Spanish state - ys13.en

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The political situation in Spain continues to be impacted by the brutal attacks on the working class as a strategy to overcome the crisis: from cuts to public services (education, health, the legal system, care, public administration, etc.) to the rapid dismantling of collective bargaining agreements supported by the latest employment reforms, to a high unemployment rate currently running above 27%, to over one hundred daily evictions where working class families end up on the street.

Although there has been a mass response to these attacks at certain moments, it continues to be uneven, disjointed, disorganized and moderate. The radicalism, organisation, clear objectives, etc required for a time where achieving even a small victory is especially difficult are lacking. This means that although there continues to be a general sense of discontent amongst a section of the population, and people continue to fight the good fight on the streets, there is also a sense of demoralisation given the lack of any victories.

In this vein, on the one hand the majority of people do not identify with current institutions (traditional parties, large trade unionism, the parliament, etc.) leading to a systemic crisis, whilst on the other, people are seeking refuge in these very institutions faced with the lack of any victories. This goes to explain the exponential growth in electoral support for the Izquierda Unida party (IU - United Left). In reality, those affected by the crisis do not truly identify with IU (especially in Andalusia where the party governs alongside the PSOE (Socialist Party), implementing cutbacks that include 4,500 contract teachers being made redundant..), although they are adopting a defensive posture in supporting the “lesser of two evils”.

Despite all this, the political space is not defunct: people continue to come out onto the streets and the system has failed to recover any legitimacy and seems unlikely to do so in the short term. Even with the low morale, the crisis has led to a vast swathe of society becoming politicised and what was before a very small vanguard is becoming ever stronger.

This is why at Izquierda Anticapitalista (Anti-capitalist Left, a section of the 4th International in Spain founded in 2008 and which currently has 600 militants) we are committed to strengthening and being a part of every struggle. With different realities in different regions, we generally have good representation amongst the student movement and in social movements, although we lack contacts with the employment sector and at a more local level. We are seeking to connect with the entire sector of society that is becoming politicised thanks to the economic crisis, promoting an initiative called Alternativas desde Abajo (Alternatives from Below). Internally we are experiencing growth in our militancy, size, and political and organisational strength.