Demos and Law and Order
LAW AND ORDER
Fernando García Izquierdo
A few days ago, September 25, 2012, there was a demonstration in Madrid which, as often happens in our capitalist society, ended in plain turmoil. Since there are going to be, from now on, many popular actions of this kind, and not only in Spain, I would like to say a few words on the matter.
The demonstration was meant, by its organisers, to be a peaceful protest against some wholly undemocratic decisions already taken by the government and inspired, as everyone knows, by what is usually referred to as “Europe” (Frankfort, Brussels, the City of London and the main “compost heap” of capitalism, which has its “registered office” in North America.) That is to say, the inspiration, better still, the instructions came directly from above, High Finance, of course. The intention (“Europe’s”) was to impose on the Spanish people a new set of restrictions which were to be added to a long chain of restrictions already imposed over the years and which, over the years too, have already caused general poverty and spiritual misery in a nation which during the three or four decades preceding this “Descent into Hell” (or CRISIS) had attained a relatively comfortable status and standard of living. Among other things, the 2013 National Budget was to be rubber-stamped by the legislature that day; and the administration was going to take, at once, measures which would reinforce all the previous laws and decrees that had already caused such pain and mental agony among the masses. Upon the application of these high-finance inspired dispositions, the Spanish people were to sink, let us emphasise this, further and further into a state of utter pauperization and despair. And the state which had led us into such ruin, that is to say, the same set of people who had shown themselves to be incapable of governing in the name of the people, would continue to push us, with power of attorney from that false entity known as “Brussels”, further down the drain.
As expected, our politicians and other leaders of this madhouse which is at present Spain, have already come out (“onto the marketplace”, so to speak) with the big, big lie that the proposed and (they added) unavoidable measures are being taken “for the well being of the people”. The argument was that we are in desperate straits, and unless we let them act the way they do, we shall die. There is not any money left (NO HAY DINERO), was saying a few days ago Mr. Rajoy, head of the government, in Madrid. And because there is no DINERO (which is a further lie) the people must perish, unless we let them act. And here is another big lie: that these are “temporary” measures, and that we must accept these REFORMS; we are still in the best of all possible worlds! “Capitalism, anyhow, is better than communism any day,” they conclude.
But, as any sensible person can see, for the moment, we are sinking, sinking without remedy, and (we should like to add) our “leaders” themselves know perfectly well that there is no future, sycophants as they are!
Nevertheless, they endlessly repeat that there is “a light at the end of the tunnel”, and as they have been promising us the same thing (“la refondation du capitalisme, announced Bouncing Sarko in December 2008) for close to four years, and, every day since, things have deteriorated considerably, nobody now believes them. Yet, they stick to their jobs and to the finance-proposed policies. And the ruin continues and will continue per secula seculorum unless we entirely change the System. But how?
Let us now revert to the S-25 events (“los acontecimientos del 25 de septiembre”.) And let us see how furiously the powers-that-be reacted at the “acontecimientos.” That the people were protesting is a fact. But to say they were not entitled to do so and that in so doing a crime was committed or about to be committed, as has been said by the members of the government and other paid servants of the exploiting classes, is in my opinion a crude manifestation of fascism, as will be seen hereinafter. It is not only a question of shouting accusations. What our politicians and their principals have tried to do (are doing all the time), using brute force as their main and nearly only argument, is to smash at its root the slightest attempt by the people to express their WILL. At bottom they are acting out of fear, the fear of losing their unjustified privileges (POWER) which they possess (and have always possessed) and which has allowed them to accumulate much wealth in their dirty hands. This fear is compounded today by the knowledge that they are living the last days of their indecent dictatorship, the Dictatorship or Diktat of High Finance.
“For if we allow (they think) the Spanish People now to express their will, clearly and roundly, where are we going to end?” That is their great worry, “the domino theory,” which sent them out of their wits since the affair of advancing communism in Korea and Vietnam in the fifties, and ever since. If the Spaniards wake up now, others will follow their example! Capitalism won’t let them wake up. For to have over the years metamorphosed millions of women and men into just a flock of sheep to trample and trample obediently along, head bent to the ground, has been perhaps the greatest achievement of satanic capitalism, at least since 1965. No, they will not give up their prey, so easily. Personally I think they will destroy the entire world rather that lose their unjustified privileges.
Never mind, let us keep to our subject, last September’s events in Madrid. Is a perishing nation (I ask) not to say a word about the national budget and all the dispositions that go with it, even if the matter has already been settled as necessary with no alternative possible by “our betters”, a set of people mainly concerned with finance and the well-being of the banks? And is a rotten parliament (“les élus du people, soit disant”) to be the sole instance acting in this matter, a body in charge of rubber-stamping decisions taken by the scoundrels collectively designed by the generic name of “Europe”?
Let us recall what a great thinker (born exactly three hundred years ago) wrote on the subject of the people’s will, la volonté générale. When several men and women constitute a single body (he said), that is, constitute a nation, “they have only a single will which is concerned with their common preservation and general well-being.” (J.J.Rousseau.) And in the same book, “The Social Contract”, he tells us: “the common good is everywhere clearly apparent, and only good sense is needed to perceive it (…) But when particular interests begin to make themselves felt” and a minority crushes the majority, the general will ceases to be the will of all. And then the measures taken by the governing set “are NOT to be taken without a question.”
“Finally,” Rousseau goes on to say that, “when the State, on the eve of ruin, maintains only a vain, illusory, and formal existence, when in every heart the social bond is broken, and the meanest interest brazenly lays hold of the sacred name of ‘public good,’ the general will becomes mute: all men, guided by secret motives, no more give their views as citizens than if the State had never been, and only iniquitous decrees directed solely to private interest get passed under the name of Laws.”
Thus, nearly three centuries ago. And, what right might Rajoy have, and all the band of financiers and politicians directing him, to impose now on the Spanish people the iniquitous Diktat of the World of Finance, what right to stop the people from peacefully expressing their will (and not simply an opinion, the People’s WILL) on matters so essencial to the preservation and well-being of the Nation as the NATIONAL BUDGET, a bill which is already known to be absurd, drafted by bankers and their agents, a series of unjust, unjustified measures and, in fact quite a malevolent and criminal Diktat?
Now about the actual event, in Madrid, referred to above. The government had raised an army of policemen “antidisturbios” to defend the Cortes (they say) from the demonstrators. They, the police and the army and all the “anti-disturbing” tough elemnts raised by the executive, were mobilised and “en pied de guerre.” They built an unsurmountable double-barrier on every lane and alleyway, street and avenue of the city centre, so that the demonstrators could not by any means approach the “edificio de las Cortes.” They (the so-called representatives of the nation) were to have a very important session in the said Cortes, and they were not to be disturbed (we heard.) The people, nevertheless, marched along. And since I was not there in person I will limit myself to recommend the reader to peruse, as I have, the Spanish newspapers of the day and all the days preceding and following the event.
In any case the photographs in EL PAÍS, if the reader does not understand Spanish, are sufficient in themselves. I shall particularly refer to one of them, in which one can see a young man, fairly handsome and quite young, as far as one can see, who has been beaten to the ground, obviously a victim of extreme violence. The man is dressed in summer-wear, with nothing on his head, and he does not carry a weapon or anything in his hands. Around him there is a body of not less than eleven gigantic robot-like creatures, policemen in dark-blue padded uniforms and strong helmets, men whose very appearance puts fear in your heart and is at once concomitant with violence. Some of these individuals are lifting in the air those fatal long steel bars for which they are known to cause terror even in the bravest heart. One of the monsters has lain his large gloved hand on the fellow’s mouth, as if he wanted to smother him. The rest of the mentioned law-and-order agents were pressing to approach the victim to have a part, no doubt, in the villanous deed. And to think that the official authorities afterwards told us that the evil-doers were afraid “of being attacked by a more than rebellious youth!”
Two other considerations must be added, at this stage, before turning on to another event which took place a few days later. Firstly, the wealthy Spaniards, all those that were at that moment enjoying life one way or another with the riches they have usurped from the Nation, at once came out with the contention that “public order must be maintained, that the rights of the silent majority must be respected, and that all the other Spaniards (besides the demonstrators) have the right not to be disturbed in their tranquil existence by the tumult and turmoil of a demonstration; that public order must be respected at all costs and laws are passed to be obeyed, etc. It is intolerable (they add) that a set of hooligans should intend to disturb the good functioning of parliament, “a House” which should be sacred, in fact the true representative of the Spanish people. Secondly, the politicians and paid sycophants, and other stooges of the Regime, were sure to come out at any moment with the tremendous lie that among the demonstrators there were sure to be violent anarchists and communists (in fact, they will soon call them terrorists, as already happens in Euskady, north of Spain), who want to destroy our democratic (sic) institutions.
Well! the lie that anyone has tried to assault the Cortes these days is evidently fabricated and has exploded in the nose of the satanic forces that want to maintain “the pauper in his poverty and the rich man in the position he has usurped.” And, if we have to accept that disturbances may occur (and often occur) in the course of a demonstration of this kind, this is always, one way or another, the violence of the State, a violence fomented by the very powers-that-be that say they are afraid. Contrary to what they contend, THEY are the violent ones, first with their permanent, institutionalised violence, the violence inherent to our capitalist society. Then, who are the “agents provocateurs” in all the demonstration or nearly all who infiltrate themselves, hooded and armed, among the demonstrators and cause the collapse of the people’s attempt to peacefully manifest their views? Although I cannot vouchsafe the veracity of the assertion that follows (I haven’t been in a demonstration these twenty years), I shall answer the POLICE. Let me relate what I’ve heard about this particular condemnation by the police of the events of S-25. The day following the demonstration, moving about the market town in the province of Valladolid, where I reside several months a year, I never heard from the mouth of anyone any other thing than this: “Ah, those bestial hooded men we saw on television, causing havoc in the demonstration! why, they are from the police! (¡Pero no lo sabes, Fernando, son de la policía!”)
I am not sure about the exact charges against the thirty-five demonstrators taken into custody by the police. During the Dictatorship, any one demonstrating against the regime, was condemned (“a juicio sumarísimo”) by a military court, under the “Ley de Bandidaje y Terrorismo”, and sentenced to hard labour for life or (if a communist) sent before a firing squad. In the present case the judge, Santiago Pedraz, made judgement to the effect that the accused had not committed any crime or fault, and they were liberated at once.
And our politicians at once began a “Danza de la Muerte”, crying murder against the judge. For days and days, we’ve heard the cackling of indecent men and women, as in a choir : “¡Prevaricación! ¡Prevaricación” they cried. “A judge must stick to facts, and not advance any opinion!” This latter sentence because Judge Pedraz had the impudence to decide as follows (EL PAÍS October 5, 2012.)
That the prisoners were to be freed, because they had not committed any crime or fault: they were exercising their legitimate rights as Spanish citizens. It was the police that had acted outside the law.
This accusation threw all our “leaders”, as I have said, into the most violent agitation of anger and spite imaginable That a Spanish judge should have pointed a finger at them was unbelievable, more than that, intolerable. For the judge also referred to the politicians. It has to be added at this stage that Santiago Pedraz is one of the judges of the Audiencia Nacional, one of the high bodies of the judiciary, just below the Tribunal Supremo, highest court in the land.
The brave judge didn’t stop there. The National Budget was to be approved that day, and the people had to have a say in that important matter, of course. If the reader is not Spanish, and lives outside Spain, he or she may not fully appreciate the significance, the tremendous importance for our people of Judge Pedraz’s decision. For the judge went, according to the newspaper (EL PAÍS, October 5, 2012), into a most essential matter which is (in my opinion) the cause of a great deal of the Evil, i.e., the conduct generally of our politicians. But let us go on with the judgement.
Firstly (we read), the government had condemned the demonstration even before it took place, and had denounced it as an attempt to assault the legislature (“una invasion del Congreso”.) Secondly, at the same time, the delegate of the government in Madrid had authorised that very demonstration which the powers-that-be later considered intolerable. And the judge goes on: “y en su transcurso (in the course of the demonstration) NO se cometió ningún delito contra las instituciones del Estado.” In other words, the event took place, and there was nothing in the conduct of the demonstrators which could be called unlawful. The activities of the House (las Cortes) went on normally at all times, and no demonstrator ever tried to assault parliament. On the other hand, in his decision, Judge Pedraz severely criticises the powers-that-be because they unnecessarily caused alarm among honest citizens, stating that an assault on the State was prominent. These are the actual words in Spanish: the judge criticised the government “por su alarmismo e incoherencia al denunciar una conjura (announcing the existence of a plot) para la ocupación de la Cámara.”
But there is still more in the judgement. Judge Pedraz clearly states that “la Unidad de Delincuencia Económica y Financiera” (the economic and financial unit of the police force) had actually engaged in spying on people performing a legitimate operation, and involving (on the part of the police) the following of persons known to be connected with the announcement and organisation of the demonstration. “La gravedad aventurada por la policía no era tal”, i.e. the gravity pronounced by the police was entirely an invention. At no moment did the police tell the truth when they were announcing that parliament was in danger. To boot it all (as we have said above), Judge Pedraz ended by stating that, at any rate, our politicians have over the years discredited themselves and it is not unnatural to see the people rebelling against the system. “La convenida decadencia de la clase política justifica la marcha” and, if only for this reason (the decadence of politicians), the demonstration was justified.
The government and its hirelings immediately pounced upon the noble judge who happened to believe in the independence of the judiciary. All the famous elements of the regime immediately occupied the media and began spitting out the usual venom, proceeding to insult the judge. I thought, hearing them, we were back in the fascist dictatorship of the forties, fifties, sixties and seventies! He had acted unconstitutionally, the judge had (was the cry of the hirelings), a member of the judiciary is not authorised to speak like that! Two or three of these sycophants descended every morning upon the nearest radio station and, taking part in what in Spain is called “un debate” (sometimes “una tertulia”), started, all in unison, to denounce a terrible plot against the government, Judge Pedraz being no less than the leader of the “terrorists.” ÁCRATA, they called him. Who ever had heard in our country of a judge giving an opinion in his judgement, and calling our politicians names?
I now have in my hands a copy of the newspaper. On page 12 I see some of the accused demonstrators. The journalist writes about the incipient war between the state powers, the executive and the judiciary. The title of the article is: EL PP CARGA CONTRA EL JUEZ PEDRAZ POR CRITICAR LA DECADENCIA DE LOS POLÍTICOS.
The PP is the party in power, Rajoy’s. The leader of this right-wing party in Congress had the previous day, before the members of parliament, uttered a tirade during which he called Judge Pedraz terrible names: PIJO, and others, at the same time as he was pressing the executive to proceed at once against such a disraceful “pijo”. This is a terrible attack. “Cargar” against a person of authority who is constitutinally independent from the government! Do they want to charge him for high treason, as Franco would have done?
At the same time the paper shows five of the “incautados”, set free by the judge (who in turned is photographed on page 13.) I can only say, for myself, that seeing these wonderful people, two women and three men, my heart was filled with hope, and I felt like crying with joy. And these are the people the elements in power call pijos and terroristas!