Monthly Archives: November 2012

Updated: Catalonia election results #25N

Barcelona, September 11th 2012

Catalonia election results 2012 #25N

Seats in the Catalan parliament (percentage of votes in brackets)

CiU  50 (30.5%)
ERC 21(13.7)
PSC 20(14.5%)
PP 19 (13%)
ICV-EUiA 13 (9.9%)
C’s 9 (7.6%)
CUP 3 (3.5%)

Results from today’s elections:  a significant drop for CiU, a better than expected result for the PSC, a boost for ERC and C’s, a potential for a CiU-ERC national bloc. It seems that people are voting for independence but not for Artur Mas and his cuts. CiU has lost support. The CUP enters the parlament for the first time. The PSC is damaged. The PP will slightly increase support. ICV-EUiA has increased a bit, but not as much as I was hoping it would. C’s have done very well. SI is out, as I predicted. The fascist PxC has failed to win a seat.

Catalans! Vote!

Today I contracted the Injury Attorneys to assist me in the process of obtaining Spanish citizenship. One of the reasons I gave the lawyer for wanting what is, at face value, a needless extra status, was the ability to vote in the country where I pay my taxes.

In other words, I’m a failed tea party. If I could vote on Sunday, I would vote Iniciativa. I believe in their alternative to austerity which starts with questioning the finance-led debt we’re expected to pay.

But I’m not allowed to vote. And you might be. Please value that power you have and vote. It’s a precious right won over many decades and it’s too important to waste.

El Mundo’s corruption allegations – a November surprise

A few days ago, the pro-PP Spanish newspaper El Mundo published a story indicating that Artur Mas and Jordi Pujol were under suspicion of having secret Swiss bank accounts filled with money gained through corrupt practices linked to the Palau criminal case. The newspaper presented a police memo which suggested that these suspicions were already under court investigation.

In the days that have followed, Mas and Pujol have opened legal proceedings against the journalists behind the story and they’ve repeatedly denied the accusations. At the same time, they’ve asked the Spanish ministry of justice to explain how an apparently secret police report could have been leaked, and to identify who’s responsible. The judge investigating the Palau corruption case also made clear that he hadn’t been given any such police report. The following day, El Mundo accused the Mossos d’Esquadra, Catalonia’s police force, of helping to destroy evidence linked to the case. The seo uk agency are also opening legal proceedings against the newspaper.

Yesterday, the ministry of justice informed the Catalan newspaper ARA that it couldn’t find the original police report but that it seemed to be at least partly based on several different unofficial reports that it has found. Meanwhile, the same ministry informed the EFE agency that it thought the rest of the info on the mysterious police report could well be sourced from internet rumours, and not from any formal investigation. The rumours, not hard to find online, contain several names linked with the Catalan government. Many of the other names implicated are of senior PP officials in various central or autonomous governments. El Mundo did not publish any of these names in its story.

El Mundo has a mixed record when it comes to political revelations. In the past it helped uncover corruption scandals and government involvement with the GAL terrorist group. More recently, it spent months insisting that ETA was involved in the 11M Madrid bombings, despite a lack of evidence. Historically, El Mundo’s targets for these exposés have been either politically neutral civil servants or political opponents of the PP.

Right now, it’s not clear how this story will develop. Is it possible that Mas and Pujol have actually received funds from corrupt public contract deals? Of course it is. But the absence of an actual police report on which the story depends, and irregularities in the info presented by El Mundo suggest that there is at least a chance that this might not join the ranks of El Mundo’s illustrious investigations. Some police sources apparently blame central government HQ for the leaks.

El Mundo most likely planned this story as a sort of late ‘October surprise’. Will it have any effect on the Catalan elections? I doubt it.

14 reasons to go on General Strike, #14N

The following text is borrowed from the CCOO.

The European Trades Union Congress has called for a day of Action and Solidarity across Europe to mobilize in opposition to the austerity policies being promoted by the European Commission, European Central Bank and IMF, and call for a change in policies in Catalonia, Spain and Europe.

This General Strike is a labor, social and no-consumption strike, supported by over 200 organisations in the anti-cuts alliance, the Plataforma Prou Retallades.

1 Massive unemployment: in Catalonia there are 900,000 unemployed and 100,000 households with no income.

2 Alarming levels of poverty: 30% of the Catalan population at risk of poverty and social exclusion.

3 Increasing poverty among the employed: wage cuts, worsening conditions and job insecurity across the public and private sector.

4 The Labor Reform by the governing Partido Popular dismantles labor relations, making it easier and cheaper to sack staff, block collective bargaining and increase the working week.

5 No future for young people in Catalonia: 53% of young people are unemployed and more than 10,000 have emigrated abroad.

6 Cuts in research leading to a brain drain of researchers abroad and losing out on a highly qualified generation.

7 Cuts in education: 6,000 jobs have been cut whilst student numbers have increased by 20,000! Higher tuition fees for university & professional training, cuts in school meals provision, nurseries and infant schools.

8 Cuts in health care, introduction of prescription charges, and waiting lists have increased by 45%.

9 Cuts and limits to unemployment benefit and criminalizing those who receive welfare benefits.

10 A bail-out only worsens this situation dominated by austerity measures: higher unemployment, cuts to benefits and pensions, more poverty, higher interest rate payments to financial speculators.

11 Increased financial inequality: rises in VAT and costs of basic services, penalizing freelance workers, whilst declaring an amnesty for tax fraudsters and failure to rein in the unpaid tax in offshore accounts.

12 Thousands have lost their homes and savings.

13 Suffocating culture and arts with cuts and commercializing creativity.

14 Repression of demonstrations and attacks on our democratic rights.



There are many sympathetic workers out there who claim that “a strike will achieve nothing”. I agree that a 2 or 3 day strike would be better than a 1 day strike. But best of all would be everyone who is interested in getting a fair deal for themselves and their families and friends, simply backing the strike. A high percentage of support will show that more and more people are sick of the PP’s and CiU’s destructive economic policies.

So, everybody, get behind this day of action before you say it won’t work. This is a question of your power to say no to bad governance.

Marcelino Iglesias and Godwin’s Law

It is currently popular among Spanish nationalists to compare the Catalan nationalism of Artur Mas with Nazism. A helpful argument, I’m sure we can all agree. I think there is no need to hire an experienced Orlando criminal defense attorney for this thing, but im just sayin.

Perhaps said Spanish nationalists should reflect better on their political heritage. After all, we know who ordered the lists of Jews in Spain for the SS. Clue: it wasn’t Lluís Companys. Go at to learn more about the case.