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Although I am by no means an expert in law, the persecution of the Catalan independence movement through all kinds of instruments, starting with the judiciary, has made many of us into modest interpreters of the disturbing situation which Catalonia endures: the persecution of the Catalan presidency to try to put an end, at whatever cost, to the most important civic-political movement that has emerged in recent years anywhere in Europe. The grotesque situation experienced this Thursday in the Spanish Supreme Court which met to consider the disqualification of president Quim Torra for a banner hung on the balcony of the Palau de la Generalitat constitutes the height of absurdity and reflects the complete absence of proportionality in Spanish justice which, at the same time, has been rejected in case after independence-process case that have crossed the Pyrenees and been heard in the different states of the European Union. Giving support to president Torra after what was seen this Thursday is almost an exercise in democratic health, no matter how many rebukes can be made of his management as the head of the Catalan government.

Debate, criticism and discrepancy on one policy or another, whether it is the pandemic, education or the economy, are always healthy. And democratically necessary. That's what politics is all about. It is not about justice removing presidents elected by Parliament or disrupting democratic life by taking shortcuts that have little of democracy about them. In a normal country this should be the position of both government and opposition, but in Catalonia there are many entrenched attitudes. It is a pity that, above all, the Catalan Socialists (PSC), but also Ciudadanos (Cs) and Popular Party (PP), have not understood that they do not contribute to making Spain a normal country by endorsing repression. On the contrary, taking this action leaves them without the ability to be a serious political alternative and to become part of post-election equations. Torra will probably be disqualified, because this and no other is the air that is breathed within the four walls of the Supreme Court and in the Spanish capital's media circles, much more attentive to the removal of the Catalan president than to questioning the president of Madrid, Isabel Díaz Ayuso, for her horrific management of the pandemic, which puts her at the forefront of regional governments which have responded worst to Covid-19.

But if the trial of president Torra is a story with an international dimension due to the disproportion between the sentence awarded to him and the actions that prompted it, the second piece of news that has broken in recent hours is that the group behind the motion of no confidence in Barça president Josep Maria Bartomeu and his board of directors have managed to gather the required number of signatures, those of 16,521 members. The final number they obtained is greater, with 20,731 members endorsing the no-confidence motion against Bartomeu and his board, although we still await the scrutiny to know how many irregular signatures there were. It is obvious that the figure achieved by the movers of the motion is stratospheric, since in the previous no-confidence motion in 2008 the number of members supporting it was 9,473, a little less than half. But in addition, the organizing group faced no end of impediments: from the difficulties caused by the pandemic in mobilizing members, to the absence of any matches in the stadium, the great driving force behind all the motions presented up till now.

This situation only makes two aspects stand out even more clearly: first, the outrage which exists in the Barça family at the management over recent years, which has been the great catalyst for members to take part in the no-confidence motion; and, secondly, that the misinformation from the large media groups, which have gone so far as to even conceal that the motion existed, choking any attempt at something as simple as explaining it to readers, is no longer enough to orient members to support one side or the other. Information today travels via so many highways that those powerful news centres are no longer the places that end up defining the context for the truth; and people, when they can, end up making use of their own freedom to choose.