Hello from Barcelona,
this is the weekly newsletter that will inform you about the activities of 15M movement in Barcelona, Catalonia and occasionally the main events in Spain. If you do not wish to receive it anymore, please say so.
1. Surrounding the Congress week.
2. The “KM 0″ idea: tradicional production and local consumption.
3. Hackafou meeting: for technological self-sufficiency
1) SURROUNDING THE CONGRESS WEEK
The end of September was very important for Spanish and European revolutionary movements.
The 25S event, started off as a Facebook call through a public event, has grown until the creation of the Coordinadora 25S (25S-coordination group) in order to develop the action and coordinate strengths, becoming open to all assemblies, collectives, plataforms and people who would like to collaborate ( NL #5, 4 http://bit.ly/Rkb1cW ).
In fact, a few incidents happened before the demontrations: on the September 15th union demo (NL #27,5 http://bit.ly/OIPdCi ) 4 people were arrested for carrying a banner saying “25S RODEA EL CONGRESO”; during the afternoons of the 16th (http://bit.ly/QekwWZ ) and the 23rd (http://bit.ly/U2r7dG ) police – acting illegaly – asked all the people from the organization platform to show their ID cards, irrupting in an open assembly in Madrid’s Retiro Park; on the 25th many of the buses to Madrid from other cities in Spain were stopped by Police, people frisked and identified, masks of V de Vendeta and banners confiscated.
Despite all this, on Sept 25th thousands of protestors converged at Spain’s parliament building (the Congress) in Madrid to denounce austerity and the kidnapping of popular sovereignty by the Troika and the Markets. At midday the Congress was already sorrounded… by 1500 policemen. Meanwhile, people were still arriving from other cities of Spain. After a popular meal at Paseo del Prado and informative assemblies, the march started from the different meeting points, going to Neptuno square were the Congress is, At 6pm Neptuno was totally occupied by people with hands up and a human chain surrounded the police block of the governamental building.
Suddenly, after hours of blockade and when the action was finishing, riot police charged brutally the peaceful crowd in Neptuno square, in Sol and in all the streets around. Detentions and agressions went on for hours. Rubber and dust bullets were used. Police dragged people out of bars and invaded the Atocha underground station. The police’s strategy was to disperse people by any means, first dividing, then beating. This police action has been reported by people affected by the illegal identifications, hitting and detentions. A website has been created to collect reports and the witnesses of this police brutality, illegal identifications and arrests. (http://denuncia25s.wordpress.com/ )
A small assembly of about 40 people took place around midnight in Sol and decided to go back to the Congress the day after.
Meanwhile, in Barcelona, Sevilla, and other cities in Spain, thousands of people demonstrated outside their local governmental buildings. And Spain is not alone: other cities in Europe followed the Spanish idea with similar actions: London, Brussels, Amsterdam, Varsovia and Lisbon held blockades during these last few weeks.
On Sept 26th a press conference took place during the morning, stating that the 25S action was considered a success. Soon thousands of people were back at Neptuno square, around the Congress (http://ow.ly/i/Y8Yt ). Police charged again, following the same routines as the previous day, which had shocked the international press and made the headlines worldwide.
On Sept 29th the call was at 6pm at Neptuno square, to sorround the Congress again on a Saturday, expecting thus even more peopl. Thousands of people replied to the call. At the end of the day a manifesto was read, demanding a direct democracy, to recover the sovereignty kidnapped by the economical powers, to stop making decisions without caring about the people’s opinion, to stop ruling not for the people but for the financial markets, to stop represion and criminalization. This is why the Coordinadora 25S asks the whole government to resign, as it is no longer obeying the people, the voters, but the 1%. The end of the manifesto announced another surrounding that will take place the day that the National Budgets are discussed.
One of the biggest news of this week has been the triumph of streaming. Everything has been streamed: not only by the PeopleWitness (NL 1, 4 http://bit.ly/LJQ3Pw ) and the “Toma la Tele” (occupy the television) reporters as usual, but also the official massmedia used it for the first time. The live streaming channels of ICBcn (International commission of Acampadabcn), Audiovideo Sol and Toma la Tele were broadcasting all the time, with a bigger number of streamers than ever, catching many of the most controversial police actions: attacks on senior citizens and kids, random rage against people who were walking away form the area, riot police raids inside bars near the area, even the control and identification inside the buses heading for Madrid were streamed and recorded.
The worst part was during the 25S blockade itself, when 35 people were arrested and 64 injured, 27 of them policemen. “The strange case of the injured policemen“ was indeed very interesting for the foreign press: they were undercover policemen, often agents provocateurs hit by their own companions. The video of police agents beating with batons an undercover agent thrown on the ground while shouting to them “I am your companion, damn” (“que soy compañero, coño”) has in this very moment more than 20.400 viewers and the news went around the world (http://bit.ly/QzYKQL )
There has also been a very important support showed by people who are not directly involved in the demontration nor the movement. In this sense, the story of the bar waiter Alberto Casillas, a former right wing party voter,who protected several demonstrators from the police by granting them refuge in his bar and stopping the police from entering is an exemple of the society’s behaviour. His picture appared all over the globe (http://vimeo.com/50272076 ) and activists flooded into his bar the following days to hug him and thank him for his dignity. Sadly, on the 29th this same man was hit by the police while trying to talk to some cops who were barging into the bar to identify the people that were there, as the Prado bar had become a sort of symbol.
All in all, the concentrations had a huge amount of people attending the call, citizens are showing the government they want to control their own lives, that they have no fear anymore, that they are going to stand for their rights and dignity.
- Coordinadora 25S blog : http://coordinadora25s.wordpress.com/
- Barcelona 25S blog : http://25sbcn.wordpress.com/
- Madrid call 25S poster: http://bit.ly/PSPvZX
- Other cities calls: http://coordinadora25s.wordpress.com/fuera-de-madrid/
- 25S Storyline Madrid http://bit.ly/SyEoDo [EN]
- Manifesto read on Sept 29th at Neptuno Plaza : http://bit.ly/Vb4Vvw [EN]
- 26S press conference: http://bit.ly/QlGH0y [SP]
- Spanish and Portuguese demonstrate against austerity measures: http://bit.ly/TSD0CO [DE]
- Spain reels at violent tactics by riot police : http://bit.ly/QcMe7L [EN]
- Spain Protests: Madrid Barman Alberto Casillas Becomes National Hero for Defying Police : http://bit.ly/Q8rHB5 [EN]
- Spain police fire rubber bullets at Madrid protest : http://bbc.in/NOkKqp [EN]
- 29S Madrid: http://bit.ly/PDDKFD by @fotograccion
- 25 S Barcelona: http://bit.ly/QFNn9J by @fotomovimiento
- 29S Barcelona : http://bit.ly/SWa8YM by @fotomovimiento
- People clebrating the Barman who protect the people: http://bit.ly/QUidbK
- 25S Autobuses stopped by Police on its way to Madrid: http://bit.ly/PjNMLV
- Still nobody expects the Spanish Revolution (Video diary) : http://bit.ly/SEaNsZ [EN]
- Madrid on the brick : http://bit.ly/WsAPmY [EN]
- AudioVideoSol : http://www.livestream.com/spanishrevolutionsol
- ICBcn : http://www.livestream.com/ICBcn
- Toma La Tele : http://www.tomalatele.tv/web/
- 29S by @okokitsme: http://bambuser.com/v/3021528
@25sbcn @rodeaelcongreso @coordinadora25s @peoplewitness
@acampadabcn_int @voces25s @democraciareal
#25S #sinmiedo25S #watch25S #26S #sinmiedo26S #29S #watch29S #vamos29S
2) THE “KM 0” IDEA: TRADICIONAL PRODUCTION AND LOCAL CONSUMPTION
A new way to consume is a growing trend, but it is actually an old one: buying, consuming, producing and promoting local quality products.In case of food. we usually call this Km 0.
First of all, it is necessary to make people aware that producing food (agriculture or ranching products) in a traditional way is highly healty, not only for the consumer but also for the environment. And not just during the production process: the transport at medium, large and very large distances is very polluting, and so is preserving food in bottles, cans or cartons, or simply in a refrigerator.
If we talk about costs, it is absolutly more profitable to produce according to the seasons, saving artificial energy, and selling it without extra costs for transport and preservation.
It’s true that consuming local produce reduces the choice, offering in every season and place just what grows in the natural cycle. But this is just apparently a limit, it is actually an advantage. Let’s think that we are natural beings, and as such our local environment offers us just what we need to keep us in good health: seasonal earth products give us all the specifical nutrients that we need in a specific season. We have to admit that lately people are more carefull when buy food, looking at nutritional characteristics, origin of the products, way if production and eventually biological certifications.
Consumer cooperatives are spreading everywhere and local markets are preferred to supermarkets. The taste of an apple is preferred to its perfect shape and colour.
On the other side of production is the famous case of Monsanto: through genetical modification of seeds, this company garantees that after a couple of years the producers will be forced to provide themselves with more seeds, as the plants grow beautiful but sterile and their seeds will be useless. This is how Monsanto is creating a monopoly on the seeds market, as the natural ones are disappearing, and thus damaging the natural biodiversity. When the local farmers get ruined, Monsanto buys their lands. Besides this, several studies conclude that some of their products are not healthy at all, and aren’t good for the land. The Occupymonsanto initiative, among many other, are trying to stop this kind of globalization practises that destroy the natural environment and harm the people’s health.
Once again the economical interests of an elite try to predominate. And, once again, people’s consumer habits are the only thing that has the power to change it.
- Local food for local consumption : http://vimeo.com/36553343 [EN]
- The world according to Monsanto : http://bit.ly/yoKIji [EN]
- Occupymonsanto: http://occupy-monsanto.com/ [EN]
- Organic Consumers Association: http://www.organicconsumers.org/ [EN]
- To what degree is food central to the current changes in consumption?: http://bit.ly/VM6XCD [EN]
3) HACKAFOU MEETING: FOR TECHNOLOGICAL SELF-SUFFICIENCY
From October 12th to 14th will be held in Calafou, located in Vallbona d`Anoia (an hour by train from Barcelona), the 13th edition of the Hackmeeting.
Hackafou aims to bring people together in a natural and self-managed place hosted by different cooperatives.
As we can read in his web site: is a free and self-organised gathering around new technologies, their social implications, free circulation of knowledge and techniques, privacy, collective creation and telematic conflict. It is open to all those curious people that wish to share their skills and experiences and live the process of coordination in a participative way.
Among the scheduled activities are talks, workshops, discussions and many other types. You can have a look in their archives and see the materials registered during previous editions to get some idea what is it all about. It is important to emphasize that all the nodes are held by the volunteers and they call a “node” to every event organised during a hackmeeting.
As they remind Hackmeeting is not about money and so it is free of fees, but at the same time it is supported by its participants. The funds for the materials are usually obtained with the Tshirts sell: shirts of very unique hackmeeting design. However, most of the material is donated or dumpsterdived and donated. Moreover you can contribute in every possible way your imagination can afford!
- Hackafou website: http://bit.ly/PfoIFZ [SP, EN, CAT]
- Hackafou program: http://bit.ly/RhAwZ2 [SP, EN, CAT]
- Hackafou poster: http://bit.ly/SxdCBu
- How to get there: http://bit.ly/QO3Poj [EN]
- Hackafou FAQ: http://bit.ly/OghXqm [EN]