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Spanish Shilling

Some stories and experiences after a lifetime spent in Spain

It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Worst of Times
Saturday, April 13, 2024 @ 7:11 PM

Is it a case of sore losers, or of opportunities lost? Could it (possibly) be simple belief in their superior powers of management?

Would, in short, Spain be a better place with a conservative/far-right government than the current weak mix-and-match of Pedro Sánchez?

Judge with the examples of the regions of Castilla y León, Valencia, Extremadura and Aragón, where in some cases – inevitably – the tail wags the dog. The PP needs Vox just as the PSOE needs the lefties and the (sometimes rather trying) independence parties, who, in both the Basque Country and in Catalonia, will be faced with the inconvenient complication of being joined at the hip in the national government while at daggers drawn in the two upcoming elections.

This could end in tears as the PSOE will likely become obliged to choose one over the other, which is perhaps why Feijóo is calling for fresh national elections once again.

Even though there’s no doubt but that the Partido Popular (and Vox) will do terribly in both the coming Euskera and Catalunya elections.

Since the Spanish economy is doing well, the opposition must find alternate reasons to harass the Government.

Corruption is a good place to start, but it is a two-edged sword. Right now (as two leading ex-ministers of José María Aznar - Rodrigo Rato and Eduardo Zaplana are coincidentally facing massive prison sentences), they are voting against the Government’s tactic of the amnesty for the Catalonian illegal referendum of 2017 from their majority presence in the Senate.

Bulos, or fake news are a popular alternative. Take poor Begoña Gómez, who gets a pasting from The Objective (a conservative news-site). A recent headline reads: ‘The Government hides the amount of a subsidy in the name of Begoña Gómez’. The photo shows Pedro Sánchez and his wife, Begoña Gómez. Good stuff. The site, however, later admits that the issue is with another woman entirely, who simply shares the same name. The same fake-news headline also made it to Telemadrid (which later, briefly, apologised) and even the floor of the Parliament.

Generally speaking, the conservatives have the support – more or less – of the private media, the judiciary, the church and the military, but not so much of the voters (evidently) and most foreign observers.

Charles Dickens could have been writing about Spain in 2024: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times; it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness; it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness; it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair”.

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