Gabriel García Márquez. Without him our solitude would be greater

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

I have a special admiration for him. He is a universal master of literary art. But I also profess him a special gratitude because he helped me to promote culture and art when I was Director-General of UNESCO and, like good teachers, to know how to look.

I remember one day in Havana, when I visited the International School of Film and Television. Upon my arrival, he was listening to the argument of a film that a stunned Colombian student exposed him: the protagonist watched for hours on what was happening in the house across from but was convinced that it could only cross the street when it rained so much that could do it through water. Finally one day it rained so much that could cross ... but then realized that what she was really interested to know who was "the woman across the street", i.e., herself ... In concluding his presentation, Gabriel said he liked it but he recommended to read the work of one Argentinean writer that had a similar argument. Annoyed, the future filmmaker said: "I assure you that I have not plagiarized!” Gabo replied with a broad grin: “I have no doubt, but you have to think that according to English, there are only a dozen variations of drama. And the English are exaggerated: there are really only two: love and death”.

Another day in Cartagena de Indias, near his home in a small bar he used to go, I asked Gabriel: “Where do you get these fabulous stories, these unusual characters, these remote places?” He answered slowly: "Well, I come here and take note of what customers say. Listening inspire me exorbitant profiles and happenings that I have to often "reduce" what happens in real life”...

Dear “Gabriel": You told me one day at UNESCO that the word "eternity” perturbed you extremely "because it is too long "...

Your thoughts, your messages, your characters will remain many centuries because they are now history. You are already some of the few humans who do not die, are just absent , that the silver trail of your work will  always remain ( ... is always the same as eternal?, because both terms mean there is no end ... but "always" is less emphatic, is a simpler "endless")...

I want reaffirm my deep appreciation for the support you and Carlos Fuentes provided me to organize the “Summit of Thought” in Latin America ... to the implementation of the “Demos " program... and to pay the  first  public  tribute   to  Rigoberta   Menchú  when  some   obstinate
"Ladinos” still did not understand why an Indian was awarded with the Nobel Prize.

Gabriel García Márquez, excellent journalist, was a great writer because before he had been a great storyteller. Only those who describe well can write better.

An exceptional person has died. But he will remain in each of us. He will stay in Macondo so we can all go and see him. It was “his village." Now he is forever (!), of the whole humanity.

Ukraine: the solution is always democracy, not brute force

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

There was –if neoliberals of the G7, G8, G20 recognize it or not- a democratically elected president.

This president –as it often happens! did not behave very democratically. And a popular uprising began. Up to here all is right.

What happens is that suddenly appeared armed to the teeth insurgents, acting with extreme violence and a very suspicious confrontation strategy. By brute force regained power lost at the polls.

The European Union, that should have reacted immediately, finished as spectator (satisfied because there are too many interests, especially related to the numerous pipelines) and blessed the new government not taking into account the “procedures" used. Everything is fair, because the fuels they receive worth a lot...

The Russian minority in this part of Ukraine does not count as well as the non-Russian of Crimea. With the Ottoman Crimea, Russian and then "given" to Ukraine by Khrushchev, Putin has warned not to play ... and now there is a real threat of military confrontation.

They must return to the polls. A well prepared election throughout Ukraine under the supervision of the United Nations should be presented -as it is seen, the "plutocratic groups" are not useful to fix things but exclusively complicating them- whose result could be a federation or confederation which would ensure a democratic self-government to respond to the cultural and political life of Ukrainians as a whole diversity.

The unity in diversity would have been solved and would have given a splendid lesson to those who have always subordinated to markets the key dimensions from a historical, ethnic and cultural point of view...

Immigration: the solution is in the sustainable, human and endogenous development

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

What terrible things we are consenting!

The "democratic" Europe, Europe of the human rights -described in 2000 in one of the most precise and precious “Charters”- the “developed” and prosperous Europe ... looking the other way. Europe that a few years ago was an example of cooperation, solidarity, support ... is now reticent, even reaching xenophobia. The Europe of the markets has forgotten the "democratic principles" that were so lucidly enshrined in the Constitution of UNESCO at the end of the great Second War.

The Europe of tax havens, of short-termism, of production delocalization, of greed of the wealthiest ... and, close to it, obedient countries that a few years ago seemed  to understand that the refoundation of a multilateral democratic System was crucial... but finally they knelt down under the immense pressure of the great neoliberal powers.

Spain, which caused so much immigration in times of the Real Estate "bubble" (without regularization by those who considered it only as “workforce”)  has the bright idea now of placing sharper objects on fences! And ask for 45 million Euros to Europe to raise them and make them more hurtful and inaccessible with the “razor wires”.

This is not the solution. The solution is development; a great development plan. I remember those years when the United Nations program for development, with the words "com-partir (to  share)" and "co-operate", expected that the world could progressively achieve a peaceful coexistence focused on the equal dignity for all human beings

The World Bank has a surname:  “for cooperation and development”.  But everything changed and cooperation was replaced by exploitation and democracy by plutocracy, ethical values by stock-markets and an economy of global sustainable human development by an economy of speculation, productive delocalization and war (I never tire repeating that every day more than 3 billion dollars are spent on weapons and military expenditure while there are thousands of people starving, most of them children from one to five years).

Look into the eyes of those who manage to "jump" into Europe through Ceuta and Melilla. Or to those trying to enter through Lampedusa ... They are not people who have chosen , in the present world situation, “to take a trip across Europe”. If they try to access the EU is because they are starving, because they live in extreme poverty, because they survive in inhuman conditions.

Minister: do not ask 45 million Euros to close even more entries. Spain and the most prosperous countries of Europe must give development aid up to "all human beings equal in dignity" in order not being forced to leave their country. Oh, and do not say "it is because there is no money"! It was already said by the richest of the Earth in 2000, when the United Nations proposed the Millennium Development Goals. "There is no money." There was no money for AIDS (8,000 million dollars a year, the same amount spent on weapons in 2-3 days).  There was no money for a wide world food plan (40-60 billion dollars, which is invested in half a month, as maximum, in security ...of 20% of humanity that is living in the prosperous neighborhood of global village).

If it is true that, as just announced OXFAM, 85 persons accumulate wealth at the equivalent of half of humanity (3,300 million of human beings) ... there is no doubt that the solution is not asking for 45 million Euros but strengthen the means of peaceful coexistence worldwide. Give up at once the ridiculous groups G6, G7, G8, G20 ... and join, unite all States, especially those who still have some democratic conviction, to offer less somber horizons to all young people of the world.

I also recommend reading the Earth Charter, the Preamble and Article 1 of the Constitution of UNESCO ... instead of trusting solely on the reports of economic institutions, and especially of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, that has removed the reference to development from its "surname".

Especially when they have given millions of Euros for the bank recover, and because  at the beginning they built Europe through the roof, with a monetary Union without previous economic and political union, inequalities widen rather than reducing.

The xenophobic Europe which does not implement its excellent Chart of Human Rights of year 2000 and does not provide relevant development grants, should not have the symbol in Spain of “razor fences” but the promotion of human development, starting with those countries living in absolute hopelessness.

European elections:

Thursday, April 3, 2014

those who are elected should have as priority objectives, among others, the following:

-Change of election procedures so that the next elections will result in a truly representative, prestigious and effective Parliament. It cannot be accepted as 'democratic' the Parliamentarians who have reached their seats with very low percentages of citizen participation.

-Political and economic union: it cannot remain a Community dependent on economic guidelines led by great neoliberal consortiums. The monetary union built the roof of the house first. It is essential to correct this mistake.

-Foster a democratic multilateralism refounding the United Nations System, and firmly rejecting the nonsense of governance by plutocratic groups (G7, G8...G20).

-Prompt actions in favor of an autonomous security without linkages and current NATO conditions.

-Immediate nuclear disarmament, promoting a worldwide outcry from the
European Union.

-Increase employment for all in a new working framework, which is not guided by group interests but by social justice.

-Encourage R+D+i, without cuts, in order to obtain a reliable competitiveness.

-Provide equity and the transition from subjects to citizens, from spectators to actors.

-Transition from an economy of speculation, productive delocalization and war to an economy of global sustainable development.

-Prosecute tax evasion, a lack of unacceptable in solidarity, that represents taking steps to eliminate, once and for all, the tax havens.

-Encourage the establishment of worldwide priorities, especially those related to food, water, health and respect to environment. Europeans must implement measures to reduce carbon anhydride and promote, through a renewed commitment every day, a human and sustainable development at all levels, avoiding in this way -and not with fences and razor wire- a forced immigration caused by extreme poverty and hunger.

-Bring out without pause by word and cry, the genocide of thousands of people, mostly children from 1-5 years who die in abandonment and into oblivion, while investing almost 4,000 million dollars in arms and military expenditures.

-Adopt all appropriate measures of intergenerational responsibility, especially those relating to potentially irreversible processes, in order to assure the quality to the habitability of Earth for the future generations.

-Strengthening of democracy at personal, local, national, regional and worldwide levels, encouraging the adoption by United Nations, of the Universal Declaration of Democracy in the unique context that will be possible the great historic turning point from force to the coming word.

-Education should be based on the experience of teachers and principles established by well accredited organizations in education instead of taking into account the suggestions of organizations specialized in other areas such as economics and finance.

If these matters and alike were approached, the Euro Parliament could have an important role not only in the continental future but worldwide.