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Tag: Madrid
Will a continent turn its back on democracy (December 21 2012) Will a continent turn its back on democracy (December 21 2012)

Antony James Beevor the 65 year old British historian and author has published an article in The Prospect titled ‘Will a continent turn its back on democracy?’ Beevor states”…We again face the danger of a world depression and we are beginning to see mass unemployment in some countries, especially in southern Europe. Last year, Giles Paxman, the British ambassador in Madrid, pointed out how remarkable it was that despite the terrifying levels of youth unemployment in Spain, there had been an astonishingly low level of social disorder. The demonstrations of the “Indignados,” the young Spaniards who have taken to the streets to protest against austerity measures and unemployment, have been passionate but not violent. His theory is that the memory of the horrors of the Spanish civil war is acting like a nuclear threat in the background. He may well be right. Greece also suffered from a civil war, and although there have been a considerable amount of violent protests in Athens, folk memory is likely to hold the country back from outright conflict. …What are the dangers and threats to parliamentary democracy in Europe? Can the fundamental contradictions in the euro project be overcome? The dynamic of the moment seems to be that political integration must be drastically accelerated to make up for the flagrant paradoxes that existed from the euro’s very foundation and were scandalously ignored. The same foreign minister argued to me last autumn that the economic situation was so grave that Europe must adopt a presidential system with direct elections. That idea is now becoming general currency in top European circles. Economic and political control would be drastically centralised with virtually no accountability. This would be nothing less than an elective dictatorship bringing with it the threat of nationalism, the very thing the European project intended to avoid.”


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Critical portrayal of life in Cuba (November 1 2012) Critical portrayal of life in Cuba (November 1 2012)

Yoani María Sánchez Cordero the 37 year old Cuban blogger, who achieved international fame and awards for her critical portrayal of life in Cuba under its current government, has been arrested along with her husband held while en route to attend the trial of Spanish activist. An Aljazeera states “Sanchez could not be reached by telephone, but her Twitter account includes entries from Thursday in which she recounted scenes from a cross-country trip, including two stops by police to fumigate her car, apparently for mosquitoes. Sanchez, through her blog Generation Y and other writings, has become Cuba’s best-known dissident and has won various awards overseas, but is never allowed out of Cuba to collect them. She was reported last week to have filed a complaint against Cuba with the Inter-American Human Rights Commission for repeatedly refusing to grant her a travel visa. The newspaper El Pais in Madrid said on its website Sanchez was its freelance correspondent and that it had tried to reach her by phone without success. Sanchez, her husband and others apparently were on their way to Bayamo for the trial of Carromero, who is charged with two counts of vehicular manslaughter for the death of Paya and his colleague Harold Cepero. Carromero was driving a small rental car with Paya, Cepero and Jens Arons Modig, a Swedish political activist, aboard when he lost control on a section of road under repair and crashed into a tree near Bayamo. He and Modig, who were not seriously hurt, said they were driving the dissidents to meet supporters.”


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Spanish public won't accept a financial coup d'etat (October 10 2012) Spanish public won’t accept a financial coup d’etat (October 10 2012)

Katharine Ainger the Barcelona based writer interested in the points where art, creativity, radical democracy and ecological justice intersect, reports in an article for The Guardian titled ‘The Spanish public won’t accept a financial coup d’etat’, claiming that Spain’s government is right to fear the public reaction to this new round of suffering mandated by the financial markets. Ainger states “The attempt by the Spanish “Occupy” movement, the indignados, to surround the Congress in Madrid has been compared by the secretary general of the ruling rightwing People’s party (PP) to an attempted coup. Spanish democracy may indeed be in peril, but the danger is not in the streets. According to the Financial Times, the EU has been in secret talks with the economy minister Luis de Guindos to implement further austerity measures in advance of Spain requesting a full bailout. …The government is right to fear the Spanish public’s reaction to this new round of suffering mandated by the financial markets. … Spain is on the brink of insolvency and under huge pressure to accept a rescue package. In return, the eurozone’s fourth largest economy will have to surrender sovereign and financial control to the IMF, the European commission, and the European Central Bank. …Already many protest signs say: “We can’t take any more.” With a 26% unemployment rate, 22% of Spanish households now live below the poverty line and a further 30% cannot “reach the end of the month”… Loss of sovereignty is fuelling desire for Catalan independence with huge protests. Spanish citizen movements, like those in Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Italy and France have demanded a debt audit, to see who really owes what to whom.”


Inspired by The Guardian image source Twitter

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