Spain’s ‘gag law’ brought into force amid protests – The Local

The controversial public security law comes into force on Wednesday amid fears that it will limit freedom of speech and the right to peaceful protest.

Source: Spain’s ‘gag law’ brought into force amid protests – The Local

I had warned that people need to keep an eye on Spain.  Incredibly, I had missed this.  Apparently, a big part of this is to stop the protest being brought on by the austerity movement in Spain.

That’s another word for “Spain is running out of other people’s money.”

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6 Responses to Spain’s ‘gag law’ brought into force amid protests – The Local

  1. Pekka says:

    Are you saying that this horrid, authoritarian, Franco-esque piece of legislation is somehow justified because it’s mainly used to suppress people whose political agenda you disagree with?

    One of the first people to be hit by the law was a Canary Islands resident who called his town’s police department “lazy” on the mayor’s Facebook page.

    • RaulYbarra says:

      Oh heavens no! Quite the opposite, in fact. The law is terrible and I was pointing it out as a warning how governments are going to be increasingly trampling on natural rights as socialist economies collapse. Spain’s abuses are going to be a good place to watch as to how things fall apart.

      • Pekka says:

        Ahh, fair enough fair enough!

        Living there, I do hope it doesn’t quite come to that. But things do look bleak.

        From my personal experience, Spain’s main problems are inflexibility and overregulation, and a culture of tax evasion and corruption (although they are putting a lot of effort in battling the latter). My native Germany (and arguably even the US) are much more “Socialist” than Spain, which does not, for example, have a unified welfare system. In my region, you get unemployment checks for a maximum of 18 months and then nothing. Many people rely on their families to survive; there isn’t a lot of lavish handouts as many outside the country seem to believe.

        It does, however, have a single-payer healthcare system that is terrible (at least in my region) and that everyone who can afford it opts out of. (i.e. purchases additional private insurance.)

        • RaulYbarra says:

          I was fairly confident that there was miscommunication and we were in much closer agreement than not. I do thank you, as well, for the clarification of the situation in Spain. Having a firsthand opinion is always worthwhile.

          Likewise, America is far less socialist than many people outside the country may think. New York City, California, D.C., etc. should be considered exceptions rather than the rule for American thinking. I think recent polling put them at only in the low-20’s percentile. Even the Democrat leadership would be considered only Center-Left by European standards and the rank-and-file Democrat is Center-Right. Most of the policy lurches to the left during the Obama years, as well as the lack of push-back by Republican leadership, have been through deception, corruption and misuse of power. That includes what is commonly referred to as “Obamacare.” People are waking up to a) how bad a program it is, and b) that it’s not really about healthcare after all. They are angry. Very angry. Anger at the American “political class” is the main reason behind the success of Donald Trump. The press keep trying to brush it off as only immigration, but they are very wrong.

          For me the best thing about Trump is that his candidacy is a sign that a political solution is still possible. If it fell to a violent resistance as I feared it would, it would be a very ugly thing. There is little doubt that the federal government would lose, but it would be a very ugly few years. It won’t be anything like the protests or unrest you see in Europe or with the American Left. It would be organized, well coordinated and very heavily armed. I don’t want the country to go in that direction.

          All this does bring up a question I’ve been wanting to ask someone in Europe and I hope you can help. There’s a lot of misunderstanding between American and European politics and a lot of it comes from words/positions not meaning the same here as there. We generally agree on what Far Left is. However, our “liberals” are Europe’s Centrists that range from your Center-Left to Center-Right, as I mentioned earlier. What we call “Conservative” would be better called “classical liberalism” in political theory of limited government with personal liberty and responsibility dominant. It’s not provincialism or clinging to the status quo. This makes up the plurality of Americans (mid-40’s percentile). The American “middle” is somewhere between the two, leans Right, and it’s really a matter of degree of conservatism.

          Where I have the most difficulty explaining is when you get to the Far Right. In Europe, that goes towards National Socialism or Fascism. It is the exact opposite in the U.S. Here, Far Right is minimalist as far as Federal Government is concerned; little more than national defense, foreign affairs and interstate trade. For them, government has no right to involve itself in business affairs or personal decisions or the consequences of those affairs. Our Libertarian Party is a good example. They go far beyond the limited government in which most American’s believe and take individual sovereignty to an extreme.

          That’s a long path to the question… What is – or is there – an equivalent position in Europe? That seems to be the biggest sticking point on explaining American mentality to others. Our “Right” comes off as extreme individualism by European standards, but if I can put it in context of our extreme, it will help in explaining.

          Ps – if you made it all the way through this, thanks for your patience. 🙂

          • Pekka says:

            Hey Raul, haven’t forgotten you and your interesting question. I’m just too busy for a thorough response at the moment. Will get back to you!

  2. Pekka says:

    Apologies for the long time it took me to respond, and thanks for the long explanation!

    I agree there is a lot of misunderstandings about terms across the pond.

    I am not aware of a position, or party, or political movement in Europe that comes close to American Libertarianism – at least none for whom restricting the scope of the state is so much a priority as a matter of principle.

    I grew up in Germany, and I’m most familiar with that country’s political system. We do have some semblance of a classical liberal party, the Free Democratic Party which played an important role as a coalition partner to the ruling parties in the 20th century, but over the past two decades, it has taken beatings so massive it has become close to politically irrelevant. IMO, classical liberalism has always been more of an elite thing in Germany (think people in professions that tend to do well and come with a great amount of independence, often self-employed, doctors, architects, pharmacists…), rather than a deeply rooted ideology spanning across classes like it seems to be in the States. Their downfall may be partly a sign of the times (ideas of small government don’t seem to be in fashion) but it also certainly is because they failed to convince folks about the importance of their mission, and, back when they still had something to say, infamously spearheaded a number of bills that even a charitable view could only interpret as protecting special moneyed interests.

    The new, populist Anti-Europe movements, as well as what is popping up in Germany right now as a reaction to Merkel’s immigration policies, may all be paying lip service to individual liberty, but to me all appear deeply authoritarian in their core.

    The only party that might fit the profile a little bit is the Pirate Party which had some surprising successes over the years, but is still far from being a relevant political force on the national stage.

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