The Spanish seem to be in apologetic mood lately. I wonder what happened to them? It's been many years since I was there but back then, there were bullfights and drinking and smoking and Flamenco dancing and all sorts going on. As they lose their national identity and all their money to the EU, they're turning into the same lot of subservient, grovelling, guilt-ridden sheep we have over here.
Majorca have decided to apologise for the Spanish Inquisition even though it was controlled by Rome and even though it happened so far in the past that it would take a professional geneaologist to work out if anyone alive was even related to an Inquisitor now. They have apologised to the Jews, who were persecuted by the Inquisition, but not to the Muslims and Protestants who were equally persecuted. That's going to set off a lot of protests once the fundies get a hold of it. So why did they dredge this ancient history up again? Hardly anyone knows anything about the Spanish Inquisition beyond the Monty Python sketch these days. And why only the Jews?
The Israel-based group that came up with the proposal for the ceremony lauded the event as "an important gesture of reconciliation".
So a Jewish group demanded an apology for something that happened to Jews and to others around 400 years ago. They demanded it of people who could not even know if their personal family history included anyone who was guilty of this (except Senor de Torquemada, who nobody dares ask). And they got their apology! Wow!
The Israeli group called it a 'gesture of reconciliation'. Really? Israel was still stewing over the Catholic fundies of four centuries ago? Those people can certainly hold a grudge.
England will have to watch its step because if they're hell-bent on this new game of time-lapse apology, the Cameroid will be on his knees begging forgiveness before you can say 18th July 1290. Then he'll send them a bag of money and move on to apologising to cows for leather jackets and hamburgers. He's good at apologising, if nothing else. By the end of this Parliament he will have apologised for the dreadful environmental impact of the inventions of fire and the wheel, and given someone a bag of money as compensation.
These things are all in the past. Nobody alive today was involved, neither as perpetrator nor as victim. The apology is futile.
Today though, it's Spain's turn in the apology seat. Aside from the Inquisition, they are keen to make amends for the Spanish Acquisition, a game whereby they sell you land, let you build a house on it, declare it illegal, throw you out and bulldoze it. Naturally they won't be parting with any money over this. They have a different scenario in mind - one in which other people give them money. Much like the previous game, in fact, but this time they promise not to fleece quite so many as before, or at least, not quite so blatantly.
However, Mr Blanco maintained that of the 850,000 Britons currently living in Spain, only one per cent were affected by the scandal.
'One per cent' doesn't sound like much until you realise it's one per cent of 850,000, which is 8,500 people. Buying a house is a risky business anywhere, at any time. You night be unable to pay the mortgage and the bank will take your house. What you don't expect to have is one chance in a hundred that the government will let you build it and then spontaneously steal it.
No grovelling apology here, just a 'well, we won't do it any more if anyone's watching' sort-of promise. Most of those affected are still alive but apologising to the living invites compensation claims.
Maybe in a few hundred years...