Hello from Barcelona,
This is the (almost) 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. “We are not back, we never left” – #12M15M
2. Madrid wants a public health care system. Almost a million votes prove it
3. A Paper Tiger to be read: a cooperative publishing house
1. “WE ARE NOT BACK, WE NEVER LEFT” – #12M15M
On May 12th Spanish people took the streets again in dozens of cities.
This call has been a kind of celebration of the #15M movement, born in Spain 2 years ago. London, Brussels, Dublin and other cities around the world also celebrated the 15M’s second anniversary in the streets. Barcelona had announced five days of action (see NL#44, 3) to celebrate two years of working together.
After the press conference on the 10th, the square was filled on May 11th with several conferences, debates and information points. Some of the working groups took the chance to launch their campaigns for the next months. (#11M15M , #12M15M)
On May 12th the camp in Barcelona ended to give way to a theater play and a performance by Che Sudaka. Soon after the demonstration started under the slogan “Stop the financial genocide”. After the demo, a building in the old town was occupied with the support of over a hundred people from the demo, but it was evicted early in the morning two days after. As the coordinators of #Okupem12Msquat had planned lots of activities, they are carrying them out in the streets and squares nearby ( #Yovoy12M #12MBcn, #Razones12M, #okupem12M).
On the days that followed, decentralized actions were programmed:
On May 13th Iaioflautas did the action #IaiosPaBoi against Boi Ruiz, the health care minister for the local government Generalitat of Catalunya, who is responsible of the privatization and the budget cuts in Catalonia.
On May 14th, in Catalunya square, the campaign against the Generalitat’s budgets started with #AturemElsPresupostos a debate on economy and debt. It was the starting point for a longer campaign whose aim is to stop the approval of the 2013 budgets for the Catalan government (#JuntesPodem).
On May 15th, the official anniversary, the police attacked many strategic points.They tried to cut the water supply in a building occupied by the PAH in Salt, Girona (#blocsalt). Can Piella (see NL#29 ,2 ), already aware of a possible eviction, stood strong for over six hours but was finally raided by police (#SOSCanPiella). Their reaction was to have two people abseiling from a building (property of those responsible for the eviction) with huge banners. After the eviction, a spontaneous demo blocked an important highway (AP7). In Sabadell, the Libertarian Ateneu was also raided and searched by the police, with other raids in homes of people associated with the libertarian or anarchist movement. Five people were arrested and accused of terrorism, now still in jail (#Ateneullibertari, #5anarquistasBCN).
Three actions were carried out:
In the morning, the group Reflectantes did an action where, during the #BancaRuta tour along several banks, activists explained people why it’s a good idea to close their bank accounts; 3 accounts were closed and celebrations carried out next to the bank offices (#el15cierratucuenta). An “escrache” (see NL#42, 2) against Boi Ruiz in the afternoon, announced as #BoiDeEscrache, was organized by the health care working group PARS (Platform of afected by public health system cuts, see NL#9, 3 ), while under the call #habitatgepertothom a building with 32 apartments was occupied in the Nou Barris neighbourhood to hand it over to the evicted families. This building has been object of a negociation iwht the Town Hall and, after meeting an agreement, it shall be abandoned with the condition that the District will provide 30 immediate homes for evicted families and eventually another 100 low-rent homes by agreements with banks who have empty buildings.
The month continues very rich in political and civil activism: people are getting stronger and are focusing more clearly on their objective and organizing themselves, many new collectives have been created since the last anniversary. It seems that the change is on its way, even if it is a quite large and dangerous one.
- Call out [EN]
- Storify about the international mobilizations
- Spain’s Indignados movement holds anniversary march [EN]
- Spain’s Demo cronical [SP]
Videos, Pictures and Streamings
- May 11th
- May 12th
- May 13th
- May 15th
- HT #12M15M #11M15M #12Mbcn #Razones12M
- Account @acampadabcn @15Mbcn_int @fotomovimiento
2. MADRID WANTS A PUBLIC HEALTH CARE SYSTEM. ALMOST A MILLION VOTES PROVE IT
Some time ago the demonstrations that filled public spaces were enough for a government to rectify. When the demonstrations were very numerous, governments even resigned.
For years, public health workers have been demonstrating in the streets against the government’s privatization policy. But the government, instead of correcting or giving up their pretentions of privatizing public health, continues to change the laws to goon with their eagerness to privatize public health.
In the week of May 10th to 15th a popular consultation was held outside public hospitals and municipalities of Madrid. The topic of the consultation was to express a preference on the healthcare system’s future: public or private?
The popular referendum’s result yields the following numbers: in six days 935,794 people have voted in 103 municipalities. The question was: Are you in favor of a universal, high quality, public-run healthcare system and against privatization and the laws that allow it?
- 929,903, 99.4%, answered YES
- 3,558, 0.4%, voted NO
- 1,454, 0.2% have voted blank
- 879 null votes, 0.1%
After these results it is clear that the population of Madrid does not agree with the government’s privatization plan for public health. On the other hand, it’s a democratic paradox that not the government, but healthcare workers are the ones who organize this consultation.
A good example of how the citizenship wants to have a voice on political decisions, and people know not only how to participate, but how to organize in a participative democracy. So, what is this Government for?
- Consultation on public health issues [SP]
- Call to participate [SP]
- Interviews on Health Consultation [SP]
- HT #ConsultaSanidad #MesaCS #votosCS
- Account @ConsultaSanidad
3. A “PAPER TIGER” TO BE READ: A COOPERATIVE PUBLISHING HOUSE
The publishing house Tigre de paper (Paper Tiger) is a cultural project, forming part of the cooperative Cultura21 (Culture 21). it is a starting point for developing critical thought, building collective identity and promoting catalan literature.
Tigre de paper belongs to a movement that motivates a critical and collective change and books give both practical and theorical tools for the revolution: the publications (essays, novels and biographies) cover political and social themes, with the idea that “without revolutionary theories there is no revolutionary practice”. They are actually against the “art and culture industry”, which in the publishing field is dominated by few corporations controlling the contents and thus controlling the collective imaginary, manipulating thought in a easy, silent way. They would prefer selling “instant emotions” to producing intellectual, critical work on the social, educational and global situation.
A book club called La Bandada de les lletres (The flock of letters) has been created in order to promote and support the publsher. It’s a reader community actively involved in reviews, discussion and diffusion of the publications, building together what they call a tiger of popular culture. The website’s structure allows to easily disseminate articles and educational materials. The subscription to the club is free.
- Tiger de Paper website
- Twitter account @tigerpaper