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SILVIO BERLUSCONI - Italian entrepreneur and politician

He was born in Milan on september 29, 1936). After a highly successful entrepreneurial actions, starting from the 60s in real estate and in the 80s in the media (television and publishing), he entered politics in 1994, giving birth to a movement that Forza Italia, in an alliance of centre, won the elections taking it to the government. Lost subsequent consultations in 1996 but won the 2001 with a new coalition, the House of Freedom (Casa delle Libertà), and was President of the Council of government the one who lasted longer in the history of the republic. Then he lost the 2006 elections for a few votes. Since 2008 he has been reappointed President of the Council, a position from which he resigned in 2011, and since 2009 he is chairman of the party he founded People of Freedom (Popolo della Libertà).

LIFE AND ACTIVITIES

He is the son of a bank official, who graduated from law school. He began his business in the construction and real estate, founding in 1961 the company Cantieri Riuniti Milanesi SpA in 1963 Edilnord. Between 1969 and 1976 outlined the project and came to the construction of two residential districts of modern conception, Milan 2 and Milan 3, characterised by the high quality of services offered. Soon began the diversification of its activities, which were grouped together over the years largely under the control of Fininvest, established in 1978, under his presidency. In the early eighties he entered the television industry by detecting the cable tv Milan 2 and transforming it in the first national commercial television alternative to public service: thus originated Channel 5, together with Publitalia, its advertising agency. The success of Channel 5 was followed by the acquisition of other two channel: 1 Italy (1982) and Channel 4 (1984). The three television stations gave birth to a national network that can compete directly with the RAI. In 1991, with the conquest by the Fininvest of a majority stake in Arnoldo Mondadori, Berlusconi became the first publisher in the field of Italian books and periodicals, as well as being present in supermarkets (with the properties of the group Standa, then sold) and in the world of insurance and financial management (with Mediolanum and Program Italy). Since 1986 he is the owner of the football team A. C. Milan, of which he was also president. Under his management, the club enjoyed great success at national and international level. At the end of 1993, Berlusconi expressed the wish to devote himself to politics with the aim of re-aggregate the deployment of the centre, now devoid of the traditional parties of reference as a result of investigations and prosecutions on the system of bribes and illegal financing. The decision to “take the field” was announced in January 1994 and was followed by the rapid establishment of the movement Forza Italia. He won the parliamentary elections of March in an alliance with the Northern League (Lega Nord) in the north, and in south-central with the National Alliance. The electoral victory, which was confirmed in the European elections of June, consecrated Berlusconi leader of the centre of the grid, rewarding the image of the successful entrepreneur, perceived as foreign to the influences of traditional politics, able to communicate with simple and effective language, great growth prospects for the country. Appointed Chairman of the Board (May 1994), Berlusconi set up a government formed by Forza Italia, National Alliance (Alleanza Nazionale), Northern League (Lega Nord) and the Christian Democratic Centre (Centro Cristiano Democratico). The executive, now marked by internal conflicts of a heterogeneous majority, was stumped by the abnormal position of chairman of the board: a great entrepreneur and owner of the largest private television networks. In December, the ministry was forced to resign, following the defection of the Northern League (Lega Nord), and give way to the Dini government, an expression of the centre-left coalition. In early elections in April 1996 the alliance that was owned by Berlesconi (Polo delle libertà, consisting of Forza Italia, Alleanza Nazionale and other smaller parties of the centre) was defeated, by the deployment of the centre left (L'Ulivo). In the European elections of June 1999, appearing in all the districts with an election campaign very personalised, Berlusconi obtained, with nearly three million votes, a striking success that contributed to the affirmation of Forza Italia as the first party with 25.2% of the vote. This favourable trend was confirmed by the results of the regional elections of April 2000. An even greater customisation was implemented in the general election of 13 May 2001, when Berlusconi managed to dominate the campaign of the new centre-right alliance, the House of Freedom (Casa delle Libertà), which she had entered again, the Northern League (Lega Nord), getting a major success. Appointed Chairman of the Board (June 2001), in the next five years the government set out to liberals and libertarians Berlusconi collided with an international economic crisis, with the need to maintain a balance between the different political positions of the components of the coalition, and the need to clarify the position of being investigated in numerous legal proceedings by the judiciary (organ which has maintained a high level of institutional conflict). After the defeat in the regional elections of April 2005 he was forced to launch in the same month a second action. On the eve of the policies of April 2006, to deal with an obvious loss of support, he engaged in a fierce election campaign in which confirmed the ability to intuit and mobilise the deep feelings of a large part of the country. The defeat by a narrow margin in the House of Freedoms (Casa delle Libertà) coalition in favour of the centre-left, despite a number of reforms undertaken by his government and an electoral program which provided for a reduction in the tax burden and a series of measures for the modernisation of the state, pointed out the difficulty of solving the problem, raising in the political and public opinion, the conflict of interests. To this were added, in an unfavourable. economic climate, the substantial decrease in the purchasing power of wages and economic stagnation. In the general elections of April 2008, the People of Freedom Party (Popolo della Libertà), formed as an aggregation federative two months earlier, has achieved a significant electoral success, resulting in a large parliamentary majority which led Berlusconi to drive, for the fourth time, the government. In March 2009, during the founding congress of the People of Freedom (Popolo della Libertà), was elected by acclamation and unanimously, president of the party. In 2010, the co-founder of the People of Freedom G. Fini left the party creating a new one, and the Future of Freedom for Italy (Futuro e Libertà per l'Italia), joined the opposition. In November 2011 Berlusconi has resigned from the post of President of the Council after the vote in the Chamber of Deputies on the cash flow of the state, approved only thanks to the abstention of the opposition, noted the difficulties of the majority and because of the severe time of financial crisis and economic, domestic and international. In the general elections of 2013, the People of Freedom (Popolo della Libertà) in coalition with the League (Lega Nord) and with other forces of the centre-right has not reached the majority nor for the House nor for the Senate.

THE CASE RUBY

Berlusconi has suffered over the years, some criminal cases, but the one that made the most headlines was the so-called Ruby process that dates back to May 2010. By chance a 17 year old girl Moroccan Karima El Mahroug (known as Ruby) is arrested, but Berlusconi with a phone call pleads for her. Because this interference Berlusconi is under investigation in December 2010 for extortion and for the suspect to cover the most serious offense of child prostitution. After several years of investigation, processes, indictments, accusations, witnesses, false witnesses, etc.., June 24, 2013 Berlusconi was convicted at first instance to 7 years in prison and disqualified from the exercise of public office. Berlusconi's lawyers announced that the defence will go on.


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