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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Not sure if anyone is keeping up with the political news in Spain but honestly what is happening? Pablo Inglesias and a POSE minister have received bullets in the post with threatening letters. VOX refuses to condemn the actions and on a TV debate Inglesias has just stormed off after VOX have claimed that it is set up by the left to discredit the right. Honestly is this how a modern democracy should be behaving?
 

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Yes I follow it closely, but tend to avoid talking about it on this forum. The infighting is deeply depressing but nothing new I'm afraid. Frankly I'm amazed the Sánchez government, which depends on the support of so many minority parties, manages to get any legislation through at all,. But they are doing pretty well considering (IMO).
 

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Yes I follow it closely, but tend to avoid talking about it on this forum. The infighting is deeply depressing but nothing new I'm afraid. Frankly I'm amazed the Sánchez government, which depends on the support of so many minority parties, manages to get any legislation through at all,. But they are doing pretty well considering (IMO).
Personally I don't do politics anymore but I agree. I'm.ofyen amazed that the country still managed to function etc with such shall political margins
 

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Alcalaina - is there a good forum you can recommend that does discuss Spanish politics without devolving into a left or right bias? I'd love to find one so I can keep up with that a little easier. We're watching what's happening as we plan to move (still 3 or so years out).

Thanks,

--Henry
 

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Its impossible to discuss politics without having a bias, everyone has and is entitled to an opinion.

Vox are entitled to not condemn actions, and Podemos are entited to withdraw from debates. Howe each of those acts affects their campaigns is a different issue, but I think there will be quite a few smug and content Vox supporters today.

At least in Spain the left / right divide is real and tangible. There was a moment in British politics that Labour and Tory were virtually indistinguishable.
 

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Alcalaina - is there a good forum you can recommend that does discuss Spanish politics without devolving into a left or right bias? I'd love to find one so I can keep up with that a little easier. We're watching what's happening as we plan to move (still 3 or so years out).

Thanks,

--Henry
Not really, I tend to have such discussions "live" or with friends on Facebook. Forums tend to attract extremists because of their anonymity. A good way to follow what's going on is via online newspapers - El País (middle of the road) has articles in English, El Diario is my preference as it is more critical - if you don't read Spanish you can run it through a translator.
 

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I too have my list of daily news sites (El Pais, Catalan News, etc). I'd love to find a forum that hosted political specific discussions without allowing the devolving into chaos. I know, I ask for a lot :) Y no tengo problemas con el idioma espanol. ;-)
 

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*castellano ;)

I'd love to find a forum that hosted political specific discussions without allowing the devolving into chaos.
Especially given the modern climate of "everyone that disagrees with me is evil and must be destroyed no matter how much I have to mangle the truth", I don't know if a forum on the internet that is open to the public could ever meet that standard. Every internet discussion that is open to the public, especially anonymously, will eventually prove Godwin's Law.

If you just want hearty debate, surely Spain has roundtable discussion on news programs? At least those would be named professionals.
 

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Personally, I feel it is extraordinary that some people can choose to live in a country where they feel they have no need to inform themselves about the political life of said country. I know people will disagree vehemently about this in the same way they do about language but for me it denotes a lazy lethargic approach to life. I believe you have a social responsibility to engage in democracy. Political instability, corruption, persecution arise when citizens fail to scrutinise those in power. Democracy for Spain was hard won and many suffered to bring it about. Now it is taken for granted and it's easy to see how it is starting to slip away as political debate descends into Friday's fiasco which for all intents and purposes became a TV moment more similar to a prensa rosa program than a serious debate
 

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Personally, I feel it is extraordinary that some people can choose to live in a country where they feel they have no need to inform themselves about the political life of said country. I know people will disagree vehemently about this in the same way they do about language but for me it denotes a lazy lethargic approach to life. I believe you have a social responsibility to engage in democracy. Political instability, corruption, persecution arise when citizens fail to scrutinise those in power. Democracy for Spain was hard won and many suffered to bring it about. Now it is taken for granted and it's easy to see how it is starting to slip away as political debate descends into Friday's fiasco which for all intents and purposes became a TV moment more similar to a prensa rosa program than a serious debate
But these people would be the same wherever they live. If they bother to vote at all, they make their decisions on the basis of personalities (or rather, how those personalities are presented by the media), not the political ideology of the parties.

Sadly I think this trend of personality politics has emerged in Spain over the last few years. The transition to democracy happened over forty years ago and people have short memories - either that or they look on the last two decades of the Franco regime as "the good old days" of stability and prosperity.

I know people whose fundamental values are socialist to the core but they believe Pablo Iglesias is the devil incarnate because of the Vox propaganda on social media. Not dissimilar to what happened with Jeremy Corbyn in the UK.

For those who didn't see the TV interview you mentioned earlier, the Vox candidate cast doubt on the fact that Podemos candidates had received bullets through the post and refused to condemn the death threats. The Podemos leader left the debate, saying that "the extreme right should not be whitewashed like this" (i.e. the interview should have been handled better by the moderator). Two other candidates walked out shortly afterwards and the debate was terminated.

I vaguely recalled similar situations in the UK with mainstream politicians refusing to share a platform with UKIP candidates, and leftist politicians get death threats on Twitter all the time, especially if they are female. So perhaps the state of democracy in the two countries isn't that different.

It's possible that Vox's tactics will persuade more people to come out and vote against them on 4 May - we can only hope.
 

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I am no longer interested in politics on forums simply because it always turns into a fascist right v leftwing looney debate, posters who believe they hold some moral high ground and attempt to put others down as soon as they post. Don't confuse lack of interest on forums as lack of interest in life. I keep abreast of politics here, UK and in Ireland three countries if which I have interests in, what I don't need or want to do is engage on forums or on social media as it always without doubt turns into a them v us debate.

So no, I don't "do" politics anymore, except in private
 

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I am no longer interested in politics on forums simply because it always turns into a fascist right v leftwing looney debate, posters who believe they hold some moral high ground and attempt to put others down as soon as they post. Don't confuse lack of interest on forums as lack of interest in life. I keep abreast of politics here, UK and in Ireland three countries if which I have interests in, what I don't need or want to do is engage on forums or on social media as it always without doubt turns into a them v us debate.

So no, I don't "do" politics anymore, except in private
I know what you mean - let’s see how long we can keep this thread going before it degenerates!
 

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You all are such a great source of inspiration, I appreciate all of you. I agree that it's extremely difficult to find anywhere to discuss the realities and facts without people becoming entrenched in their own beliefs/desires. I'm a data/fact guy and like looking at reality for just that - what things are in the moment, without the persuasive "you need to think this" crap.

FWIW, I'm a mod on a really large science forum and we have a policy of no politics at all - period. It is spelled out in our terms of service. It has kept the forums alive and heathy since the early 2000s with well over 150k users. We quash any and all attempts from posters to go political, no questions asked. It's the only way we've found to ensure sanity :)

That said I wish someone would stand up a forum for politics with the exact same type of terms of service, but allowing politics only in a courteous, data-backed way. If someone did that the site would be wildly popular. But then again, you'd need a platoon of mods just to keep things in line!

Thanks again for the discourse here, I am lucky to have found this forum and you all!

--Henry
 

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it always turns into a fascist right v leftwing looney debate
Yeah, that's kind of where I am. I consider myself a leftie, and have become deeply disgusted with the right, but have also become disenchanted with the left, too. Political leanings used to be a bell curve - it is becoming a U-shape with just the extremes. There is no room for moderates. Any discussion just devolves into the two extremes screaming at each other, everyone to the right of the left is a fascist, and everyone to the left of the right is a communist that hates America (at least here). There is no oxygen left for the moderates, for a healthy, productive debate between left-of-center and right-of-center.

I don't think it was caused-by, but it certainly has been accelerated to warp speed by social media. I've basically had to abandon Facebook - it was bad enough to get into arguments with right-wing extremists, but when I started getting shouted down by my liberal friends for not being extreme enough, for wanting to do things like "fact checking" and "trying to understand what the other side was saying". I lost a few friends. Now I only really check FB for my groups. The few times I get pulled back into a debate, I regret it - I'm usually arguing with someone that doesn't care what the facts are. What is the point of that?

I'm deeply concerned about the future. We can solve just about any problem - if we work together and respect one another. But people seem more interested in chauvinism, insults, pseudo-science, misinformation, etc. This is not slowing down but is accelerating. I might have hope if people saw it as a problem, but too many people cheer it on. The may complain about the other side's epistemological trickery, but embrace it on their side. This terrifies me.

It's probably worse here in the States. To compound things, we Americans are often woefully underinformed - despite assuming that we are the world's expert on everything. Oh, the stories I could tell... By contrast, when in Europe, I found people better informed and more willing to listen. I'm sure there are loonies there too, but nothing can match what it is like here now. We should be getting to Spain by next summer (if covid permits) - I know things won't be perfect, but at least I won't be surrounded by Trump fanatics and guns.
 

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Some pointers
Politics in Spain and maybe in other countries is a marketing campaign, well really a smear campaign and in the campaign anything can be used, not to add to the worth of your argument, but to throw shiit at the others. Polititians say less and less about what they are going to do and more and more about what the other party didn't do.

Mainstream politics and local politics are completely mixed up so for example elections are to be held shortly in Madrid and Ayuso talks constantly about Sanchez and Sanchismo (president of the country) but her PSOE opponent is actually Gabilondo because even though I'm sure she'd like to fight a national election she is in fact in local politics.

The idea of truth and lie really doesn't exist. The philosophy of just telling the lie over and over, even if people call you out on it, and a large group of people will believe you, is what reigns. When Esperanza Aguirre was president I remember the streets being full of posters saying that they were investing in health workers and this was receiving a lot of media coverage. At the same time there were doctors, nurses, surgeons etc were on strike for better pay and conditions.

I think this is worldwide, but anyway, this is a snapshot of politics in Spain today
 

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I particulary like the Vox campaign poster which states that an unaccompanied immigrant child in Spain cost more to the government that a pensioner gets when retired. Yet Vox voted against the last propsed rise in pensions... politics relies on people having very short, or selective memories!
 

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Jazzguitar, good post, agree with a lot of it. Just one thing though, I wouldn't advise changing your country because of Politics. Policies and Leaders can change quickly, the public can change too. A case of different country same sh*t. I would find Politics easier to ignore in Spain because I have never got my head around how they work so maybe it would do me good ;)
"Politicians are like sperm, one in a million turn out to be a human being"
 

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One thing is to change country expecting a different political leadership (which clearly in most cases is transient in nature), another thing is moving from one system to another.

Sadly I don't think that Spain is particulalry "better" than many other places either in its systematic or in the leaders chosen by the electorate!

The most politically stable and clear political system I have lived under was a military dictatorship.... but I wouldn't really recommend it.
 
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