19 April 2023

Awake, for morning in the bowl of night has flung the stone that puts the stars to flight.

And, lo, has caught the sultan’s turret in a noose of light!

Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable

 Christopher Howse: ‘A Pilgrim in Spain’

Cosas de España/Galiza

An exciting discovery – 5 stone human faces from the 5th century BC found near Badajoz, evidence of the pre-Roman occupants of Southern Iberia – the Tartessians:-

Per Wiki here: Tartessos was a civilization characterized by its mixture of local Paliohispanic and Phoenician traits. In the historical records, it appears as a semi-mythical harbor city and the surrounding culture on the south coast of the peninsula, at the mouth of the Guadalquivir river in modern Andalucía.

It’s a murky world, local politics, said Lennox Napier in the article I cited yesterday. That was certainly true of a place called Antelope in Oregon, back in the 1980s. Now the subject of a Netflix series – Wild wild country. Which is worth a watch.

Two contrasting imprisonments this week:-

  • A director of a major local company, found guilty of various corporate offences, and
  • A pyromaniac who started 5 fires in one year up in out hills.

The first got 6 years in a luxury jail for politicos, while the second got 17 years in a place which certainly won’t be luxurious. The former has a pool, 2 squash courts, handball and basketball courts, a seven-a-side pitch and gymnasiums. The latter probably doesn’t.

My Ferrol friend, Richard, has provided this nice video of the Camino Inglés, which starts from there.


The problems of the cult-like Scottish Nationalist Party continue to grow. Now its Treasurer has been arrested as a result of the inquiry the party’s finances. Effie Deans addresses the nature of the party here. Superficially, it sounds rather like Cataluña to me. Stoppress: Senior members of the SNP are braced for the imminent arrest of ex-First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, in the wake of detectives interviewing her husband and the party treasurer amid an investigation into party finances. Sic transit gloria Calidoniae. Unionists are not unhappy at the turn of events.

Ms Sturgeon used to be a highly prolific tweeter, with 30,000 to her name. But her last effort was 4 days before her husband’s police interview. Since when she has been uncharacteristically silent. Odd, that.

Seems a shame . . . It’s become a commonplace to say we’ll only realise how important pubs are when they’re gone. With 50 closing every week, and the total dropping from more than 64,000 in 1990 to fewer than 47,000 today, there’s a very real sense that an era lasting at least 700 years is coming to an end.  [A reminder: The Spanish pronounce ‘pub’ as paf. God only knows why.]

The USA/The Way of the World

Rather different from Europe, it seems . . . The profit-related dissemination of ‘bad science’. Taster: Why does such low-quality work slip through? The answer is straightforward: because it appears, if you don’t read it too closely, or if you’re unfamiliar with the basic concepts of evidence-based medicine, to support the liberal view that these treatments are wonderful and shouldn’t be questioned, let alone banned. That’s enough for most people, who are less concerned with whether what they’re sharing is accurate than whether it can help with ongoing, high-stakes political fights. But you’re not being a good ally to trans people if you disseminate shoddy evidence about medicine they might seek. 

How the New York Times distorts language in support of the transgender activists[zealots?]. Bottom line – Trans speak is everywhere — and we need to resist it with every fibre of our being.

The modern trans lobby presents itself as the heir to the old great struggles for women’s suffrage and black civil rights, but in truth it is the opposite. It’s an anti-civil-rights movement. Not only because it is not very civil and doesn’t actually believe in rights (especially women’s rights and the right to free speech), but also because it embraces infantilisation rather than rejecting it. Every great social movement of the 20th century was at root a revolt against infantilisation. Suffragism was an uprising against society’s treatment of women as childlike creatures, against the idea that ‘Woman is emotional, and government by emotion quickly degenerates into injustice’. The anti-racist movement was a revolt against the bigoted belief that black people were beholden to ‘bestial passions’ that made them unfit for the cool deliberations of public life. Liberation from the prison of ‘immaturity’ was the great goal of progressive movements. The trans lobby could not be more different. This is an entirely self-infantilising movement. Words hurt us, the wrong pronouns wound us, disagreement makes us want to die – these are their warped rallying cries. Full article here.

The turning of the tide, in the UK at least?

Quote of The Day

Marxist theory calls for the use of specious arguments to break down the status quo. Climate change all too often provides the ammunition. Certainly for demonstrations of greed.

Finally . . . A Flashback

I found the notes for several old posts on my laptop. This one is from 1 November 2015, more than 7 years ago. It came as a bit of a shock to realise that transgender fanatics were already a concern back then. Since when things have got a good deal worse than as described in the article on freedom of speech at the end of this post:-

Cosas de España

The principal – and triumphalist – cheerleader for Catalan independence, President Mas, is reported to be opposed by 70% of voters in his attempt to keep his job. That said, his biggest worry is probably whether he’ll be the next arrestee in the scandal of the 3% paid to the Catalan government on just about everything contracted by it. Vamos a ver.

The Way of the World

Free speech: This treasure – for which many have died – is losing its lustre for those to whom being ‘judgmental’ in our multi-victim society is a hanging offence. See the end of this post for a Times columnist’s view on the latest sad manifestation of repression.


In their relentless quest to make women feel even worse about themselves, the admen have introduced a couple of new conditions. Or, rather, old conditions with new labels – belly bump and sensitive bladder. The latter, of course, is a euphemism for a leaky urethra. Last year it was dry ankles. Next year? Ugly nostril linings? Unhappy scalp?


It fooled me for 3 seconds – Rocanrol. How about you, forewarned as you were?

Finally . . . . .

The musical bard: Up in Barcelona, there’s been a much-lauded song and dance production of Much Ado About Nothing. I do hope this comes to Galicia, even if it is in Catalan.[It didn’t]

For new readers:– If you’ve landed here looking for info on Galicia or Pontevedra, try here. If you’re passing through Pontevedra on the Camino, you’ll find a guide to the city there.



Say what you like about Germaine Greer, it takes guts to criticise the transgender community, when they are backed so zealously by the “progressive” enforcers of the left.

What you can’t say, not accurately anyway, is that she’s got balls. I know this because I once sat across a sofa from her where she was holding forth to rapt feminists with her legs confidently apart — and she was not wearing knickers. Had she been a man in trousers it would have been “manspreading”; as it was, she was in a skirt and I got an eyeful.

So yes, Greer is fearless and she likes to shock. Anyway, the Ozzie crone — don’t worry, she has proudly called herself this and worse, including “a hag” — has caused a giant rumpus in politically correct circles by questioning Caitlyn Jenner’s status as the world’s favourite woman.

Jenner, a former Olympic gold medallist and stepfather to all those Kardashians, announced her gender transition only in the spring and has already made Glamour magazine’s list of “women of the year”. Greer wasn’t having it: “Just because you lop off your dick and then wear a dress doesn’t make you a fucking woman,” she snorted last week. “I’ve asked my doctor to give me long ears and liver spots and I’m going to wear a brown coat but that won’t turn me into a fucking cocker spaniel.”

Unkind? Yes. Unsayable? Well, isn’t it up to her? She was particularly riled because the students’ union women’s officer at Cardiff University had just whipped up a petition with a couple of thousand signatories calling for her to be banned from giving a campus lecture on the grounds of her alleged “transphobia”.

Controversy is catnip to Greer, so we needn’t worry too much about her health and wellbeing. She has been making waves since the publication of The Female Eunuch in 1970 — which, come to think of it, shared a similar interest in castration — and can look after herself. It’s the threat to freedom of speech that bothers me. British universities are becoming serial offenders in this regard, as ever following America’s lead.

Condoleezza Rice, who was in London giving a talk at Chatham House last week, has been barracked and dissed for years. Last year Rutgers University bowed to student protests over her role in the Iraq war and disinvited her as a guest speaker.

When she addressed Boston College in 2006 professors and students actually turned their backs on her. It was a breathtaking act of disrespect towards America’s first black female secretary of state. I’m guessing — from the photographs — that the audience was predominantly white.

The “coddling of the British mind”, to borrow a phrase about US campus wars, has arrived here. One cowed academic whispered to The Spectator magazine last week in reference to the Corbynmania sweeping through his faculty: “It’s like The Invasion of the Body Snatchers here.”

The ridiculous groupthink and fear of saying the wrong thing are not confined to universities. The row over the status of transgender women is just one manifestation of a wider assault on freedom of expression.

Greer said very specifically that people going through a sex change deserved to be supported. She is not in favour of banning anyone from doing anything, let alone stopping people causing offence.

The same isn’t true of her detractors, who hounded the left-wing writer Suzanne Moore off Twitter when she remarked that the ideal body shape for women appeared to be that of a “Brazilian transsexual”. When her friend Julie Burchill stepped up to defend her in her own inimitable style in The Observer, the newspaper took the article off the internet after protests. Now that’s censorship.

Newspapers have their own worries about freedom of expression this week when a new law comes into force that will in certain cases compel them to pay punitive damages to an injured party— on top of a libel payout.

This dual penalty will affect only those newspapers — and for the moment, I’m pleased to say, that’s every single one of them — that have refused to sign up to the Press Recognition Panel, a body set up last year by the government and created by royal charter in response to the Leveson inquiry.

It’s bad enough that newspapers will be fearful of exposing the truth, such as the extent of MPs’ expenses claims, with the threat of doubly sky-high legal bills hanging over them. But the new law is also explicitly designed to bully newspapers into accepting the statutory regulation of the press — which would end at a stroke 3 centuries of freedom from interference by politicians.

Who is more thin-skinned — transgender people (or, to be fair, those purporting to speak on their behalf) or politicians? It’s hard to say. I wouldn’t like to entrust our freedom of speech to either group.

Because the very thing that makes Greer so transgressive today — her utter lack of regard for causing offence — is what made her an exhilarating feminist when many women were still trying to find a voice. Should she have been banned from universities then?

Incidentally, all the brouhaha over Jenner may have been misplaced. It turns out that she wasn’t Glamour’s “woman of the year”, as Greer seemed to think, just one of many women on its list. And, plus ça change, the cover star for the group was America’s favourite ditsy blonde, Reese Witherspoon. She is letting it be known that she’s keen to film a third Legally Blonde movie, with Elle Woods becoming the first female president. I suppose that’s progress.


  1. “The first got 6 years in a luxury jail for politicos, while the second got 17 years in a place which certainly won’t be luxurious. The former has a pool, 2 squash courts, handball and basketball courts, a seven-a-side pitch and gymnasiums. The latter probably doesn’t.”

    Are you sure that the incendiary’s prison will be much worse? I looked into your wikipedia link to Soto and it says it is also the prison where workers suffer more attacks -after another one. Does not sound like a nice place. And weren’t Spanish prisons, in general, supposed to be softer/cushier on/for their inmates than jails/gaols in other countries (with perhaps the exception of Scandinavia&Netherlands)? Boris Becker was not impressed with the state of affairs at the institution he spent a few months in. The German press was full of horror stories about Britain’s penitentiary system (primitive, cruel, brutal…….so XIX century). BTW, thanks for the Tartessos pictures but forgive me for pointing out that these are not the best pictures of these findings on the internet. They do not do these findings justice.


  2. Agreed that the foto is poor. Taken from a local paper. Am sure you’re right there are better ones but it does the job.

    I wasn’t really making a comparison of jails across the world. I have no idea how they compare. My main point was that – as I think is well-known in Spain – the prison for politicos is rather cushy. I wonder who does the attacking on whom there.


  3. In Asia, soya bean curd is fermented before consumption, but not in Europe & North America. All those soya milk lattes have been feminising blokes for years, hence all the TG body dysphoria.

    Isoflavones have molecular weights and structures similar to the body’s natural steroid hormones, such as estrogen. The pattern of isoflavonoid excretion in the urine is similar to that of the body’s own estrogens. Therefore soybean isoflavones can act as estrogen mimics with between 1/50 and 1/100,000 the activity of the body’s own estrogen. It appears that isoflavones, like other phytoestrogens, possess both estrogenic and antiestrogenic activity, which together can strike a biological balance. Although isoflavones are not to be considered a complete replacement for estrogen replacement therapy (ERT), they have been shown to reduce the occurrence and severity of hot flashes and may lower the risk of heart disease and bone loss.

    Beware of those plastic bottles, as well.


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