Saturday, November 30, 2013

Fascism v Democracy; Corruption; Bang goes a Caixa; Pontevedra; & Postmodernism.

In its backlong rush toward fascism, the PP government has announced plans to introduce a raft of fines for showing "disrespect towards Spain". Worse, these are to be handed out not by the courts, after some form of trial, but by the police and the Civil Guard. Now we really do need a revolution. Or a campaign of mass insults. Flash disrespects.

Meanwhile, over in the UK , the electors in one parliamentary constituency have voted to oust their MP. This is a democratic development which would beyond belief in Spain, where the voters have no say in either the appointment or dismissal of their representatives, who are party nominees at the top of a list of same.

It's at times like this I can understand Spanish friends who hold a fanatical view that the UK is a vastly superior place to Spain. Whereas I think it's the other way round. But am weakening.

You don't have to wait too long in modern Spain for the next corruption bus to come along. Indeed, they often come in threes or more. The latest local case involves the imputation of the mayoress and planning officer of Sanxenxo. This has often been called "the Marbella of Galicia" but I suspect it wasn't the notorious corruption of the latter people had in mind. Though they might do know.

Nationally, the big new-ish case is that of the huge UGT Union, which has been making free with invoices so as to get its pockets on EU subventions. I wonder whether folk in Brussels ever realised just how little resistance Spanish money handlers have. And how sticky their palms are.

I went to a concert in town last night, though I almost didn't. Fooled by the foto of the orchestra, I went to the wrong venue and only got to the right one with a minute to go. As I arrived at the table where I could get a ticket, I was greeted by name by the President of the Pontevedra Philharmonic Society, whom I don't know. I was impressed by this but later thought it wouldn't be too difficult to remember the name of the only foreigner in the Society, especially as he bears one very familiar to lovers of classical music. The evening, by the way, was held under the joint aegis of the Society and the Social arm of the NovoCaixaGalicia Bank. This was a first such collaboration and it was a great success. But it was also a sign of the times, since it's certain that the Bank has had reduce its spend on social causes.

Incidentally, this is the bank that's being sold by the government to either a Spanish or a foreign bidder. More likely the former now, as onerous (EU illegal?) conditions have been imposed on foreign suitors.

I missed this page from the items on Pontevedra I posted this morning. Scroll down if you want to see these.

I said in the earlier post that I had a very busy morning. This included the English class I give to two young ladies. Finding myself behind time, I had to rush my coffee, miss out one or two normal activities (Family Guy, for example) and hasten across the bridge into town. I arrived 10 minutes late, just as the first young lady was arriving. The second polled up 30 minutes later. All of which questions my use of the word "late".

Finally . . . If you ever find yourself wondering what Postmodernism is, you should stop. For now the question is What was Postmodernism? Here's an article with the answer.


JG said...

“It's at times like this I can understand Spanish friends who hold a fanatical view that the UK is a vastly superior place to Spain”

It’s really not. I’ve been to Spain a couple of times this year- to Galicia and Barcelona- and have been struck as usual at how the day-to-day life in Spain is so much more pleasant- the quality of chat, the independent shops, the million cafes, the menus del dia, the equality between old and young...of course some of that is down to the tourist’s rose-tinted glasses, but I worked and lived in Madrid, albeit back in the eighties, so I’ve got a bit of perspective. Politically of course things sound pretty bad and the UK is probably better in the sense of democratic accountability- but the UK, despite recent political horror shows, is better than most places when it comes down to fundamental democracy.

As for Family Guy- great show. So dare I mention that...Brian’s dead?

Anonymous said...


Possibly he thought you were THE (Sir) Colin Davies and didn't know he had "passed".

When you say "I can understand Spanish friends who hold a fanatical view that the UK is a vastly superior place to Spain. Whereas I think it's the other way round"

Have missed out on the reasons Spain is superior. I hereby formally request a refresher course.


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