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July 2022

BAUEN, day 69

Sidebar: Cromañón, or the complicity of the state and business owners ON December 31, 2004, a fire at a place known as the Republic of Cromagnon (managed by Omar Emir Chabán, a well-established business owner on the Argentine rock scene) claimed the lives of 194 people, the large majority of them young people. The survivors had with serious physical and psychological aftereffects, and some even committed suicide over the next few months (counting Martín Cisneros, who took his own life… Read More »BAUEN, day 69

BAUEN, day 68

In this assembly (which is recorded, once more, in Pierucci’s documentary), there was a rather intense debate between the workers, the leaders of the MNER (including Murúa and Resino), and Diego Kravetz. Kravetz tried to argue that the bill of temporary occupancy was going to lose, and that Morando’s bill was going to win the vote (which it ultimately did by 29 votes, a relatively low but sufficient number) but was going to be vetoed. Kravetz told the assembly: It’s… Read More »BAUEN, day 68

BAUEN, day 67

Agitated session in the Legislature The climate became more and more confrontational until, on December 6th, 2005, the bills came up for a vote on the floor. Kravetz’s bill did not get enough votes to be approved, and above all, to defeat Morando’s bill. This bill was presented to counter the one that sought to expropriate the hotel for workers, providing a “voteable” facade for various legislators with a certain agenda. Federico Tornarelli explains: The proposed bill called the two… Read More »BAUEN, day 67

BAUEN, day 66

The fight was not limited to Parliament or the judiciary. In contrast to other former owners of recovered businesses, the Iurcoviches, now characterized as Mercoteles, had an active communication policy. Internet portals and some important media outlets produced articles every so often that were no more than veiled propaganda in favor of the return of the bosses and attacks on the workers. On June 28, 2005, Mercoteles even published an editorial in the newspaper La Nación directed at the Legislature,… Read More »BAUEN, day 66

BAUEN, day 65

But the BAUEN was not among the thirteen, nor those added later. Federico Tonarelli, explains that, “like the expropriation bills that were approved for Chilavert, Grissinópoli, Ghelco, or the Patricio Print Shop, the BAUEN’s, presented by Diego Kravetz, was also for temporary occupancy of two years.” The bill, number 1505, was presented June 16th, 2005, and co-sponsored by legislators Ana Suppa, Mónica Bianchi, Silvia La Ruffa, Fernando Cantero, Fernando Melillo, Sergio Molina, Daniel Betti, Milcíades Peña, and Arturo Floreal, who… Read More »BAUEN, day 65

BAUEN, day 64

The struggle moves to the legislature The expropriation bill that Marcelo Ruarte mentioned was presented to the Legislature of the City of Buenos Aires by Diego Kravetz, a legislator and also the cooperative’s lawyer, although due to his position in the Parliament of Buenos Aires, the representation of the cooperative was being covered by his sister Florencia. The tool of expropriation laws had already been used widely to be able to legally consolidate the recovery of businesses and factories of… Read More »BAUEN, day 64

BAUEN, day 63

Ruarte summed up the situation in these terms in those days: We what we have through the judge in the bankruptcy case is custody of the property. Later, we’re in contact with the Government of the City, we’re advancing on expropriation, working on an enormous tax debt this gentleman who calls himself the owner has. So, because of that, we want to see how much the debt is, how much the hotel is worth. And because of that, if politicians… Read More »BAUEN, day 63

BAUEN, day 62

Chapter 9 Macrismo takes the stage: the “Morando Law” While the judicial minuet was going on behind the scenes, the BAUEN workers were confronted with a more concrete threat. After the Cromagnon massacre (see sidebar, below), the product of systematic and long-standing corruption between the business community and the government of the City of Buenos Aires, the highly sensitive issue of safety at shows became the excuse to close numerous recreational spaces that had been open to the public. In… Read More »BAUEN, day 62

BAUEN, day 61

And, what’s more, why did judge Hualde herself, having noted the mismatch of the dates of the transactions, decide to ignore it, ruling that the cooperative had to be evicted from the hotel and crediting ownership to Mercoteles? Of course, none of this was a surprise to the workers. Marcelo Iurcovich never stopped presenting himself to them as the boss, the real boss, as he did on the day of the occupation of the hotel in March of 2003. All… Read More »BAUEN, day 61

BAUEN, day 60

The reader will be able to discern a wide incongruity in the dates. Not only the last, in which Mercoteles (which is to say, the front men of the Iurcoviches) appears before the court, which “understands” the bankruptcy of Solari SA three and a half years after having acquired ownership. There’s something much more serious, which we will put in words that the judge Paula Hualde herself used in her finding of first instance on July 20, 2007, in an… Read More »BAUEN, day 60