C'mon… What's going on in Spain with the seniors?

Maybe because I belong to the category of senior and I never talk about it, today I want to deal with a complex issue that mixes great problems with great opportunities.

If you have little time, I invite you to watch this video-summary in a minute.

At what age are professionals considered seniors?

I remember playing with friends when I was 12 years old . Suddenly, a woman appeared, grandmother or aunt of one of the children, and said she was 50 years old . In my teenage eyes, that woman of 50 was an old woman. She dressed like an old lady., her hair, already gray and dyed of that violet color, collected, added 20 years more. Her hands were rough, with a lot of wrinkles, a lot of life...

Today, and after my 55, when I see someone who looks the same as that woman, it turns out he's got a little more of 80 years old . We've changed. Our nutrition, the advancement of preventive medicine, healthy sports habits, the pursuit of permanent happiness, the meditation, travel... Everything helps body and mind age more and more slowly. In terms of productivity, our "lifespan" is extended.

Anyway I consider myself senior, but not because of my age, because of my experience. I have been in the world of work since the 16. My first payroll was at the agency BBDO. And the best thing is not the experience added in years, but in experiences, in failures, success, joys, penalties, achievements. Those are the best wrinkles. And believe me if I tell you I've never been as good as I am now.. I still have a lot of things to be done (yes, purpose obliges), but professionally I don't think I've ever come to a place like today's.

For me, the "seniority" is an attitude, supported by an experience, it's not about years added. And I admit without problems that I learn, and a lot, from people much younger than me.

Many cultures revere seniors. Spain, unfortunately, it's an exception

In Japan, seniors enjoy respect and admiration. Japan's famous longevity is not just the result of physical aspects such as its hygiene care, their varied and healthy nutrition and constant medical checkups. It also comes from cultural factors, that make them respect the elderly as great sources of wisdom, experience and knowledge.

Even U.S and pretty much all America, Africa and Asia surrender cult to middle-aged, even though their life expectancy is somewhat shorter than Japan or European.

However, as if it were the Gala village of Asterix, Spain represents a regrettable exception in respect for the maturescence, using a term from my admired Laura Rosillo.

This week I noticed that one of the main Spanish companies has planned to pre-retire in a few days 5.000 senior employees over the age of 53 years old .

The message is terrible, it is perceived that at 53 we are already labor useless

It seems that the acquired knowledge is useless, the experience, multiple cumulative formations, achievements. But neither is what's more important to me, the desire to keep learning, to gain more skills, mentoring those who start, to keep going on.

The stupid contradiction

the young man knows the rules and the old exceptions

Thanks to Salvador Martinez, cultural change consultant

When organizations that are supposed to be exemplary and wealth-creating encourage ageism (age discrimination), society must react. Among other things, because it is expected that in 2030, one of each 3 people will have more than 55 years and one in five will have more than 64 years old .

The contradiction or paradox is as follows: On the one hand, our life expectancy is growing due to advances in health, nutrition and other healthy habits. On the other hand, companies are increasingly removing professionals at younger ages… How can society digest such a paradox?

Several reasons to enhance senior talent

Many seniors already know what works and what doesn't, we're digitized to the teeth and it doesn't hurt to give away knowledge, ideas, and participate in multiple altruistic initiatives. Many companies replace these "old" 53 years by juniors of 23 thinking it will be the same. And it's not the same.. It's just different.. We need freshness, energy and youth initiative, but someone has to supervise it, direct it, mentor it. And who better than the one who has been wrong many times and has discovered so many others the correct exit from the labyrinth.

But there are more reasons that underpin the necessary momentum towards this growing group. In the must-read article Age management: Generational diversity as a business strategy, of the expert Laura Rosillo, there are very important reasons for entrepreneurs to change their "mindset" regarding seniors:

  • Laura refers to the often ignoring the social "conquest" that entails the progressive increase in life expectancy and years of healthy and productive living. This is a more qualitative improvement, it's not just living longer, is living with greater physical and mental health.
  • When it comes to the younger ones, I like her idea of complementary generations, non-adverse, non-substitutes. Together they can provide much more effective solutions to the organization.
  • She mentions the impossibility of carrying out generational relays as before. The birthfall, job precariousness, revolution 4.0., make it difficult. Thus, you have to change the prism and understand thatall +50 are now better prepared and more healthy than ever before.
  • I can't agree more when Laura breaks generational stereotypes. "There are people born already in the internet age who are digital illiterate or there are Babyboomers fully digitized".
  • When we mature we become individualizing and become unique stories and experiences. Laura claims that diversity is not therefore generational, but interpersonal.
  • Companies need both emerging talent and mature talent to ensure innovation in on going basis. It is difficult to achieve without this communion.
  • Actually life cycles have lengthened , and with it the formative periods. I speak for myself, I'm pursuing a degree of Humanities, attending conferences, enrolling in courses, MOOCs... why should I stop? Knowledge is dynamic.
  • The fact that pre-digital generations are not skilled in this digital matter is more due to an attitude issue than of ability. So, it has a solution.
  • Finally, picking up the ideal of the organizational clover of Charles Handy, seniors can be located in any of the three parts of the clover: permanent workforce, outsourced staff and freelances by project. From payroll to billing.

So please take note, Spanish companies. We are many seniors and we will continue to fight, of the good, without refusing to change, without giving up training constantly, without giving up being a part of clover. Go ahead with golden workers!

Stock Photos from Smileus / Shutterstock

From obliged to beat motivated to fight # EKHuelva18 #MarcaPersonal (the story)

The younger may not remember the great Luis Arribas Castro (Don Pollo), which put the voice to the Cadena Ser in Barcelona back in the 80. That Barcelona hospital, Franco still strong heritage, contestataria, dangerous, something anarchic, closed sea. But very human. I had the honor to see live how Arribas Castro gave off every day program with a phrase I will never forget:

The city is a million things

The real heartbeat of the city are its people. Barcelona was not in the world, as it is from 1992. But it was in our hearts. Between 1975, year of Franco's death, and 1990, in fifteen years, FC Barcelona only won a league championship. And many years was in the middle and lower part of the table. But the fans cheered like today does with his team fan Recre or Athletic Club. They were not obliged to win, why they were motivated to fight, to play well.

The case Aviles.

In May 2017 I had occasion to visit the city of Aviles, In asturias. It was the hand of my dear colleague and staff brander Elena Arnaiz. Elena, revelation for me 2017, It took us a few to that small town and organized a small one-day conference that brought -Attention- to 300 people. I talked about it a year ago in the post Jobseekers, better go for the 80 and forget 20 and also in The best of 2017 Personal Branding. And Elena summed it up in a masterful post title Trace in the liquid space.

There I met my soul mates Eva Collado Durán and Fran Segarra (Get in Value) and my colleagues soul Andrés Pérez Ortega, Isabel Iglesias, Victor Candel, the magic of Nilton Navarro and Elena own, was a smash hit. Not only for the number of people who attended. The quality of its people, the desire, the proximity, the amount of friends emerged from that moment, of which we connected all watching their progress, listening to their stories. It was an event 100% human. He had a thirst for knowledge, but above all he had wanted to host, saluting, squeezing hands, give kisses, distribute hugs. a rush.

Unprecedented success in Spain. The Mysterious Case of Space Knowmads Huelva 2018 (alias # EKHuelva18)

In the Iberian antipode of Aviles is the old city of Huelva, la latina Onuba. You may think that Huelva has nothing to do with Aviles. Politically, historical and geographical, no. Social and human aspect, yes, absolutely.

But let's see, How has Huelva fill a large theater with about 500 people have even danced to the rhythm of I will survive Encouraged by a pregnant woman 8 and a half months?

Let me tell you something that looks amazing: I do not remember events personal brand like this.

The secret is to restore human connection

Ignition of the project comes almost a year ago as an initiative and sponsorship of the Andalusian public foundation Andalucía Emprende, from Cajasol Foundation and exciting endeavor David Barreda, since this January 2018 person revelation of the year and “Pattern” of personal brand is placed. His biography is impressive, and it is the reflection that leave their writings.

I think the key to this was not to make a massive event, It was doing something nice.

The importance of marking own profile

The speakers were able, among all, give a hug to almost all attendees, a kiss, a conversation, a photography. A “while that follow you and you liked more in person”. Normal, the person-to-person dialogue will always exceed the text addressed to a collective. When I know I dare to be imperfect, to show my vulnerable side, laughing, to cry.

#EKHuelva18 personal brand

Photo: Manuel Morillo. Final Space Knowmads Huelva 18

Thank you, a word that falls short

All the people I met in Huelva have their own profile, human, close leader. Huelva is not the fresón, Recre, ham or shrimp, are your people. Heartfelt thanks to all that you attended the ceremony. Thanks to the onubenses Helen Gomez Ruano and David Barreda. Thanks also to those who came from very close and gave soul to EKHuelva18, as Meme Romero, Silvia Saucedo, Seve Izquierdo, Rocío Martín, to those who came from afar as Eva Añón, Claudio Inacio, Alex Duran, my fellow stage, Eva Collado Durán, Elena Arnaiz, Andrés Pérez Ortega, Own David Barreda, Enrique Cejudo (onubense, by the way), Patricia Vázquez, Adela de Mora, the entire organization. A more special thanks to the entire team of the foundation Andalucía Emprende, This is Cajasol Foundation, (keynote speech of its president Antonio Pulido), the City of Huelva and Andalusian. What you have done is unprecedented. You are the small village of Asterix stories that refuses to be a people of characterless, boring and cloned citizens. pure humanity. contributes, you importáis, and a lot. Do not change, please.

PD: Would you know what we mean in the Knowmads Space? Attentive to Blog David Barreda.

header image: Manuel Morillo (big)


What is the trigger for your career?

Why did you study what you studied? Why did you start in this business your first job? When I ask about the trigger for career people often go blank.

The usual answer, when it emerges, I am "do not know". “I studied it because it's what I did best”. O "it was the first company that accepted me as a candidate". I do not believe it. There is always a trigger, even if it is deposited in our subconscious.

If you do not like the word detonator, some military, you can change it to "catalyst" or “driving”. But in any case there is always something that drives us to do what we do.

When weapons your story, the trigger is a key element. I usually distinguish the idealistic impulse momentum channeler.

The idealistic impulse

the idealist, as the name suggests, It is often based on a childhood dream: I will doctor to save lives, I'll cop to kill "bad guys", I will be like my father trader, I will be president of my country so that no one goes hungry and all live better. Yes sounds utopian, But does a child wants to be a politician can be president? Or a nurse may be a surgeon? Children think big. It's a shame that first ambition is lost as we mature.

The channeler impulse is to take you to the first firm decision on the type of studies to study or to take you to your first payroll in an organization.

For example, my idealistic impulse was composed of early passion for photography, music and nonverbal forms of communication, but especially by the admiration that made me see the British physicist Stephen Hawking communicate using a primary computer system. Hawking could give up talking, moving his legs, but not to communicate.

Years later my Utopian thoughts, on 1993, BT (British Telecom) launched a corporate ad with music by Pink Floyd and insight Hawking I should be written on the forehead of our leaders:

For millions of years, mankind lived just like the animals. Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination. We learned to talk and we learned to listen. Speech has allowed the communication of ideas, enabling human beings to work together to build the impossible. Mankind’s greatest achievements have come about by talking, and its greatest failures by not talking. It doesn’t have to be like this. Our greatest hopes could become reality in the future. With the technology at our disposal, the possibilities are unbounded. All we need to do is make sure we keep talking.

For millions of years, humanity lived like animals. Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination. We learned to speak and learned to listen. Speech has allowed the communication of ideas, making it easier for humans to work together to build the impossible. The greatest achievements of mankind have occurred when speaking; its greatest failures by not doing so. It should not be like that. Our greatest hopes could become reality in the future. With technology at our disposal, the possibilities are limitless. All we have to do is make sure we keep the dialogue.

El momentum plumber

detonating personal brand

Paco and Elena

The channeler impulse is the action plan. Once you've decided which of your childhood fantasies might see the light, you need to activate the necessary springs to reality.

In my case, It was the couple that you see in this photograph. my uncles, should run the year 1977 (I with 15 years old ) when this photograph was taken. They used to move in a vintage bike that call today, a NSU of which I think there are few specimens in the world. They were an unusual couple for the time: light-hearted way of dressing, the hairstyle. I do not know if it was the perfect match, but it was a good model in which inspiration. I soon learned that they were advertising. Elena had a fleeting passage by advertising, but Paco Miret was and remains one of the great creative advertising.

Paco worked at Tiempo BBDO, one of the great Spanish agencies and one of the top 10 world. They needed an assistant to the art studio. And that was me. Known photographic techniques (in my house I always developing equipment) and what fascinated me about the design.

My first payroll is January 1979, in Tiempo BBDO. 5.000 pesetas per month (about 30 €). Had 16 years old . Professional category: buttons. Today, with long boring 55, I'm still advertising, although I have changed the way to strengthen brands. I am now convinced that should be done through people. That's why I work in personal branding.

You look like a fantasy childhood or youth can determine your career and build your first passions.

I like to remember the words of psychologist Carl Jung:

I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to be

I'll ask again what is your trigger?

Header image shutterstock.com

And you? Have you already found your superpowers? #TEDxLleida16

Superpowers? What is this about?

The 30 September I get a call from someone with superpowers. Ricard Pons, good friend and personal brander, and other non-minor roles. We often talk occasionally, and us when you can. I proposed for a TEDx rapporteur. I dont believe it. Because I? ¡Oysters! It seems to be serious! Shortly after I talk to of Pau Samo, his great colleague, good friend and coordinator TEDxLleida. Paul confirms.

Damn it! The plot thickens. I propose the date is not going well. consultation with Eva and Fran, those responsible for the commitment he had acquired for 11 November, scheduled for TED. Salvados! The other commitment is flexible on dates. The 12 October is already announced my participation in the web of TEDxLleida. Less than a month. There is no turning back. Or if. Timely flu. Isn't it?. I throw. With two. In addition, prepare it can be fun. I'm going there. OK… And what I mean? I say that the audience is very wide, unspecialized. Come on, that the public could be my mother. A challenge.

looking topic

Talk about personal branding as if at a congress will not work. But I will have seen hundreds of TED talks over my life. And there is a pattern. There is always an inspiring idea. There is almost always a personal story related to that idea. I look inside my. Why I'm here? Do I have a vision? Yes! Is that! I help to draw futures. That is my vision for many years. And now the question: What led me to define that vision? Clear! Working with people. I went to work for “big” brands and businesses work “little” brands. And no color. From big to small. Small are human, they are persons, real, you durable, authentic. In fact, small would not exist without large. This gets pretty. But I need something more. What makes us different businesses and individuals? Here! I have it. And begins “V”. Values ​​are.

Small Data: the power of people

Small Data: the power of people. Genial. I have already title. Surely I'm not the first person who comes up with it from “Small Data”. Indeed. I look at Google. Ricard looks in Google. share links. But there is nothing to fear. My approach is different, speaking of humanizing, to provide corporate brands and businesses soul. And that comes only with the power of people. People and their superpowers. Without being aware, people have something, a driver, that makes us superheroes… What will? Values ​​are.

Superheroes no longer spend layer

Isn't it?. This idea of ​​a guy who flies or climbs and carries layer we leave for film and comics. In real life superheroes do not wear layer. And often we do not know they are. The world is full of people who have overcome obstacles unthinkable. ordinary people. They live in your ladder. Among friends. Among your relatives, your colleagues, your customers… They live within you. They are more like Woody Allen than Arnold Schwarzenegger. And so, What has allowed them to lift your head and pull forward? Values ​​are.

Companies do not yet know the extent of that driver in people

It is very green. Few companies have understood the power of his people beyond their basic skills. Still, in the SXXI, call “employees” their staff. RAE. Employee = Used, used, Spent. So we are not going anywhere. Where is our humanity? But back to the heart of the matter. Companies have people, and those people have super powers. I know. You think I'm like a goat. And you're not going bad at all.

You are seconds away from knowing what the hell are the superpowers. And how they can help companies to multiply their strength connection with its markets. I leave you with the video Small Data: The power of people. It contains a small personal story. I am very sure that when you're finished to see your own back grope in search of a layer. Look no, your values.

Happy week!


Knowvacaciones, Break the knowmads

Do people who work in various collaborative projects we rentals?

The answer is yes, unequivocally. Although possibly be a different holiday, something deconstructed, stages and with many times of total disconnection without breaking the thread. They are holidays for knowmads.


To know what a knowmad I recommend, If you have not already read, the book of Raquel Roca Knowmads, future workers, but forward mode, Knowmad is a neologism that combines the words know (know) and nomad (nomadic) and it has its raison d'être in innovation and flexibility. The knowledge worker is the worker of the future.

According to Raquel Roca, "A kind of professional-more sophisticated and involves the complete evolution- almost every other job profiles, as an autonomous, freelance, entrepreneur or self-employed, to which it is added characteristics (como soft skills, learning capacity…) that go far beyond a regime or form of financing. Anyone, from CEO or entrepreneur to the frontline employee, It can be knowmad. And no passing fad because it will be the kind of professional more to grow and develop in the near future, which basically because it meets all the conditions for working with requirements calling for new times, and therefore they will also be requiring companies ".

Managing the holidays

With patience, of course, without losing his head and letting our inner circle understand that at certain times of the day or week as bread need to approach a place with WIFI to resolve matters that can not wait (too).

There is no doubt that the holidays are a time of rest, But just peace that separates us from the usual hustle inspires creativity, new ideas and at least in my case- solutions to ongoing projects. Will we escape the inspiration?

San Skype

I hope you are not angry with me very religious, but telecommuting tools like Skype or Hangout, como Google Drive, or collaborative projects manager Slack have joined the phone, mail, WhatsApp save us life ..., as we should be avoided in person at meetings and allow us to continue our pace off with only small interventions to address specific issues.

Winding down

Those who are subscribers to online news services, subscribe to videos, blogs or we track certain people, what we usually do is reduce "noise" for a few days and find the information we need when we need it.

cursed August

I admit I feel some envy for those who can make your vacation when your mind is requested. That happens in every country in the world except in Spain. In Spain we have the misfortune that is not well seen to vacation in June, July, September ... despite being summer months.

That is a problem, as for example- This year I happened to leave the city 22 July and has been busy. As if she had no right to make the holidays when my personal logistics allows me.

Knowmads but not so rare

At knowmads we also like to take this time to read, for siestas, contemplate landscapes, embobarnos with ocean waves, do sport, take a walk, stay with friends, taste new dishes, to write, meet with the family ...

We are not so rare. Only happens we need to follow "on" if you do not want some interesting projects go to ruin and we are complicated with a lap of holiday.

Many people new purposes arise around holiday. The knowmads we do 365 days a year.

Are you one of us?

In this excellent article Social You you will know if you have DNA Knowmad. If so sure you're already considering the knowmads holidays.

Working holidays photography by Shutterstock.com

Managing our personal communication

If we accept that personal branding is the footprint we leave on others, We should distinguish between our area of ​​public communication (we know us and know others in our environment), our blind area (others know it and we do not) and our secret area (we know, others do not). Only in this way we will improve our personal communication strategy.

Johari window

Possibly you know this useful tool in his day who designed psychologists Joseph Luft and Harrington Ingham, designed to help us better understand our relationship with ourselves and with others.

Managing our personal communication / Personal Branding

Wikimedia Commons

In the top of the window available to others and at the bottom the unavailable information is handled others.

Arena (public area) It's what we know about ourselves and others too. It is our public area, but it does not represent the totality of our brand, because we need to know more information about us (blind spot, blind point) and since we need to include this information they booked for us (façade the secret area). The unknown area will not talk, are information that might lie in our unconscious and appear, or not- someday.

We need more sand. We can not afford to ignore what others know about us, and that ceases to be blind area must resort to such effective action as underused: ask for feedback.

How do we ask for feedback?

Message: to have a 360 no need to launch 20 complex questions. I propose three, only three, which will give us all the information we need for our blind area pass to public (known to us):

  1. DefineMe in three words
  2. Do you think I do especially well
  3. What do you think could improve

Isn't it?, They are not dichotomous yes or no, They are open, which will analyze results somewhat longer, but also richer.

Public: We do not need to interview 400 people, with long boring 20 It will suffice. But it would be interesting that belong to different areas of our lives: 5 friends, 5 family, 5 classmates and 5 coworkers. As an extra bonus we could also choose to 5 higher, is a valuable information.

Medium: There are several platforms that will help us manage this information. The important thing is that it is anonymous to encourage them to answer without fear. I personally like a lot Google Forms, a highly customizable and free online quiz Google also has application for Chrome and smartphone. I have also used Survey Monkey, perhaps more “friendly” in design and better suited to smartphone versions. But in the market there are many more applications, as Survio, PoolDaddy… At the base of the post I include a link with 10 more important.

managing secrets

We still need more sand. The feedback has helped us to know each other better, but now we need to do something to let others know us a little better. Consider our façado or secret area: What we have not told us that we could benefit as professionals -and as people-? We need to answer that. It is obvious that we will always have a secret kept, but certain information concerning our hobbies, passions, reading habits, Travel, Restaurants or altruistic we can reinforce our brand positioning.

I often use the example of which is prepared for a 1/2 marathon (or full marathon) What information is extracted from there? planning, control, discipline, culture of effort, Personal self-improvement. And if we are poets weekend? creativity, passion, And if we are cooks weekend? teamwork, rigor, empathy, sociability… And if we recognize our Linkedin CV or extract that we have laid a firm? sincerity, proximity, learning culture, overcoming…

The thin fine line between our personal lives of our professional life is becoming increasingly blurred, some information is better to move them to the public sphere to win authenticity and proximity. The choice is ours. No need to confess our childhood pranks, there would be nothing distinctive, it is weighing whether we release ballast or let the balloon go falling.

To know more:

Jane's Trunk: 10 steps to manage and leverage feedback 360

Carlos Guerra: 10 free tools for online surveys

Yellow wall and window image by shutterstock.com

Something dies in the soul… and Cris is gone

Hasta siempre, Cris, essence of life

Los Del Rio became famous for many songs, but certainly for his portrayal of “The good bye” (something dies in the soul). So far he had not internalized the full meaning, but unfortunately Cris is gone, and that makes me set me on two specific verses of the song:

Something dies in the soul, when a friend goes,
And it leaves a mark that can not be deleted.

The boat is small when away at sea,
And when is lost great is the loneliness.

Cris is gone, and leaves us without the flame of life: organizer, joyful, passionate, perfect mother, perfect wife, perfect friend, culer even in difficult times, music lover and bailoteo, a good game of canasta, lover of the pleasures of good food, a good book (I was able to re-read 5 Sometimes if he liked), a coffee with cigarette and morning press… life lover.

Cancer does not distinguish the good from the bad people. Cris is gone shortly before his 50, with many outstanding things, many trips, many talk shows… I write this with tears in my eyes but smiles returning me to the great moments that we've been close to her will always remember.

Sometimes I think that God takes people who have absorbed so much essence of life, as if we have a limit, a quota of excellent moments that can not be exceeded. Jorge, itself, Carlos and Jorge junior will miss, more than anyone in this world, but they can never say they did not have a wife and mother who gave all, absolutely everything.

Finally, I leave one of the musical pieces Cris asked me again and again to put in the mystical moments: The trip to Ithaca, this visionary text of the Greek poet Cavafy Konstandinos, translated by Carles Riba and brilliantly versioning by Lluis Llach.

Cris is gone. Good trip, Cris!

#11S2013 Communication and contracomunicación: swords raised


Echoes of the past Via Catalan from 11 last September have exceeded covers the following week in the press. The War figures continues with the usual pace: those who are upset with the human chain have low numbers (400.000 people according to the interior minister, Catalan Jorge Fernández Díaz). Instead, those who would like to see Catalonia as a new European state initially welcomed the figure 1.500.000 people now, gigafoto as to the Via Catalana is becoming clear, It is talking about a mobilization of nearly 2.000.000 of people, which would mean a milestone without too many precedents.

Image: unique Sabadell

Image: unique Sabadell

With swords aloft, cabinets communication policy one side or the other are devoting great attention to find the best way to neutralize or maximize the effect of human chain. There are all kinds of contaminants, but perhaps the most notorious is the one involving far-right groups shouting "Catalonia is Spain" or "Puta Catalonia" in its irruption in the Blanquerna bookshop in Madrid. contaminants also appear in the side independence, the mindless classic burning flags etc.

The role of the press is key to to feed or neutralize this mobilization. In the state media would "The country"On one side and"ABC”, “The reason" for the other. “The world”, for free, always bet on the holder to help generate more controversy, go against one or against other. Televisions reinforce its role as pro or against, and so we have some more neutral as Mediaset (Four and Tele5) and others ruling as TVE or the group A3Media. in Catalonia, TV3, audience leader, He has given maximum coverage to the Via Catalana, and he has also done Grupo Godo to a lesser extent.

Rather than as a citizen Catalan me very striking it is the obsession of many media responsible for making this mobilization Artur Mas. Forgive me Mr.. But, but I would have liked to have the drawing power. Mr. But he did not read clearly the manifestation of 11S 2012 in Barcelona, he thought that much of that million and a half people were potential voters and their electoral crashed in advance. Mr. But it had nothing to do with the Via Catalana. As much, will be able to influence media coverage of the event, a little more.

Via Catalana has been a transverse movement an important part of Catalan civil society, a movement whose main fuel has a double source:

  1. The anticatalanismo visceral part of Spanish society, manifested by many of its political representatives in the form of economic pressure, explosive statements, constitutional breastplates, boycotts etc..
  2. The civil movements Catalan as ANC, all Culture and many others, they have achieved more respect and credibility that the political class.

In the communication war we are living, Catalunya has to lose, as it faces the world alone and with little support. Commissioner Almunia, few months ago I posed as something possible the automatic inclusion of Catalunya in the EU should become independent, He is championing the contrary speech since they have stretched ears.

However, messages have appeared by social networks that, not coming political color coated, are becoming excellent ammunition Catalunya: the letter of Catalan tennis, Jordi Évole article about the silent majority, Article “Catalonia” Andreu Buenafuente, Ona Carbonell demonstrations, Olympic champion… In social networks, communication that smells party or media does not get the viral interest from netizens. But everything comes from human beings, citizens, opinion leaders nonpolitical, it constitutes "the talk". And do not forget the power of a well planned conversation. Already said the introduction of Manifesto Cluetrain (1999): markets are conversations.

If the governments of both sides do not analyze in detail the transversality This phenomenon, their communication cabinets shoot salvos, little more. A exfalangista economist insinuating that you have to bombard Barcelona does not scare the Catalans, on the contrary, adds new followers to get out of Spain.

In Madrid I have been expelled twice from a taxi by phone speak Catalan ... with my daughter! Who feeds that ignorance, that pollution?. Communication is everything, and if politicians are willing to avoid hatred, they can get. On the contrary, Via Catalana will become more and bigger.

Smokescreens, euphemisms, and esonotocas, The summer often 13

A few days before the election, President opponents accuse him of sexual abuse of a minor who was visiting the White House. The strategy to avoid the scandal is raising a smokescreen: invent a war with a country virtually unknown and not very important to most of the American people, Albania.

It sounds? Why not, This is the plot of the movie "Wag the dog” (Smokescreen) of 1997, Barry Levinson directed and written by David Mamet and Hilary Henkin.

This Hispanic political summer has surprised us with one of the biggest smokescreen known to our species: The drama of the rock. The story is very well orchestrated:

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

Mission: Government prevent wear of accumulated cases of Barcenas, Gurtel and management crisis especially poorly resolved issues comunicativos-.

Strategy: Direct the attention of the Spaniards to another issue that will emotionally affect their patriotic sense. Create a threat to the interests of Spain.

Proposal: A conflict around the Rock of Gibraltar, British sovereignty under the Treaty of Utrecht (1713), a gift that made the Bourbons to the English Crown to invade Barcelona without too many casualties.

Background: In his day, Aznar managed to hang rojigualdas thousands of flags on balconies thanks to the defense of a stone called "Perejil" which had been occupied by hordes of Morocco. The unit of Spain was in danger. The action was successful at all levels, and he ended with a "take" island style "SWAT".

The perfect excuse. Spain's government needed a trigger, and I was fortunate to face when the 24 and 25 July this year, Rock authorities released water concrete blocks with the idea of ​​creating an artificial reef, putting obstacles to the fishermen of La Línea de la Concepción and Algeciras.

The execution: Two days later Spain exaggerated intensified customs control at the gate, which it caused huge queues of several hours that the Government justifies affirming that these records are their obligation, because the Rock is not part of the Schengen area and so UK and Gibraltar have strongly protested. As they say in Italy, "We made it" (and we Bundled).

The reaction: The communication manual began by page 1. The pro-government media (The reason, ABC, RTVE, Antena 3 ...) They gave the advance and warned of a new threat to the unity and sovereignty of Spain. Then the matter has occupied front pages nationwide, culminating an excellent and well-orchestrated communication strategy "Wag the Dog". It is true that not all means the same treatment given to the news, The Sixth and the world have remained faithful to the subject Barcenas, and perhaps also the "separatist" Catalan press.

Political communication cabinets typically work with three major formats to avoid attention on an issue. By order of effectiveness:

The smokescreen, already mentioned, It is the great tool:

  1. Is Matrix, a recreation of the real world to the world's people do not see the misery in which they live.
  2. en EEUU, the same day Monica Lewinsky He declared before the grand jury in the Supreme Court began bombing Afghanistan and Sudan .
  3. The Government of PSOE He was found 29 April 2011 with a devastating statistic 3 weeks of regional elections: the historical record 4.9 million unemployed. In this case, the Government did not create curtains of smoke but took advantage of the inertia of two important facts to shelter behind the curtain: the semifinal of the Champions between Madrid and Barcelona 27 April that captured all the headlines until next week, and the Royal Wedding between William and Kate 29 of April. Luck? Why not, but we must seize.
  4. In Catalonia, the right to decide, human chain for independence and Barca leave the page 2 of Google all the rough issues such as the case Millet, espionage cases following recordings in the restaurant "La Camargue", bicefalia of a PSC whose leader is constantly challenged by his fellow party ...

euphemistically, that old friend. Some examples:

  1. The "rivulets of fuel” Rajoy, when he was deputy prime minister, referring to ecological Prestige oil tanker disaster
  2. additional tax"By raising taxes
  3. outdoor mobility"By flight of young people abroad
  4. Loan"For ransom
  5. temporary slowdown” (ZP) by crises
  6. temporary cessation of cohabitation"Divorce (in the royal house)
  7. Ticket moderator sanitario"Per euro per prescription (Government)
  8. And Pearl: “exceptional measures to encourage the taxation of undeclared income"Tax amnesty

The "it does not touch", a tool booming. Examples:

  1. Perhaps the king of "esonotoca" was once Jordi Pujol, a master of evasion communicative. He did it with art, his "això not touch" always appeared when the president wanted to discuss the exhibition was inaugurated ago 2 minutes and the complex issue of domestic policy. Conversely, his successor, Artur Mas, He is an expert in the art of giving the face.
  2. Today we have the "President plasma”, Don Mariano, that has come to irritate the press with their constant non-appearances and installing custom TV (plasma) in an adjacent room for journalists (so do not bother with inconvenient questions)

Either way, Summers always find news context to help ease tensions of various governments. When summer brings a few fires, Few accidents in traffic and few drowned in the sea, political gale is secured. This summer 13 We remember him for that piece of stone (English call it "The Rock”) we call Gibraltar, a curtain of thick smoke.

Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner autoinmola

I do not usually third-party items rebloguear, but “Do not cry for me Argentina. Weeps for you” economist Xavier Sala i Martín It is required reading to learn the party and family interests that lie behind the decision to expropriate 51% Repsol. There I leave you with this pearl, which actually comes from a speech at the radio station RAC1 last 17 of April.

Foto: Flickr

Do not cry for me Argentina. Weeps for you

Let's see if we understand each other. It is true that the Argentine neo-nationalism has played a role in the expropriation of Repsol, It is true that the violence raging naciolismo appears whenever the government needs camouflaging serious problems (and the Argentine government is no exception) and it is true that the nationalization will harm, essentially, a Argentina (and here the only thing that has hit the nail is the mayor of Buenos Aires, Mauricio Macri, which it seems to be the only sensible politician nationwide): He asked me yesterday if public who had shot himself in the foot was Froilan, King Juan Carlos and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner. The answer is… All three at once!

All this is true, but I think that Argentine citizens should begin to see that their political leaders not only use nationalist populism to win their sympathies, they are corrupt thieves who steal the wealth of their country. YPF nationalization has nothing to do with the energy needs of the people but by the incompetence of Dona Cristina, the desire to hide a nefarious management and, above all, with the corruption of its environment… and her son Maximo.

The story begins between 1992 and 1999, when the Peronist government of Carlos Menem (the same party of Kirchner) decides to privatize YPF because of the huge amount of losses of the company. It was a time when the company was mismanaged (like almost all public companies around the world) and the price of oil was around 15 dollars a barrel. The Spanish company Repsol, then directed by Alfonso Cortina, YPF bought the government of Menem (I repeat, the same party that Kirchner).

1999 It was a time when "Spain went well". Remember him? It was the Spain of pelotazo, New-rich slicked giving lessons worldwide management and heads of government who smoked cigars with his feet on the table. That arrogance was etched in the minds of many Latin Americans who have waited years to collect their moral debts. To all dog has its San Martin (not your Sala i Martín, which it is a different phenomenon) and it seems that Spain has come time to pay the humiliation to which he treated the citizens of Latin America.

Having said that, and accepting the arrogance of the nouveau riche Spanish, the truth is that REPSOL paid (I repeat, PAYMENT) the price asked by the ruinous government company: 15.000 millions of dollars. The merger was exemplary to the point that the Financial Times awarded the annual prize for the best REPSOL merger of year.

In addition to these 15.000 initial million, REPSOL has invested a total of 20.000 million between 1999 and 2012, including some 3.200 million 2011. 20.000 million 12 years is not a small investment, whatever it says the Argentina President. In fact, one of the results of these investments has been the discovery of Vaca Muerta deposits that can give extraordinary economic results despite yet to see the quality of oil deposited there.

In 2007, Antoni Brufau and already in front of the oil, President Nestor Kirchner asked REPSOL an Argentine group became part of the company. It was the Petersen family group of Enrique Eskenazi. The Eskenazi family was a family of the high bourgeoisie of Santa Cruz, region that had been presided (oh! chance!) by Nestor Kirchner, before he became president of Argentina. In fact, Enrique Eskenazi was a close friend of Don Nestor, so intimate that he had funded election campaigns that brought him to power. That is to say, President Kirchner forced into 2007 REPSOL to accept an Argentine partner, casually, He was a close friend of all life and that he had some political favors. Antoni Brufau accepted because I knew it is always good to have local investors with political connections. It is good that insiders will signal the existence of amber lights before they become red. Why he accepted the Eskenazi family has first 15% and then him 25% of the company.

But there was a small problem: the Eskenazi were the richest people in Santa Cruz, but one thing is that your children will wander through the village in gaudy red Ferraris or luxury chuleen by the hottest clubs in the area and something else very different is to buy the 25% a company worth tens of millions of dollars. The Eskenazi were not so rich!

How does the family friend buy Kirchner 25% REPSOL-YPF? Thus forcing YPF to lend him the money! I repeat, Nestor Kirchner REPSOL forces to lend money to a family friend buy it for the 25% REPSOL. And how will such a family millionaire pay that amount? Well, with the dividends of own REPSOL. That is to say, REPSOL, Kirchner's government and the Petersen family group Eskenazi sign a contract (deposited with the Security Exchange Commission of New York) REPSOL forcing to give the 25% of its capital to the Eskenazi family and agrees to pay it back with dividends REPSOL. To ensure that REPSOL can collect that “credit” (or perhaps we should call it a racketeering), REPSOL is obliged to distribute as dividends the 90% its benefits.

That is to say, when Mrs. Kirchner accuses REPSOL not to allocate a greater share of its profits to investment and oil exploration, does not explain that her husband (I repeat, HER HUSBAND) REPSOL had forced to use the 90% of the profits to pay dividends for your friends (I repeat, HIS FRIENDS) from appropriating 25% REPSOL when they had a dollar to buy such number of shares(*).

But it does not end here. Mr. Enrique Eskenazi placed their children in the company (in particular, Sebastian puts his son as vice president) and instead of acting as the local partner playing the role of alerting the amber lights before they appear red lights, it behaves like a mobster who recently incompetent to defend the interests of the company that runs.

Little by little, REPSOL see who has gotten in trouble and that local partners play more in favor of politicians who have placed them in the charge for the company they represent and will soon appear nationalization rumors. They are the last days 2011 and REPSOL has discovered deposits potentially millionaires Vaca Muerta. The rest of the story is already known. Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, Remote Control by economist Axel Kicillof(**), Marxist scholar, mentor of the time Campora (association created by Kirchner) and close friend of the son of the president, Máximo Fernández Kirchner, announces the expropriation of 51% REPSOL-YPF. "Interestingly," the 51% of the shares expropriated come from 57% which is owned by the Spanish partners. exactly 0% comes from 25% with Argentine partners, Kirchner's Dad friends, the Eskenazi family (and also expropriates 0% US investment fund owner of 17%… and remember that spends three days after Mrs. Cristina met with Obama “negotiate” the topic).

The big problem of the expropriation of REPSOL is that the government's response to Spain, chaired by Don Mariano Rajoy, It will necessarily be weak. Spain is an impoverished country with very little bargaining power and no ability to pressure their (theoretical) allies: the European Union and the United States. Both one and the other have less desire to help their Spanish "partners" that spending accounts for the arrogant attitude of the Spanish presidents (Aznar and Zapatero) not long ago they gave them leccioncillas when things went well. And I say that's the big problem of Spain for two reasons. The first is that Argentine leaders, seeing the weak reaction of Spain, They will grow your ego at the same rate decreased when Thatcher's England were humiliated in their stupid Falklands campaign and his inflated ego will increase your thirst or expropriating their anti-Spanish REPSOL revenge: they seriously think of expropriating other Spanish companies such as Telefónica, Santander or BBVA. We'll see.

The second reason why the spectacle of YPF is a problem for Spain is that other Latin American governments, also wounded by the Spanish neocolonialist arrogance of the Nineties, they are watching. And the desire for revenge Argentine can spread to the rest of the continent. We also have to wait to see how it evolves.

In the meantime, the crisis has turned Spain into an economic body that will induce scavengers around the world feed their spoils: the Argentine government will continue its cocky threats, the rest of Latin America humiliated not be left behind, But that is not all: Chinese oil companies try to exploit the deposits leaving REPSOL and Argentina can not afford to explore, American banks are going to fill the void that leave Santander and European multinationals, yes, yes, the European partners and brothers, They will be on the lookout, attentive to keep any part of the business that the incompetence of the Spanish leaders leave without defending.

(*) Everyone knows that, for more Dona Cristina now make lagrimita fall when she talks about her late husband, Mr. Kirchner had spent years living separate and parallel lives, very much in the direction of the kings of Spain, where the monarch is to hunt elephants (o eran elefantas?) Botswana while his wife is going to look for Easter eggs to Greece and when she learns of the accident it, It takes five days to give a visit… of 20 minutes!

(**) Axel Kicillof is the radical paleomarxista has managed to outshine the minister Amado Boudou, who he tried to ban books or Samuelson Sachs in Argentine universities as "neoliberal". Kicillof professional life, a teacher 41 years old , It has been a sniper at the University of Buenos Aires, where he majored in history of economic thought. Al doctorar said Keynes was a radical thinker distorted by bourgeois analysis. For him, Stiglitz and Krugman are almost as liberal as Mankiw or Barro. Come now! Close friend Max Kirchner and ideologue of expropriation. With these intellectual leaders directing the counter kirchneriana one should say, Although the episode of YPF is a sign of Spain has problems, the major problem is not Spain but Argentina!