Yes or No to the Italian referendum on Constitutional Reform

With the Italian Referendum on Constitutional Reform but a few days away, everyone is wondering about the outcome and how that will affect the Italian economy, which has begun to rock and roll like before Marvelous Mario Monti came to the “rescue”. Many believe all hell will break loose economically if the Nays prevail. And just as many believe exactly the opposite, i.e. that it will be boom time if the Ayes prevail. But no one really knows what the extent of the boom may be, nor how devastating an economic disaster to expect in case the Nays win out. A sort of death wish seems to have taken hold of the EU. Long before Brexit turned thumbs down on the Union and its ill-fated Euro, the Italian leadership joined the leaderships of their European partners and went into a virtual coma. So too the Italian economy, which some say is now ranked 49th in the world! Since the War, Italians have been busy waging a low-intensity, mostly bloodless revolution which has been anything but glorious or successful, regardless of one’s politics. Renzi is not left enough for Italy’s “ex-communist” leadership and unions, nor right enough for Catholics and other “right-wing” elements of the political spectrum. The fact is, Italy is a kaleidoscope of parties most of which claim to be socialist, communist, marxist-leninist and anything but “conservative” or “right-wing”, which everyone knows are anything but democratic, and which may yet harbor fascist dreams of a nationalist welfare state (sic!). Well, Italians and foreigners can probably rest assured, nothing of the kind is likely to happen anytime soon regardless of who prevails in the December 4th “confirmative referendum”. Politically, Italy will remain unstable for the foreseeable future. And economically, the Country will continue to slip and slide down the path of decline, if not actual default. Perceived to be Europe’s “weakest link”, mid-way between a social-communist proletarian democracy and a would-be scandinavian-like welfare state, Italy will continue to come under financial attack unless and until someone cuts the Country’s mammoth national debt for real and for good. That, or sit back and get ready for more of the same.

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