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BAUEN, day 96

A provisional epilogue

And in case it was not entirely clear who is who in this story, La Nación put it in black and white. Judge Hualde sent another eviction notice in March, with a deadline of April 14.

Since that was Good Friday, which everyone had off, she later sent a correction, and the date was moved to April 19. Macri had already vetoed the expropriation after Christmas.

With the letters sent and the cooperative ready to fight for its rights as it had throughout its whole history, the newspaper La Nación published a virulent editorial on Tuesday, March 14, against businesses recovered by their workers and, especially, against the BAUEN hotel. The paper’s purpose of the daily was transparent: to pressure Congress not reject the veto and the judge not to hesitate to carry out the eviction. This kind of pressure is becoming a consistent methodology of press outlets addicted to the government and to fraudulent businesses. Jorge Lanata did something similar when the expropriation of the Petinari factory was approved (unanimously) in the legislature of the province of Buenos Aires, by holding an extremely friendly interview with the former owners (who owe AR$60 million in back pay), who asked governor María Eugenia Vidal to veto the law. The law was vetoed, and the workers were evicted by a police mega-operation of 600 officers on March 3. Today, they are camping in the front of the factory that they had managed to reactivate as a cooperative called Acoplados del Oeste. This is the fate some seek for the BAUEN.

Naturally, it’s not the first time that the Mitre family’s newspaper has editorialized against the recovered businesses. These are outbursts from bosses who are indignant at the audacity of this experience of self-management, which defends jobs and productive infrastructure that would be irretrievably lost (which has been in the news every day for a year and a half) if workers did not occupy their workplaces to preserve them from the voracity of owners that destroy assets and bankrupt their businesses, intentionally and fraudulently. They do it in the name of legality, because know that their case is damaged by the enormous legitimacy that the workers have, as they defend the possibility of having a job and a living wage, forming cooperative businesses that are more humane and, when they have the necessary tools, more efficient, because they do not pursue the maximum benefit for their owner, but collective well-being.


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