surinenglish

It's not new, it's old

New politics is really old politics. The most significant newcomer in this election campaign, Vox, is a party which, paradoxically, proposes taking a step back in time. Its offer is to go backwards in terms of rights that have been fought for and won, debates that have already been settled, constitutional architecture and Spain's place in Europe and therefore the world. Not to mention going backwards in terms of what we understand as democracy and even of how we have seen Spain since 1978. What's new, therefore, is not what it proposes, which takes us back more than four decades, but how it proposes it.

Vox is carrying out an underground campaign in which, save in counted exceptions, avoids public debate, confrontation of ideas and, above all, traditional media. Until now, the media was the main target of political parties, but that has changed. Not because through the media you don't reach the general public, but because traditional media comes with a filter called journalism. And journalism can be a problem if an entire political agenda is based on myths, half-truths and total lies.

If the pillars of an electoral programme are based on ideas such as violence against women is not a problem in Spain, that immigrants have advantages when it comes to social benefits, that immigration itself is all down to a plan whipped up by a Jewish magnate, that there is a security problem that requires every citizen in Spain to carry a firearm or that the Constitution allows for the suppression of the devolved powers of the autonomous regions, that programme has no legs to stand on. The only way to get the messsage across, therefore, is to avoid it being held up against the truth. That is, to avoid journalism. For that reason and none other, Vox prefers what it calls direct contact via social media, where there is no filter whatsoever and lies can run freely.

Some say that the best antidote for Vox is not to talk about them, as they form a group that lives off what people say about them every day, how people comment on their bright ideas, even if it's to criticise them. According to that theory, this article will only serve to strengthen them. Let's take that risk, even if it's just this once.

Their latest bright idea is that there are reasons to prohibit political parties that don't renounce Marxism. They ought to explain why to exercise a right to political participation you should have to explicitly reject the contributions Marx made to the history of thought and not those of Nietzche, Heidegger, Hegel or Tales de Mileto. Above all, in a democracy like Spain's, so different in its generosity from those of the rest of Europe to the point of allowing those who haven't even renounced the political legacy of a dictator to have the run of the mill.