They will also be “children of a minor god”, as Giorgia Meloni defined them in Parliament. But with all due respect, they also remain “children of an unknown mother”, as demonstrated by the Tax Registry data. I’m talking about self-employed workers, an integral part of the backbone of the Italian company, evoked, pampered and cajoled with amnesties by this as well as other governments, but despite everything still unknown to the financial administration. Melonomics has chosen them as the privileged electoral constituency of the new fiscal policies, with a corporate logic useful for disarticulating the representation of the productive classes through bonuses and amnesties.
In this the Sister of Italy shows an almost tetragonal coherence. He announced it immediately, on 25 October 2022, in his first speech in Parliament: «We will dedicate our utmost commitment to those thousands of self-employed workers who have never gotten up again after the pandemic: to them, who have often and unfairly been treated like children of a lesser god, we want to recognize adequate protection, because we have always been at the side of those almost 5 million self-employed workers, artisans, traders, freelancers, who constitute a backbone of the Italian economy…”. Much has already been done to honor the promise inherent in what Meloni herself had defined as “the Copernican revolution”. The flat tax on VAT numbers, extended from 65 to 100 thousand euros of turnover, was only the down payment. Then came the “tax truce”, that is, the seventeen amnesties in just a year and a half.
But how does the legendary “VAT number people” repay you for so much trust? Not much, unfortunately. The documentary evidence is provided by the CEO of Sogei, Cristiano Cannarsa, to the Tax Registry Supervisory Commission. Out of an audience of between 4 and 5 million subjects, there are approximately 1 million VAT numbers declaring less than 15 thousand euros of income. Almost 37% of self-employed workers – firms, professionals and small companies – report an income below the survival threshold, i.e. 1,250 euros gross per month. A third, i.e. 330 thousand subjects, even declare negative incomes.
If this were the real economic condition of such a vast stratum of Italian society, the real revolution would probably have already broken out, not the Copernican one dreamed of by the prime minister. It is clear that in the folds of these numbers lies an equally vast phenomenon of evasion, which affects all sectors transversally, as Cannarsa himself explains: under 15 thousand euros «there are law and notary firms, architecture and engineering firms, consultancy and health services, retail and street vendors”. Among those with negative values, however, there are “manufacturing and production activities, such as paper, rubber articles, machines, means of transport, chemical products”.
In short, the god may be “minor”, but among his children fiscal infidelity is the most popular. This was already demonstrated by the annual report on tax evasion and the state of the unobserved economy, which Minister Giorgetti presented to the Chambers in recent months, without attracting too much attention because, precisely, the citizen must not feel too burdened by itself the threat of “state protection money” (another nice Melonian formula, to define the sacrosanct taxes with which healthcare and schools are financed). But now that the new Stability Pact has passed over our heads in Europe, there is no more money, and therefore some signals must be sent in the fight against the black market. The excellent recovery work done by Ernesto Ruffini at the Revenue Agency is not enough. This explains the exit of the Undersecretary for the Economy, who relaunches yet another “agreement” with the autonomous. There’s just a slightly grotesque aspect. Maurizio Leo says that tax evaders must be fought because “they are like terrorists”. So, counter-order comrades! But I wonder: now who tells the “lesser god”?