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Transform Or Die: Nine Years Of Service



The transition to democracy materialized in Spain with the approval in the Cortes, on November 18, 1976, of the eighth Fundamental Law of Francoism: the Law for Political Reform. The network of elites, great fortunes and Francoist politicians, was maintained. For years, those same great powers worked hard to inoculate us with the idea that the Transition was exemplary.

The bipartisan common sense —which was installed since the beginning of the 80s and which lasted until the outbreak of 15M— did nothing more than entrench the customs of corruption and clientelism, which since the construction of the Spanish State and even more so during the years of the dictatorship, have been the constant in the political life of our country. The institutional dimensions that corruption acquired in the Franco years continued unabated in the first decades of democracy. And although now we begin to glimpse another type of political management, the State Sewers, in collusion with media and economic powers, show that we have not been able to bury this endemic evil.

The appearance of Podemos in 2014 marked a before and after in the political life of our country. I do not intend here to explain and analyze how our organization was born. Rivers of ink have already been spilled in recent years and I could add little else, except my personal experience: illusion and commitment, which have led me to take the step into the institutional political arena in Podemos before any other political party. Even so, it is clear that a lot has happened in these last three years that I would like to try to put into proper perspective.

The coalition government — called by the media at the service of the “social communist” and “philoetarra” political right — has put on the table a new way of governing, far from the impertinent despotism typical of absolute majorities and reaching agreements with different forces to carry out, for example, three State Budget laws. Contrast, by the way, with the inability of Ayuso or Almeida, who despite their majority have not been able to approve the most important law that each administration has.

This formula of government —which every day with its management demonstrates that it works— was until recently inconceivable in a democracy. The last precedent was in 1936. And, paradoxically, that is something that a right wing unable to disassociate itself from its Francoist past has not forgiven.

During these three years, and with particular harshness in recent months, the media paid for and subsidized by the great powers have not stopped fueling Podemos and its leaders with hoaxes and manipulated news, because it is the first time that a force of government calls into question the indecent privileges of some. That is the difference between Podemos and the rest, which is the only truly transformative force and which has promoted measures that were unthinkable until today. Do you remember all the times we were told “you can’t”? Take an example: The cap on the price of gas. Something that we had been demanding for years and that they told us was impossible. Today, in Spain we pay a lower price than in the rest of the European countries, and we are advancing more decisively in the development of renewables. In parallel, we cannot forget the so-called “FerrerasGate” (click here if you want to know more), the clearest example of how the powers are willing to do anything as long as nothing changes, and why not say it, they also exemplify the crisis suffered by national journalism. Bad news for ordinary citizens who see their right to truthful information contained in Article 20 of the EC violated.

We have been accused of being stubborn, radical and even unsympathetic, harassing the figures of Pablo Iglesias and Irene Montero to infinity. Theft of telephones through a “patriotic police” at the service of the PP; illegal demonstrations day and night of madmen at the doors of his house; dehumanization; death threats… And also, putting into motion all possible propaganda machinery to twist public opinion. One day this anti-democratic aberration will be studied in Political Science universities.

During this time, we have been held responsible for all the ills of the country, the examples are many, but perhaps the pandemic was the historical moment where the powers put all their efforts in overthrowing a democratically constituted government.

Podemos is the necessary political tool to point out those who really profit from social injustice and pervert the institutions from their position of privilege. Those who today are determined to liquidate our project are sidelined in the face of corruption cases that would embarrass any democrat who loves public services. Those who today put all their forces into making Podemos disappear from the equation are the same ones who aspire to return to a bipartisanship that has only served to divide up the great cake of power in Spain.

We see it on practically all television when in the great debates between fellow members who have stopped inviting representatives of Podemos. Radio stations that every day instill merciless criticism of the purple formation. Anything goes to kill us. It has never been forgiven for giving normal people a voice on the street.

We see it in the informative silence that currently exists, and that I personally, and as a candidate for mayor of Madrid, suffer from some media. Democracy only for when we are interested.

Council of Madrid City

We see it in the institutions, for example in the Madrid City Council itself, with a mayor constantly whitewashed by an opposition that has not lived up to it. That he has agreed with Vox, Ciudadanos and PP, in the Villa Pacts and that he has been unable to make him pay for his excesses with the case of the masks. Two gentlemen enriching themselves with multi-million dollar figures while our people died in residences and hospitals, thanks to the mayor’s cousin.

We also see it in the neighborhoods of our city, completely forgotten by a political class that is more concerned about having their offices clean than that our streets are clean. And those are the ones who claim to represent the will of the citizens! I am tired of seeing my compatriots suffer abandonment by everyone, even by those who claim to be progressive. Who are silent too many times. The progress only for the photo. In Podemos we have always differentiated ourselves in something, and it is in not being the typical weather vane party, more concerned with opinion polls than with their own convictions. We are not going to win by proposing the same thing as the PP. We know what country we want. And that’s why he hasn’t stopped constantly persecuting us, even with false evidence. Where were those who claimed to be the new left then? Real politics in this country is only for the brave who are willing to fight the powerful. Not everyone is worth it, and that is why there are those who prefer to support NATO, put themselves in profile, or vote with the worst right when they are interested. Everyone chooses which side they are on. I have it clear.

Nine Years of Dignity

These are nine years of dignity and social progress, especially in these years of coalition government. To be fair with the rights conquered is to recognize what has been achieved. And a lot has been thanks to Podemos, to brave women and men who have put their faces and continue to put their souls to make this country a real full democracy.

At a time when the winds of intolerance and hatred are lurking again is when we must be firmer and more secure. It is now when we must push forward and demonstrate that Madrid is going to be the driving force behind the transformation that the Spanish government accompanies, to achieve a more dignified country and more livable cities.

During the last days I have watched with concern the speeches that have been adopted in the PP. The “enemies of Spain” that they said back in 1936 about republicans, liberals, socialists and communists return to impregnate the daily story. We see it in the vocabulary of the leaders of the PP, among them the mayor of Madrid, Martínez Almeida, when he equates us with ETA and stigmatizes us as if we were the evil that wants to end the country. Enough of speeches that endanger democracies and that can only lead us down the path of unprecedented social tension.

In May we have a new opportunity to put an end to this dangerous drift, and begin to fully understand that in Madrid there is no one left over and that another way of doing politics is possible. We have achieved it in the government of Spain and I am prepared with all my soul for it to be so in Madrid. Against all odds, against all pressures, to put the council at the service of the people, at the service of social welfare. That’s why I joined Podemos.

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115-Year-Old Maria Branyas Morera: The New Dean Of Longevity



After the death of Sister André at the age of 118 on January 17, Maria Branyas Morera became the new dean of humanity. This American-Spanish is 115 years old.

From the top of her 115 years, here she is at the top of the world. After the death of the French sister André, at the age of 118, on January 17, Maria Branyas Morera is now the new dean of humanity. This American-Spanish was born in the United States on March 4, 1907 in San Francisco. In 1915, her parents decided to return to live in Spain, where she still spends peaceful days today in a retirement home, at the Residència Santa María del Tura, located in the city of Olot, in the northeast of Spain. ‘Spain. “It is an honor to be able to continue to accompany her and take care of her” also explains the establishment in a publication on social networks, which also explains that she is today “in good health”.

Peaceful indeed, his life was not. In 1915, when her parents decided to return to live in Spain, Maria Branyas Morera lost her father to tuberculosis during the trip that took her and her family to Europe. The trip was particularly harmful: during the crossing, Maria Branyas Morera lost hearing in one ear. Today, at 115, the new dean of humanity still has health problems in her ear. The American-Spanish arrives in Spain with her family in the dismal theater of the First World War. It will also go through the Spanish Civil War (1936 – 1939), the Francoist dictatorship (1939 to 1977) and the Second World War. In the Catalan News, she thus describes wars “very harmful in Europe”. She also has “very bad memories” of the civil war.

“A New Year is a Gift”

In 1931, she decided to marry Joan Moret, a doctor with whom she would have three children, who in turn would have 11 grandchildren.

Her husband died at the age of 72. It was also struck by the COVID-19: “This pandemic revealed that the elderly are the forgotten of our society,” she said. The company, moreover,, the American-Spanish will have seen it transforming over the decades with the arrival of the Internet and its social networks which allow it to stay in touch with its family and even to tweet. The retiree notes, however, that people lived “more peacefully and happier” at the beginning of the 20th century.

And his secret for such longevity? Maria Branyas Morera says she is used to eating “little but everything”, and that she has never followed a diet. The dean also thinks “that longevity is also about being lucky. Luck and good genetics.” She prefers to favor “order, tranquility, a good connection with family and friends, contact with nature, emotional stability”. And to conclude: “Life is not eternal for anyone […] At my age, a new year is a gift, a humble celebration, a new adventure, a beautiful journey, a moment of happiness. Let’s enjoy life together. »

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Direct Rennes-Tours Train Connection Coming Soon



If things go as planned, the SNCF will soon no longer be the only company to depart trains from Tours station. This Monday, January 23, the private company Le Train confirmed its wish to launch two rail lines between cities in the Great West, without going through Paris: Bordeaux-Nantes and Bordeaux-Rennes. Two connections that would serve Tours-Centre station.

The idea would be to offer 5 daily rotations, with part of the journey on the Tours-Bordeaux high-speed line which is not yet at maximum capacity.

If the travel times, schedules or ticket prices are still unknown, we know a priori in what type of train these trips will be made: those of the Spanish manufacturer Talgo which already equips the equivalent of the SNCF in Germany (Deutsche Bahn ) and in Spain (Renfe). The trains would include 350 seats but above all up to 40 places for bicycles, which is not at all the case today for SNCF TGVs. They would also be fitted out with a single class.

The project should be completed in

2025, three years later than expected because Le Train had to revise its battle plan. He finally buys new trains because he is unable to obtain second-hand trains, despite his requests to the SNCF (there would be in particular a problem with machine components, deemed dangerous, and prohibiting their resale). That said, if the situation is unblocked, the company claims to be able to start its activities at the end of 2023. It would already have all the necessary authorizations (it currently has 150 employees).

If Le Train manages to launch, it would be the first new private company to invest in the high-speed train market in France, the other competitors of the SNCF being backed by large national companies. Ultimately, its objective is to offer several lines between regions.

It should also be noted that Tours could be served in the future by other lines of private rail operators with, for example, links to Normandy. There was also talk of the launch of a luxury train by Puy du Fou which would stop at the Château de Chenonceau.

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Air Europa Vs Iberia: Competitive Challenges



There is no doubt that the takeover of Air Europa by Iberia creates competition concerns. On many routes, it even reduces it to nothing. If we exclude Ryanair’s lower category product, which does not go to the same public, many travelers on Spanish domestic flights will be left without alternatives (Iberia and Air Europa, one step away from closing the operation).

Future of Air Europa

However, it is also true that since the future of Air Europa is very complicated due to the debt load it carries, it is better that its buyer be from the country. For Spain it would be very problematic if Air France kept it. As a strategy for Barajas and for Spain, the solution before us is the best.

The most important routes, those in Latin America, continue to have competitors, either Latam, Avianca, Air France or even in some cases even Lufthansa, offer alternatives. Also TAP, while still independent, does the Atlantic crossing. It is on these routes that fusion is strategically vital.

In the short radius, however, it is likely that the authorities have, should and will say something. Although Ryanair is now forced to grow in Spain, it is true that the offer and competition are limited. At the time Easyjet wanted to enter our country and even created some routes to Bilbao or Mallorca, but finally it chose to focus on France and Italy and more recently on Berlin. It would have been the solution: low cost, but higher level than Ryanair.

So there will be surprises on domestic flights, which could be good news for Volotea, which is financially very unstable today.

In any case, Spanish domestic flights are today an opportunity for new initiatives that probably either have to emerge or appear from other countries.

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