Italians react to Berlusconi's exit and Italy's debt crisis

Demonstrators wearing masks of Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi (R) and the leader of the Northern League Umberto Bossi pose with placards reading 'Silvio, change the panorama' during a demonstration 'Reconstruction. For the name of the Italian people' organized by the let-wing Democratic Party (PD) on Nov. 5, 2011 in Rome.

Kai Ryssdal: We wanted to get some real voices from Italy in the show today, so we sent Stephen Beard out on the streets of Rome for us, to get some sound. We figured though, that regular voiceovers wouldn't be any fun, so we got our resident polyglot and foreign editor John Buckley in the studio to translate for us.

John, here you go, here's the first piece of tape that Stephen got.

Italian speaking

He doesn't mince his words there, does he, Mr. Roger Nicortera. What does he say?

John Buckley: He's saying that he's happy that Berlusconi's gone; he thinks it's about time. But he says that the blame for the present crisis goes beyond Berlusconi -- it's part of a wider problem in Italy of cronyism. And he says that now there's the opportunity to make some choices and people can tackle these problems of bad government.

Ryssdal: OK, here's another piece of tape: Cornelia Monteano.

Italian speaking

I got that first bit, 'it goes well,' right?

Buckley: She too is pleased that Mr. Berlusconi's on the way out. She also says, though, that it doesn't change anything. She says changing the government won't change the situation; things will still be the same. And in a rather sinister way here, she says we'll still be directed by a world government.

Ryssdal: Yeah. OK, Adriana Ricotta is the next.

Italian speaking

Sounds like a woman of a certain age.

Buckley: A lady of a certain age, who's of the view that this is a global problem, not just an Italian one. She says the problem kicked off in America, and then spread to Greece and then Italy and everywhere else. She interestingly said that we have to change the way, that the Italians have to change the way they do things.

Ryssdal: All right, the last one, it's a quickie I think.

Italian speaking

Fortuna Rossi is her name -- what'd she say?

Buckley: She says we were better off when we had the lira.

Ryssdal: And there you go. That kind of sums it up in a nutshell, doesn't it?

Buckley: I think that's about right.

Ryssdal: John Buckley, our foreign editor. John, thank you.

Buckley: Thank you Kai.

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