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Marinaleda / Life under Socialism (popular)
A small community in the Spanish Andalusia.
On the face of it, a community like any other.
A main street through the town.
And homes with narrow streets.
A big park invites you to linger ...
With silent side ways ...
Arts in the park ...
And a beautifull open air theatre.
As I said, on the face of it, a community like any other.
Were there not so many unusual street names.
Unusual for a community of the Western World.
In addition to names such as CALLE BOABDIL (Mohammad XII.),
which reminds us of the Islamic period,
of course there are street names,
in the way one would expect in Christian Spain,
like Calle San Jose, Calle San Pedro
or Calle Juan XXIII. (Pope John XXIII.).
Very often you can see street names like
Calle Fraternidat (fraternalism), Calle Solidaridad,
Calle Salvador Allende (the first Marxist to become
president of a Latin American country through open elections),
Calle Ernesto Che Quevara or the Calle Leon Felipe
(the Spanish poet, who fought in the Spanish Civil War
for the Spanish Republican Army, and later he lived in Mexico).
Without ever having heard of Marinaleda,
a short walk through the town makes clear,
what is really going on here.
"Paz, Pan y Trabajo" (peace, bread and employment).
"Otro mundo es posible" (Another world is possible).
"CAMINO A LA UTOPIA" (On the road to the utopia).
Marinaleda is on its way to the utopia,
into another world.
The people of the city decided for a different way.
Because in the Ayuntamiento (townhall),
naturally located in the Avenida de la Libertad,
are Left-wing politicians, with a left-wing mayor.
Left-wing politicians, who aren't satisfied with just wearing red ties,
or even stuff their own pockets. No, Left-wing politicians,
who must reach concrete success to secure their re-election.
The Izquierda Unida / UI (United Left),
which got less than 7 percent of the votes 2011
for the Spanish Parliament in Madrid,
they got 73,1 percent of the votes
- in municipal elections 2011 - for the townhall of Marinaleda.
The remaining seats went
to the Partido Socialista Obrero Espanol / PSOE (social democrats).
Conservative Members are nowhere to be found.
The city arms.
UNA UTOPIA HACIA LA PAZ (An utopia on our journey to peace).
Marinaleda counts 2,645 inhabitants (status as of September 2013).
They all have work, deserve the same money.
All citizens have a house, that was created as a community project,
they pay off debts with 15 Euro per month.
And after 70 years it belongs to them.
The community has no debts. There is no police
and the community public meeting, open to all,
decide on the size and use of the tax.
Why does this utopia work,
which failed in so many other places on earth.
Is it all down to the charism of the mayor Juan Manuel Gordillo,
who was always re-elected, since 1979 (the first free elections).
Is it all of the capitalist environment,
a competing system, which is an available alternative,
when the utopia is not working.
Or is there a future for "socialism well done"?
And here you will
find me in the