December 3, 2022

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Home » Content » Quim Torra is not the president that Catalonia needs now
The peak of the pandemic has coincided with the 40th anniversary of the restitution of the Parliament of Catalonia, our highest institution of self-government. The contrast between those days of the spring of 1980, brimming with optimism and collective hope, and these days of the spring of 2020, marked by sadness and the vertigo of uncertainty, produces chills. I do not want to overdo things against President Quim Torra. He is as he is and you cannot ask for more. He acceded to the position by accident, as vicar president in the absence of Carles Puigdemont. To highlight the provisional nature of his duties, he has even left the presidential office of the Palau de la Generalitat empty. He presumes that he is not a "professional" politician and I assure you that he demonstrates a profound ignorance of the operation of the administration and of the mazes of public management, which also do not interest him at all. I do not doubt that Quim Torra is, in his own way, a great patriot and I respect his passionate and platonic love for “his” Catalonia “Noucentista”. But I have to say that, unfortunately, he is not the man Catalonia needs at these critical moments in our history. He has no energy, he has no empathy, he has no ability to summon - beyond the circle of uncritical convinced around him - he has no creative or innovative genius, he has no charisma, he has no credibility. Its public figure has been fading and fading as the Covid-19 pandemic has progressed and destroyed Catalonia. Today, Quim Torra is a tired man, overwhelmed and stunned. His name will be associated, forever and ever, with the health, humanitarian and economic debacle that Catalonia suffered in the 20th year of the 21st century. And history will say that the Government of the Generalitat, under its presidency, acted in a very poor and insufficient way.

Opinion 05/20/2020 15:45

Vice President Aragonès, with President Torra

Jaume Reixach

Journalist by vocation and, therefore, founder and editor of EL TRIANGLE since 1990. Militant of the cause for a better world

With more than 260,000 people infected and almost 12,000 dead, Covid-19 has hit Catalonia dramatically, with a virulence which has been seen in few places on the planet. The economic effects of the pandemic are also appalling. The strike had risen, at the end of April, to 467,810 people and almost 100,000 companies have filed ERTEs, which affect more than 715,000 workers.

The health and social situation is of an extreme emergency. The queues to get free food are the expression of the misery that is undermining society. The “new normal” announced to us will inevitably be accompanied by the closure of many businesses and the deepening of the labor crisis.

The peak of the pandemic has coincided with the 40th anniversary of the restitution of the Parliament of Catalonia, our highest institution of self-government. The tragic circumstances that we have to live through have tarnished the institutional commemoration of this event. For those of us born and raised under the boot of Francoism, the return of President Josep Tarradellas, the approval of the Statute of Autonomy and the reestablishment of the Parliament of the Ciutadella Park are unforgettable milestones.

The contrast between those days of the spring of 1980, brimming with optimism and collective hope, and these days of the spring of 2020, marked by sadness and the vertigo of uncertainty, produces chills. The feeling of hecatomb is, in our case, increased by the absence of a political leadership and a solid referent, capable of responding to the anguishes and desires of the Catalans.

I do not want to overdo things against President Quim Torra. He is as he is and you cannot ask for more. He acceded to the position by accident, as vicar president in the absence of Carles Puigdemont. To highlight the provisional nature of his duties, he has even left the presidential office of the Palau de la Generalitat empty. He presumes that he is not a “professional” politician and I assure you that he demonstrates a profound ignorance of the operation of the administration and of the mazes of public management, which also do not interest him at all.

Quim Torra transmits stress, insecurity and precariousness. He knows that his continuity depends on the decision of the Supreme Court on his ridiculous act of disobedience with the banner on the balcony of the Palau in Plaza de San Jaime. Due to his dignity and that of the institution he represents, he cannot link the country’s political, economic and social agenda to the judicial outcome of this minor and anecdotal episode. It is to despise the Generalitat and Catalonia, in moments of great drama and collective pain.

He admires men of action (Pau Claris, Rafael de Casanova, Francesc Macià, the Badia brothers …), but Quim Torra is not a man of action nor does he have command manners. I do not doubt that the delicate family situation that he has, attacked by health problems, greatly conditions his way of acting. I understand him.

Unlike other historical independence referents, the current President of the Generalitat will never risk his life or heritage for patriotic ideals. To understand us: President Lluís Companys had the family problem of his son Lluïset, but he proclaimed the Catalan State, became deeply involved in the Civil War and ended up shot in the Montjuic castle.

I do not doubt that Quim Torra is, in his own way, a great patriot and I respect his passionate and platonic love for “his” Catalonia “Noucentista”. But I have to say that, unfortunately, he is not the man Catalonia needs at these critical moments in our history. He has no energy, he has no empathy, he has no ability to summon – beyond the circle of uncritical convinced around him – he has no creative or innovative genius, he has no charisma, he has no credibility.

Its public figure has been fading and fading as the Covid-19 pandemic has progressed and destroyed Catalonia. Today, Quim Torra is a tired man, overwhelmed and stunned.

His name will be associated, forever and ever, with the health, humanitarian and economic debacle that Catalonia suffered in the 20th year of the 21st century. And history will say that the Government of the Generalitat, under its presidency, acted in a very poor and insufficient way. The high mortality recorded in the nursing homes for the elderly, which are the exclusive competence of the Catalan Government, will haunt him for all that remains of his life and beyond.

That is why, as I know that he is a good person and that he has his feelings on the surface, I ask him to keep the word given and call elections, now that the budgets – even if they are a dead letter – have already been approved by Parliament. Quim Torra cannot deny the evidence: the JxCat and ERC coalition government that he chairs is broken and fully amortized.

Also the political space that he represents, which is a coalition of the PDECat, CDC and Carles Puigdemont independent claque, is running out. After the Supreme Court ruling on the Palau case, the PDECat – CDC’s continuing organization – is dead and buried. This has been seen by Marta Pascal, who, quite rightly, has broken the card and created the new Catalan Nationalist Party (PNC), which will collect the remains of the convergent shipwreck.

The legislature that began with the 21-D elections of 2017 is shattered and finished. It can explode at any time: by the Supreme Court ruling, by the ERC decision to withdraw from the Government or by an internal split of JxCat that joins the PNC project. Quim Torra is fully aware of these enormous weaknesses and the most honorable thing is that he himself now assumes the inevitable decision that, sooner or later, he has to adopt: the calling of elections to the Catalan Parliament.

Due to his independent pro-independence career, Quim Torra cannot smear his biography. The Government of the Generalitat, which he presides, cannot be left to rot, waiting for the MEP Carles Puigdemont to reorganize, from Waterloo, the puzzle of diverse interests of JxCat (which is a registered trademark of CDC), PDECat, Crida and the Consell per la República.

This gibberish has no solution in sight. Among other things, because directing a Catalan party from Belgium is an impossible task, no matter how much there are Skype, Zoom or Team. Keeping the Government of the Generalitat in a situation of extreme precariousness because it is necessary to buy time for Carles Puigdemont to rebuild the broken vase of the old Convergence is reckless and irresponsible.

President Quim Torra refuses to call early elections with the excuse that the health, economic and social crisis caused in Catalonia by the coronavirus is too serious to do. On the contrary: precisely because the effects of the pandemic have been and are catastrophic and the reconstruction of the country must be carried out urgently, which is why elections must be made now and that the Government of the Generalitat has, as soon as possible better, a new team, prepared and intelligent, with drive, enthusiasm and the ability to mobilize and organize all the positive energies – which are many – that exist in Catalonia.

https://www.eltriangle.eu/es/opinion/quim-torra-no-es-el-presidente-que-cataluna-necesita-ahora_106086_102.html

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