The Fascist State (part 2)
The Fascist State (part 2)
Battle for the grain 1925- Agricultural policy linked to Autarky. Annual wheat competitions were held and farmers were subsidised by government. The fascists provided education on new farming techniques.
Mussolini's other major agricultural policy concerned 'ruralisation' and land reclamation and improvement schemes. In 1928 Mussolini launched the 'empty the cities' campaign preventing internal migration from Italy's rural areas to the cities.
Only around 5% of the claimed 475 million hectares was actually improved and only 10,000 landless peasants were given land through the scheme
Over half a million people left Italy's rural areas and more than 50% of the population were not involved in the agricultural industry
Autarky-The hope that Italy would become more self-sufficient and by able to rely less on imports-the Battle for Grain, increased currency control, quotas on foreign imports, searches for new energy sources Government spending on autarkic measures was doubled from 30 billion lire in 1934 to 60 billion lire by 1938. -Was not a success as they were still importing oil, coal and iron and overseas goods remained cheaper
Battle of Lira 1926-27
-Made countries pay double for cars/products from Italy
-Revalued the Lira
-Tariffs on imports were introduced
It was Italian businesses that benefited most from the PNF's economic policies
The government cut workers wages by around 12% in November 1930 and encouraged price fixing and cartelisation.
Employment was also found through public work schemes such as road building, house construction and electrification of 5,000 km of railway.
Battle for the Births 1927- Mussolini's idea to encourage the Italians to have larger families, so that Italy's population could be 60 million by the 1950's. Also military strength could be boosted by a larger population.
Mothers with large families received prizes and from 1928 employed men were given tax concessions if they had a family of 7 children or more. All forms of birth control were banned. By the 1930's Italy had the highest proportion of married females in employment than any other European country.
The laws of December 192 changed the structure of central government. Mussolini was now only accountable to the King not parliament
In May 1928 parliament was changed to be made up of 400 deputies chosen by the Fascist Grand Council
In December 1928 the Grand Councils role was formalised in the constitution as the most important legal body in the state
The ras were the local governments and they organised the police, censored local press and suppressed antifascist activity. Local councils were ran by the podesta.
Nationalist Luigi Federzoni was appointed Minister of the Interior in June 1924
Relationship with the Catholic Church
Mussolini and the Catholic church signed the Lateran Pact incorporating three sections - a treaty, a financial convention and a Concordat
For Mussolini the Lacteran Pacts were a great success as he had solved the Roman Question
Mussolini brought in a range of policies that were favourable to the church - Religious education reintroduced into state secondary schools, crucifixes were restored to public buildings and priests had an increase in their pay.
The Lateran Pacts were also a success for the Catholic church and they could extend their role and influence on Italian life
Concordat - The main area of tension which remained was the Catholic Action's youth organisations and there was also disagreements over girls involvement in physical activities of the Fascist Youth organisations
In October 1925 the government recognised the Fascist syndicates as the only representative body for Italian workers, which was known as the Palazzo Vidoni Pact. Catholic, socialist and communist trade unions were now irrelevant.
Strikes, go-slows and lockouts were banned and the syndicates would have no say in government policy
April 1926 the Rocco law was passed which allowed syndicates some rights of representation and the ability to negotiate in disputes concerning pay and conditions at special labour tribunals
In October 1925 fascist squads murdered 8 liberals in Florence, this added to the unpopularity of fascist violence
Mussolini dismissed Farinacci and appointed Turati who was more reliable