The taxi drivers and the Don Abbondio. Gualtieri and Fontana have a problem with taxis

The taxi drivers and the Don Abbondio.  Gualtieri and Fontana have a problem with taxis


The great tourist migrations return with the summer, and bring to the surface the pity and the fury, the excruciating sadness, the disgust, the metaphysical anxieties linked to all mass phenomena. Together, of course, with the disappearance of taxis from Milan and Rome. Queues of residents and pilgrims, children in tears, old women with palpitation, young people in slippers with sweat at their temples and red eyes wait in front of the Termini stations and the Milan Central Station. Taxi? There are none. On the street, the conquest of one of these white cars gives rise to wild outreach, abuse, abject pleas, heroism worthy of a medal of valor. So, in Milan, Mayor Sala first proposed dual driving, i.e. he thought of allowing taxi drivers’ relatives to drive taxis too, to have more cars available. But having acknowledged that a few dozen cars have adhered to the proposal, on Tuesday he asked for the issue of a thousand new licenses. A thousand new cars. A thousand new taxis. In Rome, a city where not even the subway works (and we won’t make a list of buses and trams), the mayor Roberto Gualtieri, a placid gentleman equipped for action roughly as an average Zulu would be for psychiatry, he too decided for the double guide. Copying from Sala. But he copied it with some delay, so to speak. Almost a month later. That is, just when Sala has already understood that it doesn’t work. And in fact the thing, precisely, doesn’t work in Milan, and obviously it doesn’t work in Rome either. Reason why the mayor of the capital, one who for more than a year has yet to redistribute 150 licenses of deceased or suspended taxi drivers, always reminds us of Napoleon: of that Gualtieri the lightning kept behind the flash. But don’t think, the reader, that things are going better in Milan. If Rome has the lively and courageous Gualtieri, Milan has the lively and fearless Attilio Fontana, president of the region. It is he who must authorize the thousand licenses requested by Mayor Sala. And to the request, mind you, he replied like this: “Let me see this request. Then I’ll talk to the mayor about it. I don’t know if the number is fair. I also have to do an examination of the elements available “. One of these elements, on which we imagine he intends to investigate at length, we offer him immediately: in Milan there are 3.60 taxis per 1,000 inhabitants, while in Barcelona there are 6.49 taxis per 1,000 inhabitants. In short, faced with the taxi question, Fontana from Lombardy and Gualtieri from Rome are like the inhabitants of those Mexican villages during their siesta hours. And there is to understand them. Do you know the taxi drivers? Not even Mario Draghi, the man described as an expression of the global strong powers, NATO, the IMF and the World Bank, has managed to make a minimal reform of the taxis. Those already in 2006, 2012 and 2017 had besieged Palazzo Chigi for much less. Therefore Fontana and Gualtieri, with their displays of caution, delicacies, little coughs, forward hands and feet of lead, must be understood. On the other hand, one did not even want to be president of the region while the other would have preferred not to be a candidate for mayor. And now more than Dante’s figure of the slothful, these two poor administrators refer us to the national-popular spectrum of Don Abbondio. To the well-known phenomenon of tremarella so dear to Manzoni.

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