Viernes, 21 de septiembre de 2012

Creo que Esperanza Aguirre tiene la misma concepción de un partido político que la que, en formulación ya clásica, acuñó Edmund Burke: un grupo unido para promover el interés nacional sobre la base de algunos principios particulares. Son precisamente los principios lo que distingue a un partido de una mera facción o de un grupo de interés. Sin principios un partido se convierte en un mero aparato de gestión del poder con lo que irremediablemente acaba degradándose.

A lo largo de su trayectoria política Esperanza Aguirre ha sido fiel a esa concepción burkeana de la política y del partido. Y ésta, a mi juicio, ha sido su contribución más original y más fecunda a la vida de nuestra democracia que se alumbró en la Transición.…  Seguir leyendo »

Como “un viejo jardín abandonado, un Jardín Umbrío” cubierto con “el largo murmullo de las hojas secas” (Valle Inclán), el paladar dialéctico de los españoles en torno a la cosa pública tiende a alimentarse casi en exclusiva con los secos ecos de las palabras que expresan meras adjetivaciones descalificadoras sobre las personas y posiciones ideológicas de los contendientes, sin que el rozar de la mente en esta umbría produzca más raciocinio que mortecinos brillos de ampulosos y omnicomprensivos lugares comunes, productos de una irreflexiva y con frecuencia borreguil corrección política, manantial de fluidos mentales inanes que, en decir del soneto LXVI de Shakespeare, producen el cansancio

Ante esta situación tan deprimente con que percibe una parte de los españoles la actividad de los políticos, quisiera yo aquí dar fachada a un texto que puede ser fructífero mantillo para que una zona central del Jardín Umbrío se vea desembarazada del exceso de hojarasca que le impide lucir en su más jugoso y eficaz esplendor.…  Seguir leyendo »

Throwing 10 percent of the world’s population into darkness is not a good way to advertise one’s “great power” credentials. India’s late-summer power outage, political dysfunction and slowing economic growth have engendered doubts among U.S. observers allayed only partly by the government’s recent announcement of economic reforms. For nearly a decade, India has represented Washington’s major strategic bet in Asia, a “natural ally” that was emerging as a strong, globally active and increasingly prosperous partner. Was this bet misguided?

We don’t think so. The short-run challenges to Indian power and progress in the relationship are daunting, and realism about the pace of both is in order.…  Seguir leyendo »

The latest casualty figures in the ancient war of man versus beast in Africa are in, and they look bad for both sides.

At least 25,000 elephants may have been slaughtered in Africa in 2011 — more than in any year since reporting began in 2002 — according to Kenneth Burnham, the statistician for Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants, an intergovernmental research agency.

Hundreds of humans have also died as a result of the elephant slaughter — not just from scattered maulings or tramplings, but from bullets fired by other humans fighting on the animals’ behalf.

Since the 1980s, under the mantle of conservation efforts and with funding from the European Union, governments, NGOs and private associations, African park guards have fought a rarely discussed low-level war against poachers.…  Seguir leyendo »

"No one murdered because of this image."

That was a recent headline from The Onion, the often hilarious parody newspaper.

The image in question is really not appropriate to describe with any specificity in a family newspaper. It's quite simply disgusting. And, suffice it to say, it leaves nothing to the imagination.

Four of "the most cherished figures from multiple religious faiths were depicted engaging in a lascivious sex act of considerable depravity," according to The Onion, and yet "no one was murdered, beaten or had their lives threatened, sources reported Thursday."

"Though some members of the Jewish, Christian, Hindu and Buddhist faiths were reportedly offended by the image, sources confirmed that upon seeing it, they simply shook their heads, rolled their eyes and continued on with their day."…  Seguir leyendo »

In his new memoir, “Interventions,” Kofi Annan jokes that “SG,” the abbreviation for his title as U.N. secretary general, carried a second meaning around the organization’s headquarters that more aptly described the role of the world’s top diplomat: scapegoat.

During a four-decade U.N. career, including 10 years in the top job, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate shouldered his share of blame for some of the world’s worst human rights calamities. As the undersecretary general for peacekeeping in the 1990s, Annan bore responsibility for U.N. missions in Bosnia and Rwanda, where peacekeeping forces failed to stem the slaughter of civilians under their watch.…  Seguir leyendo »

For months, Israel has threatened to strike Iran’s nuclear sites. The United States has urged restraint. If such an operation were launched, how might Washington react?

President Obama is enjoying a quiet dinner with Michelle, Sasha and Malia at the White House residence on a Thursday evening in October when he gets the call.

Two dozen Israeli fighter jets have just entered Jordanian airspace, apparently en route to Iran, chief of staff Jack Lew tells him. They will enter Iranian airspace, via Iraq, in approximately 85 minutes.

“Damn it,” Obama says under his breath. “Bibi told me he was going to hold off.”…  Seguir leyendo »