Italy's New Prime Minister

on Tuesday, April 15, 2008

As you have more than likely heard by now Silvio Berlusconi has won the Italian elections and will serve AGAIN as Prime Minister of Italy. This will be Berlusconi's third time as Prime Minister.

Silvio Berlusconi is one of Italy's richest men. His man company is Mediaset which is made up of three national television channels. Then there's Arnoldo Mondadori, Italy's largest publishing house. He also owns the popular football (soccer) club AC Milan.

Do I think Silvio Berlusconi will be a good Prime Minister the third time around? I highly doubt it. Like ANY politician, no matter where, they are all talk and no action for the common person. One piece of legislation from one of Berlusconi's previous governments was the reform of the labor system, called "legge Biagi", promoting labor flexibility for new workers which lead to a record-low unemployment level. Yet at the same time, this Biagi law is one of the causes of the "uncertain job" problem affecting many people.

What is an "uncertain job" you ask? An uncertain job is basically a temporary job, with for example a six-month contract. In Italy it is difficult to find a job with a permanent contract. How is the Italian economy supposed to go forward and improve when one lives from one temporary job to the next.

Italy in my opinion needs a government with interests for the common people. Improve working conditions, wages and contracts. Reduce the number of politicians in Rome and decrease their salaries, investing the money saved into Education, Health Care and research, aim at keeping young, intelligent and creative minds in Italy, not forcing them to go abroad in order to earn an honest living in their chosen field. Italy and Italians have great potential but are limited by a government that only looks out after itself and not its citizens.

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2008 Italian Elections

on Monday, April 14, 2008

Today I voted for the first time as an Italian citizen. What struck me as odd/strange is when we went to vote was that there were two lines, one for men and the other for women. I asked my husband as to why, his response was that it has always been that way. Other than that oddity voting was rather painless. This election is federal and also local elections. The ballots are different, in the sense that basically just shows the symbol of each political party that is running and you put an x mark through the party you want to vote for.

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The Museum Club, Flagstaff Arizona

on Wednesday, April 09, 2008

The Museum Club is located on Route 66, The Mother Road, in Flagstaff Arizona. While in the States back in February I had the honor of visiting such an interesting and haunted place.

Why is The Museum Club such an interesting place you ask? Let's just say it has a haunted history. I had read a story or two about The Museum Club before going on my trip, but that was just the tip of the iceberg so to speak. I read several stories, just mentioning about two ghosts, of a couple that used to own the bar back in the 1950's.

I got to talking with the bar manager and asked her if the stories I had read where true, about the place being haunted. Her response, oh yes and then some.

The Museum Club is a two-storey building. On the main floor there is the bar and dance floor and on the 2nd floor an apartment and ex-bordello. The couple that owned the bar back in the 1950's, the wife went upstairs to retire for the evening, fell down the stairs and broke her neck. She fell into a coma and died shortly after. Her husband, unable to deal with his wife's death, even 2 years after the fact, shot himself in front of the fireplace located in the entrance of the bar.

Each corner of the dance floor in The Museum Club has a dead tree, from floor to ceiling. One has bullet holes from gun fights from years gone by. Another used to be used to hang people from. This tree happens to be in front of the back bar that dates back to the late 1800's. The bar manager showed me a photo of this area, one can see a ghost hanging from the tree.

I highly suggest checking out The Museum Club in Flagstaff Arizona. If you go, don't forget your camera and remember to take plenty of photos of the interior!

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South Dakota Primaries

The South Dakota presidential primaries will take place on June 3rd, 2008. Who am I voting for? That I have not decided as of yet. I do not blog about politics or try to avoid doing so, whether it is American or Italian politics. This time is an exception, so do not worry this blog is not going to become one of the SEVERAL political blogs in the blogosphere.

Within the last week I have been asked at least on two occasions who I am going to vote for in the Primaries, whether for Hilary Clinton, Barack Obama, John McCain or Ron Paul. The lady that runs the green grocer across the street from my home even "suggested" that I vote Democrat, in her opinion the United States is ready and needs a change. Whether it would be the first woman president or first president of color. I agree wholeheartedly, that the United States of America needs a "first" president, but at the same time that "first" president needs to stand for change, change for the people not about corporations. I am proud to be an American but I am ashamed of what the current and recent past administrations have done to my and my fellow American's country. The United States of America has turned into The United Corporations of America. Whatever happened to Thomas Jefferson's America?

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The Black Forest

on Monday, April 07, 2008

Returned last night from spending the weekend in The Black Forest in Germany and watching a soccer (football) match in Basel Switzerland.  The match was Basel versus AC Bellinzona.  Basel won 3-1.

What were able to see of The Black Forest was absolutely beautiful.  We stayed at the Pension Vogelbacher which is near a little village called St. Blasien.  We were unable to do a lot of touring of the area due to having to be in Basel Switzerland by noon yesterday and we arrived late Saturday evening near St. Blasien. 

We arrived to the Pension Vogelbacher near St. Blasien Germany late Saturday night about 7pm due to being stuck in traffic in the German part of Switzerland because of a truck turning over in the Gotthard Road Tunnel.  We had to sit in traffic for over an hour.  The St. Gotthard Tunnel is the 3rd longest road tunnel in the world, just under 16.4 kilometers (10.5 miles).  The Gotthard has two lanes, one going each direction.  It's only 10.5 miles, but when you're a bit claustrophobic those 10.5 miles seem like 100!  Then on the way home last night, no accidents thankfully but ran into quite a bit of snow and a thunderstorm.

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