Friday, March 03, 2017

Pontevedra Pensées: 3.3.17

Not only in Spain, then. The British government has spent €330m building an airport on the island of St Elena in the south Atlantic, where no large plane will ever be able to land because of the permanently treacherous crosswinds. It reminds me of my favourite cartoon: The Chinese emperor, surrounded by Mongols, asking a shamefaced builder: When I asked you to build the great wall of China, couldn't you have checked what side they were on before you finished it? Wiki puts it this way, en passant: The airport's opening was due in May 2016, but it was announced in June 2016 that it had been delayed indefinitely due to high winds and wind shear.

It's reported that Britain is seeking to have Spain as its ally in the imminent talks on the Brexit. Seems odd on the surface. It's down to tourism and trade, it says here.

For aficionados of Spanish politics, this article asks whether the far-left Podemos party has blown its chances, having fallen foul of the fractional fights which distinguish purer-than-thou parties at that end of the spectrum.

Descendents of the Jews expelled from Spain in 1492 are not seeking Spanish citizenship in anything like the numbers they're doing in Portugal. So Madrid has scrapped the language test. I imagine they'll be paying them to come here next, given the population decline in Spain.

Which reminds me . . .

Foreigners are leaving Galicia in large numbers. We're 20% down on the 2007 pre-crash number. Most of these, I suspect, have gone back to South America. The percentage of Chinese has bucked the trend and risen from 2 to 3%. We Brits represent only 2% of the total. So it wouldn't make much difference if Modelo 720 drove all of us out of the country. The EU has just confirmed that the penalties under this 2012 law are illegal. But that won't make much difference to its application for at least 10 years. The Spanish know how to play Brussels games.

My thanks to reader Sierra for this video of John Oliver shedding a light on the abominable US tele-evangelists I mentioned yesterday. I've seen several of Oliver's shows but not this one. It reminded me that for many months I'd kept notes on a Financial Bible show which had disgusted me beyond measure, given its obviously fraudulent nature and its targeting of the gullible poor. When you watch the video, keep asking yourself how it can be legal. Actually, there's no need to; the question will raise itself frequently. I wish I had the faith to believe these people would burn in Hell. By the way, more than 80% of Americas evangelists voted for Trump whom they see as God-sent. So, not just poor and gullible. Or even desperate.

Here's a useful blog/page for optimists. It details how pessimists have treated every new invention in the past. In this case the 'dangerous' bicycle.

Finally . . . Another Private Eye cartoon, of possible relevance to something above:-

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