There is much sincere grieving about the lack of an agreement to form a government, along with a certain exaggerated drama over the presumed death of an impulse for freedom that has overcome more serious circumstances than this one. It is part of a backward-looking view, often focused more on settling accounts and justifying giving up than on moving forward. It is inevitable, and even necessary for ridding oneself of the frustration over unfulfilled expectations. But let history go on, and let those who see themselves capable of writing it settle accounts when the time is right and when the end is in sight.
Now, however, time is running out: we will have elections in three months. And it´s getting late to consider on what basis we can convoke a vote of the patient, inpatient, and bored citizens. The upcoming elections will not be a second plebiscite or a simple return to the autonomic scenario. Two facts must be taken from the plebiscite: it produced a parliamentary majority in favor of independence, but it fell short in votes. Thus, it´s essential to broaden the pro-sovereignty social majority. And I think that Miquel Puig described the post-autonomy scenario, with its innocence already lost, well: “Independence and a better nation will be brought about by people of order, or it will not happen. It is now clearer than ever. We must get to work”.
For the road to the elections, then, I propose a new perspective and five main objectives. First, it would be inexcusable not to begin with a promise of reparations for those most unfairly harmed by a crisis that not everyone has had to shoulder equally as they should. Without a frank, bold, and believable self-criticism– especially by those who have been responsible for governing–, the first step cannot be taken. It must be self-examination, clearly, accompanied by a consistent and realistic plan of action, precise in the short-, medium-, and long-term. The parliamentary work of the last three months could be very useful.
Secondly, there must be a commitment to radical honesty. This means guaranteeing the maximum transparency and control possible in a quality democracy. And, to be believable, there must first be a rigorous scrutiny of the internal workings of the parties themselves. And I´m not thinking only of economic corruption, but also of democratic corruption in general: the management of these decisions and their results, of the information… and in both the ways of governing and the internal organization of the parties.
After satisfying these first two demands, we can move on to the maintenance and growth of the social base. On one hand, it is necessary to offer guarantees of legal and personal security for moderate citizens, who are in the majority. Puig talks of people of order, which is a way of referring to all those who wish to work with dignity, who are concerned with the future of their children and the planet, who want to prosper individually and collectively, and who know that the best bet for the future lies in civic education and knowledge. It is not indignation that can establish conditions, but rather responsibility. And much work has been done in this area that the plebiscites, inexplicably, ignored. In another matter, it is essential to provide an adequate response to those Catalans who have deep feelings for Spain. And this can only happen by making a precise proposal for a constructive relationship with Spain that will allow for and promise interaction under better conditions than the current ones.
Finally, of all the words used to describe the pro-independence process, the idea of emancipation– that is, freedom from enforced servitude– should end up being applied. A political, economic, social, and cultural emancipation that goes against no one and in favor of all. Shall we vote?