Cheap ugg boots saleCatalonia, one of the most prosperous and cosmopolitan corners of Spain, is hardly united in its desire for independence. But even if Madrid succeeds in snuffing out the current secessionist gambit, the movement for the right to self-determination in the region will hardly disappear. “Don't let them steal our republic in backroom deals,” said Mireia Boya Busquet, a leader of a leftist Catalan pro-independence party, told reporters. “Bring it to the streets. Where it started, and will win, despite everything.”
Catalan aspirations are deep-seated, anchored in the region's distinct history and cultural identity. But the momentum for independence catalyzed only in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, as Catalans saw their robust region being dragged down by a cratering Spanish economy. Catalan officials say the region still pays about $12 billion more in taxes each year to Madrid than it gets back.
These frustrations are not exclusive to Catalonia.Cheap uggs sale A number of fledgling secessionist or autonomy movements in other parts of Europe, from Lombardy in Italy to Flanders in Belgium to Scotland or even London in Britain, are grounded in the belief that their regional interests are not being served by the national politicians who call the shots. Over the past year, we've tended to think of nationalism in the West in the context of angry, right-wing populist movements, fueled by disaffection with elites and hostility to immigrants. But another trend to watch ought to be the impatient regionalism of more metropolitan parts of Europe, frustrated by the backward politics of their nation-states.
“For Spain and Italy it is clear: the mixture of austerity, corruption and political sclerosis at the center has limited the reality of regional democracy,” Guardian columnist Paul Mason wrote. “It has pushed autonomous regions such as Catalonia towards independence and places such as Lombardy and Veneto” — two wealthy Italian regions which held nonbinding autonomy referendums this week — “towards seeking fiscal autonomy from an essentially dysfunctional central state.”
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