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News ::
06 Aug 2002
the neoliberal model in Argentina, and the challenges
for the global movement. BUENOS AIRES, August

Dear friends throughout the world: My name is
Pablo Bergel, and I'm writing you from Buenos Aires,
Argentina. We are in the midst of preparing the World
Thematic Social Forum on the Argentine Crisis that
will take place in Buenos Aires from August 22 to
August 25.

The Forum will unite a variety of social activists
with a diversified schedule of activities, including
representatives from the unemployed "piquetero"
movement, the neighborhood assemblies, unions,
movements of agricultural women, ecological groups,
human rights organizations, etc.

Among the protagonists emerging from this profound
crisis are the small investors, whose funds have been
taken by the financial system under a governent
decreed and bank-supported "bank freeze", thus
violating their private property rights, their legal
rights, and the contract betwen savers and the banks
who have always promised them "Your money is safe with

This aspect of the Argentine crisis, that has much in
common with the crisis of the huge multinationals in
the countries of the North ( Enron, Worldcom,
Vivendi,etc.) has had several new and important

a) It has mobilized in a radical way members of the
middle and lower middle classes against the current
financial system, the banks the government, the IMF,
the World bank, etc.

b) It has produced an enormous "illegimitazation" of
the global financial system.

c. It has opened a huge opportunity for the
construction of a long term global network that
rejects the current capitalist world financial system
and works to create alternatives that we have
provisionarily named "Savers of the World Unite"

The objective of this campaign is a worldwide
mobilization of savers and small time investors
against the current global financial system and in
favor of new and transparent institutions which
include democratic control and ecologically sound
practices and are committed to real economic growth.

We have decided to dedicate a day of the forum to this
issue, with activities conducted by savers and others
who have been harmed by the world banking and
financial system.

We are planning, in conjunction with the Independant
Movement of Argentine Savers a series of panels and
activities throughout this day, including a discussion
of the global campaign "Savers of the World, Unite!"

People from various social movements and non-profit
organizations, as well as lawyers, judicial
specialists, and political representatives have
already committed to participate in the activity,
which will take place in the Ateneo Theater in the
center of Buenos Aires.

First,we'd like to invite you personally to
participate in the diverse activities of the Social
Forum in Buenos Aires this August.

Second, we'd like to invite you to participate and
collaborate with a worldwide social network whose
objective is a campaign against the current financial
system and for the development of humane financial

Third, we'd like to ask your help in disseminating
this initiative and invitation, especially to people
who have been harmed by Enron, Worldcom, Vivendi and
other companies and to activist and non profit
organizations. Their participation, along with the
Argentine savers, in the Buenos Aires forum would be
vary valuable.

We are aware of the short time remaining before the
Forum, as well as the fact that August is a month of
vacation in the north. These times of crisis have
forced us to work creatively and improvisationally.

Thank you very much, we are looking forward to your
collaboration and participation!

pablo bergel - pablobergel (at) ;
arcoiris (at) ; (54-11) 4553-0845 -
Buenos Aires.

crisis of the neoliberal model in ARgentina, and the
challenges for the global movement. Thursday, 22
August, to Sunday 25 August, 2002.

Day Long Forum: "Savers of the World Unite!"

Saturday 24 August 2002. 9:00-5:00PM.
Ateneo heater, Paraguay 918, Buenos Aires

Objectives: An in depth discussion and analysis of
all aspects of the Argentine situation as a precursor
and herald of the world financial crisis which has
already begun. "Globalization" of the Argentine
situation, to let others know what could be the
possible consequences of the world financial crisis,
to invoke solidarity with the Argentine people, to
develop campaigns and programs which work to insure
the legitimate interests and rights of small time
savers worldwide, and for the transformation of the
current global financial system towards a more
democratic,ethical, secure and environmentally
responsible financial system.


Panels, Conferences and Discussions about the savers
and others who have been harmed by the financial and
banking system, in Argentina and in the World, with
the presence and participation of:

-Savers Groups from all over the country, who have
been cheated and swindled by the financial system.

-Urban and rural debtors (homeowners with mortgages,
small businesses and farms, etc.)

-Workers and employers of banks and financial

-Other groups and social movements whose rights have
been abused by the financial system. (The unemployed,

-Professionals, non profit organizations and others
who are in solidarity with the savers movement.

-Foreign representatives and individuals of savers
groups who have been victims of financial fraud in the
first world (ie, with Enron, Worldcom, Vivendi,)and in
neighboring countries.


9:00AM: Reception/Sign-up

9:30AM: Opening Talk. Explanation of the local and
global meaning of the " Savers of the World Unite"
under the rubric of the World Social Forum.
Explanation of the program and day's activities.

10-11:00AM: Argentine Savers: "From the pain in the
pocket to the pain in the soul," Four speakers from
savers groups in different regions of the country. (
Ten minutes each, followed by 20 minutes of questions
and open debate, conducted by a moderator.)

11:00-12:00AM. Harmed by the System: savers, debtors,
bank workers, unemployed, small business owers:
"Different victims of the same mafia." Ten minutes of
speeches by five or six representatives of these

Recess: 30-45 Minutes.

1:00-2:00PM. Legal specialists: National and
international Legal Campaigns.

2:00-3:00 4th Panel: Political represetatives:
Political and legislative actions. Four panelists, ten
minutes of speeches, twenty minutes of questions and

Recess: 15 minutes.

3:15-4:30PM. 5th Panel: The swindling of the savers of
the North: the cases of Enron, Worldcom, Vivendi,
etc. and their relationship with the Argentine case.
Four or five panelists, Argentine and foreign

4:30-5:30PM. 6th Panel-" Savers of the World, Unite!
Another Bank is necessary and possible." Explanation
and discussion of the struggles of small time savers
and investors in Argentina, the regiion, and the first
world: worldwide global campaign and network against
mafioso plundering and for new and democratic
financial rules and institutions. Four or Five
panelists from Argentina and elsewhere.

5:30PM. Conclusions and Closing Talk.


By Pablo Bergel

"They are Enron, we are Argentina..." This slogan,
chanted in rhythm with the banging of pots,
accompanied the march against the representatives of
global financial capitalism meeting at the Davos Forum
in the beginning of Feburary in New York.

Since then, the succession of frauds and swindles
that have cheated small time savers and investors
through banks, retirement and pension funds and all
the paraphenalia of "financial products" that has been
invented to capture the money of the working and
middle classes of the developed world, has not stopped
collecting more and more "big names"--Worldcome,
Xerox, Merril Lynch, the auditor Arthur An derson,
Citicorp, JP Morgan, Vivendi..the list goes on, mixed
up with the names of politicians: vice president
Cheney, president Bush.

No, these are not isolated incidences, nor are they
deviations of a healthy and legitimate financial

Nor is the robbery of savers by private banks in
Argentina,with the complicity of the IMF and the
corrupt obsequience of politicians, judges and
legislators, a "deviation of the rule", an isolated
case that just happened to strike a decadent and
distant country, something that "never could happen in
the first world." On the contrary: this is the rule,
this is the system in its phase of the bursting of the
speculative financial bubble. This is world
capitalism as it exists in its culminating stage,
after having done away with productive activity, with
employment, with public health and education
programs, after having razed the environment and
submitted the entire planet to its speculative logic,
this system has collapsed upon itself, upon its own
purported values and principles: private property,
contracts between human beings and institutions, the
rights of law and democracy. In this fall, it is
eating its own children..the small time savers and
investors of Argentina and the rest of the world: it
lies to them, it cheats them, it robs them
indiscriminately. World capitalism, which some have
called "savage" and some have called "benefactor"
now has become pure mafia. Small time savers, who
constitute the immense mass of global financial
capital are and will be the final victims of a system
they continue feeding and sustaining by blindly
delivering their savings and retirement plans and
which leads to fraud, cheating, and robbery.

Savers of the world: Are you sure of your money
tonight, in the bank, in its investment fund? Is your
money being used in the way you yourself would use it?
Are you sure that whatever institution now has your
money isn't robbing you this very minute? Or that
they arenīt robbing someone else, spreading hunger,
exploitation, child malnutrition, violence and wars,
destroying trees and oceans with your money?

How long are you going to put your own faith your
own future and the future of your grandchildren in
depersonalized and monstruous depersonalized
institutions, Frankensteins out of control? The
system has become insustainable: get out of it!

"Save your money and save the world: run on your
bank, before your bank runs over you!"

Savers of the world: you have an immense power, the
biggest of all, to stop the financial system from
plundering the world with your savings and from ending
up as its next victim. You have the power to say No,
to take out your money; to demand radical changes in
financial institutions, to create and contribute in
developing new institutions of investment, savings,
and credit.

A "general global strike" of depositors and investors,
a massive withdrawel of funds, is the decisive weapon
for smalltime savers against transnational
corporations. People, naturally, are going to ask:
"Where am I going to save my money, in my house?"
The answer is no, this won't be necessary. The answer
is to create new banking models that answer to the
real needs of the people.
But even if this were necessary, it's worth taking a
look at the Argentine example: here, the probability
of being robbed in your house is less than 1%, while
the probability of being robbed by your bank is

Savers of the world: another bank is possible,
another system of savings, investment and credit is
necessary for you security and prosperity and for that
of the entire world. A new system of financial
services that is committed to a real economy, with
production and consumption that is conscious of the
world's population, a system that is transparant and
democratic, with visibility and control, a service
that links savers with workers in order to enhance
social wealth and benefits for all. A bank that is on
the scale of its members and community, without
ususurious interest rates, where the redestribution of
capital would be in fair proportion to the wealth that
is created; a bank that is integrated with society, in
the service of fair business and employment, and
ecologically responsible.

All this is necessary and possible: in your own
economic self-defense, in defense of your society and
of future generations: a global campaign of savers who
reject the current financial system in favor of an
ethical, secure and practical bank, organized by a
social network of small time investors and creditors
(urban and farmworkers, consumers, entrepreneurs, and
others). This should be on the list of urgent global

Savers of the World, Unite!


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