Bank robbery, Italian style: The Fiscal Fascists are back and hungry for your money
Not much is ever really new in either economics or politics. So Italy’s nuovo Duce Mario Monte is retracing the footsteps of a man that he probably worships as one of his saintly heroes.
Almost 90 years ago il primo Duce, Benito Mussolini, installed a certain Alberto De Stefani, a rather colorless and acerbic statistician, to sort out the Italian economy.
Today we would say that De Stefani, like Mario Monti, was a Friedmanite. This means a disciple of the nation-wrecking Chicago school of economics associated with its shark-fanged progenitor, the late Milton Friedman.
The Chicago School is a black hole of untrammeled capitalism explored to the ultimate boundaries, swallowing entire nations while stoking the forces of neofascism.
There is no record of a successful demonstration of Friedmanism, unless you rate the murder of the elected Chilean prime minister Salvador Allende, and destruction of both the economy and democracy in Chile in the 1970’s as some kind of success in a bleak obverse sense.
Il Duce Monti’s austerity program that just received rapturous applause from Italy’s so recently relegated politicians is such an exact copy of Alberto de Stefani’s miracle plan back in the 1920’s, the old boy might well have come back from the grave bearing the original tablet.