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Saturday, June 4, 2016

Lessons in Rome Politics, 2: Marchini's "Liberi"

In the last lesson in the ultra-sophisticated politics of Rome's mayoral race, we examined the posters of Alfredo Iorio: all invasion all the time.  Today, we take up the equally complex posters of Alfio Marchini. Marchini has a better chance of becoming mayor than Iorio, but that isn't saying much. The newspapers still take him seriously, but in the last poll the former polo player had only 11% of the expected vote.  He's handsome but apparently that's not enough.
Norman Rockwell:
Freedom of Speech

Marchini has spent a lot of money on posters.  His campaign theme is "liberi," which means "free." It's a worthy theme.  In American history, the concept of freedom was used effectively by Norman Rockwell in four 1941 covers for the Saturday Evening Post  (Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want, Freedom from Fear) and in 1968 by Martin Luther King, Jr. ("free at last, free at last, thank God almighty we are free at last").

Marchini joins this distinguished company with his "liberi" campaign, mostly using the word as in "free to...."  One might imagine "free to get a good education," or "free to find stable employment," or "free to access quality medical care."  But that's not Marchini's approach.

Instead, one poster suggests the citizens be "Liberi nel dire no agli abusivi"--that is, free to say no to abuses.  The word "abusivi" is commonly used to refer to illegal construction or to restaurants that put tables on the street without the permission of the city government.  Maybe that's what Marchini means.  And maybe not.  Pick your abuse.



This one (below) says "Liberi di chiudere i campi nomadi":  Free to close nomad camps.  This is a curious form of freedom, indeed.  Donald Trump would like it, as in "Free to build a wall to keep out the Mexicans."  

The next one is more complex: "Liberi da chi ti ha tradito."  Free from those who have betrayed you.
Not clear who the betrayers are, but who cares?

In the next poster, we get a hint of who has betrayed the "voter":  "Liberi dai partiti."  Freedom from the parties.  Anti-government is a big theme this year, all over the world.



But's it's not all negative.  Here we have "Liberi di puntare sui giovani": Free to focus on youth, or perhaps free to rely on youth.

How about "Free to play polo"?   Bill



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