05 Jan Something is wrong with the Generalitat
Font: Tribuna Libre
Tony Judt was right when he gave his impassioned plea to revive collective values and political commitment the title ‘Something is wrong’, according to a Google Books’ review. And even more so was the one who decided to include it in the scenography of the year end speech of the Generalitat Valenciana.
Something is wrong when books that are presumably the President’s own, abound in his office. Indicative of the fact that he does not employ the time he spends there to work but rather to read marxist political thinkers and poetry reading matters. It is always a good thing that a president reads, but it makes no sense that he does so during working hours, not to mention that it is disrespectful to the citizens who elected him.
Ranging from revival, longing, and criticism of the capitalist system, Puig’s office’s book catalogue is worthy of a monograph. Notes that sketch a political figure with an affected smile so perfectly summarized by Francisco Brines in his ‘Romancillo del Pasado’ (A Little Romance from the Past) that in all likelihood Ximo Puig reads and re-reads while snacking on oranges and clementines from the Comunitat Valenciana. The ones that he has within reach. It could be a subliminal message to Juan Córdoba’s political party that can decide whether Puig will be able to continue reading in his office for another four years or not.
Titles like ‘Contra el fanatismo’ (Against fanaticism), by Amos Oz; ‘La identidad cultural no existe’ (Cultural identity does not exist), by François Julien; ‘Entre dos nadas’ (Between two nothings), by Francisco Brines; ‘En defensa de la ilustración’ (Defending illustration), by Steve Pinker; ‘El orden del día’ (The order of the day), by Eric Vuillard; ‘Requiem por el sueño americano’ (Requiem for the American dream), by Noam Chomsky; ‘Ernest Lluch’, by Joan Esculies, or ‘Algo va mal’ (Something is wrong), by Tony Judt.
And it’s true. Something is wrong. If a picture is worth a thousand words, the scenography in which the President’s work takes place, traditionally dedicated to private business meetings and hearings, is a real puzzle of what Ximo Puig’s mind conceals. A self-centered politician unable to accept the passing of time and more concerned about the epidermis than the crux of the matter.
For example, let’s dwell for a moment in the election of a ceramic plate from Manises as a centerpiece. A memory of the glorious past of a dilapidated industry and a painful oblivion of the past of Álcora, Onda, or Paterna, just to mention some with similar importance. A pity that among the books in which his speeches and interventions are drawn on, none is about the ceramic industry or, at least, a catalogue of the González Martí National Ceramic Museum and Sumptuary Arts to describe the magnificence of this sector and its geographical influence in Alicante, Castellón, and Valencia.
Something is wrong when the President’s red quill –of course- reigns on his desk to sign ‘important agreements’ like the Botanical Pact. Important for Ximo Puig, that is. A Faustian pact that got him the Generalitat’s chair at the expense of paying off the culture, education, and social services. Or to sign the pact for a fair system of financing that has remained dead letter.
Something is wrong when a picture of the hurried visit the prime minister, Pedro Sánchez, paid to the acts of the Dia de la Comunitat (Region Day) to bestow the Alta Distinción upon Carmen Alborch, who died a few weeks later, stands out in his office. And it’s wrong because it’s not a remembrance of Carmen, which would make sense. But because it’s a claudication before the one who commands the Spanish Socialist ship, who spent just two hours here while he sets up mini peaks and showers other autonomies with investments.
That picture that stands out in Ximo Puig’s office of someone who only comes to Comunitat Valenciana to enjoy concerts in Benicàssim International Festival (FIB) or bestow medals on former socialist ministers, and whose policies, to all intents and purposes, cut back on transfers, maintained highway’s payments, offer no response to underfunding in the Comunitat and conclude the year with constraints on the growth of Cava Valenciano (Valencian champagne).
If a picture is worth a thousand words, we could mute the television because there was enough noise in the staging set for Ximo Puig’s speech.
I would have really liked another speech. One taking place in the actual area where Ximo Puig carries out his work and not in a papier mâché set that, like in fallas, of how grotesque it was, he gave a very realistic political profile.
At least he remembered to support gender equality and made mention of it in a relevant day. The rest was a listing of glorious deeds for Puig but banal for Valencian society, from the approval of the additional provision so that the State investments in this community equal the demographic weight of the region, which to all intents and purposes doesn’t entail the funding received will be modified, to the budgets approval ‘for the fourth time in due course’, when the tripartite holds the majority in the chamber and it’s every administrator’s duty to get budgets off the ground so as to guarantee the administration operates properly.
If those are the Consell’s achievements, as citizens from Valencia we would appreciate it if elections were called for as soon as possible in order to elect other representatives.
Always looking back
missing who I was
and when I was, I didn’t know.
I must have been very happy,
for I wouldn’t mind
go back to that kind of living
with the same unawareness
of not knowing about me
but, to the passing of time,
which was all I lost.