Monday, April 15, 2013

Escraches are noisy demonstrations outside the homes and offices of politicians. Sometimes translated as 'pickets'. They've been increasingly in evidence over the past few weeks, as the Spanish populace gets ever angrier at the contrast between the austerity inflicted on them and the comfortable living of politicians who're all now assumed to be corrupt. Depressingly, said politicians are calling for new laws to render the activity illegal, with the number two in the governing PP party characterising the escraches as 'pure Naziism'. All of which suggests the PP party has a peculiar concept of both democracy and Naziism. Incidentally, a Spanish friend told me last night how surprised he'd been to find that the right-of-centre British Conservative party included people who aren't rich. Unlike said PP party.

Ken Loach is a great film-maker. And also a dedicated Thatcher hater. His conviction is that all current evils in the UK are down to her and that no blame can be laid at the door of anyone else – certainly not the power-crazed unions of the 70s – for what happened to the UK in the 80s. It must be comforting to have such a Manichean view of the world. Ken also seems to labour under the delusion – like many on the Left – that not only is the NHS a wonderful institution but also that it's still admired, even envied, around the world. Dream on, Ken. Perhaps his oddest view is that the 1945 Labour government didn't introduce socialist measures but merely 'government bureaucracy'. But, on reflection, perhaps he's got this one right.

I've happened upon an on-line paper called The Local, which provides news items in English, plus features such as the Top 10 Spanish Myths. Intriguingly, it says this of the tenth myth – that the Spanish are truly noisy - “OK, so this one's true.” They also have a list of ten Spanglish terms and I have to admit I didn't know office is used to mean a 'store'.

Talking of noise . . . I mentioned the other day the abatement measures the mayoress of Mojácar is trying to introduce. Now comes further evidence that some Spaniards are abandoning their famous live-and-let-live attitude. Up in the Galician city of Lugo, noise-averse residents are pushing to get the San Froilan festivities moved from their normal location, availing themselves of Roman laws for this purpose. Rather appropriately in a place surrounded by Roman walls. 

Spain's minister of finance has assured us he doesn't intend to increase taxes. None of us believe him but the President of the Socialist PSOE has gone public with his disbelief. He says that every time the minister has pledged not to increase taxes, he's done exactly that. Likewise, we foreigners don't believe that the government wants to know about overseas assets simply to catch Spaniards who've sent money offshore. 

Finally . . A migrant from Senegal seeking Spanish nationality has had this denied because he didn't know the name of the wife of former president Zapatero. Like any of us does!

Finally . . .Finally:-


  1. Has anyone decided on the best alternative to the about-to-disappear Google Reader?
  2. Do you like or dislike the about-to-be-compulsory new Compose in Gmail?
  3. Does anyone know how to upload multiple fotos as attachments?
  4. Has anyone else suffered the loss of some contacts as a consequence of using the new format? 


sp said...

I am using Feedly on phone and pc. It's slow and fiiddly (geddit?). I'm also trying Netvibes, which is even worse. I wish someone could just keep Reader going.
To upload multiple attachments just keep the shift key depressed and select as many as you want.

Diego said... might be an alternative.

Alfred B. Mittington said...

Sonsoles, you silly man. How could that Senegalese fellow not remember??

Yours as always Al

Perry said...

What ho! Skimmington time.

Gerald Kelly said...

Feedly is good on PC, I prefer Flipboard on my android phone... looks nicer, and you can include Facebook and Twitter too

Bill said...

I used Bloglines for several years before Google Reader started and although it has changed in the way it operates since those days, I still maintain my account there (with many of the subscriptions I have on Google Reader, but they do require updating) and I think I will end up relying upon it once more, failing something better coming along. The link to Bloglines is here for anyone who may be interested:

Bill said...

Another attempt at getting a clickable link to work:

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