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June 14, 2014
June 14, 2014

Intellectuals from around the world sign a support manifesto for “Podemos”

Author: * Translator: Eleni Nicolaou
Source: Postdigital  Category: On the crisis
This article is also available in: eleshr
Intellectuals from around the world sign a support manifesto for “Podemos”

Personalities of the stature of the American linguist Noam Chomsky, the Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano, the Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek or the Canadian journalist Naomi Klein form the list of 29 names of intellectuals who have issued and signed the manifesto of international support to the new political formation “Podemos”, (We can), that was the big surprise of the last European elections, by gaining, with just four months of existence, five seats in the European Parliament.

The emergence of alternatives such as “Podemos”, “willing to struggle for democracy, social rights and popular sovereignty” is considered by these intellectuals as “hopeful” against “the desolate landscape that austerity policies have designed for southern Europe”.

The text values the mechanisms of “Podemos” as “promoting the political participation of citizens”; such mechanisms are its open primary elections, the popular assemblies and its refusal to be financed through bank loans, in order to maintain its independence from the financial elites and their political interests. They highlight particularly the development, “in a participatory way”, of its political programme, that “breaks” with “the neoliberal logic of austerity and the dictatorship of debt” and “defends social rights.”

The intellectuals attack the Troika, “who is fostering the ground for the return of xenophobia and fascism” and express their hope that this initiative, “of an open and participatory approach”, “an inheritance of the popular mobilisations that, since 2011, have emerged across the planet”, with the 15M movement in Spain, will proliferate “in an unabated form”, across many other parts of Europe and the World.

The complete Manifesto

 “A few days after the last European elections, held on May 25, 2014, we, the signatories of this manifesto, want to celebrate the emergence, in Spain, of the political initiative “Podemos”, which gained, in just a few months of existence, an impressive popular support, by getting 8% of the vote and becoming the third political force in 23 out of the 40 major cities.

 Faced with the bleak landscape that austerity policies created in southern Europe, the emergence of alternatives, ready to struggle for democracy, social rights and popular sovereignty gives birth to hope. Even more, these alternatives aim, at the same time, at a new way of doing politics, above the blackmail that condemns these countries to depend on the policies dictated by the political and financial elites of the European Union.

 “Podemos” has managed to harvest the inheritance of the popular mobilisations that have, since 2011, emerged across the planet to actually claim a democracy worthy of the name. They have done so by fostering the political participation of citizens through open primary elections and by drafting a collaborative programme, through the establishment of circles of support and popular assemblies and, likewise, they do so by refusing to be financed through bank loans, publishing on the internet (podemos.info) their complete accounting and adopting a firm commitment to the revocability of positions and the limitation of mandates, privileges and salaries.

The political program of “Podemos”, developed in a participatory way by thousands of citizens, has been able to materialise the desire, shared by millions of people around the world, for a concrete political project: a break up with the neoliberal logic of austerity and the dictatorship of debt, a fair distribution of work and wealth, the democratisation of all levels of public life, the defense of social rights and public services and the end of corruption and impunity  which have degenerated the European dream of equality, liberty and fraternity  into the nightmare of an unfair, unequal, oligarchic and cynical society. 

 As the recent elections have shown, the disillusionment and  discomfort generated by the policies imposed by the Troika are the best breeding ground for the return and the the rise of xenophobia and fascism. It is urgent, therefore, that the hope infused by “podemos” is expanded to all countries: the resistance of people who refuse to accept their passive submission and claim for themselves the power which, essentially, is theirs alone: democracy, the ability to decide about everything that belongs to everyone.

 So we express our support for this initiative and its open and participatory approach, with the hope that their efforts will bear fruit and spread unabated across many other parts of Europe and the world”.

*Gilbert Achcar
Jorge German
Cinzia Arruzza
Étienne Balibar
Brenna Bhandar
Wendy Brown
Hisham Bustani
Judith Butler
Fathi Chamkhi
Noam Chomsky
Mike Davis
Erri De Luca
Costas Douzinas
Eduardo Galeano
Michael Hardt
Srecko Horvat
Hullot-Kentor Robert
Sadri Khiari
Naomi Klein
Chantal Mouffe
Aristeidis Mpaltas
Yasser Munif
Antonio Negri
Jacques Rancière
Leticia Sabsay
Mixalis Spourdalakis
Nicos Theotocas
Alberto Toscano
Slavoj Žižek

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