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They are taking us for a ride with the Bridge over the Straits #PonteSulloStretto


Sicily is on the verge of being without water. A state of emergency has been declared in Messina. 259,000 people are without running water. In Gela, they just get water once a week. In Agrigento the provision of water has been suspended because of the presence of bacteria.

Water in Sicily is managed (if you can say it’s managed at all) by a private firm (Siciliacque, 59.6% of which is owned by the French firm, Veolia) to whom Cuffaro gave the job of managing it for 40 years. The wishes of the citizens expressed in a referendum on the management of water, were completely ignored. There was a similar situation in Campania, where nine towns were without water yesterday. We have to return to the public management of water. The leaking network needs to be brought back to a good state with investment from the public purse and the risk of hydrological disturbances has to be eliminated as these disturbances are destroying the reservoirs. This is what Italy needs, but instead we are now being taken for a ride with the umpteenth announcement from someone who seems less like a statesman and more like the comic character lngegner Cane from the Gialappas, talking about the construction of the bridge over the Straits of Messina.

VIDEO How the government will construct the bridge over the Straits of Messina explained by ing. Cane

A mammoth task that will never see the light of day. It has already cost the tax payer about 600 million euro and 3 years ago the Monto government allocated 300 million for the payment of penalties if the project is NOT completed. According to the economic plan approved by the Board of Directors of the company called Stretto di Messina Spa on 29 July 2011, the overall cost of the project was to be 8.5 billion euro, which is half what’s needed for the Citizens’ Income with which the M5S will save 10 million Italians from hunger and unemployment. Up until now, a bridge measuring 3,000 metres with an aerodynamic profile has never been built. There’s no certainty that it will stay standing and especially in a zone that has a high seismic risk (do you remember the Messina earthquake?) and really strong currents. The news about the construction of the bridge is just a way of taking us for a ride. It’s useful to the PD to have something to talk about on a talk show and to cover up its every day failures. It’s useful to the mafia to open up construction sites that will never get closed down and that will cost a further hundreds of millions to the citizens who are now experiencing thirst.

Passaparola: mysteries of the #Vatican, by Gianluigi Nuzzi

Passaparola with Gianluigi Nuzzi, journalist, TV presenter and writer, talking about the latest Vatileaks scandal, revealed in his latest book "Via Crucis", coming after the best sellers: Vaticano SPA {Vatican company} and Sua Santità {His Holiness}.

“Greetings to the friends of Beppe Grillo’s blog and let’s keep this in mind: it’s always better to have a book than handcuffs.
We need to remember that there are two views of the Church, that of Pope Francis, and that of someone who says that you can't run the Church on Hail Marys and that someone was Monsignor Paul Marcinkus who created disasters in the Vatican Bank even bringing in money from the Cosa Nostra mafia.
The Pope wants to change the Church, but more than anything, he wants to change the Vatican Curia.
My book talks about all of this. It talks about bad deeds and thus it has created a lot of upset.

Peter’s Pence

I’m talking about the money collected for “Peter’s Pence” that is then destined to be given to those in need in accordance with the indications given by the Holy Father. Peter’s Pence is collected in churches all over the world, and it totals about 60 million Euro. Well, in the last few years, sixty per cent ended up covering the debts of the Curia, those gentlemen that are living in apartments measuring 500 square metres, Cardinals, just twenty per cent ended up not for worthy causes, but in a deposit account with the Vatican Bank or with the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See (APSA). Just think, that’s almost 400 million euro that’s sitting there and only 20 per cent ends up in the Pope’s account to do good works. I believe that this is in fundamental contradiction to what Pope Francis wants and is promising.

Who’s in control of APSA and the Vatican Bank?

In the Vatican Bank there are many hidden people with murky and unseeable interests. They have told us that they had closed all the accounts of lay people, that they had cleaned things up. Just about a month ago, I received a detailed report and I discovered that there are still accounts of lay people who have nothing to do with the Vatican! This is the bank that’s meant to do good works, to do missionary work, and yet there are lay people with accounts worth millions of Euro and these accounts should not exist. It’s a lie to say there are no longer accounts held by lay people.
APSA is the same. We have to acknowledge that Francis has done more to clean it up. However it still has the same , man in charge: a Cardinal who was selected by the former Secretary of State, Cardinal Bertone, with whom I’d not be willing to have a coffee. I’d not even have a drink of water with him!

Bank accounts of dead Popes

Then there’s another mystery. There are bank accounts in the name of Popes who died many, many years ago. When I discovered these I asked around among my information sources in the Vatican, but it’s still a mystery. It’s not known who manages them. The amounts are not enormous but we’re talking about hundreds of thousands of Euro. Why are they not closed down? As Giampaolo Pansa has written “in Italy and also in the Vatican, the sewage system gets everywhere”, you just have to lift up the right manhole cover and take the right drain and you can find yourself in another part completely.
This has nothing to do with faith. It has nothing to do with the Church and the fact that it is the heritage belonging to each of us personally. You may or may not have faith. The Church of the volunteers, of the Sunday schools, of the regular schools, all that is the heritage of our country through history, it’s our everyday story.

Vatican staff
Here I’m talking of the power centres that distribute privileges, that look after jobs. There are 14 HR departments in the Vatican and that is ridiculous compared to the number of employees. But each HR office has its own web of employees. On 3 July 2013, the Pope said that there’d been an increase of 30% in expenditure on employees in the previous few years and it wasn’t known why that was. It’s easy to understand: each employee that you recruit is a “trusted man” that you can depend on. And this is the web, the system of power that the Pope wants to pull down. In the 1990s all the reforms of the Curia failed. There were 5 or 6 attempts. In my opinion, this is the time for it to happen. Anyway, if it doesn’t happen now, it won’t happen.

The Committee of Enquiry into Vatican affairs
Then thre’s something else that’s surprising. In March 2014, there was a Committee of Enquiry into Vatican accounts and finances. It was trying to get to the bottom of things. One night some thieves (- or at least some people presumed to be thieves, or people dressed up as thieves), used a blow torch to break into safes and heavily protected cabinets belonging to this Committee of Enquiry.

VIDEO Thieves in the Vatican

It’s as though, here in Italy, someone got into the office of the Prosecutor, and opened the safes to take away the documents of the current investigations. Why did this happen? It seems to me that they did this to find out what had been discovered by this Committee of Enquiry set up by the Pope.

Sindona’s letters
Then a really worrying and extraordinary thing happened. A few weeks later, before the beatification of John Paul II and of John XXIII, a number of these documents turn up in a plain envelope in the same office where they were stolen. On examining these documents it was discovered that these are letters written by Michele Sindona, (so we’re talking about many years ago, in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s) in which he encouraged his Italo-American mafia friends to do business with Caldi and with Marcinkus’s Vatican Bank. These are letters that this gentleman, this banker, sent to the top people in the Church hierarchy at that time. In my opinion, this is a message of intimidation.

Ratzinger and Bergoglio: similarities and differences
There’s a fundamental difference. Bertone was Ratzinger’s right hand man. Ratzinger was the sovereign of the Vatican’s monarchy. He delegated the administration of the State, matters of business, of money, of finances. He was thus a sovereign who did not govern.

VIDEO Pope Francis is not like Ratzinger

Pope Francis was not like that. He said: “I want to govern as well. I want to do politics. I want to look at the accounts. These unauthorised accounts must not pay out to companies of friends, of chums, of lovers. How come this library has increased in cost from 100 to 200? Who has stolen that money? Be careful about the investments. - These are all things that you can find in the book. - We have invested 95 million euro in UBS and Goldman Sachs.“ In my view, I’d say that if the Curia is investing in UBS and Goldman Sachs, it seems more like a finance company than a theocracy.
So he’s saying: “Be careful about the investments.“ So, you see, he’s even looking at the invoices from the shops, the invoices relating to tenders. That is he wants to do the managing because in order for it to be credible, the Church has to be poor.

The Pope’s struggle: reforms are in danger
I believe that this is a possibility. His reforms are in danger. This is certainly the same thing, because the leadership of a Pope is represented by what he does. There are those that want to oppose him. This is actually happening. People are saying he is ill, that he has a brain tumour and thus that he is not believable. Strange thefts happening in the Vatican.

VIDEO Throwing mud at the Pope

It’s all a big swamp but perhaps it’s smaller than we imagine, but it is insidious. These are incrustations. This Pope wants to change the mindset, the laws and the men. The problem is that it takes time. The problem is that many mindsets don’t want to be changed.

The right to report news and information
To say that I’m a fan of Pope Francis is not correct. I have written this book and it is not for or against anyone. It tells the facts. In my view, these facts are what make it possible to understand what is happening. If you then ask me on a personal level, as a Christian man, what I think of the Pope, I’d say that he’s a great Pope who is driving forward change. Like his predecessor, now watch out, perhaps not everyone is in agreement with this, like his predecessor, he is revolutionising the Church. There’s nothing more revolutionary than what was done by Ratzinger, that is a step backwards, a Pope who didn’t feel able to hold the tiller of St Peter’s boat, who took a step backwards, until the arrival of a Pope who for the first time, took the name of Francis. These are personal reflections. The book is something else: the book is the work of a journalist who wanted to tell the story of facts that were not known. However, at times, there are those who prefer to arrest people who are providing information, or who are believed to have given information. Perhaps there are more than a few paedophile priests. If we do some calculations in the Vatican, in the last 3 years they’ve arrested one paedophile priest and three people who gave information to the press. I’m not very happy about this.
Spread the word.” Gianluigi Nuzzi

  • Passaparola.

Passaparola. Let’s save Italy’s artistic heritage, by Salvatore Settis

“Without what Article 9 of the constitution calls the natural landscape and the historical and artistic heritage of the Nation, Italy would not be what it is today.“ Salvatore Settis, archeologist and historian specialising in Italian art history. He’s a former director of the Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa.

“I believe that there should be public museums and private museums. There are private museums in Italy just as there are in other places. For example I could mention the Doria Pamphilj Gallery in Rome - one of the greatest private museums in the world. It’s always been a really important museum belonging to the Doria Pamphilj princes. I would leave those private museums as they are.

No to the privatisation of public museums
But, on the other hand, there are some really ancient museums, the Capitoline Museums, the Uffizi Gallery, and others, that have to stay in public hands and we have to bear in mind that the cost to the State of these public resources is not simply a cost without any benefits. Without these museums, and without these monuments, and without our landscape, without what Article 9 of the constitution calls the natural landscape and the historical and artistic heritage of the Nation, Italy would not be what it is. In order to have the identity we have, for us to be happy to be Italians, we have to show that we are able to look after this landscape and this historic artistic heritage.

Culture is food - words of a Nobel prizewinner
Not only must we look after our artistic heritage, we have to improve it!
Among the particularly great economists, there’s for example, the Nobel prizewinner, Amartya Sen. He has put forward some great arguments in relation to his nation, India, saying that in order to develop economically and improve the economic satisfaction of the citizens, the pride in their origins, the pride in belonging to a certain culture, there’s a factor that is absolutely necessary, absolutely essential: a multiplier of inventiveness of productivity and of creativity.
This has been Italy’s history for thousands of years. If we don’t want it to end, we have to protect and take care of our historical and artistic heritage with more public expenditure and recover what’s missing. Not continuing to just say the same old words, the rosary, the litany of the different episodes of crisis, but recovery of what’s missing from the terrible abyss of tax evasion that distinguishes ltaly and makes it the third country in the world after Mexico and Turkey. This isn’t a record that we should be pleased with.

The social role of the museums
These days, people talk about museums and they say loads of stuff that in the main is not true or not entirely true, however, very rarely do we remember that the museum is a very recent cultural institution. The concept of a museum that we think of nowadays, basically came into being in the 18th century, and I said then, that if it’s got a date of creation, it can also have an expiry date. Let’s keep that in mind. Do we want to close them down? OK. And yet we should continue to constantly ask ourselves what their role is. The connection with the school is incredibly important, and it’s important to remember with all this rhetoric about beauty that is produced in Italy ad nauseam, that many people indulge in (whether they are the President of the Council, a mayor or a former mayor) with all this rhetoric about beauty, we forget that beauty is nothing unless it’s history.

We are all guardians of our artistic heritage
Beauty is History, the fact that with the latest education reforms, there’s a tendency to abolish the history of art, reducing the space and perhaps talking about art education as though everyone has to be presented with a blank sheet, all of a sudden they become Rembrandt or Picasso or Michelangelo, this is a really serious mistake, because - in the words of a great art historian, Gombrich: “Unless all Italians are the guardians of their heritage, then our heritage, the heritage that belongs to everyone, will die.” Salvatore Settis

Statute of Limitations, State failure


“When all’s said and done, in Italy, the Statute of Limitations is the safety net for the delinquents and it’s also one of the main causes of the courts being clogged up. Today, a delinquent who has blatantly been caught “red-handed” does everything possible to draw out the trial procedures to arrive at the desired objective: for the trial to collapse due to the Statute of Limitations. In fact, the Statute of Limitations should avoid the State being able to “wake up” at any time and go after a citizen for a crime committed, thirty years earlier, for example. Obviously, when the State starts to take action or when it sends someone for trial, (which means that it has been given the go-ahead by a prosecuting magistrate or a Judge for the Preliminary investigation) then it’s obvious that the Statute of Limitations must be suspended.
That’s what happens in nearly all of the rest of Europe, where, with different mechanisms, the Statute of Limitations is obviously suspended or interrupted for the duration of the trial. In France and Germany, it is interrupted by the investigation activities, for example, simply by a preliminary interview with a suspect. In the United Kingdom, the Statute of Limitations does not even exist. As soon as it gained saeats in Parliament, the M5S proposed the interruption of the Statute of Limitations as soon as someone is sent for trial - for as long as that trial is ongoing. It’s a simple and effective measure that would avoid many many injustices. When a crime runs out of time because of the Statute of Limitations, the State fails twice: once because it wasn’t able to discover the truth; and once more because all the effort of the judges, the lawyers, the court officials, the investigators and so on - is just thrown away - with an atrocious waste of public money.
From 2003 to 2013, about one and a half million trials disappeared into thin air because of the Statute of Limitations.

Among the numerous people that have taken advantage of the Statute of Limitations in various ways are business people and politicians (and these are just examples): De Benedetti, Moggi, Tanzi, Geronzi, Ricucci, Fazio, Caltagirone, Gelli, Berlusconi, Andreotti, Calderoli, D’Alema, Penati, Scajola).
Today, Wednesday, in Lucca, the families of the victims of Viareggio are going to court where a really efficient team of judges is racing against time to get to the truth. Unfortunately, it’s practically impossible that three levels of judgement can be concluded before the crimes fall out of time, due to the Statute of Limitations.
You can study thousands of pages of law, but there’s not even one that makes it possible to explain to Marco Piagentini who lost his wife (aged 40) and two children (aged 2 and 4) in the tragedy, that some crimes are about to “run out of time”. The time has come to stop this. On 29 August 2014, the premier announced the reform of the Statute of Limitations; on 20 November 2014, after the shameful Eternit case, once more the premier said: “The Statute of Limitations has to change. Justice has to be done. I am struck by the interviews with the families of the victims and they make me shiver. The families are so dignified, they beliee in the justice system, even more than some public servants do. It’s not posible to console a person for the death of someone they love. There’s no verdict that can do that. However, the idea of clutching at the justice system is for me somethig that involves endless suffering and beauty.“ Did he mean what he was saying, or was he just talking to get media coverage? Almost a year has gone by: the Statute of Limitations has not changed. The PD continues to say “no” to the M5S proposal! The Statute of Limitations must be interrupted at the moment someone is sent for trial: we are asking the government to keep to its commitments!”
Alfonso Bonafede, M5S Lower House

Passaparola: A cultural revolution to save humanity, by Serge Latouche

Passaparola by Serge Latouche, French economist and philosopher. Serge Latouche is one of the regular contributors to the journal Revue du MAUSS, he’s president of the association “La ligne d’horizon”, he’s emeritus professor of economics at the University of Paris-Sud and at the The Institute of Economic and Social Development studies (IEDES) in Paris.

“We’ve reached a point that means we can no longer go on as we are doing!
Everyone’s talking about crisis and it’s slightly paradoxical because I’ve always been hearing about a crisis ever since 1968 when there was a cultural crisis, then in 1972, with the publication of the work by The Club of Rome, there was talk of an ecological crisis, then there was the neoliberal counter-revolution and the social crisis with Margaret Thatcher and Reagan, and now there’s the financial crisis and the economic crisis after the collapse of Lehmann Brothers.
Finally, all these crises are getting mixed up and we’re seeing a crisis of civilisation, an anthropological crisis. At this point, the system can no longer be reformed - we have to exit from this paradigm - and what is it? It’s the paradigm of a growth society Our society has been slowly absorbed by an economy based on growth, not growth to satisfy needs - and that would be a good thing - but growth for the sake of growth and this naturally leads to the destruction of the planet because infinite growth is incompatible with a finite planet.
We need a real reflection when we talk about an anthropological crisis. We need to take this seriously because we need a decolonisation of the imagination. Our imagination has been colonised by the economy. Everything has become economics. This is specific to the West and it’s fairly new in our history. It was in the seventeenth century when there was a great ethical switch with the theory expounded by Bernard Mandeville. Before, people said that altruism was good and then: "no, we have to be egoists, we have to make as much profit as possible; greed is good“. Yes - to destroy our "oikos“ (our home) more quickly. And we have actually got to that point.
We can see this with Climate Change, with the loss of biodiversity, with the pollution of our air, water, and soil. We’ve reached a point that means we can no longer go on as we are doing! We either change direction, or it will be the end of humanity.
So the project is to exit from the growth society, exit from the consumer society, exit from the economy and find once more the social or better still, the societal. This revolution is primarily a cultural revolution, but it’s not a quick fix, it’s a long process that takes time.
When I started organising conferences on degrowth, I thought it was necessary to change direction before the collapse, but now I’m getting more of a pessimist. I think that we won’t avoid the collapse. We need to make preparations for the time after the collapse.. And let’s hope it’s not a total collapse and that there is a possibility for humanity to have a future, to invent a new future.” Serge Latouche

In Italy only the poor are on the increase


The number of poor people in Italy is increasing. According to the July figures published by the official statistics agency, ISTAT, there are 10 million poor people. According to the report published this week by the study group Unimpresa, just last year, there’s been an increase of 30,000 - that’s as though a whole town has fallen into poverty. There’s just no sign that this epidemic is going to calm down.

The working poor

The ones affected are not only those without a job, who represent about a third. Most of the people who are poor, are working! They go into the office. They’ve got a boss. They’ve got responsibility. They pay taxes. However, they don’t manage to have a dignified life. They can’t pay for medical treatment. They do without going away on holiday. They eat low cost rubbish food that makes them ill. They suffer because they cannot guarantee a future for their offspring and because they have to queue up at the Caritas soup kitchen when they’ve finished work. They are not free people. They are slaves. According to the Unimpresa results, some are employed part time (740 people), some full time (1.66 million people), some are freelancers working part time (802 thousand), some are contractors (349 thousand) and some have long term part time contracts (2.5 million). In total there are 6.1 million such workers living in poverty - with fragile job prospects and low income. They are thus slaves. The triumphalist announcements of the government’s propaganda have no meaning and show that there’s an underlying intention of taking us for a ride: more people in work and more people in poverty. The government doesn't want to eliminate poverty. It just wants to normalise it with the “Jobs Act”.

VIDEO “There’s nothing to celebrate”. The truth about the GDP and unemployment

The government’s propaganda lies

The unemployment figures are meaningless and everyone knows that. The nespapers and the government spout off about three figure numbers. They talk about more than 300 thousand more fixed contracts than there were in the first 8 months of 2014. Of these 300 thousand, almost 230 thousand are simply already existing contracts that have bene converted and counted as new contracts. There are in fact only slightly more than 10 thousand new worker-slaves a month because the "increasing-protection-contract" allows the employer complete freedom to fire the employee in the first 3 years. Workers will all be fired shortly before the end of their three year limit and then they will either be taken on again or replaced by new slaves. According to ISTAT, those who are trainees, the workers with the least amount of security, are counted as officially employed. How much does a trainee earn? In certain cases, a pat on the back and at the end of their training, a kick up the backside. There’ve been 30,772 new trainees taken on in 8 months just in Sicily, 11,912 in Lazio, 9,021 in Emilia Romagna and 4,843 in Veneto. If you think about all 20 regions, you can understand the trick.

The Citizens’ Income is the only way out

Jobs are no longer being created and poverty is increasing. What the government is doing is propaganda and they are just finding ways of publishing figures that keep the "market“ calm. The GDP is increasing thanks to drugs, prostitution, and contraband, thanks to favourable international conditions, and thanks to more people with jobs - people that are still poor. For an Italian person, nothing has changed. The M5S Citizens’ Income that lifts out of poverty someone who hasn’t got a job (and helps them find one) , as well as someone who has a job, but is still poor, - the M5S Citizens’ Income is the only way to save Italy.

VIDEO Shock admission from PD person talking live: THEY ARE KEEPING UNEMPLOYMENT HIGH ON PURPOSE!


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Climate change and preserving life on the earth: the M5S in Bolivia


Mirko Busto, M5S spokesperson in the Lower House

“The M5S is the only Italian parliamentary entity to participate in the “World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Defense of Life“ that will be held at Cochabamba in Bolivia from 10 - to 12 October. I am greatly honoured to be able to represent our hope of building a society that is more just, more equal and finally more able to live in harmony with our only home: Mother Earth.

We need to act. Climate Change is a priority among the emergencies affecting our world. The most recent estimates portray a bleak future with a planet that is warmer and more arid (more than 4 degrees warmer by the end of the century) with a higher number of more extreme events like flooding, storms and typhoons. More droughts, less water and soils that are less fertile. In other words, a less hospitable planet. A planet that is less able to feed the life that inhabits it.
But also a planet that is yet more unjust. Climate Change increases the disparities at a world level, because its effects are already having a bigger impact on the poorer countries in the south of the world, the more vulnerable ones and those with fewer financial resources to tackle the effects. Fundamental resources like food and water are the new petroleum oil. Their scarcity or unjust distribution will always be the cause of wars and mass migrations.
We have to act immediately and decisively.

VIDEO Global fever killing the planet

The only thing that counts in relation to the limitation of temperature rises is the total quantity of greenhouse gases that we are allowed to emit, our “budget” and if we continue at the present rate, we’ll use up this allowance very rapidly. According to The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) this will be used up in just 21 years if we go on emitting at the current rate. Ths is the massive challenge that we are summoned to address. It’s a challenge that falls above all on the more developed countries, those that have been responsible over many years - those that have been the major contributors to this problem.
What’s before us is a period of great change. We need to rethink how we live, how we move around, what we are eating and how we produce our food, how we keep warm and how we produce energy. This is a period that can see us full of enthusiasm, like a new Renaissance, or it could be traumatic if we are not able to manage the transformation.
We can do it - and the change is already under way. We do have the technologies for this transition and the experiences of change from the grass roots are growing very fast.
The question we need to ask ourselves is another one. Is this political system able to facilitate this change - or make it possible? The answer is definitely not. To come out of the climate crisis we need a political system that is free - one that doesn't have to answer to any “master”, or lobby or multinational. One that answers just to the citizens and to the common good.
The M5S is the first experiment on a national scale that attempts to bring about this new paradigm and ever since its first steps inside parliament, it has been putting forward draft laws encapsulating its vision for the future.
We have the solution to transform the failing Italian policies of waste disposal that are financing incineration and poisoning citizens and destroying million of jobs. We are drawing up an energy plan to take a system that is completely dependent - addicted - to fossil fuels, and transforming it into a system that is totally based on renewable fuels.
We are working towards a system of agriculture thatt guarantees healthy food that is sustainable and local. We have to safeguard our food sovereignty. We need a basis of respect for biodiversity and the protection of soil fertility. But we also need to have the strength to promote food choices that are more sustainable.
Every day we are fighting to reduce military spending, especially that aimed at the participation in wars that are camouflaged as peace missions that contribute, not just to the most pitiful annihilation of human life, to the destruction of natural resources, and the mass exodus of peoples and to an infernal military-industrial vicious cycle that increases the climate costs.
So - it’s true. Time is short. Timeframes are very short. The old system, with its monstrous network of interests and both human and political corruption, still seems strong and able to keep us in a straitjacket - petrified - making choices that offer no future. But the elements to resolve this puzzle are already available and change is already happening under the surface, starting from the ground upwards and it is growing thanks to initiatives coming from the citizens and from the communities. What’s necessary is just to remove the obstacles and perhaps to give the right impetus.
We have the freedom and the will to do this. They simply cannot do it.
This is why the President of Bolivia Evo Morales invited us to come to Cochabamba. In the next few weeks, everyone will be talking about the Climate Change Conference in Paris - COP21. Leaders of nations and governments from countries that are developed and those that are not developed will try to negotiate for the umpteenth time - - they’ll be attempting interventions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions with the aim of limiting temperature rises to a maximum of two degrees centigrade. The powerful people of the world have been having useless meetings for years now. Enough. “there’s no time to spare“. This was the warning of Pope Francis in October 2014 when he met Evo Morales in Rome. It’s time to have a reaction from the grassroots by mobilising the peoples and the campaign groups to establish change. It’s time to set off for Cochabamba.


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#DeutscheBank full of holes


“Two days ago, Deutsche Bank, a bank with assets worth more than Italy’s GDP, has declared the need to adjust the results for the third quarter of 2015 to reflect losses of almost 6 billion euro.

70 thousand billion in derivatives
Details of the reasons for these losses are not yet available but it is well known that the bank has an anomalous concentration of derivatives in its portfolio: 75 thousand billion dollars (about 65 thousand billion euro!), equivalent to 20 times Germany’s GDP. It seems that Deutsche Bank has really not learned much from the 2008 crisis, even though America’s Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) in May of this year, penalised its structured finance dating back to the time of Lehman Brothers, with a fine of 55 million dollars.

And yet Deutsche Bank passed the European Banking Authority’s stress tests without any particular censuring. However, the US stress tests carried out by the Federal Reserve before the summer, definitely found the German bank to have done badly and classed it among those that would not survive another financial crisis.
So perhaps those that said the European stress tests put too much emphasis on the spread of the yield of government bonds among the various member countries, were not wrong. It’s a phenomenon that has become dangerously familiar to us, to such an extent that now, very few are aiming to tackle the root causes of the problems.

VIDEO Beppe Grillo at the meeting of the Monte dei Paschi di Siena bank

MPS and Deutsche Bank
Even with us, derivatives continue to wreak havoc on the commercial banks (example: MPS) and on the coffers of the State. But let’s take things one at a time, starting with the commercial banks and then the public sector. MPS has recently concluded a transaction with Nomura after having concluded another one last year with Deutsche Bank to put an end to the episode involving Alexandria and Santorini derivatives. Regardless of the details of the transaction, it’s difficult not to connect these losses with the “Monti Bonds” and the various capital increases that pulverized the share values and impoverished the small-scale shareholders to the extent of billions of euro, as well as destroying the country’s third largest bank. We know that the government has pulled out of the game; it has already implemented (in an excess of virtue!) the new European regulations regarding bank bail-ins that will come into force next year and thanks to which losses will be offloaded directly onto the poor current-account holders, as well as others, including the minority shareholders.
We know that the Milan Prosecutors Office has started a number of indictments on this issue and it is also investigating matters arising form the time of Alessandro Profumo and Fabrizio Viola, but we know that even for the Italian Securities and Exchange Commission (CONSOB) and the Bank of Italy, up until now, everything has been basically OK. As usual, accounting issues come to the notice of “Supervisory bodies“ when the prosecutors decide to take action. It’s a shame that bodies like the Bank of Italy and CONSOB exist to prevent mismanagement and not to pretend to intervene when the prosecutors arrive.

What’s happening in Italy
160 billion in derivatives and more than 40 billion in potential losses. One thing is clear that we learned from this year’s investigation. These measures were not aimed at providing cover but they were purely speculation at the expense of the citizens! And that’s how they generate profits or losses. Unfortunately for us - since we bet on the wrong side - they turned out to be losses. And as though that were not enough, as well as saddling us with the disastrous losses that these contracts can generate, they even deny us access.
In fact we have used all possible methods and in all possible places, and we have asked to be able to see THE CONTRACTS that are underlying these figures so that we can have them analysed by people that understand these things. The Movement has so many quality resources that it can access independently.
What was the reaction? What response was given by the State and by the government to our transparency operation? They have in fact imposed “State Secrecy”.

Derivatives: State omertà = State secrecy
In fact, just 2 days ago the two-chamber committee for access to government documents DENIED us the possibility to view the contracts. This latest slap in the face of transparency seems to us to be in revenge for our denunciation to the Rome Prosecutors Office for omission of official actions in relation to our access to the official documentation relating to the derivative contracts of the Ministry of the Economy and Finances (MEF) presented about 10 days ago. Thus, in this case, the government is involved but it is not acting to aid transparency but to make things more murky, even though only a few months ago, Renzi himself declared that the derivative contracts would be published on the Internet - on the Ministry’s website.

What are they hiding from the citizens?
Even more early closures that we are not allowed to get information about until they happen and that will perhaps generate losses to be offloaded in the forthcoming Stability Law, as happened at the end of 2011 when there were losses of more than 2 billion euro (as well as the stunning new council tax - called IMU and also the FORNERO LAW).
Obviously we hope that we’re wrong. Anyway, the highest common denominator in these stories is the LACK OF CLARITY. No one knows how it is that Deutsche Bank can suddenly have losses of 6 billion, just as it’s not yet known today whether the MPS accounts are or are not being honestly presented and nor is it known how much of that potential loss of 40 billion in derivatives is actually happening.
Stay tuned. We’ll keep on going with this issue.” Carla Ruocco, M5S spokesperson in the Lower House


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ISIS is a creation of the West, by Monsignor George Abou-Khazen

Monsignor George Abou-Khazenm. a Franciscan of the Custody of the Holy Land, is bishop of the Syrian city of Aleppo. For the last 11 years he’s been living in Syria and he has personal experience  of one of the bloodiest wars of this century. “We are well aware of this. Everyone knows it and everyone is aware but everyone pretends not to know: ISIS was created by western powers.” Monisgnor George Abou-Khazen

Blog - What’s Syria like?

Mons. George – The situation is very difficult, as everyone knows, and unfortunately, this dramatic situation is making people flee and escape elsewhere. There are a few reasons why these people are escaping, like suffering and the danger of death. There are many areas [in Syria, editor] where’s it’s impossible to live because of this civil war and we are sorry about this. Unfortunately, Syria is becoming empty. It is losing its population. And who’s leaving? The young people. And a nation without young people is also a nation without a future. The ones leaving are the ones with education and qualifications.

Blog - What’s Europe doing?

Mons. George – We thank Europe for its humanity and for the welcome it’s giving to these refugees. However, this is what we think: instead of dealing with the effects, why not go straight away to the roots, to the cause? By resolving the root causes, the refugee issue is solved. Instead of arming the various groups, training them and giving them incentives to fight each other, why not make them sit down together and talk about things and make peace? To be sure, it’s difficult, but it’s not impossible.

Blog - Many analysts are saying the war in Syria is a “proxy war” ...

Mons. George – We too think it’s a proxy war, unfortunately. Each of these armed groups is related to an external country that’s providing weapons and finance. Thus if there’s the will, this war could be stopped.

Blog - The USA is calling for Assad to step down. Moscow wants him to stay in power so as to start a peaceful transition. Which of the two is right?

Mons. George – The Americans say that to resolve everything, Assad has to leave, but leave what? And who would fill the vacuum? On the other hand, the Russians say that Assad is the President of a free and independent nation, re-elected by the people and thus it should be up to the people to decide whether he should stay or go. And I believe that this point of view is more just.

Blog - Do you think that a NATO-led military intervention could be the solution?

Mons. George – We are against any military intervention. War has never resolved issues. We are 100% convinced that what they think can be achieved with a military intervention can be done in a peaceful way. You just have to turn the tap off and things will be OK.

Blog - Germany announced that it wanted to welcome the Syrian refugees, then it had second thoughts. Even the USA is opening its doors. Why do you think this is?

Mons. George – Northern Europe and the United States have said they are ready to welcome these people from Syria, that’s true, but I think they’ve done that as a way of making amends for a guilty conscience.

Blog - What are you referring to?

Mons. George – You see, the international community is in difficulty because it wants to create peace, but it’s continuing to sell arms and these arms are mixed up with the blood of innocent people. Thus, this is my message, please do not sell any more arms. Anyway, we even know that ISIS is now in possession of petroleum and gas deposits and that it’s selling these. But who is buying?

Blog - Turkey?

Mons. George – Yes - Turkey and a few other countries via Turkey. However, what’s even more dangerous is that they are selling the artistic and archeological treasures of Iraq and Syria. And what they cannot sell, they are destroying. We are talking about billions for these art treasures.

Blog - And yet, even though there are setbacks, negotiations for Ankara to come into the EU are still ongoing ...

Mons. George – The European Community had started a process that we thought was logical: anyone wanting to be a member or to have a relationship with the European Union had to accept certain rules, like human rights, religious freedom etc. And let’s hope that Europe continues in this direction, because what we are seeing, even in Turkey for example, is that there’s a religious radicalism that is slowly developing. Before, it was a secular country, whereas now the people governing it are no longer secular but Islamic. And then, we have had an unhappy experience [with Turkey, editor], because many of these foreign combatants come from there. Basically, I think it’s never a bad thing to open people’s eyes.

Blog - What is ISIS?

Mons. George – There’s this organization of Islamic State that is occupying a large part of Syria, it’s said to be more than 50% of the territory, the part where there’s wealth underground, and, obviously, where there are very few people. The point is that we know this very well. Everyone knows it and everyone is aware but everyone pretends not to know. This is how we see it: ISIS was created by Western powers and today it’s also supported by other countries, like the Gulf States.

Blog - Going back to the issue of refugees: how can the boats be stopped?

Mons. George – I’m wondering why Europe and the West, that are exploiting Africa to find gold and petroleum, why are they not thinking up a development plan for these poor people? That is, create job opportunities, factories, education and knowledge in their countries. This can be done and it gives economic advantages for any exporting country as well as for the importing country, where these development plans are brought to fruition. There are a lot of Christian communities and minority groups from Syria that are leaving their lands, they are peoples like the Chaldeans, Assyrians, and the Syriacs that have thousands of years of history, language and traditions and they lose these when they are obliged to leave their cities. This is sad and it impoverishes everyone. Why are they not helped with development so that these people can stay in their own lands? It would cost Europe and the West a lot less than to receive and welcome the migrants.


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Compassion is dead


Milan - a morning at the beginning of autumn - a day like any other. At 07:40 - a symbolic time of the morning - a time made famous by Lucio Battisti’s song ("mi sono informato c'e' un treno che parte alle 7 e 40/ non hai molto tempo il traffico e' lento nell'ora di punta...“ {I’ve been told there’s a train leaving at 07:40 / you’ve not got much time the traffic moves slowly in rush hour ...} ) a 19 year old Italian woman originating from Nepal threw herself under the metro train at Lanza station. The woman has serous injuries but they are not life threatening. Trains on the green line were blocked for 80 minutes and that had an affect on the other lines as well. Above ground the traffic got in a frenzy. At that time in the morning the travellers are mainly commuters and they have no time to spare as they have to get to work. Many of them come into Milan from outside the city. News about the attempted suicide immediately appeared in online newspapers and the comments are nearly all atrocious. There were those that got angry with immigrants that have to stay in their own countries and commit suicide there. There were others that want to get her to pay Equitalia to cover the costs of the upset, as though anyone who wants to die first has to do a few calculations to see what it would cost if they stayed alive (if they die it’s up to the relatives). Theyre were others that suggested establishing a "suicide point" in Milan where you can commit suicide without disturbing other people. Some suggested the Darsena (the city’s harbour), others suggested the Idroscalo (artificial lake in Milan, Italy that was a seaplane airport) or the Shooting range with a pistol offered by the municipality.

There were those offering to "finish the job" given that the young woman survived. Sure, these were empty words, but there was not a single comment asking why this young woman wanted to die at 19 years old. Nor did anyone ask which hospital she’d been taken to so they could go and visit or send her some flowers. In London and in Paris there are barriers in the metro stations to prevent suicide attempts. In Milan, the city of EXPO 201, there are barriers in just a few stations but they should be installed in all stations. Compassion is dead and not just in Milan.

VIDEO a 47 second appeal by José Mujica


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Is it just Volkswagen that’s polluting by trickery? #controlliamoletutte


“The 5 Star MoVement says “yes” to Germanic rigour. We are calling for the same inflexibility imposed by Germany on the whole of Europe with austerity and the artificial limit of 3%, to be applied to anyone who has willfully poisoned European citizens. We are talking about Volkswagen. The most important German car manufacturer has manipulated the software in its diesel cars to rig the data on exhaust gas emissions. Here’s how and why Volkswagen has been poisoning us and what the European Union should do immediately so as to avoid accusations of complicity.

Declaring that a vehicle has low emissions helps to position that brand in the lucrative eco-friendly market. It’s called awareness marketing and more and more companies are using it to improve their so called “brand image”. A customer that is aware he’s purchasing an eco-friendly product (that doesn’t pollute, isn’t damaging to health, has intrinsic ethical values) is happier and more motivated and tends to buy the same product again. Furthermore, to declare that a car consumes less, is a well-used sales strategy, because it makes the consumer feel the product is giving them long-time value. If a car has a lower consumption over a long time-frame, then the customer is spending less on fuel. Volkswagen managers have been scientifically lying so as to sell more.



Car users have been tricked, and citizens poisoned. Smog produced by cars is responsible for the premature death of 65 thousand people every year in ltaly, according to the EU report on air Quality 2013. The estimated health care costs are about 150 billion.

VIDEO Volkswagen: car users tricked, citizens poisoned

The 5 Star MoVement set to work immediately. Two urgent formal questions have been presented to the European Commission by the spokespersons Piernicola Pedicini and Marco Affronte calling for immediate action. Eleonora Evi has called for all cars currently on European roads to be subjected to checking that is independent and public.
We need to change the rules for automotive homologation and bring in “Real Driving Emissions (RDE) tests“: Tests on vehicles have to be carried out when they are travelling on the road so as to get a real value for emissions and they must be carried out by an independent agency and not by the vehicle manufacturers: it’s like asking the bar-tender if the wine is good.

If the European Union were truly impartial and neutral it would ask ALL the car manufacturers that have been causing illegal pollution to pay 150 billion euro to offset the healthcare costs If it doesn’t intervene (or if it just pretends to intervene with the usual “window dressing” to reassure the general public) it is showing that it is protecting the automobile lobbies and German economic interests (among other things) that are enormously important in this market.” M5S Europe


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The Parliamentarian that serves you #Italia5Stelle


“The 5 Star MoVement has turned down 42 million euro of public financing and in the last two years, with its spokespersons, in Parliament it has given back more than 14 million euro to the public purse. The 5 Star MoVement has always been self-financing and it will keep that up for the #Italia5Stelle festival taking place 17-18 October in Imola.

VIDEO The only parliamentarians in the world that serve you a pizza. 5 STELLE

This is why we’re bringing back “The member of Parliament is serving you“: deputies, senators and local spokespersons will be waiters and waitresses for a day. They will bring the pizza to your table to collect donations in preparation for #Italia5Stelle. First - in Bologna on Friday 25 September at the restaurant “Il Capriccio” in San Lazzaro di Savena, starting at 8.30 pm. Then it’ll be Rome on 1 October and Brescia on 2 October. After that parliamentarians will be serving pizza all over Italy right up to 10 October in Viterbo. You can spend a convivial evening and make a contribution with a donation to an event that is totally self-financed.

VIDEO Beppe Grillo - waiter for one night - serving citizens at their table

Serving pizza - deputies and senators who are representing nine million Italians in Parliament, including Luigi Di Maio, Roberto Fico, Alessandro Di Battista and Paola Taverna, together with many many others." M5S in Parliament


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Dario Fo at #Italia5Stelle in Imola

In this video, Dario Fo is confirming his participation at the second edition of Italia 5 Stelle to be held at Imola on 17 and 18 October at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari.
As well as Dario Fo, there’ll also be the following performers and singers interleaved with M5S spokespersons.
Up until now, the following have given confirmation of their presence:
Paolo Migone
Malandrino & Veronica
Flavio Oreglio
Amscat - Kamasutra Do Brasil
Leonardo Manera
Valentina Tioli
Nina Monti
Fuoco sul beat
Lello Analfino & Tinturia
Rudy Rotta
I Musicanti del Vento
Formazione minima
Il Sinfonico e l'improbabile orchestra
Giovanni Romano
Andrea Tosatto
Le Gal
Il Duo Va
Fabrizio Zanotti
A massive big “thank you” to all these performers who are giving their services for free!

The massacre of the Kurds and the silence of Europe


“In the last few days, Turkish Military units have entered northern Iraq in an operation against the guerrillas of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). The Ankara government has defined it as land-based incursion and a "short-term" measure to finally “eliminate” the “rebels”. We are given to believe that Erdogan took the decision to intervene following the PKK attack in Igdir last Tuesday which killed 13 local police officers. But the truth is that for some months now, the Turkish army has being besieging the only entity that has demonstrated it is really able to stop the advance of ISIS.
And Europe stays silent, enclosed in a shell of hypocrisy and opportunism. The “popular resistance” cells have collapsed. They were formed last March when different member states (including Italy) gave the green light to sending in arms to the Peshmerga. Even the government stays silent. There’s not a word from Minister Gentiloni even while the Turkish air force is continuing an indiscriminate attack on rebels and civilians. This is not simply shameful. It’s showing the double standards used by the West where people are ready to tear their hair out when looking at the dead body of little Aylan, but where they are careful to stay silent when their own interests, or the interests of their allies are at stake.

In fact, Turkey is the only member that NATO has in the Middle East. It is in a strategic position (to the East it has borders with Armenia, Azerbaijan and Iran, to the South East it borders Iraq and to the South, Syria). The USA cannot do without it and the EU feels it has a duty to protect it. It doesn’t matter whether the game play involves the sacrifice of the fundamental rights of a people who for decades have been legitimately claiming their independence and autonomy.
This is why the EU remains silent even in relation to Erdogan’s intentions to change the constitution to give himself more powers and even thinking of the city of Cizre that is now on its last legs - after suffering a blackout for more than a week, without new supplies of food and water. And meanwhile ISIS is movng forward, conquering, and threatening our country, but above all threatening the survival of democracy.


The M5S has put forward a number of parliamentary motions asking for the recognition of the Kurdish State. Already in August of last year there was a resolution put forward by Carlo Sibilia and another one by Emanuele Scagliusi clearly stating that what the Kurdish people need are not guns, not Kalashnikovs, but protective helmets and rights to an independent state. Instead, someone in Europe and someone in our government have decided to treat them like cannon fodder, while playing at being world emperors in the wake of the errors committed in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. The kurdish people are a people of resistance a people that deserves our support, a people abandoned by the EU that is following its own strategic interests. Don’t cry any longer gentlemen, because the tears shed over the photo of little Aylan are not enough to salve your consciences. “
M5S Lower House


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The civil war in Syria - part 2


image: ISIS conquers the ancient city of Palmyra in Syria and razes it to the ground

Read the first part.

Foreign Fighters. The proliferation of Islamic militias in the region has been helping to create a jihadist “melting pot” in the last few months. In Iraq and in Syria this is channeling the ambitions of hundreds of foreign fighters who have set off to get to the front to join up with the rebel militias who are fighting against Assad’s government troops. This is a crucial element in the Syrian civil war. Today it’s estimated that the two most important jihadist groups, the al-Nusra Front, and the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant have recruited to their ranks at least 9,000 non-Syrian fighters which is about 20% of the total. Including the other islamic groupings and the Free Syrian Army, this brings the overall figure to between 11,000 and 15,000. According to estimates from our intelligence services, there are more than 60 of our fellow citizens who have gone off to fight side by side with the terrorists and at least 10 of these are Italians or naturalised Italians. Anyway, it’s a tiny number compared to the more than 1,500 who have set off from France, and the 800-1000 from Britain, or the 650 Germans and the 400 from the Netherlands and from Belgium. In this process, even the women have had leading roles: the Italian woman Maria Giulia Sergio is one of the young people that has recently chosen to convert to Islam to then join up in Syria. Since al-Baghdadi’s proclamation of the Caliphate, the Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence in London has estimated that at least 4,000 western citizens have joined the conflicts in Iraq and Syria. Of these, about 550 are thought to be women who have set off from Europe and are now in the territory controlled by ISIL.

VIDEO USA Senator admits: “We financed ISIS”

The controversial role of Ankara and the weapons going to the Peshmerga. In this coming and going of presumed and potential jihadists, Turkey is playing a crucial role. According to some people, even though Turkey is a member of NATO and a close ally of the West, it is in fact thought to be one of the leading supporters of ISIL. And anyway, it’s not by chance that the main strongholds of the terrorist group are situated along the border with Turkey.


Meanwhile, the United States is arming and training the “moderate“ rebels and now ISIS fighters have rifles bearing the inscription: "Property of US Govt“. This was discovered by a governmental organisation: Conflict Armament Research

VIDEO Sean Penn: “Thank you Bush and Cheney for having created ISIS”

The international coalition and the Washington-Riyadh axis . Having understood, with a certain delay, the danger of the expansion of the jihadist militias in the region, in August 2014, Obama made an agreement with a few partners in Europe, including ltaly, to establish an international coalition to fight ISIS. To support this, our government has so far sent 2.5 million dollars-worth of weapons, including machine guns, grenades, fighter planes and more than a million rounds of ammunition, as well as humanitarian assistance. The mission has given many people to believe that all of a sudden, Washington has changed tack and has decided to support the Syrian regime. That’s just not true. For the Washington-Ankara-Riyadh axis, the objectie of getting rid of ISIL implies the real objective which is to get rid of Assad. This can be seen in the words spoken by Obama who recently when he said that he was even ready to hit Syrian government positions if attacks on the ciilian population were found to be coming from such positions. However, the humanitarian factor carries very little weight on the political stage. The crucial point today is exclusively the future of Assad: Moscow and Teheran are asking for him to stay in power, the West is continuing to exert pressure to have him resign. Anyway, history teaches us that up until now, outside interference has never had the outcomes that were hoped for. In fact, it has always contributed to increasing sectarian clashes. Dividing up power into ethnic and religious quotas on the basis of one’s own interests is thought to be a deterrent for any sort of peaceful transition in preparation for national unity. Iraq, Lebanon, Afghanistan and Libya should tell us something.


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