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Monday, January 21, 2013 9:59 PM

Good News: 96 Percent of Spaniards Believe Political Corruption is "Very High"; Journalism Comments

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I have good news tonight from Spain:  96 Percent of Spaniards Believe Political Corruption is "Very High".

To untrained ears and eyes that might not sound like good news. However look at it this way: How much worse can it get?

Simple math suggests only 4%.

However, accounting for politicians on the take unwilling to admit corruption ever, it appears corruption sentiment has not only peaked but has crossed the threshold beyond mathematical infinity.

While pondering that thought, please consider the Financial Times article Party accounts scandal rocks Spanish PM.

Mariano Rajoy, Spain’s prime minister, has ordered an investigation into his own party’s accounts as he scrambles to distance himself from allegations that its former treasurer presided over a system of paying cash kickbacks to top officials.

Spain’s ruling Popular party has been rocked by the allegations of cash payments to party members, which follow prosecutors revealing that Luis Bárcenas, former treasurer of the party, amassed a fortune of as much as €22m in a Swiss bank account, prompting protests outside the PP’s central Madrid headquarters.

The escalating scandal threatens to damage the credibility of the Rajoy government at a time when it is pushing through a series of swingeing public spending cuts as unemployment stands at 25 per cent, and anger mounts at successive corruption cases within Spain’s political and business elite.

Ongoing high-profile corruption investigations include a case against Iñaki Urdangarin, son-in-law of King Juan Carlos, who was last year charged with embezzling millions of euros from charitable organisations. There are at least a further 200 open cases against politicians across Spain.

A recent poll conducted for the El País newspaper found 96 per cent of Spaniards believed political corruption in the country was “very high”.

Journalism Comments

The Financial Times is at least three days late in reporting this story. I have covered it via Google translates starting last Friday.

I did not have a poll to present then, but realistically speaking neither does the Financial Times now. Instead the Financial Times refers to El País.

Lovely. I link to my sources and the Financial Times does not. It is typical for all mainstream media to not properly credit sources (and the only way to do that is via links).

If you are going to cite a reference that is not generally understood, have the decency to post a link, especially if you include automatically inserted bullsheet like this whenever anyone goes to copy a snip from you:

"High quality global journalism requires investment. Please share this article with others using the link below, do not cut & paste the article. See our Ts&Cs and Copyright Policy for more detail. Email ftsales.support@ft.com to buy additional rights. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/f52b4244-63de-11e2-b92c-00144feab49a.html#ixzz2Ifhcg2PR"

There was not a damn thing on the Financial Times that was not lifted and reworded from somewhere else. Want Proof?

Please consider Crisis in Madrid Update; Plan "A" is Sgt. Schultz Defense, No Plan "B" Yet.

Yes corruption in Spain is very high. That we knew a long time ago. We now have a poll now to prove it.

96 percent belief in corruption is a story. However, it's not a story the Financial Times originated.

One of my pet peeves is not properly citing (with links) people you lift ideas from. The Financial Times, Reuters, Bloomberg, and most bloggers are all guilty. Many bloggers are guilty as well.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

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