What do we want?

casa ocupas (squat) on Calle Meson de Paredes (now painted over and reclaimed)

For those of you who are still unclear what the ‘Indignados’, ‘Campaign for Real Democracy’ and the 15M protesters in Sol were actually protesting about, here is the transcript and translation of part of an email I received recently from a student and protester on the mailing list: 

25 slogans for a revolution. A selection of the slogans, phrases and placards which came up in the protests beginning 15th May, which most caught the attention/captured the imagination of the people.

1. “No somos antisistema, el sistema es anti-nosotros”

We’re not anti-establishment, the establishment is anti-us.

2. “Me sobra mes a final de sueldo”

I have quite a lot of month left over at the end of my salary.

3. “No hay pan para tanto chorizo”

There’s not enough bread to go round for so much chorizo/so many chorizos. (chorizo means ‘sausage’ and ‘thief’)


4. “¿Dónde está la izquierda? al fondo, de la derecha”.

Where’s the Left? At the bottom, on the Right.



5. “Si no nos dejáis soñar, no os dejaremos dormir”.

If you won’t let us dream, then we won’t let you sleep.



6. “Se alquila esclavo económico”

Economic slave for hire


7. “Se puede acampar para ver a Justin Bieber pero no para defender nuestros
derechos”

We can legally camp out to see Justin Beiber but not to defend our rights.


8. “Error 404: Democracia not found”

9. “Error de sistema. Reinicie, por favor”

Sistem error, please re-boot.


10. “Esto no es una cuestión de izquierda contra derechas, es de los de
abajo contra los de arriba”

This is not a question of left versus rights, it’s about those at the bottom against those at the top.



11. “Vivimos en un país donde licenciados están en paro, el presidente de
nuestro gobierno no sabe inglés…y la oposición tampoco”

We live in a country where graduates are on the dole, the president of our government doesn’t even speak English… and neither does the opposition.

12. “Mis sueños no caben en tus urnas”

My dreams don’t fit into your polling boxes.


13. “Políticos: somos vuestros jefes y os estamos haciendo un ERE”

Politicians – we are your bosses and we’re giving you the sack/making you redundant

(The ERE is a Spanish law which allows a company in crisis to seek the authorization to ‘suspend’ or sack employees, when there are ‘vaild’ economic, technical, or organisational reasons.)

14. “Nos mean y dicen que llueve! ”

They piss on us and tell us it’s raining!


15. “No falta el dinero. Sobran ladrones”

There isn’t a shortage of money, there’s an excess of thieves.


16. “¿Qué tal os va por España”?- Pues no nos podemos quejar. O sea, que
bien ¿no?- no, que no nos podemos quejar.”

So, how’s it going in Spain? Oh you know, can’t complain. So, not so bad, then? No, I mean we CAN’T complain.

17. “No es una crisis, es una estafa”

This isn’t a crisis, it’s a rip off

18. “No apagues la televisión… Podrías pensar”

Don’t switch off your television, you might start thinking.


19. “!!Tengo una carrera y como mortadela!!”

(Mortadella is a kind of luncheon meat, which is seen as ‘comida pobre’ (poor man’s food) made with pork, beef, sometimes horsemeat, and additives, probably the cultural equivalent of Spam, or living on McD’s.)

I have a degree and I’m living on Spam/McD’s

20. “Manos arriba, esto es un contrato”

Hands up, this is a contract!


21. “Ni cara A, ni cara B, queremos cambiar de disco”

We don’t want the A-side or the B-side, we want to change records.


22. “Rebeldes sin casa”

Rebels without a house.



23. “Democracia, me gustas porque estás como ausente”

Democracy, I like you because it’s like you’re never here…’


24. “Nosotros buscamos razones, ellos victorias”

We’re looking for answers/reasons, they’re looking for victories.


25. “Cuando los de abajo se mueven, los de arriba se tambalean”

When the ones at the bottom start shaking it, the ones at the top teeter.



 

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2 Responses to “What do we want?”

  1. A lot of great stuff here. Thanks. I’m sort of an armchair refranero so I’ll add many of these to my list.

  2. […] to the streets later that night, we marched holding banners and singing chants of protest. I got to know Madrid for the first time, on foot, and Sara becomes my personal tour guide. […]

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