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    Berlusconi: Italy's Midas loses his touch

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    Abandoned by top aides and choked by legal woes, Silvio Berlusconi's defeat in a showdown with Prime Minister Enrico Letta on Wednesday was seen by analysts as a sign of his terminal decline. After two decades in politics, the bombastic tycoon who once compared himself to Jesus Christ cut an increasingly lonely figure as one by one his lieutenants broke ranks to support the government.