FROM Beppe Severgnini
Can a Divided Europe Save Its Common Currency? America's economic future will depend in part on what happens in Europe, so the crisis over the Euro demands our attention. The Eurozone is divided between prosperous countries like France -- and especially Germany — and debtor nations, including Greece, and now Italy. The strong are needed to bail out the weak, but so far there's not enough trust for the strong to provide big money or the weak to accept austerity. Can un-elected European technocrats, trained on Wall Street, overcome the politics of independent nations? Why is it all so important to the United States?
Is Italy's Economy Too Big to Fail, but Too Big to Bail Out? When it comes to the troubled economies of the Euro Zone, "contagion" is what economists, bankers, traders and political leaders fear most. Now the focus has shifted from Greece to Italy. Greece at least appears to be getting its economic act together, but Berlusconi's Italy is another matter. We hear about the billionaire Prime Minister who's promising to resign, and what Italy's potential bankruptcy could mean for the rest of the world.
Greece Has Been Scary Enough, Now There's Italy When it comes to the troubled economies of the Eurozone, "contagion" is what economists, bankers, traders and political leaders fear most. Now the focus has shifted from Greece to Italy. Greece now has a unity government led by a banking technocrat pledged to avoid bankruptcy, however unpopular austerity measures might be. Italy has an economy almost triple the size of Greece, Portugal and Ireland combined, with a massive debt it might not be able to pay. Its shaky economy is the creature of Prime Minister Berlusconi, one of the world's most colorful leaders. Will he really get out of the way? We get a taste of Italian politics today and hear what a national bankruptcy would mean for world markets and American banks.
Wife Gets Pubic Apology for Berlusconi's Roving Eye We seldom talk about politicians' personal lives, but some stories are just irresistible. Today, it's the amazing behavior of Silvio Berlusconi and his wife, Veronica Lario. As he is wont to do, the former Italian Prime Minister flirted publicly with a couple of beautiful women. His wife demanded an apology, in a letter on the front page of La Repubblica . Astonishingly, Berlusconi complied--with a letter to the same paper. Beppe Severgnini, columnist for another Italian daily, La Bella Figura .
Marital Spat, Italian-Style: Wife Gets Apology for Berlusconi's Roving Eye Italy's former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is a notorious womanizer. At a public awards ceremony last week, the 70 year-old billionaire told four young and beautiful women, "If I weren't already married, I would marry you right now." That was too much for Berlusconi's wife of 27 years, Veronica Lario, who excoriated him on the front page of the newspaper La Repubblica . Beppe Severgnini is columnist for another Italian daily, Corriere Della Sera .
White House budget proposal slashes and burns President Trump's first budget request is considered dead on arrival in Congress — a familiar development in Capitol Hill. We hear what it reveals about the priorities of the new administration. What's likely to die… and what might survive?
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Janesville and the American Dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn’t prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. On this Memorial Day rebroadcast of To the Point, we hear what’s happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.