Privatisation of the Revolution
By Oscar Ten Houten at Jun 30, 2011
The revolution is like the tide. It’s rising. But it comes with waves washing up and flowing back. I love this movement, I love the solidarity it has created and the hope for a future that is based on human instead of economic values. But I can’t sing its praise all day. I cannot refrain from criticising things that need to be criticised.
It has been going on for a month and a half now, and with summer coming it seems like many people need a rest. I don’t blame them, I would need a rest myself, but there will be time for that.
Since the acampada has ended we haven’t yet been able to establish the same unity between people, working groups and commissions that we enjoyed at Puerta del Sol. I’ve noticed and I’ve heard that many of the collectives are falling prey to a kind of autism. They are talking a lot about themselves and their internal organisation. They seem to forget they only exist in function of something bigger.
This is probably natural, given the new situation in which we are no longer concentrated in our own little village. But there’s another thing that worries me. Some commissions and some individuals seem to be thinking they are important. They are not. In a revolutionary sense importance can only be applied to actions and results.
The Communications and Audiovisuals committees have both had their troubles in adapting to the new situation. To deal with this, Comunications has officialy been transformed into an umbrella of various subcommittees responsable for press, tv, social media, internal, external etc. Audiovisuals has had its own troubles over the last few weeks and is trying to reorganise.
Things are changing fast. With the marches coming in from every part of Spain, with the rebellion in Greece and other places going on, and with the steady diffusion of the movement all over the world, it’s hard to keep up with everything.
Fortunately there’s no lack of initiative. Yesterday we started with a two day Popular Debate on the State of the Union. The Economy working group has presented its alternatives to the dictate of the EU and the IMF.
The bottom line is that the crisis should be paid for by the ones who created it. Tax havens should be abolished, the ultra rich evaders should be retroactively taxed, banks nationalised, pension ages reduced, minimum wages raised etc. Right wing economists will say it’s not possible. And maybe, given the current system, they are right. But we’re done with the current system. We have our best economists working on this, and they’re going to make it possible.
Audiovisuals has suffered a lot from lack of people and motivation these days. Their livestream team was not present to cover the first day of our State of the Union. But this also showed the strength of our movement, because in the absence of Audiovisuals, the Neighbourhoods commission has spontaneously taken over to cover the event, and the following demonstration out of solidarity with the Greek people.
Waves are washing back, and waves are washing up. The movement is capable of regenerating itself. It must be. The future of the revolution depends on a continuous flow of new ideas, and new people.
I know that many people are eager to join our movement. But I have heard stories of commissions that closed their doors, saying they didn’t need more help. Comrades, this is pure bullshit. We always need more people, and if someone says otherwise, ignore it. You do not need to ask permission to anyone to be a part of the revolution.
If a commission, or a working group or whoever pretends to represent the movement turns into an exclusive club or no longer lives up to our expectations, it should be washed away and replaced by new waves of revolutionary enthusiasm. The movement presents itself as horizontal. If she is, she should be privatised, completely. Whoever wants to join, do so. Set up your own alternative commissions. Exchange information. Share your footage and your films and your photos freely. This is not our revolution, it’s yours.