While the Financial Times is not normally particularly high-up on my reading list, it does carry some interesting political comment from time to time. A few years back, I recall that the FT attacked the PP for failing to properly criticise Lt Gen. Mena Aguado who famously threatened military intervention should Catalonia pass its new Statute of Autonomy.
Well in this most recent editorial, both Zapatero and Rajoy come in for criticism, but Rajoy and the PP far more so. The present government is credited with having ‘managed the macroeconomy competently but [doing] little to address structural weaknesses such as low productivity growth, a weak technology base and a huge current account deficit”.
Then, after referring to the PP’s constant scaremongering and manufacturing of doubts about the integrity of Spain, this sucker punch:
Mr Aznar also negotiated with Eta, and allied with regional forces, just like the Socialists – as whoever wins next Sunday may well have to do. The PP’s problem is that its current leaders have not completed their journey from Francoist roots to a modern centre-right.
Thank you, FT. All it took was one paragraph but you’ve finally printed something which we here in Spain all know to be true and have been trying to get outsiders (as well as misguided expats here) to see. The language and non-dialogue of Francoism (if not its bizarre economic policies) live on in most of the PP’s currents. The ‘left wing’ of the party (Piqué, Gallardon etc) has just been effectively shut down. Rajoy finished yesterday’s debate with the words of the fascist Movimiento Nacional. They haven’t moved on and many of us here in Spain have been saying that for years.
Unlike in the UK, general elections in Spain remain a choice between two generally very different political parties. The PP, which simply is not a natural party of the centre-right, remains deeply conservative and has been painfully ineffective as an opposition. It would be a disaster if they were elected next weekend.
[Via: From Catalonia To Caledonia]