In spite of the media spin, the bottom line coming out of Catalonia’s elections is that the four separatist parties won a clear majority in parliament, and there will be a referendum on Catalonia’s independence in spite of Madrid’s opposition.
The big winner in the Catalan elections was the Republican Left which is Catalonia’s traditional separatist party. Artur Mas’s CiU is a moderate conservative pro-business party, which some have described as the Catalan equivalent of the Republicans, that only recently jumped on the secessionist bandwagon.
The story of the election is that the conservative CiU lost support to the more radical parties which have benefited from the now legitimized secession fever and who are skeptical of his support for austerity measures:
“As a result, before holding any referendum on independence, Mr. Mas will first have to strike alliances with smaller parties that share his separatist goal, but not his economic and social agenda. After a vote that he had described as “the most significant in the history of Catalonia,” Mr. Mas told supporters that his referendum project was on track, while recognizing his party’s failure to consolidate its grip on power.
“Mas managed to turn separatism into a burning issue, but then ended up being overtaken by more radical parties in this debate and now finds himself in a much harder position to govern Catalonia in a time of crisis,” said Ferran Pedret Santos, a lawyer who was himself elected for the first time Sunday as a Socialist lawmaker.”
I haven’t seen a MSM article yet that notes that the Socialists lost eight seats and the Madrid-backed People’s Party only won one more seat in the Catalan parliament. The CiU lost twelve seats and the Progressive Left picked up eleven seats. The other parties (two of whom support the independence referendum) won the remainder of seats in the 135 member Catalan parliament.
Southern Nationalists will be dissecting Catalonia’s precedent in the months ahead: secession is illegal under the Spanish constitution, the Spanish parliament in Madrid has voted to deny Catalonia a referendum on independence, and the Spanish Supreme Court has ruled that secession is illegal. Yet the Catalan Nationalist movement is steaming ahead in spite of these obstacles toward a referendum on independence.
We already know enough about what is going on in Spain to draw some firm tentative conclusions about why the Catalans are succeeding: all this is being driven by the financial crisis within the eurozone, a depression level of youth unemployment, and the debt load in Spain and Catalonia, historical and cultural grievances against Madrid that go back centuries, economic and cultural arguments for secession are dominating the debate, and the movement seems to be dominated by normal people who have connected with a mass constituency.
Maybe Texas could become the American version of Catalonia? You got to think at some point there will be a dollar collapse, a debt crisis, another sharp downturn in the American economy, a California bailout, the Democrats in Congress raising taxes, or any number of things that will continue to piss off the hardworking Anglo-Texans who will watch helplessly as their money flies out of their own pockets only to be redistributed by Washington into SNAP EBT cards and Obama phones and DREAM Acts for illegal aliens and California public employee pensions.
Throw into the mix the fact that Washington refuses to discharge its constitutional obligations and passively allows Mexico to invade Texas. How long will it be before Texans are calculating the value of this Union with the Northeast and West Coast?
Note: When we can put over a million people on the streets with signs that say things like “Dixie is not America” and “Goodbye USA” and “Obama Out of Texas,” then we will have a real “movement.”