GRAMSCI: The significance of mass emigration of workers is this: the capitalist system, which is the dominant system, is not capable of giving food, housing and clothing to the population, to a not insignificant part of this population which is forced to emigrate ...
ROSSONI: So the nation must expand in the interests of the proletariat.
GRAMSCI: We have our own conception of imperialism and colonialism, according to which these are above all an export of finance capital. Until now Italian "imperialism” has consisted only on this: the Italian emigrant worker works for the profit of the capitalists of other countries, that is, until now Italy has only been a means of expansion for non-Italian finance capital. You rinse your mouths with declarations of a claimed demographic superiority of Italy over other countries; you always say, for example, that Italy is demographically superior to France. This is a question which only statistics can finally resolve, and I sometimes deal with statistics; now a statistic published after the war, and never denied, and which can not be denied, states that pre-war Italy from the demographic point of view, was already in the same situation as France after the war; this is determined by the fact that emigration removes from the national territory such a mass of the male, economically active, population, that the demographic relations become catastrophic. In the national territory there remain the old, women, children, invalids, that is the inactive part of the population, which weighs on the population to a greater degree than in any other country, even France.
And this is the fundamental weakness of the Italian capitalist system, for which Italian capitalism is destined to disappear even more rapidly as the world capitalist system no longer manages to absorb Italian emigration, to exploit Italian labour, which our capitalism is incapable of organizing.
The bourgeois parties, freemasonry, how have they tried to resolve these problems?
In Italian history we know about the last two political plans of the bourgeoisie to resolve the question of the governance of the Italian people. We have had the Giolitti programme, the collaboration of Italian socialism with Giolittismo, that is the attempt to establish an alliance of the industrial bourgeoisie with a certain northern labour aristocracy to oppress, to subject to this bourgeois-proletarian grouping the mass of the Italian peasantry, especially in the Mezzogiorno. The programme did not succeed. In southern Italy a bourgeois-proletarian coalition was established through parliamentary collaboration and the politics of public works; in southern Italy the leading class is corrupted and dominates the masses with goons...[Interruptions of Deputy Greco] You fascists have been the major authors of the failure of this political programme, as you have impoverished equally the labour aristocracy and the poor peasantry of all of Italy.