In the wake of the European elections, we want to celebrate the emergence of PODEMOS as a political alternative in Spain. With almost no resources, just 4 months after its foundation, PODEMOS has managed to garner impressive popular support, winning 8% of the vote and becoming the 3rd political force in 23 of the 40 main cities in the country. While the politics of austerity are turning Southern Europe into a desolate landscape, it is encouraging that more and more people are willing to rise up and fight for democracy, their social rights, and popular sovereignty. Even more so, it is deeply inspiring that they are willing to contest the mandates of the financial and political elites through new, radically democratic means.
PODEMOS has managed to build upon the cycle of popular uprisings that have spread worldwide since 2011, demanding a democracy that is worthy of its name. It has done so by empowering the people’s political participation, holding open primary elections, elaborating a participatory political program, and constituting more than 400 circles and popular assemblies worldwide in support of the initiative. PODEMOS relies exclusively on crowdfunding and popular donations, refusing to receive any funding from the financial institutions that are responsible for the crisis, and all its expenses are available online (podemos.info). All its representatives will be revocable, and subject to a strict limitation of their mandates, their privileges and their salaries.
PODEMOS’ political program, elaborated with the contributions of thousands of citizens, makes manifest and expresses a hope shared by millions around the world: to break with the neoliberal logic of austerity and the dictatorship of debt; a fair distribution of wealth and labor among all; the radical democratization of all instances of public life; the defense of public services and social rights; and the end of the impunity and corruption that have turned the European dream of liberty, equality and fraternity into the nightmare of an unjust, cynical and oligarchic society.
This election has shown that the disaffection and malaise created by the policies of the Troika are the breeding ground for fascism and xenophobic forces. It is urgent, therefore, that the message of hope expressed by PODEMOS spreads across all our countries: the resistance of a people who will not succumb to passivity, and reclaims instead a power exclusively of its own, the democratic capacity for all to decide on what is common, on the matters that determine the lives of all.
This is why we express our support of this initiative, of its open and participatory method, hoping that its efforts will materialize and spread throughout many other countries in Europe and the world.