Politically things are calm in Spain, bordering on apathetic, very generally speaking. There exist the old ruling blocs, PP
and PSOE on one side - Spain is essentially a two party state - and the more radical liberal and libertarian youth and younger persons who do not belong to the ruling elite.
The apathy stems from the fact that neither group has any vision or solution for Spain to the future. The ruling elite does not have any special vision other than to fiddle with social issues (such as immigration, abortion etc.) and to ensure the supremacy of their friends and benefactors.
There is no special distinction made on behalf of the people whether PP
or PSOE is in power, both are considered corrupt and out of touch with the needs of the people they're ostensibly representing. There might be something to that, but I'm not entirely convinced myself, except in the case of corruption: I think neither party is free of corruption.
On the corruption index you mention, I have some serious reservations, since it has managed to completely miss out on some of the most blatant corruption found in Europe, such as in Iceland where the former prime minister is in fact under impeachment, the entire financial system rotten to the core and incestiously intermarried with both the judicial system and the executive branch of government in ways we can only dream of in Spain.
It is so bad that in all cases of financial corruption coming to the supreme court, at least one judge has found himself to be incompetent of hearing the case because of personal relations or business relations with the indicted party. The index gives Iceland pretty much a clean bill of health.
Honestly, regarding corruption in Spain, neither major party is particularly immune but I'll grant you that PP
has the more overt cases. However, despite perceived corruption there isn't that much of it, there is however a great chance of corrupted people getting indicted and imprisoned.
As to the matter of Garzón, well he is certainly a proud left-liberal activist (in the literal sense of the word) judge on one hand, on the other he does love being in the spotlight even more. He has been using his political agenda to an effective way to stir up a bees nest and I think that's exactly what he wanted. He never saw himself going anywhere in the judicial system, he'd never be appointed to the Supreme court or the Constitutional court by either party - but this way he can go out with a bang, with full publicity and righteousness and even be perceived as a sort of a martyr for "the cause".
I would be relatively hesitant to feel very sorry for him, since I think this is precisely what he wants. It's a win-win situation for him to be perceived to be a champion of the left and enemy of "the system".
And that's in my opinion the core of the problem, the apathy of the electorate and the lack of vision. All to easily people think that it's a system set against them, that they're "all" corrupt and "all" the same. That there is no point in even trying to affect that system, thus the only way against it is with protests or even violent protests (depending on how far on the anarchist scale one finds one self) yet there are no answers within the 15-M movement, in case they'd actually achieve something and a "democracy" according to their thinking would be established.
They are in that sense just as bad as the "system", the politicians they're fighting. They represent nothing except some vague idea of a perfect libertarian democracy and yet they do represent in a general way most people under 40 in the country.
As for replacing boards and heads of institutions, a new government always starts with a clean slate here. From investigative commissions to the state TV
and radio. That's just business as usual and nothing peculiar about that.
There's one thing that I'm keenly aware of that's different now than before and I've never seen it, but there is a growing distrust and resentment towards the EU here - something which the so-called core nations of the Union (e.g. Germany) should be aware of in general and the EU itself in particular.
Regardless, there's no need to panic just because the PP
won in a landslide - at least not while Rajoy is president of the government and the PP
. He is of the core of the intellectual elite and is nothing if not predictable and rather unassuming as leaders go. He will not rock the boat.