by Humphrey Carter

W E will awake this morning to the second general strike in eight months in this country while Portugal follows suit and days of industrial action are taken in Italy and Greece in protest against the relevant governments' austerity measures.

Yesterday, while activists and union shop stewards lobbied hard to ensure a massive turnout in order to bring the country to a halt, the Partido Popular governments in Madrid and here in Palma simply said don't bother “it will not help us out of this crisis in fact all it will do is hit productivity.” Yesterday evening, just hours before the 24 strike began at midnight, one got the impression that today's protest could be a big one.
But, it firstly depends on the weather and also whether people can be bothered to use a bonus day off marching through Palma and other towns across the Balearics.

I know plenty of people who are angry, having to close their businesses and who are desperately worried about their future but few believe that general strikes are the answer. If we look at Greece, and to a lesser extent Italy, there is serious anger and that regularly spills over into extremely violent clashes.

Here in Spain, we have only had a few pockets of unrest and much of that has been in Catalonia where the battle for independence is also raging. I just don't feel the Spanish are up for a proper fight over this one. Let's see if they live up to all their talk today.