Italy’s Democratic primary handed victory to Elly Schlein, the most left-wing leader in the party’s history. Her success relied on mobilizing nonmembers — but she faces an uphill struggle overhauling a party long in thrall to corporate liberalism.
Lorenzo Zamponi is a research fellow in sociology and political science at the Scuola Normale Superiore in Florence.
When a road bridge in Genoa collapsed in August 2018, killing 43 people, reports soon exposed the negligence of its private managers. Today, the government is part-renationalizing the road maintenance firm in question — a tiny step away from neoliberalism that has sparked wild claims of a “Venezuela-style” attack on business.
In last night’s debate, Joe Biden claimed that Italy shows public health care doesn’t help the response to coronavirus. But the Italian health service is providing a vital defense against mass infection — ensuring that any ill person can get proper treatment, regardless of their ability to pay.
Parts of the business press have painted the Italian Democrats’ new leader as a local Jeremy Corbyn or Bernie Sanders. They’re being too kind.
Though companies like Deliveroo or Foodora refuse even to recognize them as employees, food delivery riders have taken a lead in organizing workers in the gig economy.
Resignation, not hope, was the big winner in Italy’s general election.