The Campaigner

The Campaigner

THE GREATFEAR and representatives of the leading Central Labor

Councils are present with speaking rights. Bruno Buozzi,

Italian men love to pass their time in coffee bars, FIOM leader and member of the CGL leadership, opens

with a rundown of events leading up to the occupation,

arguing politics, discussing soccer and cars and women.

When a woman enters such a bar for a coffee, she then tossesthecentralhistoricalissueonthetable.]

becomes the object of discussion, as each cazzista strives

to outdo the other and win their approval by most Buozzi: Now if the workers don't get paid, this is

adeptly formulating his line of approach to the woman, going to turn into a touchy situation, and the only

Preferring a wide range of acts of bravado and way out would be revolution.

alluding to his sexual prowess while striking Latin Lover

poses, the cazzista coyly induces up to the cold-staring [This embarrassing truth is the subject of the talks. For a

woman to make a half-joking play for her. After a week everyone present will try to change the subject.

suitable amount of banter and petty disagreement with Buozzi sets up one of the major loopholes by appealing to

the union-party agreement regulating responsibi!ity over

the others who pretend to dissuade him, he swells up

with masculine pride, raises one eyebrow and asks, economic and political struggles respectively.]

"How about a spin around the town in my Fiat?" The

woman, maintaining her equilibrium and perhaps Buozzi: Our intention is to keep the movement

• letting slip one glance of bemused disgust, exits, leaving within thefirst line mentioned and not allow it to go

her would-be courtiers to follow up on the game with beyond that. The movement is of an economic

knowing comments, reappraisals and laughter. Boys will nature and we metalworkers are too involved in it to

be boys. be able to give an opinion or make criticisms. We

But if the script of the tiresome comedy were changed askforyour solidarity because as things stand today

... If the woman, turning from her coffee cup, were to we stillfeelwe are moving alone. If it is necessary to

raise her glance, smile and utter a warm "yes!" ? ? ? move out of the economic field then the confedera-

This was essentially the psychological situation facing tion and party leadership must say so.

the entire Italian left in September 1920. After having

wooed the workers and teased the capitalists with tough [The leading argument in the first day of the talks will

cries of "dictatorship of the proletariat," "occupy the revolve around the sticky question: is this struggle

factories" and "revolution," the left found that both economic or is it political? If economic, the union

maintains leadership and continues the battle for wage

workers and capitalists had called the bluff. Caught, so

to speak, with their pants down, the leaders of the PSI, increases; if the General Staffdeems it political, then the

CGL and party factions had to think fast. PSI will have to translate its revolutionary rhetoric into

The meetings of the revolutionary "General Staff" in action. Enter Chignoli, union representative from the

Milan cannot be adequately summarized, for what Turin Central Labor Council. Chignoli elaborates on

Buozzi's evaluation of the workers' subjective state.]

happened in actual fact would seem hopelessly bizarre or

simply untrue. To really understand how the Italian

revolution was flushed down the drain, it is necessary to Chignoli: The metalworkers will not leave the

review, though necessarily in edited, shortened version, factories with just a pay raise, it will be necessary to

the documented minutes of those meetings; to see how win recognition of [workers'] control. It would be

the cazzista lurking under the revolutionary facade of extremely unlikely for the Turin workers to abandon

every Italian worker and leftist, when yanked out of the the factories without winning some conquests of a

barroom and thrust into the flow of revolutionary moral nature.

ferment, will compulsively follow the dictates of his

infantile neurosis. [For Chignoli this means extending the struggle. He

What follows, then, is the true account of the presents a motion, signed Chignoli-Tasca and already

meetings, annotated to supply necessary information voted by the Turin Central Labor Council.]

concerning the dramatis personae, the parts edited out,

and appropriate stage directions. Such commentary is Chignoli [reads the motion]: The representatives of

enclosed in brackets, the 120, 000 organized in the Turin Central Labor

Minutes of the Sept. 4, 1920 Session Council... to supply raw materials or necessary

[At the first meeting the CGL leadership poses the energy...affirm that...with the metalworkers'

problem of revolution. Members of the PSI leadership struggle a new era in the class struggle is opened

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