Posts Tagged ‘Spain’

Demonstration outside Spanish Embassy

October 21, 2017

A demonstration outside Spanish Embassy in Athens to condemn the Fascist regime and its treatment of Catalonia.

Madrid the buzz on the streets

May 24, 2015
Podemos four years ago

Podemos four years ago

If I devised a system, where a tiny percentage owned and controlled all the wealth society produces, where the overwhelming percentage of the population were poor and getting poorer, would such a system be tolerated?

If the answer is no, then why do we tolerate such a system, as that is what we have now?

Indeed it is even worse. We are destroying the planet to keep the system in place.

Why then do we tolerate it, why do we not rise up and not only remove the corrupt politicians who keep the system in place, why do we not replace the system with a fairer system of open coops, open commons, sharing, of participation?

In Greece they are doing, in the little Somerset town of Frome they are doing, in Spain this Sunday they went to the polls and we can but hope Podemos and citizen groups have overthrown the corrupt system.

Crisis economica en Puerto de la Cruz

June 10, 2012
 boarded up shops in Puerto de la Cruz

boarded up shops in Puerto de la Cruz

Last year I was shocked at the number of bars, shops and restaurants that were closed down, boarded up in Puerto de la Cruz in Tenerfe in the Canary Islands.

This year I expected it to be far far worse.

I was therefore surprised to see the number of people on the streets, the bars were full, the restaurants were overflowing.

It was all sadly an illusion, It was carnival time. As soon as the carnival was over the streets were empty.

It was as though everyone was having one last binge, blow everything, then nothing left.

I walked back one night from chatting with my Swedish friend Julia. It was around midnight. It was eerily quiet, no one was about, I was the only one on the streets, my footsteps were echoing down the quiet streets.

Bars were closing at ten in the evening. Often we were the only ones in bar. If we did not get to a bar before ten we would find it closed.

Talking to a bar owner, he said local people had no money, tourists were not spending. That is why I was finding bars shutting at 10pm, if not earlier.

He counted off on his hands, ten hotels that had closed down. He said many hotels had not paid their staff for months, others had laid off staff.

Where I was staying they had clearly laid of loads of waiters as there was not sufficient staff to provide a decent service.

That many hotels have gone all inclusive is not good. It was hitting the local economy last year, and only serves to make a dire situation worse.

I found whole streets, every single bar, restaurant, shop, closed down and boarded up.

I encountered a problem I had never experienced before. Gangs of rough looking young men aged 20-30 hanging around. I wondered how long it would be before they set upon tourists who had what they lacked, money.

A friend who had lost her job as a music teacher told me a new teacher would be hired on lower pay.

I do not know what the unemployment figures are for Puerto de la Cruz. For Spain it is 25%. Youth unemployment 40-50%.

The Spanish government has been repeating like a mantra: We are not seeking a bailout.

Saturday lunchtime on BBC Radio 4 Moneybox, UBS said Spain would not be seeking a bailout that weekend, but may need a bailout in the near future.

Saturday night Spain went cap in hand on bended knees to Germany and the EU and sought 100 billion euros for its ailing banks.

100 billion euros is pissing in the wind. Spain is the fourth eurozone country to seek a bailout.

Tarifa

May 4, 2010
Tarifa - Priya Sher

Tarifa - Priya Sher

The Alchemist: At the highest point in Tarifa there is an old fort, built by the Moors. From atop its walls, one can catch a glimpse of Africa.