La lucha de los mineros…

…es la lucha de todos los trabajadores – the struggle of the miners is the struggle of all workers. That is at least the way the communist movement in Spainand others framed the so called black march of the spanish miners to Madrid on 11. July 2012.

It was organized to protest  against the cutting of subventions in the mining industry by at least two thirds. As all over Europe the mining industry suffers from deficits as they are not competitive in the world markets and as especially coal is becoming more and more critizised as a source of energy. Thus, this traditionally important sector was alimented by the state – in order to keep energy supply autonomous and to keep the well organized unions calm. But now wat happened for example in Germany in the 1980ies and 90ies – a substantive change of the industrial structures in the mining areas was implemented and subventions were cut by and by- coincides with the energy turn and the financial crisis all t the same time in Spain. This causes severe social problems and thus the miners ar upset and angry. And in fear of losing their jobs. Who could blame them for this? Their March to Madrid led them to Sol, one of the central places near Plaza Mayor in the core of the city. There the central demonstration took place. Ironically enough, while the miners waving red flags, Mickey Mouse and other figures – which are often interpreted as symbols of american neoliberal capitalim – passed Puerta del Sol.

Later in the evening the demonstration escalated into smaller riots with the demonstrators throwing fireworks on the security forces and burning some stuff in the streets. Police immediately cleared the places, for example Callau, immediately using sticks, tear-gas and other means of the central force. Time by times, also democracy shows that its political regime relies on the monopoly of power, as all political regimes do – be they democratic or autocratic. Sitting in a little tapas bar near Callau I witnessed sounds of shooting, police sirenes and people running away and hiding in house entrances. The landlord also was a little upset, so we cleared the tables in front of the ba and went inside. A few hours later, nothing remained of the demonstrations and the city came back to its calmness and southern relaxedness. It was quite embarassing how cool most of the people reacted even though a distrust  aginst the security forces was quite present. Would be interesting to know what the image o the police is and where it origins. Maybe Franco-ism is not this long ago and the image is far away from the german “friend and helper”.

By the way, IPSA 2nd World Conference of Political Science was quite huge, well organized and lots of interesting panels were held.

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