Like the Labour Party in the UK, the PSOE, the Spanish socialist party is having a bad time at the moment. Parties of the left seem to be having difficulties all over the place at present. Some say they have lost contact with their traditional support groups, their fanbase, as it were. Maybe so. They need to get it together again. I am not impressed with the support that UKIP managed to gain in the UK, although I still maintain that they benefitted greatly from rather over the top media coverage. And I find the rise and rise of Marine Le Pen in France very troubling as well. We live in strange times.
However, even though the PSOE has been suffering, their 40 year old logo has been doing very well. A range of T-shirts printed with the logo has been selling tremendously in the USA. The logo is a left fist clenched around a red rose and has been printed on T-shirts sold by the clothes store Urban Outfitters. The original designer of the logo, José María Cruz Novillo, is reportedly quite flattered but the PSOE is not best pleased and is looking into the matter. legal action has not been ruled out. In the meantime Urban Outfitters have stopped selling the T-shirts but it is still available from a company called Stussy for $32 (£25.65) in black, white, pink or purple. That's fashion for you.
In a news report about Turkey the other day, I was struck by this stray comment: "It’s also worth remembering that Erdoğan got only 52% of the vote at the last presidential election in 2014." Now, isn't that the percentage vote in that referendum last June, the voice of the people saying that should leave the EU? Percentages clearly mean different things at different times and in different situations.
Meanwhile there has been a large anti-Brexit demonstration in London. And the EU's chief Brexit negotiator has apparently been saying that we should all be staying together if we want to combat terrorist attacks such as the recent one in Westminster. We shall see.
Uncertainty continues for EU citizens living in the UK. Here is something that was posted on the Forum for EU Citizens:
"Wish I had come to the march today.
I wasted my time with a job interview at one of the big supermarkets in a town nearby. It was a weird experience and I would like to share it. Probably just meaningless, but a bit annoying.
At the beginning of the interview, the interviewer, a young English lady, asked me if I brought my proof of right to work in the UK. I happily showed her my Dutch passport. She looked at it, over and over. 'Oh. Is this a passport from the Netherlands? Is this a real passport from the Netherlands?'
I said' yes, and this is proof of my right to work in the UK. I've been here for more than 9 years'.
'Oh. Well. I need to ask my manager if this is valid,' she said, and went away to speak to her manager. ;-)
After a few minutes she came back, telling me that the manager wasn't sure whether a Dutch passport proved my right to work in the UK, and she disappeared again, to ask another manager.
It was just a bit embarrassing for me.
After 5 minutes she came back, and told me that no one really knew if a passport from the Netherlands was a proof of right to work in the UK. Without giving me the chance to explain anything to her, she went off again. To call Head Office, to ask them if I have the right to work in the UK with a passport from the Netherlands....
She came back again, phew, Head Office opened at 9 am and it was still early morning....she kept on saying that she wasn't sure.
I then gave her a short lecture about the EU, the Netherlands, the UK and 26 other countries in it. About Brexit, Britain leaving the EU, and that Theresa May will invoke article 50 on Wednesday 29 March. And that, in the 2 years after that, we will still have the right to work in the UK, with our Dutch / German / Romanian....etc. etc...EU 27....passports.
It was so weird.
How is it possible that an (assistant) manager, who interviews people for jobs, doesn't know this? Don't they have a handbook in place? I mean, the magazine department of this supermarket is full of newspapers; how can they not know this? It's all over the news...
Anyway, I did not get the job. And I'm not sure if I would have accepted, if their staff don't even know these basic things.
Still have some applications for research jobs; hopefully something nice will turn up.
I'm not really upset or in tears. It was just weird and a bit embarrasing.
Wish I had come to the march instead.
Okay, end of rant. Thanks for listening and have a wonderful evening."
This is the sort of odd stuff that people have to put up with!