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Thread: Today - Italian General Election

  1. #1

    Default Today - Italian General Election

    Poll will close at 5pm EST.

    There are four main parties:
    -Democratic Party (the main leftist party, like our Democrats, governing incumbents)
    -Forza Italia (the main fake conservative party, like our Republicans)
    -Lega Nord (Italy's version of the alt-right, coalition partners with Forza Italia)
    -Five Star Movement (Italy's version of the bernie bros)

    The incumbent Democrats are expected to lose seats, while the others gain. It is expected that the right coalition (primarily Forza and Lega) will have a plurality of seats, with Five Star coming in second, and the left coalition (primarily the Democrats) coming in third, but with no party or coalition gaining a ruling majority, which will create a lot of political and economic instability.

    Latest polls:

    Dems - 21%
    Forza - 16%
    Lega - 15%
    Five Star - 26%



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  3. #2

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    The major point of interest here, IMO, is that the divide between the four major parties listed above mirrors the political divide in the US. If we had a parliamentary system, I expect the alt-right/Trumper wing of the GOP would end up splitting off into its own party (it might yet), with the Bernie Bros doing the same with respect to the Democratic Party.

    As for the effect of this election on Italy itself, assuming that no on wins a majority, I expect nothing much to change (which is a huge problem, because Italy very much needs change). The surprise outcome would be the right coalition winning, in which still nothing much would change I think, except there'd be an intensification of anti-immigrant/nationalist rhetoric (if not also action), though EU exit is probably off the table.

    Is there any good news within the Italian political scene? Best I can tell, the closest thing to a libertarian party is Italian Radicals, but they're subsumed within a coalition, within another coalition, so I'm not sure that we'll even see their individual results (which would be minuscule in any event). In short, no there's not much in the way of good news in Italian politics.

  4. #3

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    The Trumpbart, Goldman Sachs fellow is unsurprisingly endorsing the know nothings:

    Quote Originally Posted by Bannon
    “Italians often consider themselves provincial in world politics, but this is not so: you are on the crest of the wave, a fundamental test of the power of sovereignty, of what it means in the modern era, and this is exemplified by the issue of migrants,” he said. “All the problems of the Middle East and Africa have been dumped by the EU over Italy and people have had enough, they want their sovereignty. This election is crucial for the global populist movement.”
    http://www.corriere.it/esteri/18_mar...021d6049.shtml

    (english translation of his remarks here)

  5. #4

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    Polls Closed, First Exit Polls Coming Out:

    Chamber of Deputies (lower house)

    Right Coalition (Forza, Lega, et al) 35.5%
    5 Star Movement 30%
    Left Coalition (Democrats et al) 25.6%

    Senate (upper house)

    Right Coalition (Forza, Lega, et al) 36%
    5 Star Movement 30%
    Left Coalition (Democrats et al) 26.6%

    https://www.politico.eu/article/live...ampaign=buffer

  6. #5

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    Italy just changed its electoral law and no one seems to quite understand it, but the consensus is that a party/coalition needs ~40% to govern.

  7. #6

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    Projections by Italian news channel La7 for the Senate, by individual party:

    Forza 14.1%
    Lega 17.3%
    5 Star 33.1%
    Democrats 18.7%

    It's noteworthy that Lega is ahead of Forza.

  8. #7

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    Some Updates:

    -La Pen makes a comment in support of her fellow nationalists

    -Several new projections, showing Lega again ahead of Forza, and a close race between 5 Star and the Right Coalition in both houses

  9. #8



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  11. #9

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    Truth is a social construct.

  12. #10

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    Potential outcomes

    • Centre-right coalition (Forza Italia/Northern League): This had been touted as a likely option heading into the election. However, that’d been under the assumption that Forza Italia would outperform the Northern League. Since this has not been the case, serious questions have been raised over the possibility of this partnership being formed as Berlusconi (Forza Italia) is unlikely to want to play junior to the Northern League or back its leader Matteo Salvini as a candidate for PM. Therefore, some serious compromises would need to be made in order for this option to go-ahead.
    • Grand coalition (Forza Italia/Democratic Party): Heading into the election, this had been touted as the most likely outcome. However, the below-par performance by the Democratic Party makes this option mathematically difficult without involving the support of one of the more radical parties; an unlikely outcome. Furthermore, the poor performance of the Democratic Party makes the prospect of a centre-left coalition unviable.
    • Populist Government (Five Star/Northern League/Brothers of Italy): Such a coalition would depend on the willingness of the Five Star Movement which at this stage appears to be unlikely (despite a recent softening of their opposition to coalitions) given their anti-establishment views. Furthermore, despite being of the populist mould, the coalition would hold fairly wide-ranging views.
    • Repeat elections: Should all of the above options fail, Italian voters would be sent back to the voting booths in an attempt to break the deadlock. During this period, the current Gentiloni government would operate on a caretaker basis but the ongoing political uncertainty would likely act as a negative to Italian assets.

    * * *

    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...rket-stability
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
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  13. #11

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    Matteo Renzi Resigns As Democratic Party Leader

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-03-05/matteo-renzi-will-resign-democratic-party-leader
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  14. #12

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    The big story in all this, I'd say, is that Lega has supplanted Forza as the main "conservative" party.

    i.e. nationalism triumphant

    ...and responsible for governing that mess, which should be entertaining.

    Next election, massive pendulum swing the other way, perhaps a bolshevik-type revolution.
    Last edited by r3volution 3.0; 03-05-2018 at 09:41 PM.

  15. #13

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    The League of 5-Star Gentlemen

    It looks like Five Star Movement will take more than 30% of the final tally, which is a couple of points above where polling had it tracking when the blackout went into effect two weeks ago.
    The bigger result is that of The League (formerly The Northern League) who came off their secessionist mountain and ran hard on a platform of euroskepticism and anti-immigration.
    The most important person in Italian politics right now is The League’s leader, Matteo “The EU can go F&%k itself” Salvini.
    When the final votes are revealed, if The League out-polled Silvio “Establishment Stalking Horse” Berlusconi’s Forza Italia! then he has the hammer in coalition negotiations.
    This is exactly the situation I was hoping for in this election. Because this paves the way for Salvini to pull out of the weak coalition with Berlusconi and form a stronger government with Five Star.
    And at that point the price of Tums in Germany rises sharply on new demand. Because the ‘agita’ over Italy’s untenable banking and debt situation will be enormous.
    But, if you want to know what the real issue is just look at this map of Italian unemployment.

    1% GDP growth is not something to cheer about when you have this kind of capital destruction for half of a country. And with the euro above $1.20, just like Germany wants it, this is only making it harder for Italy to compete in world markets.
    In other words, German strong-euro policy is creating the very election results now creating agita in Berlin.
    Forza Populism!

    Politicians are stupid.
    They don’t know anything about currency, capital flow or substitution effects… except when it feathers their nests. But, when a policy is inconvenient to them they invariably blame ‘the market’ which is another way of saying ‘blaming the people.’
    When the people rise up and vote to end their clown show they cry “Fascism!” or “Populism!”
    But this trend is in place all around Europe and it won’t end here. Next month Hungary goes to the polls. It’s leader Viktor Orban and his Fidesz party have the opportunity to grab a super-majority with coalition members and begin altering the Hungarian constitution to the desires of Hungarians, not the EU.
    Italy just gave Hungary a big boost of adrenaline to do just that. It also gave Poland an assist in resisting Angela Merkel’s crusade to crush Polish sovereignty for the second time by Germany in under a century.
    There comes a point where lying to your people doesn’t work anymore. They can see with their own eyes what’s happening and no amount of gaslighting via polls, economic statistics or Alinsky-style shame tactics works anymore.
    That’s what’s happening in Italy. And that’s the beginning of the end of the European Project.
    Debt Crisis! Dead Ahead!

    Right now the market has been lulled into a false sense of security by the ECB’s manipulation of bond yields via its asset purchasing program, i.e. QE. Five year Italian Credit Default Swap spreads are at a 6-month low thanks to a lack of concern about these election results.
    So far, there has been no knee-jerk reaction but that can and will change if Salvini and Five Star head Luigi Di Maio put their heads together and form a workable coalition.
    Because Italy’s banking system is more functionally insolvent than everyone else’s (by orders of magnitude) there will be a push by the market to resolve this situation.
    For months I’ve been warning you that that all we needed was a trigger to end this counter-trend rally in the euro and firm up the U.S. dollar.
    We’ve seen the rush into the euro while bond yields began rising a few months ago. This is an investor class moving to cash pre-positioning for a chaotic market. We’ll see a bit more of this while these results are digested and there is still hope for a Grand Coalition deal between Berlusconi’s center-right coalition and the failing Democrats.
    But, more likely is what I just laid out above. So, the next step will be the wholesale pulling out of assets from Europe once Salvini rejects a deal from Berlusconi and he and Di Maio form a government.
    And once that occurs, CDS rates will rise, bond yields (already under pressure from a tightening Fed) will rise as well and the next wave of the cycle can begin.
    Salvini knows the euro is the main source of Italy’s pain. He’s said as much. Now here’s the opportunity to heal Italy as a country and bring the North, where The League is strong, and the South, where Five Star is strong, together for an Italy which stands up to the depredations of a voracious EU bureaucracy.
    As I’ve pointed out multiple times, the German people have no desire to bail out Italy. They wouldn’t bail out Greece, a much smaller problem. They just voted for no bail-outs and are marching in the streets against more strain on their social fabric via Merkel’s immigration policy.
    So, the only path forward in Italy’s best interest is Salvini and Di Maio coming together and selling a showdown with Germany over the euro and debt relief. Once they move forward with reforms both Brussels and the IMF will not back the true face of the EU will be shown and I expect an already angry Italy will shift very quickly towards Italeave just like what happened in the U.K. with Brexit.


    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...y-forza-italia
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

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  16. #14

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    Russia Blamed For Italian Election Outcome

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-03-06/russia-blamed-italian-election-outcome
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  17. #15

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    In what's probably a nightmare scenario for the millions of Italians who supported left or center-left candidates, Forza Italia leader and former four-time prime minister Silvio Berlusconi has decided to support Matteo Salvini, the candidate of the euroskeptic Northern League, in his attempt to form a government after Euroskeptic and anti-establishment parties performed (once again) far better than expected.
    Italy's March 4 election was widely viewed as a victory for Berlusconi and the other members of his "center-right" coalition with two far-right parties. And now Berlusconi has confirmed that the coalition will unify behind the candidate of the anti-immigrant Norther League.

    Berlusconi's Forza Italia garnered just 14% of the vote compared with 17% for the North Northern League, and the members of the coalition had agreed before the vote to support whoever received the largest share. Before the vote, polls expected Forza Italia to win the largest share of the vote. Still, with a combined 37% of the vote total, the coalition still fell short of the 40% threshold needed to form a government, setting Italy up for a leadership showdown that could last for months.


    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...ext-government
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  18. #16

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    The leaders of Italy's main parties failed to form a new government in the first round of talks, the Wall Street Journal reported April 5. Italian President Sergio Mattarella said no party or coalition had the required support to secure a parliamentary majority.

    More at: https://worldview.stratfor.com/situa...overnment-fail
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment



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  20. #17

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    M5S leader Di Maio is pushing back against President Mattarella's appeal for the parties with the most parliamentary seats to support a "neutral" prime minister and government to run the country until fresh elections can be held early next year.
    Instead, Di Maio is sticking with the party's initial request to hold a second election as early as July.
    In a tweet, the five-star leader said "no one is responsible for a neutral government. Same as a technical government. Go for the vote in July!."
    Nessuna fiducia a un governo “neutrale”, sinonimo di governo tecnico. Si vada al voto a luglio!
    — Luigi Di Maio (@luigidimaio) May 7, 2018
    A twitter account associated with a Milanese chapter of the Northern League said it also opposed the "neutral" prime minister, saying the last time there was a technical government, it gave money away to troubled Italian lender Monte dei Paschi while repeatedly hiking taxes.
    L'ultimo governo tecnico ci ha regalato la Fornero, i soldi regalati a Monte dei paschi e tasse tasse e ancora tasse.
    No ad un governo tecnico! https://t.co/aj4a7ApwrF
    — Lega Nord Canegrate (@LNCanegrate) May 7, 2018
    Meanwhile, Forza Italia, the League's largest coalition partner, said it wouldn't immediately rule out Mattarella's suggestion, saying it would prefer to hold elections in the fall.
    Forza Italia non accantona l'idea proposta da Mattarella di sostenere un governo neutrale e propone di rinviare le urne anticipate in autunno proprio quando Berlusconi potrebbe tornare eleggibile.#maratonamentana #Quirinale #consultazioni
    — Antonio M. Fasulo (@fasulo_antonio) May 7, 2018
    That didn't take long at all.
    * * *

    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...arly-next-year
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  21. #18

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    In a statement published Wednesday night in Italy, flamboyant former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said he'd be open to an agreement between the League and the Five-Star Movement (otherwise known as M5S) to form a ruling coalition that wouldn't include his center-right party, Forza Italia.

    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...oalition-italy
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  22. #19

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    Five Star and Lega want another three days to conclude talks. Neither Di Maio nor Salvini would be Prime Minister.

    A reader informed me yesterday that Five Star was pro-Europe and not Eurosceptic.
    Compared to what?
    Certainly Five Star leader Luigi Di Maio is a far cry from former Five Star leader, Beppe Grillo. But some of that change in positioning was little more than political expediency to win votes.
    The platform now in the works includes a parallel currency, reduced immigration, and flat taxes.
    Eurointelligence Comments

    This is what real coalition negotiations look like. The leaders meet and set the agenda for sub-committees to talk about specific policy issues. That process will start in Italy tomorrow, when the deputy leaders of the two parties come together, but some of the outlines have already been drawn up by the leaders themselves.
    What do we know so far? Five Star and Lega are very different political parties, but they have enough in common for a radical legislative agenda. The two sides seem to be inching towards a neutral prime minister, in other words neither Di Maio nor Salvini. The name mentioned by Italian newspapers this morning is that of Giampiero Massolo, a career diplomat who seems to be acceptable to both parties. Massolo will clearly only be the frontman. Power will rest with Di Maio and Salvini.
    It will be interesting to see how the two sides will legislate together on issues that might affect Silvio Berlusconi personally. We don’t think he accepted to step aside and let Salvini run the show himself without any clandestine conditions. Any undertaking Salvini might have given him would be difficult for Five Star politically, though.
    Corriere della Sera lists the following as the main legislative priorities. If implemented it would be the biggest shake-up of the Italian economic system in modern times.
    Platform Provisions

    • The end of the pension reforms under Mario Monti; Five Star is softer on this point than Lega, but together the two parties can be expected to agree fundamental changes.
    • A flat tax on companies and people - in other words a massive tax reduction.
    • A study on the so-called minibot. This is a parallel currency based on future tax receipts, similar to the plans proposed by Yanis Varoufakis in Greece. The minibot was in the Lega’s election manifesto. Five Star is far less radical on the eurozone, having dropped the idea of a referendum, but also seeks changes that are incompatible with the the EU fiscal rules. A parallel currency stands a much greater chance of success in Italy, and it would go some way to solving the government’s fiscal dilemmas. The open question is whether it would constitute a slippery slope towards euro exit.
    • And a citizens’ income, which is Five Star’s big idea, to be implemented next year.

    EU's Worst Nightmare

    The Express describes the EU's Worst Nightmare as Eurosceptics Join Forces.
    One of the first things the two parties are likely to agree on will be to scrap a 2011 pension reform which raised the retirement age and required further hikes over time. Economists say repealing the law would cost 20 billion euros ($24 billion) a year, but opponents say it is unfair on ordinary Italians.
    Both parties also want to renegotiate the EU's fiscal rules to allow Italy to spend more. 5-Star has rowed back on a pledge to hold a referendum on Italy's membership of the eurozone, but the League still calls the euro a "flawed currency" and wants to exit it as soon as is politically feasible.
    Setting up a possible institutional clash in Italy, President Mattarella made clear on Thursday that he did not want to see any confrontation with Brussels.
    "To think that one can go-it-alone in Europe is knowingly deceptive in front of public opinion," Mattarella said in a pointedly pro-European speech at a conference on the state of the European Union in the central town of Fiesole.
    Major Changes

    President Mattarella can make all the pro-Europe noises he wants, but other than force new elections which would likely give Five Star and Lega a bigger majority, there is little he can do.
    Major changes are coming but there is no way to pay for them.
    Flat taxes and a tax reduction are good ideas. A guaranteed income is a bad idea, but it's on the way.
    Both parties are staunchly anti-immigration.
    A parallel currency is indeed a stepping stone to a break from the Eurozone.

    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...allel-currency
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  23. #20

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    As the WSJ details, the two parties struck a deal Sunday evening on a pact that would underpin a government coalition between the two.
    Leaders of the two groups, however, are still negotiating the members of a government cabinet, including the prime minister. An announcement of those names should come early this week, according to weekend statements by leaders of both groups.
    With the general agreement now reached, leaders of 5 Star and League will meet on Monday with Italy's President Sergio Mattarella, who will guide the formation of a new government. And while the coalition must then win votes in both houses of parliament, that shouldn't be a problem as the League and 5 Star together enjoy a comfortable majority in each house.
    Meanwhile, as we described earlier, the coalition agreement includes measures such as a universal basic income for the unemployed, a rock-bottom flat tax and the revocation of a sweeping pension reform introduced in 2011.
    * * *

    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...ent-government
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  24. #21

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    An agreement reached today between M5S and Lega contains an explosive request: Debt Cancellation!

    Rumors last night the coalition was about to collapse seem to be false. Explosive details emerge today as noted in these Tweets.
    1) Five Star and the League expect the @ecb to forgive 250 billion euros in Italian bonds bought via quantitative easing, in order to bring down Italy's debt
    — Ferdinando Giugliano (@FerdiGiugliano) May 15, 2018
    Details

    1. Five Star and the League expect the ECB to forgive 250 billion euros in Italian bonds bought via quantitative easing, in order to bring down Italy's debt
    2. The two parties want to re-open European Treaties and to "radically reform" the stability and growth pact. The coalition would also want to reconsider Italy's contribution to the EU budget.
    3. According to @HuffPostItalia, the 5 Star/League draft agreement would include an opt-out mechanism to leave the euro in an "agreed manner" were there to be a "clear popular will" to do so.
    4. The draft document says Italy should stay in Nato, but asks for an immediate withdrawal of sanctions vs Russia, so that Moscow can return to be a "strategic partner" in conflict zones
    5. According to @HuffPostItalia, the 5 Star/League draft document says there would be a "flat tax"... but with several tax rates and deductions
    6. taly's pension reform would be dismantled: workers would be able to retire when the sum of their retirement age and years of contribution is at least 100.
    7. The draft coalition agreement of a 5 Star/Lega government leaked to @HuffPostItalia calls for a revision of the Dublin regulation on immigration and for compulsory relocation of asylum seekers across the EU
    8. The draft coalition agreement of a 5 Star/Lega government leaked to @HuffPostItalia calls for a revision of the Dublin regulation on immigration and for compulsory relocation of asylum seekers across the EU

    This cannot possibly fly, but that's the platform.
    Yesterday, Italian President Sergio Mattarella warned Lega and Five Star against an anti-EU platform.
    Last night, there were rumors the coalition would collapse.
    Today we see this agreement as outlined on Huffington Italy and as described above.
    Addendum

    Ferdi Guigliano who made the above translations now posts this:
    +++ The 5 Star Movement and the League have just issued a joint statement saying that this is an "old" version of the coalition agreement, which has been abundantly revised, for example making it clear that Italy would stay in the euro (h/t @adealdis @ARoldering)
    — Ferdinando Giugliano (@FerdiGiugliano) May 15, 2018
    I do not know what the revised deal includes.
    Addendum Two

    Draft confirmed except for exit of Euro
    M5S e Lega confermano la bozza e fanno marcia indietro sull'euro https://t.co/yf7db5sEU9
    — L'HuffPost (@HuffPostItalia) May 15, 2018
    PD calls proposal irresponsible

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...0-billion-debt
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  25. #22

    Default

    Italy's two-and-a-half month stalemate is finally coming to an end, and according to unnamed Bloomberg and Reuters sources, the leaders of Italy's populist Five Star movement and Northern League have agreed on a final government program, one which to the market's relief does not include a request to write down €250BN in debt held by the ECB.
    ... or maybe not: shortly after the flashing read headlines hit, the League said the government deal is not final, and nor is there a deal on premiership. Meanwhile, Italy's Ansa newswire reported that according to its sources, a final government plan has not been sealed yet, and that negotiations are still ongoing on govt program and on the name of candidate prime minister.
    In any case, here's a summary of what we know so far courtesy of Bloomberg:

    • Populist parties Five Star and the League have a deal on a program to form a coalition government, according to a party official, while news agency ANSA says the plan is not final
    • Still no word on who will be nominated as prime minister
    • The parties want to canvas their voters before presenting it to Italy's president for approval
    • The program calls for increased fiscal spending, tax cuts and reviewing international agreements
    • It does not include a proposal to write off billions of government debt held by the ECB, as per an earlier draft
    • Investors are wary of a radical shake-up in an EU founding member, with the yield premium to German bonds the widest since January

    In a meeting in the Palazzo Montecitorio, Matteo Salvini and Luigi di Maio, the leaders of the League and M5S, respectively, are trying to decide who will be the next prime minister of Italy.
    Meanwhile, the leaks about the government's policy program appeared to dull concerns about a possible Italeave.
    And while initial reports of a deal raised hopes, Five Star officials later denied that an agreement had been reached, leading to widespread confusion about the status of a deal.

    • ITALY'S 5-STAR, LEAGUE PROGRAMME CONTAINS NOTHING THAT COULD CAUSE CONCERN OVER ITALY'S EURO MEMBERSHIP: RTRS
    • ITALY POPULIST LEADERS AGREE ON POLICY PROGRAM: ANSA
    • FIVE STAR, LEAGUE AGREE FINAL GOVERNMENT PROGRAM: OFFICIAL

    Still, it appears that most outstanding items have been resolved:

    • FIVE STAR'S DI MAIO: WE STILL DON'T HAVE PRIME MINISTER
    • FIVE STAR'S DI MAIO: THE LARGEST PART OF ISSUES SOLVED

    Meanwhile, as Bloomberg adds, president Mattarella's office has made no secret of the fact that he is not amused -- by Di Maio and Salvini starting with the program and dealing with the premiership only afterwards.
    For Mattarella, it's putting the cart before the horse -- the ``proper'' procedure is for Mattarella to name a premier first, then he brings a list of ministers and his government plan back to the president.
    While some hoped this added clarity would stabilize European assets, Italian BTPs continue to selloff, and the 10Y Italian yield was trading around 2.16%, as concerns over the parties' anti-European sentiment trumps the fact that some agreement has been reached after all; meanwhile the Italian-German spread remains at the widest levels since January.


    Update 0850ET: While confusion continues to reign in its imitable Italian way, Bloomberg's Ferdinando Giugliano notes that while we can only speculate over what issues still divide the League and the 5 Star Movement, we know from a leaked draft what separated them yesterday:

    • How much the government should be allowed to borrow to fund spending plans?
    • New income-tax rates?
    • Whether and how to regulate places of worship, including mosques?
    • What constraints (if any) should be set to a new income-support scheme?
    • Whether to scrap the balanced budget clause in Italy's constitution?
    • Whether to scrap some controversial railway infrastructure projects in Northern Italy?

    These all seems like very major issues from our perspective, which may explain this... the blast from the past PIIGS credit risk is starting to crack notably wider...


    * * *

    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...licy-agreement
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

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    A Zero Hedge comment

  26. #23

    Default

    The "populists" want more spending (and more inflation to finance it)?

    I'm shocked I tells ya...

  27. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    The "populists" want more spending (and more inflation to finance it)?

    I'm shocked I tells ya...
    Socialism is almost unopposed in Europe, that's part of how their political culture is much worse than ours.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment



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  29. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Socialism is almost unopposed in Europe, that's part of how their political culture is much worse than ours.
    The elites claim uncle Sam endorses socialism. This makes the sale easier. It is actually true if you watch the movies made in Hollywood.
    Truth is a social construct.

  30. #26

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Socialism is almost unopposed in Europe, that's part of how their political culture is much worse than ours.
    No European state is actually socialist in the strict sense of the term.

    They all have expensive welfare systems and highly intrusive economic regulations, like the US.

    Some are more socialistic than the US, some less. Overall, the difference is fairly minor.

    Not too long ago, we discussed this in relation to Sweden. I cited various economic freedom indices to prove the point.

  31. #27

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    No European state is actually socialist in the strict sense of the term.

    They all have expensive welfare systems and highly intrusive economic regulations, like the US.

    Some are more socialistic than the US, some less. Overall, the difference is fairly minor.

    Not too long ago, we discussed this in relation to Sweden. I cited various economic freedom indices to prove the point.
    The difference is that here we have people who oppose socialism, over there nobody does.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  32. #28

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The difference is that here we have people who oppose socialism, over there nobody does.
    Have you heard of Nigel Farage?
    Truth is a social construct.

  33. #29

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by timosman View Post
    Have you heard of Nigel Farage?
    Individuals are not the issue, no significant constituency in Europe opposes socialism.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankindÖitís people I canít stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  34. #30

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    The difference is that here we have people who oppose socialism, over there nobody does.
    Of course there are, but, just as in the US, they aren't numerous/influential enough to have much effect.

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