They didn’t crush us with Francoism

Wee Ginger Dug

The Spanish state has clearly not learned any lessons, and as I feared the support it has received from the EU and the international community has only emboldened it in its harsh and hardline stance against any negotiations with supporters of Catalan indepedence. In a major escalation today (Thursday), the Spanish High Court has decided to imprison Oriol Junqueras who is the Catalan Vice-President, and half of the Catalan government. Also imprisoned are Raül Romeva the secretary for External and Institutional Relations, Dolors Bassa i Coll the Minister of Labour, Social Affairs and Families, Joaquim Forn the Minister of the Interior, Josep Rull the Secretary for Territory and Sustainability, Jordi Turull the Secretary to the Presidency, Meritxell Borràs the Secretary for Local Government and Public Administration, and Carles Mundó the Justice Secretary. The Secretary for Business and Education, Santi Vila i Vicente was freed on bail of 50,000 €. Vila…

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El cop d’estat

Wee Ginger Dug

Madrid has pressed the constitutional nuclear button and has announced that it’s going to dissolve the institutions of Catalan self-government and impose direct rule. The pro-independence Catalan media is describing it as a cop d’estat – a coup d’etat – against Catalonia by a Spanish government which is already holding two high profile independentistas as political prisoners. Today the streets of Barcelona were filled with half a million demonstrators protesting against Rajoy’s unilateral abolition of Catalan self-government and against the imprisonment of Jordi Cuixart of Omnium Cultural and Jordi Sanchez of the Assemblea Nacional Catalana. Both have been denied bail on charges of sedition for helping to organise October’s independence referendum. Due to the slow and labyrinthine workings of the Spanish legal system, they could be imprisoned for four years before coming to trial.

The Partido Popular minority government in Madrid has announced that the Catalan Parliament will now have…

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The only way out of the darkness

Wee Ginger Dug

If you’re old enough, you might remember the fall of the Berlin Wall, and then several years later the election of a Labour government after long and dark decades of Tory rule that crushed the soul, took a blowtorch to hope, and destroyed communities. The 90s were when many people really did have reason to believe that things could only get better. A brighter future beckoned, a Europe at peace with itself, a Britain in which the rampant greed and selfishness of the Thatcher era had been replaced with a kinder and gentler country which cared for the weak and provided for the have nots, a Scotland that had some control over its own destiny and a say in shaping its economy, its society and its fate. And here we are twenty years later, surrounded by the ashes of dreams. Things only got shittier.

The future has never looked bleaker…

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The fantasies of a trailer park government

Wee Ginger Dug

The UK government apparently knows more about the effects of Brexit than it’s prepared to reveal. This isn’t a good sign. If the effects were going to be just absolutely wonderful they’d be plastered all over the pages of the Tories’ favourite pro-Brexit propaganda sheets. According to a former aide to David Davis, the Brexit Secretary, the government has researched the economic effects of Brexit, but is refusing to reveal its findings. According to the former aide, Scotland and the North East of England will be the worst affected parts of the UK. The government has refused a Freedom of Information request from opposition MPs asking for the research to be published. This government, that is supposed to represent and defend our interests remember, is refusing to confirm or deny that any such analysis exists.

It’s like that show Catfish on MTV in which a person involved in a long…

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The day that Spain died

Wee Ginger Dug

Can you imagine the outrage and shock if Westminster imported 6000 armed police officers from the rest of the UK in order to prevent the people of Scotland peacefully and democratically exercising their right to determine their own future? Can you imagine those police officers causing hundreds of injuries? That’s exactly what’s going on in Catalonia today. When the response of a state to a demand on the part of some of its citizens for a referendum on self-determination is violence, you’re no longer a democracy.

Today’s the day that Spain died. The concept of Spain as a liberal democracy is dead. This is supposed to be a modern liberal democratic state where the right to freedom of expression and freedom on opinion is sacrosanct. You can’t claim to be a democratic country when police fire rubber bullets at people who are peacefully queueing up to vote. You can’t claim…

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The avocado toilet suite of politics

Wee Ginger Dug

Don’t you kind of yearn for the days when it was the SNP that the media told us was a sinister cult? Now we’ve actually got real cult at the heart of British politics, and the sound of silence is deafening. Because when you’ve got people chanting Oooooh Jeremy Corbyn at an anti-Brexit rally, such as we’ve seen at the Labour party conference, what you’ve got is the replacement of reality with a blind and counterfactual faith. When you’re hoping that a man who is opposed to the Single Market, the Customs Union, and freedom of movement is the hero who will keep the country in the Single Market, the Customs Union, and preserve freedom of movement, that’s every bit as cultish as the belief that you can cure a skin condition by lighting a candle and setting fire to a tub of exfoliant before a wee statue of the…

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