Thursday, December 12, 2013

Submission in a union; Union corruption; Motoring mystery; Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?; & A bad boys' book.

You'll have heard of the book by an Italian lady which, allegedly, tells women to be submissive to their husbands. I say 'allegedly' only because because I haven't read it. But the Spanish title is something of a giveaway - Cásate y sé sumisa – 'Get Married and Be Submissive'. Not very surprisingly, it's been published here by the Catholic authorities in Grenada, where the Archbishop had defended it against the demands of Spain's (few) feminists that it be banned. He accuses them of hypocrisy as "Abortion is a much clearer example of violence against women." As if he'd know. But, anyway, the book will be a huge seller and no doubt the author will give her royalties to the (not terribly poor) Catholic Church to finance anti-abortion campaigns. As if.

The large trade-union, UGT, is in trouble over corruption claims down south and the finger of suspicion now points at its long-time leader. An enterprising blogger has looked at photographs of him over the years and asked how come he can afford to have 5 watches with total value of €25,000. Which seems a pretty fair question to me. I wonder if the Tax Office has ever put it to him.

I've recently used the old N(Nacional) roads - as opposed to autopistas - to drive to both Ourense and Santiago. In each case, there are numerous villages to pass through en route and ahead of every one the speed signs show 80, 60 and 50kp. And then, some time after leaving the villages, there's an End of 70 sign. Though occasionally it's 80. Which is all rather confusing as you're supposed to be at 50. I guess it's a relic of faster times, when you could go through villages at the higher speeds. And I suspect the confusion caused is not an accident. But that's how you get in a society riven by conspiracy theories. You start to see tax inspectors in Civil Guard uniforms.

In the latest development in the Spanish government's campaign to increase 'public security' it's announced that private security employees will have the power to search and arrest people in public. For example in sports stadiums. I'm queasy about this, wondering what safeguards there will be for the public. Interestingly, the concept of citizen arrest doesn't seem to be known in Spain, if this article is correct. So one is left wondering whether security guards will be running the same risks as individuals do in, say Anglo, countries. Meanwhile, we can smile at the knowledge that at least one city mayor owns a private security firm. Possibly saw this coming.

Finally . . . And back to books that upset Spanish women: A joke book for young boys has been taken off the market after Spain's Women's Institute threatened to take the publishing company to court over its chauvinistic content. Mind you, this took 3 or 4 years of campaigning against the misogynistic garbage.

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