Every little helps

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CO-PAGO, Spain’s new bogeyman who terrifies adults too, is simply token co-payment for using the country’s health system.

It is now struggling under government spending cuts but although everyone everywhere wants something for nothing, benefit-dependency on a UK scale is unknown – and impossible – in Spain.

Healthcare has nevertheless been untouchable until now but the debt-ridden Cataluña autonomous region has decided to introduce a €1surcharge on prescriptions.

And why not? Shelling out an extra euro is preferable to a bankrupt health system.

Something to be grateful for

THE autonomous elections in Andalucia and Asturias on Sunday began, continued and peaked with their usual amount of bile, backbiting, bickering and bathos.

One element was, as always, thankfully absent because politicians here are not required to slobber over babies, parade their children or flaunt their wives.

Spanish politicians have omitted to learn many lessons, but here is one they could teach their media-courting colleagues elsewhere.

When the camera lies

THE photograph of a woman prostrated in front of Valencia riot police during last month’s student protests was staged, announced Interior minister Jorge Fernandez Diaz.

The minister’s relief, camouflaged as irritation, was premature because the woman, a performance artist, said it was obvious that she was posing.

And there are too many genuine photographs of the police charges against high school pupils to let him off the hook.

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