EppsNet Archive: Italy

Greece is Going Out of Business

9 Jul 2015 /

I remember the good old days when we only had to worry about small banks going out of business. Then big banks started to go out of business, then non-bank financial institutions, and now small countries.

The problem with having a lot of debt is that, with some exceptions (“too big to fail”), bad things happen when your investors get nervous.

My memory is not photographic as some of the legends about me say, but I am sure I would remember if the works of Adam Smith included the phrase “too big to fail.” — Garry Kasparov

What are the odds that people running companies or countries will make smart decisions about money if they don’t need to make smart decisions — if they can do just as well or better making dumb decisions and being rescued from the consequences?

According to the government debt chart below, the next countries in line for a day of reckoning are two more small countries (Ireland, Portugal) and a medium-sized country (Italy). Further down the chart are two big countries.

The United States, the biggest of the big, is not shown on the chart but is currently at 100 percent debt to GDP.

Government debt


See You in Hell

26 Apr 2015 /
Satan

Satan

[See You in Hell is a feature by our guest blogger, Satan — PE]

Greetings from the underworld!

I see that Pope Francis put a bee in Turkey’s bonnet a couple of weeks ago by calling the mass killing of Armenians in 1915 a genocide. According to the Turks, the Vatican should look to its own history before casting stones. Tu quoque!

On that note, the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Biography was just awarded to David I. Kertzer for The Pope and Mussolini: The Secret History of Pius XI and the Rise of Fascism in Europe. Historically, popes have been far more circumspect in condemning genocide and other atrocities when committed by countries willing to aggrandize the Church (or when committed by the Church itself!)

See you in Hell, clerics of all stripes . . .

Clerics


Pope John Paul II Just Killed a Guy

25 Apr 2014 /

Man crushed by giant crucifix dedicated to Pope

A man has been crushed to death after a giant crucifix dedicated to Pope John Paul II collapsed, just days before a historic Papal canonisation in Rome.

The 30-metre-high (98ft) wooden and concrete cross fell during a ceremony in the Italian Alpine village of Cevo, near Brescia. Another man was taken to hospital.

The structure was dedicated to John Paul II on his visit to the region in 1998.

ITV News

It’s clear to me that the Pope intended to kill this man. What’s the rule? Does this cancel out one of his life-saving miracles?

If you believe that a dead person can be the agent of unexplained happenings on Earth, then you’ve got to take the bad with the good. If the Pope gets credit for a miracle when a woman’s health improves after seeing his picture in a magazine, then he should take the rap when his crucifix falls over and kills someone.

pope-crucifix


Five Guys in Europe: When in Rome . . .

10 Jul 2011 /

. . . pay attention to these helpful tips.


Five Guys in Europe: Venice

7 Jul 2011 /

Here’s the latest slideshow


Five Guys in Europe: Italy

4 Jul 2011 /

Italians need to step up their manners . . .


Twitter: 2011-01-24

24 Jan 2011 /
Twitter
  • I once killed an Italian man in a duel after he accused me of not understanding Dante. #

The Problem With Debt

16 Nov 2010 /

These are all from today’s headlines:

Thirty years ago, we had the savings and loan crisis. Those were the good old days, when investors were only nervous about small banks.

Investors have since become nervous about big banks, then non-bank financial institutions, and now small countries — Greece, Portugal, Ireland . . .

That’s the problem with debt — bad things happen when your investors get nervous.

What’s next? Medium-sized countries, obviously — Italy, Britain — and eventually the biggest of the big: the United States.


The Alfa Romeo Sloth

8 Jan 2009 /

This is an Italian Alfa Romeo commercial.

To look at it, you wouldn’t know it’s a car commercial because there’s no car in it, but in Italy there’s a series of these Alfa Romeo sloth commercials. The running gag is that the sloth is a lethargic, slow-moving creature — until he gets in his Alfa Romeo — but this one’s a little different, in a mesmerizing WTF kind of way . . .


Another Reason I Like to Just Stay Home

26 May 2008 /

ROME – Italian railway police say an American tourist was hit and killed by a train at a Rome station as he was walking on the tracks in a daze after being drugged and robbed.

Police official Giovanni Piccolantonio said Monday that 74-year-old Frank Phel from California died early Friday at the suburban Tiburtina station.

Arrivederci Roma!