Today the cross-party Anti-Recession Commission meets for the first time in Madrid to sort out once and for all the problems that the Spanish economy is facing. To me it seems like a ‘Big Talk’ sketch from Mitchell and Webb: ‘Come on boffins, let’s sort it out now!’
I can only see two possible outcomes of this series of meetings (which will take up to two months, by which time how many people will be unemployed? Why hasn’t this been done before?) and here they are:
- Absolute disaster. The diametrically opposed parties find it impossible to come to any agreement about anything as they fail to reach consensus on cuts and how to generate employment. Another two months is lost and the economy continues to stagnate.
- A policy so-watered-down-it’s-transparent is published to a great fanfare. The PP have got their way in demolishing what the PSOE wanted to do whilst the PSOE can celebrate having at least reached a consensus on something. Two months have been lost and it’s unlikely the policies will work anyway.
Why won’t these potential policies work? Because it isn’t the PP’s interests to cooperate and rebuild the Spanish economy. They’re doing fabulously well (at least in their own eyes) sitting back and pointing out what is going wrong. The longer the recovery takes, the better for the conservatives. And then of course there’s the other reason why the policies won’t work: they won’t sort out the real structural problems with the economy because all the parties are afraid to do it (and because they benefit from this economic model.) That takes a great deal more explaining, and I’ll try to do so in the coming weeks.
The cross-party Anti-Recession Commission? Doomed (or perhaps programmed) to fail. I do hope I’m wrong.