Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Madrid's HiTech Shanty Town 214

Posted by michael
from the hey-buddy-can-you-spare-some-watts? dept.
Alien54 writes: "As reported in CNN, a hi-tech shanty town has arisen in Madrid, Spain, complete with pirated utilities and computer access. Known locally as El Campamento de Esperanza (The Camp of Hope), it is now a village of about 1,200 inhabitants, with libraries, bars, hot showers and cafeterias serving daily meals. They are skilled engineers and technicians, formerly employed by Sintel Telecommunications, a Spanish telecom company that filed for bankruptcy protection in 2000. With a mixture of ingenuity and tenacity, the workers have transformed their claim to $10 million in unpaid wages and refusal to accept forced resignations into a national issue, by squatting on the property where they used to work." Such a thing could never exist in the U.S. for longer than it took to load up the tear gas grenade launchers.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Madrid's HiTech Shanty Town

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward
    fubar says: One can sympathize with the protesters, but they have to understand, that's business, and over here in the US it does happen regularly (people getting laid off without pay) I'm spanish and work near them. They have worked for about six months without been paid. They want to be paid for their work
  • by Anonymous Coward
    > Cops are often small, small human beings.
    > The type that got made fun of in junior high
    > and could never get dates. Give them guns and
    > clubs, and you get the crimes that I listed.

    For someone supposedly trying to point at abuses of prejudice from the police you dish out a very aweful injustice yourself. Do you truely think those you describe could ever grow up wanting to hurt innocent people? Then you have very little grasp of reality. Those in the circumstances you describe often grow up to be very humble and honourable people with a real desire to uncover the exact same issues you are describing.

    What you have said here started off well but you have proved that even wise words can come from an idiot. Think about what you're saying, some of those picked on, were picked on for standing up against the crowd, for being themselves when pressure to conform was highest, for not allowing the other picked on kids to go it alone. For helping the weakest amongst them. Being Heroes if you like. Yes, we hated them at school but look back again, they are the least of our wories in society now. In fact, you are probably still one of their nighmares.

    If I were to try such amatuer psychology I'd guess that the brutal police you describe are made up of those often on the giving end in junior high.

    I think you'll find its a whole mixture of things that leads to that behaviour and the last thing that causes it, is what happened when someone was 14.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    http://www.granma.cu/ingles/ener5/6mafia-i.html
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Well... this one company was government owned till they sold it out to a guy who took the money and ran. so nowe the workers have some complaints about the government's actions. And the reason why they protest andf don't seek a new job is bacause they are owed 6 months wages and they have rights. They have legal rights protecting them from being fired just like that (unlike the US) and that's the demand. I live just across the street where they are camping and I happen to know the story well. My last comment goes to those who try to take a story like this and use it to speak about other societies and show comtempt: You deserve no answer and no attention, loser.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday June 02, 2001 @11:07AM (#181912)
    They are living there since January 29... And that camp is huge! And is the first impression you get when you arrive to Madrid. But things are really hard there, with 34 people died since January, and 7 suicides... :( And one cool message: They have a huge sign at the entrance of the campground saying "Sorry for any inconvenience... We are currently improving the Society!"
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday June 02, 2001 @09:07AM (#181913)
    Sintel was a profitable comp. with big contracts with Telefonica, the ex-monopolistic Spanish telco. The Spanish right wing government sold it very cheap to Mas Canosa, yeah... the miami cuban mafioso, who proceeded to dismantle everything for as much he could get and forgot about the company. So what the workers are asking the geovernment why the fuck did they sold the company to that scumbag....
  • Are these the same "peaceful protestors" who threw molotov cocktails and golf balls at police, smashed hundreds of shop windows, and basically rioted for a few days?
  • Well certainly in that case I'd side with the worker, as a contract has been signed. What I disagree with are the "worker protection" laws which do not involve breaking contracts. If I offer you a job, with no specified time period, and pay you by the month, and then after a certain period of time I no longer need you to work for me anymore, why shouldn't I just be able to fire you at the end of the month? Why should I be forced to continue paying you despite the fact that I no longer wish to employ your services?

    See, such laws will just make me hire fewer people in the first place. If I can easily fire people, I might hire 10 people when I need them, and then fire 5 when half are no longer needed. But with "worker protection" laws, I'll probably just hire 5 or 6 and make them work harder, since I don't want to take the risk of hiring and being stuck with additional people I might not need in the future.
  • Watch the first part of the tape, before that part. Rodney King was very violently resisting arrest, striking the police officers several times in the process.
  • I'm not so sure about that. If I am paying you to do a job for me, and I decide that for some reason I no longer wish to pay you to do that job for me, why should I be forced to continue paying you for a job I no care for you to do?
  • I'm not talking about breaking contracts, but about restrictions many companies put on in addition to contracts. Certainly if I sign a 2-year employment contract with Joe, I should not be able to fire him after 6 months. But if I sign a 3-month contract with him, there should be no problem with me firing him after 3 months.

    Simply put, I don't care about your "protecting people" and whatnot if that involves forcing me to pay people against my will. And you'll see this in many European countries - since they can't fire people, they just don't hire as many people in the first place, or move a lot of their manufacturing to eastern europe.
  • haha, the cops were throwing molotov cocktails at themselves. right.

    and i suppose the groups who claimed to have a goal of "killing every last pig" were really cops too?
  • by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot@@@hackish...org> on Saturday June 02, 2001 @10:14AM (#181920)
    Uhh, you can't protest illegally in the US without being a criminal, as should be pretty self-evident. You can of course still protest legally all you want. Occupying someone else's building is not a legal form of protest, so of course they'd be driven off if this were to happen the US. I'd be pissed if a bunch of "protestors" were camping on my front lawn too.
  • by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot@@@hackish...org> on Saturday June 02, 2001 @10:24AM (#181921)
    Uh, that he did it? Regardless of whether or not he went to jail, he did it, and cops all over America are commiting other crimes as well. I think what got that guy was the media. If it hadn't been reported nation wide, his own police unit probably could have covered it up enough.

    So by your logic, since cops are evil since a few cops commit crimes, black people are very evil, because many black people commit crimes. Yay for collective labelling.
  • by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot@@@hackish...org> on Saturday June 02, 2001 @10:18AM (#181922)
    And many people also don't know that the cops were firing tear gas in response to Molotov cocktails and golf balls being thrown at them. The protestors only stopped throwing them when they RAN OUT of molotov cocktails and golf balls.

    Hell, even the ironically named "Indymedia" admitted this [indymedia.org].
  • "His statement was in reference to the fact that you can't protest in the US anymore without becoming a criminal. "

    Could you ever? McCarthyism (sp?) was a classic example of America not putting it's money where it's preachy mouth is and being the land of the free.
  • "That are my 0.02 Euros"

    What are the fractional parts of a Euro called? E.g. Dollars and cents, pounds and pence, francs and centimes... euros and ????
  • #1. Men rarely report being sodomized. It's like how women hide rape except far more common. I.e. I remember an ex con telling how he was raped on his 1st day in the slamer. During his 5 year stay every single new prisoner got the same treatment. It's a tradition in that facility like hazing. Despite that no prisoner from there has ever reported being sodomized.

    #2. The media reports things they have good evidence for. Hundreds of men report being beaten half to death by cops. Some even manage to obtain convictions. Only Rodney King had a video camera rolling while he was whipped into submission.

    The good thing about the US though is that this sort of thing dose sometimes get pointed and cops have been kicked off the force or imprisoned for violating human rights. That alone makes the incidents less frequent than in Jamaica (my country) where cops kill 140 people each year on average and until Amnesty International made a stink, were almost never prosecuted.
  • by Paulo (3416)
    If you read the article you would also see that these people are also demanding that the government give them jobs. And just what principle does this fall under?

    One of the reasons why their company went bankrupt was because their main customer, Telefonica, refused to paid their company for work that had been done. And guess what? Telefonica was at the time a government owned company.
  • The US has more people in prison, by percentage, then Stalin did in the former USSR.

    The US drug war is pretty damn bad, however Stalin killed a whole whole whole lot more people then we have arrested (so far), let alone killed. Directly at least. If drugs were legal a lot of current drug related and organized crime death would probably be significantly reduced.

  • but if you'll read the blinking article, you'll see that the sqatters aren't "demand[ing] guaranteed jobs from government," they're asking the government to force their former employer to hand over the back pay it owes them, and to punish that US-based employer

    I don't know that they want guaranteed jobs, but they want the old ones back:

    the workers have transformed their claim to $10 million in unpaid wages and refusal to accept forced resignations into a national issue.

    Emphasis added, otherwise a direct quote from the CNN article. I totally agree that they should receive pay for any period they worked, I don't know enough to say anything about getting their job back.

  • Does "pirated utilities" mean illegally copied versions of Norton Utilities, or tapping into electicity/cable/phone lines for free?
  • Telefonica sold the company but there are documents proving that the Telefonica haven't received yet all the money they sold the company for, so the company still can be from Telefonica if they reclaim, also take in care that in Spain you cannot fire people without paying all the pendent wages.
    Also in this there is the government implied since they sold the company as return to the money the Miami mafia put into the election of our actual president, so I think there are enough reasons to make this a civil problem, don't you think?
  • by LynXmaN (4317) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @10:52AM (#181931) Homepage
    OK, nice points from a foreign country, now let me explain this to you.
    I live in Spain ans I work on a internet tech company.
    1- Living here in Spain is as expensive as living in usual places in the US, but far more cheap than living in NY or in SF.
    2- Most of the companies here doesn't permit siesta, that's a wonderful image created in foreign countries by people of the south of Spain, in big cities (like Madrid or Barcelona) people get 1 hour to eat, 2 hours as maximum (depending on the company policy) and in this time you cannot do siesta
    3- This tech people have gone to unemployment and they have offers to go to another companies, but they are in their right to protest because the company that went to bankrupcy is owned by a country company (Telefonica), and they don't want to pay the pendent wages, that's quite miserable from the government and Telefonica (considering that telefonica is miserable per se).
    4- Get off your image of Spain, come here and try to do some work, you'll get amused.
    That are my 0.02 Euros =P
  • Golden Gate Bridge? Surely the Bay Bridge?

    [FX: searches for "gibson squatters bridge"]

    Seems like he put them on the Golden Gate Bridge in one book and the Bay Bridge in another. I don't think there were squatters on both in either book. Weird.

  • While the AC is clearly either naive or a troll (his "If he hadn't run, he wouldn't have gotten shot" logic is hilarious), ad hominem attacks aren't much better. I thought far more of your post before I got to the end.

    Taking a guess that the poster is probably white isn't an ad-hominem attack, unless it's recently become somehow bad to be white in America that I didn't know about.

    Thinking of the readership of slashdot, with the SES factors of income it takes to be interested in technology, have internet access, and percentages on the internet, I think it's fairly safe to guess (although I have no way of knowing that I'm right/wrong) that the poster was white. The reason I was pointing that out is that its very common for whites in the suburbs who have never seen inner city cops to act as apologists for cops because they never see the things people are so angry about when it comes to the cops.

    That's what I was trying to sum up when I said that. And I don't think it's an ad hominem attack. If I tell you "you are a white man", do you think that it's an insult or an attack on your character?

  • For someone supposedly trying to point at abuses of prejudice from the police you dish out a very aweful injustice yourself.

    Tell me, do you think they're equivalent? I may be unfairly representing cops, that's just my admittedly heated opinion about them from the kids in my highschool that I've seen go on to become cops.

    Do you truely think those you describe could ever grow up wanting to hurt innocent people? Then you have very little grasp of reality. Those in the circumstances you describe often grow up to be very humble and honourable people with a real desire to uncover the exact same issues you are describing.

    Certainly there are good people who were like that earlier in life. What I'm trying to say though is that the occupation of police officer may attract good people who want to make the world a better place, but it probably also attracts people who want to have authority and power over others. Cops make split second decisions on whether people live or die, and we both know that there are people out there that this really appeals to. Those are just the people that shouldn't be cops. IMHO, those are the types of people that end up committing these crimes against the people they patrol.

    What you have said here started off well but you have proved that even wise words can come from an idiot. Think about what you're saying, some of those picked on, were picked on for standing up against the crowd, for being themselves when pressure to conform was highest, for not allowing the other picked on kids to go it alone. For helping the weakest amongst them. Being Heroes if you like. Yes, we hated them at school but look back again, they are the least of our wories in society now. In fact, you are probably still one of their nighmares.

    Why is it that of the entire post you pick out this one small portion of my personal opinion to attack? Did it hit a raw nerve of some sort? I was like this on highschool too, but I didn't end up becoming a cop. I wasn't one of the people who picked on those kids, so I doubt I'm still in their nightmares, but I'm not sure why you feel the need to attack me as an "idiot" for expressing personal opinion.

  • Such a thing could never exist in the U.S. for longer than it took to load up the tear gas grenade launchers.

    Yeah...not many people know that the Quebec protesters stopped getting tear gassed only when the cops RAN OUT of tear gas.

    The cops in the US (and surrounding US events, like the meeting in quebec) certainly aren't as shy as the cops in other parts of the world. I mean, they do shoot unarmed black men who are running away. They do sodomize suspects in bathrooms with broken broom handles. They do shoot guys something like 40 times for pulling wallets in a dark alley. And they do beat the bejeezus out of motorists who aren't offering any resistance.

  • So by your logic, since cops are evil since a few cops commit crimes, black people are very evil, because many black people commit crimes. Yay for collective labelling.

    Are you intentionally missing the point? It's not crime in general I'm talking about, that was your "collective labelling". What I'm talking about is crime committed by cops which is specifically a violation of public trust and a misuse of their authority. Not everybody can even commit the same crimes as cops can, because they supposedly have the public trust, and they definately have power in the form of nightsticks and handguns.

    It's a time-honored absurd form of arguing to extend the argument to something that clearly isn't included in the discussion and then attack the false conclusion instead of the original point.

  • by Uruk (4907) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @08:41AM (#181937)
    Blaming the US for the Quebec police is stretching things.

    Ever hear about the Quebec or Candian police doing anything like that when the US isn't involved? The meeting may have taken place in Quebec, but it was about North American free trade. The main proponent of which is the US, who also tends to deal with its citizens like that when they protest.

    Of course you always have a few bad incidents, and with a watchdog media that needs to fill the insatiable news demand of america, any incident gets blown out of proportion.

    Exactly how do you blow out of proportion a dude getting sodomized with a broken broom handle while in custody? Nobody needs to sensationalize that, that's just plain torture. Also, while you talk about the crimes cops commit in a very blase way as "a few bad incidents" I have to wonder how many times this sort of thing happens and it's never reported. You probably prefer the american cops to other countries because here in america they don't use nazi tactics, keep people's rights away from them and torture them. Oh but wait...they do.

  • by Uruk (4907) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @08:51AM (#181938)
    1) unarmed black (or white) men shouldn't run away, at night when an arrest warrant is being served. If he hadn't run, he wouldn't have gotten shot.

    Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't see the logic that running away from a cop deserves the death penalty. It's all so clear now.

    2) The guy who sodomized the poor guy with a broken broom handle is now serving a lengthy stretch in a state prison, so what is your point?

    Uh, that he did it? Regardless of whether or not he went to jail, he did it, and cops all over America are commiting other crimes as well. I think what got that guy was the media. If it hadn't been reported nation wide, his own police unit probably could have covered it up enough. That's another thing that makes me sick about cops. Their loyalty to one another forces them to lie for one another even when they know that one of their members is in the wrong.

    Cops are people, and people break laws, what is important is that they are punished when they do.

    But only when they get caught, which isn't very often. And even when they do get caught, it's a citizens word against a cop's. Who is the judge listening to?

    4) Last I heard, the guys that beat down Rodney King are doing a stretch in a federal prison.

    Whether or not cops are in prison has nothing to do with what I'm talking about, which is that they are often extremely brutal motherfuckers that are often willing to do some pretty nasty things to people. Cops are often small, small human beings. The type that got made fun of in junior high and could never get dates. Give them guns and clubs, and you get the crimes that I listed. Just because somebody went to jail for them doesn't mean they're any less horrible or any less likely to occur in the future.

    But then again, you're probably a middle class whiteboy who doesn't have to worry about these types of things, since you're never a target. What do you care?

  • I'd very much like to read a second source of this story, some organization other than CNN. Why? Read this story [nationalreview.com]. Then read this overview of Jorge Mas Canosa [canfnet.org], who founded MasTech which bought Sintel, and remember this line from the CNN story: "Next to his shack hung a poster of Che Guevara, the symbol of Marxist insurgency and early ally of Cuban leader Fidel Castro." CNN's nickname "Castro News Network" is well earned.

    For this particular story, I'd prefer a source that isn't biased as hell in favor of leftist slavemasters and against the man who fought their favorite one.

    More on Cuban persecution: here [nationalreview.com] and here [nationalreview.com].
  • ARGH! I belatedly noticed the "AP" attribution...

    Well, the links are still relevant, just not as much. The first and last two are still must-reads.
  • by alumshubby (5517) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @08:49AM (#181941)
    Now I know why I like Neal Stephenson, Bruce Sterling, and William Gibson so much: This story reminds me so strongly of various plots and settings from their works. Highly cooperative high-tech squatter camps? Now if they just moved to the Golden Gate Bridge, or just outside of a high-tech research facility in Lousiana, or a bunch of floating junks orbiting a privately-owned surplus aircraft carrier, I'd really come down with acute deja vu.Cyberpunk is fun to visit, but sometimes I'm not too sure I'll want to live there.
  • How many times have you walked by a building with two people picketing and not paid attention to why they were picketing? It seems as though many people don't care about an issue until it effects them.

    Y'know, there's a perfectly oily little Ford auto dealership near where I live, and for several weeks last year, a number of people were picketing it, apparently on strike or some such. Ordinarily, as the previous poster says, I would ignore it and carry on with my own business, but I was suddenly seized with curiosity, and stopped to talk to one of them.

    "You guys have been here for some time," I said.
    "Yeah, it's been a while," he replied.
    "So what's the issue here?" I asked. "Why are you picketing?"
    "We're not allowed to say."
    "...Beg pardon?" I asked, incredulous.
    "We're not allowed to say. We'll get in trouble if we do."

    After probing further, I managed to "read between the lines" and discovered the dealership in question had hired non-union workers. But the idea that the pickets were prohibited from discussing their grievance struck me as Just Plain Odd. I didn't inquire as to where this edict had come from.

    The world does not appear to be operating within rational parameters. Where's the reset button?

    Schwab

  • What's up with the last snide comment about "the time it takes to load up the tear gas grenades". Have you ever heard of the bonus army (1920s era WWI vets)? Strikes? Unions? People protest getting laid off all the time here in the states.

    don't make such B.S. claims about the freedom of assembly and such. just be glad you aren't living in China, Cuba, Iran, etc, etc.

    --sam
    --sam
  • Nice layman's explanation, Michael!

    --
  • by FFFish (7567) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @09:02AM (#181945) Homepage
    Siesta isn't lazy hours, it's sanity. Your body's natural rhythm is to slow down at around 2PM.

    And just *imagine* how much nicer your life would be if you could knock off for a little nap in the midafternoon. Hell, give it a try for a month -- I'll bet you'd *never* want to go back.

    One of the problems with the American headspace is that "live to work" is the meme, instead of "work to live."


    --
  • Since the whole thing resulted from government intervention it kinda makes sense to demand government intervention is setting it right.

    Having no government intervention at all would be even better, but it's a long way from A to B.

    -
  • And you miss the point. Anyone who thinks the US sucks is free to leave. The moron poster he is replying to clearly thinks that cops in the US are animals on the warpath, while cops overseas are sweet and kind. I bet he has no experience with cops in most parts of the world. Maybe he should take a trip and see what they're like.

    As for what he is doing to stop police brutality in America, he is posting to Slashdot. Gee, how effective. When I see him doing something besides posting absurd deductions from specific cases to generalizations (one of the most common logic flaws, but an annoying one in a place frequented by logicians), I'll take him seriously.

    But for all of his passion about police brutality on Slashdot, his home page is dedicated to GNU projects and world overpopulation. Funny, that. If he thinks the world is overpopulated, he should find the nearest cliff and jump off of it. Or maybe he should attack one of those evil American cops, since apparently they're just mad killers.

    -jon

  • Exactly how do you blow out of proportion a dude getting sodomized with a broken broom handle while in custody?

    By generalizing from one to many. You know, the police officers who did that were men! All men just can't wait to sodomize other men with broom handles! Or so your logic goes.

    -jon

  • by TWR (16835)
    Um, working without getting paid is being a slave. Spain does have welfare for the unemployed, no? Better to be unemployed on welfare than a slave.

    If my company didn't pay me for two pay periods, I'd leave and not come back. Even if I couldn't find a tech job, I'd leave. Flipping burgers in McDonalds pays better than nothing. Staying around for SIX FREAKING MONTHS hoping to get paid is insane.

    -jon

  • First of all, what does locking people up for using drugs have to do with anarchy? Isn't that the opposite of anarchy?

    Secondly, by "cults" you are probably referring to Churches. Can you provide a citation for your quote? Can you show support for this citation's opinion from some 20's ministers organization?

    -jon

  • "The moron poster..."

    Yay! More ad hominem. =)

    I maintain that he is a moron. His arguments are logically invalid. One of the premises of his screed against cops in the US is the behavior of cops in Canada. That's a moron, in my book.

    Now, compare this to his claim that all US cops are bloodthirsty sociopaths. I wish he'd give his name and address, so cops can know who NOT to protect when he needs them.

    "As for what he is doing to stop police brutality in America, he is posting to Slashdot. Gee, how effective. "

    You'll excuse me if I point out the irony of this statement. =)

    The difference is that I don't think police brutality is a serious problem in the US. Are there brutal cops? Sure. Is there something institutionally rotten about cops? Nope. I maintain that, by and large, cops are decent human beings who put their lives on the line for complete strangers.

    -jon

  • Cops in other parts of the world just pull out their assault rifles and shoot unarmed citizens point-blank in the face. Indonesia, Isreal, China, Serbia.. This crap happens all over the world, at least in America nobody dies. Of course, the people in other countries are often rioting about things that affect them, such as freedom and other things which most Americans take for granted (and often hide behind.) If you think being tear gassed for protesting globalization of trade is bad, go to North Korea or China where you can (and likely will be) shot in the head on the spot for muttering anti-government sentiments. Put things in perspective and suddenly they don't seem so bad.
  • Hmm, you just mentioned the word: PROPORTION.
    That's just what's missing in the US system: proportion.
    How in the hell (!) can a cop or any one else use death as a proportional reaction to some infringement of property....

    This is the bad variety of capitalism!

  • Umm .....

    The footage I saw showed a man lying down hardly moving, except for the occasional attempts to stand up. During all of this a beating was raining down on him. When you are having the sh*t kicked out of you, self-preservation kicks in. It is human instinct. Any attempt to "resist" arrest by that point was as a direct result of the "arresting" methods.

    There has to be a cut-off point. Rodney King may have resisted arrest, but by the time the police had finished with him he was long past the point where he was resisting to a point that they could not cuff him. The fact is they overdid it, badly. IMHO (and somehow I think the opinion of the law as well) if they are resisting then the police can use forceful tactics UNTIL they can arrest him, not play with him like a cat plays with a mouse until they get bored.
  • complete with pirated utilities and computer access.

    I wonder how the people whose utilities and bandwidth are getting stolen feel about this.

    Such a thing could never exist in the U.S. for longer than it took to load up the tear gas grenade launchers.

    It is truly amazing how people are ignorant of history. Mass non-violent action is quite common in US History going back hundreds of years.
  • Get with reality, huh?

    Let me see - one armed rebellion occurring BEFORE the the founding of the country wipes out 200+ years of pretty much peaceful change.

    NOT.

  • > You can of course still protest legally all you want.

    This is, of course, bunk. Read up on the DC protests earlier this year. Take a look at all the restrictions to protesting on public grounds and then *you* tell me if people are still trurly free to protest in America's capital.

  • Happens here every day. They're called startups. Nex
  • I dunno about that. I consider drive-by's and gang warfare to be right on par with "serial killers/rapists".

    Crime happens. White/black/yellow/red. Get over it.
  • Police are there to detain lawbreakers so that judges and juries can determine punishment. When a man resists arrest, the police then must use physical force.

    Get this through your fucking skull: Never fucking argue with a motherfucker who has a badge and a gun and a nightstick and has the AUTHORITY to break any of those on your fucking head and you'll be alot better off.

  • They weren't? Have *you* ever been in a situation like that? I have. It's scary as shit, you don't know if that person has a weapon, or anything. Besides, if you WATCH THE WHOLE TAPE, the police didn't start beating him until after they hit him 3 TIMES with a taser. THREE! And King refused to go down. (ever notice that the other occupants of the car didn't get beaten when they COMPLIED with the officers? They got out and got down and were left alone). After you hit a man with tasers and he STILL won't go down, you realize that you've got a real fucking whack job on your hands. I say they should've just shot the bastard, but hey, that's why I'm not a cop.
  • Considering I'm also a non-white male, your "sig" means relatively nothing. :P

    They didn't "Beat" Rodney king senseless. he was already senseless and refused to acknowledge anything that resembles authority. What would you have done in their situation? He should be happy they didn't just shoot his ass. After 3 tasers, you bet I would. Then again,, that's probably why I'm not a cop.
  • The meeting may have taken place in Quebec, but it was about North American free trade. The main proponent of which is the US, who also tends to deal with its citizens like that when they protest.

    It was about free trade for all of North and South America and Canada is a big proponent of that, too. About 40% of Canada's economy is based on international trade, which is the highest figure of any nation in the world. The amount of trade between Canada and the US dwarfs the trade between any two other nations.
  • by Tofuhead (40727) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @03:30PM (#181964)

    IIRC, in Max Headroom, it was mandatory for citizens to own a television, and it was illegal to own a television that had a power switch to flick off. These Spanish protesters are there voluntarily, and only have their comforts out of ingenuity.

    < tofuhead >
    --

  • Uhh, you can speak legally in Oceania without being a criminal, as should be pretty self-evident. You can of course still speak logally all you want. Criticising big brother is not a loegal form of speach, so of course they'd be take to room 101 if this were to happen in Oceania. I'd be pissed if a bunch of "protesters" criticised me too.
  • "Alchohol prohbition ... was a direct result of giving the women the right to vote."

    Hahahahahaha! Learn some history, dude.

    Prohibition: Amendment 18.
    http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/data/constitution/ am endment18/

    Women's sufferage: Amendment 19.
    http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/data/constitution/ am endment19/
  • by British (51765) <british1500@gmail.com> on Saturday June 02, 2001 @08:16AM (#181967) Homepage Journal
    This sounds like something out of Max Headroom, where even homeless people had TVs lying around.
  • They're engineers! They probably have invented better gas guns than the budget-cut cops. ;-)

    ERTW
    ------

  • Nah, Che was a communist, and slash is an EXTREMELY right-wing place. Also, it's full of idiots. Che would be at k5!
  • by BlueCalx- (59283) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @05:55PM (#181970) Homepage
    Hear hear. I go to a college with a slightly insane curriculum [northwestern.edu], and my classes get out by 2 PM every day. At 2:30, I sleep until about 5ish. This is a Very Good Thing(TM), because I usually only get four hours of sleep a night due to various forms of insane work for whatever reason.

    Between the hours of about 2 and 6, I cannot function while awake. It simply does not happen. I like these brief stops in my work in the afternoon, because my dorm is really quiet and, quite honestly, it's the only time I can rest (I live in the party dorm this year, and though it's pure insanity most of the time, people go out to class and work in the afternoon while I sleep).

    It's complex, but it works, and it works amazingly well. I rue the time when I will have to get a job in the working world, not because of what I'll be doing (I love my work, don't get me wrong), but because I will have to change my sleeping schedule so drastically that it will be some horrible form of physical torture for me.

    No, I'm not kidding. I'm that weird. :)
  • by joq (63625) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @08:22AM (#181972) Homepage Journal

    "The days are very long and you have to keep yourself busy," said Jose Maria Casado, who used to install cellular antennas.


    One can sympathize with the protesters, but they have to understand, that's business, and over here in the US it does happen regularly (people getting laid off without pay) and shamelessly by many in the technology industry [see FuckedCompany [fuckedcompany.com]] however most people here simply move on to other jobs.

    Are things that bad in Spain where they have to protest in such fashion because there are no jobs or something? Personally I would get another job and move on with life. Perhaps after I got another job I would use my own money to take them to court in an appropriate fashion as opposed to sitting around waiting for someone to listen.

    Yes I know protesting for a cause is semi politically correct, but being without work isn't going to pay my bills, and I'll be damned if I forcefully made myself live in a camp town when I could do as I said, make money then take them to court. They're lucky Spain doesn't have FEMA [fema.gov] over there or that shit'd be over quickly
  • by selectspec (74651) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @10:24AM (#181974)
    Actually it has everything to do with what he was saying, because he's missing the point entirely. This Madrid shanty town has nothing to do with protest rights and has everything to do with fundemental flaws in the Spanish Economy, which despite its hurculean efforts towards reform still has some problems. His jest at the US is completely ludicrous, and it is symbolic of the liberal rant that dominates this site.
  • You seem to leave out all the statistics about molestation that come from drug infested families. The kids who were molested usually grow up to molest their own children. The kids who grew up in these pee-pee stained heck holes often commit violent crimes when they get older as well.

    The Chinese saw the evils of drugs (remember the Boxer Rebellion?) and faught the British who were forcing opium on them.

    I felt the drug war is an excellent example of why the western world is not free, or based in liberty

    We have freedom (albeit not much since we're being disarmed) but I don't have the right to go and rape. I might feel great for a moment as my thighs quiver while I penetrate that really hot cheerleader but it hurts society more than it helps me.

    Just because you don't like churches doesn't mean everything they've done is evil. You don't have to toss the baby out with the bathwater. That kind of logic is popular with Demopublicans. Show some logic instead of sophistry.

  • Unfortunate, but true. Well, more power to the world. It will be nice if there ever comes a time when no significant distinction can be made between one country's freedoms and the next country's freedoms.
  • by jidar (83795) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @09:35AM (#181980)
    All of which doesn't have a god damned thing to do with what he was saying. Since your reading comprehension appears to be straight out of... well, a US public school, let me help you. His statement was in reference to the fact that you can't protest in the US anymore without becoming a criminal.



  • I'm sorry to hear about your troubles with law enforcement in the U.S.

    Might I offer a suggestion to improve the situation?

    Many people I know have much better relations with police officers once they remove those bumper stickers that say:

    Bad cop! No donut!
  • by Bill Daras (102772) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @08:10AM (#181991) Homepage
    .....you realize a bunch of squatters living under blue tarps in a self-created techno-ghetto probably have faster Internet access than you
  • by hexx (108181)
    Your sig reads: It's GUYana, not GHana. Ahem. You can't wish an entire country out of existence.

    Perhaps, on the odd chance that this person CAN indeed wish an entire country out of existence, you shouldn't be correcting him.

    Kinda like Kids In The Hall and the "Little God Spot".
  • [blockquote]Funny that in the American Form of Capitalism that even other working class people will defend the "right" of the elite class to screw their own. It is frightening that people in this country are brainwashed to the point that they think that Corporations should be free to do ANYTHING including ripping off their workers for their pay and we are just supposed to accept it. You can be DAMN sure that the execs of that company left with big fat "golden parachutes". [/blockquote] This attitude is a recent abomination brought about by the rise of Generation-X. Generation-X typically favors the corporate "might is right" mindset. This will be the only generation in the post industrial revolution history of man that will be known for saying that a corporation is free to not pay wages for work already done. The only generation in post industrial revolution history to delude itself into believing that the solution to a dangerous or sweat shop style workplace is to seek work elsewhere. Most Gen-X'ers will not make it anyways. That was made plainly clear when their dotcom empire fell apart. They will learn the hard way that human rights are more important than corporate rights, when the working conditions go from bad to worse. They will find their paychecks not getting given to them, their paychecks bouncing, and they will find they aren't being hired because someone pirated their genetic information and used this pirated data to decide they are genetically unfit for a job. The jobs these losers will get, will require they work an extra 20 hours a week WITHOUT PAY. Free labor. And who will be there to save them? No one. They won't even be able to hop over to the NEXT job because that employer will smell blood in this market and subject them to the same conditions - if they'll hire them in the first place. Generation-X'ers and their dotcoms were themselves notorious for sexual harassment and exclusion of women. Consider the typical Gen-X'er's view towards the corporate state. A woman sues her employer over a genuine case of "You're gonna get fired if you don't suck my ----". In the Gen-X mentality she should have quit her job, gone job hunting elsewhere because of the deluded Gen-X myth that there is "always another job", and let the next woman fall into this creep's gunsights. They think the company will be punished by karma. WTF!?? I have two words for these morons: Larry Ellisson. Wealth beats karma, folks. And in the end, if no woman presses a lawsuit, ALL the jobs will be like this because horny loser male managers will not have any deterrence from sexually harassing their women employees. So it will be that if you are a woman, you must have sex with your boss to stay employed. And if a woman sues, guess what - she's got a huge legal bill to contend with. The corporation has billion dollar attorneys to fight her in court, and they can also PAY THE JUDGE OFF. Anyone who looks at the FTC decision regarding Amazon.com, knows there is no possible way the FTC could have found Amazon to be not guilty of fraud. What happened was, Amazon paid the FTC off. And that is what will happen to this poor woman in a sexual harassment lawsuit. Hopelessly outgunned by the facts, the corporation will simply buy a favorable judgement. And then as a slap in her face they might even counter sue for libel/slander. AND... they will also blacklist her. Good luck finding another job. Women as corporate chattel. Welcome to Centauri Prime, Susan Ivanova (that's a Babylon 5 reference). THIS would have been the fate of womankind if Generation-X's mighty dotcoms had managed to survive. Companies will laugh in their face as they sign service contracts with these apathetic Gen-X'ers, set a price for goods delivered in stone for the length of that contract, and then raise that price right in the middle of the contract. Take DSL. Whatcha gonna do? Not pay? Great. You lose your service. And no one else exists in your area to give you service. You can't sue the company for breach of contract because you can't afford the attorney and they won't take it on retainer. So the corporation will just breach your contract, piss in the face of contract law, and you will sit down and LIKE it. Or else you will be without service. Permanently. Even if you cam afford and win the case, the ISP can then cut you off and you still have no service. Whatcha gonna do......SUE 'em again? And to be extra nasty that ISP will make your case public and your employer will see this and realize you're not a ball player and fire you for no reason. Right to work, baby. WHOOPS!!!! All of this is already happening!! These cowardly lapdogs that make up Generation-X will pay dearly for its cavalier, apathetic ways, as the corporations strip away from them every single human right that their parents once enjoyed.
    ========================
    63,000 bugs in the code, 63,000 bugs,
    ya get 1 whacked with a service pack,
  • by Col_Panic (120757) <mark.demma@net> on Saturday June 02, 2001 @11:39AM (#181995) Homepage
    Funny that in the American Form of Capitalism that even other working class people will defend the "right" of the elite class to screw their own. It is frightening that people in this country are brainwashed to the point that they think that Corporations should be free to do ANYTHING including ripping off their workers for their pay and we are just supposed to accept it. You can be DAMN sure that the execs of that company left with big fat "golden parachutes".

    It is high time we got over the "if it's good for GM, it's good for America" propaganda bullshit and realise that corporations need to be held accountable for the damage and destruction they have on people's lives. Corporations think that destroying the lives of thousands who loose their jobs to make a buck (Pan Am) is commonplace, but they also think nothing of mass murder (Union Carbide in India) supporting dictators (United Fruit and many others in Central and South America) and slave labor (Various Oil companies in Burma).

    The attitude of "anything to make money is OK" needs to stop. If that were REALLY true, GM would sell crack, which is pound for pound more profitable than a truck. The law can and should stop corporations from hurting people, whether it be selling crack or leaving people jobless and destitute because they stole the money due to the workers.

    We say that this is a country formed by the people, for the people but act as if it is just for the rich and elite. The time has come to start thinking like we, the people, count more than the corporate Power Elite and look to these people as examples.

  • Hi,

    I know it seems odd for we to take the discussion from squaters->anarchy->drug war, but the way I responded relates to the way I perceived what I thought was an abuse of the word "anarchy". Bear with me for a second.

    Specifically, the squaters may be viewed as anarchists, but IMHO, only if the western world is true to the concepts of liberty and freedom...I felt the drug war is an excellent example of why the western world is not free, or based in liberty...we are taught that we live in freedom and liberty, but, like the squaters who had their paychecks stolen, this may well be an illusion.

    Your requests for further notes on the puritanism and temperence of early America, and its influence on alcohol and drug laws, can be found below:

    http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/media/pw2.ht m
    http://serendipity.magnet.ch/wod.html

    There are also more stats on the prison figures, that other posters have requested.

    BTW, I learned a lot of this from my Dad, who is 80 years old. He remembers how the mobsters fought and killed people for their alcohol turf. He despises the "Drug War" and urges all to review the stats, and free our non-violent American citizens for treatment, as I do.

    It's too bad so many older people who remember the errors of the past are not given more of a voice. The drug issues is a billion dollar enterprise from a number of points of view...law enforcement, incarceration, masses of money ($100 or more for a tiny bindle of powder which costs approximately $0.25 to produce!) lost productivity due to incarceration of non-violent, treatable citizens, the violence of the illegal market.

    Thanks for the reply,
    S.D.




    Treatment, not tyranny. End the drug war and free our American POWs.
  • You accuse me of sophistry when you have made the logical error of linking child molestion and drug use?

    There is no scientific evidence to support such a link. This assertion is as crazy as saying "being a christian leads to child molestations" -- certainly, you have seen the various instances of molestations by church officials in the news over the years.

    Or perhaps the Ministry have had their sins washed away by the blood of the lamb of God? Yet you won't free non-violent Amercians from prison for treatment? (BTW, child molestation is a violent crime--I don't suggest child molesters should be freed!)

    The boxer rebellion? Lost productivity in Britain? I don't advocate the use of drugs, I advocate treatment of drug users rather than incarceration in what is obviously a failed, corrupt venture that burns billions of dollars and kills many people -- due to the freaky women at:

    www.actu.org

    ...who want to take away just about anything that would take your mind away from the Lord Jesus.

    PS: I've read the scholars' translation of the Quelle...and think Jesus was magnificent. I also think the western pervesion of of writings is a pathetic sheep-leading joke.

    Good Day!


    Treatment, not tyranny. End the drug war and free our American POWs.
  • www.wctu.org

    (sorry)

    taking away your personal freedoms for 127 years and counting.


    Treatment, not tyranny. End the drug war and free our American POWs.
  • Finally, the ultimate link:

    http://www.tfy.drugsense.org/Beck1.html


    Treatment, not tyranny. End the drug war and free our American POWs.
  • by small_dick (127697) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @10:19AM (#182001)
    Anarchy?

    The US has a drug war.

    The US has more people in prison, by percentage, then Stalin did in the former USSR.

    The prohibition laws against drugs and alcohol were proposed by the USAs cult leaders, who complained that "one could not properly serve the lord while under the influences of these substances"

    America's prison industry is the fastest growing segment of the economy.

    Treatment, not tyranny.
    Free America's POWs. End the drug war.

    For more information, see:
    http://www.lycaeum.org/drugwar/buckley1.html



    Treatment, not tyranny. End the drug war and free our American POWs.
  • .... and there a courts to take this issue to before one resorts to picketing.
    That is not true. Courts are supposed to enforce laws and contracts. The courts usually do not enforce fairness and decency. means. Look at the SAG [sag.org] pickets -- there was no law or contract, but they were applying pressure to get a contract.

    On the issue of risks, you are correct to an extent. But, that has it's limit -- look at OSHA and workers compensation.

    ON finances, how much research are you supposed to do? There has been cases where courts have held that On a job interview, I asked if the company had income or if they were getting angel funding. I worked for a place that owes me over $20k in back pay, but they have no money. It's common in the .bombs. In one place, my first paycheck bounced.

  • In some states, Mass. for one, the officers of the corporation has personal liability for unpaid wages. In Mass. it's not only civil, but criminal.

    I mean, I know these hi-tech workers do feel cheated to who is supposed to pay for that , the taxpayers ?
    Who is asking for taxpayers to foot the bill for lost wages?

  • by www.sorehands.com (142825) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @08:47AM (#182009) Homepage
    Here it would not be a national issue.

    Here in the USA, many people seem take the attitude, "Get over it and work for a living or If you any good, you'd get another job.

    How many times have you walked by a building with two people picketing and not paid attention to why they were picketing? It seems as though many people don't care about an issue until it effects them.

  • Having grown up all over the world, I can say without a doubt that the US police forces are some of the best and most professional on the planet. In all the cases you've outlined, the stories made major news headlines because major news networks are located here. If other countries had half the journalists and handycam-toting citizens that we do then you'd see a lot more horrific stories and images done by other police forces around the world.
    --
  • Thats great, get out your resume in an economy with 12% unemployment and just wait for the calls to come back to you..

    You are pretty clearly used to working in an employees market - I hope you never get to see what life is like in a employers market.
  • King was fucked up - thrashing around at the cops. There were *MANY* cops - none of them was ever in danger... they were not justified in their actions - not even a tiny little bit.
  • No. Peacful protesters were the other 99.999% who did not throw anything but where tear-gased and beaten anyway.

    I was in Quebec. I saw nary a broken window. There was no rioting. There were alot of cops gassing people - not alot of rioting.

    Dont feel so sure of yourself - you dont know what your talking about. You obviously are biased against the protesters - if not you could never justify the sheer bullshit perpetrated by the cops on the 25-30,000 or so who just wanted to chant near the fences... it was a police state. It was scary the way the police were acting, assaulting innocent bystanders & people singing, sitting and chanting.

  • fundemental flaws in the Spanish Economy, which despite its hurculean efforts towards reform still has some problems.

    In Spain - they probably feel that they have a right to work. A right to moderate-high levels of security and reasonable wages.

    I agree. The workers create wealth. The owners do not. Workers deserve (have the right) to a balanced relationship in their treatment/conditions as the bosses.

    There culture seems very healthy to me, who cares about their fucking 'economy' - the 'economy' is meant to serve the community. Not the other way around.

    I wont even touch the relationship that your comment has to American Imperialism, ignorance and myopia... needless to say - it is terribly self evident that your priorities and attitude betray your 'imbalance in perspective'.

  • by SubtleNuance (184325) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @02:25PM (#182031) Journal
    in response to Molotov cocktails and golf balls being thrown at them

    Bullshit - I was in Quebec. I saw ZERO acts of violence aimed at the cops. The most I personally saw was some kids pulling ads out of their 'place' in busshelters.

    I was on the other hand teargased. I saw people with broken limbs and split skin from rubber bullets. I *PERSONALLY* saw a person get clubbed by 3 cops and drug away by their hair and whatnot.

    Dont give me your bullshit... the police violence *FAR* outweighted the reported violence of some people. Furthermore, I personally feel that some of the molotov throwers (and others acting this way) were in fact *COPS* themselves - you cannot justify 4500 teargas cans without some kind of violence can you. Simply tearing down a fence doenst make quite the headlines as molotovs... hence someone made sure some were thrown. Besides - even if SOME people were throwning molotoves - that does *NOT* give a police force the justification to treat non-volent people the way they were, even if they were standing right beside the thrower.

    The cops in Quebec were animals.

  • Hey,

    Siesta isn't lazy hours, it's sanity. Your body's natural rhythm is to slow down at around 2PM.

    Yah. The problem is people eating. All the food you eat at lunchtime ends up in your intestines around 2PM.

    Now, your intestines want to get all the nutrients and things out of this food. But the way the nutrients and things are transferred is by diffusion. There's little holes in your intestines' linings, and the nutrients go through them. On the inside of your intestines, there is level X, and outside, level Y. X and Y naturally try to equalise, so you need to keep the outside level (Y) low, so nutrients keep getting transferred.

    To do that, when nutrients diffuse out, you need to move them away as quickly as possible. They ae moved in the blood, so you need quite a bit of it flowing around as you digest things. More than you normally use. So blood is directed from other body areas - i.e. the brain, muscles, etc - to help carrying the nutrients away from the gut. The blood being directed away to the gut means cells in the brain, muscles, etc. get less food-carrying blood flow and thus less food, which is required to perform.. well, most things.

    In conclusion, after you eat, your body floods the guts with blood to make digestion work. This influx of blood comes at the expense of other organs, such as the brain. Which makes us tired.

    Interesting, eh?

    Michael
  • Quote from the article:
    He placed his hand on a shopping cart filled with softball-sized rocks and said: "If they come to evict us we'll be ready."

    They must be big George Lucas fans, if they're adopting Ewok technology to fight the evil empire...

  • by imuffin (196159) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @11:12AM (#182041)
    I haven't grown up all over the world, but I have visited all over the US, and I've had cops point guns at me and treat me generally like shit more times that I can count. Once, when working a trade show in San Jose, I had to get a cheap hotel room on the "bad side of town" because all the rooms in the city were full. The next morning the cops busted in with six guns pointed at me, drug me out of the room in my underwear and then searhed my room immediately after I denied them permission. Why? Because I rented a car the day before that had been reported stolen a year in the past. The cops were rude and very rough, and after I showed them proof that I had just rented the vehicle, didn't even apoligize. I've had several similar run ins with the law in Europe (The Netherlands, Spain) and I can say that each time the cops were much more polite. The best thing: when I reach into my pocket or bag for a passport or something, they don't freak out and point their guns at me!
  • "LAPD - We treat you like a King."
  • by Schwarzchild (225794) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @12:51PM (#182047)
    Thats great, get out your resume in an economy with 12% unemployment and just wait for the calls to come back to you..

    That's so true. In Spain people feel very lucky to get a job! There was high unemployment there during our so-called Boom in the late 90's. You can't just drop one job and go looking for another.

  • On the same token though, I have had trouble with being pulled over in a bad part of town supposedly for squealing tires, which was a class one misdemeanor, when the cops really should be looking through bad areas (alley ways, etc) to get the real creeps. The officer that cited me didn't even note that I had a witness, my passenger, but he noted that he had a witness, another officer. The fuckhead (and I only use the term because it truly does fit) didn't even have his facts straight, and I had to go into court and explain all of this to the prosecutor, who felt that the officer was wasting his time by making him prosecute something that had LOTS of holes in it.

    Don't get me wrong, I don't hate the police, I might get pissed at some specific officers, but that is an officer by officer assessment. We see in the news places like Cincinatti, where the police DO seem to have a problem, and probably need to be severely cleaned up, but many places do have decent forces. I just wish that the departments would hold the officers more accountable for what the do, and if they constantly issue citations that are struck down in court, the officer needs to come under scrutiny.

    Just my two cents...

    "Titanic was 3hr and 17min long. They could have lost 3hr and 17min from that."
  • The problem is that he deserved a good beating for refusing to stay down when they finally got the guy. No, they shouldn't have whacked the guy so bloody hard, but that is why the cops who did this beating are NOT IN JAIL!

    Apparently you, like the judge, are ignorant of the law.

    The police are not there to provide punishment. If Rodney King deserved anything for his behavior, that decision is not to be made by police officers. It is to be made by a court from a menu of legally-sanctioned choices.

    Once you say that a police officer is justified in selecting and carrying out punishment in the field, you might as well abandon any pretense of justice. Just use the money you're spending on courts to hire and outfit a great big pack of thugs, and set them loose on the streets to beat anyone who "deserves" it.

  • When a man resists arrest, the police then must use physical force.

    When someone resists arrest, the police are authorized to use such force as is necessary and sufficient to make the arrest. They are not authorized to then go ahead and beat the person senseless as punishment. Police are not authorized to punish under any circumstances.

    Get this through your fucking skull: Never fucking argue with a motherfucker who has a badge and a gun and a nightstick and has the AUTHORITY to break any of those on your fucking head and you'll be alot better off.

    Fortunately the police do not, as I've said above, have that authority.

    In any case, the real advice is, don't argue unless you are going to be good at it.

    Police officers have as much a knack for self-preservation as anyone else, and they can tell if you know the boundaries between your rights and theirs.

    -- raju1kabir, who is a nonwhite male, and who argues with mishebaving police any chance he gets, and sports no broken bones as a result.

  • I'm Spanish and I think I've got the answers to your questiones (well, at least, I'll try ;-) ).
    Here, finding a job isn't that easy (it took my girlfriend almost a year to find a job), but the worst part of it, is that Telefonica (here, we call it "Timofonica", who is something like "cheat-fonica") owns Sintel. And... do you know who owns Telefonica?. Yes, the goberment. I don't know if you stand a chance in winnig a case against your gob' there, but here you don't have any...
    So, they should get a job. Agreed, but if they want their money back... ...they should do something to make the goverment move, and, damn, they owe them months of payment...
  • From the article:
    With a mixture of ingenuity and tenacity, the workers have transformed their claim to $10 million in unpaid wages and refusal to accept forced resignations into a national issue.

    Getting royally screwed isn't just "business." Besides some people take pride when they help build something and are not simply willing to move on. Sometime standing up for principle is better than making money. Too bad that is something that doesn't count for much in America.

    ---

  • Anyway, it looks so socialist to demand guaranteed jobs from government...

    Pardon me, Mr. or Ms. Burbilog, but if you'll read the blinking article, you'll see that the sqatters aren't "demand[ing] guaranteed jobs from government," they're asking the government to force their former employer to hand over the back pay it owes them, and to punish that US-based employer for (as they see it) screwing the workers by abandoning the Madrid company.

    This is one of the problems with this particular global economy, and with the corporation as an economic unit. The corporate structure separates the owners of a business with the operations of that business, and allows for no accountability for corporate actions. The "globalization" that protesters complain about is simply a further separation of work from money, so they're in separate countries, so them that calls the shots don't even need to think about them that does the work.

    We in the US need a similarly robust culture of protest against corporate injustice. It existed in the early 20th century, the era of the muckrakers, the Sherman Antitrust Act, and the labor unions (yes, I know unions have gone way off track, but the impetus to form them was real). What we need is a squat-in like in the article, not a sit-in by rich kids in some president's office at an elite ivy-choked institution, but by laid-off workers at a corporate site. Whoo hoo!

  • by limekiller4 (451497) on Saturday June 02, 2001 @10:03AM (#182099) Homepage
    an AC (aren't they all?) wrote:
    "2) The guy who sodomized the poor guy with a broken broom handle is now serving a lengthy stretch in a state prison, so what is your point? "

    Uruk replied:
    "Uh, that he did it?"

    Not to mention that not a single police officer that heard Volpe bragging about the incident reported it. This, to me, is more telling than the act itself. Sodomizing Louima was the act of one coward. Everyone keeping silent points to an entire system which teaches cops that such things are tolerated. I can't condemn an entire force for the actions of one, but I can sure as hell condemn them for not throwing that one to the lions. And yes, you did address this, I just wanted to elaborate a bit.

    Uruk added:
    "But then again, you're probably a middle class whiteboy who doesn't have to worry about these types of things, since you're never a target. What do you care?"

    While the AC is clearly either naive or a troll (his "If he hadn't run, he wouldn't have gotten shot" logic is hilarious), ad hominem attacks aren't much better. I thought far more of your post before I got to the end.

    My .02,

  • I applaud the Spanish folks! Being moral demands being free. The new "waves" of "freedom" that are surfing the biosphere somehow smell freer than this old American air...

In a consumer society there are inevitably two kinds of slaves: the prisoners of addiction and the prisoners of envy.

Working...