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Vive la Independencia

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Vive la Independencia
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SparhafocPosts: 1543Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Vive la Independencia

With the events in Catalonia this week, and Scotland's re-referendum on the not-too-distant horizon, there seems to be a quite dramatic contemporary challenge to democracy.

For example, Spain's central government describes any suggestion of a vote for secession as 'anti-democratic' which is as far removed from my comprehension of democracy as can be imagined.

On the other hand, can Scotland continue running referendums until they achieve sufficient numbers and consequently commit to a then irreversible course?

Would a victory in either nation spell a wave of similar movements in Western democracies?

What are the actual logical arguments for opposing self-determination?
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
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Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:39 pm
thenexttodiePosts: 799Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2015 7:59 pm Gender: Male

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

Sparhafoc wrote:With the events in Catalonia this week, and Scotland's re-referendum on the not-too-distant horizon, there seems to be a quite dramatic contemporary challenge to democracy.

For example, Spain's central government describes any suggestion of a vote for secession as 'anti-democratic' which is as far removed from my comprehension of democracy as can be imagined.

On the other hand, can Scotland continue running referendums until they achieve sufficient numbers and consequently commit to a then irreversible course?

Would a victory in either nation spell a wave of similar movements in Western democracies?

What are the actual logical arguments for opposing self-determination?


What about the people in Catalonia who don't want to be secceded from their country? Should Spain just abandon them?
“..the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.” Tolstoy
Mon Oct 02, 2017 8:22 pm
WarKChat ModeratorUser avatarPosts: 1186Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 9:59 am Gender: Tree

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

thenexttodie wrote:
What about the people in Catalonia who don't want to be secceded from their country? Should Spain just abandon them?


Russia used that exact excuse to invade Ukraine and Georgia.
Did you see that ludicrous display last night?
Mon Oct 02, 2017 8:36 pm
VisakiUser avatarPosts: 776Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:26 pmLocation: Helsinki, Finland Gender: Male

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

Sparhafoc wrote:What are the actual logical arguments for opposing self-determination?

Well, rule of law as a principle comes to mind. The whole thing seems to be against the constitution of Spain. If they want to change that constitution they need the majority of citizens of Spain to do that.

Also some people, when talking about the locals, actually want to be part of Spain and it is not clear in the least which side is the majority. No, I'm not putting any weight on that farce of an election they put up in Catalonia, it's a parody of democratic voting.

Also where should be put the limit? If a rich part of a country wants to secede because they don't want to pay for the poor part is that ok? If my town wants to secede is that ok? If I want my apartment to be it's own state should it?

Also even if we think secession is ok that doesn't mean the new Catalanian state has any rights to the property of Spain in that area.

Also it is clear why Russia seems to be ramping up pro-Catalonia propaganda.

Also I really should use the word "also" less.

Apart from that I have no real principle against Catalonia from seceding from Spain, though I do think it's a stupid idea and will destabilize both the peninsula and the EU which is a really bad thing at this moment (not sure what a good moment would be). Like Brexit I do not think that they really realize what they have coming to you if they succeed.
Tue Oct 03, 2017 9:16 am
WarKChat ModeratorUser avatarPosts: 1186Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 9:59 am Gender: Tree

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

Also, last time I heard the turnout was less than 50%. I don't know what the law about such things in Spain says but seems like a bad idea to let a minority decide such an important thing.
Did you see that ludicrous display last night?
Tue Oct 03, 2017 6:15 pm
SparhafocPosts: 1543Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

thenexttodie wrote:What about the people in Catalonia who don't want to be secceded from their country? Should Spain just abandon them?


Democracy is the tyranny of the majority.
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
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Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:48 am
SparhafocPosts: 1543Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

Visaki wrote:Also some people, when talking about the locals, actually want to be part of Spain and it is not clear in the least which side is the majority. No, I'm not putting any weight on that farce of an election they put up in Catalonia, it's a parody of democratic voting.



It seems a bit unfair to blame the quality of the vote when you've got a jackbooted gestapo kicking down doors and beating up the voters.
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
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Last edited by Sparhafoc on Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:49 am
SparhafocPosts: 1543Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

WarK wrote:Also, last time I heard the turnout was less than 50%. I don't know what the law about such things in Spain says but seems like a bad idea to let a minority decide such an important thing.


See, it's an intriguing notion. If a polity is looking to secede from a nation, then that nation's law prohibiting secession seems redundant.

Is this the 'true democracy' the Spanish central government expects? For Catalonians to work to change the laws of the entire Spanish continent so that they can then get the right to secede? It seems a strange bar to set: like inviting English, Welsh, and Northern Irish voters to decide if Scotland has the right to leave the union.
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
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Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:54 am
VisakiUser avatarPosts: 776Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:26 pmLocation: Helsinki, Finland Gender: Male

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

Sparhafoc wrote:
Visaki wrote:Also some people, when talking about the locals, actually want to be part of Spain and it is not clear in the least which side is the majority. No, I'm not putting any weight on that farce of an election they put up in Catalonia, it's a parody of democratic voting.


It seems a bit unfair to blame the quality of the vote when you've got a jackbooted gestapo kicking down doors and beating up the voters.

Well, they were breaking the law and perhaps commiting treason (morally, if not legally). Not that I think police brutality is a good answer but there is a thing to say about trying to stop an illegal separatist action. It's actually silly to think that this illegal election would have gotten no police response from the government. Even without the "jackbooted gestapo" the election would have been illegal and meaningful only as a propaganda tool.

I really get a far-populist vibe about this whole Catalonian independence movement, specially how it has moved forward. It just seems so hamfisted, pushing forward with an option they must know will be opposed by the state as soon as they got the power to do so. That might only be because I am not really following the situation over the years.
Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:18 am
SparhafocPosts: 1543Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

Visaki wrote:Well, they were breaking the law...


But that's really not a very strong argument, is it?

Laws can be good or bad, enhance freedom or repress people.

If the act of seeking self-determination through a peaceful democratic vote is illegal and to be repressed with riot police, then how is it really different than a tinpot dictatorship?

To me, the modern, democratic and mature way for Spain to deal with this would have been to say 'have the vote, but it's non-binding'.

Instead, what we've got now is clear repression - and violent repression at that.


Visaki wrote: and perhaps commiting treason (morally, if not legally).


I am not clear what moral treason is. To me, it can't be treasonous to seek self-determination.


Visaki wrote:Not that I think police brutality is a good answer but there is a thing to say about trying to stop an illegal separatist action. It's actually silly to think that this illegal election would have gotten no police response from the government. Even without the "jackbooted gestapo" the election would have been illegal and meaningful only as a propaganda tool.


Laying aside the problematic notion of it being illegal, which I think is like a black hole of reason, your final sentence lays it bare. Holding the vote would cost the Spanish government nothing and show that Spain is a healthy democratic nation. For example, the Scotland referendum did not harm the union, and the UK's actions showed it was a worthwhile union to be in.

What Spain has done is ensure that Catalonia will become independent, whether now or later, whether peacefully or violently. They no longer have a reason to be part of that union.



Visaki wrote:I really get a far-populist vibe about this whole Catalonian independence movement, specially how it has moved forward.


Can you clarify what you mean by populist there? To me, it means 'for the common, ordinary citizen' which it clearly is given the public support, and has been stamped on by an elite.



Visaki wrote:It just seems so hamfisted, pushing forward with an option they must know will be opposed by the state as soon as they got the power to do so. That might only be because I am not really following the situation over the years.


My take is this: if you were part of a nation that you did not feel you belonged to, had a vibrant, unique and independent culture, and many of your fellows felt the same way, then you'd quite possibly want to seek self-determination too. I doubt anyone expected the Spanish government to go in boots first. Instead, I expect they were looking for a moral argument based on a democratic majority vote.

Just for a moment, let's assume that 90% of Catalonians want independence from Spain - do you think it's anti-democratic for them to seek that?
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
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Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:11 pm
Dragan GlasContributorUser avatarPosts: 2956Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 1:55 amLocation: Ireland Gender: Male

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

Greetings,

From the reports I've seen, there are a number of issues surrounding this "vote".

Firstly, the Catalonian authorities did not follow the required procedures for holding referenda.

Secondly, the referendum is being promulgated as a result of extremist elements within Catalonia - it is by no means supported by the region's populace.

Thirdly, in order to get around the court order against the referendum, the Catalonian authorities allowed votes to be cast anywhere - there are reports that there have been more votes than residents being counted as a result. [One should also note that, in ignoring a court order, they are breaking the law, and not abiding by the rule of law. How can they then expect this referendum to carry any weight in a court of law?]

Fourthly, under Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution, the Spanish government can impose direct rule on autonomous regions.

Perhaps the most tragi-comic aspect of this is the statement that they're not looking for a "hard break" from Spain!

Given that it's already an autonomous region, what other option is available to them?

What if the Spanish government cut off all federal funding to them?

It's a ludicrous utopian fantasy typical of those who push for independence - they simply don't think things through, and imagine that independence solves everything.

As to the violence of the Spanish police, it may have been excessive, which hasn't helped the cause of those opposing independence but the fact remains that the referendum was illegal. The Spanish authorities had every right to prevent an illegal vote.

Kindest regards,

James
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"The Word of God is the Creation we behold and it is in this Word, which no human invention can counterfeit or alter, that God speaketh universally to man."
The Age Of Reason
Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:14 pm
thenexttodiePosts: 799Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2015 7:59 pm Gender: Male

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

thenexttodie wrote:What about the people in Catalonia who don't want to be secceded from their country? Should Spain just abandon them?


Sparhafoc wrote:Democracy is the tyranny of the majority.


I don't really have a dog in this fight. But it is interesting.

Democracy is not a fail-safe method of determining a moral outcome. Most people realize this (hopefully.) This was realized by the writers of the US constitution, so the role of democracy was originally limited to a small part of government. They did not want people to be able to vote themselves money from the treasury. (This limitation was soon done away with. This is one reason why no real comprehensible policy is required to be elected into any branch of government in the US now.)
“..the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.” Tolstoy
Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:57 pm
SparhafocPosts: 1543Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

thenexttodie wrote:I don't really have a dog in this fight. But it is interesting.



Same. I am no more Catalonian than I am Scottish, but while I think both polities would be better off within their parent nations, I think this is an intriguing historical moment - a shift in some respects, and is going to require a refinement of democracy, or what we mean by it anyway.
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
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Wed Oct 04, 2017 5:33 pm
he_who_is_nobodyBloggerUser avatarPosts: 3339Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 1:36 amLocation: Albuquerque, New Mexico Gender: Male

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

I live next to a state that always wants to take its toys home and leave when a national vote does not go its way. My response to them is the same to this, let them go. They will not be missed.
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Wed Oct 04, 2017 6:44 pm
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thenexttodiePosts: 799Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2015 7:59 pm Gender: Male

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

thenexttodie wrote:I don't really have a dog in this fight. But it is interesting.



Sparhafoc wrote:Same. I am no more Catalonian than I am Scottish, but while I think both polities would be better off within their parent nations, I think this is an intriguing historical moment - a shift in some respects, and is going to require a refinement of democracy, or what we mean by it anyway.


After looking into this a bit more on my own and actually speaking with someone who knows a lot more about the history of this region, It seems to me that Catalonia should be allowed to do this. Spain failed to accept the possibility of little bit of autonomy going a long way. Or the right people were bribed enough money over the years. Bribery seems to be a way of life in Spain.
“..the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.” Tolstoy
Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:09 pm
SparhafocPosts: 1543Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:48 am

Post Re: Vive la Independencia

Sparhafoc wrote:What Spain has done is ensure that Catalonia will become independent, whether now or later, whether peacefully or violently. They no longer have a reason to be part of that union.


Looks like it could be sooner rather than later...

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-41913520

Catalonia crisis: Spain could allow referendums, says FM
Beliefs are, by definition, things we don't know to be true.
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Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:11 am
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