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Meeting in the First Days of Winter: Protest Activity Is Growing While Opposition Nothing Doing?

Meeting in the First Days of Winter: Protest Activity Is Growing While Opposition Nothing Doing?
Buslaev Artem 23.01.2007

When you write the report about protest actions which took place, certainly, first of all one wants to stress their positive results. There were enough positive results in the meetings which took place on the first day of Moscow winter, on the 20th of January, 2007 in Kilmovsk –a town situated near Moscow (in connection with its geographical position there were two meetings held at once: at 12 p.m. in the street Vesenyaya and at 2p.m. in Grivno area).

To begin with that the quantity gathered considerably exceeded that we collected earlier. It became possible, firstly, owing to increases of tariffs taken place from January, 1st on everything. In the announcement of meetings we already wrote that some of the inhabitants of Klimovsk had already received receipts for the payment of rent for January in the amount of 3-4 thousand roubles (for comparison - even in browned off Moscow the rent is at a level of 1300-1400 roubles). On this parameter Klimovsk has already for some years keeping a level of the town with the highest tariffs in Moscow area. Assuming the fact that neigbouring Podolsk, vise versa, has the lowest tariffs in Moscow area.

It happened because of the fact that the mayor they had been having in Podolsk for a long time was a member of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation and "red" chapters of administrations usually have more conscience, steal less and, accordingly, leave more to people. New administration of Podolsk also tries to restrain reform of housing and communal services. In Klimovsk mayor Menshov before the election was the owner of a trumpet factory and now buys from the factory pipes "for repair of a waterpipe" by means of city budget and, certainly, thricehold and without any tender. That is he practically pumps money from city budget into own pocket. Simple citizen have to pay for it.

Orators acted on meeting explained to people an essence of these frauds (here you can see that even in two neighbouring cities tariffs differ almost twice and strongly depend on positions of local authorities. When on any other meeting any local official will approve that tariffs do not depend on him as soon as they are imposed from above – you can spit in deceitful face of the liar). Judging from reaction of the population, the trust of klimovchan to Menshov has been sharply falling down - if even recently during meetings we had to listen to the remarks into his support, today you can’t hear any.  

One more reason why the quantity of protesters in Klimovsk appeared to be higher than earlier is that in preparation of meeting considerable help was rendered to us by the supporters who enrolled during the previous actions. The quantity of available contacts has passed into quality: participants of meeting voted for creation of Committee of self-organizing (on the sample of existing in other cities of Moscow area committees of rescue). Representative of Russian Communist Party of Workers and Russian Young Communist League presiding on the meeting A.Buslaev made real examples of organizing in other towns located near Moscow (Solnechnogorsk, Dubna, etc) of such Committees and their achieving definite real concessions.  

Representatives of movement of "Women of Moscow Area", the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, the Agrarian party and other public organizations operating in town also acted on the meetings in Klimovsk. Really, the problem of struggle against antinational reforms unites today the most different forces. The speakers marked that the main weapon of the population in struggle for protection of the rights is self-organizing. A wide spectrum of questions was included into the list of requirements of the resolution of meeting – starting from problems of town level (against cutting down of a wood zone under construction of commercial objects) to the questions of big policy (protesters expressed their opinion in support of Belarus in connection with recent gas events). But, certainly, the main item of their demands became questions connected with cancellation of the latest decisions about increase of tariffs.

An interesting episode happened in an electric train on a return way from Klimovsk to Moscow. A controller appeared in the train and, naturally, all normal passengers having seen the controller on the nearest station run out from a train and enter that carriage whence the controller has already left. However, as it was found out, the authority found justice on this national invention. Now controllers work in two groups simultaneously in two neighbouring carriages. If you will run from one controller into the next carriage, you come into the hands of the other group. Now one should run quicker – one has to run across two carriages. In this case the driver of the train happened to be decent person – he didn’t close doors till the last person entered the train. You can see how many interesting things you can learn if you leave from time to time your apartments!

On the next day, on January, 21st another meeting in Moscow near the cinema "Zvezdny", metro station "Vernadsky's Prospect" took place. The choice of the place of carrying out of meeting was essential - to carry it out in sleeping area, closer to a residence of people, not somewhere in the center which are not visited by simple citizens and to we have to carry out meetings using forces of own active. Usually they say that it is necessary to hold a meeting in the center because there will be journalists there and journalists will not go to sleeping area. However, representatives of mass media came to our meeting on the 21st of January including radio and TV. They will continue coming to any place we choose as sweeties as soon as the theme chosen is so up-to-date.

Here, except for the questions of housing and communal services, the basic question was a problem of the increase for a payment for travel. We shall remind that in Moscow it is already 25 roubles for 1 trip on the ground transport. Problems of housing and communal services also have not disappeared anywhere. In the end of December Luzhkov wrote big article in "MK" about notorious "choice of three forms of management" which essence was that generally he completely supported the reform of housing and communal services, the only thing he didn’t agree with - the terms of carrying out of those reforms, as to the rest – yes, he agreed. In the same article Luzhkov declared that “sooner or later” Muscovites have to create housing cooperatives. That is even though under the pressure of previous national actions authorities had to make some concessions, eventually they will try to return back their positions. That is why it’s impossible to relax.

The quantity of participants of Moscow meeting was, probably, not enough for capital scale but all the same there were more people than, for example, on the previous meeting which passed on the same place in the beginning of December. That is protest activity of the population grows - as due to the general deterioration of position of the population as a result of reforms carried out and due to the fact that our long work in concrete places starts to bring results.

In the beginning of this article I wrote that in report about protest actions which took place usually you bring to focus positive results and try not to speak about minuses. Now, however, it is necessary to change this tradition and to talk also about minuses. Despite of obvious growth of quantity of protesters this growth could be still higher, if... If not the uttermost indifference of our oppositionists to these questions. For example, the author of these lines had to go to Klimovsk to the meeting alone – all other party members and Komsomols ignored it despite of the party decision about carrying out of this action. As a result there were no banners (which promotes gathering of people very much), no reserve megaphone (that one that we had could break any moment – what a shame it could be). Situation with pasting of announcements about meeting in Moscow was almost the same.

Comrades, are you really sure that reform of housing and communal services will not touch you? That you personally are not under the threat of eviction for non-payment, that they will thrust out only unfamiliar to you suckers and you will only use it in propagation? Or you think that 25 roubles for one trip – is normal? If everybody, absolutely everybody had more important things to do during the moment of carrying out of the first meeting in Moskow region this year? Common, tell us – what can be more important than protection of oneself from the coming thrusting out from a flat? Common, tell us, I say!

I write it meaningly in the open source. Let me get personal case, may be in the process of its scrutiny it will be possible to raise a question of reasons of such sabotage. All the same I have a lot of reprimands, so it’s not principal whether I have one reprimand more or less. I am more anxious about other matters. Whether to carry out or cancel meeting in Khimky planned for January, 27th? On the one hand, undoubtedly, it is necessary to carry it out - people have already received receipts on payment under new tariffs, it is impossible to leave them alone with their disaster (later it will be too late as soon as people will get accustomed to new tariffs).

On the other hand, minding such attitude – one can be sure that it will be a failure – fro sure it will be a failure!

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