Italy: The Moon Bug

Through Italy's autunno caldo (hot autumn), some 5,000,000 workers walked off their jobs—traffic cops, bus drivers, postmen, teachers, garbage collectors, steel and auto workers, even casino croupiers. Newspapers took to printing daily "strike calendars," and by telephoning 85 85 45, beleaguered Italians could hear a recorded message informing them which walkouts were on for that day. Last week, however, one group of workers took the unusual step of calling off a scheduled 72-hour strike. They were employees of the Italian Red Cross, and they were desperately needed to help out in the country's latest disaster —a flu epidemic.

Some Italians dubbed...

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