Revolution, about which the silent media
Material posted: Publication date: 04-12-2013

Have you heard about what happened on 23 October in Iceland? Probably not. Know why you heard nothing? Because on 23 October, in Iceland there was a revolution is completely peaceful, but no less "revolutionary" than others. At the same time which showed how "dangerous" when "democratic procedures", which are so fond of saying the liberals, controlled by the majority and not the minority, as usual.

That is why the example of Iceland is suppressed by the world media, literally disappears – because the last thing those in power around the world would like – is that the example of Iceland has become a model for other countries. But – all in order.

On October 23 this year in Iceland held a referendum which adopted a new Constitution. This referendum – the final chord in the struggle waged by the people of Iceland since 2008, when Icelanders suddenly found out that as a result of the financial crisis their country is a European Union member, among other things – in the literal sense of the word bankrupt.

Unexpectedly it was because of what happened after 5 years of prosperity, provided the "most effective" neoliberal economy. Based on the fact that in 2003 all the country's banks were privatized, and in order to attract foreign investors, they practiced online banking, which at minimum cost gives a relatively high yield.

Indeed, the Icelandic banks have attracted many small British and Dutch investors, and everything went just fine, and the economy (with the neoliberal point of view) grew, blossomed and smelled. But was, as usual, a caveat: the more attracted investment – the faster growing and external debt of banks. In 2003 Iceland's debt was equal to 200% of GDP, and in 2007 was 900%. The global financial crisis of 2008 became "prosperous" economy of Iceland fatal blow. The three main Icelandic banks: Landbanki, Kapthing and Glitnir –burst and were nationalized, while the kroner lost 85% of its value against the Euro. And at the end of the year Iceland declared bankruptcy.

And here it is time to remember that Iceland is a democratic country. But first, the Icelanders decided to rely on a "normal" representative democracy. A few months after the collapse of the banks, Icelanders took to the streets to protest against the bankers that caused the crisis, and ignorant politicians who allowed its development. Protests and riots, eventually forced the government to resign.

Elections were held in April 2009 and the results came to power, the left coalition, which, on the one hand, immediately condemned the neoliberal economic system, but, on the other hand, immediately surrendered to the requirements of the world Bank and EU to repay the debts of the Icelandic banks a total of three and a half billion euros. This meant that every citizen of Iceland for fifteen years would have to pay monthly 100 euros – to pay off the debts of some individuals (Bank owners) in front of other individuals.

It was too quiet even for Icelanders. And resulted in a quite extraordinary turn of events. The idea that citizens should pay for the mistakes of private financiers, that the whole country should be laid under tribute to pay off private debts, was so unacceptable that spawned a new wave of mass protests. Which literally forced the leaders of Iceland to the side of the majority. As a result, President Olafur Ragnar Grimsson refused to ratify already a law passed by Parliament that would make citizens of Iceland responsible for debts of the Icelandic bankers, and agreed to hold a referendum.

Followed very characteristic of the "free world" reaction "international community" – in Iceland was provided unprecedented pressure. Britain and Holland threatened – in the event of non-payment of debts of Icelandic banks to its citizens – the harsh economic sanctions, up to complete isolation of Iceland. IMF threatened to deprive the country of any of their assistance. The British government threatened to freeze savings and current accounts of Icelanders. But Icelanders did not succumb to the pressure, and the President of Grimmson said: "We were told that if we don't take the international community's conditions, we would become the Cuba of the North. But if we agreed, we would have become the Haiti of the North".

The referendum was held in March 2010 it Icelanders decided not to return the money to foreign creditors – the UK and the Netherlands – 93% of those who responded voted against repayment of the Bank debt. The IMF immediately froze its loan. But Icelanders has not been stopped. With the support of the citizens the government initiated civil and criminal investigations against the persons responsible for the financial crisis. Interpol issued an international warrant for the arrest of the former President of Kaupthing, Sigurdur Einarsson, as the other bankers implicated in the crash fled the country.

But that was not all. Icelanders didn't stop there – it was decided to adopt a new Constitution that would free the country from the power of international Finance and virtual money. The Icelanders wanted to write a new Constitution for yourself all together. And it was a success! The draft of the Basic law wrote 950 ordinary citizens chosen randomly (by lottery system) members of the National Assembly in 2010

To finalize the new Constitution, the people of Iceland elected (already in the elections), the constitutional Council, which included 25 individuals. Simple people – fishermen, farmers, doctors, Housewives – were chosen from among 522 adults not belonging to any political party, each of which recommended that at least 30 citizens.

And, according to Russia's "democratic" journalist Paul Gingerbread in the article entitled "Every cook can write a Constitution": "it should be noted that no one in Iceland was not indignant that you cannot read 522 of a person's biography and their political program, as well as to understand the ballot, which listed the names of so many people."

Then began to finalize the text of the Constitution and constitutional laws. To quote the same P. Pryanikova: "Well, then, the Council used a system of crowdsourcing is the access of all people to their work. The proposals of the citizens were going through "Facebook", "Twitter" and even "YouTube". Just from ordinary Icelanders received 3,600 comments on the work of the Council and 370 amendments to the Constitution. Every week the Council published on the Internet new articles for public discussion. After two or three weeks, after reviewing suggestions from the public and experts, the Council published the final version of articles which were then discussed again. In addition, the members of the Council once a week recorded the story of his work and posted it on "YouTube" and their meetings could be viewed live on the Internet. In the end, all 25 members of the Council voted for the completion of the Basic law. "We, the people of Iceland, wish to create a just society where each of us will have an equal place at the table" – these words begins the Constitution".

In the comments of the members of the constitutional Council recognized that in translation into foreign languages the first sentence of the Constitution sounds a bit sloppy, however, in their opinion, it is clear to every Icelander and best reflects the desire to create equal opportunities for all. Under the draft Constitution, the natural resources of the island are exclusively in public ownership. Of particular interest is the article entitled "public information and truthfulness", which obliges the government to keep open access to all working documents, if they are not a state secret. Also, the Constitution obliges the authorities to work for the benefit not only humans but also the earth and the biosphere. A separate article reinforces the rights of animals.

In innovative document was a place for a very archaic rules, excluded from most European Constitutions. So, Evangelical Lutheran Church of Iceland maintains state status.

It is worth noting one significant for the further development of events nuance. The constitutional Council in its composition was, as is customary now to say, "eurosocialists". And not so much because most Icelanders stick to the left, as a result of quite simply shortsighted and foolish behavior of Icelandic right: former previously in power "Progressive party" and "Independence Party" called on his supporters to boycott the elections of the constitutional Council and the work on the Constitution, and their voters did so. As a result, and in the Council itself, and in the text of the new Constitution the influence of right-wing and conservatives were minimum.

Thus, as a result of the cumulative effects of both objective and subjective factors, most unexpectedly master of the situation – and the constitutional Council, and participants in the drafting of the Constitution, and those voting in the referendum. And the result is so "exceeded expectations" that over the past month the world's leading media eloquently silent on the outcome of the Icelandic national referendum on October 23, on which the draft Constitution approved more than 80% of Icelanders with a turnout of 66%.

Well, you understand? The cost to allow the majority to the development and adoption of the Constitution and constitutional laws, as instead of privatization as a panacea for all ills of the economy "was" nationalization of resources, instead of state secret – openness, instead of strictly representative democracy – the elements of direct democracy.

And God forbid (from the point of view of neo-liberal governments around the world) example of Iceland other countries will follow. After all, today the same solutions, and Iceland 2 years ago, offered to other Nations. The people of Greece have been told that the privatization of their public sector is the only solution. They say the same thing to Italians, Spaniards and Portuguese... what if they follow the example of the Icelanders? It's scary to think...

But this goes! Many of our tourists which are impeded by cultural rest continuously striking "European pigs" (PIGS – a common designation of the four countries of the European Union, on the verge of bankruptcy: Portugal (P), Italy (I) Greece (G) Spain (S)), note that many of the banners for some reason often referred to Iceland. But these trifles news programs also do not mention – the main thing they are interested in is how these "pigs" graciously agreed to take the proposed loan to pay off debts of private banks burst.

That's why you didn't know anything about Icelandic referendum – the world's media pretend that nothing happened. Because the media, like governments and parliaments also represent the interests of the ruling class, which – in any country – Oh how disadvantageous to the majority were allowed to control.

But for all those who are closer to the interests of the majority and who care about real democracy, the Icelandic story is a lesson. The organized majority. Direct democracy. Enjoyment of the rights of the majority. National lawmaking and national governance. All the things without which true democracy is impossible in principle.

Alla Mutelika


Tags: assessment , Europe