dijous, 15 de novembre de 2007

Reason 7: Spain does not allow us to exist II

If one compares the Catalan and the Scottish autonomy one can see that many of the reasons I mention here are already solved for the Scottish autonomy:
Scotland has got own international sports federations and can compete independently from the UK. Scotland hasn’t got the problems Catalonia has got of a blurred and unclear distinction of political competences; the British government doesn’t have any financial secrets to hide. Scotland is allowed to organize a referendum for independence (forbidden for Catalonia by an antidemocratic Spanish law). They also have own number plates with own Scottish identity.
As you can see Catalonia has got many more reasons to wish independence than Scotland.

Xavier solano is a Catalan living in Scotland. He is political adviser to the Scottish National Party and he he’s got an own blog in Catalan language: http://xaviersolano.blogspot.com/

He is also the author of the book ‘El mirall escocès’ (The Scottish mirror).

As he states in his blog, the Spanish government, once again, has decided to hide the multicultural reality of Spain. They know many Catalan and Basque people would like to have an own number plate for their car with their own Catalan or Basque identity. In fact, the past few years many people already placed illegally a sticker covering the ‘E’ of Spain.

You can read at e-noticies the bad excuse the Spanish government gave:

The fact is that once again you can see a concrete example of what the PSOE government Spain is willing to give us: nothing. Not even an insignificant sign of our existence, a Catalan number plate.
And here you see that Catalonia has many more reasons than Scotland to choose for independence.

diumenge, 11 de novembre de 2007

Reason 6: Competence WAR. A waste of time

(Image source*)

The development of the new Catalan mini constitution called ‘Estatut’ has proven that Spanish and Catalan politicians are not doing their work properly. It is unclear what concerns the Catalan government and what is the competence of the Spanish government. Last year the Spanish government imposed to Catalonia an extra hour of Spanish lessons to Catalan schools. A discussion about whether this should be decided by the Catalan government or the Spanish one followed. The last news I heard from the Catalan government was that it is both governments’ competence.

The fact is that the Spanish government can decide anything they want for Catalonia and their decisions are always above the ones made by the Catalan government. This situation has become clear to me the last months with the developments around the ‘estatut’.

Conclusion: Catalonia hasn’t got an own government. What we thought was our ‘own’ government is totally subordinate to the Spanish government.

There are other examples of this phenomenon. But I won’t enter in more details.

Half of the time our politicians are arguing about what is their competence and what isn’t. I haven’t read the entire Estatut and I am not an expert in the making of laws. Is the Estatut unclear about who does what? Can it be interpreted in different ways?
It seems that Madrid’s interpretation of the Estatut is a different one than the Catalan one.
Even worse than these discussions is the power game Madrid is playing with Catalonia. Some politicians (mostly from the PP party) are trying to put obstacles to its development by bringing it to court. Others are simply neglecting it, avoiding its implantation. The Spanish government committed itself to apply the Catalan Estatut in a certain amount of time. And they are not doing that. First they agreed to do so and now they always have an excuse not to do so. For example, not so long ago I heard a Spanish politician saying that he doesn’t want to do anything as long as the Estatut hasn’t been fully approved by the Spanish Constitution tribunal (which is formed by a majority of anti-Catalan PP, right wing members).
The Spanish Constitution tribunal is impartial and the chances are pretty small that they will approve the Estatut as it is right now.
This makes me think: Is Spain a serious constitutional monarchy or is it a banana republic? To me it does not look like a serious country at all.

In any case the vague distinction of competences between the Catalan toy-government and the Spanish banana republic is for me a very good reason to choose for independence. If Catalonia were an independent country our politicians would have all power of decision and would not spend any more half of their time arguing with the Spaniards about what is there competence and what isn’t.
And the Catalan government would be fully responsible. It would be much more efficient and the citizens would know who is really in charge and who has the responsibility in all cases. We would decide what we want for our country and there wouldn’t be any more power games such as the ones mentioned above. It would all be much simpler and clearer for us all.

* Image source: http://fransiworld.blogcindario.com/2005/10/00100-hasta-los-webos.html