Xavier Vidal-Folch – 2 FEB 2020 – Image: M. Minocri
When on Thursday, the president of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, meets with Quim Torra, he will encounter a paradox. His interlocutor will be a president of the Generalitat legally holding 100% of his duties. But politically amortized, also 100%.
The slow but brave dignity Esquerra erected on Monday by preventing Torra’s illegal continuity in the seat has not yet been valued in all its dimensions.
It is the most categorical rupture of the illegal and unilateral secessionist strategy; the burial of the pro-independence unanimity, that concept coined by Pierre Vilar; the implicit recognition of the sterility of the procés and its zenith of 2017, and the conversion of the one who embodies the presidency in a mere shadow of nothingness.
The effort of the contradictory Esquerra must be extoled. It undertakes it with its leader behind bars. Catalonia is already another Catalonia. Although defying the mess will be arduous, since more than 70 pending trials are to be solved in court.
Thus, eight years of Catalan decline – political, economic, of prestige – have passed because of the secessionist drift adopted in 2012. Of these, two long years of legislative paralysis after the helm of September 6-7 and the illegal referendum of 1-O. And almost two years of a Govern’s nap which nobody respects, neither his followers, nor the opposition, not even the majority of his own counsellors, although in this case it becomes modulated with a mute.
The resignation / call for deferred ballot boxes, by Torra, certifies these disasters.
Although he disguises them. He buys time to pretend that his biennium has served more than just zero; he seeks to hurt less Esquerra, author of the budget, although this is an inane dream without Govern that applies it, and intends to capitalize on the dialogue “with Spain”. The tightrope walker is perched on two milestones that he rejected: a budget that he dislikes most and despises, and a dialogue board that, as he said, did not concern him. As if he could still mediate something.
He cannot. He is an obsolete president, politically in office. Little of what Sanchez can talk to the pre-retired Torra may be subject to implementation.
Well, Catalonia is already another Catalonia, even if it keeps an empty President, unable to negotiate anything, to agree on anything or to implement anything: he himself said that his mandate has come “to the end of the road”.
Torra will arrive at the meeting claiming the right of self-determination and amnesty. And his interlocutor will do well to explain – to his followers – that this right is only for the colonies and countries subject to heinous dictatorships. And that the amnesty is forbidden by the Constitution (article 62): the law “may not authorize general pardons”. Logical, because an amnesty implies, in substance, a regime change.
Another thing is that particularized pardons must be envisioned, not to erase illegalities but to calm down dragged citizens. Or a reform of the Criminal Code, which was proposed first by the Supreme Court itself: to better fit the criminal types to the crimes, yes, committed.