It’s time to say “Enough”!

María Martha González, August 26

For some time now we have been waiting for something to happen in the country in regards to the new policy that was going to be implemented, or maybe we do not understand and which is already being implemented.

But what is not understandable is that being a majority, as we are, we are being held hostage to a stupid minority whose sole aspiration is to bring down the government and put an end to the changes we propose.

If we talk about the petroleum contracts they say: before, we were getting more, when all of our natural resources had virtually been given away to the transnational corporations and instead of stopping the car at this point, we tried to dialogue with this bribed and corrupt minority; they didn’t understand us. And of course we have to acknowledge that we do make mistakes, and in this instance we can call them mistakes, because they are not mistakes of corruption, shady deals, drug trafficking, etc., etc.

They were and are mistakes arising from a lack of knowledge about how to manage the state and from not having prepared ourselves to take power; we have the government, but we do not have the power.

This great majority still does not hold power in our country; power is still held by those who have always had it and, despite the fact that we are an almost absolute majority, we have to make trade-offs, persuade and sometimes even back-track.

But we still have time, we can with some effort come out ahead and implement what we have proposed and I clarify: our proposals, not want we promised simply in order to win elections. These proposals have been raised time and time again by the majority of Bolivians and at what cost to us. We have paid with our blood and our dead.

No sooner had we proposed to proceed with the constituent assembly, we encountered a thousand and one dodges aimed at averting any progress on our proposal of CHANGE, a change that is necessary for the national majorities that have always been ignored and mistreated. And what happens? The great majority of our constituent assembly members, more or less, have to meet clandestinely in order to get on with its job of changing the country, changing a constitution that was not adapted for all Bolivians but was conceived only in the interests of the dominant classes: those who governed until December 18, 2005 when the MAJORITY, in capital letters, won with 54 percent of the votes. An absolute majority, which left those little scroungers with dropped jaws and a pain they have yet to overcome, spitting worms in all directions. And if it hurts them, let it hurt, they deserve it. It hurts them because it hurts their masters, the ones in the country to the north that they have taken to calling themselves the “guardians of freedom and democracy”. In the constituent assembly they want to impose their proposals on us by minority, they want to remove some of our assembly members; ultimately, what they want is to break up the constituent assembly.

When in the past did they consider the wishes or rights of the majorities who were living in subjugation? We have had to fight centimeter by centimeter for a piece of land, coin by coin for a wage increase. We had to erect blockades to get those big gentlemen, the ones upstairs, to realize that we existed, and at the cost of imprisonment, disappearances and death. And where are all of those comrades now? They are no longer, and will never again be with us.

In the Parliament, what happened when we were only 27 deputies and 8 senators, did they try even one to reach an agreement that would benefit the people? No, the same gentlemen who now so loudly proclaim that they are democrats used the famous steamroller and the extra pay to ensure passage of some law that the governing circles needed at that time in order to get their 15 percent per law or to sell us out a little more to the others, which we either had to accept or die. And now what happens? Did they vote according to conscience and democratically, as they want us to believe all the time? No, what they do is obstruct, block, provoke, simply in order to defeat this popular government, this government of the people.

I am not against talking, discussing, reaching agreements, but without yielding an inch in our own proposal, the genuine proposal of the people, without yielding our principles, which have become reality through hard work, imprisonment and death of so many comrades: the principle of national liberation for the construction of a new society that is included in the proposal of the MAS-IPSP [Movement Towards Socialism – Popular Instrument for the Sovereignty of the Peoples].

This little oligarchy of La Cruz that is ordering the youth of the region to block, strike at and obstruct our work. A useless few who were only useful for making their fortune at the expense of the people who are now in government. This oligarchy which grew, even though it hurts them, through the efforts of the kollas [Indians of the altiplano] that did their work for them and still do. I recall that in a meeting they told us, in connection with a complaint from the eastern communities, that it was fine with them if the people of the west were to work on their lands. Of course, as soon as these humble people who were working for a minimal wage, without any possibility of prospering, began to think that their only opportunity was to have a president from their own class and began to campaign for Evo Morales, the gentlemen thought this was going too far. It is one thing to work for them and another to think for oneself; that could not be allowed.

However, I think that we have been overlooking some things and I think that it is time to say: ENOUGH, ENOUGH ALREADY, to so many scornful attitudes aimed at maintaining the country in total backwardness solely for their own benefit.

The time has come when each one of our slogans must become reality. The job of persuasion that we had to carry out in two consecutive elections was not in vain, and please remember that WE ARE THE PEOPLE AND WE ARE MÁS.

Let us ensure that this MAS goes forward, with its defects and mistakes, because we all have the right to make mistakes and if we do, it is not because we are thinking only of ourselves, but of the whole country, in all of the components of this territory called Bolivia.

Because we have no thirst for revenge, we simply want to improve, to be able to live well; we don’t expect luxuries, first class cars. We simply want to live well, we want Bolivians to come back to our country and be able to find dignified and well-paid jobs, we want our children and our grandchildren to have the same opportunities.

We have been fighting to make Bolivia a better place for our children, some of us for many years, others more recently, but we all think we have to advance our proposals, our ideals. To make Bolivia a great country in which everyone, let’s be clear, gentlemen, ALL of us can live well, ALL of us can eat, ALL of us have the right to healthcare, ALL of us are entitled to work, and ALL of us have rights.

Let us continue, once again, all united; there as well we have much to be criticized for. We don’t all think alike, that’s true, there are internal disputes that should now no longer exist, but those divisions are either paid or are because not everyone participated from the start. There are those who swore allegiance the day after President Morales was sworn in, and there are those latecomers of always and those who camouflage themselves like chameleons and appear more masistas than MAS itself, and the only thing they do is to put obstacles in the path of the process.

Let us repeat our slogans, over and over again, until they become part of our daily action.

WE ARE THE PEOPLE, WE ARE MÁS

Because while we are trying to persuade, to dialogue, to reach agreement, they are arming themselves, and they arm themselves for real. The time has come, comrades and brothers, for us to put an end to the extremisms of this right wing that is unwilling to give up its privileges and that are more dangerous.

We see that ammunition is being acquired on the one hand, and nothing is being done, weapons are being acquired on the other and we are doing nothing. Are we waiting with folded arms to be killed? And this time how long will it take before we can rise up again? Let us all work together, those of us who want change, and let us change. Let us change our country for the good of all because together we are stronger. Those who want to accompany us are welcome, and away with those who camouflage themselves in order to enjoy the proceeds of power. We can’t offer them rafts to Miami, for obvious reasons, but they can purchase their air fares and go. The people have always remained and will always remain in this land, through the good and the bad. Because Bolivia is, and will continue to be, ours.

Translated from MAS Bolivia website

No comments: