Barcelona 23 MAY 2021
Carles Puigdemont EUROPA PRESS
Words do not serve to name things, but to turn their meaning upside down and build parallel realities
Strange time when words do not serve to name things, but to hide them! Thanks to the Adamic pretension of creating the world through the magic wand of the story, of the capricious designation, turning upside down even the meaning of things, we come across parallel realities, bubbles of meaning and ‘fake news’. ‘, the biggest of which is to say that the ones that are true are false and the false ones are true, as Donald Trump has masterfully done since he entered politics.
If we pay attention to the words of Pere Aragonès, we see that the institution of Catalan government, arising from the Spanish Constitution of 1978 and based on the Autonomous Statute of 1906, has been transformed into a republican Generalitat, a lovely lie which will get for sure the sympathy and applause from at least the voters and supporters of Esquerra Republicana, and the suspicion of the voters and supporters of Junts per Catalunya, the party sponsoring the unknown and ambiguous identity device called the Consell de la República.
The invention of a republican Generalitat is a two-way linguistic fiction, against those in favor of maintaining the current status quo as well as those who refuse to accept the limits of statutory and constitutional self-government. As if it were the forerunner institution of the unlikely Catalan Republic, born on October 27, 2017 and perpetually postponed since then in the political practice of all pro-independence parties. Saved by the words that designate it, even if the designated object is literally empty.
In the face of the members of Junts, staunch defenders of the Council of the Republic, the House of Waterloo, the legacy of October 1 and the construction of the independent Catalan Republic, it tells them that their invented institutions are not necessary. And even less to try to control the Generalitat to alleviate the autonomist disease it suffers. Since its president is from the Republican Left, this is the Republican Generalitat and they hate other republican artifacts that can be added.
We must recognize the will of Aragonès to emancipate himself from Puigdemont and Junts per Catalunya. If it were translated into facts, it would be perhaps the first time, after having obeyed everything and until the last moment. In fact, the whole negotiation and its outcome, starting with the color of the presidency and the table of Parliament, constitute a complete defeat of the Left. Junts has achieved a government to their liking with more budgetary power and political weight than the Left, has avoided the punishment of new elections and has left everything ready for the fight that will start as soon as the government is set to continue to contest pro-independence hegemony.
Since there are no definitive defeats, it will always be necessary to count on the margins offered in this case by the central institution of self-government, the president, now more prepared than ever to assert himself in his authority, shun guardianship or even take advantage of it all to make a gesture that makes it very clear who is in charge here. It will not be easy. Cacophony has been entrenched in the pro-independence side for many years. Neither Puigdemont’s verbosity nor Junqueras’ silences will facilitate it. Nor are the 46 sheets of the government agreement, full of bold and thick letters and even more so of bizarre bodies, organizational charts, monitoring and coordination commissions. Almost destroyed the institutions we had, the pro-independence sector has been entertained by inventing new ones. First, those of Waterloo to maintain the legitimacy of the Generalitat deposed by art.155, and now, the current ones, to monitor the Generalitat governed by the republicanism of Aragonès.
The new great pro-independence artifact is the Space for Coordination, Consensus and Collegiate Strategic Management, where five entities will be represented – the three pro-independence parties and the two associations mobilized with the ‘procés’, the ANC and Omnium. The body, of great complexity and very indeterminate objectives, will have a Strategic Direction, a Technical Committee and six working groups: municipal, parliamentary, international, anti-repression, negotiation process and “mobilization for the attack on the state”. Relevant detail: it will act “discreetly” and “place its work out of the media focus”.
The tortured prose of the agreement wants to recover in a difficult way to understand the Council of the Republic: “We bet on a space that acts in a discreet way and that temporarily seeks coordination with the Council for the Republic until it finalizes its reformulation in consensus between all the organizations so that the space of Coordination, Consensus and strategic Direction can be placed in its frame”. It is never so true as in this case that the paper puts up with everything.
To top it off, there is another organization chart of similar complexity, this bilateral between ERC and Junts, instead of the five components of the Coordination Space, to resolve conflicts and coordinate the ministries, as if the government was not itself a coordinating and decision-making body. There will therefore be a Parliamentary Coordination Team, another Government Coordination Team, an Agreement Monitoring Team, sectoral working groups, an Agreement Monitoring Meeting – this one with the scent of recreation or summer camps – and of course a Political Steering Committee.
Finally, then, a full job to spend in meetings. Will there be time to work on what citizens are interested in? You have to doubt it. In any case, of republic, very little. If we look at the citizens, all this seems to be intended for half of the Catalans, the pro-independence activists. If we look at transparency and good governance, the division of powers and the rule of law, first impressions are not good either. The syndrome of secrecy and hiding, so present throughout the ‘procés’, persists in the agreement. Lots of republic in words, but few republican values and civic republicanism in deeds, this is the bleak summary.