Friday, 25 November 2011

Let’s celebrate PP’s absolute majority – “de moment”…

I certainly do not think it is fair of the world’s financial market to be as tough as they are on Spain right now. True, Mariano Rajoy and his PP team have not yet started to take measures, but the elections where they saw their historic victory were only last Sunday. If you ask me, I am confident that they will make the economy one of their strongest disciplines, especially so since they reached the desired absolute majority (186 of 350 seats in the “congreso”!) and therefore do not depend on any other party when they finally start implementing the many reforms which Zapatero and PSOE, unfortunately, spent so much time delaying.

My interpretation is that the people of Spain have voted PP well aware that will result in big austerity cuts and increases of fees and taxes. True, when that happens some of you will protest that Rajoy did not give you all details before the elections, but that is not serious. We all knew and we all know what will come. Those of you who, within shortly, will show your anger in the streets did not vote PP in the first place, and those who did were not exactly dreaming about more public libraries - not even airports, this time around. ;)

Then I hear that many of you now worry about what a strong PP government will mean for Catalonia and our Catalan language, but I, for one, do not. True, I moved here only in 2005, so I have never lived in a Spain ruled by the “conservatives”, but let us be realistic: four years are a very short time! And the coming four years will - in the best case - be marked by a burdensome recuperation from the deep crisis in which Catalonia and the rest of Spain have already sunk so deep. Here the Catalan branch of PP is totally right: Spain cannot recover without Catalonia, just as Catalonia cannot recover without Spain. Whatever long term vision you might have for this country, for now we have to accept that economies which are totally intertwined have to support each other - to do the opposite would be only counterproductive.

As you might understand, thanks to PP’s victory I have again started to feel hopeful about the future and – as strange as it will seem to some of you – the main reason lies in their Spanish patriotism. I mean, you cannot have missed how many times the party’s representatives repeat that “!España es un gran país¡” (Spain is a great country!) whenever they have the opportunity. Change ‘Spain’ for ‘Greece’ and proclaim that phrase in my native Sweden, and you will see how people react.

Rajoy will never want to see foreigners laughing at Spain, as we now all do at any sign of Greek national pride. The absolute majority has given him the perfect conditions to demonstrate what a strong, democratically elected, government can achieve when acting fast and radically, in contrast with countries ruled by broad coalitions or technocrats. May PP surprise the world and show that Spain is different – for a start – and even great! Why not?

So, join me and celebrate PP’s absolute majority! – “de moment”…

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More or less related links:

ENG - BBC Video: Spain’s conservatives celebrate landslide victory
SPA - (Provisional) Official election results: Ministerio del Interior
SPA - LaVanguardia: Mariano, échanos algo
SPA - El Mundo: La prima de riesgo de España, al alza, y la Bolsa, a la baja


Lee said...

This is the best humor column I've read in a while.

Erik Wirdheim said...


Thank you for sharing your opinion .


MarkT said...

An interesting viewpoint.
Rajoy may strengthen Spain's economy and profile in Europe, but at what cost to the people. He's already sought reviews on Gay marriage, abortion law and divorce laws. His reforms are likely to mean cuts to basic services and unemployment subsidies and result in fewer labour rights.
Spain is Spain because of its people not because of its economy.

Erik Wirdheim said...


Thanks for commenting!

Spain is of course Spain because of its people, so let's remember that it is precisely the people of Spain who have now granted PP an absolute majority.

When it comes to labour rights you will find me firmly on the side of PP. Spain needs to again make it attractive to employ people here legally - today it simply isn't. For me, the highest unemployment rate in Europe is the proof that Zapatero's policies have been a total fiasco.

When its comes to civil rights, on the other hand, I both hope and believe that PP will adapt to modern society. If Spaniards in general would have been firmly against PSOE's reforms regarding sexual and reproductive rights they could have voted against them in 2008. They didn't!

There will come a time when the liberals within PP realize that they are probably as many as those who have conservative morals. The absolute majority will speed up that discovery.