Councillor for Mijas Bill Anderson writes a satirical commentary on the campaign trail in Spain in the lead-up to local elections

With just a few weeks to go to the local elections in Spain (28th May), politicians of all colours and wannabe politicians are donning their party-coloured underpants and hitting the streets. This is nothing new, and in some ways, the opposition parties have the upper hand in the campaigning frenzy.

The parties who are currently in government have to convince the people that they have in fact done a good job, that they have met their 2019 election promises and that their municipality is better now than it was when they took power in the last elections. For those who have done their job well, this shouldn’t be hard: a simple tick list.

This is what we promised, tick, tick, and this has all been done. If only life were so simple! Instead, they have to justify why they haven’t done what they promised and embellish the truth in murky monochrome colours which they hope will fool the electorate into believing quite the opposite of the reality.

Then there are the failed politicians who have reinvented themselves under the umbrella of a new “project” which will transform the lives of their municipality. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against new “projects” but it does feel often like used car salesmen ( or women)  persuading you that this rust bucket is in fact a classic car and, firstly is worth it, and secondly that it will perform way beyond its original specs.

Then come the wannabe politicians. More new “projects”.  This is how the Spaniards describe the formation of a new political party, as it sounds better and less political than saying a new political party. Who knows? Maybe new blood and new ideas are not a bad thing, but it feels like downloading an untested  Version 1.0 of a brand new computer programme that could either be sensational or on the other hand, might be full of bugs and mess up your whole IT system.

Don’t get me wrong. Like it or not, I am also on the campaign trail and I struggle with the level of activity and energy which goes into it. I know I am getting on a bit, but the struggle is not physical, but rather philosophical. It all feels like the advert which keeps popping up on your Brower, or at each interval in the TV programmes which is designed to make to feel that even if you haven’t tried the product, you know all about it, and it will either make you hate it or want to try it.

But you know what? People’s problems don’t just go away because there is a single-minded drive by all political parties, however, they disguise themselves,  towards the elections. If I could choose, which I can’t, to focus on the campaigning or to keep trying to solve people’s problems, I would choose the latter, and maybe if the same energy went into this as goes into the campaigning, many more problems would be solved.

Read more:  Bill Anderson: IT’S ALL ABOUT NUMBERS

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