Tuesday, June 19, 2012


There's quite a lot of corruption in Spain. The latest seems to involve a cove who diverted 40 million euros - yes, forty million - in the wrong direction. But the scandal which is currently thrilling the Spanish centres on the President of the General Council of the Judiciary and the Supreme Court. He's a man in his sixties who's long postured as a pillar of Catholic society and as a good husband and father. At weekends, though, he's been jetting off to spend time with his young boyfriend, one of his bodyguards. With the emphasis on 'body'. As if this wasn't dim enough, he's been using public funds to finance the trips. To the tune of 28,000 euros. Which is, of course, peanuts compared with the 40 million siphoned off by the guy I mentioned earlier. But it's like the old joke about lawyers in Heaven, we get a lot of politicians fiddling millions but we don't get many judges living a double life of such a colourful nature.

I've mentioned a couple of times over the years that Spain may be the only country in the world where yellow is considered an aggressive colour for a car. But, truth to tell, I saw a yellow car being driven very aggressively in the UK last week. Almost inevitably, though, it was a Seat León.

I thought that GLT (goal line technology) was being introduced in the Euros. Apparently not, much to the irritation of the Ukrainians. Who deserved not only to equalise against England but also to win the match. England, of course, played their traditional game of Here's-the-Ball-We-Don't-Want it, though even more than usual. Surely they can't beat Italy next Sunday. Unless they do a Chelsea.

I haven't watched Spanish TV for a long time but I tuned in tonight for the England-Ukraine game. And it was good to see that the verities are as eternal as ever. Before the game, there was minimal discussion, slotted in between endless adverts; at half time there was nothing but ads; and as soon as the ref. blew the final whistle there were yet more ads. Oh, and the commentators before the game also broke off from their pronouncements to promote the sponsors' products. It'll be a while before I watch any more.

The euro: Well, the Monday morning euphoria lasted only a couple of hours and shares came down as quickly as they'd gone up. But the news on the street tonight is that Mrs. Merkel is softening her line and that enough funds may be made available to finance a firewall for both Spain and Italy. I, for one, will believe it when I see it. Even though logic dictates that she will.

As we wait on this, why not enjoy some wine from Galicia? The one cited here sells for 8 euros here in Spain, say 6.40 pounds. Which makes it 56% more expensive in the UK. Good health!

7 comments:

Gerald Kelly said...

Hello Colin, just thought I'd send you a comment. I lived in Pontevedra in 1987-89, and I chanced upon your blog a couple of years ago, while taking an electronic trip down Memory Lane. I enjoy reading your posts (and not just the ones about Pontevedra/Galicia/Spain) and I think you write really well. Thank you.

Colin said...

Thank-you, Gerald. It was extremely kind of you to write and I much appreciate it. Best wishes.

Gerald Kelly said...

I was teaching English in a school in Calle Cruz Gallastegui, and I lived in Calle de los Herreros. I was young, free and single, and new to Galicia (though not new to Spain; I'd lived in Catalunya for 6 months before). Pontevedra made me fall in love with Galicia/Spain; food, language, attitude to life and so on. Best 2.5 years of my life! And I would go and live there again tomorrow, given half the chance.

Colin said...

Posh place to work.

Yes, I love life in Pontevedra and was very happy to arrive back a couple of days ago. Especially as the sun was shining. Which it isn't doing at the moment. But at least it's warm!.

Colin said...

I endorse the recommendation of Christopher Booker's "The Great Deception".

Azra said...

Our President, Jacob Zuma, has just pledged 2 Billion US Dollars from SA Reserves along with the USD +50 Billion pledged from other BRIC members at the G20 summit in Los Cabos, Mexico. Of course, he's getting a lot of flak on this side - many feeling that the 3rd world making promises to save the 1st world is ludicrous and that many 1st world countries are a thousand times better off than many of our regions.

Some do see it as a strategic move - like he's trying to show the world that SA has the clout or something like that - which is most likely the truth. And then there is a third, more rational opinion - that in the greater scheme of things, we need to save Europe to save ourselves (since SA's economy will certainly be put through the ringer if Europe goes down, as most of the world will too) - this is partially the reason too. But my guess is that he likes playing with the Big boys more than anything else.

Colin said...

@Azra. I think your third view is most probable. If Europe goes down the plughole, the rest of the world will follow it, in whole or in part. There's no altruism involved here.

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