The Real Democracy Now movement that has sprung up across
Drawing their inspiration from
A pamphlet distributed by organisers said they "do not represent any political party” and that "we want a new society that prioritises life over economic and political interests. We advocate a change in society and social consciousness. "Fabio Gándara, the spokesman for Democracia Real Ya, a 26-year-old unemployed lawyer who is studying to be a civil servant, said: "What we're denouncing is the lack of real democracy and the tendency toward a two-party system where corruption at all levels is simply scandalous.”
With tents, mattresses, a kitchen, a workshop and even a pharmacy, protesters have refused to budge, defying the decision of regional election officials that they should leave the square. They have also organised their own security teams to keep order in the square. There are at least 57 so-called "Sol campsites" that have popped up across the country in solidarity. Spaniards living abroad have also set up camps outside
They are the victims of a global capitalist recession which has devastated
The fascist regime was replaced by los señores Tweedledum and Tweedledee – aka the Socialist Party (PSOE) and the right-wing People’s Party (PP). Only fewer and fewer Spaniards can tell the difference between them. Both parties are endemically corrupt and have shared the role of integrating
One result is that
That is why Real Democracy Now is saying “Don’t vote for them” – the PSOE and PP – in Sunday’s regional and local elections because neither represents the interests of ordinary people. This is an astonishing indictment of a parliamentary democracy that was only established in 1977 after Franco’s death two years earlier.
This, naturally, poses the question of if not this “democracy”, then what type of political system should replace it? The protests in
For a “real” democracy to work, it must involve the transfer of economic and financial resources into the hands of ordinary working people, alongside the replacing of the capitalist state by forms of popular power. Many took up the fight against Franco’s fascists in the Spanish Civil War in the 1930s with that aim in mind. The revolution was cruelly betrayed by Stalinism and then defeated. Puerta del Sol signals a chance to put history back on course.