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Abstract disponibile solo in lingua inglese
Italy's "historical" Liberals must be under some illusions: the first, that the crisis of Communism is the prelude to a strong liberal renaissance; the second, that Italian society is potentially liberal; the third, that this Liberal Party has the culture, the intelligence and the political will to seize the opportunity. In reality, post-communism is succeeded by post-liberalism – that is, a pragmatism without ideals. Historically, however, liberalism nurtures a bias in favour of society and against the State. Yet, if Liberals were not somehow blinded by their cultural tradition, they would see that the greatest dangers to the citizen's liberty and the assertion of his civil rights old and new come, in Italy today, more from society – that is, from the unregulated antagonism of private interests – than from the State. What is most necessary, therefore, is a Liberal Party acting as a spokesman for all those who find themselves in a position of minority, a party having the courage to break up the social and power bloc that has been governing the country for the last forty years, and to break away from the illiberal transformist and elitist culture that is dominant today.