Thursday, 31 May 2007

The Left is Stuck in the Middle

(Photo: Electioncollage by Centrifuga). The center-right coalition, Casa delle Libertà, won local elections which took place between Sunday 27th and Monday 28th (repubblica.it). According to Renato Mannheimer’s analysis (corriere.it), the brand-new Partito Democratico particularly suffered the fall of voting flow.
The Casa delle Libertà conquered many northern towns previously governed by
L'Unione, the center-left coalition. Here are some of them: Verona, Asti, Alessandria, Monza, Vercelli and Gorizia. Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia and Umberto Bossi’s Lega Nord had the best performances within the coalition. This good results add up to the victory in Sicily local elections two weeks ago (repubblica.it).
Although L'Unione kept power in Genova, it lost a great deal of votes in Northern Italy. It won in L’Aquila and in Taranto supporting radical left candidates, and in Agrigento supporting an ex-center-right candidate.
The Partito Democratico, which has been recently established by the merger of the two bigger parties of L'Unione,
Democratici di Sinistra and Margherita, doesn’t represent workers properly and it still doesn’t convince the middle class. It simply doesn’t express any political vision at all, since its members have different views upon almost every subject.
You can’t win if you’re stuck in the middle.

Saturday, 26 May 2007

Confindustria and Liberalism

(ro buk, Factory worker)


On Thursday, May 24th 2007, the President of Confindustria Luca Cordero di Montezemolo declared that the economic recovery in Italy is due only to businesses and the markets. Secondly, he added that if businesses are left alone by the Government, the recovery will soon die out (repubblica.it).


Quite overwhelmingly, Mr Montezemolo seems to ignore that the Government has just cut down labour costs by € 5 bn per year (repubblica.it) and it has started with liberal reforms in several sectors, such as tlc, banks, insurances, etc. (corriere.it).


The fact is that in Italy low wages are supporting economic growth (corriere.it) while as even Mr Montezemolo admitted tax evasion is still at 27% of the gross domestic product (repubblica.it).

Businesses ask for more competition as well as for government protection. Is this really liberalism?

"In Italy, where the economic and political conditions are particularly immature, the classes and men interested in a liberal politcs should be satisfied of being a minority and making the country ready for a better future with an organized and combative opposition. We must come to believe that those nationalists and siderurgicals who are interested on the parasitism of the owners were not and are not liberals; nor those reformers who fight for the parasitism of the servants; nor those landowners who wish customs duties over wheat to speculate on a robbing large-scale farming; nor those socialists who are ready to sacrifice freedom to set themselves against the dominant classes for a benefit given to their co-operative societies. Since liberalism is neither indifference nor abstention, we expect that for the future liberals, after having picked out their eternal enemies, get ready to fight them implacably" (6).



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(6) “In Italia, dove le condizioni sia economiche che politiche sono singolarmente immature, le classi e gli uomini interessati a una politica liberale devono accontentarsi di essere una minoranza e di preparare al paese un avvenire migliore con un’opposizione organizzata e combattiva. Bisogna convincersi che non erano e non potevano essere, come non sono, liberali i nazionalisti e i siderurgici, interessati al parassitismo dei padroni, né i riformisti che combattevano per il parassistismo dei servi, né gli agricoltori latifondisti che vogliono il dazio sul grano per speculare su una cultura estensiva di rapina, né i socialisti pronti a sacrificare la libertà di opporsi alle classi dominanti per un sussidio dato alle loro cooperative. Poiché il liberalismo non è indifferenza né astensione ci aspettiamo che per il futuro i liberali, individuati i loro nemici eterni, si apprestino a combatterli implacabilmente.” (Piero Gobetti, La rivoluzione liberale, 1920).

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