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KDave

Catalonia and the effect on banks

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I have been watching with interest the independence referendum and the response by the status quo in Spain. It is clear to me that Catalonia is lost, yet the national government insists on pretending otherwise.

Is there a bigger reason for this? The loss of 20% of the Spanish economy would have a disastrous effect on the ability of Spain to repay it's debts, but would not the liabilities likely be shared akin to the plan for Scottish independence?

Are these events potentially a catalyst for problems within the European banking system and thus the reason why the national government is so opposed? Or is what we are seeing purely political. What we are seeing reminds me very much of Greece. Your thoughts if you please :)

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If Catalonia is lost then the Basque country is gone - then what next? The Basque people have been pushing for independence for as long as i can remember. 

The issue is not confined to Spain, which with underlying pressures on the cohesiveness of the EU, there will be forces outside Spain acting to keep the country whole. The last thing they want is contagion. The political map a few 100 years ago was not much like the modern version. There were many principalities, city states, duchies, electorates and so on. The idea we are one nation is artificial and relatively new, it is not confined to the  disunited Kingdom.

http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/politics/nine-regions-europe-demands-independence-13707460

 

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Apparently, the poll only had a turnout of 42%, yet they say 90%.backed independence.  One thing is for sure, the EU doesn't want it or before you know it, mini-States would be popping up all over the place. That I'm afraid that would be the end of the EU experiment. It seems the human race doesn't have the ability to unite and live in peace.

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I am surprised about the lack of information provided by the international media about the event... this was not an expression of democracy but is an attempted revolution by a minority!

This referendum falls short of any standards even of banana republics:

1) Voters printed out their ballot paper(s!) at home. 

2) Even children put ballot papers into the urns with no control how many votes someone was casting - the head of the gang (Puigdemont) cast his vote elsewhere so there was no check against an electoral register.

3) The election was not run by an independent committee but by the separatist gang. There is plenty of evidence that unwanted pro Spain votes were disregarded. 

 

The general strike reminds of Robespierre where people who wanted to open their business where threatened or their shops damaged. 

 

This is no expression of voters will, this is a hostile takeover and communist revolution attempt. 

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38 minutes ago, Xander said:

Apparently, the poll only had a turnout of 42%, yet they say 90%.backed independence.  One thing is for sure, the EU doesn't want it or before you know it, mini-States would be popping up all over the place. That I'm afraid that would be the end of the EU experiment. It seems the human race doesn't have the ability to unite and live in peace.

A turnout of 42% is absolutely massive. Remember the police were seizing ballot boxes, seizing voting slips, smashing polling stations up, arresting officials, dragging women out of stations by their hair, using rubber bullets against the people. Over 10 million ballot papers were seized (aka stolen). I remember hearing over a million votes were seized by the national police. 

Of those whose votes were counted, over 90% voted for independence. Madrid knew there would be an overwhelming vote for independence and so they tried to completely derail the referendum. Many will have been scared away, too frightened to vote. That as many turned out at risk to their well being is astounding. This has ignited the Basque country where armed separatists have been active since the 1950's. There are serious economic problems in Spain with the latest unemployment rate published at over 17% and proclaimed as progress - it has been over 20%. Youth unemployment is almost 40%. 

Edited by sixgun

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2 minutes ago, sixgun said:

A turnout of 42% is absolutely massive. Remember the police were seizing ballot boxes, seizing voting slips, smashing polling stations up, arresting officials, dragging women out of stations by their hair, using rubber bullets against the people. Over 10 million ballot papers were seized (aka stolen). I remember hearing over a million votes were seized by the national police. 

Of those whose votes were counted, over 90% voted for independence. Madrid knew there would be an overwhelming vote for independence and so they tried to completely derail the referendum. Many will have been scared away, too frightened to vote. That as many turned out at risk to their well being is astounding. There has ignited the Basque country where armed separatists have been active since the 1950's. There are serious economic problems in Spain with the latest unemployment rate published at over 17% and proclaimed as progress - it has been over 20%. Youth unemployment is almost 40%. 

I agree that's the reason Brussels is panicking. They reckon this will be even worse than "Brexit" for the EU integration experiment.

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Good points augur, but there is a great deal of counter evidence to the picture painted there. 

If the national government will not even entertain the idea of an independent vote then constructive and peaceful dialogue is over before it has even started. I believe the reaction to generate their own 'vote', which I agree, was substandard to say the least, was a positive thing, certainly better than what other national groups have done in the past to fight for their independence (ranging from terrorism to military involvement, ect). There was a number of so called decoy ballot boxes with blank votes used to distract the police which would have been counted (hence the large number of votes that were neither for or against) and of course, the police destroyed and confiscated many of the votes, so we will never know what the true representation was.

There is a great deal of video evidence of police brutality towards protesters. The numbers of injured in the last mass protest was into the hundreds and included people of retirement age. This was certainly not what could be described as a hostile takeover attempt, given the numbers of civilian injured (several hunderd) vs police injuries (10) and the fact the focus of the protest was democratic vote, as substandard as it was in terms of quality. 

Regardless, I think these events have added what was needed to allow independence to the region, which has been building for years now. Either that or things will deteriorate akin to nationalist movements we have seen throughout history. Neither will be good for Spain, and non of this is good for the EU. 

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The turnout was not 42%! That's the number of votes the separatist gang produced. Apart from dividing the Catalan society they are no holding the No sayers hostage. 

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Madrid would not have used brute force against the referendum unless they were sure the result was other than they wanted. They could not have the votes counted.

The logical thing to do would be to allow the vote to go ahead and observe the vote. What outcomes might there be.

  1. No-one turns up b/c no-one is interested.
  2. A large turn out and it is a big vote against independence.
  3. A large turn out and a big vote for independence

Madrid knew option 3 was going to happen and so they did what they did. There was a massive ground swell of public opinion. The people acting together is what the ruling elite feaar the most and then all they have is smear stories and brute force. Perhaps they will blame it on the Russians at some point but there again who would do something like that when they end up on the wrong side of democracy.

 

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11 minutes ago, KDave said:

Good points augur, but there is a great deal of counter evidence to the picture painted there. 

If the national government will not even entertain the idea of an independent vote then constructive and peaceful dialogue is over before it has even started.

You would need a change of constitution to run such a referendum. Same as if the City of London decided to declare themselves independent. 

Catalonia has not been independent for hundred of years. Most "export" is done with Spain so if they went independent most businesses would have to relocate etc. etc. 

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10 minutes ago, sixgun said:

Madrid would not have used brute force against the referendum unless they were sure the result was other than they wanted. They could not have the votes counted.

The logical thing to do would be to allow the vote to go ahead and observe the vote. What outcomes might there be.

  1. No-one turns up b/c no-one is interested.
  2. A large turn out and it is a big vote against independence.
  3. A large turn out and a big vote for independence

Madrid knew option 3 was going to happen and so they did what they did. There was a massive ground swell of public opinion. The people acting together is what the ruling elite feaar the most and then all they have is smear stories and brute force. Perhaps they will blame it on the Russians at some point but there again who would do something like that when they end up on the wrong side of democracy.

 

They already did an indisturbed referendum two years ago and lost. 

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Scotland hasn’t been independent for hundreds of years either but they’ll be gone before you know it. 

If the tax money isn’t being spent in Catalan and they feel they aren’t being listened too, of course they’ll want to go independent.

Two areas of Italy are next in the independence voting spree and it won’t end there.

The EU is over, it’s on life support, it’s already gone! 

 

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12 minutes ago, augur said:

You would need a change of constitution to run such a referendum. Same as if the City of London decided to declare themselves independent. 

Catalonia has not been independent for hundred of years. Most "export" is done with Spain so if they went independent most businesses would have to relocate etc. etc. 

The Statute of Autonomy of Catalonia which got overwhelming approval in a referendum was struck down and declared in valid by the Constitutional Court in 2010. This stripped out many benefits for Catalonia and her autonomy. There has been trouble ever since. The people voted and had the result denied them. 

3 minutes ago, augur said:

They already did an indisturbed referendum two years ago and lost. 

In November 2014 over 80% voted in support of Catalonian independence. Even the BBC agrees with that. 

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-29982960

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1 minute ago, augur said:

The turnout was somewhere 40% with most anti-separatists boycotting the vote. 

It is anti democratic if a minority forces their decided opinion on the majority 

The minority is always forcing their opinion on the majority. The majority are still watching Coronation Street or at the pub. 

Madrid has been dragging its heels for years - the Catalan government officially started the process towards independence 2 years ago.  Pro-independence representatives hold the majority in the Catalan parliament. The vote in 2014 was non binding - they wanted a binding referendum, so 2014 was something of a warm up for the real thing, hence a lower turnout but of course Madrid will not agree to binding vote b/c they know what the result will be, so Catalonia takes matters into its own hands. 

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It is true that in democracy especially in the UK, the party in power represents only a small portion of the electorate. I believe the conservatives are currently in power with only 40% of the vote or thereabouts, and were not far off a so called 'majority'. 

I think that the comparisons between Scotland and Catalonia are valid, the difference appears to me in the way that both cases are being dealt with by the national government, but are otherwise the same in principle. It is precisely because the vote will go against the national government in Spain that the vote will not legally happen, but there will likely be severe consequences further down the line from this course.

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Regardless of the turnout (which did appear massive, but electoral standards were clearly very lax), the way Spain handled the crisis has effectively put in motion an unstoppable march towards independence for Catalonia now.  A democratic government cannot fear a vote, illegal or legal... using the paramilitary police to baton charge old grannies was a stupid, dangerous move.

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People like to claim the non voters  to count towards the status quo as it suits their ends. In my opinion it should be a simply majority of those who can be arsed to get out and put pen to paper, and dodge the police batons in the case of Catalunia. 

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1 minute ago, Clens92 said:

using the paramilitary police to baton charge old grannies was a stupid, dangerous move.

Crisis management was definitely a disaster. Rajoy made the mistake to try to reason with unreasonable people.

And the national police (which is not a paramilitary force) was stupid or unprofessional enough to allow to get provoked. Something the separatist were very clever to use for their cause. 

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32 minutes ago, augur said:

Crisis management was definitely a disaster. Rajoy made the mistake to try to reason with unreasonable people.

And the national police (which is not a paramilitary force) was stupid or unprofessional enough to allow to get provoked. Something the separatist were very clever to use for their cause. 

I'm under the impression that Guardia Civil were deployed?

I respect your point of view on this, but do disagree overall.  The unreasonable factor in this mess is the Spanish constitution which makes any independence referendum illegal, forever.  The Spanish constitution is inherently undemocratic and illegal, unfortunately.

And as usual, a small argument will escalate into an EU vs. anti-EU argument and become twice as bad

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On 05/10/2017 at 22:16, Clens92 said:

I respect your point of view on this, but do disagree overall.  The unreasonable factor in this mess is the Spanish constitution which makes any independence referendum illegal, forever.  The Spanish constitution is inherently undemocratic and illegal, unfortunately.

No, no Guardia Civil, just Policía Nacional in riot gear. 

Edit: @Clens92 is correct: Guardia Civil was deployed, I did see them on some BBC footage. But as regular police force in riot gear, not with submachine guns. I am still surprised since there was no official mention of this and it would have heated the situation unnecessarily. Maybe some old footage but let's assume the BBC wouldn't do that.

I times of international corporations, international crime and "international terrorism" I don't see much point in separatist movements. A federal structure and a democratic legitimation would give the smaller entities much more of a voice in Europe that little city states. 

Problem is, there is no direct democracy in Europe nor an appropriate constitution. I think that is much more urgent than being divided. 

Divide et impera has been applied by the ruling class for millennia yet the masses still get sucked in these vortices of nationalism or religious fanaticism instead of dealing with the real issues. 

Edited by augur

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The problems with nationalism have arisen because of larger structures consistently taking action that is not in the interest of all of its constituents and failing to accommodate their interests. The UK as part of Europe was an ongoing example, now finished. Catalonia as part of Spain is another, ongoing. 

If people want their own interests represented and the larger structures can not accommodate, then a split, with all the problems that come with it, is inevitable. The alternative, if the state is not willing to accommodate the interests of its people or allow the split, is repression, as we have seen in Spain. When police are wounding civilians by the hundreds during peaceful protests, the state has given up some of its legitimacy as protector against crime and terrorism. When the state will not allow democratic vote on certain matters, it has given up some of its legitimacy as a democratic state. This is ultimately the problem we now have in Spain - Catalonia is as good as gone because of the actions of the state. 

Effectively combating issues such as international crime, terrorism and business does not require a repressive unified government. 

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I seem to stand pretty alone with my opinion. Very well.

Back to the headline of this topic: Banco Sabadell is moving its headquarters from Sabadell (Catalonia) to Alicante. La Caixa is considering a similar step. 

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