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One of the first of many polls of voter preferences in Italy shows the collapse of the Democratic Party (PD). It has lost a third of its electorate in a year. If the elections were held today the PD would garner no more than 22%. Other parties that were part of the previous left electoral coalition have gained ground, notably Di Pietro's Italia dei Valori Party that has doubled consensus, now at 8%. The far left remains divided, although a coalition of some of the micro-realities could garner 6%. Another 3% would be lost under the threshold. The "centrist" party, UDC, has gained a few percentage points to nearly 8%. The rightwing coalition continues to enjoy popularity with Berlusconi's personal political entity, the PdL, at over 36%. The racist Lega Nord party has grown slightly to 9%.

This is all tentative, since a new law in the making has yet to be passed. It will determine strategies and tactics that may alter the present situation. But then the majority's bill is also tactical, very much a part of the process, just as the Porcellum electoral law was in 2006. However, it is unlikely to greatly alter the weight of the two blocks: a solid rightwing sweep with a fragmented left bleating about local victories in far-flung corners.

by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Wed Mar 4th, 2009 at 07:10:04 PM EST
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I'm not sure if you've seen these two articles by UCLA historian Perry Anderson (Editor of New Left Review) in LRB:
Both are big articles, I was wondering what you make of them, if of course you find the time and the inclination to check them out!

I note in passing that Anderson's article on the Cyprus issue was spot-on IMHO and an excellent introduction to the problem.

The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom - William Blake

by talos (mihalis at gmail dot com) on Thu Mar 5th, 2009 at 07:38:36 AM EST
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Thanks for pointing him out. I have just done a fast read through and find both articles on target. He even points out a little known fact theorized by a Palermo judge on what brought on the political institutional crisis in the Nineties: corruption had been financed by a flexible exchange rate, domestic inflation and deficitary finance. Realigning with Europe dried up resources for oiling the machine. This coupled with the fall of communism and the crackdown against organized crime by American policy makers put Italian politicos on the defensive. The Milan judges moved in on a system that was already in deep crisis.
by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Thu Mar 5th, 2009 at 06:05:49 PM EST
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