Thursday, 9 March 2017

So Many Laws (No Wonder We Skip a Few of Them)



From Business over Tapas

Paperwork, laws, rules. Bureaucracy. Often from different offices, different authorities. The inspections... the social security... the ‘norms’ and so on. How do we do it? You may want to create employment and help the economy in a modest way, but first, you need to get those permissions to open. 
Tacitus says: Corruptissima re-publica, plurimae leges Рthe more corrupt a country is, the more laws it has. In Spain, we have more than 100,000 laws and regulations which occupy over 1,250,000 pages in the Official State Bulletin (BOE) and Рat least Рanother 800,000 in the rules from the various autonomies. Vozpópuli opines on this subject here

A Reader writes: I wanted to comment on your snippet concerning Spanish laws and Spanish bureaucracy.  From what you write (and wrote earlier) I take it you haven't had to deal much with British laws and bureaucracy of late?  Or, for that matter, Dutch laws and bureaucracy.
What I find so refreshing in Spain is that there is little or no moral disapproval if you don't observe all the laws.  If you break a law (or do not observe it) and get caught, you get fined  - and the neighbours just shrug their shoulders and laugh a little for being such a fool as to get caught. Our experience has been that even the stern bureaucrats in Hacienda often shrug their shoulders and try to help us find a way of avoiding the worst tangles. Whereas in Holland and England, people who break the law also get disapproval ladled over them as being immoral and wicked - the neighbours won't speak to them and their children are not allowed to play with the children of the malefactor.
I suppose a lot of your time (and certainly a lot of our time) is spent on constructing methods of avoiding the problems encountered in observing all the laws, but then we have the same problems in Holland and England.  It is just that each country has a different area in which it is difficult and a lot of time passed in getting used to one country is spent on finding the "wriggle room".
Jan.


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