Elciego and around, cradle of Rioja wine

It’s the heart of the summer, and from the height south-bordering the Álava plain there lies at my feet, majestic and fertile, hot and glaring, the Ebro valley; namely the Basque side of Rioja, which is somehow a territorial inconsistence, since all southern Álava is, like Treviño, actually more Castilian than Basque; but we’re deep into an autonomic nonsense here in Spain, after Franco died.

Valle del Ebro al pie de la llanada Alavesa
The Ebro valey below the Álava plain

The road from Vitoria to the height descends now towards the valley in a series of fun bends which are a good challenge for a bike rider. Pity it gets so hot as I go down into the Iberic cauldron, the valley bed where the vinyards are, that I need to take my jacket off. Continue reading “Elciego and around, cradle of Rioja wine”

The Decalogue of illegal immigration

Affricans assulting Spanish border's fence
Affricans assulting Spanish border’s fence

1. For admitting inmigrants in Spain, first we must make sure we want them. We don’t need more unemployed people. Charity, well understood, begins at home. Let kindness to the next not turn into lack of kindness to ourselves.
2. Once we’re sure we can provide for them, welcome those who come in legally. We should flexibilize these legal channels, but never reward those who want to skip them.
3. Attack a cop is considered a crime in Spain. Any alien who crosses the border assaulting our policemen becomes a criminal right away. We don’t need more criminals in Spain.
4. It’s governmental demagogy to blame human trade syndicates for the assaults to our borders. Those who destroy the fences and attack our officers are not the gangsters, but the allegedly exhausted, hungry, weakened and dying inmigrants.
5. It’s too easy to act generous with public money. Those in our society who feel more inclined to pity and charity and want to share our wealth with the aliens should take them in into their own homes, and provide for them at their own expense until the aliens could live on their own; health care and education inclusive; but such a burden should not be imposed onto the rest of tax payers. Altruism should never be a duty.
6. The problem of Spanish borders is a Spanish problem, not the EU’s. We don’t need other countries’ permission to protect our frontiers. Most illegals entering Spain remain in Spain, they don’t spread throughout Europe. Climate is better here and, besides, where else would they be more protected and spoiled?
7. If we really wanted to help those Africans, we’d start by lessening the pressure on their natural resources. Otherwise means hypocrisy. Less consumption and waste in Western countries: this is the only consistent way of helping the Third World. But then there is no economical growth! Both things cannot coexist. Let’s make up our minds and behave accordingly.
8. Philanthropy and solidarity with the agressive inmigrants assaulting our borders means severe and contradictory lack of philanthropy and solidarity with those much more numerous who, just because of they’re weaker and more needy, could never set to Spain.
9. If we have to accept inmigrants and we truly mean to be humanitarian, we should fly ourselves to their countries, pick the poorer ones, then bring them home and host them, instead of waiting here for the brutest to arrive and reward their audacity and their aggressivity.
10. Finally, let’s take off our hypocritical mask. Let’s acknowledge the truth: few among us care about those blacks who died by Ceuta, those who died when sailing dinghies, those who perish along the desert… Few among us really want those aliens here. Let’s stop acting compassionate and moved by their wretchedness. They wanted to get in illegaly; they perished; too bad.

Spain and the Spanish language

[:es]Creo que la tibieza es uno de los mayores problemas de la derecha española, y que nuestras diversas fuerzas políticas estarían más equilibradas, y se enfrentarían en mejor igualdad de condiciones, si el españolismo y la derecha tomaran nota de algunas virtudes importantes que ahora son monopolio de la izquierda y del separatismo, como el sentido de legitimidad moral e histórica y la falta de conformismo.
Tengo la impresión de que la derecha está demasiado aburguesada, de que es demasiado acomodaticia, y además siente aversión por la calle, no sé si porque sienten que la protesta callejera es poco digna o -y esto sería peor aún- porque, en el fondo, se avergüenzan de su propia ideología. Como quiera que sea, me parece que las derechas en España adolecen de cierta debilidad de carácter y fragilidad ideológica que les hace claudicar con excesiva facilidad ante las astutas consignas del victimismo izquierdoso e independentista. Esos defectos, junto al miedo -al parecer insuperable- a ser tachados de intolerantes, me sugieren un preocupante complejo autoritario; pero en ese caso no deberían extrañarse ni dolerse cuando los llaman nazis o fachas, pues a lo mejor ellos mismos se sienten desligitimados en su posicionamiento político. Serio problema, sobre todo teniendo en cuenta que, en España, si no te llaman facha o intolerante una vez por semana, algo estás haciendo mal.

Bandera antinómica
Bandera antinómica

Pero si no es un complejo, no me explico que la derecha haya renunciado con tanta presteza a la palabra España y sus derivados. Cuando nuestra democracia aún era muy joven, ya las derechas negaron -como Pedro negó a Jesús- eso de España para abrazar y consagrar lo de “este país”; y no mucho después, al impulso de las fuerzas antiespañolistas nacido del rencor y amparado en la nefasta redacción del art. 3 de nuestra Constitución, a su vez respaldado por una politizada y patética Real Academia de la Lengua, la derecha traicionó al idioma español para entronizar a la lengua castellana, esa anacrónica imprecisión semántica cuya única razón de seguir existiendo es que satisface el revanchismo de la media España descendiente de quienes fueron derrotados en la guerra civil.
Y es así como, bajo la mayoría absoluta del PP, resulta que la propia “Ley Wert” -supuesta reconquista de lo ibérico- en lugar de recuperar la lengua española de toda la vida, confirma la inocua lengua castellana, negadora de todo concepto de patria. Penosos complejos de la derecha. Porque de nuestras izquierdas, sucesoras de los republicanos, es comprensible que, con sus imbatibles tácticas propagandísticas y su virtuoso dominio de la manipulación, se alineen del lado de los independentismos y abominen de términos que, convenientemente sesgados, sean susceptibles de identificarse con el franquismo, como España o lengua española. Pero si nuestras derechas claudican ante esas maniobras, ¿qué fuerza tienen luego para querer hacer patria y defender la unidad de una España cuyo nombre llevan cuarenta años sin atreverse a pronunciar?
NOTA SEMÁNTICA: El gallego, aunque fuese una lengua española (que no lo es, pues también se habla en zonas de Portugal), no es la lengua española. Lo mismo puede decirse del vascuence y el catalán, e incluso del castellano (suponiendo que alguien sepa exactamente lo que el castellano sea, dónde empieza y dónde acaba). De manera que sólo el español es la lengua española por antonomasia. Este debate, tan trillado, se reduce en el fondo a una simple cuestión de distinguir entre adjetivos y sustantivos, artículos determinados e indeterminados, y a la teoría algebraica de conjuntos. Todo lo demás es querer marear la perdiz, palabrería e instrumental político.[:en]Spanish right wing is lukewarm, which is one of its bigger problems; and I believe that our several political forces would be rather more balanced and coexist in more equal conditions would the not-secessionist right learn a couple important virtues now monopolized by the lefties and separatists; that is: the sense of moral and historical legitimacy, and the nonconformity (in the sense of moving away from gentry).
The rights in Spain are too burgeaois, too passive, besides having a strong distaste for the street, maybe because they believe that to protest or demostrate don’t suit the dignity that–they feel–corresponds to their category; or maybe because–and this is even worse–in the bottom of themselves they feel ashamed of their own ideology.
Certainly, Spanish right parties suffer from some weakness of temperament and even some ideological fragility, which makes them yield way too easily to the cunning slogans put forward by the left wing and the secessionists’ self-victimization. Such chronic ailments, along with their apparently unsurmountable fear of being called close-minded, denote a worrisome authoritarianism complex. But if they’re afraid of this, I wonder: how can they sadden to be branded as nazis or fascists? And I reply: doesn’t it mean that they feel discredited themselves in their political views? This is a severe and distressing problem, mostly taking into account that, in Spain, if you have never been called fascist or intolerant, then you’ve never had an idea of your own.
Bandera antinómica
Antinomy flag

And if it’s not a complex, then I can’t understand why the Spanish righties gave up so readily and so soon to the word Spain and its derivatives. Our democracy was quite young when the right wing “disowned” (as Saint Peter did with Jesus) that word Spain and, instead, adopted and enshrined the locution this country. Not much later, following the anti-Spanish half of Spain driven by resentment, backed by the utterly regrettable wording of our Constitution article nr. three and supported by an unauthorized and pathetic Royal Academy of Language, the rights betrayed the Spanish language and enthroned the Castilian, an anachronism and vagueness whose only reasong for being is that it satisfies the revanchism of that half of Spain descendents of those who were defeated in our civil war.
And this is why today, despite ruling a right wing party with absolute majority, yet the new Law for Education, presumedly recapturing patriotic ideas of unity, in spite of recovering the good old Spanish language, sanctions the innocuous Castilian language, negating any patriotic notion. Pityful right complexes! It’s quite understandable that our lefties, successors of the republicans and masters of manipulation and propaganda, line up along with secessionists (Basque country, Catalonia) and abjure of words liable to be identified, if properly biased, with Franco’s dictatorship. But if our rights give in to such ploys, which power have they to “build nation” and defend the unity of a Spain whose name don’t utter for forty years?
SEMANTIC NOTE: Galician, Catalonian and Basque are not solely Spanish languages, because they’re also spoken in neighbouring countries, like France or Portugal. But even if they were, they’re not the Spanish language. Same goes for Castilian, supposing someone knows exactly what that be. Only Spanish is the language of Spain. This debate, so often brought up, turns out to be a simple question of being able to tell between adjectives and nouns, definite and undefinite articles, and to know the algebra of sets. Anything else is tomfoolery, hot air and politics.[:]