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February 22, 2010
The pain in Spain
Like the other European PIIGS--Portugal, Ireland, Italy and Greece--Spain is suffering from high unemployment and unsustainable indebtedness. Indeed, financial conditions are so bad that Moody's has ranked it number one on its Misery Index according to Soeren Kern writing in Pajamas Media.
So who is to blame for the pain in Spain? According to the top brains in Spain,
On February 8, Infrastructure Minister José Blanco said shadowy forces were ganging up on Spain. "Spain is the victim of an international conspiracy to destroy the country's economic status, and then, the euro," he said. "Nothing that is happening, including the apocalyptical editorials in foreign media, is just chance." Or more specifically, Spain's Prime Minister Zapatero
According to the center-left newspaper El País, which is close to the Zapatero government, the CNI is investigating "whether attacks by investors and the aggressiveness of some Anglo-Saxon media are being driven by market forces and challenges facing the Spanish economy, or whether there is something more behind this campaign."And even more specifically, imitating his counterpart in the US
The industry minister said Spain was facing an "imported problem." The deputy prime minister blamed Spain's problems on "radical liberalism," which in euro-speak means the free market. The labor minister blamed "the neo-conservative thinking preached by U.S. President George W Bush, which has resulted in capitalism without ethical limits." Zapatero himself blamed "the neo-conservative model based on capitalism without borders nor limits nor ethics."Other outside forces are sure to be mentioned; of course the reckless spending that brought Spain to this problem is not mentioned. Meanwhile, deficit or not, Spain managed to find $5 million for the release of three Spanish hostages kidnapped by al Qaeada in the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, in northwest Africa, in late November according to a report by the South African Press Association.
President George W. Bush, America, and the usual suspects haven't been blamed. Yet.