Spain

Herd Immunity, Reinfection and the Great Barrington Declaration

14 October 2020 After eight full months of the global pandemic, the pressure to keep the economies open and let the chips (or rather, the elderly) fall where they may is growing strong. The ‘Great Barrington Declaration’ of 4 October was signed by three medical professors from Oxford, Harvard and Stanford universities and by tens …

Herd Immunity, Reinfection and the Great Barrington Declaration Read More »

Fragmentation: The Tribalisation of Politics

‘Homo economicus’ is dead. Long live ‘homo tribuarius’! That’s not really something to celebrate, but it’s certainly true that in most democratic countries economic self-interest is no longer the most important factor in voters’ choices. Tribalism of various sorts is taking its place, and that is not an improvement. Take three quite different countries that …

Fragmentation: The Tribalisation of Politics Read More »

The Catalan Dilemma

The demonstrations, some of them violent, are still going on in Catalonia a week after Spain’s Supreme Court sentenced nine separatist leaders to between nine and thirteen years in prison for sedition. This was the last thing Spain’s prime minister Pedro Sanchez needed three weeks before a national election in which his Socialist Party was …

The Catalan Dilemma Read More »

Spain and Catalonia

It’s been a busy week in Spain. On Tuesday twelve Catalan leaders of the attempted secession from Spain in 2017 went on trial in Madrid, charged with rebellion, sedition and the misuse of public funds. And on Wednesday the Spanish government fell when two small Catalan nationalist parties voted against its budget, essentially to punish …

Spain and Catalonia Read More »

Catalonia Again

I’m sitting here trying to write an article about the election in Catalonia on Wednesday, because there’s nothing else to write about. It would be more interesting if the African National Congress, South Africa’s ruling party for the past 23 years, elects a new leader who is not Jacob Zuma’s ex-wife, but the results on …

Catalonia Again Read More »

Fake Referendum: Catalonia

Catalonia, the north-eastern region of Spain (population of 7,5 million), declared independence from Spain last Tuesday evening. It was done quite formally, in the regional parliament in Barcelona, with regional president Carles Puigdemont, members of his cabinet and some leaders of other parties signing the independence document. Independence was “the people’s will”, Puigdemont said, referring …

Fake Referendum: Catalonia Read More »