Italians are very proud of their journalists, and they have right to be. Previously I’ve dissed continentals who turn up their noses at American “cultural imperialism” (as if we force our cultural output on the world), and noted that Italian culture hasn’t accomplished anything of real relevance in the past 200 years. So here’s an exception: Italian journalism. Italian journalists are almost like celebrities here, regardless of their political positions. My very left wing friends love right wing journalists, and vice versa (sample: “Lui e’ di sinistra, ma bravissimo comunque”). The very fact that journalist’s political positions are freely divulged is a huge difference from their American counterparts. That Helen Thomas pretends she’s immune to partisanship is just absurd–I much prefer the Italian version.
Today I found a post at A Conservative Mind, a great Italian blog, noting the same thing, by way of MSNBC’s Dog Bites Man news item of this week:
MSNBC.com identified 143 journalists who made political contributions from 2004 through the start of the 2008 campaign, according to the public records of the Federal Election Commission. Most of the newsroom checkbooks leaned to the left: 125 journalists gave to Democrats and liberal causes. Only 16 gave to Republicans. Two gave to both parties.
Post scriptum. Tranquilli, in Italia è diverso. Simili cose qui non succedono, della dignità professionale si ha un altro concetto. Un giornalista non darebbe mai i suoi soldi ai politici. Figuriamoci. Semmai se li farebbe dare. Formato cash, formato consulenza o formato posto di lavoro in Rai.
Post-post scriptum. A proposito di Stati Uniti e di establishment liberal: applausi per Rudy.
Translation of Italian, by me:
P.S. Don’t worry, in Italy it’s different. Thinks like this don’t happen, one has another concept of professional dignity here. A journalist would never give his money to politicians. Don’t worry about it. In form of cash, in form of consultance, or in the form of a position at RAI (media conglomerate in Italy).
PPS. Speaking of the US’s liberal establishment, applause for Rudy.
me: they looooove Rudy here.
It is not often that I meet new people here. Every once in a while I’ll meet someone’s roommate. The other night I went to a party and met some new people. But in general my friends and I stick together and we’re not big on parties and socializing. I’m blessed with sweet friends who are shut-ins like me.
The other evening I went to the hometown of a friend of mine, a half hour drive from my home. We were a group of four, two foreigners and two hometown boys. Every time we ran into a hometown friend, I was introduced thusly: “This is our American friend!” I was a bit embarassed by this at first, as I’ve had experiences in the past with self-righteous non-Americans being rude to me once they discovered my nationality, as if they can right the world’s wrongs with bad manners. Nothing like that happened, and as the night wore on and I was introduced over and over I realized my friends were quite proud to have an exotic and worldly species like me by their sides. Which I find so amusing–my life is anything but exotic or dramatic.
Okay, I’m coming out. Maybe it doesn’t count on a blog where my identity is anonymous. And, let’s be honest, probably the only person who looks at my blog is my mom (hey, send money!) and she knows who I am. That being said, on the chance that someone else (like…my mom’s friends?) cares, I’m coming out of the closet as a Right Wing America Lover.
I miss America. It is really nice here in Italy, as you can probably imagine, but home is home. I REALLY miss american culture. And I have no patience for euroweenies, and I’m surrounded by them. The other night my friend Mirko (italian) said, ‘are you sure that al quaeda really exists? it seems sort of far-fetched.’ I handled it well, I think, calmly pointing out that if he lived in a country like Spain or France or Britain or the Netherlands or the US, where there have been attacks and overt threats, he would feel differently, and certain things would become apparent to him. But inside I died a small death. I don’t get outwardly mad at these things, as my nature is generally tranquilla, but it weighs heavily on my mind. It is terrible to think of all these otherwise bright, sweet, intelligent people contributing, in my mind, to the fall of the West.
A lot of my friends tease me about american things. My girlfriends will tease me when we see some american girl dressed in some insanely awful way. That doesn’t bother me, I find it very amusing myself. My politically minded friends tease me about bush, about foreign policy, about obesity, about mcdonalds and big stores and all the rest. That really does bother me, though I know I shouldn’t let it. I’d like to make some pointed comment about how my culture contributes in a hugely positive way to arts, literature, global economy, technology, and the general sweep of worldwide ideas. Italian culture? what has it produced in the past 100 years? or the past 500? orianna fallaci, francesco clemente, sandro chia, fabrizio quattrocchi. e basta. oh, and fellini, who I actually don’t like, but I know some people really do. Yes, the food is fantastic, but if the best thing a culture’s got is culinary delights, I call that simple, suicidal decadence. Anyway, I usually don’t say anything because i don’t want to have that discussion, it’s not fun for me.
i’m going to try and be more diligent about posting. from now on. starting today.