Italy going the same way as Hungary?

pmv

Lifer
May 30, 2008
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Italy seems to keep producing ever-more right-wing parties. It's hard to keep up.

Is any country going to firmly buck this global trend towards the populist, fascist-adjacent, far right?

Everywhere the "left" seems directionless and nearly inert. (Here, Keir Starmer barely seems to exist - even Gordon Brown has more to say than he does)


Barring an unlikely political miracle, Giorgia Meloni will become prime minister. This will be a historic moment for Italy and for Europe: Meloni is head of the far-right and populist Brothers of Italy party – the direct political heir of the neo-fascist Italian Social Movement (with which it shares part of its symbol, a flag-flame).
Meloni and Salvini are populists in the Viktor Orbán, Nigel Farage and Marine Le Pen mould. They have built their success on promises of huge and regressive tax cuts, nationalist anti-immigrant and anti-refugee rhetoric (with elements of Great Replacement theories) and anti-EU and anti-euro narratives. Much of this has been played out on social media, where Meloni and Salvini are expert players, unlike Berlusconi, who has never moved beyond television as his favourite medium.
A new coalition within Europe will take shape, encompassing Italy, Hungary and Poland, and with strong links to the ideas and slogans of Trump’s United States. Meloni and Salvini have no answers to Italy’s never-ending economic crisis, apart from scapegoating Europe, migrants, “bankers” and “Soros”. Their strange “flat tax” proposals will almost certainly make matters worse. Even darker days await for Italy, after the ravages and divisions of the pandemic, whose effects are still being felt.

Meloni’s decision to stay out of the wide emergency coalition under Draghi looks set to reap a political harvest this autumn. She has carefully cultivated her image as a mother and a patriot. Since Berlusconi first brought the far right back into the fold in the 1990s, many former post-neo-fascists have served as ministers. But the top job has never been held by someone from that tradition – until now.
 

Jaskalas

Lifer
Jun 23, 2004
31,480
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Is any country going to firmly buck this global trend towards the populist, fascist-adjacent, far right?
We will not escape human nature, nor have we developed the tools necessary in order to adequately douse the flames of tribal zealotry that drives us.
Enlightenment was a warm blanket that kept us safe during easy times. Hard times are ahead, and WE threaten to unmake all that we hold dear. The world over.
We have overestimated ourselves and thought ourselves different than the Romans, and the countless other peoples of the past. Instead, we are exactly like them.
Our institutions alone separate us from them, and institutions only exist so long as men believe in them. Trust in and place their faith into them. Our faith is fickle.
And so is the warm blanket that protected us from the monsters in the night. We must save ourselves, but we hardly know who or what the enemy is.
We do not know how to describe and classify the problem, nor how to inoculate school kids from it. We do not teach people what we are, nor how to avoid our base instincts.

I fear that we have already failed. Before the first shot fired, has the outcome not already been determined, as it has for centuries? For millennia?
What chance do we stand against tribalism?
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
69,497
5,060
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We will not escape human nature, nor have we developed the tools necessary in order to adequately douse the flames of tribal zealotry that drives us.
Enlightenment was a warm blanket that kept us safe during easy times. Hard times are ahead, and WE threaten to unmake all that we hold dear. The world over.
We have overestimated ourselves and thought ourselves different than the Romans, and the countless other peoples of the past. Instead, we are exactly like them.
Our institutions alone separate us from them, and institutions only exist so long as men believe in them. Trust in and place their faith into them. Our faith is fickle.
And so is the warm blanket that protected us from the monsters in the night. We must save ourselves, but we hardly know who or what the enemy is.
We do not know how to describe and classify the problem, nor how to inoculate school kids from it. We do not teach people what we are, nor how to avoid our base instincts.

I fear that we have already failed. Before the first shot fired, has the outcome not already been determined, as it has for centuries? For millennia?
What chance do we stand against tribalism?
Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy: Human nature to the rescue. Human survival against tribalism was offset by the evolution of the liberal brain. Tribalism leads to inbreeding, lack of genetic diversity and the expression of dangerous genetically recessive genes. This lead to the development of first class business seats, international law, reciprocally beneficial trade agreements, the vast increase in worldwide individual wealth and all sorts of wonderfully beneficial liberal things all because we had to learn how to negotiate the exchange genetic material. And the precursers of -all of this was there long before humanity arrived on the scene. What monkey doesn't understand that i'll scratch your back if you scratch mine wordlessly.

We create what we fear the fear of failure helps it happen. So if fascism wins today down the road it is either doomed to fade or else we will have genetically become the equivalent of ants. Fascism isn't a problem for them.
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
69,497
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Eh, it's an Italian political party/administration. Give it 3-13 months, and you'll get a different one.
All the only religious and partisan beliefs on the news noisy planet are having a simultaneous crisis of faith. It's what happens when you live in interesting times.
 

nickqt

Diamond Member
Jan 15, 2015
7,302
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Society is collapsing - even people who don't know or deny it can sense it, and fascists promise a "return to greatness" that typically involves foreign wars and internal purges.

Welcome to the 2020s. Every year will be even more 2020'ish than the last.
 

soundforbjt

Lifer
Feb 15, 2002
17,097
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Society is collapsing - even people who don't know or deny it can sense it, and fascists promise a "return to greatness" that typically involves foreign wars and internal purges.

Welcome to the 2020s. Every year will be even more 2020'ish than the last.
The new ‘Roaring Twenties’ , fascist style.
 
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Commodus

Diamond Member
Oct 9, 2004
8,953
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Italy seems to keep producing ever-more right-wing parties. It's hard to keep up.

Is any country going to firmly buck this global trend towards the populist, fascist-adjacent, far right?

Everywhere the "left" seems directionless and nearly inert. (Here, Keir Starmer barely seems to exist - even Gordon Brown has more to say than he does)
To borrow from Yeats: "the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity."

While the left does have some serious problems, part of the issue is simply that intelligent people present complex, nuanced arguments that don't lend themselves well to fiery speeches or 10-second soundbites. And while there are intelligent conservatives, it's the left that generally prizes intelligence and subtlety much more.

As I'm sure you know, the populist right thrives on simplistic political stances: foreigners are bad! Privatization is always better! You're either with us, or with the terrorists! They're horribly flawed arguments, but they're easy to convey when you're shouting loudly at a political rally... and let's be honest, not-so-bright people latch on to them much more readily.

The challenge isn't so much altering the left's policy, although there is room for improvement, so much as it is communicating that policy effectively. Obama won two terms in part because he combined a sophisticated (not perfect, but sophisticated) agenda with simple messaging: "hope," "yes we can" and the like. You didn't need to understand the intricacies of his healthcare or environmental policies to know that he was an antidote to the toxic neoconservatism of the Bush Jr. era.

I'd like to see Labour, the Democrats or others on the left follow a similar approach. Don't get mired in the specifics when talking to the public — just create a clear message and drive it home. Be prepared to elaborate, of course, but don't let the populists wreck the country just because they have catchier marketing.
 

Jaskalas

Lifer
Jun 23, 2004
31,480
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Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy: Human nature to the rescue.
We don't survive the scenario that our tribal, zealous, delusional nature drives us towards.
Or rather... some people do, but most will die along with our Democracy.
Our, temporary, stable society allowed for the growth of industries and populations that far exceed that we can maintain without such logistics. Famine will not just be a word for Africa. You will not think your way out of hunger and a lack of clean potable water.
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
69,497
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We don't survive the scenario that our tribal, zealous, delusional nature drives us towards.
Or rather... some people do, but most will die along with our Democracy.
Our, temporary, stable society allowed for the growth of industries and populations that far exceed that we can maintain without such logistics. Famine will not just be a word for Africa. You will not think your way out of hunger and a lack of clean potable water.
Look. I am not trying to argue the facts you present nor the seriousness of the problem as stated. I am interested in a focus on attitude, how we react to the facts we tell ourselves are factual. It is our attitude toward reality that we find our inner reality and how it creates how we perceive the world.

I am saying there is a psychological truth that we create what we fear that is key to self understanding and that it is in self understanding alone that the solution to our problems will be found.

What you describe above are facts that derive from the simpler fact that humanity is asleep, living in an altered reality. We are programmed and in such a way that to see it is to feel the fear of death. That is where the problem lies, as I said above. We create what we fear.

So what you are describing in you post is the facts that fall out of the fact we are programmed to self destruct and the mechanism of avoidance of that fact is our fear of feeling fear.

So what do we do with that but completely deny the issue. But you are not. You see where we are going. But do you see that there is nothing at all that you can do about the sleeping machine all around you, that you live among the walking dead who are unconsciously intent on killing you and the world in the process? Do you see that the situation is absolutely hopeless, that our denial of our programming means the end of everything. What is your attitude toward hopelessness.

On a beautiful day perhaps you go for a walk or relax somewhere you like to be. The sky in blue the trees are green, white clouds float by. Children play unaware of the world we are creating for them. They do not fear in the joy of play. It is only the awake who suffer, the utter absurdity of the fact that out of our own self contempt we are destroying the world.

See the contempt for what it is, the bitterness of the loss of our childhood innocence, and yet, but for the attitude of mind, the world we lost is still there all around us. There is only love and we the broken-hearted.
 

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