Tuesday, May 08, 2007

La Vanguardia's best columnist, Francesc-Marc Álvaro, reports on the Catalan reaction to Sarkozy's victory in France:

Sarkozy's victory was not popular in Catalonia, where the same old politically correct thing was to believe just as much in Royal as in Zapatero and his soft words and unfulfilled promises. TV3 blatantly showed us the mindset of this Catalan Wonderland. From our public television station's newsdesk, the big question of Sunday night to the correspondent in Paris was why Mrs. Ségolène did not win, since that is what should have happened. Catalonia always likes to talk more leftist than it really is, a large-scale imposture full of contradictions: for example, the grotesque example of those progressive leaders who send their children to elite private schools.

Here, almost nobody likes Sarkozy, although he is waving the flag of work and effort, positive values that fit in perfectly with Catalan meritocracy. Fear of the new president has struck deep into hipster Barcelona. Catalanists and Spainists agree in their support for the Socialist candidate. A Catalan radio survey last Friday showed an eloquent statistic: 73% of the calls were for Royal and 27% for Sarkozy. However, luckily, another truth has reached us from Perpignan. The Catalans of the north, who vote in France, are sure what they want. Nicolas Sarkozy triumphed in North Catalonia (Roussillon) with more than 55% of the vote. Why don't we listen to their point of view one of these days?

Something I thought was interesting: French citizens living abroad can vote in French elections at polling places set up by local consulates. The French who live in all of Spain went for Royal 51%-49%. Those who live in Madrid went for Sarkozy 54%-46%. Those who live in Barcelona went for Royal 58%-42%. Tells you something about the kind of expats that choose Madrid and those that choose Barcelona.

Looks like Zap's Berlin-Paris-Madrid Axis of Weasels has lost France and Germany. Now it's Zap all by himself with his buddies Chavez and Castro. It doesn't help that Zap actually participated in the Socialist campaigns in both Germany and France, endorsing and campaigning for the losers in both races and, of course, pissing off the winners. La Vangua says in its news pages that Zap has done a very poor job in European foreign policy, failing to take the lead in any meaningful initiatives while farting around with his brainchild Alliance of Civilizations.

Further comment on European nationalisms: Some Catalan nationalists are looking at the results of the Scottish election as a great victory, but they aren't considering the fact that the SNP did not win a majority and will have to pact with a non-nationalist party, likely Labour.

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