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Spanish state

An anti-capitalist and disobedient candidacy

Thursday 3 November 2011

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The November 20th elections will not be any elections. They will take place in the midst of a social and economic crisis that has no end and extends throughout the European Union, placing the Spanish state in the eye of the hurricane. Now more than ever it has become clear that global capitalism is unable to satisfy the basic needs of the majority of the population and threatens the survival of all humanity and the planet due to the serious ecological crisis that it has generated.

From May 15, however, it has become clear that passivity before adjustment measures was coming to an end. A ray of hope has come to the squares and streets of our country. The movement that started on May 15 has managed to combine rage with hope, and has thus given political expression to “another way of doing politics” and symbolic social indignation. The movement of 15 M, and all the networks of resistance and mobilization that can articulate with and around it, is a movement without an owner, self-organizing and representing itself. This is a value that must be maintained above all, because it is essential to its maturation and pluralistic and unified development. The commitment of the organizations of the political left must be not to interfere, not hegemonise, not represent the movement, but participate loyally, provide capacities and proposals, contribute to its strengthening, learn from every day of the actual movement.

Against all attempts to make us pay for the crisis in this system it is necessary to continue strengthening the social struggles, with uniform criteria and seeking convergence. But we think that social resistance is not enough. We also need an anti-capitalist political alternative whose only loyalty is to the social movements, which would never agree to participate in the management of the system and which can listen and learn.

For us what is fundamental to change this system is mobilization in the street and the self-organization of working people and citizens to constitute a real popular power as an alternative to existing run-down institutions. Democracy is much more than a vote every four years. Very much more! The elections are only one field of struggle. We cannot agree that the parties always have a monopoly on the political landscape in the country. They say they speak for everyone but actually they are working for a privileged minority. We should not enter into the game of the system, or play with their rules. We will use the election to raise a voice which is anti-capitalist, environmentalist, feminist, internationalist... that raises the need to change society and life. Anti-capitalism should be part of the political landscape in the day to day and in the elections.

The existing left does not serve to change the world. It has caved in to business interests or is totally adapted to institutional work and absent from the social struggles.

In a situation like the present, with the PP-PSOE agreeing on reforms such as that of the Constitution the legitimate aspiration to the unity of the entire alternative left appears with force. Izquierda Anticapitalista held a discussion with Izquierda Unida and other groups about the possibility of a broad unified candidacy. Our proposal was clear: defend a candidacy of radical change linked to the struggles and an anti-capitalist programme, in the decision not to govern with the PSOE in the institutions, and formed by activists and citizens, not professional politicians.

This was not the approach of IU. It never made a minimally critical assessment of his entry into governments such as those of Catalonia, Asturias, and the Balearics or of emblematic cities such as Seville and Gijon, where IU co-governed with the PSOE until a few months ago applying social liberal policies. Now the numbers do not allow the recurrence of these governments but what if in the future the PSOE recovers? Without a critical balance sheet, history will be repeated. Neither did IU show any real interest in forming a candidacy without professional politicians, defending a list consisting of their leaders, who have been deputies for decades and for whom politics is a profession. Or to run a campaign that was not financed by the banks or where parliamentarians rotated for half of the legislature. In these circumstances, IA came to the conclusion that there was no real willingness by the leadership of IU to turn the left in words or deeds.

We have no doubt that there are valuable and honest people committed to the cause of social transformation in IU. But unfortunately this is not the project of the leadership of this formation, trapped between a critical discourse from the left with the PSOE and a very institutional practice, unable to recognize the negative balance sheet of their experiences of co-management with the PSOE in many municipalities and autonomous regions. The same is true with options such as ICV or Equo, focused only on institutional work. This is not the way.

Because of its firm willingness to participate in and actively support initiatives and social mobilization that in the coming months will undoubtedly intensify, Izquierda Anticapitalista has decided to submit anti-capitalist and disobedient nominations to the next general election on November 20th. We are not going to nominate, however, in the Basque country, where we will realise an alternative “other campaign”. The candidacy will be “Anti-capitalist” because we want to change the world from below. “Disobedient” because we do not accept the rules of a system tailor-made for the financial powers. Ours is a candidacy in construction ready to add various contributions, all of them committed to the radical transformation of society.

We will wage a combative and alternative campaign, with proposals of radical change and respectful of the social struggles and the movement of 15 M, which nobody represents. During these months of campaign we will be as always present in struggles and the movement if, as we all hope, it is able to challenge and jeopardise the electoral process as it did in the last election, while respecting that within it there are very different views on November 20th.

The candidacy presented faces a scandalously undemocratic electoral law. To the usual problems are added the reform adopted in January which forces all parties and coalitions that have no parliamentary representation to collect the signatures of 0.1% of persons entitled to vote in each of the constituencies for which they want to file... within a period of little more than 15 days. Thus, an application that you want to contest 51 constituencies of the Spanish State requires you to collect more than 35,000 signatures. The electoral law aims to make elections increasingly a private club where the right of admission is reserved. They don’t want us there. But we will not make it easy for them.

Izquierda Anticapitalista has begun the process of collecting signatures in order to clearly denounce this undemocratic imposition and submit an application outside of the traditional parties. We look forward to the endorsement of thousands of people with democratic sensibilities that want a candidacy like this to be present in the elections.

To make another world possible, another left is undoubtedly necessary.

Disobey on 20N. Support the anticapitalist@s.