Between the devil and the deep blue sea

ESPERANZA AGUIRRE: Would happily run as Madrid mayor.

ESPERANZA AGUIRRE let it be known that she would happily run as Madrid mayor should the PP ask her.

A former minister in the Aznar governments during the Nineties, Aguirre was president of the Madrid Community until she resigned after being diagnosed with now-overcome breast cancer. She is still secretary general of the regional PP party and would have a good chance of winning as she is as popular as she is controversial.

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But will the party ask her?  Aguirre challenged Mariano Rajoy when he lost the 2008 general elections, she is still critical of his leadership and if the PP had a Tea Party, she would be in it.

What will the president do?  Accept the offer and swallow his misgivings? Choose someone else and risk losing City Hall?  This will be a tough one.

Oiling the wheels

THE Centre of Political and Social Studies (CEPS) worked with the Venezuelan government until early 2014.

Most Podemos leading lights belong to CEPS which is now estranged from Caracas owing to government abuse and repression of its opponents while turning its attentions back to Spain. Here, according to CEPS vice president Fabiola Meco, there are “indications” that Spain would be receptive to the ideas and ideals of Venezuela’s late president Hugo Chavez who wanted a Bolivarian socialist revolution.

What many Spaniards are receptive to is a Bolivarian revolution backed by Venezuela’s huge oil reserves.  Remove those and both Bolivar and revolution would be non-runners.

Cyber footprints

PUBLIC PROSECUTORS who specialise in investigating corruption cases have noticed files missing from their computers.

Prosecutors who had not backed up files on external hard discs have lost months of work, said the Anti-corruption department.

Most intrusions involved organised crime investigations into Russian, Italian and Chinese mafias in Spain. One related to Herve Falciani who disclosed details of 130,000 tax evaders of all nationalities who have – or had – accounts with HSBC Switzerland. Falciani, still wanted in Switzerland, was arrested in Spain but later released because he had not breached Spanish law and supplied information regarding HSBC Switzerland’s Spanish clients.

Not all the hackers focused on international corruption, as another Prosecutor assisting the Gurtel case noticed that files went missing from her computers.

But computer wizards are too clever for their own good.

Watergate needed a whistle-blower before coming to light, but hackers blow their own whistles and leave their own muddy footprints, especially the Russians that Spanish police are now tracking down.

Preparing for a massacre

AS Podemos erodes the two-party system there have been hints of pacts between the PSOE and the PP after the November general elections.

PSOE leader Pedro Sanchez firmly ruled out talk of agreements, but that’s because he has more options than Rajoy. And it already looks as though both parties are admitting to themselves that there is going to be a bloodletting come November.


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