IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Berlusconi to poor Italians: Make more money

Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s recommendation for Italians trying to escape poverty: do it my way and earn more money.
/ Source: Reuters

Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s recommendation for Italians trying to escape poverty: do it my way and earn more cash.

Asked in a television interview late on Monday what the government could do to help a worker earning only $1,793 a month, Italy’s richest man said: “The answer of Berlusconi the businessman is, try to earn more.”

He then launched into an account of how he scraped together his first earnings that laid the foundation for his media empire, by helping out at a local market and by collecting paper in the street, scrunching it up into balls and reselling it to people who used it to light their stoves.

“When someone gave me a camera, I used it to take pictures at funerals, weddings and I took portraits,” he added in an interview with northern Italian Telelombardia.

Berlusconi’s popularity has suffered as his country is struggling to pull out of an economic slump and opinion polls show his center-right bloc trailing the center-left coalition led by Romano Prodi ahead of a national election in April.