Thursday, 20 December 2007

UK National Identity Scheme

Mr Andrew Hooke, Chief Operating Officer and Head of Government Practice from the PA Consulting Group, sent this letter to the editor of the Financial Times, which makes a couple of good points in the debate about the UK National Identity Scheme.

Sir, Following the recent release of personal information from the UK's Revenue and Customs, some have speculated that the National Identity Scheme should be abandoned. They fear a similar release from the database supporting the scheme - the National Identity Register (NIR). This ignores the role that biometric technology plays in the scheme.
The biographic information recorded on the NIR is limited by law to basic identity information such as name, address, gender and date of birth. However, crucially, any attempt to steal an identity would need to be backed up by a matching identity card with associated biometric information (eg, fingerprints).
Here is the fraudster's problem - they may have obtained personal information about an individual but the identity already exists in the NIR, preventing them from obtaining a false identity card by this route. Any identity card obtained would be associated with a fundamental different identity because the biometric record would be different. The two identities - that of the fraudster and their target - would have diverged, with different NIR numbers, and the attempted fraud would have failed.
Biometric data need to be supported by a valid card and therefore are of little value to a fraudster. Any stolen card can be revoked.
Far from being a potential source of identity theft, the National Identity Scheme is a valuable tool for its prevention. It will go a long way towards reducing identity fraud and it will greatly simplify many transactions. The scheme never was about storing sensitive information on UK citizens. It is about reducing crime and making life simpler for everyone.

Andrew Hooke, Financial Times (October 2007)

I am completely in favour of the implementation of a UK National Identity Scheme. I support this scheme even though I will help to fund it (since I am a UK taxpayer) and I won't obtain direct benefits from it.

Tuesday, 11 December 2007

English girls vs American girls

I once got to the end of a date in New York, pulled out my credit card to pay and the girl solemnly remarked: “A green American Express card? I didn’t know they still made them in that colour.”

Tad Safran, American beauty?, Timesonline (11/12/2007)

Gals, you should read this article and act in consequence... Boys, just have a laugh since most of you have already seen the best years (15-18) of the English girls of your age.

Monday, 10 December 2007

Islam's silent moderates

When a “moderate” Muslim’s sense of compassion and conscience collides with matters prescribed by Allah, he should choose compassion. Unless that happens much more widely, a moderate Islam will remain wishful thinking.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Islam’s Silent Moderates, New York Times (07/12/2007)

Why are the so-called moderate Islamists so silent when the extremists Islamists act?

One obvious difference between Christianism and Islamism is this one about compassion. Jesus Christ taught us that the Law (in this case, the Sabbath) was made for the Man, not the Man for the Law (Mk 2:27). Jesus Christ taught us to be compassive and forgiving and to show God's love. This attitude was a revolution from the Jewish "eye for eye" rule. Muhammad, however, when designed his theories drinking from the sources of the Christianism and Judaism, picked the tougher attitude, easier to be accepted by the Arabian patriarchs and maybe because Muhammad himself was full of resentment against Jews and Christians and was not exactly feeling compassive in that moment.

I strongly request every Muslim who call themselves moderate to stand up against cruelty in the name of Islam. I strongly request every Christian who call themselves moderate to stand up against cruelty in the name of Christianism.

Love and freedom.

Saturday, 1 December 2007

The Kid in Liverpool

P.- Se ha montado un debate: ¿a quién debe quitar Luis para ponerle a usted?
R.- Es lo de siempre. El día que aficionados, prensa y jugadores entendamos que, juegue quien juegue, juegan 11 españoles, y que si ganan ellos ganamos todos, entonces estaremos en el camino de hacer algo.

Interview to Fernando Torres, El Mundo (30/11/2007)

A sensible, happy guy, a Kid who has grown up. Welcome to England. Good luck with Liverpool. And let's be lucky with Spain's football national team.

Sunday, 25 November 2007

Choca ver a este pueblo tan dispuesto a asaltar sedes electorales en las jornadas de reflexión, a convertir en teas sublimes las chabacanas fiestas populares o a batirse en centenares de miles por la paz en Irak (aunque fuese más bien por la guerra contra Aznar), choca, digo, este ovino silencio proyectado sobre tantas clamorosas pruebas de incompetencia y degeneración. Puede ser, desde luego, que sólo las ideas muevan el mundo: uno sale a la calle a gritar por la paz y no por los trenes de cercanías.

A., El Mundo (24/11/2007)

The contrast of the society's behaviour depending who governs is something that I wonder about too.

Love and freedom.

Thursday, 22 November 2007

Spanish "volatile left" electorate

El objetivo principal de una campaña electoral, de cualquier campaña electoral, en España debe ser para el PP que no vayan a votar los que le detestan y para el PSOE que acudan a las urnas los que le desprecian. ¿Son consistentes sus estrategias electorales con estos principios?

Cesar Molina, El Pais (11/11/2007)

I roughly agree with this article by Cesar Molina. My question is: why this "volatile left" is still left?

Monday, 19 November 2007

Bastards in PSE-PSOE

The analysis shown in the document by the Police underlines the reasons why the [terrorist group] ETA, apparently, does not want to produce deaths with its blasts: "The only hope of the terrorist band is that the PSOE wins the elections, after which they have chances to reach a ceasefire achieving most of their objectives and the release of the prisoners"

El análisis reflejado en el documento policial subraya los motivos por los que ETA, aparentemente, no quiere causar muertos con sus atentados: "Ya que la única esperanza de la banda es que el PSOE gane las elecciones, tras las cuales tienen posibilidades de llegar a un alto el fuego consiguiendo buena parte de sus objetivos y la liberación de los presos".

Antonio Rubio, El (19/11/2007)

Even the terrorists know it: Prime Minister Rodríguez Zapatero and Jesús Eguiguren, you are just a couple of cows, bastards and liars.

(Para que todos los que sólo hablan español se enteren: Incluso los terroristas lo saben: Presidente Rodríguez Zapatero y Jesús Eguiguren, sólo sois un par de cobardes, bastardos y mentirosos.)

Yeah, I know that I am insulting and not argumenting, but honestly, what do you expect from me when they are plotting with terrorists and selling our fellow countrymen? Do you expect me to even have to reason my deep outrage? I spit on them.

And don't tell me that the police information might not be true. The police are not silly. And the PSE-PSOE have met the terrorist band ETA many times before, even at the same time they said they were not doing it.

How on Earth can PSE and PSOE still be thinking that the terrorist group ETA should not be beaten, but welcomed by giving them all they wanted to achieve by murdering? I can't believe that there are still people who vote PSE-PSOE. Disgusting.

Love and freedom.

Friday, 9 November 2007

Scared to death. An inconvenient truth: the Earth might not be warming up.

Sunday, 4 November 2007

Decalogue of Bullfighting

I take the leave to translate into the English the following post from the blog De España hasta los cantares, written by a well-known, beloved teacher.

In Seville, October the 24th, 2007, the playwriter Albert Boadella, along with the bullfighter Enrique Ponce, delivered a conference on bullfighting, wherein he defined his Decalogue of Bullfighting.

1. Bullfighting has no creator.
2. Bullfighting is a metaphor for life (all that is alive is present in bullfighting).
3. Bullfighting is not a show, it is a ritual.
4. Bullfighting is poetry (beauty is created by using a bare cloth).
5. Bullfighting is ephemeral (it disappears as soon as it is produced).
6. Bullfighting is not looking for modernity, it is always classic.
7. In bullfighting, merit and effort are rewarded (unlike in the LOGSE).
8. The world of bulls reveres Nature (bull-farming respects the environment).
9. Bullfighting is people's art.
10. Bullfighting has got anti-bullfighting people (every art needs detractors to keep alive; anti-taurinos should be subsidised).

Saturday, 3 November 2007

King of Spain's visit to Ceuta and Melilla

The King of Spain to the Spanish cities in Africa, Ceuta and Melilla. It was high time for this. He should have gone 30 years ago.

The theocratic dictator Mohammed VI of Morocco has described the visit as regrettable.

Morocco is in war with Spain. Spaniards don't realise that, should they keep ignoring this fact and opposing no resistance, Moroccan troops will one day be beheading uncovered heads and selling women in Toledo and Tarragona.

The terrorist attacks of Casablanca and Madrid are just another episode of this silenced, forgotten war. As many other neighbouring countries, Spain and the different states occupying Africa’s North West coast have had a long history of conflicts, ever since the province of Mauritania Tingitana was incorporated into the Diocesis Hispaniorum in AD69.

Leaving aside old wars, recent battles include the War of 1859 in Tetouan, the Rif Wars in Melilla (1893 and 1909), Ifni in 1957, and the invasion of Western Sahara in 1975. All these wars were won by Morocco due to Spain’s financial and political weakness.

Morocco considers that Ceuta and Melilla is the next battlefield. Morocco won’t stop in Ceuta and Melilla, anyway; it will demand the Canary Islands as well as any other smaller islands surrounding the African coast.

Mohammed VI is an absolutist king (like many other previous sultans, of course including his father, Hassan II). He is not bothered with the poor situation of his subjects; he boasts Moroccan nationalism with expansionist speeches in order to sidetrack domestic oposition. Mohammed VI will use any possible methods to conquer Spain’s places of sovereignty. He can use "peaceful" demostrations, co-ordinated assaults to Spanish borders, or outright violence.

Spain should defend its places of sovereignty, which include, but are not limited to, Ceuta, Melilla, Islas Chafarinas, Penon de Alhucemas, Penon de Velez de la Gomera, Isla Perejil and Isla de Alboran. Spain should act as the United Kingdom did in the Falklands War if it were necessary.

Spain's constitutional monarchy produces a far better life for Spaniards than the theocratic dictatorship (officially another constitutional monarchy) does for Moroccans. Should Spain's places fall under the power of the King of Morocco, their situation would worsen dramatically. Therefore, Spaniards and Spain shall win this war to preserve the

Love and freedom.

Another instance of PSOE's moronic progres

The organisation of Spain into Comunidades Autonomas have achieved the multiplication of the bureaucracy expenditure and the number of ignorant politicians.

Please suffer this embarrasing speech from the Parliament of the Comunidad de Aragon. Please watch it till the end, it's as hilarious as ludicrous. No surprise that the illiterate deliverer was another witless progre from the PSOE, but it is a shame that she was the spokesman for Education (when she can't even talk!!). Poor Aragon people!

This is the result of the dysfunctional power structures in Spain, the lowering quality of Education, and the gender quota policy. We should change this.

Love and freedom.

Saturday, 27 October 2007

Want to see 5,000 years of religion in 90 seconds?
Love is the reason's hope. Freedom is the reason's triumph.

Love and freedom.
You should present your opinion in an way that readers not familiar with the subject may understand and that is respectful with the people that disagree with you. If you are so taken for something, please write your thought down first and wait until the following day.
Angela Vitelli
La política es el arte de buscar problemas, encontrarlos, hacer un diagnóstico falso y aplicar después los remedios equivocados.
Groucho Marx

Tuesday, 23 October 2007

Enneges Enneco Eneco Ennecho Enecho Enechot Ennecot Enecot Enecco Eneko Enecone Ennecus Enequo Nequo Enego Ennego Eynnego Onneko Genneko Genneco Jenneco Jenneko Jenego Yenego Yennego Yeneguo Yniego Ynigo Hyniego Ynego Yenigo Ienego Iennego Ieneqo Íñigo

My brother's second name acutely reflects the varied, mixed and rich history of Spain. From the Basque to the Spanish, through Latin and dialects of the Castilian and other Spanish languages, the Spanish people have been blessed with speaking and living on this blissful, earthy eden that is Spain.

Love and freedom.

Harry Potter's latest twist

Dumbledore is gay, says J.K. Rowling.

This postscript twists even more the magical end to the Harry Potter saga. Definitely, the seventh book is brilliant and deserves the hysterical wait of its fans.

Friday, 19 October 2007

Having fun with an Apple app

Erich Fromm claims that loving can only be learnt when the phase of narcisism has been overcome by the individual. I think that one of the symptoms that narcisism is being left behind is the fact that one does not take himself too seriously, but instead one learns how to love one´s life while laughing at oneself sometimes. I have attempted to do so all my life.

I hope my sex-appeal hasn't been deadly damaged by these pictures. Although I don't think it can plunge further!

Love and freedom :-)

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Lives of progressive liars (III)

Una palabra o dos, como dice Otelo, antes de irme. Es, como siempre, una pregunta de despedida. ¿Alguien ha reparado que la imagen del 'Guerrillero Heroico' muestra la cara no de un 'visionario revolucionario' sino de un perdedor nato?
Guillermo Cabrera Infante, El Pais Internacional (16/10/2007)

This is the story of Che Guevara's picture according to Guillermo Cabrera Infante. It includes a brief biography of Alberto Korda. This is another poor Cuban citizen turned into a liar due to ambition, hunger and for fear (of Fidel Castro).

Sunday, 14 October 2007

The basic ethics of a journalist that calls for:

1. Seeking truth,
2. Providing fair and comprehensive account of events and issues
3. Thoroughness and honesty

All are victims of the massive agenda driven competition for economic or political supremacy. The death knell of your ethics has been enabled by your parent organizations who have chosen to align themselves with political agendas. What is clear to me is that you are perpetuating the corrosive partisan politics that is destroying our country and killing our service members who are at war.

My assessment is that your profession, to some extent, has strayed from these ethical standards and allowed external agendas to manipulate what the American public sees on TV, what they read in our newspapers and what they see on the web. For some of you, just like some of our politicians, the truth is of little to no value if it does not fit your own preconceived notions, biases and agendas.

Ltg (Ret) Ricardo S. Sanchez, Military Reporters and Editors Address, Washington D.C. (12/10/2007)

General R.S. Sanchez, former top responsible for the US troops in Iraq, is clearly annoyed with the continuously biased reports that American (and, indeed, the Western world's) press publishes about the Iraq War.

The rest of the report is a categorical blast to the war strategy followed by the Bush Jr. administration, which has been conveniently broadcast by the mainstream press: BBC, Reuters, CNN, etc.

BBC, in another one of its typical "un-biased" liberal news headlines provides a piece of video and audio news with the title "Gen Sanchez speaks out against the Iraq war" (reachable from the link above); once the video is downloaded, one can see that its title is "Gen Sanchez damns Iraq war"; but the brief explanation indicates that Lt Gen Ricardo Sanchez has condemned the current strategy in the conflict, calling it a "nightmare". However, Gen Sanchez critizised the current strategy in the conflict, not the Iraq war itself.: if you spend a bit of time reading such report, you'll notice all kinds of accusations against the war strategy and the US decision-makers, but not even one against the need of the war or the war itself. Have you been able to follow back the degree of distorsion journalists are used to do?

Obviously none of the papers and news agencies have mentioned the first part of the report where they have been directly reprimanded. I support Gen Sanchez at least in his denounce of the ethics-lacking journalists.

The fourth power's unethical behaviour is a corruptive cancer of the democracy.

Friday, 12 October 2007

12-October: Hispanic Day

Today, 12th of October, Hispanic Day, Spaniards should feel, if not proud, at least dignified by the achievements and virtues other people born or raised on the same sole have done during the course of the History.

Furthermore, Spaniards and Hispanic Americans celebrate a universal achievement today. It is not a war victory or a divisive event like other Nations' Days. We celebrate the discovery of America. We celebrate the discovery of a New World and the meeting between Human Beings previously unknown to each others. Columbus' arrival at the American coast was the most striking step before N. Armstrong put his foot on the Moon surface.

All Spaniards and Hispanic Americans celebrate this Hispanic Day as a day of union with people outside their own environment and appreciate the belonging to a group that does not only base itself in race, language, tribe, birthtown, or religion: Hispanity is based on a sense of universality, adventure, justice and passion, and obviously on...

Love and freedom.

Thursday, 11 October 2007

The decadence of the species

Everything comes down to the change of species: from the Homo Sapiens Sapiens to the Homo Sapiens Videns. For this one, only what is seen (or sensed) is real.

Philosophy has gone from being the love of the wisdom (according to the old Greeks), through being the study of the vocabulary (according to Wittgenstein), to being the study of the dress code (according to modern progres). People's ideologies are only in their wardrobes, not in their heads any longer. You're classified by the others in the way you dress, no matter what you think, talk or do.

Wednesday, 10 October 2007

Lives of well-known progressive liars (II)

Ernesto "Che" Guevara, shot to death a 12-year-old boy in his head, according to Cuban writer Zoe Valdes following a story published at El Nuevo Herald. Although this accusation might have been made up, there are other documented crimes this cold-blooded killing machine committed (source: Truth Recovery Archive on Cuba, Free Society Project, Inc.).

It is disgusting how Korda's photograph of his face has turned into an icon. And Korda didn't get a penny!

The Eyeopener's article claims, His image remains intact but his message has been thrown to the wind. Message? What message? How to topple fascist dictatorships in exchange for communist dictatorships? Can anyone explain the benefit to me, please?

Love and freedom.

Lives of well-known progressive liars (I)

Juan Luis Cebrián has been a media supporter of Francisco Franco, Carlos Arias Navarro, Felipe González and José Luis Rodríguez. In other words: whoever was in power.

Sunday, 7 October 2007

Orwell thought that the Spanish Civil War was a just war, but he also came to understand that it was a dirty war, where a decent cause was hijacked by goons and thugs, and where betrayal and squalor negated the courage and sacrifice of those who fought on principle.

Christopher Hitchens, Vanity Fair, November 2007

For the foreigners who came to fight in the Spanish War just based on their principles, please read this article in Vanity Fair and then tell me whether, even in the case that the Irak war was declared to take hold of the oil, the war was worth to have been fought. Prospect, the left-leaning British magazine has made their decision.

In March 2003, when the first images of the invasion of Irak were cast on the Spanish TV news, I had a conversation about the fairness of the war. I said that any war would cause death, but would bring a better future for the Irakis. Even if some of the reasons for the war were merely based on pursuit of wealth, that was the only way to bring a government to spend money, suffer opposition and decide fight for the freedom of other countries and that would release good.
The disolution of the UN is a courageous claim which, given how poorly the UN works, has worked and most likely will work, I support.

Friday, 5 October 2007

Lo realmente maléfico de la democracia es la tiranía de la mayoría que gana las elecciones a través del engaño.

Lord Acton

Just before the last Spanish local elections, Xavier Sala-i-Martín reached an extraodinary conclusion "No votare Socialista" taking into account that:

If the Socialist Party were a business, its market share would be so large as to require regulators to divide or transfer a part of its enormous power.[...]When the different branches of power, which theoretically should balance and check each other, end up in the same hands our liberties are threatened by those who at times act with impunity.

Stalin supported the side of the Republican fighters in the Spanish War only because he wanted to forge the first Communist country outside the Sovietic Union. Had the National side not won the war, Spain would have been the first Sovietic satellite, even before than Poland. Almost 70 years later, after the collapse of the Sovietic Union, Spain looks more like Russia than ever.

Love and freedom.

Friday, 28 September 2007

Veggies reasoning: lack of proteins

This Mexican guy might look slightly mad, but I fully agree with his unorthodox review of veggies' arguments. I'll translate them into English (let him know previously through a comment to his post).

Veggies and vegans may do whatever they like as long as they don't bother with their arguments. Here it is what I would say if they tried to convince me:

1. Oposition to the treatment given to animals at farms.

So much that veggies turn their noses up at the ill-treatment given to animals. Are you concerned when your neighbours, your brothers are ill-treated? Are you concerned with the ill-treatment to the poor children in South West Africa?
Why on Earth are you so concerned about the animals? If they don't evolve, it is their issue. We are the "thinking" species and we evolved that way to survive. No other species minds whether we exist or not. Is the cow going to live forever if I don't eat it? If left to its own fate in the Nature, any other animal would have it as prey.

It is Nature's Law. Mankind have developed a Civilisation's Law, more generous with the weakest fellows of the species than the Nature's Law. This Civilisation's Law have developed into the Universal Declaration of HUMAN Rights. These rights are for, only for, Human Beings, because Human Beings are the only ones that can comply with the correspondent Musts and Obligations.

One has rights to the extent that has musts (the first must being to respect the rights of others).

2. Killing is bad.

Do those holy heads kill not even a mosquito or a flea? When they have their pets wormed by the vet: they are killing animals. Indeed, tapeworms, and other nice beings in the guts of our dog are animals as well. Then, wouldn't the moral conviction that killing is bad mean that the worms shouldn't be exterminated?

The statement #2 should be refined at least to say something like: killing human beings is bad.

3. Don't eat cat or dog, discrimination against other animals does not make sense.

Does that mean that if I'm shipwrecked in a desert island and the only other survivor is a puppy, I'm not going to eat it? Of course I will. My life comes first and then the life of the bag of bones. There you have the Chinese eating their portions of rats and cockroaches, and look at them, so well fed. :D

Would a wild animal have compassion for another being? They are not set to behave in an discrimate way further than "I can eat it, I can't eat it, it can eat me, it can't eat me", and precisely for that reason they don't expect anything different, indeed, they don't expect anything else. Life for a puppy does not have any transcendental shade, life for them is just a dog's life. They do not think!!!

4. It's missing in the original!! Please insert yours here.

5. Being vegetarian is healthier than eating meat.

Er, and the ham sandwich? This is the most stupid reason of all.
Let's do an exercise together: please open your mouth, now touch the two central incisors with your right hand, there is another couple of incisors next to those, y to both sides of the latter ones, there are other two teeth with a somewhat different shape (if they are not deformed). Can you feel them? They are conical and sharp, those teeth are called canines and, guess what they are for?, exactly, to tear meat, you what why? Because the human beings are carnivores as well.
We are swallowing meet since the beginning of the time and here we are. If it wasn't healthy, it wouldn't be that way. Veggies mention how good it is to refrain from meat, when the truth is the opposite: the human body needs proteins. Not only for the conservation and repairing of the muscles, proteins have lots of functions in the organism, even some at neuronal level, so veggies not only take the risk of being undernourished and decompensated, but also they may become a bit mad.
Even if they claim that there are vegetable supplements, it isn't enough. If eating meat isn't healthy, why do we get stuffed with pills and other nonsense?

6. You wouldn't kill an animal by yourself.

Does that mean that we shouldn't dress and live in houses that hadn't been done by ourselves?

7. They don't like the meat's taste or texture.

That would be the only valid excuse, apparently. But there are some that haven't tasted the meat and they are already crossing themselves.

8. Their religion promotes a vegetarian lifestyle.

The religions promote a hell lot of things. If we did everything the Holy Books say, we would be living a second Middle Age.

9. Vegetarian since he was born, doesn't want to change.

It is unlikely that a vegetarian baby could subsist without the meat's nutrients.

10. They are worried about the impact on the environment of the animal farms
for consumption by humans.

If they are really so worried about the environment, stop buying animal-tested products, stop throwing your rubbish onto the street. Animals are better off at a farm than left free: have you seen a cow surviving in the street?

This is the weakest counter-argument of the nine. However, the reason number 10 can be refuted by a number of ways. Firstly, the animal species that populate the farms have their survival ensured by the man's interest; animal species that aren't useful but put problems to the human development are in danger of extintion. That is what happens to any other struggle between similar living being species: the strongest and fittest survive.

Secondly, the impact of animal farms on the environment is lower than the impact of the crop fields or the scale of hunting needed to feed the current human population. Unless you went to the extreme of banning hunting, farming and cropping, and provoke the death of several thousands of millions of people. We would have created a world where the human being has fewer rights than the animals and other living beings!!

I guess that veggies would propose more reasons, but they would be refuted.

Love and freedom.

Thursday, 27 September 2007

Taking the piece of himself, joking about his own handicap, this crippled wheelchaired dandy, Toño, delivers one of the most impressive lessons ever.

I look up to this guy. I wonder how we may complain about our lives?

Thank God for everything you have given to me.

Love and freedom.
Catalan government's TV station TV3 bans Spanish commentators.

TV3's goal is to spread the Catalan language. Fair enough, but should TV3 reach the level of banning reporters speaking in Spanish? It looks like censorship, doesn't it? At least it is what Cataloonies said when TV3 was banned from Valencia Region. Let me recap what that Scotland-based blogger said at that time:

The regional government of the PP has finally decided to close down the transmissions of TV3 in the Valencian area. More proof, if it was needed, of the neo-fascist attitudes of the PP.

Wow!! I believe that, after TV3's decision, fair-minded Cataloonies should say that the Spanish oppressors aren't the only neo-fascists. There are many more in the Catalan government. The decision taken by the Valencian Government was silly (it limits choice), but it is similar to TV3's decision, so both should deserve the same name. However, let's leave for another time the explanation of why the word "fascism" is applied misleadingly these days.

Catalan people (as other Spaniards) are mostly lively, sensible people. There are, as well, some Catalans who are idiots (as in any other part of the world). The problem in Catalonia is that they have their whole portion of idiots governing them.

Love and freedom.

Friday, 14 September 2007

Con los biocombustibles no se ahorran emisiones de dióxido de carbono.

Hartmut Michel, El Pais (12/09/2007)

Hartmut Michel, a German biochemist laureated with the Nobel Prize of Chemistry, is ridiculously interviewed by a Spanish journalist from El Pais. He explains her that the fact that the biofuels are called with a name that contains the prefix "bio-" blessed by the progres does not turn them into any better source of energy. Did she grasp the idea at the end?? I'm not sure.

Please do not miss the sui-generis transcription of that interview by the Spanish paper, El Pais.

When will these progres learn to think reasonably before believing in new, absurd mottos? And when will the journalists start to make good the name of their profession? Where are the knowledgeable, fair reporters?
Vamos España!

That scream of support intends to encourage more than 45 million of people. Is there anything wrong with it?

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

I did my exams at last!! The control of my life (its risks and rewards) has been given back to me again!

Thank God the turmoil is over now. I don't know whether I passed them, but it didn't matter today. Just went to Green Park with some classmates and stripped my shirt off, got tanned under a lovely sunshine, got pissed, got a football and played. That made my day!!

Love and freedom.

Saturday, 8 September 2007

What should we do in relation to Zimbabwe?

Zimbabweans have long since given up hope that the South African leader - Thabo Mbeki - will put pressure on his old friend, Robert Mugabe, to reform.

Sue Lloyd-Roberts, BBC News (08/09/2007)

It's apparent that Robert Mugabe's dictatorship has produced a disaster for the Zimbabweans (black and white). These are starving, dying or fleeing the country. Do we care about Zimbabweans' agony?

What should Western developed countries do?

a) Ignore them (it's not our problem).

b) Send more (and much more!) money to Zimbabwe (which will help R.Mugabe remain in office as explained in the article).

c) Send a UN peaceforce (which will do what they know best: get rich taking advantage of the weapons European and American taxpayers have provided them with).

d) Talk and express our regret about the situation, and forget it straigth away because we are watching Al Gore's An Incovenient Truth while we have South Africa's organic vegetables for dinner (what most progres will do).

e) Send a military force to oust Mugabe from the office and try to organise the most democratic elections that can be attained in a bankrupted country (what it was attempted in Irak by (gosh!!) G.W. Bush).

You may decide. Remember that it should be in congruence with your stance in relation to other wars (even the ones that the US takes part in).

Love and freedom.

Friday, 7 September 2007

What's wrong with tall women dating short men?

The underlying thinking is not about height, therefore; it is "Who can overpower whom?" Weirdly, we still require men to be able to dominate their partner physically, even though there is no place for that in a modern relationship.

Zoe Williams, The Guardian (06/09/2007)

I don't have much problem with my height, but it's a true comment, nevertheless, about a topic that interests me most. Modern days have come (to Western-culture countries), and yet our women miss something from the old, wild times.

Monday, 3 September 2007

Following the thread about the silliness that Socialist regions feature.

I have found a survey by the CIS (Spanish Social Studies Centre) suggesting that almost all Spaniards are in favour of some sort of Communism/Socialism. Please have a look at the results of the survey (click in Resultados and please do not cry) and some comments on it.

I expected the results to be in that line, but I didn't forecast such a wide majority that holds no doubt that the Government should control prices, industry, employment, raise taxes and force the reduction of the income gap between rich and poor.

No doubt!! My godness, after litres of ink spent discussing this economic dilemma for ages, a couple of wars and millions of deaths because of the argument, disaster after disaster of each of the Communist countries... and still more than half of the Spaniards are fully convinced that the Government is the solution to all problems.

Don't they have any doubt, not even the smallest doubt after History has shown that all attempted ways of Communism have been a complete failure?

However, if this survey reflected the truth, I don't understand why the Spanish United Left party (IU) is voted by only 5% of the electorate.

I might start thinking that P.J. O'Rourke was right: Spaniards can't count above twenty.

Definitely, a Institucion Liberal de Ensenanza (Libertarian Education Institution) is urgently required in Spain.

Love and Freedom.

Spanish guts

To honour O'Rourke's description of Spanish, here you have a picture of what I have been doing this summer.

(Obviously I'm the guy running away from the cow.)

These two pics below show my courageous Grandma, 86, trekking up the Cabeza de Araya, the highest summit around her village.

(She has 4 broken vertebrae, a hip prosthesis and usually walks with crutches. Ole, esa abuela!)
Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.

P.J O'Rourke, Parliament of Whores

This sarcastic description of Spaniards by an American called PJ O'Rourke is pretty funny (and he was born in Toledo!!).

I don't agree with some bits (I can count up to 21 -twenty-one, veintiuno), but it's just a joke.

Or should we kill him as though I were a Maoist (in the 20th century), Stalinist (in the 20th century), Nazist (in the 20th century), Muslim fundamentalist (in the 21st century), or Cristian extremist (in the 16th century)?

Love and freedom.

Thursday, 16 August 2007

August in Spain

Good afternoon from Navas.

Apologies for the long time with no posts in this blog. The load of news one could talk about is endless, but time is scarce.

At the minute I write from one of my grandparents' villages in Extremadura, in the middle of Spain, where I spend my holidays. Here access to the internet can hardly be found, although now I am taking advantage of a Telecentre facility subsided by the Junta de Extremadura. As it grants the money, this government sets the rules for the Telecentres, which are obeyed with no objections. For example, each person is only allowed 90 minutes of internet connection, even if no one else is waiting to use the computers. That's why there are five out of 8 computers switched off and children who were playing with them have been kicked out by the Telecentro assistant.

This blind following of leaders and the subsided functioning of virtually everything are some of the traits of Socialist-style regions, as this one is. The same way that Franco dictated Spain's trajectory for less than 40 years, the Socialist Party have colonised every aspect of the peoples living in Extremadura and Andalucia for already 24 and 28 years, respectively.

The situation with the neo-Communists is even worse in other regions of Spain and countries of the world. Just yesterday the great, never-misled Hugo Chavez proposed some
reforms to Venezuela's Constitution delivering a living lesson on how to dump a nation into a dictatorship with the applause of all progres of the world.

Monday, 16 July 2007

Sunday at Bewl Water

As I said in a previous post, on Sunday, July the 8th I sneaked out of our beloved, old London and exchanged my everyday march dodging people accross the swarming town for a more relaxing excursion to the countryside.

Faces glowing with emotion, a bunch of 15 people took the rusty 9.47 train into the East Sussex county and set off for a nice, easy walk from Wadhurst to Bewl Water. We were a fairly mixed group, representative of the variety of London, led by a conscious German PhD student (the guy pretending to read the map in the first picture).

The surprisingly beautiful countryside that surrounds the capital boasts lovely paths through fields and woods.

After the 3-hour trek, we reached the shore by Bewl Water. Bewl Water is a reservoir completed in 1975 in the valley of the River Teise straddling the boundary between East Sussex and Kent. Apparently it is now the largest lake in south east England.

The walkers settled down by the shore to rest for a bit and, shortly after, everyone had spread out their own supplies of food and drinks while a tiny, controlled fire for the barbeque was being prepared.

The afternoon lingered between interesting afterlunch conversations, strolls by the lake, snores from people enjoying a well-deserved nap, and a couple of brave adventure-seekers who did not hesitate to amuse the crowd by taking a refreshing bath.

As the evening sunshine smoothed the edges of the landscape, we headed back towards the train station. We had the chance to have a glance at the local wildlife.

Unfortunately, we missed the train to London for seconds and we had to wait for the next one to come an hour later. However, the hourglass did give time for funny games.

When we arrived at London Bridge train station, it was already a dark night. We called it a day and enthusiastically agreed to meet soon for another walking trip. We have to shake our butts, don't we?

As usual, I shall not leave you, dear reader, without a clip with those most embarrasing moments that I so much treasure.

Thursday, 12 July 2007

July in London

Good evening from London.

I am fairly busy at the minute going to college and dealing with the outstanding points of an overloaded work agenda, so I haven't been able to write in the last few days. However, since an healthy work/life balance must be achieved as part of any successful pursuit of happiness, these July weekends have been delightfully empty of work and full of business.

As part of their well-deserved holidays, my brother Inigo and my cousin Alvaro have accompanied me in my London life for a week. It seems that they enjoyed the experience and freedom of this never-ending, never-still city even though they have endured an atrocious weather and ruthless jokes due to their poor English.

After the rains and hail-storms made me forget it was already mid-July, at last the sunny weather came out eventually and I took advantage of the weekend of July the 7th, 2007. Unfortunately, my relatives had already left after having suffered that hail-storm in Battersea Park pictured in the links above.

On Friday, July the 6th I went to see the melodramatic movie La vie en rose (La Môme in French), the story-tale of Edit Piaf. Although Marion Cotillard's featuring of Edit Piaf is remarkable and made my female French companion cry with emphaty, the overall result didn't strike me as a memorable film. There are already a few films exploiting the hard and chaotic lives of singers and musicians (Walk the line, Ray). Besides, the storyline jumped back and fro so often that the plot was difficult to follow. Besides, the film would have benefited from a shorter length, although its duration might have been due to the representation of several complete songs. An excellent decision was to maintain the original voice of Edith Piaf in the soundtrack.

On Saturday Angy and I joined the 4-million strong crowd that crammed in Central London parks (Hyde, Green and St. James) to feel part of the most important cycling competition: the Tour of France. We stood only 30 metres away from the finish line and enjoyed under the sunshine and the fresh breeze while admiring the speed of the (somewhat dopped?) cyclists.

Finally on Sunday I went for an exploration walk into the wild South East England, more exactly, the Kent County. My aim was, notwithstanding mocking comparisons to the likes of Livingstone or Cook, to discover the legendary lake known as Bewl Water.

I would like to thank to the terrorists of any kind for the consideration of letting Britain live in peace at least for the weekend of the anniversary of the 7/7 bombings. We'll bury them amidst the dust of the History.

Let's remember the victims.

Love and freedom.

Monday, 9 July 2007

Africa cries for help

Where do you place the African person as a thinker, a creator of wealth? - an African man asks Bono.

Err... I believe that Africans' music is their DNA. And Celtic music is basically African. - the singer attempts an awkward defence of his flawed, fashionable "Africa credo", making the audience giggle.

While I am reading the latest issue of Vanity Fair, edited by U2's lead singer Bono, I come to a halt to read a more sensible article in begging him to stop aiding Africa.

Following the reflections mentioned in a previous entry, the latter article, dissonant with the current trend of charity, argues that Westerns should swap the "progre" attitude towards Africa for the one that mean the real progress if we actually care about it. Western countries should stop behaving as Africa's tutors and start listening to the continent that gave birth to them. The motto It's time to let Africa imagine its own future heads some radical ideas that could be summarised with the corolary "And it's time to let Africa EARN their imagined future".

Indeed, the only way Africa will develop and create wealth is if it can attract foreign capital and trade its goods on the world market like every other economically successful does.

If you make Africans rich, they'll be less poor.

Idriss Mohammed, African financer

Africa cries for help... to get rid of the perjudicial aid.

About Vanity Fair's perspective on Africa, I'll talk soon.

Wednesday, 4 July 2007

Mitterrand supported Hutus assasins

Liberte, egalite, fraterni.. what?!? I can't believe what I'm reading!! Francois Mitterrand supported the Hutus assasins who perpetrated the 1994 Rwandan genocide (French article here, subscription required). Some declassified French documents uncover a long-suspected secret: Mitterrand let, if not helped, the Hutus axe almost a million Africans' lives in little more than 3 months in 1994. A mass extermination carried out at a similar pace as the Jews' Holocaust by the German Nazis.

Mitterrand, the last French Socialist president, former Spanish Socialist Prime Minister Felipe Gonzalez's personal friend; Mitterrand, the one who brought France into the group of countries with atomic arsenal; Mitterrand, the one who brought France into chaos in the early 80's with his absurd left-wing policies. Oh Mitterrand, another fallen leftist hero!

During the press conference at the closing of the 1990 France-Africa Summit hosted in La Baule, France, Mitterrand announced that France’s traditional and longstanding aid would be cooler towards regimes that behave in an authoritarian manner and enthusiastic towards those who move boldly forward towards democratisation (La Baule speech). However, simply put, Mitterrand is just another French President caught helping killers with the aim at maintaining the declining French influence in the world. He is just another Socialist politician who speaks up idealistic and democratic policies at the same time as they allow and support crimes.

Another detail of France's over-hyped grandeur is fake.

Monday, 2 July 2007

Las nuevas 7 Maravillas del Mundo

Vota a la Alhambra en Quedan solo 4 dias.

Espero que ya sepais que el dia siete de julio de 2007 (07.07.07) se van a proclamar en Lisboa las nuevas Siete Maravillas del Mundo, puesto que 6 de las 7 Maravillas del Mundo Antiguo han desaparecido. Las Piramides de Giza mantendran su estatus.

Las nuevas siete maravillas estan siendo seleccionadas entre 20 candidatas elegidas entre cientos de monumentos repartidos por todo el mundo. Entre esas 21 esta la Alhambra de Granada (el unico monumento seleccionado en Espana). La seleccion se realiza mediante votacion a traves de internet o SMS.

Ademas de ser la mayor votacion del mundo hasta la fecha, esta iniciativa genera muchas cuestiones culturales y sociologicas interesantes. Cabe preguntarse: ¿el ranking de resultados de los monumentos obedece más al esfuerzo de cada país o al mérito artístico y simbólico como maravilla mundial? Segun Chimosoler hay una correlación entre los contenidos, las redes sociales, el porcentaje de visitas de cada país al portal de votación y el avance de los resultados de la votación. No debemos pecar de ingenuos, el exito es fruto de un esfuerzo de participacion y de una campana cultural y turistica. Paradojicamente no son los paises mas desarrollados los que mas votan, sino los iberoamericanos y los chinos, y por eso sus monumentos copan las primeras posiciones. Podemos seguir el trafico hacia en el portal Alexa del grupo Amazon.

El ultimo ranking pone a la Alhambra en el puesto 11. El que haya visitado la Alhambra seguro que opinara que merece ser reconocida como una maravilla del mundo. Por eso, y por las alegrias que nos traera en el futuro a Granada y a Espana, debemos conseguir que la Alhambra acabe entre las 7 primeras y sea proclamada una de las nuevas Siete Maravillas del Mundo.

Vota ahora mismo a la Alhambra en

Pasa este mensaje a todos tus contactos a ver si entre todos conseguimos que la Alhambra quede entre las 7 primeras.

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

The world's top 50 footballers

The righteous London-based newspaper The Times has published a faulty selection of the world's top 50 footballers, shortlisted by an Italian journalist called Gabriele Marcotti. This one has come out as a very difficult list to put together as the article's pompous title was not defined accurately: is it the world's top or the European leagues' top? Are they the best footballers last year or their performance in previous/prospect years also count? Can only those playing in major leagues score high or leagues in Croatia, Holland and France mind as well?

Hundreds of comments have been posted showing the different views on football around Europe. However, thanks to the fact that TV stations in the European countries display similar events and, in particular in football, they are focused on the Premiership, La Liga and Il Calcio, Europeans hold not so different opinions as you could think beforehand. Most of the comments agree in few names whose rankings should have been different. For instance, according to the commentators, Giggs, Cannavaro (although ill-performing in La Liga), Kanoute, and Villa or Riquelme should have been included, whereas Torres, Shevchenko, Neville should have been left out. The ranking for other players would have also varied: Drogba and Van Nistelrooy scoring higher, Ballack and Lampard lower.

Due to the nationality of the journalist and the paper, the list seems biased towards Italian and Premiership footballers. Nevertheless, it gives a cue to the most interesting, innocuous, tough-battled discussion for a pub's night.
Some pictures showing the repression in Iran.

Not only "estos americanos (digo, romanos) estan majaretas" (Obelix dixit).
Competition has served Europe well; Sarkozy has not.

Financial Times, June 25, 2007

I would just make a slight change to this article's title: "Competition has served Europe well; France has not".

Friday, 22 June 2007

Shame on Zapatero

Journalist -«Did the Government have meetings with ETA during the last campaign?».

Deputy Prime Minister De la Vega- «None. Absolutely none».

Palacio de la Moncloa "Theatre" (15/06/2007)

Since the moment he made it into the Spanish politics stardom, Spanish Prime Minister J.L. Rodriguez Zapatero has tried to play a double game with everyone. For example, regarding the foreign terrorism issue, he brought back the Spanish soldiers from Irak only to send them later to Afganistan and Lebanon. In regards to the ETA terrorism, he signed the Pacto por las libertades y contra el terrorismo with former Spanish Prime Minister Aznar at the same time he authorised PSOE's Basque branch to meet ETA twenty-five times breaching the agreement with Aznar. The Spanish newspaper El Pais surprisingly describes part of it in its article of the ignominy. J.L.Rodriguez thought that, featuring the Bambi character of the Spanish politics, he would be able to tame the terrorist hyena at the same time as betraying the Spaniards. However, ETA-Batasuna does not like being fooled, but keeping on doing the only thing they can: bombing innocents. I only wish that neither the majority of the Spanish electorate admit to be cheated but say "Never again" to Prime Minister Rodriguez.

J.L. Rodriguez thinks that this is a fight between two equally wrong groups: Francoist people and ETA. He does not accept that the Spanish Civil War finished 68 years ago. He does not understand that the centrifugal nationalism is the main threat to the Spanish Democracy. He does not believe that a united, stronger Spain is the best way to help Spaniards. He would not mind that Spain disappeared. And that is the point where he coincides most with the terrorists.

ETA-Batasuna's sole goal is to beat Spain, to seize the power in the Basque Country and to impose a totalitarian state. But these killers are professional liers and, believe it or not, they claim to be the poor victims that challenge the evil established power battling for the rights of the defenceless, oppressed citizens (interview in Spanish here).

For 40 years ETA-Batasuna have used propaganda and managed the political rythm as another threatening weapon. They are doing it again now. However, the long list of articles in the ETA-Batasuna controlled Gara newspaper leaking the conversations held between the Spanish government and the terrorist gang ETA-Batasuna should also be enough to embarrass every supporter of the current Spanish government: Gara tells that the Government agreed to re-name murders and bombings as "accidents" and that an institutional declaration of a democratic country's Prime Minister had been dictated by a terrorist group!! De la Vega may deny the information published in Gara as many times as she want, but definitely she is not as skillful a lier as current Home Office Minister Rubalcaba. If the Government does not believe the ETA-Batasuna's words in a newspaper, how are they going to believe that the killers would comply with any bloody-peace agreement!!

The way ETA-Batasuna is playing with Zapatero's government can only be compared to the way Zapatero's goverment is playing with the Spanish people. The fact that Aznar gave silly gifts to ETA and nationalists and held one meeting with ETA killers does not ease Zapatero's indignity. What Aznar did was also wrong: the ETA's "ceasefire" in 1998 was another truce-trap as former Spanish Home Office Mayor Oreja alerted all the time through. But Aznar fixed his mistakes by strengthening the siege around ETA-Batasuna to put it into its weakest position ever. Unfortunately, the terrorist leaders of ETA-Batasuna cannot believe their luck and now enjoy the power they have re-gained thanks to Zapatero's shameful behaviour.

Imagine that, when Hitler was already hidden in his bunker, Petain came running like a lame duck and pushed De Gaulle aside to be able to offer the Nazi leader a political agreement that said "Holocaust was an accident" and let him again invade Holland and half France. This is exactly what Zapatero has done with ETA-Batasuna. It simply doesn't make sense for anyone who is not blindly biased against the survival of Spain as we know it. That is why I say: shame on untrustworthy Zapatero and shame on the Spaniards who support him on this matter.

Saturday, 16 June 2007

Apologies for saying nothing from my own crop about such a crucial matter for Spain's politics as the failure of the Government tackling the terrorist threat, but last two weeks have been very busy. Fortunately, as time passes and events happen, there are more people who think in a similar way and some of them have time and tools to write their opinions. People from various political orientations. The following article requires subscription.

Gregorio Moran, Esperando a Godot, presidente

UNA ORGANIZACIÓN QUE estaba contra las cuerdas hace dos años me temo que ha dejado de estarlo. Y eso hay que asumirlo y dejarse de pamplinas. Usted nos debe una explicación. Y por eso quiero decirlo ahora, cuando no sabemos aún quiénes caeremos en alguno de 'todos los frentes'. [...]

O sea que el presidente del Gobierno, señor Zapatero, se ha tirado casi dos años negociando entre dimes y diretes con ETA. Hasta aquí lo entiendo todo, porque hay muchas razones cruzadas. Primera y principal, el presidente no tiene ni zorra idea del País Vasco y ha de amarrarse a las orientaciones de Jesús Eguiguren, auténtica fuente negociadora del llamado retóricamente proceso de paz en Euskadi. Todo joven político con aspiraciones de estadista y absoluta ignorancia sobre el asunto, está convencido de que el tema vasco y muy en concreto ETA, la resuelven ellos con la lengua, basta con la lengua, y si fuera necesario con el talento y la experiencia de su ágil muñeca negociadora. Luego, cuando se dan una hostia monumental, llámense Carod Rovira o Zapatero, alegan siempre la misma frivolidad, les sale el lado filisteo que llevan dentro y nos tratan de conmover apelando a su buena voluntad y mejor intención y a su ansia por la paz y el fin del terrorismo. No sé si ustedes alguna vez han tenido la ocasión de hablar con un jefe terrorista, yo sí, y les puedo decir que de creerles en su hora emotiva nadie estaría más interesado que ellos por acabar de una vez con tanta sangre, y poder dedicarse al huerto, y cuidar de los niños y de los perritos y de los cerezos en flor. A mí, y a mis años, esto no me impresiona nada. Tampoco hay ni un solo dirigente mafioso cuyo sueño íntimo y reiteradamente manifestado no sea convertirse en un empresario legal y simpático y dejar atrás tanta matanza. Lo del corazón tierno sirve para los culebrones, por eso tienen tanto éxito en los países más violentos.

Veamos entonces, dos años de negociaciones es algo que forzándolo mucho podría ser justificable si hubiera algún resultado. Pero como no hay ninguno, digo más, como lo que hay es una situación de una gravedad como nunca anteriormente habíamos afrontado, se da en decir que al menos se ha logrado algún tiempo sin muertos. No sé si se dan ustedes cuenta de que este argumento es contraproducente para quien lo expresa, no solamente porque quiere decir lo contrario de lo que pretende - una organización terrorista que no mata durante tres años y que no entrega las armas, significa que se está preparando para volver a matar con mayor capacidad de fuego- pero es que además, si alguien se ampara en este argumento se obliga a asumir los muertos que vengan.

Esto es lo que me ha dejado la convicción de ser idiota. La incapacidad del presidente Zapatero para admitir que no sólo se ha equivocado sino que ha sido un irresponsable de tal envergadura que más de uno de nosotros llegó a pensar que tenía algún as en la manga y que iba a sacarlo en el momento más intrincado de la partida. Que va; no era un tahur, era un recluta. En el sueldo y la responsabilidad de un presidente de Gobierno no hay lugar para hacer el ridículo; puede haberlo para equivocarse y por eso yo esperaba que al menos dejara una ventana abierta para su bisoñez y pidiera disculpas. Pero no, nada de eso. Todo lo contrario. A lo hecho, pecho. Y si nos parecía poco la imagen de buen muchacho del talante y la gracia en el encaje, hete aquí que reaparece mandón y arrogante. Inaudito.

Cuando el 23 de septiembre del año pasado tres etarras encapuchados, dos de ellos armados de fusiles ametralladores, gritaron en euskera "la lucha no es el pasado sino el presente y el futuro" y dispararon al aire en pleno mitin público de Oiartzun, ninguno de los que sabemos un poco de esto pudimos superar nuestra perplejidad. Eso no había osado hacerlo ETA nunca; la unión de público en lugar abierto y uso de armas largas fue el sueño de la militancia etarra, porque era algo común en el IRA irlandés que ellos nunca habían logrado. Desde que ETA, en la época de Zumalde El Cabra,tomó a las 7 de la mañana del 1 º de mayo de 1966 el pueblecito de Garay, jamás alguien había presenciado algo similar. Cualquiera de nosotros, sin credencial alguna de experto pagado con fondos negros o blancos, sencillamente con el conocimiento que da la veteranía en el seguimiento de la cosa, hubiera aconsejado prepararse para el final y cerrar cualquier facilidad para que se subieran aún más los humos. Pues ¡todo lo contrario, no pasa nada!. Divisiones en la cúpula etarra. ¿Quiénes eran esos talentos que veían lo que querían ver? Como ciudadano tengo derecho a saberlo, y si no tuviéramos una prensa de bandería, su obligación sería investigarlo.

Pero no acabó ahí, unos días más tarde, en octubre, ETA roba 350 pistolas de notable precisión. No son de juguete sino armas especialmente indicadas para matar. ¿Quién que no sea un gilipollas integral puede pensar que la negociación del proceso de paz sigue su curso impetuoso hacia la kantiana paz universal, si una de las dos partes que se sientan en la mesa, no ya adquiere, cosa cada día más difícil por falta de numerario, sino que roba en una fábrica-almacén francés? Y siguen sentaditos, como si tal cosa, mientras la fiera se alimenta. Divisiones en la cúpula. Baja Ternera y sube Txeroki. En términos militares, caballeros, un comportamiento como el de los negociadores por parte del Gobierno exigiría un consejo de guerra que depurara responsabilidades. No es una broma, ni tomarse unos potes o echar un mus; hay muchos muertos sobre la mesa y se preparan muchos más. Una organización que estaba contra las cuerdas hace dos años me temo que ha dejado de estarlo. Y eso hay que asumirlo y dejarse de pamplinas.

En fin, luego vino el atentado de Barajas. Todo pensado para asustar sin sangre, pero los activistas de ETA son gente de posibles, hasta las más colgados saben lo que es comer bien y dormir mejor. Aquellos tiempos del militante estilo De Juana Chaos, viviendo en una DKW y lavándose en los bares, terminaron. A ningún jefe se le había ocurrido que los sudacas aún pueden dormir en un coche aparcado en un parking, donde el monóxido de carbono quema casi tanto como la titadine. La nueva militancia etarra, y esto es un dato de gran valor estratégico, desconoce lo que es un pobre. Y murieron dos ecuatorianos, pero tampoco pasó nada, porque seguían vendiendo la división en la cúpula. La información ahora la hacen los gabinetes de prensa y los becarios. Por eso los mismos que vendieron la teoría de la conspiración universal para la derrota del PP, ahora intimidan al personal con los comandos etarras formados en Latinoamérica. Una idea de gilipollas; hoy día es imposible pasar más de tres militantes más allá de la frontera con Venezuela. Aún está el IRA pagando las consecuencias de aquellos tres killers profesionales que se acercaron a Colombia para ampliar sus conocimientos y llenar las arcas.

Estamos esperando a Godot, presidente. Lloraremos a los muertos todos juntos, y eso está muy bien, pero como ciudadano yo exijo que esta película suya truncada tenga responsables. No se pueden hacer las cosas de rositas, alegando que uno es bueno y tiene ojitos claros. O sea que si gana, es usted la hostia, y si fracasa, es que no le hemos ayudado lo suficiente y que el PP le ha puesto bastones en las ruedas y que el enemigo etarra se ha equivocado.He escuchado perplejo sus declaraciones ante Sor Gabilondo. Perplejo por usted y por el periodismo, a partes iguales. ¿Será que nuestro destino es lamer las insignias del poder? Ni siquiera ponérnoslas, sólo darles lustre. No había visto ni oído una cosa semejante desde aquella otra, imborrable en mi memoria, de Georgina Cisquella al presidente González. Ya sé, ya sé que Carlos Dávila logró con Aznar cimas inmarcesibles, pero Dávila pertenece a otra especie que tiene nombre pero es muy feo y figura en los libros de Ciencias Naturales. Ver a Gabilondo preguntando a un presidente que no sólo no estaba dispuesto a responder a ninguna de las preguntas, sino que tenía un desprecio absoluto por aquel señor - la edad debería obligarles a respetarnos cuando ejercemos de abadesas- que no sabía cómo superar el ridículo de ser a la vez un cursi y un cobarde.

¿Saben por qué me sentí un idiota a mis 59 años? Porque una mafia ha decidido volver a matar y ha tenido la desvergüenza - no hay mafioso tímido- de declarar en su comunicado del 4 de junio que abre "todos los frentes". Lo de "todos los frentes" me ha conmovido hasta el sarcasmo, porque eso significa que nos pueden matar de un disparo en la nuca, en la sien, en la boca o en los cojones. O volarnos, que es la única manera que tenemos los no creyentes para llegar al cielo. Es decir, en todos los frentes. Yo no he votado en mi vida al PP, y puedo asegurar que no lo haré nunca, porque hay cosas que no forman parte de uno y nada más, no tiene más misterio, ni trascendencia. Y cuando veo a la tripleta de Mayor Oreja, Aznar y Rajoy, no digamos ya la de Acebes, Zaplana y Rajoy, me siento ajeno. Eso no va conmigo. Cada palo debe aguantar su vela. El chantaje del PP es una cosa, y el trágala es otra. Estamos esperando a Godot, señor Presidente. Pero aquí las responsabilidades se pagan, porque están en el salario. Usted nos debe una explicación. Y por eso quiero decirlo ahora, cuando esperamos a Godot y no sabemos aún quiénes, amigos o adversarios, caeremos en alguno de "todos los frentes". Probablemente no la dará, pero eso le retrata. Por eso usted no entiende el desprecio absoluto, omnímodo, que sentimos algunos hacia todos ustedes.

This is the least someone who is not a complete fool could say. And much more from those groups who claimed so much for the Prestige disaster and the Irak war. Fairness, my friends. He who spoils, pays.

Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Let everyone take advantage of their own opportunities

This article has made me think twice. I hope it interests you too.
An African young economist blames Europeans again for most problems in Africa, but this time at least he is honest and presents a unorthodox view that I like and approve.

In my opinion, the Western economic system is the most developed and convenient in the History. We should improve it and encourage others into it. Can anyone explain me what people obtain by preventing it from working properly or just demonstrating against it? They don't understand this: If you want to go against the system or change it, TAKE ADVANTAGE OF IT.

This idea of taking advantage of the good is something that former communist countries' leaders have finally understood. I'm afraid that most of those who supported some ideas that proved erroneous in the 20th century have not yet admitted defeat and will never accept that they were(are) wrong. They simply changed topic to cry about.

PS: I don't agree with the G8 summits, though. Nowadays, technology allows remote meetings as useful as expensive congresses.

Monday, 11 June 2007

La misión del Estado no es educar, sino garantizar el derecho a la educación y la libertad de enseñanza.

Ignacio Sánchez Cámara

Sunday, 10 June 2007



After York and the bus trip across Yorkshire, we arrived at Whitby.

Whitby is a fishing port on the North Eastern Yorkshire coast. The sea invades every corner of Whitby and fills it with the exotic flavours of dreamed lands. The History of Whitby is rich with the adventures and misfortunes of its sailors.

Whitby's undoubtedly most famous sailor is Captain James Cook.

This is one of the most embarrassing moments of my week, and, dear reader, if you have followed me up to here, then you deserve to watch it. Feel free to click in and have a laugh.

(It is astonishing what a content-generator needs to do to keep up the view ratings!)

The following day the two litte travellers set their way back to London. First, we followed the coast down to Scarborough, passing the tiny, cosy Robin Hood's Bay. As you may appreciate in this video, it was a pretty windy day, and the North Sea hinted its strength. went to

Noche de Liga

Si Van Nistelrooy marca otra vez y vemos a Tamudo celebrando otro gol, me subo a la ermita de Santo Toribio de Liebana de rodillas!!

Alvaro Alvarez, minuto 40 de la segunda parte del Zaragoza-R.Madrid

Good morning from London.

This Saturday has been one of the best nights of football in my short life. After suffering like any 'colchonero' (if Madrid won La Liga, they should wear red and white shirts next year), disappointed with another Liga lost again, this time so close to the Cibeles, I've ended up getting to my knees and yelling 'gool, gooool' and hopping and screaming 'Tamudo, seleccion!!'. Three years with no trophy is too long and I needed one of these exciting impulses of limited hooliganism.

You can read any Spanish paper today, Sunday June the 10th, for a detailed description of what happened, and I have to go to bed so I'll only say a couple of things.

David Beckham is an idol here in England, and Brits are happy that madridistas respect him a lot and would like him to stay. He might not be the best player, but he fights every ball and sweats his shirt every single match, and that's the first thing requested to deserve playing at the Santiago Bernabeu.

And that Dutchman, 25 goals, no promises at the beginning of the season like Ronaldo. He simply scores, scooping every ball that happens to be on his way, he is simply the new Raul Van Nistelrooy.

Everyone in Spain recalls those 3 leagues that Barcelona won on the last match: 2 lost by R.Madrid in Tenerife (Buyo's nightmares) and the other one lost by Deportivo de la Coruna (Djukic's own nightmare). It could still happen the same this season, but people expected Zaragoza to be the most difficult hurdle for Madrid.

Estoo... Si el Madrid gana la Liga, me subo a la ermita de Santo Toribio de Liebana de rodillas!!

Alvaro Alvarez, minuto 45 de la segunda parte del Zaragoza-R.Madrid

See you next Saturday!

Saturday, 9 June 2007

THERE ONCE LIVED, in a sequestered part of the county of Devonshire, one Mr Godfrey Nickleby: a worthy gentleman, who, taking it into his head rather late in life that he must get married, and not being young enough or rich enough to aspire to the hand of a lady of fortune, had wedded an old flame out of mere attachment, who in her turn had taken him for the same reason. Thus two people who cannot afford to play cards for money, sometimes sit down to a quiet game for love.

Charles Dickens, Nicholas Nickleby

I've started reading Nicholas Nickleby by Charles Dickens, the 1867 English edition as published by Oxford University Press.

Around 1,000 pages. I'll be happy if I finish it before next year!

Thursday, 7 June 2007

York Minster

Good morning from London.

As said in a previous post, the York Minster is a majestic Gothic cathedral, seat of the Archbishop of York, who is the second highest office in the Church of England. Visiting the site, I learnt that this estate had hosted five different buildings: a Roman fortress to defend the Britannia Inferior's capital, a wooden church to baptise King Edwin of Northumbria, a stone structure for Saint Wilfrid and the Benedictines, a Norman cathedral, and, finally, the Gothic cathedral that we know, which has been repaired several times due to fires and collapses.

Furthermore, I learnt that it was in this Minster that Constantine Augustus was proclaimed Emperor by the legions following his father's death. In 313 A.D., the Emperor Constantine the Great would promulgate the Edict of Milan in the Western Roman Empire (and Licinius Augustus in the East), establishing religious freedom for all in the Roman Empire.

[...]it has pleased us to remove all conditions whatsoever, which were in the rescripts formerly given to you officially, concerning the Christians and now any one of these who wishes to observe Christian religion may do so freely and openly, without molestation.[...]we have also conceded to other religions the right of open and free observance of their worship for the sake of the peace of our times, that each one may have the free opportunity to worship as he pleases; this regulation is made we that we may not seem to detract from any dignity or any religion.

Constantine Augustus, Edict of Milan

Although Romans had been very liberal in general with the religions of the conquered peoples (they even included the new gods into their pantheon), they persecuted the Christians from an early stage. With the Edict of Milan, the right to observe one's own religious beliefs openly and freely was granted formally and for all within the limits of the Roman Empire. As another example of History's spiral path, please mind that we are still struggling to understand that right and make it universal 2000 years later. However, I should underline that this right was conceded by the Roman Emperors for the sake of the peace of our times and due to a number of factors.

At the time of Constantine, the power of the Roman Empire was already languishing and it wasn't capable to enforce any longer the state religion that supported the emperors' god-given right to rule and hence the Empire's unity. Immigrants, barbarians and conquered peoples practised their own customs, uses and beliefs. At the same time, the moral of most pure Roman citizens decayed but many others were appealled by new faiths claiming for more orthodox lifestyles. In contrast with the existing trend for lust and power, the Christianism offered a religion of love and justice as well as solidarity and sacrifice. After having been persecuted for 300 years, the admirable behaviour of the first Christians finally convinced Emperor Constantine to adapt to the reality for the sake of the Empire. Firstly, the observance of the Christianism was admitted; secondly, it was accepted that Christians were in the power; thirdly, the Emperor himself converted and was baptised; finally, the Christianism was institutionalised as the new official religion by Emperor Theodosious.

All these steps were taken wisely by the late Roman governors as it could be seen after the fall of the Western Roman Empire less than 200 years later. The Germanic tribes admired the Roman culture and accepted the pre-eminence of the Christianism and so they adopted both. However, the new occupants were divided and under their rule, the culture decayed dramatically. In this depressing situation, the supremacy of the Catholic Church helped conserve the Roman legacy. On one hand, the unity of the Church supported a certain degree of homogeneity in the traditions among the European nations, as there was no other power strong enough to impose its own leadership. On the other hand, the labour of the monasteries as islands of wisdom and custodies of the knowledge prevented from losing most of the classic culture (although it is true that much was not added). The Catholic Church always considered itself the Roman Church (with its connotations of universality) and thus the attached Roman culture perdured through the centuries.

Spring Bank Holiday

The Spring Bank Holiday (May 27th, 2007) enables Londoners to head out for the countryside to breathe a lungful of fresh air or for the coast to get the cherished genuine tan (even the eternal supply of fake tan lotion runs out after a long winter). Thus, as good Londoners, Angy and I got up early last Saturday (with barely a 2-hour sleep after my last minute hard work) and took a cab for King's Cross station.

The Flying Scotsman train brought us quickly to York, the ancient capital of northern England. This beautiful medieval town is flooded with tourists eager to burn the buttons of their digital cameras at the sights of the famous York Minster or to splash out on the silliest souvenirs available at the quantly cobbled Shambles.

York Minster is a superb Gothic cathedral which truly deserves a visit to understand why it is called the "church of the windows". York's popular pattiserie, Betty's, offered yammy sweets which we smuggled into the Cafe Nero where we had a coffee while I completed my work. In the evening, we popped into an alternative cyber-pub, Evil Eye, before wandering around until all restaurants were closed in this early dining country. We ended up at an Italian restaurant with awful food and an even worse manager.

On Sunday we jumped on a bus for a trip through the North York Moors National Park. We stopped at the unexpected Castle Howard, just 5 miles from York, and it really amazed us: such a rich palace surrounded by gardens and lakes looked like a small Versailles in northern England. Unfortunately, soon after it started raining, so the picturesque villages and sheep-crammed landscapes appeared blurred through the windows of our old suffering bus, which rode up and down the hills until reaching the village where we would spend our second night: Whitby.

Monday, 4 June 2007

The 21st century's main question

Why are you still having this pointless debate about the abortion issue if that question will be answered individually by every woman at the very moment she faces it? Instead, you- men- should be figuring out what will be your mission in the 21st century's world. Women are finally at the same level as men and, even more, have begun to take the reins of the power. They have realised that the only way to obtain the same rights as men have (and anything they wish) is to demand and fight dismayless for them. Men, instead, are still either living in a unreal man-led bubble or bewilderly watching their resolute female counterparts acting.

Adrian el Romano during a chemistry lesson.

Once upon a time in my High School (a private, Catholic one), my chemistry teacher, Adrian, noticed that my classmates and I were still heated up by a discussion on abortion held in the previous lesson and said the words written above at the beginning of this post. Apart from some points with which I don't agree, the comment baffled me and led me to find out my own goals and mission as a man.

Although it is true that each woman will ultimately decide whether to have an abortion or not, it is always a good idea to spend a bit of time thinking about it. Considering that religious schools are always accused of lacking debate, I approved that ours showed a certain understanding towards the youth's pursuit of their true beliefs. We were young and those debate lessons were useful for exchanging opinions and making our minds up. Obviously, the priests took part and explained the Catholic Church's doctrine: the church has exactly the same rights to express their opinions as any other lobby since the 1977 Spanish Constitution allows the freedom of speech for everyone, even if they are wrong.

I have to go to bed now, but I'll talk about all this in the future.

Sunday, 3 June 2007

La batalla de las palabras

Ante una desgracia como un atentado terrorista, la respuesta popular usualmente es "menos palabras y más hechos". Sería maravilloso que las fuerzas de seguridad desarticulasen completamente todas las organizaciones terroristas, pero es dificil detener a un hatajo de alimañas excitadas contra víctimas indefensas.

En cambio, no debemos subestimar el poder de las palabras, porque las palabras convencen a la gente y la mueve a obrar hechos. Las lenguas inculturizan, educan y esclavizan. Con el latín se romanizó el mundo; con el castellano se unificó España; con el catalán ricos empresarios apoyados por insensatos pobretones pretenden disgregar esa unión; la ETA y Batasuna nos consuelan diciendo que están matando a personas por el bien del vasco.

Dicen que no habia libertad de expresion durante la dictadura. Los gamberros que organizaron la banda terrorista ETA decian matar en defensa de la libertad de expresion del pueblo vasco. Hace un tiempo conocí un matrimonio jubilado de Rentería que me aseguró que vivían tranquilos porque a ellos, que no estorbaban la estrategia etarra ni tenían cargo público, no les pasaría nada. Vivian tranquilos porque no utilizaban su derecho a la palabra. ?Cabe mayor degradacion de la libertad? ?Puede alguien explicarme que mejora ha obtenido este matrimonio de Renteria con la Transicion? ?Que diferencia hay entre esto que sucede ahora en el Pais Vasco y lo que sucedia durante la dictadura franquista?

Los espanoles se atribuyeron el derecho a la libertad de expresion mediante la Constitucion Espanola de 1977. Yo no vivi la epoca de Franco, pero veo que en el Pais Vasco los mejores articulos de la Constitucion Espanola todavia no han entrado en vigor.

Esta respuesta del matrimonio de Renteria es la mayor victoria de ETA en la sociedad: ha convencido a la mitad de los espanoles de que la única forma de paz consiste en dejarle hacer, como los padres permiten a los niños hacer lo que quieran con tal de que no den la lata. Los nacionalistas y los etarras han ganado la batalla de las palabras y, dado que estos espanoles ilusos eligen la rendicion antes que la lucha bajo el imperio de la ley, los enemigos de Espana tambien estan ganando la de los hechos.

Tuesday, 29 May 2007

Do you tell any difference between the Mossos d'Esquadra and Franco's police force? I do: Franco's police served Franco's interest and Mossos d'Esquadra are at Catalan government's service. (How smart I am!!¬¬).

In any case, the results of all this mess with the regional police is bigger public expenditure, greater power kept at Catalan government's hands, less co-ordination between Spanish security forces, and, in general, small improvement for the society's sake.

Friday, 25 May 2007

Do you really think that this party (for avoidance of doubt, PSOE) should be in the government? If so, please explain it to me thoroughly (and slowly) because I don't get it. I know that Spaniards like peace too much, but I don't think that they do to such a limit that they prefer go begging the terrorists to stop instead of fighting them. At least, that's not my case.

Aznar's support of the Irak war didn't represent what Spanish electorate wanted, and his party was ditched (although they wouldn't have been without the Madrid blast). It would be a shame that Rodriguez's behaviour represented current Spanish people's feelings. But if it didn't, then he should be ditched as well. There has been a enough number of stupid acts by the government. I want no more murdered people by the terrorists of ETA-Batasuna. There had been enough of them, ENOUGH TO BE FED UP. IT'D BE STUPID THAT SPAIN NEED ANOTHER ONE TO UNDERSTAND IT.

My God, I can't stand what I see. It's disgusting. (I'm afraid I'll repeat this word too many times in this blog)

Thursday, 24 May 2007

Zapatetica para Fernando

I guess that this is what happened with lots of Spanish parents; the issue is how to explain it to the LOGSE-generation children. I hadn't been born at the time of the 1982 elections, and I have got memories just from 1992. However, I was definitely awake from the 2000, and I must say that what I saw at my Uni was disgusting.

El pasado martes, Fernando Savater, en el diario El País, se lamentaba de su triste y "zapatética" situación. Resulta que el intelectual más reverenciado por los españoles progres no tiene a quien votar. Se declara socialista, pero le gustaría un partido socialista que en el asunto del terrorismo se apuntara a la política de firmeza del Partido Popular. Por otra parte, votar al PP le resulta imposible, según dice, porque "la derecha está empeñada en el terreno educativo en preferir feligreses obedientes a ciudadanos conscientes".

Con todos mis respetos a la sabiduría y a la inteligencia del señor Savater, debo decir que, o no dice realmente lo que piensa, o no sabe nada de lo que ha pasado con la educación española. Así que me voy a permitir, yo también, una pequeña confesión personal para explicar cómo fue mi camino de desencanto de la izquierda española.

En 1982 voté a Felipe González convencida de que de mano de la izquierda iba a llegar a España la libertad, la democracia y la modernidad. Muchas son las razones que a mí, como a otros, me movieron a dejar de votar a los socialistas, pero si tengo que señalar una de ellas, como profesional de la enseñanza, debo decir que fue su política en el campo de la educación. La Ley Orgánica General del Sistema Educativo, conocida como la LOGSE, fue la ley más sectaria e ideológica que jamás haya conocido España. En nombre de no sé qué extraña interpretación de la igualdad y de la justicia social se decidió que todos los individuos debían saber lo mismo, condenando a la ignorancia a una generación entera.

Pero es más, en el año 2004 los socialistas de Zapatero tuvieron la oportunidad de reconocer lo que ya todo el mundo sabía, que ese modelo igualitario impuesto en España era un fracaso. Pero su sectarismo fue tal que retiraron la Ley de Calidad del Partido Popular para implantar otra suya, la LOE. Una Ley que, por un lado, obligará a los profesores a aprobar a los alumnos "como sea" con tal de evitar las impresentables cifras del llamado fracaso escolar que su LOGSE está dejando en España; y que, por otro, impondrá una asignatura cuyo objetivo fundamental no es formar ciudadanos críticos, sino "zapateritos" preocupados por el cambio climático y la alianza de civilizaciones, es decir, feligreses obedientes y receptivos a una doctrina partidista.

¿Acaso no se da cuenta Savater de la responsabilidad que tiene la izquierda en la educación nacional socialista que desde hace 25 años están recibiendo los niños y jóvenes vascos? ¿No sabe Savater que Esperanza Aguirre, cuando fue ministra de Educación, sufrió la persecución más dura y absurda que haya visto yo sufrir a un político por parte de los nacionalistas y pedagogos, sólo por tratar de que la cordura volviera a la educación española? ¿No quiere enterarse Savater de que la izquierda de este país considera fascista a quien dice que un niño debe aprender a leer, escribir y hacer cuentas o a quien cree que los alumnos deben respetar a sus profesores?

Créame señor Savater, si yo en 1996 decidí, por primera vez, votar al Partido Popular fue, entre otras cosas, porque mi conciencia me exigía castigar a un partido, el PSOE, que prefería borreguitos serviles a ciudadanos instruidos y porque quería colaborar, al menos con mi voto, a que ese partido dejara de una vez de organizar la educación en España. Y créame también si le digo que voté con sensación de angustia, porque abandonar la tribu progresista no es cosa fácil, sobre todo cuando abandonarla exige reconocer que la derecha es la que defiende los valores en los que uno realmente cree, como la verdad, la lealtad, la generosidad, la responsabilidad o la libertad.

Alicia Delibes

I understand that those values at the end of the text (plus love) must help build a better world. Unfortunately, I agree that they are terribly difficult to fully observe. At least that is how it looks like to me.