ITALY: Social Insecurity

For the ordinary Italian worker, whose weekly salary all goes for rent and pasta, the only hope for retirement is a pension —meager at best and by no means automatic. If he is privately employed, his fate is in the hands of a monstrous, Kafkaesque government bureau whose paper-shuffling overhead is so high that a man whose employer has paid in $15,000 on his behalf over a 30-year period will receive only $3,000 of it when he retires. The one Italian worker in eight who is a government employee fares somewhat better: provided...

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