The mainstream media in Europe is having a field day attacking and ridiculing Beppe Grillo’s 5-star movement. The Economist recently labelled him a clown on its front cover. Broadcasters across the continent are tarring him with the brush of populism.
Like schoolyard children, the newspapers here in Spain laugh smugly at his bedragled appearance. The reasoning is simple: the guy has crazy hair, a bushy beard and doesn’t even wear a tie, so how could he possibly aspire to represent his fellow people?
But this frenzy of bitching is hiding something far more important: fear! The central planners-in-chief are suddenly very afraid, and for good reason. You see, whatever might be said about Pepe Grillo, he is a shrewd political thinker. After all, he has spent the last three decades lampooning the very politicians he is now challenging in parliament.
In the space of just three years, he and his associates have built up a powerful political movement that now represents the largest party in the Italian parliament. And unlike so many other false-dawn movements, the 5-Star party seems unwilling to budge on the important issues.
But the main reason Grillo is causing serious heart palpitations for the powers-that-be, both inside Italy and across the European continent, is that he understands what lies at the root of most of our problems and is unafraid to speak up about it:
“Whom does the money belong to? Who does its ownership belong to? To the State fine…then to us, we are the State. You know that the State doesn’t exist, it is only a legal entity. WE are the state, then the money is ours…fine. Then let me know one thing. If the money belongs to us…Why…do they lend it to us??”
The above is a quote from a 1998 stand-up show Grillo took around Italy. Unlike most run-of-the-mill political satirists, Grillo’s has for years set his sights beyond the bumbling politicians and their corrupt ways to the very core of the problems we face: the system itself.
So, before you read another article or watch another stage-managed news report lampooning Beppe Grillo’s “populist threat,” I urge you to watch the two clips below (English subtitles begin 2 minutes in), taken from Grillo’s 1998 Soft Apocalypse Tour.
The Italian Genie, it seems, is out of the bottle and no amount of state-orchestrated scare mongering is going to put him back in.