Wednesday, 5 August 2009

Silvio: the show goes on

The Berlusconi saga continues to fascinate and amuse.

The tape recordings of conversations arranging for women to be delivered – there really is no other word – to parties paint an intriguing picture of the world inhabited by the ‘Cavaliere’, the Knight, as Italy’s Prime Minister is affectionately known. Or not so affectionately.

One can only admire the flexibility of conscience of this Knight in Tarnished Armour, to say nothing of the eclecticism of his tastes. It looks as though his goal is to embrace the whole range of possible types of relationship between a wealthy, powerful man and a woman.

At one end the spectrum is the respectable bond of marriage, now sadly being dissolved under the pressure of all the others.

Moving along the scale a little, we get to those women who seem to have been prepared to make a gift of themselves for purposes of personal advancement in their careers. Does that count as prostitution? Possibly not. There is room for further exploration.

Next there are the impressionable young, who gives themselves to ‘Papi’ – grandfather – star struck by his prestige, his knowledge of the world, no doubt also by his wealth and the capacity he has to smooth a career in modelling, perhaps even a little minor film work in time.

Still not quite there, though, are we?

So finally we have the woman who presents a bill and is paid for her services. According to the tapes, including sexual services.

Now that does sound like the oldest profession.

It’s easy to be judgemental towards our Silvio. But don’t we really owe him a little admiration? The great Roman satirist Terence wrote words that summarise the roots of tolerance: ‘I am a man and I hold no human experience alien to me’. Isn’t Berlusconi simply adding, by implication, ‘and I intend to try most of it personally’?

What I found particularly fascinating in the tape recordings is that apparently he refuses to use a condom.

Call me crazy, but might this not be a residual obedience to the teachings of the church? Somewhere deep inside him does he perhaps feel that he’s not really committing a sin if he respects the prohibition on contraception?

You see, he really does keep up his capacity to intrigue and entertain.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

you said to call you crazy; I won't, but I am tempted to call the Italian electorate crazy, as the new Duce still has 50% approval rate!