Monday, March 19, 2012

Star treatment; Iberian politics; Riot control; Water colourists; and Celtic names in Galicia

Having mentioned a brothel yesterday, it's only apt that I now cite a cautionary saw, from an age of more rudimentary medical treatment - One night with Venus but a lifetime with mercury.

Although Spain's president, Mariano Rajoy, was lionised a week or so ago for standing up to Brussels on the country's deficit target for 2012, as the smoke clears it seems he may have achieved a pretty Pyrrhic victory. He's certainly made enemies among his colleagues, upset by his timing and tactics but, worse, he's given the Commission cause for interference in the government of Spain. Meaning closer scrutiny of budgets and "zero tolerance for any more budget slippage." So, the battle won but the war lost, perhaps. More here.

Spain's western neighbour, Portugal, may yet confirm the pessimist view that it's on the same trajectory as Greece, albeit several months behind. Ambrose E. P. reports that:- The giant bond fund PIMCO has said Europe has not yet tamed its debt crisis and will soon face a “second Greece” in Portugal as the country’s economy spirals downwards. Details here. At least they now know the script.

Demonstrating his tenuous grasp of democratic politics, the London-based father-in-law of Syria's President Assad has asked why David Cameron didn't use troops to quell the city's riots last year. As, he said, his son-in-law had successfully done in Syria. He's a respected cardiologist, it seems. Though possibly one with fewer friends than last week.

Still in London . . . There's an exhibition there of water colours by Turner and his inspiration, Claude. No, I hadn't heard of him, either. Their land and seascapes are tremendous, of course, but someone has, rather bitchily, pointed out that neither of them could paint people to save his life. Hence all the land and seascapes, I guess.

There was a time when I used to get annoyed when a newscaster announced that he or she was going to read emails from people whose views were of no interest to me. In fact, it still irritates me. But now there's something even worse; bloody tweets appear on the screen while the newscaster is talking. It's enough to send me back to the radio.

The Olympics are nearly upon us in the UK and they're taking up an increasing amount of newspaper space. Where I read that one competitor - from my old stamping ground, the Seychelles - will be Gaylord Silly. I don't know what event. Perhaps the Silly Walk.

Finally . . . Here's an interesting article for those anxious to know how many Celtic place-names there are in Galicia. By the way, did you know that a colony of Britons was established in Galicia in the 5th or 6th century AD? No one knows why. Probably got lost looking for Barcelona.


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Candide said...

YES. Emails were bad enough, but now the horrible tweets!

We're so old-fashioned, Colin....

Cheap journalism is here to stay.

Colin said...

Only too true, Candide!