No Future: the sinking of a country into oblivion

Wake up, rise up

Many of you might evoke riots and clashes with the police if one were to utter the word Argentina, as well as recuperated factories ran by workers, popular assemblies, demonstrations, and alternatives against the banking system and politicians.

That’s nice and well. But what many foreign eyes failed to see in those troubled times ten years ago is that there was an internal war in the political arena, where one the most corrupt local politicians would remain as the ‘saviour’: Eduardo Duhalde —vicepresident during the ‘90s, currently disputing the presidency in the upcoming elections as a member of the opposition—, the last president out of a bunch that took power in 2002 on that infamous week of presidential mayhem, who would give way to the restoration of new elections and some sense of ‘normality’.

Out of that came the kirchnerist model of country that we suffer today; that is, the model started by the late president Néstor Kirchner, and followed by the current administration by Cristina Kirchner.

Nowadays, there is common talk of militancy, of a political youth, active in current political matters, which is indeed a thorough and much needed progress. However, these youths do not bring nothing new to the table; no alternatives or autonomy, or grassroots organization, but rather an attitude supportive of this government. These young minds are being wasted in a ideology of fetishistic dimensions, supporting a political stance long abused by politicians to gain themselves the support of the people: the ‘peronismo’ —named after Juan Domingo Perón, a military general who ruled the country during two periods in Argentina, during the decades of 1940 and 1950. The same ideology that created an incomprehensible ‘revolutionary’ thought based on the actions and policies of this dictator and demagogue [urban guerrillas like the Ejército Revolucionario del Pueblo (ERP), Montoneros, and the like, during the 1970s] —a general who, appealing to the most basic needs of the worker, gained their support, all along bringing down all those other workers who were not aligned to his thinking —killing and persecuting them. All unions not aligned to the peronismo were shut down; doing away with all those struggles, all those victories and all those people who fought for basic workers’ rights for many years —true improvements from the base. This was a man who wielded a rifle in that fatal crackdown of workers in 1919, called Semana Trágica; a man who later participated in a coup d’état, and who, after his second presidency, would seek refuge in Franco’s Spain to escape a coup against his own government by rival military factions.

His ideology paved the way for a ‘juventud peronista’ or ‘peronismo militante’ (peronist youth or militant peronism, respectively) —a monster that roams the university classrooms and which is the thinking that permeates the ‘left’.

How can you fight against ignorance, against opportunism and corruption, against carelessness and utter blindness? How can you tell people to wake up when they seriously believe that we are ‘doing just fine’?

I’m 28 years old, university graduate, unemployed —and unable to find work. Our president, however, claims that unemployment is low and that there is ‘growth’. I’m sure the capitalist speculators and company directors agree with her perfectly well.

How can there be any alternative if there is no place for dissent? The current government appeals to the masses with populist policies, easily gaining their support. And people are content, they have some money to spare: brand-new cars, new tv sets, cellphones, etc… Consumerism at its highest.

And it’s seriously worrying to see how people play along with this dichotomy: either you are for or against this government. Those in the opposition are of the worst kind: right-wing fascists who supported the dictatorship and who apply repressive policies whenever they can, who control a big part of the media through conglomerates — television, newspapers, radio, magazines—, and with the sort of entertainment that people feed off of: sex-driven and sensationalist entertainment that housewives, worn-out workers, and the vast majority of individuals consume at dinner time.

People are brainwashed day and night with a dual dialisis of propaganda, all this to the tune of ignorance, and summed up to precarious jobs, meagre pay, over-work, preposterous shifts. And this is called progress, growth, development.

Have they no shame?

Unfortunately, what’s left of available alternatives also fall into a sort fetishism: that of the past. I don’t mean to judge the few groups of fellow anarchists who try to do things and keep on the struggle, no matter how small and minuscule that may be. But it is not enough, and there seems to be no real alternative to live life but under this government regime of populist propaganda, or in between the line of fire of these two opposing, but no less repressive, political tendencies.

The coming October 23 presidential elections will clearly show how the state machinery works to perfection: the people, once more, are played with and tricked with cheap thrills and ‘little coloured mirrors’ into the ballot-box.

I watch the peoples take to the streets in countless cities abroad, yet here we continue to play the capitalist scheme so very well —the burst of anger long vanquished with demagogy. There is no alternative, no autonomous grassroots movement, away from the clutches of this government.

This is not, however, merely a consequence of the times, nor of sheer political fluctuations: the idiosyncrasy of the people plays a huge part in the continuum of this ‘model’. Argentinians are still worshipping leaders, seeking false ideas of progress and prosperity —the scars of neoliberalism not close yet, and individualism, and the culture of debauchery still reign untouched and unabated.

The truth is that there is no end in sight for corruption, ignorance, and the generalized disinterest in reclaiming one’s own life back.

I would like to highlight some words that I have read by some anarchists who participated in the latest Occupy Portland demonstrations saying: “As anarchists, we seek to expose and destroy the roots of these problems —as long as capitalism and the state exist, there will be greedy corporations and corrupt politicians. Capitalism and the state cannot be reformed into something kinder, gentler, or more humane, it is exploitative by nature”.

I think that here in Argentina we are too deep into this, and too much outnumbered. Despite resistance seeming to be futile at times, it becomes not only a conviction, but state of being. And it’s hard to see how there can be space for breathing when choked with a stalinist-like propaganda apparatus.

I only wish that, as people have learned lessons from the Argentinian revolts and alternatives, people could also learn from the mistakes made and from our current situation.

If the people protesting in Wall Street manage to put an end to the speculative system —and that is a huge gamble—, I think the shock waves will be felt around the world in that regard.

And I seriously hope they reach these shores.

Indigo from Buenos Aires.-

[Photo by the Author. Catania art school, Italy, 2011]

Posted By

Indigo from Bue...
Oct 11 2011 06:23

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feminale
Jun 16 2012 07:21

wow thanks so much for this. i have been travelling and living for extended stays in Buenos Aires since 2003. during this time I have been observing the changes with great interest and filming with the intention of composing a documentary. For several years, I thought I wouldn't finish..that any purpose was lost, anything I wanted to learn, or say.
Now I have returned from two successive annual visits and I will finish. It is time.

You have a wonderfully frank and objective perspective. IT is one I have not found very often the past few years, and find your criticisms also match my own, point by point.
Did you go to UBA?
Please elaborate more. DO you think that the final balloon payments this year will be the end of the stagflation?

Please feel free to email! Thanks!
feminale from Oakland wink