Italy Announces Austerity Plan 2.0 As Local Protests Spread, Turn Violent

Tyler Durden's picture

After Berlusconi was scolded by everyone, but most importantly by backstop solvency provider ECB, for his bull in a China shop maneuver of the first, now defunct, Italian Austerity plan, here are the details from the next, soon to be gutted "Austerity", which readers may be forgiven, if they take it with just a grain of salt. According to Bloomberg, the details are as follows:

  • Plan to to include higher retirement age for women from 2014
  • To add 3% tax on income over 500k euros
  • Italy to approve constitutional law for budget balance Sept
  • To increase VAT from 20% to 21%.

Will anyone take this latest attempt to appease the ECB seriously? Of course not.

In the meantime, Italy, as predicted - remember Piazza Navona strikecam and all that, and especially its workers, are not happy as protests proceed to engulf the country:

Protesters in Italy scuffled with police, burned flags and threw eggs and smoke bombs at banks on Tuesday in what they said could be a taste of escalating public disorder as public spending cuts bring pain to families.


Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is scrambling to enact deep cuts to prevent a Greek-style financial collapse. Protesters said this could lead to unrest like that seen on the streets of other austerity-hit European countries.


Tens of thousands of striking workers, students and pensioners joined marches in cities from Palermo to Turin, voicing opposition to the proposed 45.5 billion euro austerity package and discontent with Berlusconi's government.


"This is the first step of a crucial autumn, it is the chance our generation has to fight back," said 33-year-old Enrico Sitta at a march in Rome.


Protests in Italy have not reached the scale of mass demonstrations in Spain by groups known as the "indignados," or mass rallies at Syntagma Square in Athens that sparked violent clashes. But some in Rome expect popular anger to intensify if pressure on struggling households continues.


Italy's biggest union CGIL called Tuesday's strike against the austerity plan presented last month by Berlusconi's government, aimed at balancing the budget by 2013.


Many protesters voiced personal reasons for anger.


Italian workers, who already earn some of the lowest salaries in western Europe, have seen wages stagnate while consumer prices shoot up and are furious at having to shoulder further burdens in the government's austerity plan.


Italy has already introduced delays to retirement and freezes on state salaries as part of previous austerity measures. A plan in the latest package would withhold the retirement funds of public sector employees for two years after leaving their jobs.


Industrial worker Claudio Bargilli, 47, called the proposed cuts "a social massacre."


"The government is presenting cuts upon cuts, and we can't make it to the end of the month," he said, adding that he and his colleagues were already close to the poverty line, surviving on an income of 1,000 euros a month.    

We give Berlusconi's government at most 3 months. Countdown starts now.

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vast-dom's picture

The VAT tax, being essentially regressive and punative, is a major blunder. That point just added inordinate amount of fuel to what was already raging fire IMNSHO. 


BaBaBouy's picture

Taxes Are Horrendous In Europe ...


And its getting worse.

While the Elites live in the lap of luxury...

BaBaBouy's picture

This AUSTERITY SHIT didn't work in Greece (disaster),

why would it work in any other EU State ???


Stupid fecks...

Global Hunter's picture

That would make a great ZH avatar for somebody, alas I am obliged to keep my black liva bird (swan).

Ancona's picture

Shut up and eat your fucking cake, before I call out the riot police and water cannons. We will have austerity, and you will like it.

Pizza spaghetti and mandolino's picture

Riot police ? Water cannons ? "Escalating public disorder" in Italy? Are you sure ?

Do you really still believe the Reuters and all that mainstream news agencies ?

Do you really believe that Gaddafi bombed peaceful demonstrators making 10'000 casualties with cluster bombs as the BBC and Al Jazeera reported ? Do you really believe that this was the reason for the UN resolution and then war in Libya ?

If so, you well deserve Reuters and the like.

No Italian news agency written in Italian dares writing of "escalating public disorder" because anyone who was there today in Italy would immediately ridiculate it.


By reporting from Reuters what is going down the drain is the credibility not of the Italian BTPs but of zerohedge and of Tyler Durden. Ridiculous, it is the only word !!!

In terms of public order what you had today in Italy was a minority strike with peaceful demonstrations.  More precisely, minority meansa a tiny fraction of the Italian workers.


DogSlime's picture

I don't know about Italy, but I believe the BBC reports on the UK riots because I live here.  There were definitely riots.  My ex girlfriend lives in London and I am just north of Manchester - definitely, definitely riots.

Maybe they are over-stating the Italy problem, but the UK problem was real.

Pizza spaghetti and mandolino's picture

BBC reported about cluster bombs used by Gaddafi troops in Lybia (not in Italy !!) killing many people (before the UN resolution 1973). Gaddafi's son answer (that mainstream media never reported) was: we are neither criminals nor idiots. About the Gaddafi regime not being criminal iit s a different matter. About them not neing idiots, he had a very strong point: cluster bombs leave very clear signs that BBC wasn't able to show. The Gaddafi government brought the journalists to the place where according to BBC cluster bombs had been used and their signs simply weren't there.

As for Manchester and London I don't doubt that there were riots but, well, there in the UK people speak English. Blatant inaccuracy there wouldn't be possible.

There is a clear spin in the news about today's strike in Italy by Reuters.

The shame is not on Reuters (poor paid liars) but on zerohedge for falling into the trap of the information spin doctors.

Ghordius's picture

Ah, Italy!

What wonderful memories!

I remember once a "Rally against Berlusconi" some years ago, they were news with footage of THREE FREAKING MILLIONS ITALIANS demonstrating in Rome against his Gov.

All the media were dead sure his time was over...

And the "Riots against Globalism" in Genua? Ah, those were violent young men...

My friend, whatever happens in Italy stays there, leave the truth to Murdoch's boys, they know how to spin and milk...

dwdollar's picture

This shit has been going on for thousands of years.  It has 1 of 3 possible outcomes.  Dark age of oppression, failed civil war followed by a dark age of oppression, or successful revolution.

anony's picture

One other: Entropy.

That's about as far as the american people will take it. An ongoing adpatation to less and less has been going on in variouis precincts around the country for 30 years.  It's just that those are invisible, on no one's radar.  But a hundred million of the american citizenry have already made the adjustment to live on very very little. And no hope of that ever changing. As long as the SNAP cards work----and you can be sure the top 10% will see to it that they do, there will be no revolution successful or otherwise.

Dark age? Depends on your definition of 'dark'. 

Mitzibitzi's picture

"As long as the SNAP cards work----and you can be sure the top 10% will see to it that they do...."

...for at least as long as it takes to release a cocktail of swine / avian / Spanish flu, antibiotic resistant E-Coli and the usual suspects of cholera, typhoid, scarlet fever, etc into the 'ghetto' populations.

Or let the sanitary systems collapse on their own through austerity-mandated lack of maintenance and let nature do the job for you. Can't get the blame then, if anyone starts poking their nose in.

Seer's picture

The problem with biological stuff is that it's not all that controllable.  I doubt that TPTB could really protect themselves from it: yeah, they might THINK that they can (fool themselves), which would be the scary part I guess (meaning that they might try it, thereby condeming ALL), but they cannot.

Seer's picture

"Dark age? Depends on your definition of 'dark'."

Exactly!  I hate all these trite labels.

I've been to parts of the world that many of us in the entitlement world (western world) would consider "dark."

I think that those looking to rule over us use such labels to scare us into Their arms.  And it's Their paradigms that are NOT sustainable.

It's not so much "dark" as the contrast, and "white," being NOT sustainable, isn't as "white" as most would like to admit (and therefore "dark" isn't as "dark" as they'd like us to believe).

AnAnonymous's picture

But a hundred million of the american citizenry have already made the adjustment to live on very very little.


Nice successful comical attempt.

on very very little? What do you mean? Six? Five? Four? Three cars/flat screen TV set? Going out to eat six, five, four, three days in a week?


Come on, US citizens have been consuming more and more for the last forty years. Consuming more and more is not live on very very little.

e-recep's picture

dark as in irrational or ideological or theological governance.

Seer's picture

"Dark age of oppression, failed civil war followed by a dark age of oppression, or successful revolution."

Apples and wrenches... You're mixing a long-term state -dark age of oppression- with short-term events -civil war and successful revolution.  The events are change boundaries.

Rise and fall, rise and fall.  And "rise" and "fall" depends on your point of view, where you are in relation to the centers of power (which are really the only things that can exhibit a sizable/recordable? event).

Humans aren't necessarily in control of their destinies, not given global climate cycles: the next glacial period would wipe out any "dark age of oppression" or "successful revolution" (to mix apples and wrenches).

KenShabby's picture

Making shit up as they go along.

Irish66's picture

withhold retirement funds 2 years after leaving job

Quinvarius's picture

LOL.  Set the mandatory retirement age to 45.  Then set the age to collect retirement benefits to 75.  That should free up a lot of jobs and stop all those pesky retirement checks from going out.  The bankers can keep getting their debt payments.  The program should last about 6 months before the bankers find a way to lose all their new found projected loot.

DaddyO's picture


Isla...I mean, Italian summer?


e-recep's picture

When will American citizens do something like this?

CrimsonAvenger's picture

When the SNAP cards stop working.

DefiantSurf's picture

funny DHS is more worried about terrorist threats, but if a cyber terrorist managed to kill the snap system...well Armageddon is only 3 meals away

SheepDog-One's picture

DHS? Oh, the ones who 'lost' the backpack full of explosives in the Phoenix airport 'security drill' this weekend? 'DHS worried about terrorist threats'? I'd say theyre the ones planning it.

ManufacturedOpinion's picture

Holy shit - they're gonna blow up PHOENIX ?!!

I was under the impression that CHICAGO would get the next false flag attack.




Oh, well ... there they go again - MANUFACTURING MY OPINION !!

CH1's picture

You may expect the SWAT Team momentarily.

Deepskyy's picture

SNAP cards or the power grid.  If we were to have a catastrophic failure of a major region power grid, that could rile up the natives in that area.  Watching the domesticated animals of the inner city (people, not pets) tear each other apart because the power has been off for a week on CNN could have some interesting side effects.

Sgt.Sausage's picture


Complacent, fat-and-happy, couch-potato, no work ethic, apathetic, lazy Joe Sixpack American?

Get me the beer and Cheetos. The games about to start. And make me a sammich, Bitchez.













SheepDog-One's picture

Im certainly not counting on the idiot women or feminized 'men' around me this morning chattering obsessively about their vicarious football party tonite to do anything ever.

pods's picture

Me either.  But, that will be a true blessing, as if and when they do act, they will not be acting in your best interest.

Think of it like helping a drowning man.  He will use anything to stay afloat, including you.

Same thing about the sleepers.  If they are shocked out of their slumber, they will immediately look to the ants of around them and convince themselves that they are owed something from those ants.

So, just keep quiet and sing them the old nursery rhyme:

"Go to sleep, go to sleep, go to sleep little sheepy."


AnAnonymous's picture

they will immediately look to the ants of around them and convince themselves that they are owed something from those ants.

Yep, right, US citizens are going to try to squeeze even more any person on planet Earth who they feel to be ants to them. And that's a lot.

pods's picture

So exactly how are US citizens squeezing the rest of the world?


Sequitur's picture

You said it. Stupid Americans paying far, far more attention to their fantasy football league and Real Housewives, instead of the Eurozone implosion.

Every day, we slide further. And every day, I care less and less whether other Americans are prepared. I don't feel proud saying it, but I swear Americans are fucking clueless.

Caviar Emptor's picture

Amen bro. And I hate to admit it or even think it. But I do, it's hard to help it. When people won't take any initiative whatsoever to improve not just the country or their neighbor but themselves and their families, it's hard to be sympathetic. 

pirea's picture

"When will American citizens do something like this?"

Answer: NEVER

you tube statistics:

Akon (I just had sex): 122,826,772 hits

How Federal Reserve Bank works: 48,281 hits

This is the reality: the people in the streets don't give a S###

Sequitur's picture

I don't know the latest numbers, but I generally recall they are 1.5 trillion euro/francs in the hole, and that's just the government debt, not the banks. Can anyone comment whether this is enough to pull them from a death spiral? It sure doesn't sound like it, not even close.

DefiantSurf's picture


 and que the riots in 3..2..1


j0nx's picture

Ah everyone everywhere wants everything but nobody wants to pay for it. We had the ability in 2008 to survive the coming upheaveal with a social benefits safety net but we chose instead to bail out the banks and the wall street titans who made bad bets. Now we must live with our ridiculousness for allowing that to happen and start embracing the poverty. Until people understand that the bank bailouts of the past 3 years are ultimately responsible for their coming living conditions then nothing will change.

SheepDog-One's picture

Right! We've fixed nothing since 2008, even though 85% said 'dont bail out the banks' the bought and paid for 'representatives' decided to hand over the blank check book to the tantrum-throwing bankers and here we are today 50X worse off.

DefiantSurf's picture

They are Greece, game over but the elephant in the room is Spain...


ZeroPoint's picture

Mamma Mia! Here we go again........

LvMises's picture

I'll bet they wish they had a cheap like this place to buy gold coins right now. Anyone know of anyplace cheaper than TexMetals? In my research, they seem to even be cheaper than Tulving for new coins, which is an accomplishment

SheepDog-One's picture

Meanwhile americans sit idle...the chatter around me this morning is all about the NFL kickoff and chicken wings, chips and dips, and beer. Sleep on, 'more broke than anyone' america.

Oh regional Indian's picture

Perhaps this is why!


The statement was, "People will have to get used to the idea of change, so used to change, that they'll be expecting change. Nothing will be permanent." This often came out in the context of a society where people seemed to have no roots or moorings, but would be passively willing to accept change simply because it was all they had ever known. This was sort of in contrast to generations of people up until this time where certain things you expected to be, and remain in place as reference points for your life. So change was to be brought about, change was to be anticipated and expected, and accepted, no questions asked. Another comment that was made from time to time during the presentation was. "People are too trusting, people don't ask the right questions." Sometimes, being too trusting was equated with being too dumb. But sometimes when he would say that "People don't ask the right questions," it was almost with a sense of regret as if he were uneasy with what he was part of, and wished that people would challenge it and maybe not be so trusting.
Another comment that was repeated from time to time, particularly in relation to changing laws and customs was, "Everything has two purposes. One is the ostensible purpose which will make it acceptable to people and second is the real purpose which would further the goals of establishing the new system. Frequently he would say, "There is just no other way, there's just no other way!" This seemed to come as a sort of an apology, particularly at the conclusion of describing some particularly offensive changes. For example, the promotion of drug addiction which we'll get into later.
He was very active with population control groups, the population control movement, and population control was really the entry point into specifics following the introduction. He said the population is growing too fast. Numbers of people living at any one time on the planet must be limited or we will run out of space to live. We will outgrow our food supply and will pollute the world with our waste.
People won't be allowed to have babies just because they want to or because they are careless. Most families would be limited to two. Some people would be allowed only one, however outstanding people might be selected and allowed to have three. But most people would be allowed to have only two babies. That's because the zero population growth rate is 2.1 children per completed family. So something like every 10th family might be allowed the privilege of the third baby. To me, up to this point, the words 'population control' primarily connoted limiting the number of babies to be born. But this remark about what people would be 'allowed' and then what followed, made it quite clear that when you hear 'population control' that means more than just controlling births. It means control of every endeavour of an entire world population; a much broader meaning to that term than I had ever attached to it before hearing this. As you listen and reflect back on some of the things you hear, you will begin to recognise how one aspect dovetails with other aspects in terms of controlling human endeavours.
Well, from population control, the natural next step then was sex. He said sex must be separated from reproduction. Sex is too pleasurable, and the urges are too strong, to expect people to give it up. Chemicals in food and in the water supply to reduce the sex drive are not practical. The strategy then would be not to diminish sex activity, but to increase sex activity, but in such a way, that people won't be having babies.


The first consideration here was contraception. Contraception would be very strongly encouraged, and it would be connected closely in people's minds with sex. They would automatically think contraception when they were thinking or preparing for sex, and contraception would be made universally available. Contraceptives would be displayed much more prominently in drug stores, right up with the cigarettes and chewing gum. Out in the open rather than hidden under the counter where people would have to ask for them and maybe be embarrassed. This kind of openness was a way of suggesting that contraceptives are just as much a part of life as any other items sold in the store. Contraceptives would be advertised and also dispensed in the schools in association with sex education!
The sex education was to get kids interested early, making the connection between sex and the need for contraception early in their lives, even before they became very active. At this point I was recalling some of my teachers, particularly in high school and found it totally unbelievable to think of them agreeing, much less participating in, and distributing of contraceptives to students. But, that only reflected my lack of understanding of how these people operate. That was before the school-based clinic programs got started. Many cities in the United States by this time have already set up school-based clinics, which are primarily contraception, birth control, population control clinics. The idea then is that the connection between sex and contraception introduced and reinforced in school would carry over into marriage. Indeed, if young people when they matured decided to get married, marriage itself would be diminished in importance. He indicated some recognition that most people probably would want to be married, but this certainly would not be any longer considered necessary for sexual activity.
No surprise then that the next item was abortion. And this, now back in 1969, four years before Roe vs. Wade, he said, "Abortion will no longer be a crime." Abortion will be accepted as normal, and would be paid for by taxes for people who could not pay for their own abortions. Contraceptives would be made available by tax money so that nobody would have to do without contraceptives. If school sex programs 

More here:
PS: Apologies for the length. It's actually much longer and good information, I think.