Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable.
Christopher Howse: A Pilgrim in Spain
Note: As it's Thursday, a few of the items below have been borrowed from Lenox Napier's Business Over Tapas of yesterday.
- The saga of Franco's bones continues. As I've said, I'd just blow up the bloody mausoleum in which they currently reside and tell his appalling descendants to go fish.
- Lenox addresses the declining fortunes of the 'far-left' Podemos party, a victim of the resurgent PSOE socialist party.
- Disturbing news of widespread corruption in at least one top-flight football team.
- Is the new Madrid city administration really going to reverse the traffic restriction measures which have improved air quality there?
- Was the Catalan episode a rebellion (a coup d'etat, claims the prosecution) or 'merely' sedition. Time will tell and the world waits to see and assess Spanish justice.
- Life in Spain:-
Of course, you know that - despite my diligent attempts to avoid them - I got yet another fine a couple of weeks ago. As I said a year ago, effectively just another tax. Which reminds me . . .
2. It's income tax declaration time and I've been preparing mine. These days you can only do this on the internet in Spain and I've gone through the process of registering and getting my data from the Hacienda. How one does this seems to change every year and this time I had to enter both my NIE number and a supplementary number. There's no such number on the green A4 NIE certificate issued to non-Spanish EU residents these days, but it was in the top right hand corner of the residence card (tarjeta de residencia) which I neglected to turn in when it expired in 2011, 8 years ago. Which doesn't seem quite right. Though I was relieved to find it there as, otherwise I'd have had to try one of the other options, which experience suggests would not have been easy.
3. A warning re fraudulent cloning of your phone's SIM card.
- Richard North today: The current political environment is beginning to look more and more complex. The wonder is that anyone would want to be prime minister in such uncertain times. A sentiment I think I've expressed at least once.
- The EU's sea rescue operation would surely be more effective if it had some boats. 'Poisonous politics' means that it doesn't, says The Economist.
- What can one say about Fart's wreckage of a tour through the UK, Ireland and France? Best just to watch the US nightly satire shows. And shed tears. Some of them of laughter. Meanwhile . . .
- Word of the Day: Callejero.
- You might not be aware that the USA declared war on Spain in 1898 and, as a result, became a colonial power. Though most modern Americans might dispute this label, seeing themselves as 'exceptional'. Lenox has posted this interesting video on the event which - literally - sparked/inflamed the war. Which was truly disastrous for Spain.