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Here we go again!


Must be time for a bailout to these poor banking souls.  Laughing

Spain grossly underestimating bank losses


Round and round it goes, where it stops nobody knows!

Spain protesters rally against austerity measures

Thousands converge in major cities


The Spailout Has ALREADY Failed...Before the Ink has Even Dried

"The market rallied for a couple of hours on news of the $100 billion dollar Spanish bailout (which everyone is calling the Spailout)..and then crashed. This 'Spanic' over the Spanish crisis is occuring even before the bailout deal has been finalized. Nobel economist Joe Stiglitz points out the Ponzi scheme nature of the whole bailout discussion..

'Europe's plan to lend money to Spain to heal some of its banks may not work because the government and the country's lenders will be in effect propping each other up. The the Spanish government bails out Spanish banks and Spanish banks bail out the Spanish government. It's voodoo economics..'



The Bailout of Spain  - by Mike Whitney

"The burden of recapitalizing insolvent banks or loss-making acquisitions of solvent banks will fall on Spanish citizens..They'll pay the price while the crooks walk away scot-free."


Yanis Varoufakis on Europe's 'Dickensian Workhouse' and the Fiscal Waterboarding of Spain (and vid)

"The latest 'Spanish bailout' is really a 100-billion-euro-bailout for Spain's banks that adds to the tab of the already indebted Spanish government. But is this really just a blood wedding between banks and the state that will end in a bloodbath of pain threatening to consume all of Europe in its wake?

Are these really solutions that channel the workhouses of the Victorian era, of a Dickens novel, in their conditions? Greek economist Yanis Varoufakis, has used this to describe the EU's solution to a crisis that has dragged on for almost five years in some countries, and even longer in others. He joins us to give us his take on the latest Spanish 'bailout'..."


Spaniards Angry Over Economic Uncertainty (and vid)

"Activists, members of the 'Indignados' protest movement, have filed a lawsuit against Rodrigo Rato, a man who not long ago was the managing director of the IMF.."

suitably named too..


Obama's kill lists. They have to implement austerity and force a generation of Europeans into unemployment and economic depression in Europe because of Obama's kill lists. Bankers and corrupt politicians have no real power over the 99% except to assassinate and order hits on one another unless they do as instructed by oligarchs.


Farage says it all, and more.


You couldn't make this stuff up. Just how f.....g ridiculous can you get when Italy (probably the next country to go for help) has to give Spain, 20% of the Euro 100bn they are getting, i.e. Euro 20bn.

Worse still, the Italian's have to give it to Spain at 3%, but have to borrow the 20bn at 7% to be able to do so.

I should have been a politician.


Yeah it's not like Canadians have ever had to bailout Canada's big six banks for their losses on foreign oil speculations and bad real estate gambles in the 1980s-90's. We can hold our heads high and walk the talke because Ottawa doesn't do socialism for bankers. Just socialism for profitable oil and gas companies is all. Nobody here but us chickens.


Hundreds Clash with Riot Police in Madrid (and vid)


Spanish Miners (and vid)

"The Asturian miners have embarked on a new 'Marcha Negra', a repeat of a famous action twenty years ago in 1992, when miners marched across the country to Madrid in defiance of job losses and cuts. Last night the miners arrived in Madrid, surrounded by approximately 150,000 supporters, about ten times the size of the reception in 1992. The Spanish media blacked it out.."

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Spanish Firefighters protesting against the cuts in Bilbao. Their message to Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy Brey's right wing agenda of cuts & austerity was 'kiss my arse'. Laughing


Spanish Rallies Turn Violent as Million People Protest in 80 Cities (vid, photos)

"Over a million public employees, trade union members and fed up citizens have taken to the streets in over 80 Spanish cities. A man holds up a sign reading 'Spaniards, Franco is back!' on a street in Madrid during a protest against the Spanish government's latest austerity measures.."


Crisis: An Instrument in Building the Euroempire

"The erosion of the Spanish state.."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Indignados: austerity as a violation of human rights

By drawing attention to the systematic violation of human rights, 15-M has helped to shine a light on the illegitimacy of the financial structure.


Madrid On The Brink (video)

This short film chronicles the events of September 25-29th in Madrid, Spain where tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets to demand the resignation of the government and an end to police brutality. Many of the protests ended in clashes with the police. Since the stand off began on September 25th , the images of police brutality have travelled the world over, shocking and inspiring people across.


The Battle of Burgos  -  by Peter Gelderloos

"...Sometimes it turns out that our weapons aren't so weak after all. Those who took to the streets in Gamonal and other cities achieved a small but important victory. And many of those people share in a growing consciousness that they are part of something that extends across the globe.

An integral part of that consciousness is the desire to spread news of their cause and pass on lessons and experiences that could be useful to similar causes around the world..."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..that was an excellent piece ndpp. txs.

#GamonalEffect Reignites Mass Protest Across Spain

Yesterday, firefighters in Barcelona congregated in Plaça de Catalunya in an impressive show of force carrying signs that read “If Burgos can, We can too”.

Last night in Madrid 13 demonstrators were arrested as thousands took to the streets of the Gran Via.

Demonstrators were quickly bailed out thanks to crowd funding efforts. The #GamonalEffect reminds us of the latent potential of networks created after the #M15 and #TaketheSquare movements in 2011.


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Lessons from the victory against Madrid’s hospital privatisation plan

Victory this week against Madrid’s hospital privatisation – and other recent struggles in Spain – shows popular resistance delivers results, says Esther Vivas

“Resisting is pointless,” we hear endlessly repeated. “So many years of protest but the crisis continues, why bother?” insist others, inoculating us with apathy and resignation. “Protests could lead to something that’s even worse,” whispers the machinery of fear. They want us submissive, heads bowed. Dreams of change are forbidden. However, history rebels, indomitable. And it shows us, despite the naysayers, that struggle is worth it. The victories against the privatisation of the Madrid’s public health system, of the Gamonal neighbourhood standing up to speculators and the corrupt, of the cleaners in their battle for jobs in the capital and the struggle against evictions and the banks, are good examples.

It is not easy to achieve concrete victories when the political class betray our rights and sell out to capital. It’s hard to win when the state apparatus defends the haves, and rolls back our democratic rights and freedoms. The task of change is arduous, when the media are hijacked by private interests. Still, there are victories, big and small, showing us the way.

The Madrid government’s u-turn on its plans to privatise six public hospitals is one of them. The [Popular Party-run] adminstration in the capital has been forced to revoke the “outsourcing” plan after fifteen months of protest and the announcement of the High Court of Justice of Madrid to provisionally suspend the privatization process on the grounds it could pose “serious and irreparable damage.” There have been months of demonstrations, strikes, a referendum with nearly one million votes against such measures, hospital occupations, lawsuits. The triumph swept away its leading promoter, regional health commissioner Javier Fernández- Lasquetty, who has been forced to resign. It’s worth the fight....

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Video: hundreds of thousands march in Madrid

Over 100 people were injured and at least two dozen arrested after clashes broke out following an anti-austerity rally in Madrid last night. Arriving in six columns from all over the country (many of them on foot), hundreds of thousands of protesters converged upon the Spanish capital as part of a nationwide “March of Dignity”. As Spain enters its sixth year of crisis, with unemployment at a shocking 26% and nearly half a million families having been evicted from their homes since 2008, the indignation naturally runs high.

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..lots of pics and video.

Despite Effort’s to Undermine and Discredit 22M Mobilizations in Madrid, the Fight Carries On

After the 22M Dignity Marches ended, the media war began. Conservative newspapers like El País spread the police headcount of 50.000 people (others even less), which was patently ridiculous when you look at the aerial photos of the protest....


Many people came to the assembly the next day (Sunday 23rd) on the square next to the Reina Sofía art museum. The tone was one of mounting frustration with the authorities, who keep strangling any attempts to change politics as usual, even if people play by “their” rules. One person said “We are pacifists but not stupid, we have a right to active self-defense.” As if to prove the protesters right, police was waiting at the entrances to the square, identifying and searching everyone getting in. They even tried to detain one person, which the crowd didn’t allow....

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A new(?) form of protest in Spain: The Iaioflautas

“We are the generation that has fought to achieve a better life for our children. Right now, they are toying with the futures of our children and grandchildren… We stand by them in spirit, at the local assemblies and at all their activities. If they condescendingly call these people “Perroflautas” (hobos) to diminish their audacity, then let them call us “Iaioflautas” (from the spanish yayo, which means grandpa)”.

The Iaioflautas support the young in their fight for democracy and social justice, “against the bankers and their accomplices the politicians”. They combat the rampant speculation, the cut-backs, the privatisation, and the mutualising of the losses, like saving banks with public money. They also support the PAH and all those who have been thrown out of their homes for mortgage debts. They are to be found in 11 cities, 4 of them in Catalonia, and are active on both facebook and twitter.

On October 27, 2011, the Iaioflautas occupied their first bank, Banco Santander in Barcelona.
 This particular bank was picked as a starting point for the day of actions against banks because its director, Mr. Botin, denoted that the banks are the doubtless winners of the economical crisis. This man has a personal fortune of about 1,7 Billion Euro. This was just the beginning of a campaign to occupy banks (i.e. La Caixa in Badalona), through which they still protest against the bankers and the financial oligarchy, who “ruin the lives of 99% of people”....




The crisis we live in today has resulted in the birth of several protest movements to combat the policies of cuts and austerity, marked by the Government, the European Community and the IMF. These policies have been generating social unrest, and movements like 15M have given a voice to thousands of people disappointed with the way the Government has dealt with the crisis.

The collective ’iaioflautas’ is a movement made up of retired people that decided to join the 15 M movement to support the plight of the younger generations. They are between 60 and 90 years old and they lived through the Franco dictatorship era. They have been participants in the restitution of democracy and the establishment of the pillars of the Spanish welfare state. Today, they witness the devastating austerity measures that are in reality disintegrating the structure of the welfare state. Today, they witness how the financial and political crisis that we live in is taking apart the welfare state that was so difficult to build. Their struggle is not directly linked to their interests, it is a struggle they take for their children and grandchildren....

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Pieces of Madrid

This short documentary explores ongoing resistance and self-organization in the midst of the economic and social crisis in Madrid, Spain.

As social conditions continue to deteriorate across the country, people have been turning to the streets and to each other to find for solutions to the crisis. This film tells a story of the massive mobilization that saw millions of people converge on Madrid on March 22nd 2014, the story of the proliferation of social centers, community gardens, self-organized food banks, and the story of large-scale housing occupations by and for families that have been evicted. The film pieces together many of the creative ways that people have been coping with crisis and asks what the future may hold for Spain.

Filmed and edited in March/April 2014, it is part of the Global Uprisings documentary series.

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Spain's 'Robin Hood' swindled banks to help fight capitalism

They call him the Robin Hood of the banks, a man who took out dozens of loans worth almost half a million euros with no intention of ever paying them back. Instead, Enric Duran farmed the money out to projects that created and promoted alternatives to capitalism.

After 14 months in hiding, Duran is unapologetic even though his activities could land him in jail. "I'm proud of this action," he said in an interview by Skype from an undisclosed location. The money, he said, had created opportunities. "It generated a movement that allowed us to push forward with the construction of alternatives. And it allowed us to build a powerful network that groups together these initiatives."

From 2006 to 2008, Duran took out 68 commercial and personal loans from 39 banks in Spain. He farmed the money out to social activists, funding speaking tours against capitalism and TV cameras for a media network. "I saw that on one side, these social movements were building alternatives but that they lacked resources and communication capacities," he said. "Meanwhile, our reliance on perpetual growth was creating a system that created money out of nothing."....


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‘Let’s win back Barcelona’: the rise of Guanyem

When the indignados occupied the public squares of Spain on May 15, 2011, demanding ‘real democracy’, they changed the terms of public debate. They called for an end of elected officials’ excessive privileges, measures to tackle corruption in public life, the dismantling of the stale two-party system, and citizen participation in decision-making. Their decision-making chimed with the popular mood far beyond those who participated in the occupations, and indignados became the pillars of the so-called nueva política (‘new politics’). Post-May 15, the question became whether this protest movement was capable of being an electoral contender, and if so, how?

2014 was the year that the indignados became politically known and popular. Spain is currently spoiled for choice when it comes to radical democratizing movements and political parties, from Partido X, 15MParaRato, Procés Constituent, to Podemos — which is now leading national voting polls, less than a year after its launch. The surge in support for the Catalan independence movement is, in many ways, thanks to its promise to solve the problem of inefficient Spanish democratic institutions by creating a new state.

However, while international attention has focused on Podemos and the Catalan independence movement, they may miss the formation of a new radical municipal platform that could seize power in the May 2015 local elections. The national elections are still a year away and the Catalan process is deadlocked, which makes the possibility of a new radical municipal platform seizing institutional power in the May elections plausible. It would be the first of these movements ever to do so.

A new radical municipalism

Guanyem Barcelona (Catalan for ‘let’s win back Barcelona’) launched in June this year, a citizen platform whose aim is to “take back the city and its public institutions and put democracy back at the service of the people.”

The platform’s likely mayoral candidate is the popular anti-evictions activist, Ada Colau. She became politically prominent after she accused a representative of the Spanish banking association of being a ‘criminal’ during a parliamentary hearing. Her popularity and oratory flair are undoubtedly powerful weapons in the movement’s bid for mass media attention. Nevertheless, the platform also has deep roots in the city’s social and political activists networks. Guanyem Barcelona is a joint initiative of members of Colau’s Platform for People Affected by Mortgages, local neighborhood associations and anti-corruption campaigners, as well as a number of Barcelona-based academics, journalists and artists. It has collected over 30,000 signatures in support and is currently discussing with local political parties, including the Barcelona circle of Podemos, with the aim of standing on a joint ticket at the upcoming elections to the city council....



epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..i am finding what is emerging politically in spain quite fascinating. the speed in which these new parties are moving is astounding. makes me want to learn much more about them. what their policies are. how decisions are made etc....

The Left Can Win

Spain’s newest political party is also its most popular. With roots in the 2011 indignados movement (also called the 15-M movement), Podemos emerged in January with a petition launched by a few dozen intellectuals. In May’s European Parliament elections, just months after its formation, the leftist party captured 8 percent of the vote. It is now the second largest political party in Spain by membership and the largest in the polls. Even the Financial Times admits, “the new party appears to be on course to shatter Spain’s established two-party system.”

At a meeting held early this year in Valladolid, Spain, Podemos General Secretary Pablo Iglesias offered his thoughts on how the Left can win. Below is an excerpt from that talk. The video was uploaded by Joaquín Navarro and the transcript below was prepared for Jacobin by Enrique Diaz-Alvarez.


I know very well that the key to understanding the history of the past five hundred years is the emergence of specific social categories, called “classes.” And I am going to tell you an anecdote. When the 15-M movement first started, at the Puerta del Sol, some students from my department, the department of political science, very political students — they had read Marx, they had read Lenin — they participated for the first time in their lives with normal people.

They despaired: “They don’t understand anything! We tell them, you are a worker, even if you don’t know it!” People would look at them as if they were from another planet. And the students went home very depressed, saying, “They don’t understand anything.”

[I’d reply to them], “Can’t you see that the problem is you? That politics has nothing to do with being right, that politics is about succeeding?” One can have the best analysis, understand the keys to political developments since the sixteenth century, know that historical materialism is the key to understanding social processes. And what are you going to do — scream that to people? “You are workers and you don’t even know it!”...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..more info. very exciting!

Podemos: the political upstart taking Spain by force

In April of 2013, the far-right Spanish television channel Intereconomía invited an unlikely guest to their primetime debate show: a young, Jesus-haired college professor with an unequivocally leftist background named Pablo Iglesias, just like the founder of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party. Their goal was to corner him and hold him up as an example of an antiquated and defeated leftist past. Yet Iglesias responded to their rhetoric in a simultaneously polite but firmly antagonistic tone that appealed to both the younger generations who became politicized through the indignados movement and the older generations who did so during Spain’s transition from dictatorship to constitutional monarchy.

Over the following months, Iglesias and the team of academics and activists behind him were able to use this window of opportunity to catapult the message of the social movements and, most importantly, the people left behind by years of austerity and neoliberalism, into the mainstream media. Shortly after gaining access to the media, they formed the political party Podemos (“We Can”), initiating what polls are showing to be an authentic dispute for control of the Spanish government. How they were able to accomplish this in such a short amount of time will be studied in the political and social sciences for years to come.

Because it is a process that I have followed very closely for a number of years, I have often been asked by independent media-makers, academics and activists about how all of this came to be and what the implications are for movement politics. In this piece, I try to address some of the main questions I get from people who are actively engaged in the struggle for a real democracy...


Recently, Podemos held elections for their Citizens’ Council, which is effectively the party’s leadership. Over 100.000 people participated in those elections through online voting. The team selected by Pablo Iglesias won by an overwhelming majority. It includes an interesting mix of academics, activists and some former politicians. For instance, Juan Carlos Monedero worked as an adviser to Hugo Chávez between 2005 and 2010, and he also advised Gaspar Llamazares of the Spanish United Left party. Íñigo Errejón is a very young and highly promising political scientist who carried out research in Bolivia and Venezuela, though prior to that he was one of the founders of Juventud Sin Futuro (Youth Without a Future), who had a major role in spearheading the indignados movement. Other activists from Juventud Sin Futuro include Rita Maestre and Sarah Bienzobas. Rafa Mayoral and Jaume Asens worked as lawyers for the Plataforma de Afectados por la Hipoteca (PAH), the highly successful civil disobedience movement for decent housing. And Raimundo Viejo and Jorge Moruno are prominent intellectuals associated with the autonomist left.


Tens of thousands rally in Madrid for anti-austerity party Podemos

Tens of thousands rally in Madrid for anti-austerity party Podemos - video Thousands of supporters of the Spanish anti-austerity party Podemos rally in Madrid on Saturday. Podemos. which means 'we can', was only formed a year ago but already holds five seats in the European Parliament, and currently leads the opinion polls ahead of December's election. Its surging popularity and anti-austerity agenda have lead to comparisons with Greek party Syriza, whose distinctive flag could be seen at the rally

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The World Today - NEW HOPE FOR SPAIN

Tariq Ali talks to the writer and Podemos activist, Luke Stobert, about the origins and rise of the new left­wing Spanish party Podemos. They discuss some of the strategies of Podemos to counter the difficult political and social situation Spain finds itself in today.!en/video/the-world-today-3...


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Barcelona en Comú: the city as horizon for radical democracy

With all eyes on Syriza, Podemos and the Troika, the focus of attention among the left these days is the possibility to reclaim democracy at the state — and, inshallah, at the supranational — level. Yet at the same time, somewhat less visibly, there is a new cycle of struggles for democratic governance unfolding at the level of the city.

One such municipal movement and platform is Barcelona en Comú (Catalan for ‘Barcelona in Common’, formerly Guanyem Barcelona). Pioneering new ways and words for approaching the city as common(s), Barcelona en Comú opens possibilities for a politics rooted in everyday experiences, social relations and spaces of reproduction.


Methodology and organization

There’s a lot to tell about the methodology of Barcelona en Comú, as its radical democratic approach comes with a host of tools, techniques, mechanisms and structures for enabling municipal politics from below. Amongst those are various levels of assemblies (neighborhoods, thematic areas, coordination, logistics, media, communication, etc.) and online platforms (for communicating, voting, working). The initiative’s organigram looks more like a washing machine or a particle accelerator than a flat or vertical hierarchy.

That’s quite appropriate, because politics and organization are spun around on a daily basis here, reconsidered and reconfigured in an intense experiment in collective thinking and acting. All of that happens without prescriptions, instructions, funding or lobbies but with lots of heads, hands and feet at work: not your typical ‘smart’ and regulated participatory process.

Starting without a recipe, however, does not mean that the initiative is not inventing its own terms, conditions and practices. The most inspiring example of such innovation is the Guanyem code for Political Ethics, which was discussed, annotated and ratified at an open working weekend in October 2014 — with some 300 people present and many more following and commenting online. This ethics code outlines the platform’s basic compromises as concerning representation, auditing, accountability, financing, transparency, professionalization and corruption, and applies to anyone working within it.

At the level of policy proposals, thematic working groups (health, migration, culture, tourism, work, economy, urbanism, gender, local governance, education, information) have taken on the task of formulating position papers that feature minimum criteria and proposals for each area. These will be negotiated with the other parties (ICV, EuIA, Podem Barcelona, Procés Constituent und Equo) that joined Barcelona En Comú in a common candidature.

Barcelona En Comú is also an experiment in creating, accessing and valorizing common infrastructures and resources. It has very few material resources at its disposal, but it manages to create new forms of access to existing resources, opening doors to council infrastructures with new legitimacy and collective claims, as well as valorizing grassroots and self-run social and political infrastructures. This gives the ‘common’ in its name a very concrete significance....

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A laboratory of social intelligence

Since its inception, Guanyem Barcelona has grasped the role of neighborhoods as protagonists of change. It is clear that Guanyem learned much from movements such as the PAH — the Platform of People Affected by Mortgages, Spain’s strong and popular housing movement which also emerged from Barcelona — that have built their strength through processes of networked proliferation of local groups, each of which is singular in its political leaning, social-affective texture and style. Neighborhood groups are a crucial space for developing analyses and mobilizing the collective strength to enable feedback and contagion effects between local processes and the platform’s thematic groups as well as its coordination committees.

In the winter of 2014-’15, each of the neighborhood groups worked on a diagnostic document concerning their area. These were drawn up in open meetings and analyze problems and propose measures at the local level. In the document from my neighborhood, Poble Sec, the domains addressed were urbanism; health; economy; work, precarity, inequality and poverty; information society; governance and participation; culture; migration; housing; tourism; and education.

Proposals range from the re-appropriation of public space to the opening of health centers and services for old people, to supporting small local businesses and forms of solidarity economy, creating an adult education center and more free WiFi spots, encouraging participatory planning and translation, supporting self-run cultural and social spaces, generating more council housing and changing the areas’ planning permissions, and so on.

These local assemblies are spaces of encounter between people from divergent walks of life, bringing together different levels of expertise and experience — local and technical knowledge being worth the same. They constitute an immense gathering and reshaping of knowledge driven notably by an ever more downwardly mobile middle class. This is both a strength (there is huge potential in the mobilization of these knowledges and social fabrics) and a risk (it will be a challenge to maintain a plurality of subject positions and escape the “tyrannies” of the middle class)....


In municipal elections, Podemos wins Barcelona, may govern Madrid in conjunction with the Socialist Party.

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First we take Barcelona...

This spring, Barcelona has become, once again, the battleground for the radical soul of Europe.

Just under a year ago, a group of activists, members of social movements, and progressive political forces in Barcelona presented our plan to take back our city council for the people at the May 24 local elections. We're Barcelona en Comú, and this Sunday we have a good chance of kicking out Mayor Xavier Trias and winning back the city for the people.

But from the start we've felt that our movement is about more than just Barcelona. Some of the problems we want to tackle are particular to our city, like scandalously high eviction rates and the pernicious effects of uncontrolled mass tourism. But many of our concerns, like rising inequalities and a professional political class tainted by corruption, are shared by people in cities all over Europe and much of the rest of the world.

We're told we live in a democracy, but many of the most important decisions affecting our lives have been taken out of our hands. We're told to leave it to the experts, that we don't know what's best for us. The Spanish government denies the citizens of Catalonia our right to self-determination, the EU holds secret negotiations on the TTIP, and international financial institutions play Russian roulette with our economies.

We can't resign ourselves to this fate.


Taking back a city also means putting decision-making in the hands of ordinary people. This doesn't just mean letting citizens vote on proposals made from above, it also means giving them the power to launch new initiatives themselves. For us, a 'Smart City' is one that harnesses the collective intelligence of the people who live in it. We drew up our election manifesto in an open, participatory way. Over 5000 people took part in its development, resulting in a programme that focuses on guaranteeing basic rights, making the city more liveable, and democratizing public institutions. It's a living document, the start of a conversation with citizens that will continue over the next four years should we win the election...

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Grassroots movements sweep into Barcelona town hall

The outcome of Sunday’s municipal and regional elections in Spain is shaking the country. Two activist women connected to grassroots movements and backed by the leftist party Podemos are likely to become the next mayors of Spain’s biggest cities — Madrid and Barcelona — while the ruling right-wing Popular Party has taken a drubbing in cities and regions across the country. Five years of austerity have finally taken their toll on the establishment’s grip on power, effectively shattering the old way of doing politics....


Five years of austerity have finally taken their toll on the establishment’s grip on power, effectively shattering the old way of doing politics....

One can only hope that leftists in canada are taking note!
What seems to be clear is that to begin developing radical politics in this country, we must urge on the NDP types to take power to demonstrate what a crock of deception they will turn out to be!
So what is urgent is to begin building a grass roots alternative movement now, to be prepared to trash the next government, more than likely not PC nor Liberal, especially as the disaster of business as usual ecocide/globalization politics......

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[url= 'Occupying' A Spanish Bank To City Hall: Barcelona's New Mayor[/url]


Colau is the first of the indignados, or angry ones — Spain's Occupy movement — to win office. She narrowly defeated Barcelona Mayor Xavier Trias in local elections Sunday.

Cheers of "Sí se puede!" — "Yes we can!" — went up through the crowd at Colau's campaign headquarters in Barcelona overnight, when vote tallies showed she had won.

"This is a victory of David over Goliath," Colau told supporters, beaming.

Mr. Magoo

Cheers of "Sí se puede!" — "Yes we can!" — went up through the crowd at Colau's campaign headquarters in Barcelona overnight, when vote tallies showed she had won.

If I'm not mistaken, another politician also used the slogan "Yes we can".


Yes let´s not fool ourselves into thinking even the most radical leftist parties are up to the challenge of systemic will take a strong alternative community and ecology based decentralist and development movement...something which is pathetically missing in Canada...a political movement to challenge the credibility of all the parties must be established but based in community decentralist grass roots development including cultural transformation and economics and finance...this is our work in Canada!

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[url=]Upset victory in Barcelona by social activist weakens independence drive[/url]

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From Occupying Banks to City Hall: Meet Barcelona’s New Mayor Ada Colau

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Podemos-Backed, Anti-Austerity Leftist Becomes Madrid's New Mayor

Manuela Carmena, a 71-year-old retired judge who ran on an anti-austerity, anti-corruption, anti-eviction platform, is set to become the next mayor of Spain's capital, Madrid, after her leftist Ahora Madrid protest party on Thursday agreed to an alliance with the Socialist party.

According to Reuters, "The victory of her left-wing alliance in the national capital is another blow to the [Popular Party] after its rout in municipal and regional elections last month when austerity-weary Spaniards abandoned the party in droves."

Ahora Madrid was born out of the "Indignados (Outraged)" protest movement that erupted during Spain's economic crisis. That crisis, and the policies that came out of it, led to the ascension of the newly-formed Podemos party, which has put a serious dent in the country's governing regime over the last year.

Reuters writes:

Retired from the legal profession since 2010, Carmena had set up a shop selling baby clothes sewn by ex-convicts. She turned down initial approaches from Podemos ("We Can") leader Pablo Iglesias to lead the campaign for Ahora Madrid, then relented in March.

She became the favoured candidate of bohemians and social activists. Artists created a series of posters for her during her campaign, including one of her with a Catwoman mask, a play on the nickname 'cats', given to people from Madrid.

Agence France-Presse reports that Carmena, who will be sworn in on Saturday, "has said that one of her first steps as mayor will be to try to prevent people from becoming homeless by doing away with evictions when possible and providing alternative accommodations when it is not."....

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Barcelona en Comú joins Podemos in Spanish elections

Last week, Barcelona En Comú declared that their radical municipal platform—currently governing Spain’s second largest city—will stand with Podemos in the Spanish general elections on December 20. According to their press release, the motion was passed by the platform’s plenary assembly with 71% of the vote in favor.

The candidacy will be a Catalan coalition aiming to secure its own parliamentary group in the Spanish Congress. The election ticket in Barcelona will be headed up by Xavier Domenech, a well-known historian and one of the leading voices in debates on constitutional processes and historical memory. A figure of consensus among the political forces signing the agreement, Domenech gained a certain level of notoriety in his short time as the city’s Commissioner for Strategic Studies and Historical Memory.


The name of the coalition in Catalonia will be En Comú Podem (“in common we can”). Their program will be based on four points, including the right to Catalan self-determination, the protection of municipal sovereignty and the defense of the citizen municipal movement, an emergency citizen rescue plan to deal with the impacts of the economic crisis and neoliberal austerity, and new mechanisms for change that tackle cross-border challenges such as TTIP and climate change.

The move comes after several months of declining support for Podemos in national polls and the underwhelming results achieved by a coalition between Podemos and the Catalan Greens in September’s regional elections.

Framed by Catalan politicians as a pseudo-referendum on their nation’s independence from Spain, the regional elections resulted in a pro-independence majority in the Catalan parliament and a surge in support for the pro-Spain Ciudadanos party, whose unequivocal centralism clashed with Podemos’s nuanced support for a binding referendum and constitutional change.

Over recent weeks, Podemos have approached radical parties and coalitions in Catalonia, Galicia and Valencia, among other regions, with the goal of building local coalitions in favor of changing Spain’s constitution along five points. These points include reforming Spain’s electoral law, guaranteeing the independence of the judiciary, guaranteeing social rights including decent housing, education and health care, stopping the revolving door mechanisms between political and business elites, and reforming the Senate to guarantee territorial representation.

According to a poll published in El País on Sunday, November 1, since adopting this strategy Podemos have reversed their declining numbers, and support once again appears to be on the upswing.


Spaniards are rallying to third, and fourth, parties ahead of Sunday’s landmark election

After decades of two-party rule, a pair of alternatives is set to make historic gains in a Spain where unemployment rates remain shockingly high despite economic growth.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Beyond the Ballot Box

From the indignados and 15M to housing struggles and municipalismo, Spain has been at the forefront of some of the most creative and effective social movements of recent years. With citizen-led coalitions now governing in Madrid and Barcelona, many see the Spainish context as offering a beacon of hope in an otherwise bleak political climate.

As the country heads to the polls on #20D in one of the most unpredictable elections for many years, the capacity for upstart parties and movements to grow further will be affected by the result. But how exactly is the capacity of Spain’s grassroots politics related to what happens in parliament? And in particular how important is Podemos’s performance in the elections to the future of progressive politics in the country?

In our latest English language episode, filmed in the studios of La Tuerka, the talkshow founded by Pablo Iglesias, we discuss these questions and more with Juan Luis Sánchez (, Carlos Delclos (ROAR), Ana Méndez and Mario Munero (City of Madrid).


Polls close in about 3 hours.


Exit polls: Conservatives to come in first but short of a majority. Podemos to win almost as many seats as the Socialists.


Spain edging towards Socialist-led coalition as negotiations begin

Marathon political talks expected before government can be formed but leftwing parties’ balance of power puts Mariano Rajoy’s future as PM in doubt

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Podemos Decides

This weekend’s Podemos congress will see the party make existential choices about its future.


At the core of this dispute between the Pablistas and Errejonistas is the question of how Podemos, a party that traces its origins back to the indignados movement, should approach its new role as a force in the country’s political institutions. The divisions are particularly pointed on the subject of relations with the center-left Socialist Party (PSOE).

Errejón prioritizes “constructive” engagement in the hope of reaching out to a wider range of voters than their young, urban base. He views the party’s failure to achieve a sorpasso of PSOE in the second elections last June as proof that the idea of Podemos as an “iconoclastic party,” railing against the establishment, has reached its limit.

If the party is to grow, Errejón argues, it has to demonstrate that it can operate as an effective institutional force capable of “governing a different Spain.” As he put it: “the powerful already fear us — this is not the challenge. It is to seduce those who are suffering but don’t trust us.”

In contrast, Iglesias believes that the last year of political deadlock has revealed a Socialist leadership incapable of breaking from the “extreme center.”

Both are in agreement that Podemos should continue to be a “transversal” force, capable of appealing to a wide social spectrum, but Iglesias cautions against this becoming a rationale for Podemos to abandon its opposition to the Spanish regime.

Rather than turning Podemos into “respectable” parliamentary force, Iglesias keeps faith with its original populist hypothesis: that a radical force could come to occupy “the center of the political board,” redefining Spanish politics around a divide between the neoliberal agenda of the elites and the economic welfare of the rest of society.

“A political crisis is a moment for daring,” he said, “it is when a revolutionary is capable of looking people in the eye and telling them, ‘those people are your enemies.’”



Pablo Iglesias has emphatically reasserted his leadership of Podemos, winning re-election as secretary general of the Spanish anti-austerity party with 89% of the vote and easily seeing off a challenge from his more moderate deputy. 

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

Interesting developments. Such a contrast to what is happening in France.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Power in Podemos

Podemos’s second congress reaffirmed Pablo Iglesias’s power. But there were also openings for a more democratic, left party.


Its result has clear consequences: Pablo Iglesias has been reelected general secretary and his team will rule Podemos at ease. For Errejón, former number two and Iglesias’s rival at the congress, any past time was better. The smaller Anticapitalistas current and the list it held with other independent activists, Podemos en Movimiento, managed to show that there is another Podemos, albeit still small compared to the two main factions of the former leadership.


The first Vistalegre certified that the party had never been a common good belonging to its militants, but the property of its leaders. Its bureaucratic and communicative electoral war machine was, at the same time, a private and proprietary party; the bureaucratic privatization of the militant commons birthed a Podemos Inc., and the leaders increased their power at the same time that power became ever more personalized. This process of personalization is intertwined with its institutionalization, which ratifies it.

Around Iglesias and Errejón, a Frankenstein apparatus emerged, autonomous from its own militant base. Its internal logic entailed that any strong disagreements would turn into battles for power in which only two outcomes were possible: perish or win. Survival implied control of the bureaucratic monster.

The Vistalegre II debate revealed Podemos’s hyper-ideologized pragmatism. That is to say, the organization’s conception of politics systematically emptied its real political, intellectual, and strategic concerns. All discussions are reduced to finding a way to win elections, but they nevertheless start from real problems and questions of substance. In one sense, Podemos is a hive of ideas; in another, it banalizes them all.

The whole congressional process reflected this dynamic: the lack of debate culture, the political discussions at the top that did not offer real platforms for the rank and file to discuss, the dynamics of competition, the permanent internal campaigning that resembles nothing more than the North American parties’ primaries, and the extreme personalization of all discussions.