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Friday, July 10, 2009

The Italian Mafia

One of our Republic's Ministers, Minister Lunardi, once said that we have to learn to live with the Mafia.
But in order to live with something you first have to establish exactly what it is. What is today’s Mafia all about?
In a single year, the Italian Mafia groups make a combined turnover of 130 billion Euro (2003 estimate). 70% of this figure is straight profit and they are in a position to re-invest almost 100 billion Euro per year.
They can buy whatever and whomever they wish.
The life and death of a man.
The Mafia is one of the largest and most secure employers in Southern Italy (they always pay).
Thanks directly or indirectly to the Mafia, some 27% of the residents of Calabria, 12% of the residents of Campania and 10% of the residents of Sicily manage to make a living.
When you have no other option, the one that provides your daily bread automatically becomes your boss.
The Mafia is not only the most important business, but also the largest employer in the South of Italy. The turnover generated by the Mafia groups must be added to the turnover generated by their investments via their money laundering activities. In the past decade, the Mafia’s total profits have been in the region of 1,000 billion Euro.

Believe it or not, I, an Italian from the North, knew very little or almost nothing about the Mafia.
I learned about it when an American film director, Frank Coppola, made his movie The GodFather.
After that, talking about the mafia became almost a fashion.
It brought huge revenues to films talking about it.
Gomorra, one of the last, was a big success. (and also the book)
They say the Mafia or Camorra or N´drangheta exist in the South.
I know they are a typical phenomenon of places where the State and Justice do not work.
The Mafia is a way of thinking, a way of living, a way of surviving.
Since the dawn of humanity "smart people" have always tried to get everything the "easy" way.
It didn´t matter how moral or immoral it was, you got it and that was the important.
Being it a place in a hospital, in a old people home, a first number of a queue, a first place somewhere, the chance of not paying the taxes, the chance to get a "job" before the others or in spite of the others.
The list has no end.
And that is how things work in Italy.
You have to invest a part of your money in tips, to this or that.
The important is choosing the right one.
You give your vote to a politician because when you need him, he is there.
To get a permission to build, a job for your son, a place in the nursery school.
Even the right place in the right class with the good teacher.
If you pay you have better chances and if you pay a lot you get a lot...
It is impossible to defeat the Mafia, unless you change the mind of the people.
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