Italy and Austria Populist Election Movements Set to Rock The Establishment

in italy •  2 years ago

 It has been a big year for people power, much like when the wall came down in Berlin and the hands across the Baltic we have seen real non violent change. This time is hasn't been communism people want gone, they want a change from the political elite and careers politicians. These are events are portrayed as ignorance or protest votes but at the end of the day people have had enough. This weekend we have elections in Austria and Italy in that same vein.

Brexit was never meant to happen or Cameron wouldn't have pushed for it and Hillary Clinton, the poster child of a career politician who would stop at nothing was determined and entitled to to be US President. People have seen their vote matters by these two events and real change has happened. The ugly side is the nationalists (read racists) trying to ride on the curtails of these movements. This has been quickly curtailed for the most part. Clearly the violent protests in the US by leftists not accepting Trump's victory should be just as intolerable.

It should be understood that these ballots in Italy and Austria are just the first of many elections in the coming year over Europe. Three quarters of the Euro Area will go to the polls over the year.

The creaks in the project should be no surprise there have been many scholars that have warned that artificially forced change such Jacques Delores grand socialist redistribution project was doomed to failure. You simply cant force people to do what they don't believe is right forever, many thought the PIIGS crisis would do it in, the imbalance between the 'workers' of Europe and non workers, different cultures.

The Brexit vote told people that have been through austerity through largely no fault of their own that challenging the elite foundations of power can evoke change.


We asked a few months ago as Italy PM Renzi Banks On The Italy Referendum Poll, Does It Matter? and what happens to Paschi Bank?What we know is the reaction tends to be misunderstood and exaggerated, think the British pound after Brexit. Think the American stockmarkets hitting record highs and the US dollar 14 year highs since Donald Trump won. The MSM and political elite (left and right) said firstly it would never happen and if it did it would be a disaster. Early days but UK industry and US and UK amrkets are showing otherwise.

The theory is Italy’s referendum is about curbing the power of the Senate, we now have Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s promise to quit if he loses.
Matteo Renzi’s promise to quit if he loses. However it has become more than that it also about an attempt to shut off the anti-euro Five Star Movement after almost three years in power. It is seen by many as nothing more than a power grab by Renzi. If Renzi does score a surprise victory he will become one of Western Europe’s strongest leaders and may reshuffle his government, or even force early elections to seek a stronger parliamentary majority.

The “No” camp has been successful in bringing old combatants together including disgruntled members of  Renzi’s party. The No side includes  the anti-immigrant Northern League and ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi’s center-right Forza Italia. Berlusconi himself has said the reform would “lead to a dictatorship.” Leadership is coming Five Star’s co-founder Beppe Grillo from Renzi's main adversary, the anti-establishment Five Star Movement wants its own referendum on Italy’s membership of the euro.

Italians vote until 11 p.m. local time and exit polls will be released as soon the polling stations close. First projections of results are expected about an hour later, with final results due in the early hours of Monday.  Opinion polls before a two-week blackout predict defeat for Renzi. If it turns ugly President Sergio Mattarella may then ask Renzi himself or Finance Minister Pier Carlo Padoan to lead a new government to stabilize the situation before early elections.


Austria is a different beast and one that fosters fear given Adolph Hitler was Austrian. We are seeing a run off for President with Norbert Hofer aiming to become Western Europe’s first right-wing nationalist head of state since World War II. His campaign has been aimed at creating xenophobia after the wave of Muslim immigrants and threat of  global trade and the EU following Brexit. Hofer also is talking about a referendum on taking Austria out of the EU.

The Austrian election ends at 5 p.m. but it’s unlikely that officials will declare a winner before postal votes are tallied on Monday.

The threat is whether this is more than voters wanting change and whether any doubt about political stability in Italy and Austria becomes contagious and unsettles investors.

The establishment is Austria is done either way, whether or not Hofer defeats Alexander Van der Bellen of the Green Party in Austria or not Austria  will have its first president in seven decades who isn’t from either the Social Democrats or the People’s Party.

Van der Bellen just beat Hofer by just over 30,000 votes on May 22. This result was later annulled by the constitutional court after lawyers from Hofer’s Freedom Party showed irregularities in the way some of the roughly 4.5 million ballots were counted. Opinion polls earlier this month showed Sunday’s race was statistically tied.

Hofer, 45 has promised to dismiss governments he deems incapable of passing legislation and trigger new national elections. A much older Van der Bellenat 72 has pledged to block anti-EU forces from governing.

Come Monday morning it appears there will be more abrupt change and shudders through political and global establishments.

From the Traders Community News Desk Italy Charges Deutsche Bank Managers in Paschi Bank Fraud 

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