A new video shows grass roots members of Spain’s Socialist Party (PSOE) apologising for the party’s handling of the economy when in power under José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero. Those featured cite the Socialist government’s austerity measures, such as cutting wages and freezing pensions, as among its many mistakes. “We favoured the interests of the few, those who were powerful, over the majority,” says one of the party members. Decisions on social policy are also rued, such as failing to change the religious freedom law, or introduce a dignified death law. The legacy of Zapatero’s handling of the economic crisis has severely hindered his party since it was voted out of power in November 2011 and the PSOE is still struggling to win back voters.
Opposition leader Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba is caught between offering a united front with the government and ripping its policies to shreds.
As the 15-M movement prepares for its first anniversary, it can look back on a year of limited but tangible achievements. But with the Spanish economy going from bad to worse, the organisation now needs to take a step forward.
Spain’s restive northern region is talking of independence. But besides the political obstacles, the legal ones are substantial.
Record cuts, a key regional election, market hostility and a general strike – all in three months. What does all this tell Spain’s prime minister?
The new conservative government has promised to loosen environmental controls that restrict economic growth. But critics say such an approach could lead Spain back to disaster.