I mentioned a couple of weeks ago the scandalous baby trafficking of the Franco era and beyond. Now comes the news that, forty-four years after her newborn baby was fraudulently taken from her, a woman from Sexe (seshé) in Galicia has been reunited with her daughter. Click here for more on this.
The news continues to be pretty bad for Spain's government: There was a general strike today, with many thousands out on the street demonstrating against austerity measures and demanding jobs; the latest economic data show that Spain has slipped back into recession; last Sunday's election results were not at all good for a government trying to reduce spending in the autonomous regions; the cost of borrowing is back up to worrying levels; and budgetary planning has been given to a posse of un-sackable Brussels bureaucrats (or 'technicians', whatever that means) and a German delegation. The outcome will surely be more austerity and a growing inability to achieve anything like the deficit target imposed by the EU. Not just for this year but also for 2012. And the good news? Tourism continues to do well. As do exports, I believe.
But the really good news is that the EU has confirmed the fine of 152m euros imposed on Telefónica way back in 2007, for abusing its dominant position in Spain's broadband market. I say it's good news but there's unlikely to be any change in their predatory practices.
Here's another of those Spanish headlines which are hard to imagine seeing in a UK paper - Madrid Prostitutes Boycott the Bankers. That said, I guess there are at least a couple of tabloids which would be happy to run with this one. Anyway, the angels of the night are declining the business of bankers until credit is flowing again. And the bankers, it seems, are resorting to pretending they are lawyers or architects. Desperate times, desperate measures.
In the gym I attend there's a sign saying Swimbrite Swimming School. I wonder that the Swimbrite label adds to this. Especially as it's a brand of tile polish.
Which reminds me . . . I saw a TV ad last night for a shampoo said to contain something like Agrimite. What the hell is that? Do they just invent names every few months so they can claim novelty? Was it ever thus?
Finally . . . I'm now of an age when people you've known - and sometimes loved - begin to pass away, starting with teachers and others who influenced your life. This week it was the scoutmaster of the Merseyside troop I belonged to from 11 to 17. I haven't seen him for decades but he remains large in my memory, not only as the scoutmaster but also as the guy who threw himself into organising an annual gang-show, in which I loved to perform. And for once telling me I wouldn't be bad looking if it wasn't for my nose. Bastard. But a nice one. Rest in peace, Paul.