Today is local elections day in Spain. The electoral campaign has been empty of content and centered only and exclusively in the fight for power, leaving aside the needs and demands of the citizens.
Last Sunday, May 15, a large group of unhappy and indignant citizens demonstrated in mayor Spanish cities to protest peacefully against the current political and economic system. Demonstrations were organized by the platform ¡Democracia Real Ya! (Real Democracy Now!). The next day, thousands of people occupied indefinitely the main squares of the country. Today, one week later, there are stable campsites in more than 60 cities throughout Spain.
What’s behind the #spanishrevolution?
To understand what is happening these days in Spain it is necessary to know the situation of the country since the beginning of the economic crisis:
An overprotected and enriched political class that diminishes the population's fundamental rights. They act throwing the blame at each other, supporting the economic measures imposed by the IMF as the only possible solution to leave the crisis behind, therefore, making the citizens pay for what bankers and speculators caused.
A banking system protected by unjust, abusive laws that the government doesn't dare to modify. A banking system rescued by the government with public money that continues slaughtering the citizens with high interest rates and abusive clauses within personal loans and mortgage contracts. These outrageous conditions have led the local economy to achieve a delinquency rate record of more than 6% (112.458 million euros). A banking system whose CEOs and main executives continue to share millionaire bonuses while the amazed population witnesses the collapse of the foundations of the welfare state.
- An unsustainable social situation, with the highest unemployment rate of the EU, surpassing 20% of the population, with workers’ salary cuts and with a dismissal policy tailor-made to the companies needs and with the approval of the big workers unions.
It is expected that tomorrow the organization will issue an official manifesto. Meanwhile, some of the proposals that come up in the assemblies that take place in the campsites are:
- To eliminate the privileges of the political class
- To fight against unemployment
- The right to have a decent place to live
- Quality of the public services
- Control of the banking system
- To reform the income tax Act
- Citizens liberties and participatory democracy
- Military budget cut
This type of civic movement is unprecedented in the current “democratic” period. The main objective of this free, volunteer, civic and spontaneous movement is to impel a deep social and political change by means of the regeneration of the Spanish democracy through concrete proposals carried out directly by the citizens in the campsites.
This movement has passed over the Spanish borders. At the moment there are in the entire world more than 300 campaigns inspired by the Spanish movement #spanishrevolution.
All campsites seek to continue their activities beyond May 22 to continue fighting for the objectives mentioned above.
In the next post I’ll try to elaborate on the proposals and on what this movement is not about.