Monday, October 10, 2016

Shielding The Balearics

They're thinking of erecting a shield. What might this be? Some giant, invisible forcefield floating above the Balearics, deflecting assaults from a Rajoy Air Force firing off lawsuits in attempts to prevent high explosive being placed under the Balearic budget and a hole being blasted into the deficit the size of the Gorg Blau reservoir (when full)?

Or might the shield be a human one, comprising the last remaining tourists to ever set foot on Balearic soil (all of it to be returned to a virginal state) before the tourist tax is put up one hundred fold? Those planning the shield were the Daves - April (of Més) and Spart (aka Alberto Jarabo of Podemos). The "pact" of government is to be shielded. Francina Armengol will be ushered into a bunker, occasionally emerging to engage in consensus and dialogue, while the Daves get on with the business of that deficit-blowing.

This is what happens, you see, when socialist parties implode (in Spain, at any rate). Rent asunder by the apparent willingness to anoint Mariano, the socialists of the Balearics were cast further adrift from peninsula (or any other) reality than the 250 kilometres or so typically allow them to operate in less than splendid isolation. It was the socialists themselves who required shielding. The Daves were making overtures to them. Come and join us. We open our hearts to PSOE-ites whose hearts might otherwise be pierced by the knife of Rajoy investiture.

Francina, meanwhile, was all for going it alone in a socialist fashion. Pedro Sánchez, not beware the Ides of October, had been knifed - "Et tu, Susana?". The betrayal of socialist principles (as in allowing Rajoy to carry on), delivered with the stab in Sánchéz's back, was sufficient for Francina to consider isolating Balearic socialists even more. PSIB would mean PSIB. No more PSOE, that's for sure.

Adding to this mayhem, Dave April was speaking about sovereignty. Might the 2019 regional election become a referendum for Balearic independence? Dave was neither ruling it out nor ruling it in, which was something of a theme of the week. What actually were they thinking about the tourist tax? The official line was that there would be no increase in 2017. Finance minister (for now) Catalina Cladera insisted there wouldn't be, but then sort of didn't insist. Her position is vulnerable, and she knows it. Podemos had invited themselves into the budget-setting process for next year. Next it'll be places in the government. Tourist tax increase, anyone? Don't mind if we do. Any advance on ten times more?

The Podemos Dave - Alberto - first said that it would be "interesting" to "help" to design the budget for 2017, by which he meant write it. Interesting became yes we will design it, and Podemos are already dictating next year's strategy, one by which the Balearic manufacturing sector will, along with the agricultural sector, rise to a position of world dominance. Or maybe not; globalisation not exactly sitting well with anti-capitalists. Hoteliers will meanwhile be packed off to agrarian labour camps for re-education and to cultivate dwindling stocks of carobs.

Piece by piece the shield was being put into place. All in all some further bricks in the wall, each marked Podemos.

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