Thursday, May 15, 2014

A Political murder; Taxes; The EU; Clapping; & Telefonica


The murder of the Presidenta of the León Province by a disgruntled mother is throwing up some interesting questions: How did the murderer get hold of 2 handguns from a drug addict in Galicia?; Why was there a kilo and a half of marijuana in her house?; Did she really have 6 abortive attempts to shoot her victim?; and was her husband having an affair with the politician? The latter rumour has yet to make the media - possibly because he's the chief of police - but a Spanish friend swears it's common knowledge.

When I first came to Spain, there was a wealth tax (Patrimonio) which hit everyone with a relatively small amount of (declared) capital. This was abolished by the PSOE government during the boom years and then brought back - with a much higher base - by the PP government a couple of years ago. Now it's been announced that the Patrimonio is to be re-scrapped and replaced as a source of income by an increase in municipal taxes (the IBI). I may be wrong but I suspect this is the opposite of what's recommended by the new economic guru, the Frenchman Thomas Pikkety. He abhors the growing gap between the very rich and the rest of us and suggests they be subjected to wealth taxes. Spain is different.

Folk in each EU country were asked to respond to the question: Our country could better face the future outside the EU: Only Cyprus and the UK had a majority who agreed with this. Spain's populace didn't of course, by a long way. The numbers:-
Agree:      UK 47 Spain 23 Cyprus 51 EU average 32
Disagree: UK 41 Spain 60  Cyprus 43 EU average 58
Britain is different.

I attended a concert by the Pontevedra concert last night. Very enjoyable but I do get tired with all the semi-compulsory clapping at the end of the evening. Surely the technology is available for a 'clapometer' on the back of the seat in front of you, so you can use a knob to give the volume of applause merited.

Finally . . . Since I continue to get internet cuts, you can imagine how pleased I was to see that Telefónica has 4 executives in the top 30 best paid in the country. More than anyone else, of course. Worth every penny. At least if you're a shareholder, rather than a customer. Takes me right back to the bad old days of BT.

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