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Italian Employment Law Caused Carnival Cruise Ship Debacle

Tuesday, January 17th, 2012
Posted in Education by Joel Gross

Almost everyone agrees that the Italian captain of the Carnival cruise ship was utterly incompetent and caused the deaths of several people when he ran his ship aground.  He is now being charged with manslaughter, abandoning ship and other crimes.  Read more about him abandoning ship here.

The question is: Why was this idiot the captain of a major ship in the first place?

I don’t know the captain’s personal details, but I do know that Italian  law makes it nearly impossible to fire any employee, regardless of how incompetent they are.  Such a legal structure not only causes obvious disaster such as the cruise ship, but it causes hidden economic disaster since you can’t fire someone when they are underperforming.

One thought on “Italian Employment Law Caused Carnival Cruise Ship Debacle

  1. Hi Joel, It’s not just Italy’s employment laws which make Italy complicated, it is also the ‘recommendation’ system which can lead to incompetent people being appointed to positions of responsibility too. While skill does count in Italy, being a member of such and such family, or a friend of a friend, can count much more, alas. I am wondering whether the Concordia Captain case is an example of this. The consequences of this dubious system can be disastrous, literally. All the best from Milan, Italy, Alex

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