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Reuters: Socialists led Spain from boom to bust

No wonder our media are so eager to downplay the Spanish election:

Voters vented their rage on the Socialists, who led the country from boom to bust in seven years in charge. With 5 million people out of work, the European Union’s highest jobless rate, Spain is heading into its second recession in four years.

. . . .

The PP won the biggest majority for any party in three decades, taking 186 seats in the 350-seat lower house, according to official results with 98 percent of the vote counted.

Emphasis added.  Boom to bust seems to be the story of what happens when governments increase their meddling in the economy.



  1. And someone, maybe Paul Krugman, will opine that they failed because they didn’t spend and regulate enough.

    Comment by V the K — November 20, 2011 @ 7:53 pm - November 20, 2011

  2. Spain mortgaged itself heavily to gain entry into the EU and it got addicted to state socialism in the process. Economically, it has been fragile, but now it is in crisis. (As is Portugal.)

    However, I suspect Spain is better prepared psychologically to cut back on the utopian myth than a country like France or even England.

    The EU basket cases are Spain, Italy, Greece, Portugal and Ireland. Whether the EU can hold and maintain a single currency is doubtful, in my mind.

    I hope that the new conservative government takes an axe to the socialist programs immediately. Buying votes by transferring wealth is fine until (as Lady Thatcher so brilliantly put it) you run out of other people’s money.

    How the EU expects to survive by the few strong economies bailing out the weak ones is beyond me. It would be the same effect if Washington bailed out the states who are deep in debt.

    Comment by Heliotrope — November 20, 2011 @ 7:55 pm - November 20, 2011

  3. Three of the five Eurozone countries in the worst economic shape were led by socialists (Spain, Portugal, and Greece). Ireland was led by centrists.

    According to, he state with the most debt is Massachusetts. The states with the least debt are Idaho and Wyoming.

    There’s a pattern here.

    Comment by Naamloos — November 20, 2011 @ 8:23 pm - November 20, 2011

  4. Have you noticed the maps show the socialist wins as red? I always figured the reason the Demoncrats in the US are colored blue was the media figured coloring them red would be giving the game away. Apparently they are more honest in Spain.

    Comment by Kevin — November 20, 2011 @ 10:25 pm - November 20, 2011

  5. #4

    I have always wondered why states that vote Republican are referred to as red states and why states that vote Democratic are referred to as blue states. In most places (including UK, Canada, France, Spain, Australia, and New Zealand) centre-right parties are blue and centre-left parties are red (which makes sense, considering red is the colour associated with socialism/communism). Based on the precedent, it seems odd that the parties in the US would do the opposite (to my knowledge, this colour scheme originated fairly recently).

    Comment by Naamloos — November 21, 2011 @ 12:52 am - November 21, 2011

  6. Based on the precedent, it seems odd that the parties in the US would do the opposite

    For a country that couldn’t adopt the metric system, it doesn’t seem odd at all.

    Comment by Cinesnatch — November 21, 2011 @ 5:50 am - November 21, 2011

  7. Did you know this about Henry Ford?

    The Ford Sociological Department was created to administer the plan by sending field agents into the community to visit workers at home to determine the quality of their home lives. It was believed that influencing the behavior of employees at home would turn them into better workers. All employees over 22 were eligible for the plan, which included a shortened work day from nine to eight hours in addition to the opportunity to earn five dollars per day. In order for a worker to be eligible to receive his share of the company’s profits he “must show himself to be sober, saving, steady, industrious and must satisfy the…staff that his money will not be wasted in riotous living.” Workers who didn’t comply risked being payed half as much for performing the same work as their co-workers, and could eventually lose their jobs.

    Did you know about Fordlandia, his idyllic village in Brazil where his rubber plantation was established? Do you know about peonage and the Hollywood and academic swells who bring in people from distant lands to house and educate while they allow them to dust or cook or baby sit or whatever?

    Did you know that owing your soul to the company store could be slipped over on you and it does not have to be blatant, crass exploitation?

    Did you know that Tom Daschle had a limo driver show up at his door every day and he just thought it was some form of charity and in no way a matter of income to be taxed?

    Do you see the socialist state in any of this? Do you see big-hearted people administering “kindnesses” for the little people who are trapped in a politburo bureaucracy and cheapened and hooked on the system?

    Do you see the mortgaging of freedom in exchange for a declining opportunity for independence and climbing out of your hole? Do you see how bread riots begin?

    Perhaps Spain is beginning to.

    Comment by Heliotrope — November 21, 2011 @ 9:46 am - November 21, 2011

  8. Don’t expect too much. The Spain that defended the Alcazar hasn’t been around for a while now.

    Comment by DaveP. — November 22, 2011 @ 6:33 pm - November 22, 2011

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