In the film Focus (2015), a veteran thug – played by Will Smith – explains to a novice – Margot Robbie – the key to any deception: «It’s all about distraction and concentration. The mind is slow and cannot do many things at once. Tap it here, and take it from there.”
If our government knows anything, it’s a hoax, so it has perfected two focus techniques to narrow that range to perfection. First, distraction; For example, we have been talking about the King Emeritus for three days, to hide the fact that both the Bank of Spain and the European Commission have completely dismantled his economic discourse. This week has been emeritus, but other weeks are consumer guards, extreme rights, haze or Franco’s wild card, anything to distract employees.
the second technique, concentration; It involves putting all our attention on one point so that we forget what is really important. The great teacher of this technique is Employment Minister Yolanda Diaz, and the examples of her skill are endless. most used hub Regarding the last crisis in February 2013 – just the turning point of this one – and not the period from 2008 to February 2013, when we were really facing a financial crisis. By focusing specifically on that point, the minister speaks of the fact that 5 million were unemployed along with Rajoy, pointing to him as the culprit of this dramatic situation.
If we exclude that point of concentration we see the reality: the PSOE government put 2,258,000 Spaniards out of work between 2008 and 2011, and it was Fatima Banez’s labor reform in 2012 that reversed the crisis and increased employment. gave a good portion. What is lost can be recovered with Rodriguez Zapatero. Between February 2013 – “hub» By Yolanda Díaz and the turning point of the financial crisis – and in May 2018, Spain with the Popular Party government created 2,765,000 jobs. As Yolanda Díaz insists, Rajoy was not the culprit but the solution, and the millions of Spaniards who got their jobs back remember them perfectly.
The same deception technique – concentration –, although this time seasoned with several coarse lies, forms the basis of the deception about the self-employed which Minister Yolanda Diaz summarized in a tweet written last week:
« 11,000 million euros is what we have allocated to save thousands of self-employed jobs from 2020 onwards. 11 million euros is what the Rajoy government allocated between 2012 and 2018.
Statistics that show us who supported the self-employed and who left them to their fate.
First, the figures are not true. The 224M program that collects “financial benefits for cessation of activity” concluded between 2012 and 2018 with an annual average of 35 million euros, totaling 245 million euros, not 11 as the minister says.
This item was concluded in 2021 with only 714.8 million euros, as a good part of the cost of ERTE and the benefits of cessation of self-employment activity was paid from European funds through the Sure Instrument, as it did was the rest of the European country; This is the second lie, the aid was European.
Third, the Rajoy government did not leave the self-employed to their fate: it allocated more than 3,000 million euros for a flat rate and about 42,000 million euros in the Supplier Payment Fund to pay the outstanding bills left by Zapatero’s government, thereby Bankruptcy of thousands of SMEs and freelancers to survive. Data that negates the minister:
• Between 2008 and 2011, with the socialist government, 222,000 SMEs closed down and 250,000 freelancers lost their businesses.
• Between 2012 and 2018, with the PP government, 138,000 new companies were created and 190,000 freelancers opened new businesses.
Fourth, by putting hub In aiding the self-employed, this takes away from what is really important: Why has such an enormous amount of support become necessary for a group of self-employed workers in 2020 and 2021? And the answer leaves the minister very bad: on March 24, 2020, Nadia Calvino said that “the government does not want Spain to stop.” In the early hours of Sunday, March 29, just 5 days later, Yolanda Díaz, through an extraordinary royal decree, shut down all non-essential economic activity, causing major losses to millions of self-employed workers and the bankruptcy of thousands. Happened. from them.
Ministers who now defend a hearing process refused to listen to the social agents who were genuinely responsible for job creation, who warned of the disastrous consequences for our economy to be shut down by decree, without compensation and The companies were forced to bear all the costs. CEOE, Cepyme and ATA were very clear: “If they shut down your government and, at the same time, they stop you from firing, they’re forcing you to shut down. If you don’t have income then you cannot pay.
Certainly those responsible for the 107,000 companies that closed in 2020, or the hundreds of thousands of self-employed who had to apply for benefits for the cessation of activity in both 2020 and 2021, preferred to be able to work rather than receive aid. would have done. be able to survive while they saw their businesses go bankrupt.
Let’s not fall into the minister’s scandal: the “focus” may not be on the amount allocated to help this group, but on the fact that his carelessness and incompetence has made the self-employed poor. Some data from the latest barometer of self-employment status for May 2022:
• In the two years of the pandemic, 1,450,000 self-employed people have not received any assistance or benefits.
• Two out of three self-employed workers have not recovered to their pre-Covid level of their occupation.
• One in three is still pessimistic about its activity and expects it to decline in the coming months.
• About 40% of the self-employed are in default and 70% have been affected by the growth of electricity.
Benjamin Franklin wrote “The best means of doing good to the poor is not to give them alms, but to enable them to live without receiving it.” I believe freelancers share this 100%; They don’t want a government that subsidizes them, but a government that lets them work, lowers their tax burden, lowers bureaucratic constraints and contributes to the modernization of our business and productive fabric. for their access to European funds. Contrary to what this government is doing, which is more determined to “connect the poor”.
- Xavier Writer he is an economist
Yolanda Diaz: Connecting the Poor