(Spanish) Women: The owner of my regular tapas bar has a delightful daughter, Carolina, who comes in after school mid afternoon. Or 'before lunch' in Spanish terms. Here's a conversation that took place between us yesterday:
May I say you are looking very handsome today?
That's very kind of you.
De nada. Oh, by the way, I'm going on an end-of-term excursion soon and I have to raise the money for this. Would you like to buy some exotic soap?
And she's 12!
The US Primaries: I can't, of course, make sense of these but I thought this quote rather appropriate: As democracy is perfected, the office of the President represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day, the plain folks of the land will reach their hearts' desire at last, and the White House will be occupied by a downright fool and narcissistic moron - H L Mencken, 1920. With a HT to my friend Dwight for this. As he says: Almost there.
Animals in Spain: Some of these have a tough time - as in the Chuck-a-Duck fiesta I read about last week - but animal rights organisations are increasingly evident here. In Galicia, the Xunta has announced plans to ban all circuses involving animals, the cutting of tails and ears, and the putting-down (sacrificio) of dogs and cats in our urban pounds. All very commendable but one wonders what will happen to the (many) abandoned creatures which end up in these places. They'e already overflowing. Can't see the town councils being happy to pay for keeping them alive indefinitely. Unless it gives them another post-crisis chance to raise our taxes.
Mother's Day: Elsewhere in the world, this is today. So:-
- Yesterday, I cited this: God could not be everywhere and, therefore, he made mothers.
- Reader Rebrites responded with the excellent: Sox could not be everywhere; therefore God created Dads.
- I also enjoyed this cartoon in the Daily Telegraph, with its topical reference to the government's anti-Brexit campaign:
Low Corporate Tax Payments: Keeping it simple . . . How about taxing the likes of Google, Amazon and Facebook in the country with the highest rate and then divvying the income out to other countries according to the percentage of their total sales there? Just needs a bit of global cooperation. And a few minor details ironed out. Surely not too much to ask. Until something like this happens, the companies of the new economy will continue to run rings around the national tax authorities. An alternative simple solution - Keep the lawyers and kill all the accountants.
Finally . . . . Other Peoples' Money: Hammersmith and Fulham council spent £777,000 last year on “personal health plans” to help people to stop smoking and drinking and lose weight. So far 15 residents have cut down their boozing; six have lost weight and one whole person gave up smoking. As the columnist says . . . Sounds like money well spent.
An Outist letter to the Daily Telegraph yesterday:
SIR – Mr Cameron is right: being in the EU will give Britain certainty.
It is certain that some EU members’ national interests will always be put before collective responsibilities. It is certain that the Common Agricultural Policy will always be run for the benefit of French farmers. British fisheries will never be run in the interests of British fishermen.
There will never be an effective EU defence force. It is certain that the euro will collapse, sooner or later. The vested interests within the EU will certainly push for ever-closer union.
It is certain that by staying in the EU the people of Britain will lose: their sovereignty; their standing in the world financially; and control of their history and traditions, their pride and independence.