Juan

#joinus. Why your country may consider to join the protests taking place in Spain?

In Uncategorized on May 20, 2011 at 12:04 am

To explain it briefly, because we are fighting for pure common sense. Our concerns are political responsibility and civil participation. We are neither a group of fascists nor communists. We are not just angry young people or irritated elderly. Instead, we are just citizens that have understood that democracy, as it is practiced globally nowadays, is not a real democracy; we are citizens that have understood that, although we can vote, our votes are scarce and, in the long run, do not matter at all. It is very simple: we have understood that our right to vote is independent from the political class and us.

As this last worldwide crisis or the Oscar-winning documentary Inside Job have made clear, today politicians are more connected to criminals in the financial sector than to the people who legitimize their presence and activities in a true democracy. The consequences of that have been the loss of our basic social rights, the enrichment of a few, the condemnation to poverty for an innumerable amount of people, and an increasing political corruption in the majority of the countries of the so-called First World. However, this situation has not affected the absurd and abusive privileges of the political class and has increased the preponderance of sheer electoral motivations in the political arena, thus leading the situation of total disconnection between politics and society to the highest point permissible in a XXI c. advanced Western society. Paradoxically, while the voices of the people are perfectly regulated every four years by a vote, Wall Street votes every morning with no regulation, and in this manner, its voice has way more impact on our living conditions than anything else.

What we demand is straightforward: it can be found on the Proposals section of democraciarealya.es (link to the English translation in google docs), in the manifesto approved by the assembly that originated at Puerta del Sol, Madrid, on the 18th of May (the third day of demonstrations) or in this blog. Why  we are demanding these things is also clear: apart from the above mentioned motivations, anyone who has a grasp of Spanish can find the reasons in the extensive report (Pre)parados published by El País,  in the letter sent by Susan George to the European Commission, in our map of corrupted politicians or in the response that Beatriz García gave to Barceló’s fears . Who we are is also very clear: our age span ranges from José Luis Sampedro (Barcelona, 1917) to the 5 minor age protesters that were arrested on the night of the 15th May in Puerta del Sol; our social and labor conditions are very different, as it is revealed by a follow up of the Spanish TT from the 15th. Now, we wonder this: if all this is that clear and we´ve been repeating it during the last five days, why the media carry on lying about what we demand, why we demand it and who we are?; and why do politicians disapprove and forbid our demonstrations (link to the New York Times)?

It seems that media are lying because they have not understood what our demonstrations are about yet. Obviously, their reports lack legitimacy due to their ties to the economic interests of their corporations. But we all know that. What is seems to be happening is that there is a referential problem by which it is clear that the media does not share the same vocabulary that we are using Thus, the Media are unable to narrate the events because, to a great extent, they are also disconnected from the civic body. It is ridiculous to follow their attempts to tag the protesters (antiglobalizationists, youngsters, students, unemployed…), or their desperation to find a leader in a movement whose principal characteristic is its horizontality. It is offensive how they intend to narrate these events from the same point of view that has made these people so detached from our reality. It is laughable to see how they attempt to identify problems that, for very long, we have been familiar with, because we have them in our daily discourse and they are part of our daily lives.

It is laughable to see how they try to identify now a sensation of being apart that has been growing worldwide at least for the last 20 years.  Indeed, it is grotesque to be a witness to their insisting in making the same old questions to new issues, therefore preserving a discourse in which we are not interested grotesque to be a witness to their insisting in making the same old questions to new issues, therefore contemplating a discourse in which we are not interested. I do not think we should wait for them to provide us with a relevant response to the current situation. Rather, I believe we should request that they spread what Twitter says, but please, without altering the documents there displayed. Moreover, we should ask for them to stop turning our demonstration into something confusing and imprecise ―as they have done up to the present. Maybe this is asking for too much, since, they are not going to become against those who give them their salary; but they should realize this is also relevant to them, even if it is only to ensure their own survival.

On the other hand, politicians disapprove what is happening because they understand that this fight is against them and not against the system they represent. This is why they are scared. They know we do not want a different system. They know we want democracy; but not their democracy, the democracy that obliges us to choose the puppets at the service of a bunch of financial criminals. We want to decide within the frameworks in which decisions are taken. And if this is not possible now, we want to create such frameworks. We want this because, if we have to serve someone, we do not want to serve someone else´s servant. We do not want to be employees who only choose their office or department boss. We want to select the factory’s president, because it is evident to us that we, and not them, are the factory of society. That this has become evident is something politicians do not like.

Obviously, this dynamics of fighting will not be eternal; it will come to an end. However, it is important that, when that happens, we are able to achieve something that will remind us why we are in the streets today, why we are still sitting in, resolute that May 15th is not just one more protest.  We want either the materialization of our demands or the creation of new laws and institutions in which our will is expressed. In addition, we want to change the social and economic scenario that has made us take this initiative. May 15th must be the beginning of an arduous fight for us to be consider true social actors, and not as merchandise in the hands of politicians and bankers. The point of departure towards having a president who believes that we, the people, have the right to decide in relevant issues for our countries, that we are something else than just a vote each four years, most of the time having to choose among corrupted individuals subjected to the interests of the financial power instead of answering our petitions. We intend, for Spain and for the rest of the world, to be a democracy one day, and not a part of this global system of demos against cracy we currently live in.

We are aware that our claims are not something special or out of the ordinary. They are very specific requests, just pure common sense. And we will continue to protest until we achieve them, either in mass demonstrations or sleeping in the street. The most important thing now is to remain calm and carry on our demonstration by pacific means. The fight goes on.

Juan, affiliated only to indignation.

Translated by Esther, as indignant as him

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