Volume 16, Number 2, Spring, 1998


Libertarian sf in Italy

Libertarianism is growing in Northern Italy, the place called now “Padania” by its own citizens. There’s now in fact the Padania Liberale e Libertaria, a libertarian movement led by Leonardo Facco and Carlo Lottieri and others inspired by the Murray Rothbard and David Friedman’s school of political philosophy. Private property is defended, the free market fully promoted, and the aim is to eliminate the State. Liberalism and anti-statism, then, are the starting points from which the Padanian libertarians aim to achieve freedom for the new body politic.

Leonard Facco’s (movement’s leader) declared:

“In the Constitution of Padania, the absolute right of self-determination will be recognized. We shall also insist on the application of authentic federalism, and we shall fight for market liberalization and privatization.

We shall be the watchdog against any attempts at statism. What satisfies me the most is that Padania Liberale e Libertaria succeeded in electing a member of Parliament in every electoral district in which it was present and as many as four in the province of Milan. We are the only electoral group that can claim this record. We improvised nothing. Behind us is an intellectual movement that has been active for years. The candidates emerged from this community.”

Padania Liberale Libertaria is a real libertarian movement (not a Party, but only a movement of thought with no membership cards or European Party’s structures), a very strange phenomenon in Europe.

A group of “friends of Padania Liberale Libertaria” have started a mailing list on the Internet: pdnliberliber@coollist.com (to subscribe send a message to amingard@tin.it with “subscribe pdnliberliber” in the subject). They’re making a website about libertarianism with articles from David Friedman, Tibor Machan, L. Neil Smith and Lysander Spooner—translated for the first time into Italian by Carlo Lottieri, Guglielmo Piombini, Marco Faraci, and Alberto Mingardi.

Another libertarian campaign, coordinated by Marco Faraci, is against the obligatory military service. There’s an association called “Né giusta né utile” which is starting a website and a mailing list.

Libertarians also are creating an interesting magazine, Enclave, published by Leonardo Facco. My personal objective is to speak about Libertarianism via entertainment and in essays. Enclave will include an “open space” about libertarian science fiction, a space in which to publish short stories.

I would like to request American libertarian sf fans and writers to contribute libertarian short stories on science fiction and fantasy, and articles on libertarian entertainment, not only to Enclave but also to other Italian fanzines and prozines.

This will demonstrate to Italian sf readers that there’s more than the sf that is published in Italy now. In fact, here fantasy usually is anti-modernist and fascist or Catholic (not like Michael Novak, like Mr. LeFebre), and science fiction is usually communist and apocalyptic. It dreams about the fall of capitalistic society, but without showing how.

The most famous Italian writer is now Valerio Evangelisti. He wants to write “intelligent entertainment for intelligent people.” He has invented the character of Nycolas Eymeric, quite popular here and about to be translated and published in France and Germany. Evangelisti’s books are usually interesting and nice, but with a communist viewpoint.

In Italy, science fiction, in the professional world, is usually promoted only by the Right (They have a section in Alleanza Nazionale’s newspaper—Il Secolo d’Italia—every Sunday. An interesting section edited by Errico Passaro, a good young writer from Rome is open to Libertarians and—yes, isn’t it incredible—to Leftist writers too. Compliments then to Passaro!), or the Communist Left, in a newspaper, Avvenimenti, which is very closed to everyone who doesn’t think “red,” and whose favorite sport is the hunt for fascists (for Avvenimenti, perhaps Trotsky was a fascist).

That’s another matter of the importance of Enclave. It is important to propose to readers another sort of science fiction, and to show libertarians that sf is sometimes near libertarianism (of course, nearer than the mainstream).

We’d like to start an “exchange” between northern Italian libertarian sf readers/writers and other libertarian sf writers and readers. We can’t pay for your help, but of course we’ll send you a copy of the magazine. To send us your article or your short stories to translate and publish, this is the address:

Alberto Mingardi
P.O. Box Lecco 2
Zip 23900
Country (up to now) Italy
Email address is amingard@tin.it

I hope only that we’ll start a useful “exchange” with all the people reading this. Let’s see you in Padania one day!

Thanks and best regards,
Alberto Mingardi

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