The ever-Green hard left Leader of the Democratic Party's main coalition partner, Nichi Vendola, erstwhile militant of Rifondazione Comunista and now of Sinistra Ecologia e Libertà (SEL) has agreed to accept discussions on structural reform with Prime Minister Mario Monti provided Monti
"undertakes acts of self-criticism."
Turning to our guide and mentor on self-criticism we find that Mao explains
we must have in mind two purposes: first, "learn from past
mistakes to avoid future ones", and second, "cure the
sickness to save the patient". The mistakes of the past must
be exposed without sparing anyone's sensibilities; it is necessary
to analyse and criticize what was bad in the past with a
scientific attitude so that work in the future will be done more
carefully and done better. This is what is meant by "learn
from past mistakes to avoid future ones". But our aim in
exposing errors and criticizing shortcomings, like that of a
doctor curing a sickness, is solely to save the patient .... So long as a person who has made
mistakes does not hide his sickness for fear of treatment or
persist in his mistakes until he is beyond cure, so long as he
honestly and sincerely wishes to be cured and to mend his ways, we
should welcome him and cure his sickness so that he can become a
good comrade. .... '
Angels doesn't think Vendola was joking, though the Prime Minister did - at least he asked if he was.