Madrid, Spain : Attack on the structures of the city
March 27, 2019by actforfreedom
In the context of the week of ‘Agitation and propaganda against gentrification and capitalist speculation, and in defence of squats’, two vehicles owned by the firms ‘E-Move’ and ‘Car to Go’ were set on fire in the neighbourhood of Arganzuela and Prosperidad.
We find ourselves in the face of the consolidation of the latest democratic reinvention and of the renewed illusion on the outworn structures of the State and on parliamentary institutions. The irruption of the ‘new politics’ on the political scene has been exploited by the system in order to renew its own structures of domination and to give them a new nourishment of legality, after they had been devastated in the years of the crisis. As the electoral path was gaining strength, street agitation was decreasing. As always.
At the same time we had to face infiltrations and cohabitation in so called ‘social movements’ by politicians and leaders, who exploited all attempts at struggle, amidst various white signs of Podemos intent to share the cake of municipal power. It is becoming more and more normal to see characters such as Errejón [one of the founders of Podemos] taking part in protests against migrants’ detention centres and members of parliament during evictions, as in Via Argumosa, and to see municipal councillors and other kinds of politicians infesting squatted or non-squatted social centres, one meeting or the other…
All this in order to gain electoral advantages and the normalization with which rulers and those who aspire to govern set to co-exist us. The recent electoral list proposed by Íñigo Errejón for his new party (Mas Madrid) for the Community of Madrid, where we find old acquaintances from the anarchist ranks, highlights the necessity to go on the direct and total attack against the infiltration of politics in the struggle, including our own movement. This should be an alarm bell to those who talk about direct action while they allow cohabitation with the institutions and their representative, a path marked by politics and negotiation. There’s no half measure, there’s no possible collaboration with either politicians of all kind or state institutions. The sides of the barricade are clear. To struggle against democracy as an element of integration and formula for the management of conflicts carried out by the State, represents a constant and active task, beyond the scheduled days of ‘mass’ mobilization during (and beyond) election campaigns.
What did the victory of ‘Ahora Madrid’ [a list of candidates including Podemos, ecologists, a part of Izquierda Unida and Ganemos] bring about? Inclusive traffic lights, a string of media procedures camouflaged as progressive environmentalism, more evictions, trials against occupied places, municipal cops who persecute and abuse migrants, more police controls, video-surveillance, celebrations and big events sponsored by big companies, such as ‘Orgullo’ [world pride Madrid], maxi-urban businesses that consecrate the inseparable union between State and capitalism, such as the Chamartín operation, gentrified neighbourhoods made ready for tourists and capitalist speculation, with the consequent expulsion of the inhabitants and living conditions made even more precarious in a system based on exploitation and submission.
And all this is infested by the flourishing of many eco companies, ‘green corridors’, recreation centres totally controlled and under surveillance for the progress of the middle class, such as ‘Matadero’ [a contemporary recreation centre], the ideology of recycling and other state European state eco measures; the goal is that of concealing the fact that cities, as centres of the administration of capital and power, are monsters that devastate people, destroy the earth and the environment, and are unsustainable on all levels for everything that is not capitalist development. There’s no other possible administration of the city, other than social control, speculation and constant change according to the needs of Power. Yet another example of the necessity of a State that regulates capitalism through the Law so as to perpetrate the same logics of domination and destruction of the earth within democratic parameters.
Here technology plays a particular role, once again embellished with a touch of ideology of progress, efficiency and eco management: the smart city as a project of city where information and databases are at the service of companies and the State, at the service of the market and control. To talk about Smart City means to talk about intelligent gas and electricity meters, which can determine for what and in what way electricity is used, cameras in M30 [Madrid circonvallazione] and Lavapiés [a square in the old town of Madrid], and of course all the companies sponsored by the municipality, such as ‘Bicimad’, ‘E-Move’ and ‘Car To Go’: to attack one of its part means to attack the whole logic based on control and consumerism branded as the only ways of life. Capitalism finds its best ally in postmodern social democracy and in Manuela Carmena’s party [Ahora Madrid] and its followers.
This incendiary attack is just a small contribution to the ongoing social war, with a little reflection to clarify that our enemies are State capitalism, its defenders and false critics.