Monday, November 19, 2018

Thoughts from Hamburg, Germany: 19.1.18

Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable.
- Christopher Howse: A Pilgrim in Spain. 

If you've arrived here because of an interest in Galicia or Pontevedra, see my web page
here. Garish but informative.

Matters German
  • My host – who is half English/half German - went to Cologne at the weekend, for a family get-together. This morning he commented that it was all very enjoyable, even though they'd all demonstrated 'German humour'. I have to confess that discussion with him didn't shed an awful lot of light on this (potentially fascinating) observation. Essentially, he said, while they did laugh a lot, they didn't initiate much. But, as he's a determined 'initiator', I feel his comment might be a tad unfair to his relatives.
Matters Spanish
  • More news about this government's revision of their predecessors' crazy policy on solar energy.
  • And here's some corporate news from DQ that might interest one or two readers.
  • A funny feminist form of anti-Francoist protest.
The EU/Brexit
  • As expected: Europe’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, has raised the prospect of the UK remaining under EU control until the end of 2022, by extending the Brexit transition for 2 years from the current end 2020.
  • En passant, the British government prefers to call this 2-4 years time-frame, the ' implementation period', not the 'transition period'. Possibly wishful labelling. 
  • Neither term will be relevant if the British parliament – as is very likely - rejects the deal currently on the table and nothing is done to stop the UK crashing out of the EU next March.
  • I'm still betting on a second referendum, rather than the Conservative government simply announcing they'll go along with majority sentiment and withdraw the exit, or a general election bringing in an equally conflicted Labour party. Whose leader laughingly suggested yesterday he could negotiate a better deal than Mrs May. A man whose never negoatiated anything in his life.
The USA
  • Here's a nice article on a book entitled “In the Shadows of the American Century: The Rise and Decline of US Global Power. Great empire, little minds is the catchy headline – a comment of Edmund Burke's. About the British.
© [David] Colin Davies 

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