Amoral familism

Published: March 25, 2013 at 11:07am

Those who wish to understand how Maltese society functions have no choice but to read up on amoral familism. I read anthropology at the university (some time ago now) so I have long been able to interpret Maltese behaviour in these terms but also – crucially – I can see that it is not normal and I know that it is associated with the more backward parts of Sicily and Southern Italy (also some other Mediterranean societies but I’m not up to speed on those).

Amoral familism is the reason people in Malta use their vote as currency and do not think in terms of the common good or choosing the right government, but in terms of spiting/rewarding, getting/preventing others from getting.

It is also the reason why even monied and supposedly educated individuals are not embarrassed – rather, they are proud because they think it is a heroic act and that it is perfectly normal and civilised – to talk openly about not voting for this or that party, or not voting at all, on the basis of personal matters and what they wish to obtain personally (or prevent others from obtaining).

This sort of talk, and the reasoning it betrays, is completely unacceptable and questionable in societies more civilised and democratically developed than ours. It is considered to be irrational, inward-looking thinking that is completely at odds with what more developed European societies, built on the notion of the common good, stand for.

I will place some links below to start you off, but you’re best off doing your own research and reading. There’s a lot of information out there and it will help you make sense of your fellow Maltese and even question your own thinking and behaviour.

The Labour Party campaigned in the context of amoral familism, fully understanding it and working with it. The Nationalist Party failed at garnering the support of sufficient numbers of people precisely because it took the more European, civilised approach – the truly progressive and liberal approach.

In public relations terms, the situation was turned on its head and the positions of both parties reversed in the public mind. The Labour Party, campaigning on the basis of really backward amoral familism, became the progressive and liberal one. The Nationalist Party, campaigning on the true European ticket, became the retrograde outfit.

Yesterday I had an argument with Ivan Camilleri, the reporter at The Times, when I found out that both he and his wife didn’t vote because his wife didn’t get the job she wanted (she got a better one instead but that was never going to stand in the way of a nice bout of irrational thinking).

He thinks this is perfectly normal behaviour and boasted about it. “What, do you mean to say that you would have voted for them if that had happened to you?” he asked, in genuine amazement. Yes, I said, because apart from the fact that I don’t feel entitled to anything, I draw a clear distinction between my personal issues and choosing the government. If I am going to get a government anyway, which is the case, then I want to choose it.

Then the hdura came out about how he didn’t want the Nationalist Party returned to government because of this person and that person.

“Oh, so you prefer the Labour Party then?” I asked. “No, I don’t and I didn’t vote for them.” I pointed out his lack of logic. If he didn’t want the Nationalist Party returned to government, the only alternative was Labour, so it follows that he prefers Labour, whether he voted for them or not.

I also pointed out that it is shocking to hear somebody brag about the fact that their personal non-issues are more important than the national interest, or that they are so narrow-minded that they cannot see the scale of their actions compared to the context of their personal issues. I said that I take exception to being told by somebody that their wife’s failure to obtain the exact job she wants is more important than the safety of the nation’s economy and the jobs of several thousand other people.

I also said that it is particularly ironic that – because Nicolette Camilleri didn’t get the exact job she wanted in Brussels but got another one instead – she and Ivan Camilleri went out of their way to punish the very people who made it possible for them to be in Brussels in the first place, with a nice EU passport, and rewarded instead the very same team of people who bust their guts trying to keep us out of the European Union.

There you have it: the perfect illustration of amoral familism. After reading about the subject, you will begin to see things more clearly and you will, hopefully, stop seeing this kind of behaviour as normal or as anything other than extremely backward.

62 Comments Comment

    • Libertas says:

      We Maltese have even coined a slogan/explanation for amoral familism:
      ‘għall-familja nagħmel kollox’.

      • Vanessa says:

        ‘L-omm lesta li tit*ahhab ghal-uliedha’ is an expression I hear often. I wonder what sort of mother would do that. Really.

        I do work my butt off to support my sprog, and If I were to lose my job I would take anything that came to hand until a better one were available, but… streetwalking?! Get real.

        And… I get to spend my whole working day in the company of such idiots. God, please help me.

  1. H.P. Baxxter says:

    Et tu Ivan Camilleri! Now we begin to understand The Times’ editorial policy.

    • P Shaw says:

      He was so much in sync, that he posted similar comments on Musumeci’s FB wall during the election campaign.

      Remember that Ivan and Joseph Muscat became friends in Brussels and were often seen together. I will not be surprised if Ivan negotiated a deal for himself or his wife during the campaign.

      The position of Brussels correspondent for The Times was not a necessity in the first place, given that all EU announcements are posted on the internet.

      I also wonder if his brother came to Malta to vote from Germany.

      • H.P. Baxxter says:

        His brother! Another piece of work. The least said, the better, because I can’t afford a defence lawyer when the lawsuits get slapped on me.

    • Macchiavelli says:

      One word, Ivan: “meritokrazija”

  2. Maria Xriha says:

    Thank you for pointing this out.

    I was trying to get out of my post-election numbness and trying desperately to get to grips with why people are so spitefully stupid that it blinds them from realising that they have been so fully exploited.

    There is almost a joy at competing over the stupidest “most positive” reason to have switched.

    Almost as if the most respect was vested in the person with least morals…. a la Mintoff.

    This explains a lot.

  3. La Redoute says:

    Now I’m curious. What is this job that Nicolette Camilleri wanted and what’s the job she actually got? I’d just like to compare the value difference there with the bigger one she and her husband helped to bring about.

    [Daphne – She wanted her contract renewed after six years at Malta’s Permanent Representation in Brussels and had a job found for her at the European Commission instead.]

    • La Redoute says:

      So let me see if I’ve understood this correctly.

      Nicolette Camilleri got a leg up in a notoriously competitive system which routinely excludes highly qualified, competent people simply on the grounds that there are too many of them, so she and her husband voted in a Labour government by default, the consequences of which choice will not affect her directly as she is now no longer employed by the Maltese government and her job is now virtually guaranteed.

      And her husband’s still complaining.

      • Last Post says:

        Is-switchers, jew ‘ex-nazzjonalisti’ huma nies li thanzru taht in-Nazzjonalisti, imma ma thanzrux bizzejjed, allura jridu iktar.

      • A.Attard says:

        U ghalhekk hawn numru kbir ta’ Nazzjonalisti li ivvutaw PN imma inkazzati bl-ikrah ghal min kien qed imexxi u agevola li dawn in-nies li malli ma hadux li riedu tradewh

    • Zammit says:

      The fact that someone else has to find you a job is already demeaning.

      In a normal country, you find the job that you want based on your experience, CV and job specifications.

      It’s only in Malta that “someone else finds you” a job, and that people demand it and seek revenge when they don’t get it.

      Talk about meritocracy – my ass!

    • Cesca says:

      Nicolette Camilleri was conspicuously posting inanities amongst other things on Facebook during and after the election, with barely an iota – if anything at all – related to the political situation in Malta.

      She had really stuck out like a sore thumb by doing so. Reading the above, I now realise why.

  4. Calculator says:

    I’ve been feeling this amoral inward-looking trend was unfortunately rampant for some time, which was exposed in the run-up to the elecion and afterwards. Thank you for finally allowing me to give a name to it.

    [Daphne – It is not a trend, but the ancient roots of Maltese society. Not even money or EU membership have been able to eradicate it. This is where you have the split between the ‘two Maltas’.]

    I’ve experienced amoral familism – or an off-shoot of it – first-hand. An uncle and aunt of mine decided to vote Labour (and thwarted the attempt of my invalid grandmother to vote PN as she always did) purely on the basis of ‘giving Muscat a go’.

    When I reasoned it out, I figured they could say this only because, unlike the rest of us, their immediate family had nothing at stake.

    They both have stable and established work positions, while their son and daughter are living and working abroad. So I guess once they’re comfortable, the rest of us can go hang ourselves for all they care.

  5. Catsrbest says:

    Amoral and immoral in my books. So selfish and self-centred. I have started to adopt what Eddie Fenech Adami suggested in the 80s in a very different context – boycotting all those who are self-centred and inconsiderate.

  6. Bella Patria says:

    Stories like this make me want to puke.

    How sad to think that some people consider the vote a weapon rather than a privilege.

    • Fido says:

      I wouldn’t even use the word privilege; it is more of responsibility. Therefore to act otherwise is nothing else but irresponsible.

  7. P Shaw says:

    When Ivan was handpicked by The Times to go to Brussels (given that his wife was already there), a number of The Times reporters, in particular Herman Grech, were extremely upset.

    [Daphne – I am not at all surprised and I certainly don’t blame them. I would have been upset, too, in their position.]

  8. Andrew W says:

    I completely agree. I did a test during the election campaign. Whenever I had someone scream “viva Labour” in my face, I asked them “What 5 key policy proposals do you think the labour government will action which are most relevant to you?”

    I was met with a blank look every time.

    The voting system the majority have adopted is not about which party works for you, but about the colour.

    This was proven, when last year, it was stated that the Labour Party would freeze national minimum wage if they came into power. Now the Labour Party get their followers largely from working class people.

    So even though the people were told that they would be getting hit in the wallet, they still ran round screaming “Viva Labour!” Strange behaviour indeed.

    Of course, I come from a country where we are brought up and conditioned to think for ourselves, rather than getting brainwashed from birth.

    • Fido says:

      The alternative interpretations would be that either they are so stupid that they can never hope to understand the implications of their actions, or they are so egocentric that they are ready to cut off their nose to spite their face.

      • king rat says:

        Where I come from we say castrate oneself to spite the wife, yet it now looks like decapitation to spite everybody else.

  9. Catherine says:

    This is interesting.

    My background is in psychology, and I tend to analyse everything in terms of what mental disorders /personality disorders people fit into.

    As you can imagine, I’ve been pretty busy with the Maltese political scene. It’s turning into an unhealthy obsession (so much so that I believe I am starting to fit into the OCD category, but I digress).

    The point is that no matter what framework you use to interpret Maltese society, alarm bells ring off. It’s very disconcerting, and I will probably soon fit into the depression category.

  10. Tomas says:

    Totally shameful. This after Nicolette Camilleri worked at the Perm Rep in Brussels being paid more than anybody else and Ivan was accomodated with a job as The Times ‘correspondent’ in Brussels.

    After six years they wanted their contract extended because they didn’t want to come back to Malta but this was not possible, so an arrangement was made for the wife to work at the European Commission, while Ivan had no choice but to return to Malta because The Times pulled the plug on the Brussels posting and returned him to base.

    I simply do not believe the brass neck of these people. This was the reason, then, why during this election Ivan ma ‘harigx ghonqu’ bhal ma ghamel fl-2008.

  11. Peter F says:

    A hearty round of applause to Nicolette and Ivan. Hats off to them!

    They lived it up under a PN government (translated into Maltese as: pappewha) and showed their gratitude.

    I feel elated when I hear these stories. The phrase about bright bulbs and Christmas trees is on the tip of my tongue but I shall refrain.

  12. H. Prynne says:

    “Oh, so you prefer the Labour Party then?” I asked. “No, I don’t and I didn’t vote for them.” I pointed out his lack of logic. If he didn’t want the Nationalist Party returned to government, the only alternative was Labour, so it follows that he prefers Labour, whether he voted for them or not.

    Exactly my argument to family members who did not vote.

    Unfortunately, they just don’t get it.

  13. TL says:

    “I pointed out his lack of logic. If he didn’t want the Nationalist Party returned to government, the only alternative was Labour, so it follows that he prefers Labour, whether he voted for them or not.”

    Not-PN does not equal Labour. Don’t be ridiculous. If that were true, not-Labour would logically equal PN, and Ivan Camilleri would be a PN voter.

    Part of the PN’s defeat was precisely this utter inability to understand that succesfully convincing people not to vote Labour would not ipso facto mean that they would vote PN.

    People vote for various reasons. The common good is all well and good only if we can all agree on the nature of the common good (or, more precisely, the means to achieve it). By definition, in a pluralistic democracy, that’s never going to happen, and so the people calling for the common good are usually calling for everyone to agree with their specific understanding of things. To go a step further and call it immoral to disagree is quite special. I most certainly voted for the common good. It just turns out we disagree on what that is.

    [Daphne – You are completely wrong. Voting in a two-party system (or rather, one in which only either of two parties has the chance of forming the government) is ALWAYS a matter of choosing the government. You cannot compare it to multi-party situations. You are either going to get government X or government Y. You decide which one you want, and then you act accordingly to get it. And yes, in this specific case, not voting was an act in favour of the Labour Party, simply because Nicolette and Ivan Camilleri withdrew their support from the PN, decreasing its votes deliberately so that it would lose. If the PN loses, Labour wins. No amount of attempts at conscience-salving or justification will change that. The only reason they didn’t actively vote for Labour is so that they could come right back in and try to curry favour with the PN immediately the current incumbents lost. They have begun that process already, but the Nationalist Party would be 1. insane to trust them, 2. immoral to do so, 3. crazy to let vipers back into the nest, demonstrating that it has learned absolutely nothing from dealing with all those stop-at-nothing egomaniacs over the last five years.]

    • H.P. Baxxter says:

      The PN has already welcomed Ivan Camilleri back into its fold. In fact he was never really out of it. During the run-up to the election, he had a direct line to the very top of the party and the government, practically all the way to the PM.

      Nice going, PN.

      • TinaB says:

        Then one wonders why the country ended up in this one whole big mess.

        The PN naively thought that in time the majority of the population’s mentality will change for the better by their manner of governing

        They couldn’t have been more wrong.

      • Cesca says:

        The PN are way too naive and trusting.

  14. imhasseb says:

    A very good article. So now I understand why Ivan Camilleri´s articles in The Times were often critical of the Government. Naturally his hidden agenda was in collusion with The Times.

  15. M Falzon says:

    Those who arranged for Mrs Camilleri to stay in Brussels are part of this system too.

    When my partner had no option but to leave his job in December, everyone was telling us to get someone in the government to find him a job but we refused and looked for a job through proper channels.

    Today my partner is working, thanks to his studies and abilities and thanks to our previous government who had always created jobs and so it was easy to find a new job.

  16. Raymond says:

    From what I have heard, there are friends of his who followed him in his footsteps; some working at the Times of Malta, others working elsewhere in Malta and others working in Brussels.

  17. babi says:

    Nies bhal dawn, wara li kielu u iffangaw, issa ghax ‘ma hadux li riedu’ kellhom l-ardir bi protesta ma jivvotawx. J’Alla fuq pajjizna jinzel is-swat u l-ghakx kollu tad-dinja sabiex min tkessah jerga jigi f’sensieh. Ma jimpurtax li anke jien inbati mieghu. It-tbatija tieghi tittaffa meta nara li min tkessah ibati.

  18. Liberta says:

    I never studied at a university and have no degrees, but certain things seem very easy to understand.

    I often wonder how people can be so obtuse, hardheaded and unreasonable.

    I tried to explain to quite a few people who said they would not vote as they felt the PN did not accede to their wishes.

    When I retorted that the PL won’t be the better government and that they (and the whole of Malta) too would suffer the consequences, their answer was “imma almenu nkun nissawwat mill-Lejber mhux mill-partit tieghi”.

    Charity as in loving others and working for the common good never meant anything to the many devout Catholics who didn’t vote or voted Labour out of spite. To them “me. me. me” is the person charity is aimed at.

    Selfish and amoral to the bitter end.

    • maryanne says:

      University degrees are immaterial. What matters is upbringing, values and a healthy outlook on life.

      • H.P. Baxxter says:

        Hear hear.

        Universities degrees mean jack shit, Liberta. You write splendidly.

        Meanwhile, our magna cum laude geniuses, one of whom will be overseeing the birth of the Second Republic, cannot string two sentences together.

      • king rat says:

        Yep , but we still have to work and enjoy life with a shitload of jackals and hyenas .

  19. Futur mill-aghar says:

    Stories like this one make me feel the full horror of living in such a society. It’s like the nightmare you know you cannot wake up from.

    I really have no vocabulary to express my feelings that is not obscene or bordering on it, even though uttering obscenities is normally so repulsive to me.

  20. Fido says:

    It would be most enlighting if Ivan Camilleri were to provide us with his reaction/s to these blogs. In the absence of such relevation, one can safely assume that all that is being said about him is a true reflection of his logical abilities, integrity and objectivity.

    It reminds me of the simplistic definition of egocentrism: “l-ewwl jien, imbaghad jien, u sakemm jibqa’ jifdal nerga’ jien ukoll.”

  21. TinaB says:

    Instead of being grateful for being given the opportunity to have good jobs which without a doubt filled their pockets with many thousands of euros during the last ten years, thanks to a Nationalist government, they have the cheek to boast that they did not vote PN simply because Mrs Camilleri’s contract was not renewed?

    Shame on you both.

    Wara li sirtu nies, grazzi ghal gvern Nazzjonalista – il-vera wicckom u sormkom xorta.

  22. Teo says:

    It becomes a bit clearer with every day that passes, how come the PN suffered a loss of the proportions it did.

    Knowing Ivan from years back, I just cannot believe he would go as far as not voting. So much for believing in what your party stands for.

    When all the reports are drawn up and the various commissions have anlysed the electoral results, no prizes for guessing the first and most important factor in the PN’s downfall: good old Egoism, and the capital E is no mistake.

    When your moviment starts screwing up the country, be proud.

  23. Candida says:

    It was clear the election result I mean, it was a spiteful protest for things that they asked for and did not get, what a pitiful nation of selfish, greedy opeople

    They were actually rich and having it good but like the dog and the bone thye wanted their bone and even more

    We’ll see what they’ll get now time will tell

  24. Jozef says:

    This has to be the prototype. The PN needs this individual to engineer the formality.

    Labour understands the language but doesn’t have the will or talent to build.

    When people like Ivan will become the obstacle to growth, the PN has to be ready.

    Then we’ll compare Liberal.

  25. Daphne Caruana Galizia says:

    Banfield’s 1958 book was required reading in Paul Sant Cassia’s class at the University of Malta.

    A more recent, and very popular, literature has developed around the persistence of cultural and social norms.

    It’s mostly done by economists and economic historians, and is empirical, so really adds weight to the idea that cultural norms have ancient roots and persist despite historical junctures.

    Here are some examples, in ‘magazine’ form:

    The geography of hate: How anti-Semitism in interwar Germany was influenced by the medieval mass murder of Jews – Is violence a cultural trait passed from one generation to the next?

    This column examines an extreme case – anti-Semitism in Germany. It shows that towns that murdered their Jews during the Black Death (1348-1350) were also much more likely to commit violence or engage in anti-Semitic acts in interwar Germany, nearly 600 years later. This suggests racial hatred can persist over centuries.

    The Empire is dead; long live the Empire!

    In the context of our research, the ‘Habsburg Effect’ refers to our empirical finding that, in the year 2006, people in Eastern Europe who live in locations that belonged to the Habsburg Empire before it disappeared in 1918, give very different answers in a survey on trust and corruption than respondents just across the long-gone Habsburg border, in formerly Ottoman and Russian areas.

  26. Michelle Pirotta says:

    U mhux Nicolette biss gawdiet. it-Times taw paga biex Ivan jibqa’ Brussels sitt snin maghha, meta l-istejjer li kien jirrapporta minn Brussell – kif qed jaghmel issa – setghu isiru minn kwalunkwe ufficcju f’Malta.

    • ciccio says:

      Kwalunkwe ufficcju? Anke minn pjazza pubblika fejn hemm il-WiFi li dahhal il-PN, trid tghid. Kienu jiffrankaw anke il-kera u spejjez tal-ufficju dawk tat-Times.

  27. Janneke Pis says:

    Persons familiar with Dar Malta will tell you that Nicolette Camilleri had a very long and glum face on having to leave the place.

    She apparently considered her job as some sort of God-given right and reportedly insisted the government must extend her stay because she had bought a property in Brussels and so needed the money to pay off the mortgage.

    She practically blubbed her way through her farewell drinks at Dar Malta and virtually made a scene when her boss, then Richard Cachia Caruana, invited her to say a few words of parting to staff.

    Since repatriating to Malta, her Facebook page has seen a good number of snide remarks against her home country, not exactly the behaviour expected from a former diplomat representing Malta abroad.

    But whaddya know….the interviewing panel that gave her the job in the first place should have known better. They should have just shown her the door outright or maybe they were pushed by a hidden PN hand to select her…. and years down the line the PN eventually got its just desserts with sending such a loser to Brussels after all.

  28. Gahan says:

    From The Times :

    Take a peep into Frankie Tabone’s mind,000.462649#comment_1751948

    mark borg
    Yesterday, 15:04
    Dr.Debono, jien kieku President ta Malta nghamlek (u perpetwu ). Prosit and keep it up ! kemm nihu pjacir nara min qed jitqatta bl ghira ! hudu pacenzja u la forsi issa titilghu xi 10 snin ohra ta l-anqas, nehhuh min hemm..ha h ha ha h ha ha ha, jalla tghamel mitt sena hemm dr.debono !

    Reply to mark borg
    mark borg

    Yesterday, 14:54
    Dr Debono haqqu 24 miljun u mhux 24 elf !! talli jhekk xejn kixef il mafja ta Gonzipn & friends.

    mark borg
    Yesterday, 14:57
    Twanny ..kemm niehu pjacir narak tinkwieta u titbaqbab fuq kull bicca ahbar…thanks u kompli paxxini

  29. puxa says:

    A very good article, thank you.

    Finally I am starting to understand, some logic ( or no logic), of the Maltese soceity. Most probably in his book “The Moral Basis of a Backward Society”, Banfield was referring also to Malta and not only to the Southern Italian region.

    [Daphne – No, it’s an academic study of particular places. Malta doesn’t figure, though yes, the culture is practically identical.]

  30. Josh says:

    What is also relevant is anthropologists’ discussions on Maltese clientelistic relations in politics. John Mitchell and Jeremy Boussevain have written brilliant books about Maltese society and politics.

    What is interesting is how Maltese people have not managed to adapt to neo-liberal politics, especially since we entered the European Union. People EXPECT things from their government and simply use their vote as a means of exchange for something personal – as currency.

    Also, the way neo-liberal states work is that the State takes a step back from people’s personal lives and offers funds and opportunities for all; promoting REAL equality. Through privatization opportunities are created.

    It then depends on the individual’s motivation to take up these opportunities and make something of himself or herself. Yet this distancing by the government is felt as abandonment as people perceive their needs as “particular”, “special” and “exceptional”.

    The fact that the Maltese state was the major employer in Malta for a long time, before privatization really started to kick, is also relevant. But amoral familism also played a huge role.

    Sadly, culture changes much slower than state politics and clientelism is still the means by which people understand their relation to the state.

    Anyway, very interesting article Daphne.

    • Calculator says:

      Well said. Unfortunately, what I get from what I hear people say is that their idea of the State is providing just (or their version of ‘just’) results rather than just opportunities.

      The fact that the Maltese State actually had this role for some time (especially under Labour) by directly providing employment for its supporters has only made this expectation more difficult to remove.

      I think education needs to be taken seriously as having a role in this regard. Part of the PN’s downfall was, in my opinion, that they were too naive and expected their results to speak for themselves. Unfortunately, while the results do so, most people wanted their own lazy and egoistic results and couldn’t care less for others.

      Maybe if political philosophy were taught more widely more people would be able to open their minds up to what real government should be like. I only studied it for one year at University, and it made me appreciate what real politics and government are all about.

  31. Philip Micallef says:

    Extremely interesting. Besides the anthropological aspects I think that the more affluent people get the more they become egoistic and put their materialistic requirements over and above the common good. They are not able to distinguish between personal differences and professional ones. Even in their daily job they abuse their post to attack and report incorrect facts or half-truths.

  32. Sandro Borg says:

    How dare you publicly reveal what Ivan voted and the reason for doing do. You are so immoral and pathetic.

    You also spoke in complete disgust towards those who brag about who they will vote, yet that is always what you have been doing.
    it takes one to know one

    [Daphne 1. It is Ivan himself who revealed that he planned not to vote (as distinct from how he planned to vote). He tore up his voting document in the presence of others and told many people because that was his very aim: to make it clear that neither he nor his wife were going to vote. 2. I heard all this from several people and had the decency to ring him for confirmation rather than just going on what was said. He confirmed it to me. 3. If Ivan and Nicolette did not wish to be embarrassed by public knowledge of their actions, they should have kept quiet instead of making a point of telling people. That is why the vote is secret – so that you don’t have to tell people if you don’t want to. 4. The reason that Ivan and Nicolette now feel compromised is because they have spent the last couple of weeks telling people that they are “now back on board with the PN” and are once more actively sucking up to certain people. They are, of course, absolutely not to be trusted. The Nationalist Party should have learnt its lesson over the last couple of years about people who have a perverse attitude towards loyalty and decency. ‘Back on board’ – when only the day before yesterday Ivan Camilleri told me that he wanted to see the PN defeated? His aim now is to have Mario de Marco, who he can’t stand, out of the race. Hence the sucking up to one of his rivals, who shouldn’t touch him even with a spiked barge-pole. 5. I am very happy for everyone to know how I vote because, unlike Ivan and Nicolette Camilleri, I have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of in this regard. They, on the other hand, do. Not ashamed for not voting, particularly, but certainly of their motivation in doing so. I’m guessing that wider exposure has given them a different perspective on how correct and justified that motivation was, but more crucially, it hasn’t helped their personal ambition. Forget the political angle: what you have here are two people who are both/have both been consummately disloyal to their employers who went out of their way to help them, actively betraying those employers and briefing against them. It is quite obvious that somebody like that cannot be trusted by anyone else, ever. I do NOT express disgust at those who say how they will vote.]

    • Gahan says:

      Sandro Borg …and Daphne, the names of people who don’t vote is public domain.

      After the ballot boxes are sealed , the political party reps can take note of the people who did not vote. That’s perfectly legal.

      If I’m not mistaken the names are published on the Malta Government Gazette some time after the election.

  33. Joseph Cauchi Senior says:

    Yesterday I happened to be at Café Cordina at 02.30 pm and there was Ivan Camilleri with Alan Camilleri (formerly of Malta Enterprise) and Simon Busuttil in deep conversation.

    It would be interesting to know what the conversation was about.

  34. Dott Abjad says:

    The subject of Amoral Familism needs to be brought to the fore again, especially in the context of being an important analytical tool in helping one to understand the current political and social scenario.

    Firstly, from an academic point of view, if any truly objective and wise socio-anthropological scholar wanted a challenge in assessing the local scene, this perspective will help make any thesis a milestone piece of anthropoligal/sociological research.

    Secondly, and from a pragmatic point of view, the knowledge that would be derived from a study of Maltese Society from an ‘amoral familism’ perspective would serve any organisation, institution or political party very well for the present and future.

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