Italy: Et Tu, Garibaldi

"Henceforth, not only the prosperity of the Italians is in danger but their very freedom," fumed Bestselling Author (and Deputy) Luigi Barzini in the weekly L'Europeo last week. He was denouncing not a new law but an institution that has been tightening its hold on Italian life for centuries: the nation's cumbersome bureaucracy.

Today, 50 million Italians spend much of their lives filling out official forms. Permission in triplicate (as a minimum) is required for practically anything: installing electricity in one's house in Rome, 21 different applications; exporting textiles, 200. One Rome resident reported that getting auto license plates took...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!