Wednesday, July 25, 2007

It's Day Three without power in parts of Barcelona; the areas still down include Gracia, Guinardó, Camp de l'Arpa, Sagrada Familia, Viviendas del Congreso, el Clot, and Virrei Amat. I've got power but a lot of people I know--Alberto, Choni, Nicola, Montse, Toni--don't. The fruit shop, Pakistani grocery, and Bar Zeus are all still without power. The Café Flanders and Bar Vall (which have electricity) are packed, since they have hot coffee, cold beer, non-rotting food, and air-conditioning.

They're going to have a demonstration this afternoon on Calle Escorial, bang pots and pans, and cut off the traffic. I don't like demos because there isn't much point in holding public protests in a democracy. I dislike pot-banging even more because it bothers other ordinary citizens who have nothing to do with the problem. And I specifically hate it when demonstrators block streets and traffic. All that does is snarl things up and piss off even more people. So I am not going.

Everyone is really pissed off and heads are going to roll. My guess is that mayor Jordi Hereu, who has been invisible through this whole thing, and Antoni Castells, the counselor for industry, are the most likely decapitees.

Imma Mayol was forced to admit that the city government had no Plan B in case something like this happened, and the Socialist municipal and regional governments are furiously trying to cast the blame on everyone but themselves, backed up by Generalitat-controlled TV3, which is clearly acting as a government mouthpiece and not as a neutral news outlet.

Oh, yeah, get this. They've called in the Spanish Army in order to use its portable generators; it's called "Operation White Storm." I hear no protests from the Cataloonies about this centralist reactionary militarist interference in peaceful progressive Catalan life.

10,000 clients are still blacked out, and nobody knows when their service will be restored. Fecsa-Endesa hopes it will be today, but no promises of anything. 70 traffic lights are still down, and traffic is a mess all over this part of

One good thing: It's not particularly hot, and you don't really need air-conditioning, so nobody is dying from the heat as people did during the last big heat wave a couple of years back. The eco-weenies are claiming that our unsustainable non-solidarious consumer society is using too much electricity and that's why the blackout happened, which of course has nothing to do with anything.

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