16 August 2012

Juan Manuel Sanchez Gordillo

Omdat Sanchez Gordillo en zijn acties met de Andalucische vakbond een gevaar zijn voor het kapitalistische en neoliberale systeem is het niet verwonderlijk dat de commerciële massamedia, die hem nu niet meer kunnen verzwijgen, hem neerzetten als een eigenaardige eenling, en hem vergelijken met Robin Hood, een mytische figuur bekend om zijn stelen van de rijken voor de armen. En zelfs met Asterix, een cartoon-figuur. Maar Sanchez Gordillo bestaat echt, en ik hoop dat zijn acties grote vlucht zullen nemen.
In Nederland moeten we het doen met de tweedehands autoverkoper Emile Roemer die culinaire ijsjes uitdeelt om kiezers te paaien. Dat is 'oppositie' en 'verzet' SP-style. Op kosten van de gemeenschap.

Last week, and not for the first time, Juan Manuel Sánchez Gordillo found himself in the Spanish headlines. Dubbed "Robin Hood" by El Pais, Sánchez Gordillo, the mayor of a small town in rural Andalusia, led farm labourers into supermarkets to expropriate basic living supplies: they filled trolleys with pasta, sugar, chickpeas and milk, left without paying, and distributed the loot to local food banks. His reasoning was blunt: "The crisis has a face and a name. There are many families who can't afford to eat."

It's hard to overstate how close to the brink Spain is at the moment. Unemployment is at 25% nationally (higher than Greece), 34% in Andalusia and 53% for 16-to-24-year-olds; miners in Asturias are firing homemade rocket launchers at riot police; repossessions and the collapse of the construction industry have left 800,000 empty homes, and, last May, the 8 million-strong indignados protest movement, a forerunner of Occupy, announced its total lack of faith in parliamentary democracy to solve any of these problems. And this is just the phoney war: last month, the prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, announced spending cuts of ?65bn (£51bn) over the next two years. (The Gueardian)

Marinaleda's Mayor and IU (Izquierda Unida) Parliamentarian Juan Manuel Sanchez Gordillo (C), 59, shouts slogans next to members of the SAT (Andalusian Union of Workers) as they march between the towns of Jodar and Bedmar, in Jodar, southern Spain, August 16, 2012. The march, led by Gordillo, will continue across the region through blistering summer heat in a bid to persuade other local leaders to refuse compliance with government reforms. The town of Jodar currently has Andalusia's highest unemployment rate. The march will end in Jaen on August 18.

Marinaleda's mayor and Izquierda Unida (IU) Parliamentarian Juan Manuel Sanchez Gordillo speaks into a megaphone during an assembly at the Turquillas land in Osuna southern Spain, late August 9, 2012. Gordillo, along with members of the SAT (Andalusian Union of Workers), are camping at the Turquillas land, which is owned by the Ministry of Defence, to demand that the ministry redistribute the land to local families and farmers. The Spanish Civil Guard evicted the members of SAT from the camp peacefully early on Friday, according to local media. August 9, 2012.


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