A Scandalous Ad Campaign Takes Aim at Italy's Problems


CERVELLI, FUGGITE CON NOI    easyJet

That roughly translates as: "Brains (i.e. you the clever intellectuals, the trained experts), ESCAPE WITH US", the ad (photographed here on the back of a Roman taxi) is signed: easyJet.

Yes, escape from Italy, the country is in recession, it's a mess, get out of it!

How can EasyJet, a low-cost British airline carrier, dare do this? 

Is the UK so much better off than Italy?

Okay, it's doing better than Italy right now but it certainly has problems of its own and is in no position to teach anything to anyone.

I am shocked. 

True, Italy has been suffering from a serious brain drain for years and small wonder. If you're a young Italian and thinking of a start-up, everything goes against you, starting with the cost of the paperwork you must do with a notary public, € 3,000 plus a €2,500 deposit in a bank. Plus the tax on business which is one of the highest in the world, 45 percent.  Plus the cost of social security and the fact that you can never fire anybody which means you think twice before you hire anybody. Plus the lack of investment in research and infrastructure, which is why eggheads go abroad to work in well-equipped labs.

I could go on and on. But honestly, to base an ad campaign on a country's deeply entrenched problems of brain drain? Not pretty.

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