Archive for May, 2010

One of the first things I noticed when I moved to Chicago two years ago was the very low attention gunshot killings received from the local news media.

As I flipped through the pages of the Chicago Tribune, I’d see a few dozen words accompany headlines depicting the murders of young people. Every day there would be a short clip on some violent death. Very rarely did these stories make the front page.

I am certain very few people outside Chicago – but probably even in the city itself – realize the neighborhood war that is undergoing in certain areas of the city.

The filmed death of high school student Derrion Albert was an eye-opener for most people. President Barack Obama was so shocked that he sent Attorney General Eric Holder and Education Secretary Arne Duncan to Chicago to let everyone know the government was going to lend a hand… but has it?
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There’s this veteran journalist in Italy, Emilio Fede, who is known for his pro-Berlusconi bias. That’s fine with me, he’s got his political views and I respect that.

I don’t like the fact that he has a highly visible and national TV news program to express his partisan views, but he’s on a private, Berlusconi-owned

Emilio Fede, picture from

(and unconstitutional) TV channel, so I guess he’s free to say what he wants.

What he’s not free to say, at least not without me getting very angry for it, is that Roberto Saviano is “not a hero,” suggesting the author of Gomorrah should not try to be at the center of attention all the time. He’s said it before, but this time it was for a different reason.

Fede, who often is infuriated with fellow staff members if some news item regarding Berlusconi goes wrong, has touched a level of indignity that I, as an Italian, am ashamed of. The journalist’s attempt at defending a shameful announcement made by Berlusconi a few weeks ago is much worse than Berlusconi’s initial criticism of Gomorrah.
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Silvio Berlusconi loves to joke around.

He probably thought he was really funny today, too, when he criticized unspecified studies on press freedom that place Italy in a pretty low position. (I have reason to believe it’s Freedom House’s Map of Press Freedom, where Italy is the only western European country, alongside Northern Ireland, classified as “partly free.”)

“If there’s one thing we know, it’s that Italy has too much press freedom. That is an undisputable fact,” he said in between chuckles during an official press conference.

He loves press freedom and freedom of speech so much he’s making sure journalists stay free by suing them for enormous amounts of money.
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Last week, former Cincinnati mayor Ken Blackwell was on Jon Stewart’s Daily Show to present his book: “Blueprint: Obama’s Plan to Subvert the Constitution and Build an Imperial Presidency.”

Aside from being very bad at making his point, Blackwell wasn’t able to answer a simple question about the TITLE of the book: “Specifically, how is Obama subverting the Constitution?”

Blackwell stumbled and muttered something about Obamacare and appellate court judges to be appointed by the president.

If this is subversive, please find someone to export this model to Italy.

Napolesconi, by Gippo - Gyp, 2005

What Blackwell (and co-author Ken Klukowski) need to do is read some books on Italy’s prime minister Silvio Berlusconi. Only then will they have a clearer idea of what “subverting the constitution” means.

Here are just a few facts to back up what I’m saying.
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