[Marxism] Letter from Italy: While the old is dying, the new cannot be born
Carl G. Estabrook
galliher at illinois.edu
Tue May 7 21:10:29 MDT 2013
The coverage of Italian politics in the English-language press is condescending - verging on racist - and as a result consistently gets the story wrong.
"...a political circus that started two months ago when the general election resulted in a stalemate," indeed. Couldn't the last US & UK elections be described as patronizingly?
But in fact, the salient point about the February elections is that Italians voted against austerity, insofar as they could. Berlusconi - who's not stupid and not just the lecherous clown depicted in our press - did well because he pointedly and specifically ran against Monti's austerity (by picking out a regressive tax and promising to do away with it). Meanwhile, the party that should have opposed austerity, the PD, didn't do so, and was destroyed. The Grillini specifically attacked austerity and so did very well.
The explicitly anti-austerity elements - Grillo's 5SM & Vendola's SEL - make up the opposition, but Letta's government knows hat it must oppose austerity, and - in spite of what one reads in the FT - is doing so (or at least saying so). They know that if they don't, they'll be overwhelmed by the opposition (perhaps including an even more anti-austerity Berlusconi, who knows where the bodies are buried...).
> Luigi Preiti, a 49-year old unemployed man from the Calabria region of
> southern Italy, walked towards Palazzo Chigi on April 28, the seat of the
> Italian government in Rome, holding a gun. As the military police
> patrolling the palace tried to stop him, Preiti went on a shooting spree.
> He wounded two policemen before the he was restrained and arrested by the
> Carabinieri. Apparently, Preiti’s intended plan was “to kill a politician”
> and then commit suicide.
> Meanwhile, inside the heavily guarded walls of Palazzo Chigi, the new
> Italian government was being sworn in. This was the latest act of a
> political circus that started two months ago when the general election
> resulted in a stalemate.
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