Counting the corrupt

A numerate, corrupt mayor, some innumerate anti-corruption campaigners, and de Tocqueville.

100% of Spanish graduates interviewed (sample size: 1) said this <a href=''>abacus</a> was in fact architect's plans for a bowling alley.

100% of Spanish graduates interviewed (sample size: 1) said this abacus was in fact architect's plans for a bowling alley.

A curious combat:

  1. Thousands of graduates have been breaking electoral law to protest political lawlessness and trumpeting decisions taken by small groups of militants without secret ballot as the best way to correct Spain’s defective democracy. None, however, seems to have been able to come up with a decent list of the alleged crooks, imputados, standing for election today. Why? Never seen a spreadsheet? Embarrassed to admit that power has corrupted all parties–their parties–and not just the big two they are demonstrating against?
  2. Meanwhile, in a hamlet in Castilla-León several weeks ago the mayor told a quasi-hippy acquaintance that it would be crystal-clear for whom he had postal-voted, and that not ticking the PP box might well have negative consequences for his investment.

I’ve got my money on the mayor, who will I think at least save himself. Meanwhile, and with Spanish bonds under renewed pressure, Alexis de Tocqueville in Democracy In America sums up the rest of Spain’s plight this weekend quite nicely:

The American republics of the present day are like companies of adventurers formed to explore in common the waste lands of the New World, and busied in a flourishing trade. The passions which agitate the Americans most deeply are not their political but their commercial passions; or, to speak more correctly, they introduce the habits they contract in business into their political life. They love order, without which affairs do not prosper; and they set an especial value upon a regular conduct, which is the foundation of a solid business; they prefer the good sense which amasses large fortunes to that enterprising spirit which frequently dissipates them; general ideas alarm their minds, which are accustomed to positive calculations, and they hold practice in more honor than theory.

Similar posts


  1. Have you ever heard the old Spanish saying? “Pueblo pequeño, infierno grande”.

  2. And this is especially true in Castile and León –incidentally, the form Castilla-León is anathema here–. I can’t give any details here, because everything you write in the Net is kept there forever, but my wife and I have suffered that kind of bullying.

  3. Could be slightly worse – during the last local elections I was living in a village in Huesca where shots were fired as the results were announced.

  4. If the utopians want to make decisions like that well known Jerusalem, Ford Dagenham in the 1970s, then that’s surely up to them, like any political organisation. They just shouldn’t suggest it’s got anything to do with real democracy.

  5. You’re such a pityless bottom, Trebots. The young folks have learned nothing better and a little benefit o/ doubt is common courtesy.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *