ITALY: Deflation

In Rome an astonished carabinieri officer blinked, gasped, began to count. Never had he seen so many pregnant romanas trudging back from visits to the countryside. He remembered Mussolini and his medals for motherhood. But Il Duce was gone. Could it be that his works were marching on? The suspicious carabiniere decided to investigate, uncovered a widespread fraud. In fitted containers under their clothes the "pregnant" women were delivering olive oil to Rome's black-market buyers. A few days of prenatal checkups yielded ten tons of oil.

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