The Spanish Candidate

Spain is having a problem with its government.  It doesn’t have one, and hasn’t for more than three-quarters of a year.  Spain’s last two elections didn’t go so well.  In typical European style, they have a whole bunch of different parties representing everything from Communists on one side to Franco loving Fascists on the other, with just about every other political and economic ideology being represented in the middle; and not one party has gained enough votes to be declared the winner.

It you talk to the people of Spain, they really don’t think it’s a problem.

For the past 288 days, Spain has plodded along without an elected national government. For some Spaniards, this is a wonderful thing.  “No government, no thieves,” said Félix Pastor, a language teacher who, like many voters, is fed up with the corruption and scandals that tarnished the two previous governing parties.

Just like we were told in 2013 when the GOP managed to get the Federal Government shut down for a few days, the Spanish Government said it would be a disaster of biblical proportions.

Spain’s leaders warned that having no government would mean chaos and deprivation.

Turns out, the government lied.

Instead, more than anything, the crisis seems to have offered a glimpse of life if politicians simply stepped out of the way. For many here, it has not been all that bad.  “Spain would be just fine if we got rid of most of the politicians and three-fourths of government employees,” Rafael Navarro, 71, said inside his tiny storefront pharmacy in Madrid. Too little government is better than too much, he said.

I am 100% sure if you replaced “Spain” with the “The United States” in the above quote, it would be just as accurate.

There has been no United States-style government shutdown. There are no mounds of uncollected garbage, no unpaid police officers, no shuttered ministries, no public trains or buses halted.

Except in the US, all of those services are state and local.  They would be largely unaffected by a sudden downsizing of the Federal Government.

Nacho Cardero, the editor of El Confidencial, a news website, reader clicks on stories about the crisis had dropped steadily.  “People are exhausted,” Mr. Cardero said. “They don’t want to hear one more thing from these politicians.”

I second that emotion.  So do most Americans, I believe.

Manuel de la Rocha Vázquez, an economic adviser in the Socialist Party, said Spain was so polarized that politics had turned almost into a brawl. “There are only insults and blame and arrogance,” he said.

I see your polarization and raise you Black Lives Matter riots and politically motivated beatings.

“We already knew that politicians were corrupt, but now we also see that they can’t even make politics work,” said Ana Cancela.

Yep, here too.

The only sad news I saw from this whole failure of the Spanish government is this.

Joaquín Sánchez Sanz, the director of a nuclear fusion lab for the government agency Ciemat, said he spent about 40 percent of every day dealing with cutbacks imposed by the caretaker government.  Just five days before a contract was to be signed to supply cooling equipment to a lab in Japan, the project was canceled, Mr. Sánchez Sanz said. Moreover, every agency contract not already signed was canceled.

Ultimately, the lesson the Spanish have learned is just how unnecessary most government is.

“A lot of people said we would go to hell if we didn’t form a government,” said Ignacio Escolar, the editor of the news website “But we’re still here.”

Seeing this gives me hope.  Maybe we can elect ourselves the Spanish Candidate this year.  By that, I mean nobody.  We don’t need them.  Like Rafael Navarro said, fire 75% of government employees.  Divide the budget money allocated to these worthless bureaucrats between the Military, FBI (make sure Director Comey is included in the firings), Border Patrol, NASA, CDC, Park Service, and National Laboratories.  Then they can just shut off all the lights in the government buildings in DC and go home.

I’m pretty sure, we’ll do just fine.

5 Replies to “The Spanish Candidate”

  1. Yes.

    Also in the same article:

    “For a Spanish citizen, the most relevant government is the regional one,” said Santiago Lago Peñas, an economics professor in the Galicia region in northwest Spain

    Santiago hit the nail on the head. Most affairs where you may need a government should be handled locally.


  2. Seems like a few steps on the road to a more wonderful future! 😀 The mythical earthly paradise of Shangri-La was not great because it had a massive governing structure. 😉

    On a different aspect, the term “polarization” isn’t appropriate here, IMO. Polarization means the vast majority is pushed to one of two extremes, with little to no middle. If one has innumerable parties along a spectrum, with none having a clear advantage in numbers, that is not polarization.


  3. There’s a meme image I’ve seen going around. As with most such images, the important part was the text: “Saying people can’t live without government is like saying animals can’t live without farms.”



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