Motion Approved by the XXXth Congress of the PR

Motion Approved by the XXXth Congress of the PR
Rome, October 31 and November 1,2,3 and 4, 1984

ABSTRACT: The XXXth Congress records an important turning point in the Italian political climate. The tight grip of isolation in which the Radical Party's initiative was held in preceding years seems, at least for the moment, to have loosened. Important prospects seem to be opening up for the fight against death by starvation as well as that for proper justice and against emergency politics. With regard to the battle against starvation in particular, there are concrete possibilities of legislative action in Italy within a short time. The Congress's motion confirms the judgement that there exists in the country a regime of party rule, and it formulates on the basis of this analysis precise instructions for the local and regional elections scheduled for next Spring: the non-presentation of Radical Party candidates and the fight against the encroachment of party rule and its usurpation of government. One hopes for the creation of green and ecological lists of candidates gifted with effective political content a
nd able to offer an authentic alternative.

The Congress elects Giovanni Negri as Secretary and Giuseppe Calderisi as Treasurer.

("The Battles, the Victories and the Proposals of the Radicals as Seen in their Congressional Documents and Statute" - November 1985 - edited by Maurizio Griffo - Pamphlet published by the the Radical Party Treasury)


The Radical Party salutes the successes obtained in 1984 by an organised group of only 3,400 members and considers it an exceptional and precious reserve of strength to nourish hopes in the assertion of policies of justice, peace, and life in the face of the crisis gripping the Republic at this time: a crisis of values and ideals, first of all, and thus an institutional, political, economic, social and civil crisis. The fundamental factors in the balance sheet of a year of political struggle are:
the concrete possibility that today the Italian Parliament will decree life and not death for millions of people; the first inversion of tendency in the politics of emergency provisions and special laws with the new law on imprisonment while awaiting trial which was acquired thanks to efforts in the recent "Tortora
case" (1) as in the earlier "Negri case" (2); the fact that in extremely difficult conditions one million two hundred thousand Italians were able to identify with the Radical Party's proposals and candidates, thus again assuring us a significant presence in Europe; the opening with the "Andreotti case" (3) of a breach in the wall of the "omertà" of State and regime that it will not be possible to close up again.
The extraordinary convergence of many parliament members around the Piccoli law (4) and the time limits established for its being examined in Parliament which this time it should not be possible to ignore; the same commitment of the government, however seriously reduced and inadequate, restore the possibility and the hope that the words of Sandro Pertini (the Italian president, ed.) and Pope John Paul II, the Nobel Prize Winners appeal, the resolution of the European Party, the initiative of Italian mayors, and the five years of non-violent mobilisation are approaching a legislative result.

The Christmas of 1984 can and must be truly the Christmas of life. So that this may occur, as it can occur, it is indispensable that requests for approval of the essential features of the Piccoli law immediately reach the Parliament and the political parties from every idealistic camp, civil and religious.

The Congress therefor commits the federal executive organs, the associations and the Radicals to all put into action everywhere political and non-violent initiatives that will make possible this mobilisation and the achievement of this objective. It announces as of now a great popular march for a "Christmas of Life".

The party welcomes the testimony brought to this Congress by other parties - both in terms of attention and in terms of commitment - as a positive and concrete opportunity for dialogue, that, if confirmed, cannot help but produce positive effects. In fact we need new values, a new morality, new horizons of civility to block the crisis in which the Republic and the country find themselves. New policies and new ways of conceiving and of practicing politics are needed.

The name of the Italian democracy's crisis is government by party-rule. The upsetting of the rules of the game, the weakening of the institutions of representation, the degradation of a State ruled by law and the restrictions of civil liberties, have their origin in the pathological expansion of the parties and the eclipse of politics as a conflict of values and legitimate interests in the framework of democratic and parliamentarian rules. The political groups of both right and left, those of the so-called government and of the pretence of an opposition, all are responsible for this transformation of a democracy into a system of party rule and the degeneration of politics into power.

In the face of the crisis of the regime and of the parties themselves, who in turn have been occupied and even replaced by open and hidden power systems of which the P2 (5) was only the most clamorous example, the political organisation of the Radicals offers itself as the antithesis and the antidote.
Because of the Radical Party's history, its methods of political organisation, the way it has conducted itself in the country and its institutions, the goals and the values it represents, it is today the place where politics are free of the influences of power and are based on the affirmation of law and non-violence, the necessary cornerstones and obligatory ideals of every democracy in which liberty and the transformation of the rules of communal civil life are at home.

Therefore the Congress confirms the validity of the Code of Conduct assumed by the members of Parliament as a banneer and a tool of Radical dissent from the degenration into government by party-rule, and it invites the Radical MP's to continue and intebnsify their battles already underway in Parliament. The vote boycott in Parliament must be the premise and the incentive to a continuous and intensive committment on the institutional level to seize deocratic victories by putting leverage on the contradictions that are surely present in the party system.

The objectives of the Federal Party, the initiatives of the associations and members and parliamentarian actions must therefore be co-ordinated and considered complimentary, parts, that is, of a single political campaign.

Thus the Congress points to the country's tools for mobilisation as the only ones, along with non-violence, that can orient and sustain parliamentary action. For this purpose it gives a mandate to the Federal Council to prepare by the end of January 1985 legislative bills of popular origin in the fields of ecology and environment, health and information, justice and morals, as well as to explore the possibilities for promoting popular referendums on the same issues.

The Congress also asks the executive organs to study the possibilities of convening before the end of April a session on democracy in the political parties and in the trade unions.

Only by increasing actions that are, at one and the same time, popular, political and parliamentary, directed at striking the structures which sustain the regime, will it be possible to have a positive effect on the contradictions, to establish alliances and promote the closing of ranks in the country, before and beyond the political system, for the purpose of creating an anti-party-rule alternative movement capable of facing the crisis of the regime.

The local and regional elections represent an important occasion for the Radicals' fight against the systematic monopolisation of all the sectors of civil administration and of every common field of action and resource of the citizens. All independence has been frustrated, with frequently devastating effects on the utilisation of resources, on essential services, on the environment, on the quality of life and on health itself. Therefore it is necessary to increase the convictions and actions that led to the first campaign for casting blank votes in 1980 and more recently for the election boycott in the city of Naples.

The Radicals' watchwords will be: out with the parties from the municipalities, election boycott, denial of the legitimacy of dividing up the municipal agencies. In no case will the Radicals follow the policy of the other parties in occupying the municipalities. The Congress nevertheless hopes that the signs of
action and the will to an alternative that are arriving from the ecological movement can be turned into authentically alternative "green" or "blue" lists of candidates that are anti-party-rule and anti-militarist for the start of a new political process that
capable of breaking up the worn out equilibriums of traditional politics.

The Congress appeals to Radicals and non-Radicals who identify with these positions to do their utmost to assure their realisation. The Congress commits the party organs to use legislative initiatives as well to support the proposals for institutional and electoral reforms in Naples and to confront the institutional reform project for the municipal agencies with analogous measures.

Furthermore it commits them to begin the necessary procedures for a campaign to denounce the responsibility of local agencies for the devastation of the environment and all forms of pollution.
The Congress denounces the growing strength of pressure groups related to the war industry, which, in relaunching the image, the role and the power of the Armed Forces, is in reality proposing the definitive consolidation of the military-industrial complex as the basic point of reference for the political order and equilibrium.

It denounces the hypocrisy of those who publicly speak of peace whereas in Parliament they vote for or consent to the approval of the military budget.

The Congress commits the party:

1) take adequate initiatives to relaunch forcefully the issues and the positions of Radical anti-militarism for a drastic reduction and conversion of military expenditures;

2) in reviving the tradition of anti-military marches, to promote next Summer an international march against armaments, against death from starvation, in favor of the ecology and for human rights;

3) to solicit the involvement of social forces, religious organisations, and the pacifist movements in the promotion of actions, not excluding recourse to referendums, for the passing of a law that will discourage the exportation of arms from our country, or at least regulate it in the most rigorous manner.
The Congress points out that thanks to Radical initiatives, and to Radical initiatives alone, the raising of pensions and of minimum compensation to those without any other income is now on the agenda of the government and of all political parties and labor unions. The solemn commitments made before the Congress by
the representative of the political party that occupies the
presidency of Council of Ministers, with explicit reference to
the financial law of 1985 now under debate in the Chamber of Deputies, opens up concrete possibilities that Parliament will decree a Christmas of life for hundreds of thousands of pensioners who up to now have been forced to live in total poverty.

The Congress therefore commits the federal executive organs, the party's associations, and all Radicals to activate political and non-violent initiatives everywhere that will make it possible to pursue this objective.

The Congress denounces the vice whose grip is throttling all rights to freedom of information.

It is necessary to actuate every form of combat for the purpose of:

1) abolishing or else impeding the monopolisation of information on both public and private television;

2) using the parliamentary vigilance commission to win back the public radio-TV service which under the present system is shared out among the parties;

3) obtaining legislation to protect reputations, identities, truth, images, as well as the extension of the right to rectification of public and private radio-TV information;

In this framework, the Congress decides to confirm the national campaign for the cancellation of the RAI (public radio-TV, ed.) subscription tax as an essential instrument of mobilisation for enforcing respect of the right to information without which democracy cannot exist.

The Congress considers that the party, thanks to a tenacious and rigorous political fight, has passed through one of the most difficult periods in its history and has succeeded in safeguarding and strengthening all of its characteristics and its identity. Today it is necessary to create or collaborate in the formation of new initiatives and new groupings. The XXXth Congress therefore invites Radical members to commit themselves to forming associations, leagues and movements on the issues that most directly concern them.

It also gives a mandate to the federal organs - the Secretary, the Treasurer, the Committee, the Federal Council - to put into effect, with the beginning of the political campaign and the combat actions, all forms of co-ordination, organisation and support that favor the maximum involvement of Radical associations and members everywhere.

It gives mandates:

1) to the Secretary to convene a national assembly of the associations by mid-December;

2) to the Federal Council to dedicate one of its first meetings to the decision to be taken on the state of the party and the organisational tools;

3) for the study of the possible forms for a European dimension in the party.

The Radical Party notes the extraordinary success of the self-financing campaign undertaken by the party, its militants and members, its parliamentary representatives, and its sympathisers and supporters, when compared to the usual practices of the other parties and the results obtained in preceding years. The one billion lire less than the amount established by the Rimini Congress, however, obliges us to announce a financial requirement of three billion needed to wipe out debts and for financing of Radical political organisations and actions.

The Congress commits members to act on their own initiative in promoting the fund campaign; the ability of each member to collect 500 thousand lire a year through political initiatives would constitute a great phase of strengthening and growth for the party.

1) Enzo Tortora - a television personality and Radical Eurodeputy convicted and imprisoned for Mafia activities, later exonerated.

2) Toni Negri - imprisoned for terrorist activities; the Radical Party, as part of its fight against the laws of preventive detention, succeeded in having him elected to Parliament. Enjoying parliamentary immunity he was released from prison and promptly escaped to France where he is still living.

3) Giulio Andreotti - a prominent Christian Democrat leader

4) Piccoli law - providing funds for aid to starving populations.

5) P2 - A Masonic lodge responsible for atttempts at subverting the democratic institutions through terrorist acts.

© 1984 Partito Radicale. Tutti i diritti riservati