It is not easy to understand the real debate within Podemos, although deep down it continues to be the same debate that actually triggered its creation. I will try to explain that.
The first important issue is that Spain is undergoing a regime crisis. Something that has worked well in the last 30 years was the stability of the political system and a broad social consensus; both were built around the promise of economic growth, social welfare and E.U. membership at the end of the road.
The PSOE has been in many ways the regime’s party. It guaranteed capitalist modernization, it aligned with the interests of the dominant economic groups and it obtained a significant consensus among the working classes.
In 2008, everything broke down: unemployment growth, radical cuts in services and social rights, and the electorate’s radical questioning of dominant parties, accelerated by evidence of corruption as a systemic issue. The second essential factor was the mobilization of 15-M Movement (Los Indignados), an unprecedented mobilization of workers; the middle class, which was undergoing a process of proletarianization; and a generational divide over the future and the expectations of young people. This movement demanded real democracy, social protection and defense of civil liberties.