Choice passage about Berlusconi's departure
I heard last night that Berlusconi had finally stepped down his premiership in Italy. This last passage is pretty surreal:
All day, crowds took to the streets in front of parliament as Berlusconi prepared to put an end to the most extraordinary career in the politics of modern Europe. The Berlusconi era began 17 years ago with Forza Italia!, a party named after a football chant, and ended in the lurid murk of "bunga bunga" parties and alleged juvenile prostitution.
With his genius for communication and readiness to make extravagantly implausible promises, Berlusconi secured for himself a place in history as Italy's longest-serving leader since the country's fascist dictator, Benito Mussolini. He long outlasted his early counterparts: when he first held office John Major was Britain's prime minister and Bill Clinton the US president.