Thursday, November 17, 2011

11/16: President Mario? Italy, no! No, no!

Silvio Berlusconi is the sort of person my journalism professor would call "unlibelable." Certain culturual figures attain so much fame, and the concomitant rumors and innuendos and microscopic examinations of your actions, that there doesn't exist anything you can say about them that isn't a repeat fo someone else's baldfaced claim.

That's one type of unlibelable. OJ Simpson has another type, where EVERYONE says the same ONE THING over and over, despite that one thing being something you can't legally say about him, because a court decided otherwise.

And then there's Berlusconi's type of unlibelable, where you can't seem to come up with anything negative to say about the guy that's not already true. You don't need to read Italian to find a wealth of examples of how this guy, who owns a massive majority of Italian media, found ways to not so much blur the lines of conduct between the media and government as expose then to antimatter.

As of today, Berlusconi is no longer running Italy. The incumbent prime minister is Mario Monte. As with Mario Draghi before him, because he is a grown-up over 30 years of age, he had no idea his name would become the easiest go-to nickname since Chris Moneymaker started playing cards. People are already calling him Super Mario.

Please no.


I know it's a harmless nickname, but let's decide, as a society, that just because someone is named Mario that they don't automatically get that nickname. That it's fine for an athlete or that guy at the cafeteria who gives you an extra dollop of mashed potatoes, but not for THE LEADER OF ONE OF THE GREATEST COUNTRIES IN THE WORLD.
He's gone.