Rajoy embroiled in new corruption allegations.

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This topic contains 184 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Anonymous Anonymous 3 years, 9 months ago.

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  • #57252
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    We often discuss the corruption in Spain among town halls and their closeness to property developers. Now new allegations published by El Pais are swirling around the prime minister Mariano Rajoy and the PP. They are alleged to have received substantial illicit party funding from developers.

    http://www.ft.com and http://elpais.com/

    FT quote:
    The allegations come at a time when confidence in Spain’s political elite has hit an all-time low with evidence of mounting popular anger at a string of high-profile corruption cases, including one brought against Iñaki Urdangarin, son-in-law of King Juan Carlos, who is accused of embezzling millions of euros from charitable organisations.

    “The level of trust in politicians in Spain is very, very low, and corruption is one of the main problems,” said Antonio Argandoña, professor of Business Ethics and Economics at IESE Business School. “Politicians must tackle this problem before any more damage is done”.

    A recent poll for El Pais newspaper suggested that 96 per cent of Spaniards believed that political corruption was “very high”.

    Mr Rajoy had previously ordered an internal investigation of his party’s finances after other newspaper reports alleging that Luis Barcenas, a former PP treasurer who stepped down as a result of a corruption probe, had regularly given out cash payments to senior party officials. The scandal originally broke after Spain’s national court reported that Mr Barcenas had built up a €22m fortune in a Swiss bank account.
    Mr Barcenas was later revealed to have taken advantage of a fiscal amnesty passed by the Rajoy government to allow money held abroad to be brought back to Spain if the owner paid a 10 per cent tax on it – less than half the country’s income tax rate.

  • #114870
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Alleged that Rajoy received 25,200€ pa. for 11 years from the corrupt Barcenas. 😯 It was never declared. El País publlshed a photo of an account book showing the payments to Rajoy and other PP members.

    The scandals keep on coming but no one seems to get a prison sentence!

  • #114872
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    You’re both regurgitating yesterday’s news, and it has already been discussed on this forum in the ‘living in Spain’ section.

    Having said that, I totally agree with you, the corruption in Spain is total, from top to bottom, a total disgrace.

    I love the country and will talk it up whenever I can, but when it comes to corruption I have to agree that it’s a national disgrace. I can’t even think of a single reason to excuse it.

    On the last day in January here in Spain the temperatures hit 25 degrees. I was out with the people I love, soaking it up, an unbelievable lift to the soul in troubled times, and I didn’t think of the negatives once, not until this thread, not that I mind.

  • #114873
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I’ve read that also the Mayor of Albox has resigned….. again another corruption case? Blimey, the number of illegal builds there must have paid well during the boom years?!

  • #114874
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I also hope that they highlight the corruption by the PSOE and not make all this a PP bashing stunt. The boom years of Zapatero must have been rife with corruption. The general public want the PP out because they don’t want anymore cuts but what else would any other government do, the country is in dire straits (although most of the cash seems to be with the big players as before).

  • #114875
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    What happened in Albox is typical of the rest of Spain, corrupt local government cheating corrupt regional government, resulting in mostly British expats being cheated.

    There are Alboxes all over expat Spain, tens of thousands of them. So far, as far as I know, the corrupt Spanish administrations have only demolished one ‘illegal’ house, the Priors. It has probably cost Spain millions in Brits stopping buying in Spain.

    But when you sit in the sun overlooking the blue Mediterranean, you forgive, just about anything. And if you don’t, you screw your face up and post nasty things about Spain from the internet.

  • #114878
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    My Facebook page is burning with all of the posts by Spaniards regarding this scandal. My question is, how can Germany, the EU, etc. have any faith in the Spanish government?

    Throwing PP out of every office seems to be the only responsible thing to do. And no, advocating for the removal of criminals who have been caught is not the same as advocating for PSOE. While I am definitely more to the left politically, being American means that I trust no party to do the right thing. However, there are degrees of both good and bad, and if someone is caught with ethical or criminal problems, off with their heads, be they right or left.

    My issue with PP is even when they were not being criminals, their approach to solving problems is 100% adherence to ideology, instead of doing some thoughtful analysis.

    Fasten your seat belts as were in for a very bumpy ride with this one.

  • #114879
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    When corruption reaches the top echelon of the political system you know something is really bad. What’s even worse is how they try to shrugg it away. You can hardly fault normal people when they try to get away with a few euros when even their leaders do it. A leader should be judged upon how they act and not by what they say one should do.

  • #114881
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Illegal political party funding is where many politicians careers in many diverse countries lie buried. They become involved in it by creating a firewall between the minions who actually carry it out and themselves. They believe even if it’s discovered they can survive by denying it, believing the smoking gun does not exist.

    The real question here is moral authority, without it any senior political figure is doomed. The bad smell will linger on.

    Jacques Chriac did it for year and years until he was finally brought to book in the sunset of his life.

    They do it because they believe gaining power is the only thing that matters and the favours the corrupt payments are really designed for can be denied to the donors once they reach office. Usually if that happens the donor finds a way to make matters public.

    Corruption in all it’s forms undermines a society. It matters a great deal that corrupt officials are rooted out and exposed. The media play a vital role in that. Our democratic freedoms depend on it.

  • #114882
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    We are what our history made us, whether we like it or not. The French people showed us the way when they used the guillotine to get rid of rampant corruption and the misuse of power. Russian people were not far behind, they shot their lot. A tea party in America cleansed that large part of the world.

    But the remnants of corruption and the misuse of power are still evident in Old Europe, especially in Spain and England with their King and Queen.

    Spain has the additional burden of being a young democracy, still finding its way in a strange world. A world of brown envelopes, as the latest scandal shows.

    There’s not much an expat can do, but my wife is about to make her small contribution. She’s going to shop at Iceland this morning.

  • #114883
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    There’s not much an expat can do, but my wife is about to make her small contribution. She’s going to shop at Iceland this morning.

    “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”
    ― Edmund Burke 1729 – 1797.

  • #114884
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I agree with Mr Burke’s famous saying and I’m scratching my head to consider what I can personally do with this corruption all around me. It’s everywhere.

    I’ve got pirate TV to allow us to watch BBC and ITV, my wife likes the soaps, I could cancel it but she would not be pleased. I have a large music collection pirated from the internet, I suppose I could throw all that away, but I wouldn’t half be miserable without my music. I can’t even mention my copy of Windows in case Mr Gates is watching.

    I pay black money wherever I go, like everyone else, I could stop doing that, I suppose. My toilet would still be blocked, the weeds in the garden would be ten feet high and the swimming pool would turn brown. My car would no longer go. I could go on.

    But I’m a good man and want to do something to help. I’m off out for morning coffee and I’m thinking of not tipping the waitress. Maybe I should grass her up for working black?

  • #114885
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    For the last few months corruption scandals have been all over the Spanish press. There was one a few weeks ago where some of the culprits were even found guilty. Their “punishment”: to pay the backlog in taxes they owed for not declaring their income. Hmmm, I bet they’ll think twice before trying to pull that one again…

  • #114886
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    What i’ve noticed from my time in Spain is that ‘corruption’ is so embedded.

    Examples: The Mayors father used to be the Mayor. Before elections he sends out vans of food and drink to various areas to hand out for free to encourage voting. They seem to think that is better than complaining about 500,000 euros ‘cost’ of a basketball court on the outskirts of town which is just a patch of concrete….?!

    There are lots of women receiving ‘single mother’ benefits when in fact they are living with their partners. They say ‘mi marido’ my husband, but aren’t married. They class themselves as single so therefore seem to be able to claim nearly 500 euros for about 6 months at a time.

    Those working for the town hall, cleaning the streets, weeding etc. in high viz jackets. They all seemed to be female family of the PSOE guy. The Mayor is PP but I guess he keeps them all happy by letting them get the cushy 1000 euro roles. If the ‘housewives’ earn 1000 per month for say 6 months whilst their husbands are working everyone is happy… well apart from those unemployed who find it very annoying to watch 50/60 year old gossiping housewives doing very little work!

    Again, an aunt…’cleaning’ at the school. She was mainly talking to everyone…. at least the uncle had the decency to lower his gaze when he was talking about how much she earnt. He knew that his nephew would have done anything to have been working to pay the mortgage.

    What about all those who have fake employment at family companies. They pay their basic national insurance payments and then are able to get a pension/earn benefits. They probably haven’t done a days work.

    What about the guys who set up two companies, one to gain and one to loose out so they get tax back.

    Agreed with Rocker, everyone is paid in cash. They probably haven’t even heard of cheques (until you try to cash one at the bank and they want a fortune in fees for doing so!) Why do you tip though Rocker, I wouldn’t find a Spanish person doing that?!

    It’s everywhere…. I have argued until i’m blue in the face that it’s not ok to build illegally a little house on rustic land because there is something called Google earth which shows the guys at the Junta that houses keep on appearing! They think that if they call it a ‘casita’ then it’s all ok…. and then it pops up on property websites for sale for 80k.

    If they all see it going on daily then they are all going to think that ‘it’s ok for them then it’s ok for me’.

    The solicitor told my Dad to pay half in cash for his land, declare less and pay less tax. It’s ‘the norm’….great until you want to sell and you get hammered for the difference.

    Therefore, if everyone pays cash for everything….. the big players are going to do the same thing. What is causing a problem is that the country is in crisis and the boom times are over. If they all have cash they wouldn’t mind but now things are tight they are crying about politicians being corrupt. They always have been, as have bankers. All those Cajas had directors handing out mortgages and loans like confetti, each one earning them commision…..

    What is going to be done about it all? Everyone can’t cry ‘foul’ as everyone has done it to a degree!

  • #114889
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    It’s simple. Rocker has highlighted how we all can just say no and start to make a better society. To the credit of the French that process has begun to a certain extent. Oak trees grow from small acorns.

    I’m not preaching here it’s common sense. People follow examples and if we refused to pay cash and ask for a bill it’s a beginning. I don’t suggest reporting your neighbours but if they realise working ‘black’ is socially unacceptable they will conform.

    If politicians know they risk being denounced for taking back handers they may think again. To change a societies culture is very difficult. There has to be some overt incentive. However if the leaders of that society do not set a good example what chance is there?

    When I was in business in Spain many years ago I denounced a local Mayor for corruption and stood against him in a local election. It was a brutal fight but he lost. I didn’t win either but I made a point. However I suffered for it. 🙁 That’s doing something. We all have the power to change the world. Just do it, the suffering is worthy.

  • #114890
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    But if everyone is suffering financially, or even perceive themselves to be when in fact they are still very wealthy compared to many others, they would have to be very strong willed to do it over in Spain.

    ‘Hey Mr Plumber, how much is it? It’s 200 euros. Ok, can you let me have a bill showing the IVA and i’ll give you a cheque’.

    ha ha ha, he’ll probably come out with a few expletives and demand that you go with him to a cashpoint!

    So yes, I agree with you that everyone SHOULD do it, but over there it’s so unheard of that it’s going to be very difficult. It’s chicken and egg, if the economy was better first then maybe it could be enforced better if people weren’t suffering so much just to get food for their children. Try telling someone who’s picked oranges all day that they have to pay tax… or those who steal scrap metal for cash. There are cases where they just aren’t going to play by the rules when the rules up until now, even now, are still so bendy!

    Maybe the leaders need to be punished so that the rest of the population can slowly learn from the mistakes?

  • #114891
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    Corruption starts with the government and then filters into the public in general. To reduce corruption all you need is a simple taxation system that is easy to enforce, and transparent public accounts, so people see where their money goes. I’m afraid you will not change anything by getting the public to behave in a less corrupt way – they will only end up being abused even more.

  • #114893
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Well, I did tip the waitress, she’s Portuguese anyway and from the back looks like that Kardashian woman always in the Mail.

    About corruption at the top, or what other countries think of it.

    Italy is about to vote for their next leader, and may well re-elect their previous one, Berlusconi. The fact that he is technically serving four years in prison for corruption does not seem to matter to the electorate.

    Us Brits may well shake our heads in disbelief, but Italy and Spain are big and important countries, not to be dismissed as some backward States from medieval times.

    Maybe we’re the backward ones with our fancy beliefs in justice, while at the same time paying our taxes as the serfs before us have always done.

  • #114894
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    It’s simple. Rocker has highlighted how we all can just say no and start to make a better society. To the credit of the French that process has begun to a certain extent. Oak trees grow from small acorns.

    I’m not preaching here it’s common sense. People follow examples and if we refused to pay cash and ask for a bill it’s a beginning. I don’t suggest reporting your neighbours but if they realise working ‘black’ is socially unacceptable they will conform.

    If politicians know they risk being denounced for taking back handers they may think again. To change a societies culture is very difficult. There has to be some overt incentive. However if the leaders of that society do not set a good example what chance is there?

    When I was in business in Spain many years ago I denounced a local Mayor for corruption and stood against him in a local election. It was a brutal fight but he lost. I didn’t win either but I made a point. However I suffered for it. 🙁 That’s doing something. We all have the power to change the world. Just do it, the suffering is worthy.

    How about you and i meeting outside the Hacienda office in Alicante and giving ourselves up? We might as well, I can’t think of a way round this declaring foreign assets nonsense.

  • #114895
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Except for small odd jobs I always insisted on a factura with IVA. If things go wrong there is no way of complaining without an official factura and you cannot deduct work done against capital gains if you sell. When our cars were serviced we were always asked “with or without IVA” 🙄

    When we first returned to the UK. an Electrican did some work. The bill came to £87 and when I offered him cash as I would have done in Spain he said he wanted a cheque as his accountant would not like it 🙂

  • #114896
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    @Rocker wrote:

    Spain has the additional burden of being a young democracy, still finding its way in a strange world. A world of brown envelopes, as the latest scandal shows.

    There’s not much an expat can do, but my wife is about to make her small contribution. She’s going to shop at Iceland this morning.

    Did she buy you any Mars Bars 😉 😆

  • #114897
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    Well, I did tip the waitress, she’s Portuguese anyway and from the back looks like that Kardashian woman always in the Mail.

    About corruption at the top, or what other countries think of it.

    Italy is about to vote for their next leader, and may well re-elect their previous one, Berlusconi. The fact that he is technically serving four years in prison for corruption does not seem to matter to the electorate.

    Us Brits may well shake our heads in disbelief, but Italy and Spain are big and important countries, not to be dismissed as some backward States from medieval times.

    Maybe we’re the backward ones with our fancy beliefs in justice, while at the same time paying our taxes as the serfs before us have always done.

    Have to disagree with you on this one. Quite apart from the big players like Amazon and Starbucks, have we forgotten already the likes of Lord Ashcroft http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Ashcroft,_Baron_Ashcroft
    He must be killing himself laughing at the bribe allegations in Spain, particularly that Rajoy, a party leader was happy to receive the (relatively) miniscule 25,000 euros a year.

    In 2004 he clashed with Conservative leader Michael Howard when he offered a £2m donation on the condition that it should go to his specified candidates rather than into general Conservative Central Office funds. Ashcroft stated in 2005: “I much prefer to be involved, to make sure that my investment is wisely placed.”
    In December 2005, he was appointed Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party.[29]
    During the “Cash for Peerages” controversy, on 31 March 2006 Ashcroft was named by the Conservative Party as having loaned it £3.6m.
    On 12 October 2007 he was accused by Labour MPs of being allowed to fund heavily local Conservative organisations in marginal seats of his choosing. Lord Ashcroft has insisted such funding is legitimate.

    Of course the black market exists and thrives in the UK, particularly in London. But if they try it on long enough eventually Hector catches up with them.
    The biggest scam is actually the BTL element who rent out to housing benefit claimants. Every tax payer in the UK is subsidising that landlord crowd to the sum of billions every year.

  • #114898
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    @Rocker wrote:
    Spain has the additional burden of being a young democracy, still finding its way in a strange world. A world of brown envelopes, as the latest scandal shows.

    There’s not much an expat can do, but my wife is about to make her small contribution. She’s going to shop at Iceland this morning.

    Did she buy you any Mars Bars 😉 😆

    What do you think? Mars bars with ice cream, steak and kidney pies, horse burgers, oven chips, you name it.

  • #114899
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    How about you and i meeting outside the Hacienda office in Alicante and giving ourselves up? We might as well, I can’t think of a way round this declaring foreign assets nonsense.

    That’s easy just declare your world wide assets to the Hacienda and pay the tax. There is a difference between legal avoidance and breaking the laws of the country. Bribes and tax evasion are not considered crimes in Spain by most people. They are.

  • #114900
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    The biggest scam is actually the BTL element who rent out to housing benefit claimants. Every tax payer in the UK is subsidising that landlord crowd to the sum of billions every year.

    I agree to a certain extent, rents would be lower without HB. However, it isn’t fraud or a scam..it’s legal and Landlords pay tax on the rents they receive, many at 40%

  • #114901
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    @Rocker wrote:
    How about you and i meeting outside the Hacienda office in Alicante and giving ourselves up? We might as well, I can’t think of a way round this declaring foreign assets nonsense.

    That’s easy just declare your world wide assets to the Hacienda and pay the tax. There is a difference between legal avoidance and breaking the laws of the country. Bribes and tax evasion are not considered crimes in Spain by most people. They are.

    It’s not as simple as that. Many years ago I decided to turn Spanish, it made my life so much easier and more enjoyable, I even got to like Chorizo sausages.

    I’m not going to turn my back on my Spanish life, so I leave my tax affairs to my tax accountant, a highly qualified and respectable Caballero. He has advised me on the new ‘foreign assets’ law, and I’m going to take his advice. It’s what I pay him for.

  • #114903
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    I’m posting this link purely because of the topic we are discussing. The contents neither surprise me, nor disgust me. The content doesn’t even bother me much, the clown Barcenas on another occasion stated that if he went to prison he would release an ‘atom bomb’.

    Atom bomb? A damp squib would be more appropriate.

    http://elpais.com/elpais/2013/02/01/inenglish/1359735052_413271.html

  • #114904
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    @logan wrote:
    @Rocker wrote:
    How about you and i meeting outside the Hacienda office in Alicante and giving ourselves up? We might as well, I can’t think of a way round this declaring foreign assets nonsense.

    That’s easy just declare your world wide assets to the Hacienda and pay the tax. There is a difference between legal avoidance and breaking the laws of the country. Bribes and tax evasion are not considered crimes in Spain by most people. They are.

    It’s not as simple as that. Many years ago I decided to turn Spanish, it made my life so much easier and more enjoyable, I even got to like Chorizo sausages.

    I’m not going to turn my back on my Spanish life, so I leave my tax affairs to my tax accountant, a highly qualified and respectable Caballero. He has advised me on the new ‘foreign assets’ law, and I’m going to take his advice. It’s what I pay him for.

    there is doing it legally and avoiding tax and as has been highlighted in the uk it is morally wrong so now we know rocker has no morals as long as he is ok and happy lets move on to all the bigger fish that do the same but hay lets just let them get away with it because its the way the spanish do it.OR we could say you signed up to be in the eu play by the rules layed down by brussels that cost the uk a fortune even thou we are not in to the same extent or get out

  • #114905
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    It’s a hard life at times. I woke up this morning to a howling wind outside and newspapers full of bad news. The rapidly sinking pound made me think of returning to the UK, once again.

    It now appears I would have to learn Polish to live in large parts of the UK. Funnily enough, I don’t mind dabbling in other languages, my Castellano isn’t too bad and I can get by in Valenciano, I liken it to French without speaking through your nose.

    And someone posting in the middle of the night accuses me of having no morals, tax-wise, I think. I hope, anyway. Well, maybe I will give myself up to Hacienda, I might find myself queuing up with Rajoy if he gets a touch of conscience too.

    It’s either that or buying myself more brown envelopes, I’ve run out and two Spanish tradesmen are coming to visit me next week – and it might be three if my toldo gets ripped by the gales.

  • #114906
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    The first stages of the denials have begun. Rajoy appeared on TV yesterday doing his best to convince the people of his innocence.

    Well he had no other choice, doing nothing makes him look guilty. Politicians are consummate actors. The donors all deny paying hundreds of thousands over many years. Money must grow on trees in the PP party HQ.in Madrid. 🙂 We can all now look forward to ‘maximum transparency’ from the PP. That’s code for we have covered our backs folks.

    In all the historical corruption cases involving political party funding of recent years, statements of denial are always the first stage. Then as more and more evidence comes to light they claim immunity from prosecution, stay in office and retire quietly by which time the public have moved on become bored and forgotten it all. There is never a smoking gun.

    Meanwhile their minions do the jail terms and usually keep their mouths shut. Luis Barcenas has promised to do the opposite but I doubt he will.

    Of course Rajoy could be entirely innocent and is the victim of a vile political conspiracy to subvert his government. That is usually the principal excuse when all else fails. If is were true it would be a historical first. 🙄 We can only hope the investigation will be rigorous in getting to the truth.

    It would be very strange indeed if all that black cash money floating about in the PP coffers did not find it’s way to the trousers of the party leadership.

    http://elpais.com/elpais/2013/02/01/inenglish/1359735052_413271.html
    http://elpais.com/elpais/2013/02/01/inenglish/1359751057_012420.html

  • #114907
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    I suspect there’s a huge difference between Rajoy’s actions over the years, and other members of his party. As a party leader would he really have risked taking illegal bribes of just 25k? If so then he should be dismissed for stupidity. Remember that David Milliband has earnt a million since failing to win the Labour Party leadership in 2010. The rewards for ex Party Leaders is huge in terms of executive directorships and the like.

  • #114909
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    At the very least Rajoy could be considered a total incompetent by not being aware his party treasurer was copping millions in bungs from friendly developers over many years and having a Swiss bank account with €22 million in it. If you buy that then I guess you still believe in fairies at the bottom of the garden. 🙂

    Most of the rest of us inhabit the real world.

  • #114914
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    You are giving fairies a bad name Logan. =)

  • #114915
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Has this been mentioned before, but an online petition demanding Rajoy’s resignation has already gathered over 740,000 signatures, in double quick time?

    I posted months ago that Rajoy was giving jobs for the boys and they were ‘all in it together’ but not so for the populus, a bit like the UK at present 😡

  • #114917
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    The people of Spain know that their politicians are corrupt, along with bankers, developers, and other people in power, including Royalty. It leads to a filter down process among ordinary people.

    Spanish unemployment is nowhere near the official figures regularly quoted, at least 20% of the population work black.

    But membership of the EU has led to more transparency and a more efficient tax collection, but the process will take more time, many more years in my estimation.

    In the meantime there appears to be a need for those despicable whistleblowers, like Barcenas.

  • #114925
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Where is the info about the PSOE? They were there in the ‘boom’ so they must have been doing it as well. Not all local councils are PP!

    Can someone list how much Zapatero and his buddies cashed?

  • #114928
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    Where is the info about the PSOE? They were there in the ‘boom’ so they must have been doing it as well. Not all local councils are PP!

    Can someone list how much Zapatero and his buddies cashed?

    Maybe they did take money, but so far, it is members of PP that have been caught. Why is it so important to you that “PSOE must have been doing it as well” ? Is it that you support PP? Your post seems concerned with partisan politics and not the actual crimes.

  • #114930
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    I remember a time in public life when if you were caught with your hands in the till resignation was obligatory for everyone tainted by the scandal. Now it’s denial and tough it out. A sign of the times we all live in.

    It hardly sets any example to the public who only do likewise. There is no morality left, only what you can get away with.

    It does not have to be like that. Governments are supposed to work for the people and people can change it if they want to. It’s the ‘want to’ that’s the problem.

  • #114931
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I do actually support the PP but all the Spanish side of the family (apart from one uncle I believe?) support PSOE. They all want to have a job for life and retire with a big payout. I personally don’t believe that companies can continue to give out such large payouts. Ditto that I don’t agree that there are jobs for life anymore.

    What i’m saying is that there is so much PP bashing and calls for Rajoy to resign…. but what about who was in power when all was okey dokey… so corruption doesn’t matter when everyone feels rich??!!

    There must have been so much corruption going on during the boom years of PSOE, and before hand with the PP, but why don’t they highlight the PSOE as well? If the PSOE get back in why would they be able to do any better with the country with the mess it’s in?!

    Check out the ‘petty’ crimes of local governments and town halls, they aren’t all PP. The PSOE Mayor of Albox apparently resigned because he was having an affair with his secretary and paying her 3k per month from the public funds. 5k per month on ‘entertaining’ etc.

    It’s very easy, as in the UK, to blame who’s in the Gov. at the time of cuts. Every politician is corrupt and out for only themselves, it’s a career choice…..!

  • #114932
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    There must have been so much corruption going on during the boom years of PSOE, and before hand with the PP, but why don’t they highlight the PSOE as well?

    You know, there were murders before ‘Jack the ripper’ so why didn’t they go after those murders too? Because, at the time, Jack the ripper was doing the murdering. What is so difficult understand about this?

    And I know many Spaniards, some who old enough to get pensions and NONE of them have ‘big payouts,’ unless in your warped view of the world, having a pension of less than 900 euros monthly is a big payout.

    Maybe you should do some fact checking before you spout more lies from PP.

  • #114934
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    ??

    I know that guys who got ‘early’ retirement from a local factory got over 100k each. Spanish contract law don’t you know…. They were allowed to retire up to five years early with monthly 1500 euros ‘dole’ until their official pension age and they also receive double pay at Christmas as per their original work contract. Of course they are blooming PSOE supporters…. but what about the fact that the factory is actually getting rid of them all to close the place down as it’s so expensive to run. A typical socialist idea. Hound the business man to death to support the unions and workers rights. When the factory moves to Poland or Romania they’ll all be crying about it.

    What about all the youngsters in that town who were looking forward (short sightedly maybe) to getting cushy 2000 per month for life roles with extra pay. They now won’t get any work when the factory closes.

    So tell me what I don’t know…. as I KNOW these guys who got these payments. Lucky them, not so lucky for anyone else who now doesn’t have a heck of a chance of getting a job for 700 euros a month!!

    ps, I know a lot of Brits out in Spain on the minimum state pension…..getting 900 euros per month would be fantastic for them! A major problem is so many are out there living the ‘cheaper’ lifestyle on £500 a month pension. The exchange rate is a daily worry for them! So tell them in their illegal houses about it? They aren’t all early retired ‘from stress’ policemen, nurses or other public sector workers on their nice comfy pensions.

    My grandfather told me about a very socialist lady politician in the 1950’s who would get onto a train in her ‘normal’ clothes, whilst at the next station her chauffer would be waiting with the Rolls and she’d change into her furs. Typical.

    Now people are up in arms about the ‘poor workers’ in Spain, and my husband is one, but I don’t blame the PP just because they are wealthy and we all need someone to blame. The bankers and politicians from ALL parties are to blame.

  • #114935
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    My grandfather told me about a very socialist lady politician in the 1950’s who would get onto a train in her ‘normal’ clothes, whilst at the next station her chauffer would be waiting with the Rolls and she’d change into her furs. Typical.

    You are using real/fake examples of the extremes as being the norm, which is always disingenuous.

  • #114936
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    So does everyone. Anyone PP is a wealthy corrupt and the PSOE are poor working class republicans who help the working class….

    My grandfather was a photo journalist and wasn’t allowed to tell that story at the time 😉

  • #114938
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    PP, PSOE & Junta are all corrupt & just play musical chairs in filling their pockets. Rajoy or who ever is at the helm will have to play the tune as directed by EU.

    My Spanish friends are suffering and atleast EU interference should be beneficial for the Juan & Maria en la calle. Espero.

  • #114939
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Very true Shakeel

  • #114942
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I remember seeing a table comparing corruption figures throughout the world and Spain was only about average on it, something like 14th with the UK listed as 15th. I think Mexico was near to the top.

    In Spain I have experienced both PP and PSOE, albeit only at a local level. I couldn’t put a cigarette paper between them.

    Mind you, the Spanish news channels are really upset by the Rajoy allegations, and the sheer volume of brown envelopes flying around seems pretty horrific.

  • #114943
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant
  • #114945
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    To be able to indulge in corruption, you must be in a position to do something for the people who want to bung you. The great majority of us are not in that position, so we can get really indignant when we hear of it.

    I would never have been able to buy a house in Spain at the time that I did without paying an amount of black money, it would have been impossible. Looking at the transparency list supplied above, I could have bought one in Finland, a much more transparent country than Spain, but I didn’t fancy living in such a cold place.

    To get back to the transparency list, it appears that the hotter the country, the more corrupt it is. People aren’t to blame, the sun is.

  • #114946
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    We bought and sold several times in Spain, did quite well out of the Spanish market. never once did we pay in black money and neither dd we ever accept any. Not sure what circles you move in Rocker but in Marbella black money has been a non-starter for a few years. Sell your house tomorrow for black money…what would you do with it? …and how would you do it anyway. The notaries now want to see a paper trail and check that buyers are paying a reasonable sum for the valuation.

    I sold a car about 5 years ago in Spain. I accepted cash, just 12,000€. I tried to put it into an account in Gibraltar, they were horrified! I tried 3 other banks and they wouldn’t accept it either. I tried to pay it into my spanish bank account and was told that any transaction over 6 thousand a form for the Bank of Spain had to be completed. Perhaps a Russian oligarch can get away with it with a hundred thousand euro bung but I wouldn’t have placed you in that league. 😆 You are living in the past!

    Another thing…it’s not the sun to blame. perhaps you may have noticed that he sun doesn’t always shine, it can be cold, esecially in Northern Spain.

  • #114949
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Katy the checks the notaries does are only silly ones and stops nothing. They just make sure to have their backs “clean” so they can say that they at least checked that the money came from an “OK” place. But you are sort of on the right track. It stops the normal people to try and hide money but the real crooks still get away with it.

  • #114950
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    More problems for Rajoy and PP:

    Socialists demand PM resign after more slush fund details emerge

    With new details surfacing concerning alleged payoffs the Popular Party leadership received from a secret slush fund, Socialist leader Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba on Sunday called for Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s resignation saying that he “isn’t fit to govern the country at such a delicate time.”

    http://elpais.com/elpais/2013/02/03/inenglish/1359918901_728247.html

    The article doesn’t indicate what the newly emerged details are.

    And regarding ‘black money’ – it didn’t happen in my transaction for my home in Barcelona. I’m sure that peoples’ perceptions are somewhat conditioned by regional norms regarding black money. But it is just silly to project what happen in one or a few translations in a new development in a sparsely populated area to all of Spain.

    Just because it wasn’t necessary for me to purchase my home doesn’t mean that it doesn’t happen. And just because it happens doesn’t mean that it happens all the time, everywhere.

  • #114951
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    I think property buyers in Spain in the last decade who bought from construction and developers involved in corrupting the political system and subsequently lost their investment are entitled to ask if the PP are going to compensate them.

    It is now clear property and construction companies were given carte blanche to behave in any way they wished. Both by POSE and PP. I have little doubt this was because of corrupt payments stretching back years. Companies just don’t hand over money without seeing a significant return and unfettered business operations by lack of regulation. The greater the return the higher the bung.

    Many of these companies now have significant creditors. Again the creditors are entitled to ask PP for compensation. I can see the legal cases lasting a generation.

    Reading the reports the sheer scale of the corrupt payments is truly staggering even in a country well known for being dodgy.

    I have little doubt now that revelations will keep coming and Rajoy would be unlikely to survive in a normally accountable society. However this is Spain and like most Latin countries it’s simply just ‘par for the course’.

  • #114952
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Well, I’m going to blame the sun, not the newspaper, for this too:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/9845938/Twin-crises-in-Italy-and-Spain-stalk-markets-as-political-unrest-prevails.html

    Two of the biggest countries in Europe, Spain and Italy, mired by corruption, cronyism and anything else you can think of, everything totally alien to the Anglo-Saxon mind.

    Yet the voters of both countries voted for their obviously corrupt masters time and again, Rajoy won by a landslide and the evidence of corruption was already known to the public.

    The Telegraph’s columnist, AEP, is trying to turn the issue into a matter of vast importance within the EU itself, and he might be right to do so, but is it that important?

    The cold north already knows all about its hot southern neighbours, they accept what they are, and if they can make a few bob from them by lending them more money than they can afford to pay back, who cares?

    Democracy, ain’t it.

  • #114953
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @angie wrote:

    Has this been mentioned before, but an online petition demanding Rajoy’s resignation has already gathered over 740,000 signatures, in double quick time?

    I posted months ago that Rajoy was giving jobs for the boys and they were ‘all in it together’ but not so for the populus, a bit like the UK at present 😡

    The power of Facebook/Google – the petition got passed around to pretty much everyone in Spain within a couple of days. Well, I received (and signed) it via Facebook within two days of it being set up and I’m not a particularly avid user. It really ain’t too difficult to do though – I’m sure if they did a similar petition about any Spanish politician the day after some corruption piece hit the press you’d also get a huge number signing up. It just takes a click to do.

  • #114954
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    There must have been so much corruption going on during the boom years of PSOE, and before hand with the PP, but why don’t they highlight the PSOE as well?

    You know, there were murders before ‘Jack the ripper’ so why didn’t they go after those murders too? Because, at the time, Jack the ripper was doing the murdering. What is so difficult understand about this?

    And I know many Spaniards, some who old enough to get pensions and NONE of them have ‘big payouts,’ unless in your warped view of the world, having a pension of less than 900 euros monthly is a big payout.

    Maybe you should do some fact checking before you spout more lies from PP.

    A few facts for you…

    Prior to Zapatero, the previous PSOE government (under Gonzalez) fell apart under a whole host of corruption scandals.

    Also Spanish employment law forces employers to pay 44 days pay redundancy for each year worked (well last year they reduced it to 33). So anybody made redundant after say 30 years on a modest €1500/month would expect to receive about €100k redundency. They would also expect a finiquito on top of that.

  • #114955
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Democracy via facebook? I don’t see too much wrong with it. I read this morning that 800,000 had signed the petition. Considering the number of people who don’t yet have an account, it must be a large chunk of the population.

    So we’re going to have Zapatero back? Funnily enough I didn’t mind him, at least he shaved.

  • #114956
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    The idea that Rajoy or the PP would take any notice of public opinion via Facebook or even Twotter (sic) is laughable. These people don’t claw their way to power just to give it up when of a few million people click a mouse.

    They (PP) Rajoy are going nowhere. 🙁

    I watched an informed opinion today on World TV that the reason there has been so little civil unrest in Spain so far is because welfare payments have yet to run out and family units have remain sustainable. That will take another year or so to run out and weaken. The consensus is that if unemployment has not improved by then revolt and civil unrest will become manifest.

    Spanish history shows that can snowball into civil war very easily. The have’s and have-not’s are as clearly defined now in Spanish society as they were in 1936. There is a great deal of anger building up.

  • #114957
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    Democracy via facebook? I don’t see too much wrong with it. I read this morning that 800,000 had signed the petition. Considering the number of people who don’t yet have an account, it must be a large chunk of the population.

    So we’re going to have Zapatero back? Funnily enough I didn’t mind him, at least he shaved.

    I think Rubacalba might have something to say about that!

    However the fact that it is automatically assumed that if one party leaves then the other comes back in demonstrates that the underlying problem is at the institutional level. And neither main party in Spain will change that.

  • #114958
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Spain needs a Liberal party, as we have in the UK, led by someone like Clegg with his Spanish wife. But, didn’t I read that the Spanish company she’s a director of is deeply involved in the corruption scandal?

    You can’t win with Spanish politics, it’s not just the rich versus the poor, you’ve also got the nationalists still fighting the civil war, and Real Madrid and Barcelona will always be at war, no matter how many super fast AVE trains join them up.

    Instead of building ghost airports and empty Autovias, they would have been better off building some high walls between the various, warring regions. If the money stretched to building a moat around Marbella, it would have made the rest of the populace happy.

    @Mg: I haven’t mention the sun once, just for you.

  • #114959
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Politicians denials, dam denials and lies. I know this case is unconnected but it is an example of how they all try to play the media, brazenly front out allegations with indignation and shock any one could suggest they were anything but whiter than white. The hypocrisy is breath taking.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/feb/04/chris-huhne-facing-jail-justice

    How long will it be before we see a succession of PP ministers and past leaders admitting their guilt? The answer is only when the evidence cannot be denied any longer, they face a choice of either perjury to defend themselves or take a plea of guilty in the hope of a lighter sentence. 👿

  • #114960
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    …The answer is only when the evidence cannot be denied any longer, they face a choice of either perjury to defend themselves or take a plea of guilty in the hope of a lighter sentence. 👿

    You mean a good ticking off rather than a slap on the wrist?

    It doesn’t matter if they plea guilty or are found guilty. No one will end up in prison.

  • #114962
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    Politicians denials, dam denials and lies. I know this case is unconnected but it is an example of how they all try to play the media, brazenly front out allegations with indignation and shock any one could suggest they were anything but whiter than white. The hypocrisy is breath taking.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/feb/04/chris-huhne-facing-jail-justice

    How long will it be before we see a succession of PP ministers and past leaders admitting their guilt? The answer is only when the evidence cannot be denied any longer, they face a choice of either perjury to defend themselves or take a plea of guilty in the hope of a lighter sentence. 👿

    The list is endless, now Huhne before that the ‘Sword of Damocles’ Tory minister who got four years, then Archer – ditto, etc etc.

    Our villains are unlucky, if they get four years, they go to jail, in Italy and Spain, they don’t. They even get re-elected.

  • #114965
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant
  • #114966
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I was going to add the football match fixing news to this discussion, but what would be the point? I think we have firmly established that corruption is rampant, and not only in Spain and Italy, but all over.

    Perhaps it makes the Spanish people’s acceptance of their corrupt politicians more understandable, and their working black and tax avoidance efforts more understandable too – if those at the top do it, why shouldn’t those at the bottom?

    And if some totally, super honest person wants to pay more than he has to, let him save the country money by sending his donation direct to the heads of the PP, or POSE into whose pocket it would go anyway.

  • #114967
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @mgspain wrote:

    Somebody wanted Huhne out of the way. I have a theory that he was going to scupper British business interests with his environment policies. (I have no proof of this)

    As far as Sapin is concerned, if the people let this pass and don’t demad a full transparent independent enquiry or just straight forward kick them out (a la Thatcher and her Poll tax foible) they they will have exactly the government they deserve.

    How would the people go about doing this? They can demand all they like but even if Rajoy does go then he will be replaced by someone from either the PP or the PSOE, same old, same old. The Spanish people have never had the government they deserve because they have never had a choice.

  • #114969
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Huhne is a despicable man, glad he has gone, but hardly in the same league the PP crooks…why bring it into the discussion. 🙄

  • #114970
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    Huhne is a despicable man, glad he has gone, but hardly in the same league the PP crooks…why bring it into the discussion. 🙄

    Principally Katy to indicate the process of political denial, playing for time and the actual worth of the people involved. Rajoy is the leader of the PP as such he should fall on his sword and not wait until he’s pushed or arrested. Huhne knew he was guilty all along and so do the leaders of PP. 👿

  • #114972
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Huhne did lose his Cabinet job immediately the accusation surfaced.

  • #114976
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-21326939

    found this bit on the bbc quite telling:

    However, there was some speculation in Spanish media that Mr Rajoy, in one of his answers at the press conference, appeared to have admitted that some of what El Pais published was correct.

    Asked about the payments, he said: “Everything that refers to me, and that appears there, and to some of my fellow party members that appear there, is not right, except for something that the media has published.”

  • #115080
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Turning up the heat on Rajoy 😛

    http://www.theolivepress.es/spain-news/2013/02 … n-scandal/

    Reminds of a a line from an old song ‘should I (he) stay or should I (he) go?’ 🙄

  • #115084
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Reading the ‘mood music’ of the reports and the weak denials made by Rajoy himself there seems little doubt the allegations have truth. El Pais would not have got out on a very long limb had there been any.

    Aznar is suing the paper over allegations he also received cash from the slush fund. Former leaders of the party have admitted it. My guess is they never for a moment suspected Barcenas would be stupid enough to keep records of the payments. A insurance policy I suppose.

    The real question now is will a vigorous criminal investigation be carried out or will it be quietly covered up as the people become bored with it. I suspect that will happen for the ‘sake of the country’. Shame on Spain if it does.

  • #115088
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    I suspect it will drag on for years like every other corruption case in Spain. When they finish everyone has lost interest and there are a few token prison sentences which are defered.

  • #115182
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Spain’s new tax crackdown makes it’s presence.

    Spain steps up a more direct approach to combat tax cheats with surprise visits to restaurants, beach-side parking lots, shops and other businesses and face to face meetings often demanding sales receipts and if none, cash demands.

    I’d love to be there when they surprise Rajoy with a face to face meeting, extracting a few more euros for the pot 😆 I can dream 🙄

  • #115268
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    More on Rajoy 🙄

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-02-11/spain-kickback-scandal-threatens-rajoy-79-find-corruption-explanations-weak

    Take the 1st comment below the article with a good measure of Carlos 1 😉

  • #115269
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    Rajoy is going to take the initiative on the most urgent issue in Spain: Remove all prohibitions against bullfighting. This is nothing more than to distract attention away from his own corruption problems and is a cheap attempt to further demonize the Catalans, to justify whatever forms of ‘crackdown’ he wishes on them.

    But I don’t think that most Spaniards are going to go along with Rajoy on this.

  • #115270
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    For people that know Spain, like I think I may do, I find it surprising that they still sound surprised at the ongoing revelations. There is nothing unusual in Spanish people, from top to bottom, working ‘black’, and Rajoy is no exception.

    I handed over a brown envelope to Spanish builders this morning after suffering nine days of their noise and disruption to improve my house.

    It’s difficult to explain to people who don’t know Spain how the country operates, it would need a long book to go into detail, but for English people to get upset over the Spanish way of life is futile, if you don’t accept it, it’s best to stay away.

  • #115273
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @mgspain wrote:

    Rocker: Spain is quite easy to understand, the least complex culture out of the countries I’ve lived in.
    The vast majority of the Spaniards are very pissed off about this.

    The vast majority of English people are pissed off with immigration, the vast majority of German people want their Mark back, the vast majority of French people hate the English, just like the Welsh and Jocks.

    It’s the way of the world, it plods along with national hatred until they realise that a daft country like North Korea is trying to blow them all out of the water. So they convene a UN meeting to talk about it, while the surface of the earth is reverberating to the shock of nuclear explosions.

    If the wheel comes off, I’m happy where I am, I would be happy in England too, but it’s too cold for my sensitive skin.

  • #115275
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    @Rocker wrote:

    For people that know Spain, like I think I may do, I find it surprising that they still sound surprised at the ongoing revelations. There is nothing unusual in Spanish people, from top to bottom, working ‘black’, and Rajoy is no exception.

    I handed over a brown envelope to Spanish builders this morning after suffering nine days of their noise and disruption to improve my house.

    It’s difficult to explain to people who don’t know Spain how the country operates, it would need a long book to go into detail, but for English people to get upset over the Spanish way of life is futile, if you don’t accept it, it’s best to stay away.

    I get the impression you think this behaviour is ok 😕 Don’t forget the black money you paid or improvements can’t be set off against CGT. BBC covering Spanish corruption here.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-21367441

  • #115279
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Making undeclared cash payments to tradesman is one of the reasons Spain and Greece is in the financial state it is. It’s immoral, illegal and criminal behaviour. You cannot simple condone it to yourself by saying ‘that’s what people do in Spain’.
    What happened to moral courage and trying to make a difference Rocker? Shame on you. 👿

    If you tried that in France the Gendarmes would feel your collar and most French tradesman I know would give you a stern lecture for even suggesting it.

  • #115280
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @ Katy.

    No, I don’t think that kind of behaviour is OK, nor bullfighting, nor cruelty to hunting dogs, nor the age of consent being 13, do you want me to go on?

    I accept it because I live in their country as a foreigner.

  • #115281
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    ‘When we looked at property via Ocean Estates, one development at back of Elviria looked good, but then we were told we would have to pay 20-25% of price in ‘B’ money to the Developers, we walked away, as it would have been an under-declaration and illegal. Both Katy and Gary said they bought properties but did not pay ‘B’ money, so why Rocker did you say you would never have been able to buy a house in Spain without having to pay an amount of black money? 🙄

    Most of the ‘B’ money deals involved 20-25% of purchase price I believe, defrauding the Tax authorities on the purchase, and defrauding them again as the vendor would not have paid so much tax either.

    You knew it was wrong, well illegal in fact, most people have a conscience 😯

  • #115282
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    Making undeclared cash payments to tradesman is one of the reasons Spain and Greece is in the financial state it is. It’s immoral, illegal and criminal behaviour.

    It’s as common as pizza flyers here in London. And people who’ve lived here decades tell me the black market has always been huge in the capital city. Yet it’s widely regarded as the place that finances the UK. Go figure…

  • #115283
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    I accept it because I live in their country as a foreigner.

    So if you don’t agree with it why not try and change it by example. If everyone did the same how would we be able to make our societies a better place to live. If all you are concerned about is self interest consider it may even make you feel better about yourself.

    Ring up your builder Rocker and ask for a bill. Make a new beginning, take ‘the road to Damascus’. 🙂

  • #115284
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I wonder if there are differences as to what is ‘normal’ in different parts of Spain.

    I’ve been in Andalucia so you can imagine that for me cash in hand, underdeclaring, corrupt Mayors, buildings without licences etc. etc.etc is 100% perfectly day to day normality!

    What about though in say Barcelona, or Madrid? I think that paying a builder or plumber in Andalucia with anything other than cash would get you a bit of a kicking but in cities?

    Try it then Rocker, ask for a bill. I can imagine a scrunched up napkin from a local tapas bar with some numbers scribbled on it being handed over 😉

  • #115287
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    The only people who dream about asking a builder for a VAT bill in Spain are people who have never been, or have tried it and scarpered back home as soon as they found the country wasn’t for them.

    Or gone to live in France, stuck their head in the sand and pretend that French people are more honest than their Spanish neighbours.

    Or they’re people who think that the elected members of parliament in the UK would never cheat on their expenses claims.

    Their book shelves must be full of fairy tales.

  • #115288
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    thank Mg.

    google map link for corruption cases
    https://maps.google.es/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=es&t=p&source=embed&msa=0&msid=208661973302683578218.00049ca0e3e7654bb763a&ll=41.47566,1.801758&spn=13.689666,28.081055&z=5

    Costa del Sol quite clean except for Marbella, and a small case in benalmadena.

  • #115289
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    @Rocker wrote:

    The only people who dream about asking a builder for a VAT bill in Spain are people who have never been, or have tried it and scarpered back home as soon as they found the country wasn’t for them.

    Or gone to live in France, stuck their head in the sand and pretend that French people are more honest than their Spanish neighbours.

    Or they’re people who think that the elected members of parliament in the UK would never cheat on their expenses claims.

    Their book shelves must be full of fairy tales.

    I’ve bust your theories, we lived there almost 15 years and did very well without resorting to black (except for the gardener). Despite being honest we still came out in profit. You are a joke with your veiled comments 😛

    I assume you won’t be filling out the new Tax Form 720 Asset declaration due at the end of March :mrgreen: All assets over 50,000 including those held in other countries and offshore to be listed. Penalties 15,000€ per asset not disclosed.

  • #115290
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    The only people who dream about asking a builder for a VAT bill in Spain are people who have never been, or have tried it and scarpered back home as soon as they found the country wasn’t for them.

    Not rue Rocker some of did try and set an example. I had a successful period in Spain and refused to take part in any black money, corruption or cash payments. It’s perfectly easy to do if you have the will. Just say no and make it clear where you stand. I agree it’s part of Spanish culture, I saw it happening on a daily basis but I found also everyone understood and accepted my personal position.

    I am dismayed when I read about the leading political figures behaving in this way but a country in the end gets the leaders it deserves.

  • #115291
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    The only people who dream about asking a builder for a VAT bill in Spain are people who have never been, or have tried it and scarpered back home as soon as they found the country wasn’t for them.

    So far, nothing black from me. Both architects I interviewed were insistent that everything be legal.

    The only time I would consider ‘black’ is if I see someone in the street, obviously starving or struggling and I have work that can be done by them. I will pay whatever the legal rate is, but obviously they have no capacity to register, pay VAT, etc.

  • #115292
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    @itsme wrote:

    I wonder if there are differences as to what is ‘normal’ in different parts of Spain.

    I’ve been in Andalucia so you can imagine that for me cash in hand, underdeclaring, corrupt Mayors, buildings without licences etc. etc.etc is 100% perfectly day to day normality!

    What about though in say Barcelona, or Madrid? I think that paying a builder or plumber in Andalucia with anything other than cash would get you a bit of a kicking but in cities?

    There are people who claim the black market doesn’t really happen in the north of Spain. I’m a shade dubious about that, but I’ve not lived there for any length of time so can’t dismiss the claim totally.
    Certainly happens in Madrid, but not to the extent it does in London…
    I’ll have to ask my contacts in Pamplona. Wonder if the people who rent out apartments overlooking the bull run in July declare their earnings? ❓

  • #115293
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Marcos you have to separate by the practise of getting a few extra euros because of the hassle to declare on time events like that and building your whole life around it.

  • #115294
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    I can’t believe that someone could post on the forum bragging that they have paid on a property purchase and still pay ‘B’ money and put it in writing too, it’s insidious and corrupt, and this a Spanish Property Insight designed so as to help people avoid: mistakes, traps, scams with property and generally living in Spain, some example that is to newbies 😡

    Rocker wrote on Jan 31st ‘Having said that, I totally agree with you the corruption in Spain is total, from top to bottom, a total disgrace’

    Feb 1st he wrote ‘I pay black money wherever I go, I could stop that I suppose’

    Feb 12th he wrote ‘I handed over a brown envelope to Spanish Builders this morning’

    😡

  • #115296
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    I feel a denuncia coming on 🙂

  • #115297
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Hadn’t thought of that so how does one go about that logan, por favor? 😉

    Especially in the light of his post on Feb 3rd said ‘ to be able to indulge in corruption you must be in a position to do something for the people who want to bung you. The great majority of us are not in that position, so we can get really indignant when we hear of it’ Hypocrisy or what? 😡

    Then said ‘but I’m a good man (NOT)and want to do something to help’ 😆 followed by ‘Maybe I should grass her up (waitress he did not tip) for working black’ as he sinks to really low depths 👿

    Crims. don’t like grassers 🙄

  • #115298
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Today is Ash Wednesday a day when Christians contemplate their transgressions and ask for forgiveness. Perhaps Rajoy and Rocker may think on that.

  • #115300
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @angie. An honest word of advice, my dear. Should you wish, I will give you advice on how to make a denuncia. But what you should know is that Spanish law is very similar to English law, and if you come along with those quotes you have laboriously copied from my previous posts, you will be sectioned.

    And don’t bring Walter Mitty along, he could be in trouble too.

    Have you totally flipped?

  • #115304
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Rocker, your rudeness belies belief sometimes. You recently said that I ‘hated Spanish, Germans and Jews’ which my post did not say. However, I quote you again ‘Apart from the always nasty Germans, the Scottish people are now getting it, along with the lazy Greeks and corrupt Spaniards, we’ll be glad to see the back of the job-stealing Poles’ What are you, a one eyed, one sided person that only sees and says what he wants. Another poster, said of your post ‘it’s you Rocker who are introducing racism into this’

    As for sectioning, you’ve now lost it completely, you admit fraud on a number of counts, you boast of it, you talk about ‘grassing a poor waitress’ up for doing something you do all the time.

    You are a rather nasty individual that needs denouncing, what an example to others thinking of moving to Spain. 👿

  • #115306
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    @katy wrote:

    I assume you won’t be filling out the new Tax Form 720 Asset declaration due at the end of March :mrgreen: All assets over 50,000 including those held in other countries and offshore to be listed. Penalties 15,000€ per asset not disclosed.

    Tell us then Rocker….will you be risking a fine ❓

  • #115307
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    He’s leading the ladies (and Logan) a merry dance… 😆
    Rocker can claim to be a serial killer if he wants – he knows those posters aren’t able to break cover and turn up in court.

  • #115312
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Would I be disclosing my tax affairs to a woman who sees two faces when she looks in a mirror, some Walter Mitty character posing as a property magnate from sheltered accommodation, and another who just can’t help being nasty?

    This crazy ‘axis of evil’ now want to report a fellow member to the police for posting good news about Spain. You couldn’t make it up.

  • #115313
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    some Walter Mitty character posing as a property magnate from sheltered accommodation,

    That would be no doubt Jake. 🙂 You have lost your sense of humour and proportion. You must have expected some response for admitting doing what you did on a thread about Spanish corruption.

  • #115321
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Funny how a man guilty of fraud by his own admission is trying to turn the tables on to someone else. Poor old Rocker, since when have illegal dealings in this case yours, been a green shoots or good news topic ?:roll: 😆

    Think I read somewhere that 25% of dealings in Spain involved ‘B’ money, if so 75% did not, you had a choice, you chose the corrupt route! 😡 Who could trust anything you say, I hope newbies see that? 🙄

    Grow up and ask for a factura from now on 😆

  • #115323
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I normally go on the defense of Angie but in this case I can see Rockers point of view. I’m the same. We can see wrongdoing in Spain but we’ve been warn down with ‘the norms’. You can try to fight it but you get tired…. so you join in. It’s not right, but it’s ok as the song says. Although it’s not for our ‘norms’ in the UK. Maybe with all the politicians getting in trouble it will trickle down slowly to show that corruption isn’t good.

    Too many people have paid through the nose to try to do the right thing in Spain so you probably just end up paying cash to have an easier life…. ?

    It’s going to be a long slow road though….. ?

  • #115324
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Itsme, I think you’ll read that others here don’t defend Rocker on this, and since when has it been good news? 🙄

    Also, if anyone has dealt with ‘B’ money why boast as he does does about it on a forums page, as well as talk about grassing up a poor waitress, talk about double standards. Plain and simply hypocrisy 😡

    His property has an under-declared value, no wonder it will be years before it shows a decent profit, the tax man was cheated by buyer and seller, and his tax bill if and when he sells will be much larger, unless which is likely it seems, be underdeclared again.

    It is illegal, and does not set an example to others 😡

  • #115326
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    But that sums up the problem with Spain doesn’t it, that it just doesn’t make much sense at the moment? (has it ever?)

    Example:

    Andrew and Andrea want to have their villa repainted. They have 600 euros set aside for the job.

    They ask cash in hand Paco for a price, he says 550 euros.

    They ask Legit S.L. and they say that it will cost 800 euros.

    Who would you choose and who should you choose?

    Cash in hand guy is probably on the dole but gets very little money, and the dole runs out and then he’ll have nothing. He may have children etc.

    Legit S.L. owner is probably struggling to keep his business afloat and has to pay national insurance and other taxes. If he goes under he won’t get the dole (I think, isn’t it the case with business owners/self employed that they don’t get the dole?). So if he looses his company he will also be in dire straits and his children will suffer.

    So it’s a black and white case. It’s up to each and every one of us. If times are tough then most people, if given the chance, would go for the cheaper option wouldn’t they? It’s not right but if you go out for number one you go out to protect yourself and pay less don’t you?

    Just add lots of zeros for bigger jobs and you can see how cash in hand is still probably King out there. Large companies being run for years doing it. ?

  • #115328
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Isme – I understand the imperative you describe but really proper enforcement of tax laws is the key to ending this endemic madness. If the population seek a mainstream European democratic nation they need to accept laws have to be obeyed. Not just ‘more honoured in the breach than in the observance’ as we have currently in Spain.

    If people believe there is a high risk of being caught in making illegal payments and a heavy fine imposed they will always take the legal route. That’s how it works in France. Setting aside morality for a moment it’s just a cheaper option.

    I was once given a €30k tax bill by the revenue in France when I sold a renovated property some years ago. I had to attend three interviews with the tax man and produce over fifty bills proving TVA had been paid on materials and labour.

    Eventually the tax bill was waived but had I not had the bills to prove my payments and paid black labour as Rocker does I would have lost €30k. That is called enforcement. In Spain it’s entirely a free for all.

  • #115329
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    @itsme wrote:

    But that sums up the problem with Spain doesn’t it, that it just doesn’t make much sense at the moment? (has it ever?)

    Example:

    Andrew and Andrea want to have their villa repainted. They have 600 euros set aside for the job.

    They ask cash in hand Paco for a price, he says 550 euros.

    They ask Legit S.L. and they say that it will cost 800 euros.

    Who would you choose and who should you choose?

    Cash in hand guy is probably on the dole but gets very little money, and the dole runs out and then he’ll have nothing. He may have children etc.

    Legit S.L. owner is probably struggling to keep his business afloat and has to pay national insurance and other taxes. If he goes under he won’t get the dole (I think, isn’t it the case with business owners/self employed that they don’t get the dole?). So if he looses his company he will also be in dire straits and his children will suffer.

    So it’s a black and white case. It’s up to each and every one of us. If times are tough then most people, if given the chance, would go for the cheaper option wouldn’t they? It’s not right but if you go out for number one you go out to protect yourself and pay less don’t you?

    Just add lots of zeros for bigger jobs and you can see how cash in hand is still probably King out there. Large companies being run for years doing it. ?

    Absolutely. and the same principle applies here in London. If you want tiles put down in the bathroom, and the local legit company charges £900, but the local Bulgarian (who is recommended by friends) quotes £450, who to choose?
    In fact the local building firm has gotten around this, by acting as an “agent” for the “freelancers”. The building firm gets a “finding fee” and the Bulgarian freelancers get the work. The old local building workers have long since specialized or relocated to Essex.

  • #115332
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I’m bound to ask this next question: What right have failed expats who have long ago gone back to the UK to claim benefits, got to question the expats still here who haven’t failed?

    At least one of them must live in Barking, I suspect it’s a higher number.

    Don’t they realise that their failure to live happily in Spain has got nothing to do with Spain, the country? Just by reading a few of their hysterical postings in the ‘Bad news about Spain’ thread proves my point. They should never have come to Spain in the first place, this country was never going to be for them.

    The million of us still here are well rid of those losers.

  • #115333
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Who are the failed ex-pats 😕 You are getting rattled and nasty now. This is a forum and someone can comment from Iraq if they want. You can’t expect everyone to sing the same tune as you…grow up.

    Will you be filling out Tax form 720 then ❓ ❓

    Do I know you, didn’t you get banned from another forum a few months ago?

  • #115335
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Rocker – You have now lost all credibility.

  • #115342
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I’ve never been banned from any forum and as for losing credibility, how can you lose it for telling the truth? Politely, at that.

    I’m one of a million expats living happily in Spain, we all know a few who have returned to the UK because it didn’t work out for them, but I’ve only ever come across three who have returned and then post pure vitriol, over and over again about a country they once lived in.

    Worse than that, they turn nasty, collectively, whenever someone, anyone, posts good news about Spain. It’s weird, uncanny and unreal – and smacks of something totally alien to normal people.

    Another member of this forum posted some good news about Spain and the same three heroes exposed his real identity with great glee, repeatedly.

    Moi? They want to report me to the police for admitting paying black money to a Spanish builder. Perhaps, while they’re at it, they could report 45 million Spanish people for doing the same thing.

    Maybe they tried it while living here? It would explain their absence from the country.

  • #115343
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    I’ve just got in from playing golf on a lovely afternoon in Blighty, golf was a bit mixed but that’s what gets us coming back, the birds were singing, blue sky and good company. 😀

    Then I just logged on and read ‘offhis’ nasty little post spouting some rubbish about failed expats, for a grown man he is so immature. How the ‘largest agent on the Costa Blanca’ can be associated with someone so ballsy about ‘B’ money deals would make me worry about that agent as well, it cannot be a good reference point to promote property, oh my best friend does ‘B’ money day to day.

    Rocker, it’s you posting continual vitriol, BTW absence from the country, told you before we visit several times a year, not South of Alicante though 😀

    As logan says ‘you have now lost ALL credibility’ 🙄 😥 🙁

  • #115344
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @dbmarcos99 wrote:

    @itsme wrote:
    But that sums up the problem with Spain doesn’t it, that it just doesn’t make much sense at the moment? (has it ever?)

    Example:

    Andrew and Andrea want to have their villa repainted. They have 600 euros set aside for the job.

    They ask cash in hand Paco for a price, he says 550 euros.

    They ask Legit S.L. and they say that it will cost 800 euros.

    Who would you choose and who should you choose?

    Cash in hand guy is probably on the dole but gets very little money, and the dole runs out and then he’ll have nothing. He may have children etc.

    Legit S.L. owner is probably struggling to keep his business afloat and has to pay national insurance and other taxes. If he goes under he won’t get the dole (I think, isn’t it the case with business owners/self employed that they don’t get the dole?). So if he looses his company he will also be in dire straits and his children will suffer.

    So it’s a black and white case. It’s up to each and every one of us. If times are tough then most people, if given the chance, would go for the cheaper option wouldn’t they? It’s not right but if you go out for number one you go out to protect yourself and pay less don’t you?

    Just add lots of zeros for bigger jobs and you can see how cash in hand is still probably King out there. Large companies being run for years doing it. ?

    Absolutely. and the same principle applies here in London. If you want tiles put down in the bathroom, and the local legit company charges £900, but the local Bulgarian (who is recommended by friends) quotes £450, who to choose?
    In fact the local building firm has gotten around this, by acting as an “agent” for the “freelancers”. The building firm gets a “finding fee” and the Bulgarian freelancers get the work. The old local building workers have long since specialized or relocated to Essex.

    you’d chose me i charge £450 to tile a standard bathroom and thats walls and floor lol and i would give you a bill and a promise to return to put anything right that may show up at a later date as long as it it down to me.But in reality it goes to the bulgarian because everyone thinks he is cheap.i have been and put a few jobs right by these guys.admittedly some of them are good at what they do but only a few of them the rest are just diyers with a bit of experiance

  • #115352
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    Here in this part of London the vast majority of building services seem to be from foreign parts. It’s true you can find cowboys amongst the good ones. But anyone hiring this type of work needs to do their research, ask about previous jobs/references etc. Plenty of home-grown cowboys around too – at one time the box was full of documentaries exposing them. There are a lot of websites now where you can see reviews – but this is open to manipulation.

  • #115365
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    I wonder if Rocker or anyone else could explain what to do with black money when you receive it. I gave an example of just a small sum when I accepted cash for a car. Another couple I know accepted a large sum in cash when they sold their house in Spain. (Despite being warned by the Lawyer not to do it) They went straight to Gibraltar and the bank wouldn’t accept it. After many phone calls it was arranged that the cash would be returned to the buyer and they would be given a UK cheque instead…the cheque bounced 😯

    When I left Spain there was around 25,000 in a bank account. On the way to the airport I withdrew the money and closed the account. I had to fill in a form for the Bank of Spain including stating what I wanted the money for! There is a report in Sur today of a British man arrested at Málaga with 170,000 he cannot account for. So, if anyone is thinking of accepting black money for a sale and leaving the country…beware!

    http://www.diariosur.es/20130215/local/malaga/intervienen-pasajero-aeropuerto-casi-201302151446.html

  • #115367
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    I wonder if Rocker or anyone else could explain what to do with black money when you receive it.

    While I won’t participate in ‘black money’ transactions, I could find a way of supporting myself by paying for groceries, dining-out, etc. for years.

  • #115371
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Yes so could I if it was spare money but some may want to put that money in another house. I know when i finished up with the money for my car sale in the safe it just seemed to disappear on nothing 😆

  • #115373
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    If you have documentary proof that the cash came from a legitimate source the bank will accept it. I have had the same situation and when I could prove the origins of the money there were no problems allowing it on my account.

    These are very good reasons for insisting on proper invoices and receipts when doing business. In the normal world outside Spain it’s normal practice.

  • #115374
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    Yes so could I if it was spare money but some may want to put that money in another house. I know when i finished up with the money for my car sale in the safe it just seemed to disappear on nothing 😆

    Life can be a big disappointment at times. We have heroes and role models, and then they let us down. I didn’t expect you to have dealt with black money, Katy, and I certainly didn’t expect you to write of it on an open forum, like I foolishly did.

    If Angie carries out her threat to report the dealers in black money to the police, we could wind up in the dock together.

    Try and be a bit more careful, we live in dangerous times.

  • #115375
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    If you have documentary proof that the cash came from a legitimate source the bank will accept it. I have had the same situation and when I could prove the origins of the money there were no problems allowing it on my account.

    These are very good reasons for insisting on proper invoices and receipts when doing business. In the normal world outside Spain it’s normal practice.

    Why don’t you fill in an application form for the Vatican, there’s a vacancy coming up.

  • #115376
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    @Rocker wrote:

    @katy wrote:
    Yes so could I if it was spare money but some may want to put that money in another house. I know when i finished up with the money for my car sale in the safe it just seemed to disappear on nothing 😆

    Life can be a big disappointment at times. We have heroes and role models, and then they let us down. I didn’t expect you to have dealt with black money, Katy, and I certainly didn’t expect you to write of it on an open forum, like I foolishly did.

    If Angie carries out her threat to report the dealers in black money to the police, we could wind up in the dock together.

    Try and be a bit more careful, we live in dangerous times.

    Wasn’t exactly black money. I sold my car privately and accepted cash for it.

  • #115378
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I wasn’t having a go at you, sometimes things get tangled up, life gets tangled up, hypocrites jump out at you, and you need to take stock.

    A sense of humour helps. I had a busy day today, clinicas, farmacias, the search for a mincer because we are fed up eating horse meat, and while we were standing in a Spanish butchers who looked like a swarthy crook, I wondered whether all the chunks of meat were what he said they were.

    I’ve lost my sense of trust, the world appears to be full of grasses.

    But, I tend to be a dreamer, just like my pal on this forum, I bought a tin of beans in Lidl today, and imagined I was Warren Buffet.

  • #115386
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Grow up Rocker try and be a little more mature, you’re the one who openly said you deal with ‘B’ money every day, not katy, not Gary, you’re acting like a wum, and when you said ‘the world appears to be full of grasses’ were you including yourself in that with the poor Spanish waitress? 🙄

  • #115387
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    It’s as well the world has so called ‘grasses’, (a term used by criminals). Otherwise corruption in high places would never be exposed. How would we know the true extent of kickbacks being paid to the PP?

    Whistle blowers are to be applauded in a civilised society not pilloried.

  • #115405
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I must admit I enjoy a discourse with Los Tres Malos, which is how I’ve dubbed them. One thing puzzles me though, none of them live in Spain yet they are incensed to the point of blind fury by Spanish corruption?

    Surely if they want to wage a campaign against corruption in this wicked world of ours, they should pick on Nigeria, or Mexico or an Eastern European country, all of which are much worse than poor old Spain.

    And what about their home country, the UK, ranked only slightly below Spain in the corruption tables?

    If one of the Malos wants to answer my question, I would be obliged, I am genuinely puzzled. I was going to add – it’s a wummer – but I don’t know what it means.

  • #115406
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Rocker you are just a wind up merchant.

  • #115408
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Why would we want to discuss Uganda on here or the UK either. It’s a Spanish property forum 😯

    Via El Pais (today),
    The benefit of a few was to the detriment of the many. The corrupt business ring known as Gürtel obtained over 115 million euros in contracts from public agencies as well as local and regional governments under Popular Party (PP) rule, according to an ongoing investigation.

    That is without counting all the private contracts that the PP awarded the business conglomerate headed by Francisco Correa (“correa” translates as “belt” in English and “Gürtel” in German). The ransacking of taxpayers’ money could be even greater, though, as the investigation has not concluded yet, four years after Correa’s arrest.

    More than 70 people face charges ranging from money laundering to bribing of public officials in a major case of political corruption involving the PP.

    The investigation shows that the hefty profits were shared out among members of the ring and some of the politicians who helped them secure the contracts.

    Millions of euros were also concealed from the tax authorities. Correa has declared himself without income for the last 12 years, and is thought to have cheated the state out of an estimated 18 million euros in income tax alone between 2002 and 2007.

    The regions of Madrid and Valencia were the ring’s main theater of operations. The towns of Majadahonda, Boadilla, Arganda and Pozuelo de Alarcón, outside the capital, were havens of corruption for years, according to the report. In Majadahonda alone, Gürtel businesses were awarded nearly 3.5 million euros’ worth of public contracts between 2001 and 2005.

    The Gürtel network first came to light in 2009, when EL PAÍS obtained information on a judicial investigation being led by the since-suspended Judge Baltasar Garzón. The highest-profile trial related to the probe was that of former Valencia premier Francisco Camps, who was acquitted of taking bribes by a jury.

    Deutsche Bank’s thoughts on the process and outcome:

    Rajoy is fighting the allegations – denying the accusation and threatening judicial action against those making those allegations and making public his own financial records. The whole matter is now no longer a merely journalistic event, but has moved to a judicial investigation – the original documents published by El Pais have been transmitted to the Madrid tribunal. The proceedings could take several months, maybe more. ABC newspaper on 8 February reported the following statement by Spain’s attorney general, Eduardo Torres-Dulce: “Justice needs to go fast, but not impossibly fast”. In the meantime, PP is conducting an internal investigation.

    The likeliest course of action at this stage, in our view, is that on the basis of the internal investigation, Rajoy may go as far as letting go some members of his cabinet, but we think that he will protect the “hard nucleus” of his administration and will not resign.

    Still, in any case, we think that the room for maneuver of the Spanish government has significantly diminished. In particular, the capacity for Rajoy to “sell” additional austerity measures or transitorily painful structural reforms is now lower.

  • #115414
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    Still, in any case, we think that the room for maneuver of the Spanish government has significantly diminished. In particular, the capacity for Rajoy to “sell” additional austerity measures or transitory painful structural reforms is now lower.

    That is an interesting observation. When Spain applies for an EU bailout which will come with further austerity conditions, I would not be surprised if that moment was the tipping point and Rajoy may go.

    The scale of this corruption is truly staggering. Yet it does not surprise the Spanish. They almost accept it being par for the course in Spain which is incredibly sad.

  • #115420
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    We both appear to like Zero Hedge, mg 🙂

    They say that in 2012 there were (only 😆 ) 800 public offices in Spain and politicians accused in corruption cases and 100 on the list for the election, gosh 🙄 Do they mean ‘B’ money? ❓

    Funny old map of called Spanish corruptometer!

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-02-13/map-d … ruptometer

  • #115421
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    The interesting factor in the El Pais article is it has little criticism of the detective agency for keeping these files on public figures. More what they contain against them.
    J Edgar Hoover the erstwhile head of the FBI in the US did something similar and used them to backmail politicians and Judge’s to an effective extent.

  • #115422
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    The interesting factor in the El Pais article is it has little criticism of the detective agency for keeping these files on public figures. More what they contain against them.

    Not only that, but the photo they used of Alicia Sánchez-Camacho is telling. She looks like entitled gentry.

    Regarding Spain’s corruption in the political realm, I don’t think it is worse than Italy, France, Germany, the UK or the US. But the levels of stupidity and greed are probably greater.

    If any of those other countries had unemployment of 25% or greater and the government was making idiotic cuts, I’m sure that we’d see articles about corruption. Because in the end, there’s no honor (or loyalty) among thieves.

    I’m looking forward to the next PP announcement of cuts in services. In light of the filthy stinking money-driven greed of the PP heirarchy, I think we’ll see just how docile the Spanirds are not.

    Regarding Zerohedge, how can you all read that an not need a shower? Some of the articles are OK but the majority of those who comment are vile.

  • #115423
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    Posters here seem to be talking of a “bailout” as being inevitable, yet it’s currently becoming less and less likely. Indeed the Spanish banks have just repaid early 44 billion of their financial bailout of last year.
    Of course there may be an unforeseen event that makes things difficult for Spain to borrow on the markets (currently they are placing debt issues with ease). But does anyone seriously believe that Germany, in an election year, will sanction a major injection of funds? I don’t see that happening – at that point it’s more likely that one of the two countries leaves the Euro. Even that scenario is looking less likely than last summer.

  • #115429
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Detective agencies in Spain are large businesses and are often used by politicians who pay them large fees from public funds. There’s one in Alicante, very similar to the one in Barcelona.

    A couple of years ago the ruling council in San Fulgencio used them to spy on an opposition member of the council who was corrupt. With all the electronic equipment now available, the agency easily confirmed the council’s suspicion, they had their target on tape and photographed accepting bribes from a developer.

    The denuncia was made and the crook appeared before a magistrate. But he filed a counter denuncia concerning breach of his privacy and that also went before a magistrate.

    The upshot was hilarious. With the entire council before the courts, only one independent councillor was left in charge of the town’s affairs. He was an independent British expat, voted in by his fellow expats for a bit of a joke, and couldn’t speak a word of Spanish.

    He was in charge of the police, rubbish collectors, paying civil servants, issuing building licences etc etc. and he liked a drink too.

    His reign lasted quite a while until regional government had to step in.

  • #115545
    Profile photo of zenkarma
    zenkarma
    Participant

    Really interesting thread which I’ve enjoyed reading, particularly for the chuckle factor.

    Some very strange naive views expressed somewhat hysterically at poor old Rocker, who’s taken them all with self effacing charm and dignity. Good for you Sir, I commend you for your patience.

    Rant switch to on…

    If the Spanish government were to behave in any way fairly towards non Resident owners of property in Spain I (and I’m sure many others) would be perfectly happy to pay their silly and ever increasing taxes with an open and clear conscience of doing what was right. Given that the same utterly corrupt, cheating government thinks it’s fair to fleece me of €500 every year on property taxes because I happen to be a non-resident on some kind of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ fairyland reason of ‘if I were to rent my flat out this is what taxes I’d pay on it’ reason, I don’t, won’t and wouldn’t bat an eyelid on cheating them out of any or all taxes I could on paying contractors in cash. Everyone else does it, why shouldn’t I?

    If they were in any way fair to me, I’d be fair back to them, given they’re not fair to me, they can go spin for their taxes. So can the bank who fleece me another €100-150 a year just for having a stinking bank account that the utility companies demand I have so their bills can be paid via direct debit.

    So that’s €650 a year I’m paying in unnecessary taxes and bank charges before I even set foot in my flat, a flat I might add that was purchased with hard earnt and tax paid money from the UK.

    You people make me laugh with your holier than tho attitudes towards an utterly corrupt and contemptuous Spanish government and tax regime. If the politicians and government that got themselves and the country into this shitty mess were somehow more honest and less corrupt than they are and actually set an example for the rest of the population to follow, just maybe, honest people would consider being honest and declaring all their taxable income.

    It’s truly laughable how they’ve got themselves into this shitty mess yet expect honest, hard working people to pay higher taxes to get them out of it? Even the ones that don’t even live there!!!!!!!!!

    Rant switch to off.

    PS to Katy and paying cash into the bank from her car sale. You put it in, in small irregular amounts over a period of time that don’t involve any paperwork. There, that wasn’t too hard was it 🙄

  • #115546
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I am totally in your Camp !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • #115550
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    It’s truly laughable how they’ve got themselves into this shitty mess

    You really believe that it was the Spanish government that got themselves into this mess, that they are 100% to blame? That no foreigners have any blame at all and the global economic meltdown, that enriched a few at the expense of the many, had no effect at all upon Spain?

    And you seem to consider the bank fees as some sort of “government tax” as well.

    But if you are really upset about an extra €50 a month you think that you are ‘unfairly’ paying, I suggest that maybe you 1) really can’t afford to live anywhere outside of your home country and/or 2) you are so high-strung that the stress is going to cause health issues, which, presumably, will be addressed by the Spanish health care system that you didn’t pay anything at all to build.

    I’m truly sorry that Spain didn’t work out for you as a ‘cheap’ place to live. Maybe one of the former colonies would be more suitable for you and your self-perception of ‘standing.’

  • #115551
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Zenkarma.
    You expect protection from the laws of a country, free medical care when you need it, security from foreign aggressors, et al.

    How then can it be right to ignore the laws of this country you don’t like or which cost you a little money? It’s hypocritical and eventually destructive to the fabric of the nation and just plain wrong by any standard.

    The consequences of that destructiveness can be seen everywhere in Spain today. Tax avoidance and corruption is a particular symptom.

    In a democracy if you don’t like particular laws political activism is the way to change them, not ignoring them when it suits.

  • #115552
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I have to agree with zenkarma that expats in Spain, or those with holiday homes here find it hard to deal with Spanish authority, tax and otherwise, while witnessing their astonishing corruption and inefficiency.

    There is no doubt they unfairly target foreigners, they’re easy targets.

    But I hesitate going much further, and my hesitation was brought on by reading the headlines in the best selling British newspaper this very morning.

    The British tax authorities are targeting plumbers and hairdressers, instead of pursuing the off-shore tax cheats. Much like Spain then.

    But I’m in Spain and fancy highlighting the following:

    A large expat urbanisation, full of Brits, who mostly bought holiday homes off-plan, all of which are illegal, are now receiving tax bills and fines – but in this case the authorities are going one step further. They can’t or won’t demolish the homes, but they are seizing the houses and selling them at auction to recover their taxes and fines.

    I think the urbanisation is called Vall De Sol in Murcia or Almeria.

  • #115553
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Jus one point there is no “free” health service in Spain.

  • #115554
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    To gain perspective, one only need compare the problem of feeling victimized because of an extra €50 a month with that of, say, those of the 40-year-old man who committed suicide 3 blocks from my front door because he was being evicted by the bank. This isn’t some abstract problem. This is reality.

  • #115556
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    http://www.roundtownnews.com/rtn-newsflash/itemlist/tag/Valle%20del%20Sol.html

    Who is to blame for this debacle. Corrupt politicians and developers. 👿

    Quote:
    In response to this, the Councillor said that they had to follow the law in this matter and the mechanisms of the law state that fines and embargoes must be imposed if a property has been built illegally.
    He did concede however that the residents had been ‘conned’ by the promoters but as the paperwork is all under the names of the homeowners, the Town Hall had no choice but to impose the fines on them.

    Of course I doubt they that favour making illegal cash payments to artisans and the like see any connection with corrupt developers and politicians.

    In reality it is all part of the same thing in the end.

  • #115557
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:


    A large expat urbanisation, full of Brits, who mostly bought holiday homes off-plan, all of which are illegal, are now receiving tax bills and fines – but in this case the authorities are going one step further. They can’t or won’t demolish the homes, but they are seizing the houses and selling them at auction to recover their taxes and fines.

    I think the urbanisation is called Vall De Sol in Murcia or Almeria.

    Are you really saying that the council is repossessing and then selling again illegal homes? 😯

  • #115560
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    That’s how I read it, Chopera, ridiculous as it sounds. I don’t recall where I read it, but the article even had a photograph of the woman who was organising expat opposition to the action by the council. I might have the name of the urbanisation wrong, but remember it was to the south of the Alicante province.

  • #115561
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    It might have been one i heard about in San Juan? The first constructor went bankrupt so CajaMar bank sold the whole urbanisation of unfinished houses to a friend for 1 million euros who then sold it a month later to another constructor for 2 million. I believe it was about 50 houses in total.

    Those houses had deposits and stage payments paid by their supposed owners so I don’t know how the bank could have ‘sold’ the whole urbanisation anyway?

    This was last year I believe?

    Again I ask if anyone knows, why can’t people sue the notary for these type of problems?? They are supposed to uphold the law aren’t they (to a point?)

  • #115566
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Please read my link. http://www.roundtownnews.com/rtn-newsflash/itemlist/tag/Valle%20del%20Sol.html
    In fact Murcia Town Hall have the legal power to eventually evict the owners for none payment of fines then legalise the urbanisation, then sell the properties on to more foreigners. 🙁

  • #115567
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @logan wrote:

    Please read my link. http://www.roundtownnews.com/rtn-newsflash/itemlist/tag/Valle%20del%20Sol.html
    In fact Murcia Town Hall have the legal power to eventually evict the owners for none payment of fines then legalise the urbanisation, then sell the properties on to more foreigners. 🙁

    Are there any foreigners out there who’ll fall for this scam gain? Ah yes, the Russians and Chinese might not be aware of it, and with residency thrown in they might fall for it.

  • #115568
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Thats the worst I have ever heard to be honest. I hope people takes this to court.

  • #115569
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    But who would know unless they see that link and read about it?

    It would appear to any buyer that the agent was selling legit property, just like any other?

    I guess parking a van at the entrance to the urbanisation with a big poster saying ‘don’t buy these properties they are ours’ or suchlike might help during viewing trips?

  • #115572
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    Please read my link. http://www.roundtownnews.com/rtn-newsfl … 20Sol.html
    In fact Murcia Town Hall have the legal power to eventually evict the owners for none payment of fines then legalise the urbanisation, then sell the properties on to more foreigners.

    Here’s a link to the earlier article:

    http://www.roundtownnews.com/rtn-news/costa-blanca-south/item/38242-homeowners-to-take-case-to-europe.html

  • #115579
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    Detective agencies in Spain are large businesses and are often used by politicians who pay them large fees from public funds. There’s one in Alicante, very similar to the one in Barcelona.

    A couple of years ago the ruling council in San Fulgencio used them to spy on an opposition member of the council who was corrupt. With all the electronic equipment now available, the agency easily confirmed the council’s suspicion, they had their target on tape and photographed accepting bribes from a developer.

    The denuncia was made and the crook appeared before a magistrate. But he filed a counter denuncia concerning breach of his privacy and that also went before a magistrate.

    The upshot was hilarious. With the entire council before the courts, only one independent councillor was left in charge of the town’s affairs. He was an independent British expat, voted in by his fellow expats for a bit of a joke, and couldn’t speak a word of Spanish.

    He was in charge of the police, rubbish collectors, paying civil servants, issuing building licences etc etc. and he liked a drink too.

    His reign lasted quite a while until regional government had to step in.

    Seeing as you mentioned detective agencies, here’s a very topical and pertinent article. I’m considering hiring private detectives myself 😉

    http://elpais.com/elpais/2013/02/21/inenglish/1361473117_971239.html

  • #115582
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    Foreigners many of them elderly make easier targets than developers who have good lawyers and can afford to defend action from the town hall. In any case the town hall will be stuffed with the developers friends.

    This is the everyday reality for many people who invest in Spain seeking a quiet life in the sun.

  • #115583
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    My thanks to Logan and Gary for providing the links, I’m hopeless at googling and failed to find them. I do read the Round Town News and guess that’s where I read it.

    I have a more detailed knowledge of a similar situation in Catral in the Alicante province. 1,300 illegal houses were built with the full connivance of the town hall, who then ordered the mostly expat residents to pay fines to legalise their properties, as has been done since time began.

    Unfortunately the regional government in Valencia intervened because they were not getting their share of any such fines, most of which went no further than the then Mayor’s pocket.

    The houses can’t now be legalised and a stalemate has been reached. Strangely enough, some residents have managed to sell their illegal houses on, God knows how.

  • #115648
    Profile photo of zenkarma
    zenkarma
    Participant

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    You really believe that it was the Spanish government that got themselves into this mess, that they are 100% to blame? That no foreigners have any blame at all and the global economic meltdown, that enriched a few at the expense of the many, had no effect at all upon Spain?

    I don’t think you can put a percentage on how much was down to the Spanish government, how much was down to the bankers and how much was down to external factors outside of their control.

    What you can say is that the majority of the current situation was of their own making. The Spanish economy was running at a surplus around 2007/8 when the worldwide banking crash happened that threw the whole world, not just Europe into a financial chaos. The Spanish economy is still oddly enough quite strong, exports are holding up well so is GDP. What really sunk Spains economy was the collapse of the property market there and that was very much down to the Spanish government and the bankers.

    No-one forced the Spanish central or regional governments to build and sell so much property, no-one forced the bankers to borrow so much money and lend it out to all comers thereby making millions for themselves, no-one forced the Spanish politicians and building developers to be utterly corrupt in building these properties. The fact that they did was purely down to greed, nothing else and as such the massive losses the government is now suffering in having to bail out these greedy bankers is purely down to their own making. I’d have let the banks go bust, whilst protecting savers money – tough shit. Good riddance to you corrupt greedy risk takers with other peoples money.

  • #115655
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    I’m afraid that until they reform the financial system it won’t be good riddance.

  • #115657
    Profile photo of zenkarma
    zenkarma
    Participant

    @chopera wrote:

    I’m afraid that until they reform the financial system it won’t be good riddance.

    They won’t reform them, they rely on them too much. It’s one great big ponzi scheme and when all the loans get called in the banks end up owing billions that the Government then bails them out with. Except the taxpayer foots the bill.

    No wonder the Spanish people are pissed off.

  • #115660
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    No-one forced the Spanish central or regional governments to build and sell so much property, no-one forced the bankers to borrow so much money and lend it out to all comers thereby making millions for themselves, no-one forced the Spanish politicians and building developers to be utterly corrupt in building these properties. The fact that they did was purely down to greed, nothing else and as such the massive losses the government is now suffering in having to bail out these greedy bankers is purely down to their own making.

    As we say in the US: “Bullshit.”

    Since I’ve been aware of economic dynamics there have been maybe 20 economic bubbles and “gluts”, in various industries, including several regional real estates bubbles, the tech bubble, the dot-com bubble, etc.

    And EACH time to the extent possible, the local governments have ridden the band-wagon. I’ve never seen a government ‘slow down’ a hot economic sector because of risk. No, the only time they slow down things is because of stupid policies that over-tax so they can get more money.

    There are problems in Spain, including problems with the government. But you are ridiculously simplistic in blaming the government for the bubble.

  • #115663
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    The blame game, eh? We’ve just lost our precious triple A rating in the UK and I want to blame someone, but who? Cameron, Osbourne, Brown, Balls? I’ll settle for Mervyn King, I can’t stand the little twit.

    I’ve got toothache too, he can take the blame for that as well.

  • #115664
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    There are problems in Spain, including problems with the government. But you are ridiculously simplistic in blaming the government for the bubble.

    I agree to a certain extent. Greed stupidity and incompetence across the board caused this depression for that’s what we are in. Greed among investment bankers in the US and Europe. Greed among directors of European banks, British, French, German and Spanish. Greed and corruption among Spanish regional governments who were/are in bed with developers and bankers. Greed among developers who had in turn access to virtual free money.

    Stupidity by international banks for lending money to anyone who asked. Incompetence by politicians and central bankers for allowing the bubble to continue for years and in Spain not reforming and enforcing their laws on property.

    The reason politicians and central bankers particularly in Europe did not act to reign back the bubble was because the inflow of tax receipts and higher employment was too great a temptation. They collectively and tacitly sat on their hands and wanted to take political credit for the good times.

    No politician ever wants to end the party either historically or those in the future.

  • #115665
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    As we are talking about simplicity. The main protaganist in the Spanish situation is the absence of prudence.

    I do not blame the Spanish for jumping on the band wagon. Spain does not have a economic model to sustain 55 million odd people and this is one reason that all & sundry wants to be a civil servent to provide them financial security.

    These civil servents are than underpinned by irrelevent paper chase paid for by high, deteremental, unjust taxation that is harmeful to the society.

  • #115666
    Profile photo of zenkarma
    zenkarma
    Participant

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    [But you are ridiculously simplistic in blaming the government for the bubble.

    Of course it’s simplistic, to be anything else involves tedious and complex reasoning – reasoning of which not everyone is going to understand, nor wants to understand. Because it’s complex.

    Here’s an even more simplistic way of looking at it in the form of an analogy:

    If you imagine Spain as a company producing products, the products of which are properties. The CEO is the Spanish Prime Minister, the board of directors the MP’s and parliament, the finance department the bankers, the property developers the managers, the builders the workers and the estate agents the sales force.

    Any normal, efficiently run company would match output with demand and only produce sufficient quantity of products to match that demand. That would produce a reasonable profit for all concerned and everyone would be happy.

    What it wouldn’t do is borrow billions of euros of cheap credit to continue churning out products regardless of what the demand for those products actually was. Unsold product inventory is expensive, it’s sunk costs that are not being recovered.

    That’s exactly what happened of course and this is precisely why there is such a glut of unsold properties in Spain caused predominantly by the poor leadership of the person running the company and the finance department for allowing such massive borrowing.

    If Spain was that company, it would now be bankrupt and out of business and the CEO, Board of Directors and Finance Department would be the ones to blame. No-one in their right mind would run their business in the same way as Spain did during the boom years and the reason they did so was sheer greed.

    However, you seem to want to blame the situation on the demand drying up for these products caused primarily by the economy contraction in other parts of Europe and the World.

    It is of course entirely your prerogative to believe anything you want to, but those of us with more sense know exactly what happened and who is to blame.

  • #115667
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @shakeel wrote:

    Spain does not have a economic model to sustain 55 million odd people and this is one reason that all & sundry wants to be a civil servant to provide them financial security.

    Nit picking I know but the population of Spain in 2010 was 47 million. Probably a lot less since the crash as migrant workers left. The country does in fact have quite a decent industrial base in the Basque, Madrid and Catalonia regions. Good pharmaceutics and light engineering and booming intensive agriculture. It is also a world leader in alternative energy.

    The property boom has turned out to be a curse on the nation and derailed it for some years but there are positive signs the country will recover.

    If it has any sense it will discourage second home ownership in all it’s forms and make it prohibitively expensive with taxes to stop it ever happening again. Again, happily in my view there are signs that is the intention.

  • #115668
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    It is also a world leader in alternative energy.

    Spain seems to be but is it actually successful economically.? The windfarms have been heavily subsidised and I recently saw an article about solar farms in Spain that after the developers had got European grants to build them they have been left to rust. Just asking I have no idea.

  • #115669
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    If Spain was that company, it would now be bankrupt and out of business and the CEO, Board of Directors and Finance Department would be the ones to blame. No-one in their right mind would run their business in the same way as Spain did during the boom years and the reason they did so was sheer greed.

    However, you seem to want to blame the situation on the demand drying up for these products caused primarily by the economy contraction in other parts of Europe and the World.

    It is of course entirely your prerogative to believe anything you want to, but those of us with more sense know exactly what happened and who is to blame.

    If half the ‘industrialized countries’ were companies, most would have declared bankruptcy at one time or another.

    And it is not me who wants to blame EVERYTHING on any one variable in our complex economies.

    But if you really feel that way about Spain, why are you here?

  • #115670
    Profile photo of zenkarma
    zenkarma
    Participant

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    If half the ‘industrialized countries’ were companies, most would have declared bankruptcy at one time or another.

    Haha. Most are bankrupt, what do you think those massive debts they have are? And why do you think the Chinese are busily buying up those debts?

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    And it is not me who wants to blame EVERYTHING on any one variable in our complex economies.

    No, you don’t want to see what is so blindingly obvious and staring you in the face, you want to think there’s some other reason why Spains economy is in the toilet apart from the government and bankers who put it there.

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    But if you really feel that way about Spain, why are you here?

    I actually think you have comprehension problems, you read, but you don’t comprehend.

    Just because I happen to believe that Spains current economic woes were inflicted upon themselves by corrupt, inept and incompetent politicians and bankers doesn’t automatically mean I dislike the people, the culture and the country itself. The two are not mutually exclusive, I would have thought that was bleedin’ obvious wouldn’t you?

    Apparently not. 🙄

  • #115671
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    Haha. Most are bankrupt, what do you think those massive debts they have are? And why do you think the Chinese are busily buying up those debts?

    If most countries are bankrupt, then WHY did you make a big deal about Spain being bankrupt if she were a company?

    Your opinions are all over the place.

    But addressing your original post, I’ll ask the Spanish National Suicide Prevention Network take time out from their busy schedule to set up a fund-raising campaign for you to alleviate the horror you sustain by paying a lousy 50 euros a month more than Spaniards.

    And now, as this discussion is pointless, my side of it with you is ending now.

    Have a nice evening.

  • #115672
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Way to go Gary, USA! USA! 😛

    Mind you I think he knows how to store potatoes 😆

  • #115673
    Profile photo of zenkarma
    zenkarma
    Participant

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    If most countries are bankrupt, then WHY did you make a big deal about Spain being bankrupt if she were a company?

    Because you don’t appear to understand how or why Spain got itself into the mess it did. So I had to put it into simple terms for you, simple to understand for people with comprehension problems.

    The answer of why I focused on Spain particularly (when there are plenty of other countries in a similar situation) is equally simple. Read the topic. See the word? Now re-read my original post, where that word is used. See the correlation now? It’s simple, but not for someone with comprehension problems. So let me spell it out for you:

    Spain is corrupt. It’s run by corrupt politicians. The bankers and property developers are equally corrupt. Not only are they corrupt they’re greedy as well. Is the penny starting to drop for you yet?

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    Your opinions are all over the place.

    Oh! My opinions are all over the place? Despite your singular inability to understand and comprehend what you read? I think you’ll find I’ve been pretty consistent in what I’ve been saying here, the only reason you think my opinions are all over the place is either because you can’t comprehend them or because you don’t happen to agree with them. Either way it doesn’t make my opinions wrong!

    @garysfbcn wrote:

    But addressing your original post, I’ll ask the Spanish National Suicide Prevention Network take time out from their busy schedule to set up a fund-raising campaign for you to alleviate the horror you sustain by paying a lousy 50 euros a month more than Spaniards.

    Yes, strangely enough I do object to being ripped off in having to pay much higher banking fees and property taxes as a non-Spanish resident. I am not a tax resident of Spain, why should I have to pay their taxes?

    However, for someone who appears to not worry about the corrupt politicians running Spain, you obviously don’t appear to think that non-residents getting ripped off by having to pay non-resident taxes is unfair.

    Therein I think lies our difference of opinion.

    PS By being married to a Spanish tax-resident, you are yourself fiscally a Spanish tax-resident. You therefore can also look forward to being ripped off by the same corrupt Spanish government officials as I am. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

  • #115674
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    It seems some of us are on a war footing, though it’s comforting to read that most of us are disgusted by Spanish corruption, just as Spanish people are.

    But it’s not just Spain. I’ve just finished reading Peter Mayle’s Hotel Pastich, not in the same class as A Year In Provence, but both books are true observations of the nicest province in France. And guess what? There’s black money everywhere, the country is afloat with it, just like Spain.

    I’m going to throw caution into the wind and ignore previous threats to have me denounced for admitting paying black money to a Spanish builder, hopefully the Malos are all in the Ivy on this Saturday night.

    You can’t live in Spain if you don’t pay black money, it has been the country’s custom since long before the Inquisition. If you rail against it, your life will be too uncomfortable and you would have to go and live elsewhere.

    The paying of black money doesn’t bother me too much and I sleep peacefully at night, a lot better than I did when I was living down Marbella way, the most corrupt place I’ve ever come across. Yet two of the Malos lived down that way and didn’t seem to notice the stench of the place.

    What does bother me is some recent graffiti in this graffiti strewn country. Guiris Go Home. That worries me, and I’ve not seen much of it in the past.

  • #115675
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant
  • #115676
    Profile photo of GarySFBCN
    GarySFBCN
    Participant

    @angie wrote:

    Way to go Gary, USA! USA! 😛

    Mind you I think he knows how to store potatoes 😆

    Ha! For the record, I’m in Barcelona right now.

  • #115677
    Profile photo of logan
    logan
    Participant

    @Rocker wrote:

    I’ve just finished reading Peter Mayle’s Hotel Pastich, not in the same class as A Year In Provence, but both books are true observations of the nicest province in France.

    Peter Mayle writes fiction about France. The Daily Mail writes fiction about everything.

  • #115678
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Barcelona Gary, yes, I knew you were there, however I read a post of his which was pretty rude about Americans in general 😉

    Will attempt to get back on topic now 😉

  • #115683
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I don’t feel inclined to speak up for either Peter Mayle or the Daily Mail, but I suppose on the frivolous front they both serve a purpose, some light entertainment away from the political dryness of the Telegraph.

    I’m also getting a bit fed up with El Pais, their anti-corruption campaign of late is well over the top. If you repeat something over and over again, you bore your reader, and then you lose him altogether, and you’re writing into emptiness.

    One last thing about the Mail, though. They know what people want and break up their daft stories with pictures of bums, because that’s what people are more interested in.

  • #115684
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    This might help get rid of a bit of the black money market for a while?

    Radical overhaul of Social Security and self-employment system – but mainly for the under-30s
    NEW measures to encourage self-employed people and small businesses could be brought into force as a debate is due to take place in the Council of Ministers next week.
    Self-employed persons aged 30 and under, or those newly self-employed, will only have to pay 50 euros a month in Social Security for the first six months instead of the usual 270 euros, and will get a 50 per cent discount for the next six months dropping to 30 per cent for the third period of six months.
    This 30 per cent discount will continue to apply to women aged under 35.
    The move has been welcomed by the public, but the age limit has caused widespread outrage, since finding a job after age 35 or 40 can be difficult with companies seeking young employees.
    Many question whether this ‘discrimination’ is in fact constitutional.
    When a person decides to start up a new business or go self-employed, but is on the dole, they will be able to still claim for the first nine months, although it is not clear whether this is in full or in part.
    The under-30s who start a business and offer a job to anyone aged 45 or over will get a reduction on the Social Security paid for these employees – 100 per cent for the first year – a move that will continue until unemployment rates fall below 15 per cent.
    Other aspects under discussion are to allow business people or the self-employed to wait until an invoice is paid before they pay the IVA on it, which is normally due in full by the end of the year and can be crippling in the event of non-payment of the client in question.
    Anyone under 30 who comes off the dole to work for themselves and finds it does not work out will be able to take up their dole money entitlement again.
    A unique web portal run by the public sector will allow private-sector firms to advertise jobs, so that the unemployed will know where to look.
    Companies taking on under-30s with no work experience will get a reduction of 75 per cent in Social Security payments, or 100 per cent if the firm has fewer than 250 employees.
    Bonuses of between 500 and 700 euros a year for companies who make temporary job contracts permanent for the under-30s will be given to companies.
    Self-employed persons starting out will get a 20-per-cent reduction in their income tax for the first two years and those who are on the dole when they start up will get full exemption.
    New companies will pay 15 per cent tax rather than 21 per cent for the first two years up to the first 300,000 euros a year, and for anything over this, 20 per cent.
    Other measures are being taken to encourage larger companies to float their shares on the stock market.

    Source: Think Spain

  • #115686
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @itsme. This is a typical example of Spain. To little to late & with strings attached. The above is complicated and has given the cvil servents something to do to device all the above.

    To apply the above in practise one will need the services of a Gestor which will cost money & the Government will colloect IVA.

    Bringing into equation age contraints, time i.e. percentage allowed after six months etc. In a Country where simple things can takes months to get done. Six months can go past before the business being on its feet. Try a debtor to pay you on time i.e. in six months in order that you can make payment to the authorities.

    In the end I understand & hope from your above posting that above is costed out, some how knowing Spain it would have been done on a whip.

    It would have been much simple to say €50.00 for the next three years. This will allow time to organise & take your business of the ground. To expect the emplyment to fall beow 15%. Whose statistics woud you believe ?? and I do not expect the level of 15% can be reached for atleast another fifteen years if not more.

  • #115687
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I agree these things are not bad but they create a bloated system with need for supervision.

  • #115696
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Spain is slowly trying to change a system where something like 20% of the workforce work black, but it will take a while.

    A foreigner, especially, trying to start a legal business in Spain will find it almost impossible. The bureaucracy is mindboggling and designed to obstruct businesses. That’s why the country has the Gestoria system, a buffer between private individuals and the state.

    Even if your Spanish is fluent and you’ve studied Spanish law, there is no point in trudging along to the various official departments for your paperwork, instead you are better off seeing Pepe, the Gestor, in his little office in the side street.

    He can achieve more in ten minutes on the phone to his contacts, than your month of queuing in front of nasty funcinarios. He will have your papers ready for you in a day or so, all stamped up and legal.

    And he will want paying in cash. That’s how it starts and that’s how it will go on.

  • #115700
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Commendable, congratulations. I wonder what Marbella town hall would have made of those organisations applying for licences?

  • #115704
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @mgspain. Deloitte and KPMG are seriously big boys. What did you use them for ? Multimillion pounds of business start up. ??? Their fees must be in thousands & Pepe could do it in few €s.

    THe Well known and well respect Gesator in CDS is ” Bocahegra” I have used them they are extremely competant &n reasonably priced.

  • #115709
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @mgspain wrote:

    @Rocker wrote:
    Commendable, congratulations. I wonder what Marbella town hall would have made of those organisations applying for licences?

    Whilst they’re good and what they do, they also made a huge cockup, I was supposed to qualify for the “Beckham tax” rate of 25%, they missed the deadline. 🙁

    Pepe would have sorted it for you with one phone call to Hacienda.

    Seriously though, my business start-up in Marbella all those years ago was as a one-man band and I couldn’t have done it without the Pepes of this world, and I was in their world.

    If you widen the topic, what about those tens of thousands of honest expats who have bought property in Spain. They’ve employed solicitors, architects, bank managers, builders, notaries etc and later discovered that despite their total honesty, they are living in illegal houses. Houses that can’t be legalised because they should never have been built on non-building land. And the Spanish trickery means that they are shown as promoters at the notary, which they didn’t understand when they signed.

    Or even if their properties were legal, regional government can easily pass a retrospective law to make them illegal. Then you have the land grab scandal and all the other things us Guris will never understand.

    You can still have a great life in Spain, a million of us are doing just that, but if you’re inclined to lecture Spanish people on black money, you’re living in the wrong country.

    I was going to talk about the roundabout girls too, but this post is already too long.

  • #115713
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hehe the round about girls are a sight to see and also the ones just sun bathing in the middle of no where.

  • #115725
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    ha ha, I’ve seen them as well….. sat on plastic chairs with their cool boxes and hardly any clothes. Lovely… who would be crazy enough to stop ? (oh, ok, dodgy guys, i’ve answered my own question).

    On a serious note though I don’t think that it’s great to have children seeing it. I know there are plenty of flashing light ‘nightclubs’ which are big in the hotel business 😉 but to have it so blatantly on the street isn’t great for tourism (nor locals).

  • #115727
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    You can look at the roundabout girls in two ways, laugh at their silly hotpants in our currently freezing weather, or look a bit closer at their youth and desperation.

    You could look closer yet and see the needle marks on their arms and then the reality strikes home.

    But I don’t like being realistic on a Monday morning, it’s bad enough watching the pound slide and somehow thinking that the Berlusconi clown could actually save the pound.

  • #115783
    Profile photo of zenkarma
    zenkarma
    Participant

    Being the honest person I am (yes, you can all laugh) I came across this very interesting article, that partly confirms what katy has been saying, even though the way in which it was expressed was confused. Bear in mind this tax only applies to transfer tax paid by the purchaser and has nothing whatsoever to do with capital gains tax or tax paid by the seller.

    It does indeed appear that the tax authorities can come up with their own valuations based on what their (out of date) index’s tell them the property should be worth.

    I put the link to the article here (despite being able to sit on it and conceal it) simply because I’m interested in truth and fact and not simply being ‘right’.

    This should be of interest to anyone currently purchasing or considering purchasing a property in Spain at their current prices.

    http://www.murciatoday.com/be-informed-property-tax-is-calculated-on-the-book-value-of-property-not-mid-crisis-prices_15223-a.html

  • #115784
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Perhaps, among other things, the Murcia article once again highlights the inability of the Spanish Civil Service and other authorities to ever admit they are wrong; such an admission and paying compensation is not built into the system.

    I have had a few disputes with the major players over the years where I was obviously in the right and my right was acknowledged by the parties concerned, ranging from Telefonica to Trafico, but they couldn’t pay me compensation or amend my documentation because the central computers were not set up to admit being wrong.

    I have had compensation by way of reduced bills over a period of years, but other official documentation, including my Spanish driving licence and NIE number still bear inaccurate information because the system cannot correct it.

    It would need a decree approved by the King, and he’s got other things on his mind right now.

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