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This is how an Italian government ends. One-by-one, each Senator was required to say out loud whether he or she wanted the center-left government of Prime Minister Romano Prodi to stand or fall. It was the final evening act in a day's worth of high and low drama in the ornate chambers of the Italian Senate on Thursday. There were bombastic speeches by party members defying their leaders' orders on which way to vote. Former Justice Minister Clemente Mastella, who'd brought on the government crisis by yanking his support from Prodi, choked up as he recited a Pablo Neruda poem. One lawmaker was accused of spitting at another, as he screamed "traitor!", "piece of merda!" and made the gesture of firing a gun. The targeted Senator then duly fainted (or feigned a fainting) in his soft chamber chair. Finally, just after the votes were counted, victorious center-right lawmakers uncorked Spumanti directly on the Senate floor. "Take them away!," implored Senate President Franco Marini, pounding his gavel as the bubbly spilled out of the bottles onto the carpet. "This isn't a tavern here!"
Originally posted by Ste2652
This is the problem with the Italian system - there was such a fear of another Mussolini taking power after the Second World War that democracy was taken almost to an extreme... in fact, I think this makes dictators more likely because people see the democratic system as slow and ineffective, and turn their attention to more radical ways of doing things (e.g. fascism, communism). Hitler managed to exploit the ineffectiveness of the Weimar system in Germany to make his case for becoming a dictator.
I'm not suggesting that Italy is about to turn fascist again (as I don't think Italians would stand for it), but that's the danger of being too democratic (if that's the right way to express it). It can, in some cases, lead to resentment and alienation - the very problems that a democratic government is supposed to alleviate. I was amazed to hear on the news yesterday that the Italians have had 62 different governments in the last sixty years. That's a very rapid turnover.