Home » Posts tagged 'madrid'

Tag Archives: madrid

Olduvai
Click on image to purchase

Olduvai III: Catacylsm
Click on image to purchase

Post categories

Europe Will Reap What Spain Has Sown

Europe Will Reap What Spain Has Sown

Europe Will Reap What Spain Has Sown

The Spanish government decided to reach back into its history and borrow from the playbook of longtime Spanish fascist dictator Francisco Franco in dealing with Catalonia’s decision to declare independence from the Spanish Kingdom as the Republic of Catalonia. The Catalan government’s decision to declare independence followed an October 1 referendum in the region that resulted in a “yes” for independence.

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, whose Popular Party is a direct political descendant of Franco’s fascist Falangist Party, wasted no time in invoking, for the first time, Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution, which allows the Spanish Kingdom to impose direct rule on regions not adhering to the whiplashing from Madrid. Catalonia is the first, but possible not the last victim, of Spain’s neo-fascism on display for the entire world.

During the Spanish Civil War, the Catalans and Basques fought with bravery on behalf of the Spanish Second Republic against the fascist forces of Franco and his fascists. Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini provided all-out support for Franco, much like the European Union, NATO, and the United States have fully backed Rajoy in his confrontation with Catalonia. Spain’s King Felipe VI October 3 speech, in which he condemned the Catalan referendum’s pro-independence results, was seen by many Catalans, as well as other groups like the Basques, Galicians, and Andalusians, as an unnecessary involvement in politics. Not only Catalans, but others across Spain, began calling for the scrapping of the Bourbon family’s monarchy and the establishment of the Spanish Third Republic. The Bourbons have little respect among the working peoples of Spain and France. After all, it was an ancestor of Felipe VI, Louis XVI of France, who lost his head to a French revolutionary guillotine after ignoring the poverty of the French people.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Devolution everywhere: Spain, Italy, Britain and the problems of complexity

Devolution everywhere: Spain, Italy, Britain and the problems of complexity

The narrative about Catalan independence is that two major cities, Madrid and Barcelona, are competing for power, and one has decided that the best path forward is to declare independence from Spain and free itself of Madrid’s dominance.

There is certainly something to this narrative. As CNN reports:

Catalonia accounts for nearly a fifth of Spain’s economy, and leads all regions in producing 25% of the country’s exports.

It contributes much more in taxes (21% of the country’s total) than it gets back from the government.

Independence supporters have seized on the imbalance, arguing that stopping transfers to Madrid would turn Catalonia’s budget deficit into a surplus.

Catalonia has a proven record of attracting investment, with nearly a third of all foreign companies in Spain choosing the regional capital of Barcelona as their base.

But the spread of independence-seeking across Europe points to something more than just sibling rivalry. In 2016 British voters shocked the world by voting narrowly to withdraw from the European Union (EU). Just this month two of Italy’s richest regions held non-binding referendums on seeking increased autonomy from the central government. More than 95 percent of those voting said yes.

The immediate effects of Britain withdrawing from the EU and of Catalonia becoming independent (if, in fact, either actually ends up happening) could be quite negative economically, cutting both off from established trade arrangements that power their economies. (The vague desire for more autonomy among the provinces of Veneto and Lombardy in Italy does not yet spell economic and political divorce.)

Given this outcome, why would the people of Britain and Catalonia seek to disconnect from central authorities? For Britain perhaps the impetus was that most of the people of Britain did not feel they were sharing in the prosperity generated by the country’s affiliation with the EU.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Catalan Separatists Warn “The Moment Has Come” As Puigdemont Suddenly Cancels Parliament Appearance

Catalan Separatists Warn “The Moment Has Come” As Puigdemont Suddenly Cancels Parliament Appearance

In a sudden, and perhaps ominous, last minute change, the First Minister of Catalonia, Carles Puigdemont, will now not travel to Madridon Thursday evening to appear before the Senate, and has brought forward the Catalan Parliament plenary session to vote on a response to Madrid’s application of Article 155.

Just hours after a PP spokesman confirmed that elections are no longer enough to stop Article 155 process to suspend home rule in Catalonia, El Pais reports, Catalan president Carles Puigdemont won’t appear before the Senate Thursday, citing unidentified people in PDeCAT party in the Congress.

The Catalan Parliament plenary session is now to start Thursday, and will vote response to application of article 155 of the Spanish constitution.

Bloomberg also reports that Catalan Separatists tell supporters that “the moment has come,” to “defend the republic.”

If You Want to Understand the Next 10 Years, Study Spain

If You Want to Understand the Next 10 Years, Study Spain

Some of you may be confused as to why a U.S. citizen living in Colorado has become so completely obsessed with what’s going on in Spain. Bear with me, there’s a method to my madness.

I believe what’s currently happening in Spain represents a crucial microcosm for what we’ll see sweep across the entire planet over the next ten years. Some of you will want to have a discussion about who’s right and who’s wrong in this particular affair, but that’s besides the point. It doesn’t matter which side you favor, what matters is that Madrid/Catalonia is an example of the forces of centralization duking it out with forces of decentralization.

Madrid represents the nation-state as we know it, with its leaders claiming Spain is forever indivisible according to the constitution. Madrid has essentially proclaimed there’s no possible avenue to independence from a centralized Spain even if various regions decide in large number they wish to be independent. This sort of attitude will be seen as unacceptable and primitive by increasingly large numbers of humans in the years ahead. Catalonia should be seen as a canary in the coal mine. The forces of decentralization are rising, but entrenched centralized institutions and the bureaucrats running them will become increasingly terrified, panicked and oppressive.

As I’ve discussed, this isn’t coming out of nowhere. Humanity’s current established centralized institutions and nation-states have become clownishly corrupt, merely existing to protect and enrich the powerful/connected as opposed to benefiting the population at large. As such, legitimacy has been shattered and people have begun to demand a new way. Whether we see this with the rising popularity of Bitcoin, or the UK decision to leave the EU, evidence is everywhere and we’ve already passed the point of no return. This is precisely why EU leaders are rallying around Madrid. They’re scared to death and fear they might be next. They’re probably right.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Spain Won’t Arrest Separatist Leaders, Blames “Fake News” For Catalan Crisis 

Spain Won’t Arrest Separatist Leaders, Blames “Fake News” For Catalan Crisis 

Following Catalan President Puigdemont’s address yesterday accusing Madrid of “the worst attack since Franco,” the Spanish government has urged Catalonians to accept direct control from Madrid and ignore seditious instructions from the pro-independence leaders.

Spanish Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis responded on Sunday with the call to obey Madrid.

“We are going to establish the authorities who are going to rule the day-to-day affairs of Catalonia according to the Catalan laws and norms … I hope everyone will disregard whatever instructions they will be planning to give because they will not have the legal authority to do that.

“All the government is trying to do, and reluctantly, is to reinstate the legal order, to restore the constitution but also the Catalan rules and proceed from there,” Dastis told BBC TV.

“We are not going to arrest anyone.”

Of course, Dastis could not help himself but fall back on the establishment’s ‘excuse du jour’ for anything that does not fit with the maintenance of the status quo… “There has been a lot of alternative facts and fake news”

Below are details of the powers the Spanish government plans to assume for a maximum six months before regional elections are held as set out in a proposal to the upper house Senate. As Reuters reports, the measures were formulated under a constitutional provision never before invoked in Spain’s 40 years of democracy.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Madrid Threatens Imprisonment & Death to Catalonia Leaders?

The Spanish Government is clearly fascist and cannot escape that stigma. The day before the appearance of Carles Puigdemont in front of the regional parliament of Catalonia, the Madrid government has come out and warned of serious bodily threats that one would expect only from a dictator – not an elected democratic government. Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s spokesperson, Pablo Casado, came out and rejected all calls for any dialogue in Madrid with Catalonia. “We will not give in, and there is nothing to negotiate with the putschists,” said Casado.

Casados boldly stated publicly: “Anyone who declares it (independence) will end up like the one who declared it 83 years ago.” In Spanish history back in 1934, Lluís Companys i Jover (1882-1940) was the head of  Catalonia’s government, which proclaimed itself as an independent state back then as well. He and the entire regional government were arrested after a few hours by the Spanish army. He was exiled to France in 1939 but would not leave because his son was seriously ill. In 1940, Companys was captured and was handed over by the Nazi Gestapo to the dictator Francisco Franco (1939-1975). He was executed in Barcelona at 6:30 a.m. on October 15, 1940 for seeking Catalonian Independence. Lluís  refused to wear a blindfold, and was taken before a firing squad of Civil Guards barefoot. When they fired, his last words were ‘Per Catalunya!’ (For Catalonia!). Keep in mind that people were imprisoned for even speaking Catalonia’s language.

More than 90% of voters in Catalonia voted for a separation from Spain BECAUSE of Rajoy’s dictatorial attitude. Here is a banknote from the last independence movement from our collection of the World Monetary System. The opponents of Independence, who had boycotted the vote by a majority, went to the streets of Barcelona on Sunday to protest against the separation.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Madrid Gives Catalonia 5 Day Ultimatum To Clarify If It Declared Independence

Madrid Gives Catalonia 5 Day Ultimatum To Clarify If It Declared Independence

With Spain’s prime minister having opened earlier in the day the path for Madrid to use a constitutional “nuclear option” to suspend Catalonia’s autonomy, demanding that the regional government makes clear whether it considers itself independent, moments ago Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy gave Catalan President Carles Puigdemont a five day ultimatum to clarify whether he actually declared the region’s independence in his speech devoted to the highly controversial referendum, and another 3 to “rectify it.”

The news comes after Rajoy said earlier on Wednesday that the cabinet of ministers asked for clarification on the issue of autonomous region’s independence.  As reported earlier, Rajoy decided to take the first step towards triggering Article 155 of the Spanish constitution, which would give Madrid previously unused powers to take control of Catalonia’s regional government, after an emergency cabinet meeting on Wednesday.

Rajoy said his formal request for clarity was “necessary when activating Article 155” and would dictate the next steps in the crisis to “offer certainty to the citizens”.

Using Article 155 to suspend Catalan autonomy would deepen the constitutional crisis in Spain since Catalonia held a contested referendum on independence on October 1. Spain’s government says Catalonia’s independence drive is unconstitutional.

The prime minister also said that the “illegal referendum”  has failed, adding that Catalan authorities lack the legitimacy to propose a unilateral declaration of independence. He underlined that the vote undermines our democracy, Spanish unity and the Statute of Catalonia.

Meanwhile, as AP reports, there were signs that the government was trying to take some steps to de-escalate the situation. Pedro Sanchez, the head of the opposition socialists, said on Wednesday that his party and the ruling centre-right PP party had agreed to talks to renegotiate laws governing regional autonomy.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Rajoy Boxed In With Losing Options: Catalonia Suspends Independence Declaration, Posts Guards at Parliament, Seeks Mediation

Rajoy Boxed In With Losing Options: Catalonia Suspends Independence Declaration, Posts Guards at Parliament, Seeks Mediation 

The Catalan parliament met Tuesday afternoon. Catalonia president Carles Puigdemont asked parliament to suspend the effects of Catalonia voting “yes” for independence to hold talks with Spain.

However, Puigdemont still maintains the legality of the October 1 referendum in Catalonia, stating Catalans had “won their right to become an independent country.”

For now, Puigdemont seeks dialogue with Madrid.

Catalonia Suspends Declaration of Independence

The Independent reports Catalonia Suspends Declaration of Independence From Spain

The Catalan government has said it is suspending its declaration of independence from Spain and wants to de-escalate the tension in the country.

Premier Carles Puigdemont made the announcement in a highly-anticipated speech to the regional parliament in Barcelona where he said he would seek to enter into negotiations with the Spanish government to move the case for independence forward.

The Catalan leader maintained the legality of the October 1 referendum in Catalonia, and said Catalans had “won their right to become an independent country” but said he will first seek to open a dialogue with Madrid.

CNBC reports Puigdemont Asks Parliament to Suspend Results of Independence Referendum.

Puigdemont said in a speech Tuesday the current relationship between Catalonia and Spain is unsustainable. He asked for parliament to suspend the effects of Catalonia voting “yes” for independence to hold talks with Spain.

Catalan police have been posted outside parliament in Barcelona, sealing off the grounds to the public.

Delay Move Expected

This move is exactly as many expected. A declaration of independence would have triggered article 155 with Spain sending in military police or army troops.

Last evening Eurointelligence commented:

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

“A Civil War Is Coming” – EU Commissioner Urges Madrid & Barcelona To Talk

“A Civil War Is Coming” – EU Commissioner Urges Madrid & Barcelona To Talk

The EU’s budget commissioner has warned of the risk of “civil war” in Catalonia, as fears grew over a looming independence declaration and major banks prepared to relocate their headquarters.

With just 48 hours until Catalonia’s Parliament meets, defying Madrid, to debate secession, Gunther Oettinger, the Germany EU commissioner urged dialogue…

“The position is very, very alarming. Civil war is conceivable there, in the middle of Europe,” he began.

”One can only hope that a conversation will be made between Madrid and Barcelona soon,” he continued, adding that the EU could only mediate talks “if asked.”

The German commissioner’s startling remarks prompted disquiet among EU diplomats. One told VOA he thought the comments “nonsense.”

What would Spain lose if Catalonia becomes independent?

Independence for Catalonia has been a long time coming…

As VOA reports, Oettinger and the EU Commission, the European bloc’s governing body, which fears Catalan independence might stir up separatism elsewhere in Europe, have also urged the authorities in Madrid and Barcelona to start negotiations and to avoid further provocations.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Madrid Waged Cyber-War & Catalonia Votes Overwhelmingly to Leave Spain

Catalonia voted overwhelmingly to secede from Spain. Of course, the hard line invasion of riot police who beat and threatened the people discouraged many from showing up with the turnout being only 43%. The fascist government in Spain has demonstrated to the entire world that there is a major country risk in dealing with Spain. Any government that uses force against democracy will do whatever it takes to sustain power as the economy gets wose going into 2021.

Hundreds of people were injured by riot police attempting to prevent voting, and this has only caused outrage and further protests solidifying the resolve to separate from such a fascist government. Both Canada and Britain allowed separatist votes. Why Spain deemed the vote illegal was clear that they knew they would vote to leave.

Madrid even waged a cyber-war against Catalonia. They sought to shut down the internet and even ordered Google to shut down traffic coming from Catalonia. Madrid has shown the future civil war tactic will be to shut down the internet to prevent communication.

Catalonia’s parliament may well now declare independence; Madrid could decide to impose direct rule on the region and the police have been transformed into terrorists resembling the imported Russian police in Ukraine. Barcelona is perhaps the most beautiful city in Europe. Obviously, Madrid will be off the tourist agenda in the years ahead.

Dark Days Ahead for Catalonia

Dark Days Ahead for Catalonia

It isn’t just about what happens on Sunday; it’s about the ensuing days and weeks.

The next 72 hours could be crucial not only for Catalonia, but also for the rest of Spain and Europe. For now, the cards are overwhelmingly stacked in Madrid’s favor. The central government enjoys the outward support of all European institutions, key Western partners and has the full power of the law on its side as well as the full arsenal of state repression at its disposal.

After confiscating millions of ballot slips and thousands of ballot boxes, and launching what Wikileaks’ Julian Assange has termed the “world’s first Internet War” against Catalonia, freezing telecommunications links, occupying telecoms buildings and censoring hundreds of websites, the Rajoy administration has made it logistically difficult, if not impossible, for the region to hold a credible referendum.

Spain’s constitutional court even went so far as to ask Google to shut down the app that allows Catalans to see where they have to vote on Sunday. Even the two main civil associations behind Catalonia’s push for independence have begun to tamp down expectations, conceding that the police operations have made it “very difficult” to hold a meaningful vote.

Now, all the government in Madrid has to do is sit back, watch and enjoy as the referendum’s organizers struggle to achieve a turnout even close to that of the purely symbolic consultation it held on November 9, 2014. Then, on Monday or Tuesday, Rajoy, with a small dose of humility, can launch political negotiations with Catalonia’s representatives from a position of strength.

But he probably won’t.

The Spanish government’s strategy so far has been to use the full extent of Spanish law to crush each and every attempt by Catalonia’s independence movement and regional government to organize this vote. It’s unlikely to stop now, when it’s winning.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Barcelona Threatens to Print Parrallel Currency, Madrid Seethes

Barcelona Threatens to Print Parrallel Currency, Madrid Seethes

Over the next six months, Barcelona’s left-wing city council plans to roll out a cash-less local currency that has the potential to become the largest of its kind in the world. The main goal of the project, according to a council spokesperson, is to boost economic opportunities for local businesses and traders.

The idea is for local stores and residents to be able to exchange euros for the new currency at a one-to-one parity, and use it to purchase products and services at a discount or with other kinds of incentives. But it doesn’t end there: the new parallel currency may also be used to pay certain subsidies, taxes and local services such as public transport, reports El País. Municipal workers could also receive part of their salary in the new money.

Barcelona will not be the first European city to launch such a scheme. Local currencies are all the rage these days. There could be as many as 3,000 forms of local money in use around the globe, says Community Currencies in Action, a global partnership promoting such schemes that is part-funded by the European Union’s Regional Development Fund. Which begs the question…

Why’s the EU promoting parallel local currencies around the world?

According to the official blurb, it is to support local small and medium-size enterprises (SME) as well as offer new tools for social inclusion and environmental protection. This comes from an organization that has so far shown scant regard for SMEs [read… Small Businesses Dread the Wrath of US-EU “Free Trade” Deal], social inclusion and environmental protection (read this and this).

Perhaps there are somewhat less altruistic motives behind the EU’s agenda — motives such as encouraging people to embrace cashless currencies. As I warned in The War on Cash in 10 Spine-Chilling Quotes, the war on cash has moved from one of words to actions.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Thousands of pro-independence protesters rally in Barcelona ahead of Catalan elections

Thousands of pro-independence protesters rally in Barcelona ahead of Catalan elections

© Albert Gea

A massive pro-independence demonstration in Barcelona, Spain drew thousands of people on Friday just two days before parliamentary elections in Catalonia. The Catalan president has promised to break with Spain in “18 months to 2 years” in case of a win.

Huge crowds waving red-and-yellow flags with a white star on a blue triangular – esteladas – filled the streets of Barcelona to show their commitment to Catalan independence, pictures posted on social media showed.

As the mass rally was taking place in Catalonia, Spain’s ruling conservative Popular Party (PP) issued a video in which its senior members, including Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, called on Catalans to reject the move.

“United we will win,” Rajoy said in Catalan.

Parliamentary elections will be held in Catalonia on Sunday. Supporters of Catalan independence regard the vote as a form of independence referendum. They are counting on a decisive victory for the “Junts pel Sí” (“Together for yes”) coalition that advocates secession for the region.

“Clearly, if we get a majority of the votes on September 27, then that’s the referendum done,” Artur Mas, Catalonia’s President said on Wednesday. He also promised to declare independence in 18 months to two years if the “Junts pel Sí” movement wins at the polls.

 

Mas also warned Madrid that Catalonia, which is Spain’s richest region, producing about one fifth of its entire GDP, will not help Spain pay off its debts if it blocks the referendum on Catalan independence.

“If it does not make an agreement with Catalonia, how will Spain be able to pay back its debts, which will rise to 120 percent of its output, while it loses the most productive part of its economy?” he asked.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

Spain Defense Minister Warns Army May Intervene Unless “Catalonia Obeys The Rules”

Spain Defense Minister Warns Army May Intervene Unless “Catalonia Obeys The Rules”

With Spain’s Catalan region on the verge of electing pro-independence parties and seeking autonomy from central rule, the government (clearly worried) has ramped up the rhetoric on what consequences lie ahead. In a rather stunning outburst for a supposed democracy, CNA reports, the Spanish Defence Minister, Pedro Morenés, assured that the army won’t act in Catalonia as long as “everybody fulfills their duty.” The Catalan minister for the presidency exclaimedMorenes statement was “out of this world,” and could only be made by “someone who is afraid of democracy.” The army will “enforce the Constitution,” Morenes concludes, unless “members strictly obey the rules.” As one pro-independence minister opined, “threatening and trying to intimidate means that you are only left with stupidity.”

In Novermeber, Spain got a big surprise… Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has a problem. Despite his best legal and propoganda defenses (and harsh weather conditions) today’s symbolioc vote for Catalonia independence proceeded… and the initial results (with 88% of the vote counted) are in:

  • *TURNOUT IN CATALAN BALLOT WAS ABT 2.25 MLN, GOVT SAYS
  • *81% BACK INDEPENDENCE IN CATALAN BALLOT

The Spanish government is saying the “data is not valid” and is investigating the illegal ballot calling it a “useless sham.” Catalan President Mas says pro-independence parties will meet this week to put pressure on Madrid.

And now, as Catalan News Agency reports, it appears the government is growing nervous of the forthcoming (Sept 27th) vote…

The Spanish Defence Minister, Pedro Morenés, assured that the army won’t act in Catalonia on 9/27 as long as “everybody fulfils their duty.”In an interview with Spanish National Radio (RNE) this Tuesday he recalled that Catalan politicians “have sworn to obey and enforce the Spanish Constitution” and said that he expected them “to do so.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

 

In Spain, Rapid Rise of Leftists Has a Familiar Ring

In Spain, Rapid Rise of Leftists Has a Familiar Ring

MADRID — He has promised to restructure the debt. He has said it is time to change laws “that allow the rich to keep stealing from us.” He has vowed that Brussels “cannot threaten us” and that “we don’t want any more heads of government who obey and don’t negotiate.”

If it sounds familiar, no, this is not in Greece. It is in Spain.

To many Spaniards, the man behind the statements, Pablo Iglesias, is known simply as “the one with the ponytail.”

But besides his hairstyle and penchant for discount clothing, Mr. Iglesias and his Podemos party are radically shaking up Spain’s political establishment, mirroring the ascent of Syriza, the far-left party that swept to power in Greece in January on a powerful anti-austerity message.

“I really never thought I could become president of the government, but I think we’re now in a situation where this could happen,” Mr. Iglesias said in a recent interview at his new party headquarters.

 

Olduvai IV: Courage
In progress...

Olduvai II: Exodus
Click on image to purchase