‘Robin Hood’ mayor promises more food raids in Andalucia

LAST UPDATED: 9 Aug, 2012 @ 17:01
37
SHARE
‘Robin Hood’ mayor promises more food raids in Andalucia

A MAYOR who has led hundreds of workers to steal food from Spanish supermarkets ‘so that families can eat’ has vowed that more raids will take place.

Juan Manuel Sanchez Gordillo, mayor of Marinaleda Town Hall in Sevilla, led hundreds of members of the Andalucian Union of Workers to steal food from stores in Sevilla and Cadiz on Tuesday.

His aim was to give out the food, stolen from Carrefour and Mercadona supermarkets, to the homeless.

The Robin Hood-style raids were carried out – Gordillo explained – because ‘someone has to do something so that families can eat’

Government minister, Jorge Fernandez Diaz has issued a warrant for Gordillo’s arrest after his followers took around a dozen shopping carts filled with sugar, oil, milk and other foods from each store.

Gordillo also compared Jorge Fernandez Diaz and the Partido Popular’s actions to the ‘state terrorism, of the the Franco regime’.

Yesterday two people were arrested in relation to the raids.

37 COMMENTS

The Olive Press are not responsible and do not moderate individual comments before they are posted. Anyone who uses racist, sexist, homophobic or xenophobic language or hate speech will be blocked.
  1. This man, apart from being a mayor, also has a seat in the opposition benches in Parliament. He is a teacher of Spanish history. He claims the “expropriation” of staple foods from two supermarkets was a symbolic gesture, a wake up call, to the government that its own people are going hungry, and that they cannot continue with the current policy of cutting away at the less favoured in society.

    It is theft and not to be applauded, condoned or immitated, but before they did it they called the press and then went ahead without firearms, with their faces uncovered, and they were not taking the food for themselves. More of a political press stunt than anything else you could say but still taking something that did not belong to them.

    He certainly got the press coverage he wanted, its been all over.

  2. I, like I suppose many other foreigners, watched the ‘food grab’ take place on local TV and was left perplexed at the inactivity of the Guardia Civil and other agents who appeared reluctant to take any definitive action. Two arrests?. Pathetic.

    I also saw one of these raiders physically assault a member of staff who was simply doing her job and leaving her in tears on the sidewalk. Sr Gordillo, as mayor, (and his cohorts) should be ashamed of himself for leading such anarchy.

    And who does he think is going to end up paying for an increase in the stores’ shrinkage??. That’s right, me and you through increased prices. Well done, Andalucian union of Workers.

  3. A classic example of civil disobedience. They announced the intent openly to the media. They violated the law without any intent to ‘escape’ or mitigate the consequences. Now they can accept the legal consequences (whatever those may be, if any) of what they have done. The consequences are the price paid for making the political statement.

    It doesn’t seem like a strong message or a very effective way to show it. However, there is nothing morally ‘wrong’ with this type of civil disobedience. Unless you are an authoritarian and you believe that ‘wrong’ is the equivalent of ‘illegal.’ The Spanish, in general, are not. Far less than most Europeans (or Australians). So it is not surprising that the Guardia Civil stood by and allowed it to happen before making any arrests.

    brian – “And who does he think is going to end up paying for an increase in the stores’ shrinkage??. That’s right, me and you through increased prices. Well done, Andalucian union of Workers.”

    Most shrinkage is actually a result of miscounting inventory rather than actual loss of the product. And estimated shrinkage is actually calculated into profits/loss (because most products that are lost are actually lost in bulk, in transit, before store inventory, rather than stolen from a store). What this means is that if you are actually paying a price hike for shrinkage you, and the community at large, are being punished for the actions, inactions or inefficiency of the store chain and supply line itself.

    But it is much better for a chain’s image to say, “Oh, we’re raising the price because we’re victims, and you’re a victim too” than to admit the price is being raised for other reasons (usually completely unrelated), or the actual inefficiency of the supply line.

    So the shrinkage culpability myth is a way to shift the blame of raising prices onto a third party.

  4. ***Reality****. Civil disobedience no, this was nothing less than organised theft. A shortage of financial resource (their supposed political statement), like ignorance of the law, is no excuse neither here nor in the rest of the civilised world.

    Inventory data is determined by scanned receipt input and scanned sales input. And since major supermarkets operate on (scanned) sales based replenishment systems within a 24/48 hour time window, inventory levels are kept to a minimum, usually confined to shelf stock only.

    This ‘just in time’ environment keeps the requirement to check inventory to a bare minimum. Therefore your conjecture that ‘shrinkage’ is due to miscounting is, I’m afraid, a misconception. I think you are being rather naive if you believe that theft (shoplifting) has little impact on a stores profitability. With net margins well below 10%, and in high density customer traffic stores it is probably much less than 5%, even a minor increase in levels of theft has a significant impact on the P&L.

    There is another, rather sinister side to this for which I said “we will all pay”. That is to say, if the shopping public at large see this “political statement” becoming an acceptable excuse for theft then those so disposed will get on the bandwagon. Do you really imagine retailers will stand by and not take pre-emptive action to protect their already fragile margins?.

    No, ‘Reality’, with respect, think again.

  5. Maybe If we look at the bigger picture, and whilst still not condoning this unlawful incident, the “symbolic” actions of this Syndicate would be better understood as a real call for the Government to stand up and take notice.

    The unemployed receive 400 Euros a month in Spain. This amount for a family of just four, imagine if it were larger, is hardly enough to live on if you take into account water, electricity, rent, food, medicines, school books, higher VAT, clothing, forget the mortgage, etc.
    This government is now in the process of cutting away at those 400 Euros, which would represent a savings of 750 million in its spending (final decision to be taken on the 24th instant)

    In a country with 5.6 (approx.) million unemployed and rising, and no prospects of getting a job, thousands of young Spaniards leaving the country to find employment elsewhere, hospitals closing, staff being left high and dry including teachers, doctors, nursing staff and one long etcetera, is it any wonder that a syndicate would want to give a wake up call to those that wield the “scissors” primarily into the less comfortably off of its society?

    Food for thought.

    PS Amparo, a push or a shove could hardly be construed as an “assault” and even if it were, was it this lady’s job to stop the “thieves” Dont they have Security Guards in those shops to do just that?

  6. Oh and Brian, again without condoning the actions of this syndicate:

    How about these multi-national retailers getting their “past the best sale by date” goods a couple of days before they have to take them off the shelves by law and donating these goods to charities like Red Cross etc, Caritas or other NGO’s to be distributed amongst the less fortunate, instead of just dumping them in the rubbish bins?

    That might be seen as a good will gesture, don’t you think? It wouldnt hurt their already “fragile” margins either, would it?

  7. brian – “Civil disobedience no, this was nothing less than organised theft.”

    Civil disobedience is, by definition, criminal behavior displayed as a protest or political statement. And it is almost always organized. See the civil rights movement in the USA, for example. The criminal behavior of Rosa Parks sitting on the white section of the bus. Or the independence movement in India – Mahatma Ghandi leading the illegal ‘salt march’ which was, in fact, illegally stealing salt. Very similar to what was done here.

    brian – “Therefore your conjecture that ‘shrinkage’ is due to miscounting is, I’m afraid, a misconception. I think you are being rather naive if you believe that theft (shoplifting) has little impact on a stores profitability.”

    A straw man. Shrinkage is due to a combination of wholesale theft of items in the supply chain, willful disposal of goods by the vendor, human error in inventory, in-store damage of products and shoplifting (among others). Shoplifting is actually a very small part of shrinkage.

    Hundreds of millions of Euros are lost yearly to ‘highway piracy’ – the theft of entire trucks or shipping containers full of goods. This is calculated into losses that get reported as shrinkage. These are literally hundreds of tonnes of goods. Not to mention that shipping containers slide off boats into the ocean all the time. So frequently, in fact, that dozens of recreational boats sink every year from hitting them.

    Consider that a single shipping container full of blue jeans can be worth over a million Euros. This means for shoplifting to make up even 50% of shrinkage, if they are budget jeans at 40 Euros, 25,000 pairs of jeans would have to be stolen to equal the loss of one shipping container. Now multiply that by the number of crates lost at sea, seized by customs, stolen or even accidentally destroyed – all of which get counted as shrinkage.

    Large quantities of perishable goods (fruits, meats, fish, etc.) are disposed of on a daily basis. Literally hundreds of kilos of fruits, meat, fish, bread, pastries, etc. are disposed of daily. This is also calculated into estimates of shrinkage that get reported to the public.

    Non-perishable goods, such as toys, are scanned either by third party inventory companies or in-store staff. This gives a large degree of human error. Any item that is missed in a count is factored into shrinkage. However, many grocery stories actually do not include in-store inventory into their estimates of shrinkage. It is more common for retailers of items (clothes, toys, electronics, etc.).

    Any items that are defective, broken in the store or otherwise problematic (often including recalled goods) are also included.

    Finally you get items actually shoplifted. After adding A tonnes of item Z stolen from trucks and shipping crates, then adding B kilos of item Z thrown out, adding number C of items miscounted, then number D of non-serviceable items what percentage of shrinkage is actually made up of shoplifting?

    That is the PR myth that retailers would like consumers to believe. “We have to raise prices because you people are stealing.” The reality is that shrinkage is a result of inefficiency in the supply chain from the beginning to the very end. However, a retailer can’t say “We have to raise prices because we’re inefficient.” If they take the blame – which they should, because they are responsible – then they can’t justify pushing the public at large with price hikes.

  8. ***Cricket***. Six of one, half dozen of the other. The idea is to sell the product BEFORE it’s ‘sell by date’ which is why supermarket stock control and forecasting is largely managed by computer.

    Losses incurred in selling off ‘near to date’ overstocked product at reduced prices is but another margin eroding component and, if left unchecked will, in the long term, impact upon pricing strategy.

    In a lean operation I doubt you would find much in their bins to donate and as a consequence their prices are likely to be lean too. Take a look at (for example) Lidl’s bins. Hardly used. Your saying “fragile” en paréntesis is, I think, a rather cynical observation of retailing.

    And security guards???. So where is their salary going to come from??.

    You don’t overcome government incompetence by the organised and mass breaking of the law. That is called anarchy, which achieves nothing apart from polarised intransigence.

  9. amparo – “….Reality…. So, are you saying “there is nothing morally wrong” with assaulting a member of staff (as we all saw on TV) for doing her job???. ‘The end justifies the means eh’ ?.”

    Lets take your reasoning to its natural conclusion:

    1995 – Million Man March. A man gets pushed down by a participant. Thus, Rosa Parks is to blame.

    Needless to say, the point and intent of Gordillo’s civil disobedience stunt was not to push down Mercadona workers. Nor were violent incidents in the Million Man March the point or intent of its leaders. What you have here is a classic guilt by association fallacy.

  10. ****Reality****. Well, my 40 years in high volume UK supermarket management has furnished me with a completely different analysis of the issues involved. And my success was not derived from accepting as inevitable and unmanageable that which you present (at length) above.

  11. Brian, you mention one. Look at the bins of the other ones, the bigger ones. Go see how loads of people wait outside and look through their bins. You would be surprised. There are even some NGO’s who are collecting this discarded stuff. I have seen pictures in the press about it.

    Im not saying you dont know your stuff, obviously 40 years of high volume UK supermarket management gives you the experience – in UK – in times of plenty its a completely different kettle of fish. In these times of crisis now, in present times – in Spain – and believe me there is a crisis where people are actually going hungry and juggling whether they should spend the little money they have on the medication they now have to pay or on food.

    Like I said and I repeat I am not condoning these actions nor would I take part or urge anybody to take the law into their own hands and raid supermarkets – it ain’t cricket – but look at the whole picture first, and then maybe you will understand.

    What do you think would happen if the 5.6 million unemployed were deprived of the little they now get? The charitable organisations who are feeding some of those unemployed are overwhelmed as it is.

    Sr. Gordillo’s actions, plus the visit to the King of Spain of two other Syndicate leaders to plead for the unemployed , may have something to do with the fact that the government are now “thinking” about whether it will or whether it wont.

    Lets pray they won’t.

  12. News at 9: “Wealthy geriatrics who led privileged lives and retired on the luxury coast of Spain unable to understand people stealing food to eat.”

    Panel at 10: “Poor people panhandling outside of your luxury villa and ruining the scenery. Deport or imprison?”

  13. ***Reality*** If those remarks are directed towards me, you are way, way off the mark. I live in a modest mountain village home, spend all my disposable income locally thus supporting the village and I only employ local Spanish tradesmen. And I GIVE much of my free time to local youngsters helping them with their english thus enhancing their employment options. Not to mention being upfront with my tax declarations.

    That is to say, like many other ex pats I actually DO what I can to be socially constructive and responsible.

    Politicians are sworn to achieving their goals legally. That is what they are (handsomely) paid for, not act like some kind of Iberian Mugabe sequestrating everything in sight. That is no way to achieve prosperity.

  14. Brian – it isn’t directed at you. It is an attitude I see (in various comments on Olive Press and elsewhere); a major disconnect between the reality of people who have resources and the reality of people who live day to day.

    I would dispute that politicians are sworn to achieving their goals legally. Throughout history a great deal of positive change has been brought through illegal action. What Nelson Mandela did was illegal. What Mahatma Gandhi did was illegal. Martin Luther King Jr. was imprisoned for breaking the law. French Revolution. American Revolution. Etc.

    The specific quality and nature of an individual action is what needs to be evaluated. Not simply if it is illegal or legal. Stealing food openly as a form of protest is obviously not the same as a shoplifting gang stealing items to resell for a profit, for example, although legally they are identical. A blanket assumption that man-made laws are equivalent to a mandate from heaven, or moral ‘goodness’, sets the stage for authoritarianism. It tells us that if something is legal it is fine (“sure, you can own slaves”) and that if something is illegal it is not fine (“no, black people can’t use the same water fountain”).

    No one should be afraid to break a law, particularly in open, peaceful civil disobedience, for what they believe in. That is how many laws are changed.

    As far as a political move, he is being called Robin Hood. So now he’s a folk hero and can be virtually assured of a political career for the rest of his life. It was a smart move from a pragmatic point of view.

  15. Happy to say that the 400 euros subsistance allowance for the 200,000 unemployed in Spain who had gone through all the normal unemployment benefits and have been unable to find a job, (only 6% manage to obtain a job after this) will now be getting the 400 euros again for a little longer. Seems that one battle has been won (for the time being). No wonder with All the opposition parties, the syndicates, some individuals of the governing party, and maybe the King himself protesting about it.

    Many more on the horizon.

    And talking of battles….Today a lady who had bought a flat four years ago for 158,000 euros is now unable to continue paying the mortgage because she has lost her job. She was on TV this morning, in tears, saying that she had been evicted with her family. The bank expropriated the flat, even though she offered to pay a rent whilst she was out of work and pay it all back when she found a job. The bank takes the flat but she still has to pay 238,000 euros of the mortgage including interest of a flat she now does not own.

    This same situation is being experienced by thousands of Spanish families.

    It just ain’t cricket, is it?

  16. Brian, good to know you are doing your bit, really. If everyone put in their penny’s worth it might help even more people.

    But talking about politicians, whether handsomley paid or not, those that are sworn in to achieve their “goals” legally.

    Legal means doing what they said and trumpeted throughout the election campaign they would do, or would not do (their goals).

    What would the clasification be of a party that once in Government does the complete opposite?

    Hmmmmm difficult to find a printable adjective isnt it?

  17. ***Cricket***. By legally, I was referring to their (recorded) allegiance to the constitution which includes, as far as I am aware, the acceptance of royal decree’s which, by implication, would include the age old definition of theft. If Gordillo wishes to make a political statement out of his act of robbery then that is for the courts to ruminate over.

    Rahoy, (in his typical ‘let’s wait and see’ characteristic) should have made his ‘prórroga’ decision weeks ago to avoid this lamentable UI action.

    And that brings me to my original point. A precedent has now been set. That is to say, all and sundry who wish to justify shoplifting will now simply claim they have no money for food/clothing and that they are therefore ‘entitled’ to steal it.

    And do you think such activity will be confined to los pobres??. No way. My life in retail tells me los ricos are just as inclined. And in that way, the honest shoppers will ALL pay more whether it be through increased prices or the cost of employing extra security staff.

  18. Brian they already employ security staff. That was why I said before that the lady at the checkout who tried to stop one of the “thieves” had really no business doing so, and I am sure that the men carrying out the dastardly deed had no intention of hurting her or anybody else either. I would put it down to the general hystericsin the staff that the action provoked – there were police and cameras outside the entrance of that particular shop everybody could see that. In UK you would have shop stewards making a lot of noise about that particular impinging on somebody else’s job description.

    You might also like to ponder on the latest supposedly “cancerigenous” ingredients “if put together” that another retailer has been selling for years and now has had to take off its shelves, which is reported on by this and other newspapers. Will that be put down as shrinkage or will joe public also have to pay for that particular “hiccup.” Or even will they and the lab readily accept any future outcome from any victim that may arise from that “hiccup”?

    The “prorroga” or whatever it’s called is just what it is a “stalling” of what might become a reality later on, especially when a few more hundred thousand who are waiting in the wings with not a hope in hell of finding a job, boost the numbers.

    Shoplifters come in all shapes and sizes, from all walks of life, and as you must know yourself and in my much shorter and different line of retail experience, there are more higher class ones that there are of the middle and lower variety.

    Food, a roof over your head and a job are not luxuries they are necessities, and that is precisely what Sr. Gordillo is trying to bring the Government’s attention to with his and his syndicate’s actions albeit in a less than acceptable way to the polite society. Hitting at the poorest in Spain’s society is hardly going to get the Government any brownie points is it, and neither is it going to get the country out of the hole its dug itself into.

    Sr. Gordillo himself has pointed out, “if they are looking for the real thieves look elsewhere, dont look at me”

  19. Brian you speak about the allegiance to their Constitution

    Look again

    “http://www.derechoshumanos.net/constitucion/index.htm?gclid=CJTPo8ef6rECFQcOfAodcisAKA”

    How many of these articles are now not being strictly adhered to and not precisely by Sr. Gordillo?

  20. Brian – ” That is to say, all and sundry who wish to justify shoplifting will now simply claim they have no money for food/clothing and that they are therefore ‘entitled’ to steal it.”

    There is a difference between openly violating a law in an act of civil disobedience and covertly violating a law for personal gain.

    This is also a slippery slope fallacy. There is no evidence to support that shoplifting is going to increase, or that people will feel entitled to shoplift, because of Gordillo’s civil protest. Nor that people who don’t already steal will suddenly begin to steal when they have never stolen before.

  21. ***cricket*** Specifically, Título 1, Artículo 10 Número 1.

    ……”Hay que respetar la ley”………

    ***Reality*** Every employee, security staff or otherwise, has a duty to assist in the protection of the property of the employer.

    Gordillo is gaining political kudos (and Rajoy can’t or won’t see it) using the tenuous claim of making a political statement and, in addition, has compounded the belief held by most of the Spanish populace, that is to say, ‘many of those holding the office of mayor are lawless (covertly or otherwise)’ and therefore, what is good for the goose….

    What (I think) we are agreed upon, though from opposing worlds, is that a giant can of worms has been opened, and I believe that whatever emerges, no-one, not even los pobres, in the long term, will benefit.

    I would also suggest we stop wasting newspaper resources by using it to pursue a pointless argument.

  22. “It ain’t cricket” (isn’t ??) Hysterical staff??. No way.

    A mob of looters making off with unpaid for goods, Guardia Civil agents wandering around wondering what to do?, TV crews adding to the general mayhem intent on milking the situation?. And you think that shop staff should just stand aside and just let it happen?. That ‘push’ as you laughingly put it was forceful, deliberate and intended to create submission. If it had been me that assailant would have crawled home wishing he had been wearing a cricket box. And that would have been self defence. There is/was NO excuse for this anarchy.

  23. Amparo – “And you think that shop staff should just stand aside and just let it happen?”

    Brian – “Every employee, security staff or otherwise, has a duty to assist in the protection of the property of the employer.”

    Actually store employees are specifically trained not to interfere, confront criminals or attempt to stop crimes. There are many reasons for this (store liability and employee safety being the big ones). They are, in fact, supposed to stand aside and let it happen.

    Even professional security staff are trained on what criminal situations are ‘hands off.’ They don’t have the same legal rights to restrain individuals or use force that the police do. If a store employee, or professional security, physically restrained a person for shoplifting (particularly if they caused an injury) they may find the charges they face are far more severe than those facing the thief.

    As far as the Guardia Civil, it looks like they stood by and allowed the people to commit their illegal demonstration. Now they are following up and making arrests. What would you prefer – that they run in with weapons to confront a large group of people? No doubt we would hear the opposite complaint in that case; “Spanish police are so brutal! Look at how they went in and beat those poor people stealing food!”

    Looks to me like they did the right thing. Stand by. Collect evidence. Make arrests later without excessive violence.

  24. —-REALITY—-So what next??, can’t pay the mortgage/luz/tax, so let’s rob a bank. And the Guardia Civil would just stand back eh?. Yeah right. At least you admit they were criminals. And how many arrests have been made after a week of dutifully collecting such elusive evidence?. Six. Brilliant.

    The reality is (no pun intended) that first, the TV failed to relay to the store the advance information they had received. A great en directo scoop for them. Second, (it is suggested that) the Guardia Civil were also aware and could have alerted the store to close its grills. And third, you are wrong. Staff are trained (and contracted) to take all reasonable precautions, without provoking personal injury, to protect the property of their employer and the Guardia Civil upon (eventually) deducing that injuries could result should have interfered in a positive, corrective and professional manner.

    It is not a case of imposing a police state environment but that of maintaining law and order.

    As ‘Brian’ has already suggested, this is a pointless argument and I have no more comment to post.

  25. amparo – “—-REALITY—-So what next??, can’t pay the mortgage/luz/tax, so let’s rob a bank.”

    Slippery slope fallacy. Look it up.

    But of course I do admit they are criminals. They broke a law – thus they committed a crime. This isn’t disputed. The storybook hero Robin Hood was also a criminal (a murderer, too, in fact). Ghandi, Mandela, King, Jesus, Galileo, etc. – all criminals, by definition. The problem is that people confuse ‘illegal’ with ‘immoral.’ Illegal does not automatically mean wrong. It may surprise you to learn that many people believe that hungry people stealing food is justifiable. Or even robbing from the rich to give to the poor (thus why Robin Hood is portrayed as a hero in the mythos, not a villain).

    amparo – “Staff are trained (and contracted) to take all reasonable precautions, without provoking personal injury, to protect the property of their employer.”

    What, specifically, do you think grocery store staff are contracted and trained to do? When hiring a grocery store employee is there a day devoted to teaching them how to stop a group of men pushing shopping carts full of food out of the doors? They learn safe restraint techniques? A self-defense course in case the people they confront turn violent? The job description is sell food and confront criminals?

    I can imagine the instructions now; “It is your duty – 18-year-old, 40 kilo girl – not only to ring up groceries, but to physically intervene if you suspect someone of a crime. Tackle them and restrain them, but do it in a way that does not give us any legal liability. Throw your body in front of a shopping cart if you must. These bags of sugar and loves of bread are sacred. Defend them with your life. Welcome to the team, here are your Mercadona shirt and handcuffs.”

  26. Leaving aside the rights and wrongs for now, Reality is correct on police tactics. They must have copied the English police on the recent riots. The police knew they had most of the rioters bang to rights on C.C.T.V. and so sat on their collective asses mostly while it went on (or so it appeared). Only to follow up afterwards with huge collations of data, resulting in thousands of arrests and gallons of porridge dished out. Not a perfect system, but one that lets property suffer rather than bodies. Of course it’s absurd to expect shop assistants to confront tea leaves at their trade, that’s what C.C.T.V.and security services are for.

  27. I look at this proliferation of verbal diarrhoea and wonder what planet ‘reality’ and ‘cricket’ really live on. And now ‘stefanjo’ is the latest to contribute to converting a clear black and white report into one of a grey, confused and utterly incomprehensible commentary.

    Do you (plural) think that large multi-regional/multinational supermarkets are manned by nothing but “18 year old 40, kilo girl’s”?. Of course not, there is always a sizeable % of mature male staff on duty. And where was the store manager on this occasion, hiding in his office??. Where were the “security services”, gawping at the monitors in an office??. They, collectively, manager, male staff, security personnel AND the police presence should have taken immediate action and assumed control. Instead they (apparently) left it to the female checkout staff which resulted in intimidation, verbal and physical assault and chaos. Disgraceful.

    All this garbage about “the absurdity of confronting thieves in action” and the condoning of police procrastination is but a symphony of green lights and heaven sent acquiescence to that element of society who will always seize the moment.

    ‘Slippery slope’ is not a fallacy when it comes to human nature. It is a well proven historical fact that, in self service retail (not exclusive to food), visible evidence of impotent security/staff, weak application of intervention/interception/reporting policies will inevitably lead to an escalation of theft attempts.

    AND, as someone pointed out right at the start, that is an extra cost component that retailers, in their ultra-competitive environment, in order to stay in business, cannot and will not absorb and, as a result, we will ALL end up paying more.

  28. Glad I finally took the trouble to read the full O.P. Online story about this chap. I now don’t give a toss about the thieving. This man is an absolute inspiration. He cares about PEOPLE and does something about it. The “robbing” is a mere bagatelle, the way he runs his town should be an example to Spain, Europe even. Call it Socialism, Marxism or Communism. It matters not, what matters is, it works, for the people and the community. More power to his elbow.

  29. — stefanjo—Thankfully 99.99% of the population believe that living within the rule of law is a rather more civilised way of life than reverting to the anarchy of the dark ages.

    The past has proven time and time again that the umbrella of socialism under which all left wing loonies reside benefits only those who can brainwash their followers into thinking you can make the poor rich by making the rich poor (or by stealing from them).

    North Korea might seem a more attractive place for you to live.

  30. Luke – Thankfully 99.99% of the population believe that living within the rule of law is a rather more civilised way of life than reverting to the anarchy of the dark ages.”

    “…The past has proven time and time again that the umbrella of socialism under which all left wing loonies…”

    A bit of a history lesson for you – during the “Dark Ages” there was not anarchy. And it also wasn’t left-wing. You had feudalism with kings, lords and surfs. You also had theocracy as the Roman Catholic Church has governmental and judicial power. And of course, various enclaves of different style of government, but nothing that could be called “anarchy” by any means. In fact, feudalism was extremely structured. Definitely not left-wing, or anarchistic. In fact, right-wing, by definition.

    Also 99.9% of statistics are made up on the spot. Since 33% of the UK population has been arrested or charged with a crime (not counting traffic violations; only criminal citations, with or without arrest) it would seem to go against this strange idea that 99.9% of the population actually respect the law. In reality – most people believe breaking the law is justifiable in some cases.

    The only place where 99.9% of the people actually do follow the law or face the consequences, is, in fact North Korea (right wing). You’re the one supporting authoritarianism (“it’s the law”) and North Korea is the most authoritarian state in the world. Wouldn’t you actually fit in better there than, say, someone like Gordillo?

  31. The 33% figure is irrelevant, since those people are still living under the rule of law. When a person breaks a law, they are still living under the rule of law. Respecting the law is a completely different thing.

    Reality, please go back to college (term starts soon) and stop pretending you are an intellectual. lol.

HAVE YOUR SAY...