Thursday, January 12, 2017

Pontevedra Pensées: 12.1.17

Having written of the long-standing failure to acknowledge any degree of government guilt for national disasters, I should cite this article about a very belated admission of responsibility for the crash of a military plane almost 14 years ago. That said, it's noteworthy that the Minister of Defence stressed that this acknowledgement was "symbolic" and "did not have financial or criminal consequences" as the victims have already been compensated by insurance firms. Handy, that.

The Spanish are generous when it comes to bequeathing body parts. So, it's not surprising that the country has become a world leader as regards organ transplants. Click here for more on this very commendable development.

And click here if you want to see The Local's list of the Unesco World Heritage Sites around Spain.  Which might well be a re-publication. On both of our parts.

As everyone knows, Spain was once one of the most Catholic countries in the modern world, not having experienced a Reformation. The peak of her - apparent? - Catholicity came under Franco, whom the Church endorsed and supported to the hilt and for which it effectively received reciprocal state-imposed compulsion. Things have certainly changed since 1976, for example in the realm of Church marriage ceremonies. In a word, not many folk opt for these any more. Some statistics here.

The latest drip in the Chinese water torture of austerity measures looks like being much-increased prescription charges for 'pensioners who can afford them'. Not a bad principle, you might say. Indeed, but it doesn't apply - for example - to utility bills. Here, low users like me subsidise not only high users but also the wealthy 'large families' who get automatic discounts on these. And even on their groceries at supermarkets. And I can't see this changing, however bad the economic situation and however great the pressure from Brussels for more savings and/or greater government revenue. 

I've seen reports of kamikaze drivers in other parts of Spain in the last few days - people who accidentally or deliberately drive the wrong way down an autovia. I'm almost relieved these are aren't confined to Galicia. Though we do seem to have a disproportionate percentage of them.

Trump: What on earth can one say after yesterday's performance? Do the evangelists who supported him en masse yet see him as the Antichrist? After watching, mouth agape, last night, I recalled the comment of an American friend some years ago:- You have to remember that the USA is so large and complex that is has both the very best and the very worst of everything in the world. Amen to that.

A propos . . .

A headline in today's Daily Telegraph: Oscar-winning actress Natalie Portman 'earned three-times less for film than co-star Ashton Kutcher'. Is the phrase 'earned one third of ' too difficult for today's readers of this once-great but now dumbed-down newspaper, I wonder? 

Finally . . .  Today's cartoon:-

Can anyone see any sort of pattern in these, I've asked myself.


Sierra said...

...and where are Lugo's City Wall and La Coruña's Tower of Hercules?

Sierra said...

Re: Kamikaze drivers - this is the best yet - 16kms on the A8 autovia:

Anthea said...

The benefits for "familias numerosas" must date back to Franco's time when they wanted to boost the population. Families of up to 15 or 16 children won prizes! Post WW2 France had a similar scheme.

paideleo said...

Cando vivía en Londres a maneira de chamar a un bus era prender un cigarro. En canto o prendías o bus aparecía.

Colin Davies said...

Xa xa xa

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