Thursday, July 3, 2014

The Real Roger and his Overwhelming Team of Lawyers

Many months ago Roger "the man" Blackburn promised me the attention of a whole "team of lawyers". Now the sissy gives me only one. Here's quoting you, kid:

"Me dirijo a Vd. ostentando la representación letrada de Roger Lloret Blackburn en el procedimiento de conciliación previo a querella penal por injurias seguido en el Juzgado de Paz de Isona i Conca. Como habrá comprobado, hemos activado diligencias judiciales debido al grave perjuicio que le ocasiona a mi mandante la publicación de dos entradas en su blog donde lo califica de forma peyorativa, y atentando falazmente contra su prestigio profesional. En aras a la resolución de este conflicto, mi mandante intentó establecer sin éxito varias gestiones extraprocesales con su persona. Como el ámbito propio de la conciliación es el entendimiento y evitar una vía litigiosa que, sin duda, le ocasionará a Vd. exponenciales perjuicios, el Sr. Lloret Blackburn está dispuesto, de nuevo, a llegar a un acuerdo satisfactorio para ambas partes. Tras la última publicación en su blog, esta representación letrada no está dispuesta a “juegos” ni a ponderaciones exclusivas de su voluntad para entender satisfecha la reparación de las partes. Mi representado está conforme con escribir disculpas personales acreditadas a cada una de las personas a las que supuestamente haya podido ofender sus comentarios, si Vd. tiene a bien retirar el contenido injurioso de su página web y de todos los post en twitter haciendo referencia al Sr. Lloret, de los cuales ya se ha deducido testimonio probatorio.

Asimismo y paralelamente, se han activado los protocolos correspondientes con google y su recién reconocido “derecho al olvido”, con lo que nuestra propuesta se ve reforzada por dicho aspecto.

Esperando que sea de su conformidad lo presentado, me pongo a su disposición para resolver cualquier duda relativa en los números y direcciones de contacto al pie de este correo electrónico. En caso contrario, sin más dilaciones activaremos la querella penal anunciada; particular que, sin duda, no es la voluntad primigenia ni de mi representado, ni la mía propia.

Aguardando poder llegar a una conciliación, atentamente

José Manuel del Río

Asimismo y paralelamente, I ask you, dear reader: What can one answer to such niceties?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Catalan Protofascism by the Book

Yesterday I read an article that truly gave me the creeps. It is by Josep-Lluís Carod-Rovira, ex-Conseller en Cap (second in command) of the Catalan government, ex-leader of Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya (ERC), the party that has grown a lot lately, taking away many votes from Artur Mas's ruling centre-right nationalist CiU, with which it has a pact of governance in the Catalan parliament. It is the party that is basically the wheeler and dealer behind the separatist movement, with the aid of Mas's CiU.

I am quite grateful for this article, as it proves my point that Catalan nationalism is going into extremes. This article has a clear protofascist tone.

I have not the necessary time to translate it, so here are some bits and pieces. Carod establishes that there is a group in Catalan society the members of which are driven by what he calls "self-hate". Right at the beginning he says that one can "detect with precision the group of citizens that we could define as followers of the sect of self-hate".

Carod starts off with generalisations about the "sect of self-hate", to then show that its "followers" are all the same, down to not their noses or the faces they have, but the faces they make. It is a clear operation of de-individualising people, yet marking each of them as part of an enemy group.

They hate you. This is the marking.

Jews hated Germany. They hated all things German and wanted to corrupt society as part of a bigger, international plan. Jews had no home, no roots. Only greed: above all, Jews wanted money. Typification of their physiognomy allowed to recongise a Jew. That's what we heard back then in Germany. And in the ultimate consequence that the Jews had it coming.

Today in Catalonia all these elements but the racial one are being revived. And this is how it goes.

It is first established how much this so-called "sect" hates: "an infinite hatred against everything Catalan". Thereafter comes the part in which the members of this "sect" are depicted as obedient to outside influences. They are "followers of a cosmopolitanism without roots, which in practice always ends up being without Catalan roots", and they are, how else could it be, oriented towards Spain. This idea is sprinkled thoughout the text, while Spain is, quite consequently, both ridiculed and depicted as evil (the latter anyway being a common understanding among Catalan nationalists).

Another trope we know from anti-semitism, but which predates it much, is about health. In this article we find expressions such as "pathological contempt", "obsessive discomfort" and "behaviour loaded with all kinds of complexes, frustrations and traumas".

The element of money can be found thrice in the text. Some members of the "sect" are renegades because they haven't had the financial success they expected. Others come from families that "got rich with the Francoist dictatorship", while a third part is "mortified" by their humble upbringings, and one understands they, too, see a potential financial gain in belonging to the "sect" of traitors.

"In other cases, the geographic, cultural or linguistic origin plays a role", says Carod. What is common to all of the followers of the "sect" is that they are "excluding themselves from the possibility of being active participants in the Catalan national project".

This self-exclusion is effectively part of the self-hate this article is about. "Self-hate" is a term that is much used by Catalan nationalists criticising those who are not nationalists, and this article picks it up to turn it into something aggressive against others by taking the step from branding those who -supposedly- hate themselves as, in consequence, hating others too. Those others are the intended readership of the fervently nationalist outlet this article is published in.

What comes next in the article are reminders that this "sect" obeys to a foreign power ("Madrid") and that its followers hate themselves and Catalonia, to fulfil what was announced at the beginning and "detect" those people, finally telling everybody that "they are the easiest to be identified", and how. Nazism spoke of a typical Jewish face, Carod speaks of typical facial expressions: "They are those with the saddest and bitterest faces and who appear, in the eyes of everybody, as permanently angry. They never laugh, nor is any smile known to come from them, however slight it might be."

The phrase that most jumps out at me is "in the eyes of everybody". I am not sure if "als ulls de tothom" can be translated also, or even better, as "before everybody", which takes some edge off the impact, but not much off the meaning: people so stereotyped that they are can easily be recognised. This also dehumanises them, and makes them easier to hate.

It is this last part that turns the usual absurd ramblings of a nationalist into something much more sinister. This is now clearly a protofascist attitude. The resonances are evil, and it should not get a pass.

The abstract idea of hating (which for the intended reader becomes being hated by someone, with all that implies) is generally applied to a part of the population. This part of the population gets all individuality taken away in the process, to then again be burdened individually with complying to the general standards established before, made individually recognisable, become individually branded with the sins of hating, of greed and of obeying to a foreign element, and ultimately become the object of contempt and hate themselves, in an effect that can easily get out of hand and end up being very personal. All the while, no single shred of evidence is offered. All is built on common understandings, on the desired "I know someone like that" reaction.

On the ideological level, nothing more has to be done. It can be expected that people now come out with names, call them traitors, ask for actions to be taken. In the comments to this article, this has started immediately, as could not be expected otherwise. As desired.

I imagine Mr Carod leaning back in his armchair, satisfied. And tomorrow we will hear again how Catalonia's president Artur Mas calls his "process" of "national transition", and then whole independence movement, what he always calls it: "scrupulously democratic".

"Radically democratic."

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Roger is Back

Indeed, there he goes again. Finally, Mr Roger Lloret Blackburn has gone to court. A person I know well today had to appear before a justice of the peace for a "conciliació", meaning that the two parties were supposed to come to an agreement with the mediation of that judge. Apparently, Mr Roger Lloret Blackburn really wants me to erase the two entries about him. He thinks they might damage his career.

So this person I know well took a nice long ride on his bike. It was not too sunny, speed was mostly limited to 80 kph, and when he returned he felt like in the good old days, when while driving back to base he already wrote in his head the article he would file. Except for the odd bug that today landed in his mouth.

Speaking of bugs, the only downside on this wonderful day was that Mr Roger Lloret Blackburn didn't appear. He called in sick. He provided no further justification, so the case was closed. There being no double jeopardy in a "conciliació", Mr Roger Lloret Blackburn can file his charges again.

His lawyer, via telephone, offered to come to an extrajudicial agreement. This offer was kindly refused: "Thanks, but no thanks." Much appreciated that Mr Roger Lloret Blackburn did take a lawyer, the person I know well did not. Why bother.

Nonetheless, here is the offer, dear Roger. If you want me to take the entries offline, write an apology to Ángel Guillén and his friends. (See the tweet that started it all at the beginning of this entry, or the end of this one.)

I will judge if this apology is fair, and if I find it acceptable I will publish it here and take down the two entries in question. (And I should add: no more messing around, pal. Leave us alone. That certainly is also a condition. Or else the entries go up again.)

This is the best offer you will ever get, Roger. If you want to take the person I know well to court again, he will be authorised to reiterate it, but he will also seek compensation for himself.

Get well soon, Roger!

PS: The Streisand effect.

Monday, May 26, 2014

This Thursday: An Interesting Conference

"Federalistes d'Esquerres" (Fd'E) is organizing an important event on Thursday May 29th at 7pm in Barcelona on "Federalism in Europe and the World". It will take place at Palau Macaya, Pg. de Sant Joan 108. See info here.

Fd'E hopes that especially expats attend this conference.

The objective of this event is to show that the ideas and values of federalism provide an increasingly appealing answer to many of the problems of our world, including Catalonia, Spain and Europe of course.
The speakers at Palau Macaya will be:
-Jean Leclair, Professor at Montreal University
-Carme Valls, Vice-president of the World Federalist Movement.
-Francesc Trillas, professor at Autonomous University of Barcelona

There will also be online conversations through Skype during the event with other federalist representatives from different parts of the world. These will include:
-André Lecours, professor at Ottawa University and Idée Fédérale.
-Paolo Vacca, vice-president of the European Federalist Union and former president of the European Federalist Youth

There will be at least two more speakers via Skype. Their names will be confirmed later.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Quin problema té Pilar Rahola?

Els problemes de la Doctora Rahola amb la realitat s'estan agreujant. Les bajanades que arriba a dir ja comencen a ser tan hilarants que resulta difícil creure que són fruit de la seva habitual falta de professionalitat i moral.

Em refereixo a dos tuits seus d'aquest mateix matí, que citaré:

10:18 - "No assesso un govern, sinó un procés de país. Matís és fonamental. I faig anàlisi, no informació. Les dues coses poden ser"

Aquest tuit era una resposta a Xavier Rius, qui ha dit: "No t'hauries d'haver fet mai membre del CATN. O assessores un govern o fas de periodista. Les dues coses alhora no pot ser :)"

Un minut més tard, la Doctora Rahola continuava: "Recorda que el CATN és un acord dels partits que estan amb el procés de la consulta."

Primer de tot, estic d'acord amb en Rius. Com a més tard, després de descobrir-se l'escàndol dels seus doctorats falsos i diverses altres mentides com la de "La Haia, La Haia", Pilar Rahola hauria d'haver estat cessada del CATN i acomiadada de La Vanguardia. (Recordeu? És aquell diari de "La Dignitat de Catalunya"...)

El CATN fou creat pel Decret 113/2013, perquè el Govern dels millors, de manera totalment coherent, creia "oportú dotar-se del millor assessorament jurídic i polític possible". Segons aquest decret, el CATN és un "òrgan col·legiat de suport al Govern".

De fet, seria molt estrany que no fos així. No s'assesora un procés, ni s'assesora cap acord. S'assessora una institució (o una persona, o un grup), aquest matís fonamental allunya de la indefinició i porta a una necessària seriositat, sobretot perquè la institució de què es tracta aquí és pública. I s'entén des d'aquesta perspectiva que l'esmentat decret preveu que el CATN estigui "compost per persones de reconegut prestigi".

El que vol fer creure la prestigiosa Doctora és que és independent del Govern, que es deu només al país i que per això no hi ha cap conflicte d'interessos amb la seva labor d'"anàlisi, no informació". Com si el món no estigués ja massa ple de salvapàtries.

"El vi a la tona i la dona borratxa" és una dita molt maca que he aprés dels pagesos. Ho vols tot, però no pot ser.

Pel que fa a aquesta dona... Ja m'enteneu.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

¿Se disculpará Colomines?

"Qui s'inventa la seva bio no pot pretendre q el creguem. Joaquim Coll no és profe de la UB ni acadèmic." Este tuit de Agustí Colomines va acompañado de una foto de la presentación escrita de los ponientes de la conferencia con Allen Buchanan que el miércoles pasado organizó la Fundación Olof Palme.

De entrada, el tuit de Colomines se revela como pura calumnia. El autor de esta presentación, cuatro hojas en total de 11 personas, no era el mismo Coll, sino la Fundación. Lo que se dice ahí, no lo dice él. El profesor Colomines tiene un problema fundamental si no sabe leer bien las fuentes en las que basa sus observaciones.

Es Colomines quien no puede pretender que le creamos. Pobres tontos que le hicieron caso, ahí en las respuestas al tuit están. Todos ellos felices de poder atacar al disidente Coll. Jauría. No recuerdo que alguno de ellos, Colomines incluido, haya criticado a la Doctora Rahola, ese sí que era un caso, y bastante gordo. Pero ahí sigue Rahola, tanto en La Vanguardia (periódico que no parece tener dignidad, porque Rahola le tomó el pelo y no hay consecuencias) como en el CATN (que es de Mas, así que ni busco dignidad).

En este mondo bizzarro en que han convertido Cataluña, en esta Cataloonia de olor a gasolina, muchos ya hace tiempo han perdido el sentido común, y en casos como el de Colomines su profesionalidad. Achacar el error a quien claramente no es su autor es de una falta de lógica indigna para el cargo académico que ocupa.

Desgraciadamente, los problemas con la realidad del profesor Colomines no se acaban aquí. Cataloonia, ya lo he dicho. En la conferencia, a la que asistió Colomines, la presidenta de la Fundación Olof Palme, Anna Balletbò, presentó a Coll como profesor de la UB. Coll la corregió, y Balletbò se disculpó con las palabras: "Lo siento, ha sido un error mío."

Eso es precisamente lo que se hubiera deseado ver en el caso de Rahola, que decenas de veces fue presentada como "doctora en Filología Hispánica y en Filología Catalana", y ni una sola vez tuvo la dignidad de corregir. Tiene un Honoris Causa, seguramente no sabe latín para sacar alguna conclusión de esta expresión.

¿Dónde estaba Colomines cuando Balletbò corregió su error? ¿Durmiendo? Ah, quien duerme no tuitea, eso lo entiendo. Entonces lo que toca ahora es que se disculpe con Coll.

Colomines ha sido intelectualmente deshonesto para con Coll y todos los lectores de su Twitter. Ha perdido credibilidad, y la única manera de recuperarla es reconociendo su error y disculpándose.

Rahola nunca lo hizo, porque nunca lo hace. Ella decía ser doctora doble en su propia bio en la web que lleva su foto, su nombre y su firma. El error fue de la secre, como ella dijo. Hay gente que vive a ras de suelo, què hi farem.

De Colomines espero mucho más. Lo defendí hace poco. Me lo agradeció. Ahora te toca, Agustí.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Mea maxima hilaritas

El partido Reagrupament, fringe and splinter party if there ever was one, ahora asociado a CiU, ese gran partido que fue y a ver cuando volverá, se ha inventado otra iniciativa. Escribir a la ONU para pedir amparo y poder votar en un referéndum de autodeterminación.

No sólo es hilarante porque la argumentación parte de la idea de que Cataluña es un territorio oprimido (cual Kosovo, vaya, camino al súper he tenido que saltar tres cadáveres por lo menos), sino porque -¡oh, sobre todo por eso!- cita al TIJ re Kosovo traduciendo del francés al inglés lo que el mismo texto ya ofrece en ambas lenguas. Como si de hacer mofa del independentismo se tratara -y no sé si de los catalanes en general, allá ellos- la traducción es mala. Léanlo, comparen, está en el punto 79.

Kosovo, porta coeli.