Portugal anti-austerity protests, 15 September

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Mark.
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Sep 29 2012 10:17
Quote:
Portugal Solidarity #29s 
3pm: 3 Portland Place W1B 1HR
In front of the Portuguese consulate in London: Protest against Portuguese government + European troika's totally insane 'austerity measures'.
http://www.facebook.com/events/413351375391276/

http://london.indymedia.org/articles/13025

Mark.
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Oct 3 2012 09:48

PCP video

Reuters report

Paul Mason wrote:

How bond investors now starting to price in social unrest and country fragmentation. At 06.44 on Newsnight. ‪#29S‬ ‪
http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01n3h2d/Newsnight_28_09_2012/

I think this is the week the Portugese protest movement actually changes dynamic. They did what 2 yrs of Greek riots didn't.

Mark.
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Oct 1 2012 23:39

Grândola, Vila Morena

Quote:
"Inside of you oh city it's the people who command. Land of fraternity, On each corner a friend, In each face equality"

http://ja.twitter.com/Igualitarista

Mark.
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Oct 2 2012 10:29

.

Libertarian/anarchist commentary on the protests in Portuguese:

AIT-SP - Lisboa: Basta de apertar o cinto! É hora de cerrar os punhos!

A Ideia Livre: Protesto

Passa Palavra: 15 de Setembro: declarar vitória?

Quote:

...
E agora?

Perante a mobilização de centenas de milhares de pessoas em todo o país, o caminho mais fácil é certamente declarar vitória. De bestas passivas, os portugueses ascenderam, repentinamente, a ativistas bestiais. O uso do essencialismo, por crença ou estratégia, parece-nos, contudo, pouco útil, dado o seu cariz a-histórico e, desde logo, não estratégico.

Uma manifestação que consegue encher as ruas de várias cidades do país, proporcionando momentos de alguma radicalidade, constituirá sempre um dado importante. No entanto, existem problemas estruturais, dificilmente resolúveis num só dia. Em primeiro lugar, conforme as pistas que aqui já foram dadas, a manifestação não deixou de revelar a falta de um horizonte político. Uma grande parte das pancartas e cartazes empunhados por manifestantes continua a ser preenchida por desabafos ou por simples recusas – do «Estou farto…», ao «Basta», passando pelo «Não à…”, as quais assinalam a inexistência de um projeto político mínimo. Sem este, qualquer crítica a apontar a partidos políticos e sindicatos, por mais certeira que seja, corre o risco de assumir uma posição meramente defensiva, facilmente manipulável por populismos e/ou poderes carismáticos. Em segundo lugar, não só a Grândola Vila Morena [hino da Revolução dos Cravos] foi menos cantada do que A Portuguesa [hino nacional], como a bandeira nacional foi, de longe, o símbolo mais visto em toda a manifestação. Deste ponto de vista, o fato das políticas de austeridade resultarem de um processo de ingerência externa, alegadamente dedicado à diminuição da dívida pública, parece ter primazia sobre o cariz internacional do mesmo, com igual tipo de diagnóstico e de intervenção a ser realizado noutros países, como Grécia, Espanha ou Irlanda.

15 de Setembro constituiu, certamente, a prova de que ninguém anda a dormir. Porém, ele próprio indicia o quão longo e tortuoso será o caminho a percorrer.

Mark.
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Oct 5 2012 09:52
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102 years ago today the Portuguese monarchy was toppled and a republic declared. ‪#5deoutubro‬

Commemorations of the 1910 revolution have been moved so political leaders can avoid protesters. That's the spirit...

https://twitter.com/Igualitarista

Report in Portuguese:
http://www.diarioliberdade.org/portugal/institucional/31816-portugal-cer...ónia-do-5-de-outubro-muda-de-local-para-evitar-protestos.html

Mark.
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Oct 13 2012 12:20

Moving the commemorations indoors didn't entirely stop the protests:

Ana Maria Pinto sings 'Firmeza', music by Fernando Lopes Graça to a poem by João José Cochofel. I haven't found a translation as yet.

Sem frases de desânimo,

Nem complicações de alma,

Que o teu corpo agora fale,

Presente e seguro do que vale.

Pedra em que a vida se alicerça,

Argamassa e nervo,

Pega-lhe como um senhor

E nunca como um servo.

Não seja o travor das lágrimas

Capaz de embargar-te a voz;

Que a boca a sorrir não mate

Nos lábios o brado de combate.

Olha que a vida nos acena

Para além da luta.

Canta os sonhos com que esperas,

Que o espelho da vida nos escuta.

.

Edit: A blog post on this in Portuguese - 'Um país ao contrário' - I've failed to find any reports in English.

Edit2: A report from the Global Voices site

Quote:

The official celebrations of October 5 in Portugal, a national holiday that celebrates the establishment of the republic in 1910, was marked this year by a symbolic and rather unfortunate act by President Cavaco Silva, who unintentionally hoisted the country's flag upside-down.

According to military conduct, the meaning of a flag being hoisted upside down is that a territory has been taken over by the enemy[…]

This year it was the last time that the country will celebrate the date as a national holiday - a measure announced earlier in 2012 in order to increase the number of working days. For the first time in 102 years the official celebrations did not take place in the Municipal Square in Lisbon for security reasons, as reported on i newspaper (whose cover on October 6 was also turned upside down), and were displaced instead to a closed space called Pátio da Galé.

Even so, two women in protest have succeeded in shaking the events: one interrupted the end of the President's speech with desperate complaints, and another one recited a resistance song titled Firmeza (Firmness) by Fernando Lopes-Graça...

Mark.
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Oct 7 2012 10:58

Mark.
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Oct 13 2012 23:53

rtp report (video) on today's 'cultural demonstration' in Lisbon - as usual there's nothing on this in English.

Today's song:

Mark.
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Oct 14 2012 00:12

Some libertarian analysis of the protests:

Passa Palavra: A classe trabalhadora vai à rua e encontra os mesmos do costume

machine translation

Mark.
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Oct 15 2012 10:27
Mark.
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Oct 16 2012 11:27

NYT: Austerity protests are rude awakening in Portugal

Quote:

As Pedro Passos Coelho, Portugal’s center-right prime minister, prepares to announce a new budget on Monday — filled with still more steep tax increases and public sector job cuts — he faces the kind of popular backlash that was, until recently, absent from the political and social landscape here.

Taking a page from the playbook of their Spanish neighbors, Portuguese protesters are planning to encircle the Parliament building here in the capital for the budget announcement. For their part, Portugal’s powerful trade unions are preparing a general strike for Nov. 14.
[…]
“It’s clear that the amount of good faith the government enjoyed has been turned into large skepticism and distrust,” said Pedro C. Magalhães, a professor of politics at the University of Lisbon.
[…]
Many here say the government has taken the population’s compliance for granted.

The turning point came in September when Mr. Passos Coelho offered a plan to redistribute social security funds by cutting employers’ social security taxes while significantly raising those of employees. Although the measure was meant to lower labor costs, the outcry from workers was so ferocious that he was soon forced to withdraw it.

But the damage was already done. The misstep is now credited with having rattled the social and political cohesion that had underpinned Portugal’s painful but steady progress.

The withdrawal of the tax plan left the Portuguese, who had once grudgingly accepted the pain of austerity, with a new sense of empowerment, Mr. Magalhães said. “The fact that the government backed down and the fact that no catastrophe or international censure came out of it suddenly shows that there are no inevitabilities”…

David Ferreira wrote:
On Monday, 1000s of Portuguese are expected to surround parliament. Video when this was done by workers in 1975:

Edit: more footage from 1975 here

Mark.
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Oct 15 2012 23:42

It seems to have kicked off in Lisbon tonight - which is unusual for Portugal, though no doubt still quite tame by the standards of countries like Greece and Italy. Coverage on twitter by David Ferreira, also on the spot coverage in Portuguese by journalists Caterina Pereira and Rita Marrafa de Carvalho, with links to photos and video clips - rtp reports (video) from Rita Marrafa de Carvalho here and here.

Videos from earlier in the evening, with protesters surrounding parliament:

Malaquias
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Oct 16 2012 11:02

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lCgiBiSna10

Malaquias
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Oct 16 2012 11:23

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BYK8aGNhrdQ&feature=plcp

Mark.
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Oct 16 2012 11:24

This is worth watching and shows some of yesterday's more dramatic moments, including the police charge towards the end of the night:

Mark.
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Oct 16 2012 12:18

More rtp footage here. Portugal continues to be under-reported. The Telegraph has a report on yesterday's budget, PressTV has a report on the protests, Global Voices has a piece on Saturday's cultural protests, including this video with footage from Porto (music by Dead Combo and Camané):

Mark.
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Oct 17 2012 20:25

Diário Liberdade: slideshow from Monday's protests

Mark.
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Oct 29 2012 11:46

This blog post, republished on the Plan C site, is worth reading on the background to the current protests:

Rhiannon Colvin: Portugal: The beginning of something new

Mark.
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Nov 1 2012 00:17

More protests outside parliament today, against the passing of a budget for 2013 - rtp video. I think the black flags have been adopted as some kind of wider anti-austerity symbol rather than being specifically anarchist - maybe someone from Portugal could explain.

Malaquias
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Nov 1 2012 23:19
Mark. wrote:
I think the black flags have been adopted as some kind of wider anti-austerity symbol rather than being specifically anarchist - maybe someone from Portugal could explain

Black flags have a long tradition in protests in Portugal even in the ones organized by big trade unions. They are used as a sign of mourning. During the dictatorship black flags were used to as a symbol of hunger.

This demonstration had a strong presence of the dock workers who have been on strike to extra work for the last two months against liberalization of work in this sector.

Mark.
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Nov 2 2012 00:04

Malaquias - thanks for the explanation. It was something I'd been wondering about.

Malaquias
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Nov 8 2012 11:19

Demonstration against Angela Merkel's visit to Portugal next 12th November

Mark.
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Nov 8 2012 11:57

The IWA external bulletin has a 'report about the mobilisations against the austerity measures in Portugal' from the Portuguese section of the IWA.

pdf - scroll down to page 11

Mark.
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Nov 8 2012 23:04

Open letter to Angela Merkel

-----

Bloomberg: Dock workers extend strike

Mark.
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Nov 12 2012 12:18

Igualitárista: Angela Merkel’s visit to Portugal should be met with protest, not nationalism

rtp video on security arrangements for the visit here

Mark.
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Nov 12 2012 22:41

Protest against Merkel's visit

Malaquias
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Nov 15 2012 17:48

General strike yesterday:

Massive participation. Many thousands at the demonstrations.

Police charge demonstrators at the Parliament originating riots.

Malaquias
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Nov 28 2012 09:17

New video on the last general strike and the radicalization of anti-austerity struggles in Portugal:

http://vimeo.com/54299520

Mark.
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Apr 15 2013 10:56

El País: April returns to Portugal