As I often do, I took my dog into a bar today, where the owner made a bit of a fuss of him. Why do I mention this trivial occurrence? Well, because it’s one of several simple pleasures I used to enjoy years ago in the UK but which are now proscribed there for some reason or other. And it’s just one of the reasons why I regularly assert Spanish society is more sane than Britain’s. But it won’t last, of course. The current Minister of Health here shows signs of being an aspiring health fascist and she surely won’t be the last. It’s one of life’s great ironies that it’s always socialists who display this sort of tendency. All part of the ‘We know what’s best for [ignorant] individuals’ syndrome.
But just to redress the balance a bit – it’s a tad worrying to read that not only do you not need to be qualified or registered to be an estate agent in Spain but the same holds true for financial advisers. So it’s a good job there’s a high level of probity here. . .
Talking of insanity, if I were [like my younger daughter] a teacher in the UK, I’d be terrified by this announcement – “Under proposals to encourage greater public involvement in schools, parents could be given direct email and text message contact with their children’s teachers.” As we all know, the ‘paperless’ society has resulted in a deluge of pointless electronic messaging. Since my daughter already has trouble keeping up with the dozens of daily emails from her superiors and peers, I’m sure she’ll be thrilled to know she might soon have to handle nonsense from parents as well. This is surely a far more horrific prospect than having to produce your annual plan in the local co-official language.
It was reported in the media today that terrorism had moved back up to 3rd place in the list of things which worry the Spanish. Bang on time – and very much as expected – ETA today ended its latest ‘permanent ceasefire’ with a car bomb outside the new terminal at Madrid airport. So I fear we’ll see more of bloody Gerry Adams here in 2007, lecturing us on the need to respect everyone, no matter what they think, say or do. I can’t even manage respect for him.