Sunday, May 25, 2014

The EU election here and there; More Catalan madness; Dr numbers; & Groupthink.

We await news of the percentage of voters who went to the urns here in Spain to vote in the European Parliament elections. In the 25 years since they did this for the first time, participation has fallen every year. Given the Brussels-imposed austerity of the last few years, it'll be astonishing if this doesn't happen this time round

Listening to UK politicians dealing with the results of Thursday's local elections, what was increasingly clear was the reluctance to admit they can't take the measures required by the electorate and that this is because they're constrained by the EU. In other words, they're impotent. And so redundant. As long as the UK stays in the EU, they should be replaced, if at all, by more civil servants to implement the laws made - in a way no one understands - in Brussels and Strasbourg. But they won't be.

In a move designed to infuriate Madrid - and perhaps many Catalans - the Catalan president has sought formal association with the Francophone world. If granted, this would oblige his government to favour French over English in schools. This is something which fell out of favour here in Spain at least 30 years ago. Worse, he didn't even tell the Spanish President he was doing it. It'll be fascinating to see how the Paris plays this. And how Madrid reacts.

Looking at a list of countries with a high proportion of doctors to people, I saw the name Niue. At first I thought this might be the Spanish acronym for the UAE but obviously not. Resorting to Wikipedia, I learnt that Niue is an island country in the Pacific Ocean, 2,400 km northeast of New Zealand. Its land area is 260 square km and its population is around 1,400. Anyway, the article stressed that this statistics differs by up to 50% between Spanish regions. In the UK, of course, it's not allowed to differ much between towns, otherwise the angry cry of 'postcode lottery' goes up.

I caught the last 15m minutes of the Champions' final last night, on the radio on the night train back to Pontevedra from Madrid. It took me a minute or three to work out that Bálé was, in fact, an Hispanicised Gareth Bale

Finally . . . An interesting commentary of modern groupthink.


Perry said...

Those affected do not think for themselves, but take on the belief-system of others.

(Insert any religion here.....................)

Perry said...


Dr North has a post about the UKIP results. LimpDems bled to death.

With ten out of twelve regions declared (see chart above), the state of play stands with UKIP on 23 seats and 27.5 percent of the vote, up 11 points on 2009.

The Lib-Dems are left with one seat, on 6.9 percent, down seven points - close to a wipe-out, having failed to salvage a seat from London.

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