought and paid for beltway muppet of Wall Street suffering the same, or worse, "persecution" is hardly worth discussing.