February 26, 2021

Pablo Iglesias and power

Today you can read an extensive interview with Pablo Iglesias in elDiario.es, in which you will find many possible headlines. I think it is interesting to look at something that flies over the entire interview: power. Pablo Iglesias uses the word ‘power’ 15 times during the talk. Political power, media power, business power, the power of the right, the judiciary.

The vice president seems to be clear that one of the strengths for him and Unidos Podemos to have their own profile in the coalition is to emphasize that he is in government, yes, but not with enough weight to have real power over many of the issues of deeper. If a few weeks ago Podemos spoke of nationalizing electricity companies (something ruled out by the ministers with the capacity to do so), today Iglesias asks to get a hand on the laboratories that manufacture the vaccine: “My pulse would not shake in nationalizing pharmaceutical companies if I had the power and that guaranteed The right to health”.

By the way, new this Sunday: the EU accepts a 50% discount on vaccines scheduled until March and ends the war with AstraZeneca. We will see.

Ignacio Escolar and Daniel Basteiro also ask Iglesias about Salvador Illa and his jump to Catalonia in the middle of the third wave of the pandemic. “I have an opinion, but I’m not going to give it,” he replies, although he says that he “has blatant support from certain media powers.” The power.

Interview with Illa. And this weekend too we have interviewed Salvador Illa in elDiario.es. “I feel that I have fulfilled my duty,” he says when asked by Neus Tomás about the debate surrounding his departure from the ministry. The PSC candidate announces his preferences: he will not govern with ERC and, if he needs to, he will do so with the ‘comuns’ in the style of the pact with Podemos at the state level.


VOC B.1.1.7

That, VOC B.1.1.7, is the name of the coronavirus variant that we call in all the media “the British strain.” Spain has begun to measure how it affects the spread of the virus and whether it can ‘break the brakes’ that we are putting on the third wave due to its high transmission capacity. In this report there is a lot of detail about how this mutation behaves. I highlight the opinion of the researcher Roger Paredes: “A more transmissible variant is much worse than a more lethal one, within limits. Because it expands faster, affects more people and ends up saturating hospital systems ”.

ZeroCovid. More and more experts defend that the strategy of ‘living with the virus’ so as not to drown the economy does not work. You have to try to eliminate it altogether, or it always grows back. But we have spoken with experts in Spain and they say that here it may be too late For that.

Tenerife, an example. The exception is called Tenerife, which did not want to save Christmas and, surprise, has reduced infections by 60% since the end of December and has an incidence of the virus 10 times lower than the average in Spain. Our data expert (and from Tenerife) Raúl Sánchez has analyzed the situation and the measures taken.


Royal House, neither transparency nor change

With the scandals affecting Juan Carlos de Borbón, we have read a lot about how Felipe VI “marks distances” and “commits himself to transparency” from the Crown to give him a future and adapt to the times.

However, this weekend we have published two public data that, for whatever reason, are difficult to find in the Spanish written press:

  • Transparency? The Royal House has more than 100 workers, but on its budget there are only 92,000 euros in payroll. The accounts do not come out. Who pays then? The items sneak into the budget of various government ministries.
  • Change? Eight of the 11 high positions that surround Felipe VI in the Royal House are inherited from his father. Among that court of influential people there is only one woman.


Do not pass

  • Coup in Myanmar: the army has just taken control of the country. The military has detained the de facto leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, a figure criticized internationally despite her Nobel Peace Prize.
  • Arab Spring. It is 10 years since that first great rally in Cairo’s Tahrir Square that inspired young people from all over the world. Olga Rodríguez, an expert in the area, reviews what has happened with one of the activists who participated.
  • We interviewed Kiko Amat about her new novel. I don’t know how this will be, but I read the previous one, Before the hurricane, which is a tough, fun and nostalgic wonder, highly recommended especially for those born in the 70s and 80s.


Things i didn’t know

  • I did not know that the idolized journalist Ryszard Kapuściński he never did any interviews: “It’s a despicable format.” It is one of the jewels of this conversation in 2002 with Martín Caparrós, which the Argentine writer now recovers on his blog.
  • I did not know that the German word for giving births, Kreisaal, comes from the old German verb Kreißen, which means to shout. And they put saal behind. In other words, in German you say ‘shouting room’. German precision. I have read it to the illustrator María Castelló.


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