Felipe González Márquez is a lawyer and politician from Seville, popularly known for having been President of the Government in Spain.
As a member of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party, Felipe González was president of the government from 1982 to 1996. Possibly one of the best references of the Socialist Party, the former president gained a great number of admirers and also detractors during his long political career.
Phrases and thoughts of Felipe González
This famous politician has also worked as an Extraordinary Ambassador and President of the EU Council of Wise Men. We can all learn a lot from the figure of this famous social democrat, which is why we have thought it relevant to make a selection of the 75 best celebratory phrases of Felipe González that we should all remember.
1. The loneliness of power is knowing that this is always the last phone to ring. And that I have to decide. I can’t take the decision to a higher level.
When you are the head of a state, the most complicated problems must be solved by you.
2. At this decisive historical moment, in which capitalist society reaches its maximum inflection point and begins its vertiginous and irreversible decline, the new rising class, the working classes, even if they have triumphed on the political plane, must have enough power to dissuade or persuade the social class that is losing control of political or economic power, that the breaking of the rules of the democratic game by them, attempting involution, would only lead to precipitate their fall.
Currently the countries, including Spain, are much more democratic than they used to be.
3. Socialism and democracy are indissolubly linked.
In this quote, Gonzalez talks about the strong link between socialism and the democratic system.
4. The development of capitalism corresponds to the constant political progress of the bourgeoisie, which, regardless of its will, plays an eminently revolutionary role in history. The bourgeoisie seizes power by violently destroying the traditional patriarchal relations of feudalism and the moral and religious bonds which united man with the supernatural and with his natural “masters”.
Socialism has always fought fervently against capitalism and the bourgeois class.
5. The Constitution in Spain was made because we decided that it should be made, and we only had 30% of the votes. If it had been up to Adolfo Suárez, the Constitution would not have been made. Adolfo is a very good friend of mine, but he did not want to make the Constitution.
As we see in this quotation, Adolfo Suárez was not in favour of the creation of a Spanish Constitution at the beginning.
6. Aznar and Anguita are the same shit.
In this sentence we see the total disapproval that this PSOE leader has of José María Aznar and Julio Anguita, his contemporaries in the political arena.
7. Black or white, the important thing is that the cat catches mice.
This is a way of saying that the end justifies the means, in politics you sometimes have to act this way.
8. The Republic is identified in the people with freedom and democracy.
Felipe Gonzalez is shown in this quote as a clear defender of the Republican system, something that many of us can share.
9. The Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party, which has been present in the political struggle uninterruptedly for a hundred years, defending at all costs the demands of the working class, whose total emancipation it seeks, is today, as in 1931, becoming the axis of political life and to a large extent a guarantee of the democratic alternative.
This politician’s capacity for prayer is undoubtedly very eloquent; he had a great capacity to express his own ideas.
10. No pungency.
This leader has always defended the belief that politicians should back up their speeches with good arguments, something that often does not happen.
11. It is advisable to apologize and rectify when you screw up.
Knowing how to ask for forgiveness is something very important, both in our personal life and in political life.
12. Why would a child have to put up with a scratch on his front door?
Scribbling is a very ugly practice that should not be done, but sometimes people’s jadedness turns out to be uncontrollable.
13. The bourgeoisie, as a descending social class, in spite of its dominant character at the present time, acts in a generally defensive way towards the new ascending social class, identifiable with the working class.
A very curious quote about the thoughts this politician had about the working class.
14. In short, the workers, who are burdened with the reason of the majority and the course of history in a process of equality between men, who politically can and must conquer power, must at the same time acquire the collective consciousness necessary to defend themselves from the retarded aggressions of the oppressors and to impose their will democratically (that is, by the rule of the majority).
The triumph of the working class is the purpose for which the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party was created.
15. Direct democracy or self-management prevents the creation of a political class, the notables, made up of elected officials (from trade unions to councillors and parliamentarians) who, without grass-roots control, often lead to a gap between elected officials and voters, who have no chance of speaking out again in four or five years’ time when the next elections are held.
How we elect our representatives in a democracy can be a very debatable issue that is almost never questioned.
16. Starting from the concrete, Marxist philosophy explains the laws that govern the evolutionary processes of economic phenomena, institutions, social structures and their corresponding superstructures, and the historical development of humanity in general.
As we see in this quotation, this famous politician is a firm defender of the ideas of the remarkable Karl Marx.
17. When the right to belong is not based simply on the title of citizenship, and has some added component, which can be ethnic, cultural, of any nature, then it begins to be dangerous because it begins to be exclusive of others.
Racism and intolerance should have no place in a state governed by the rule of law; we must be very careful about how laws are formulated.
18. Socialism rejects socio-political systems in which some individuals appropriate large amounts of goods while others find themselves in poverty, as well as those in which a few authoritatively order coexistence by ruling over others.
A planned economy in which the state sets certain limits may be the solution that the socialist party can propose to us.
19. Is it essential to violently suppress the existing pre-socialist state before a socialist state can be established?
As a leader he had to ask himself: how had the country been managed until his arrival and how deep the changes to be made should be.
20. The means is created by men, but among them there are profound differences of material and moral order.
What should be our indispensable goods for life and what should be our moral principles, is a question that human beings have always asked themselves.
21. The socialist methodology tries to offer a global alternative to society.
Socialism is originally intended for worldwide application.
22. NATO, for starters, no.
As we can see from this meeting, Felipe Gonzalez was not in favour of joining NATO.
23. There is something common to all socialist ideas and movements: the fact that they constitute an alternative to a society based on the capitalist mode of production.
Socialism as an economic system can be a very interesting alternative to the current capitalist system.
24. The dialectical method considers the phenomena and events of nature and history, as well as their reflections in the human mind, in a state of constant movement, in a continuous process of change and transformation, of birth, development and extinction.
We all evolve throughout our lives and change during that evolution, just as the world does throughout history.
25. In our time, when man lives in increasingly vast and complex communities and when interdependence between individuals and communities is growing, it is becoming increasingly difficult to conceive of conditions that would enhance individual happiness in terms that are not communitarian or collective, that is, in terms that do not assign a high priority to the achievement of a just social order.
With the passing of time, society has grown in size and complexity, leading us to live in a society where finding personal happiness is almost a chimera.
26. Self-management, understood in society as a whole, means, in effect, the end of exploitation, the disappearance of antagonistic classes, the full reality of democracy.
Self-management is an idea that this politician has advocated for a very long time, we should all be more economically independent.
27. In workers’ control, the unions play an essential role.
Trade unions are the means by which the labour movement can exert pressure at the highest levels.
28. In ancient Rome, this minority was composed of the patricians; in feudal society, of the different strata of the secular, military and religious nobility; in today’s capitalist world, of the bourgeois class.
There has always been a ruling class in society since the beginning of civilization.
29. The supreme aspiration of socialism is the total emancipation of man, for which it is essential to eliminate an economic system based on the exploitation of man by man.
The capitalist system is largely based on the simple exploitation of its workers.
30. We are going to create 800,000 jobs, although I think that’s not enough. Behind every unemployed person there is a family and needs that cannot be met. I know this drama and it hurts me, but at the moment we are going to create eight hundred thousand jobs, which are the most important ones.
Felipe González placed great emphasis in his speech on the creation of new jobs.
31. It follows that socialism is at the service of man, which is why it constitutes for some the humanism of our time, even though it is strictly speaking more a method of analysis than a philosophical approach.
Perhaps socialism is presented as an idea in quotes more humanistic than current capitalism.
32. The Congress of the whole State does not have to solve specific issues of Catalonia or Galicia (Gallaecia, Galiza), but it does have to decide the main features of the class struggle: for example, the electoral strategy.
In a decentralized government, the national government does not decide on matters of autonomous competence.
33. In France utopianism was more philosophical than in England. Its first representative was the Count of Saint Simon (1760-1825). According to him, society was constantly moving towards perfectibility.
Utopian socialism is one aspect of today’s socialism, which was represented by several thinkers, including the aforementioned Count of Saint Simon.
34. The world exists independently of man’s consciousness, and the relations between natural phenomena were not established by thought, but have existence of their own, independently of man’s consciousness.
Beyond the existence of man himself, the world follows its normal natural course of change and evolution.
35. Among the utopian socialists we recall Spencer (1730-1814), the founder of agrarian socialism, and William Thompson, who considered work as the sole source of value, and therefore, if the worker creates value by his own work, he must be given the full product of that work.
Today’s socialism drinks from many different philosophical sources and Felipe Gonzalez was a great connoisseur of those sources.
36. Most prominent is the figure of Robert Owen (1771-1858), who was the first to consider the proletariat as an independent class with common interests.
There is no doubt that the concept of the proletariat is a concept that we should all bear in mind, since its acceptance is currently quite widespread.
37. Any political party has to offer a structure or a socio-political project for the ordering of the society on which it operates, which does not contradict the structuring it gives itself as a party.
Obviously, a political party must always be clear about its ideological side.
38. But democratic fullness will only be achieved in a socialist society.
As a defender of the socialist system, Gonzalez presents it as the only solution for a completely democratic society.
39. Socialism can be broadly defined as the deepening of the concept of democracy.
In this quote we can see how for this politician, socialism can be almost a clear path to democratic evolution.
40. In 1982 I promised to create 800,000 jobs, and by 1986 800,000 had been destroyed. Four years later I promised nothing and 1,300,000 were created.
In politics we must not promise in vain, because the move can go very wrong.
41. Going beyond the contemporary nationalist horizon, he proposed the Federation of European States, as a political instrument to avoid wars and ensure world peace.
This politician also presided over the EU Council of Wise Men, where he became well known for his contributions.
42. Each stage in history corresponds to the predominance of a given class and a given system of production.
Indeed, there has always been a ruling class, and economic systems are conducive to the creation of such a class.
43. In turn, collective ownership of the means of production (collectivization) does not inevitably lead, in itself, to socialism.
In this quote we can see how the ideas of this famous politician, have a great influence of the thinker Karl Marx.
This crutch was widely used by this former Spanish Prime Minister.
45. Socialism is therefore, in each of its historical concretions, the response of the oppressed to an unjust social situation, and in this response it combines theory and practice in a dialectical process, that is, of mutual influence.
Socialism can provide a very good opportunity for growth for all classes within society.
46. We cannot go in the opposite direction of a demand implicit in socialist logic, which is largely internationalist, and create within the Spanish State a socialist division based on a supposed independence of nationalities.
Socialism needs international collaboration and agreement between several countries for it to function properly.
47. From a finalist point of view, this concept is identified with that of self-management.
All countries should be independent enough so that their economy is not significantly affected by the international market.
48. Suppressing the profit also means cancelling the currency as an instrument of exchange and measure of value, replacing it with work bonds.
This perhaps somewhat radical measure for many of us was seen with different eyes at other times in history.
49. I am first and foremost a Social Democrat.
One of the most relevant social democrats of the 20th century.
50. Self-management implies that men can decide democratically in their work and in all areas of social activity.
In a socialist world we could all decide democratically on the labour issues that concern us.
51. Man is not a passive entity but an active one, influenced by nature and at the same time reacting to it and modifying it. Human progress is the result of the constant, permanent action of man on nature, in a tenacious effort to dominate and transform it.
With our actions we can change society little by little, like the water that passes between the rocks and deforms them as it passes by.
52. The advantages of democratic constitutions lie in their open nature, which allows them to be perfected and based on the principles of equality, justice and freedom.
The constitution can be modified to accommodate the rights that Spaniards believe are fundamental.
53. Today’s world is very complicated, but it is more like the real world than the 20th century.
The world of the 21st century is undoubtedly highly complicated, due to its complexity and speed of change.
54. Socialism opposes individualism by extolling the virtues of collaboration and cooperation among men to achieve a common goal, as opposed to the competitive attitude that advocates the pursuit of individual interests against and in competition with the interests of others.
The way socialism approaches production is very different from how capitalism approaches production. Will a socialist government ever be more productive than a capitalist one?
55. It is not enough, then, to change the individual, for this task is impossible if the rules that order the coexistence of men are not changed.
For a large number of individuals to change, society must change with them.
56. There is an institutional crisis galloping into anarchy.
Spain has found itself on the edge of the precipice on countless occasions.
57. Socialism as an alternative to the society of exploitation of man by man is not possible without respect for freedom; without consciously assuming the concept of democracy.
Capitalism squeezes the workers to the max, socialism promises to be a more worker-friendly society.
58. The aspiration to freedom is at the root of both liberal movements and ideas and of anarchists and libertarians of all kinds.
Freedom is a concept that countless ideologies have tried to define, socialism, communism, anarchy, what is freedom and what is not?
59. The rule of law is also defended in the sewers.
To be able to defend the rule of law, the struggle must be at all levels of society and in all political spheres.
60. Two fundamental aspects of the transition to socialism: collectivization and planning
A better planned economy offers us on paper a better social solution than simple speculation with material goods.
61. A historical science does not analyse facts and organisms as fixed categories, but in their state of permanent evolution.
The evolution of society and the human being is constant and unstoppable, society is always changing and adapting to the circumstances of the moment.
62. In our view, democratic freedoms as understood in Western Europe are a substantial part of the concept of democracy and are inextricably linked to the socialist alternative.
Freedom is a vitally important concept within any political ideology that considers itself democratic.
63. Self-management prevents the degeneration of representative democracy and is in turn limited by it. Self-management also avoids the bureaucratic centralism to which the pure and simple nationalization of the entire economy gave rise in the USSR.
In this quote we see one of the weak points of the former USSR, according to this politician’s point of view.
64. Human emancipation requires first and foremost that the social environment in which the individual lives be transformed, and for that purpose profit must be suppressed and the worker must recover and consume his own product.
Changing the economic system in order to change society, that is the maxim that Felipe González wishes to convey to us with these words.
65. The transformation of utopian socialism into a scientifically based doctrine is due to Karl Marx and Frederick Engels.
These two great thinkers are to a large extent the creators of socialist ideology.
66. But in bourgeois society, class antagonisms have been simplified, reduced to the fundamental struggle between proletarians and bourgeois.
Indeed, the antagonism of the bourgeois class with the proletariat is historical, even becoming something truly remarkable in our society.
67. The origin and evolution of the proletariat are parallel to the birth and development of the bourgeoisie, although they are antagonistic in nature. But of all the classes which oppose the bourgeoisie, only the proletariat is truly revolutionary, since its victory will not represent the victory of a minority for its own benefit, but the victory of the immense majority for the benefit of that same immense majority.
A 10 percent of society concentrates 90 percent of the wealth of the whole society, for socialism this seems completely immoral.
68. Marx did not limit himself to establishing new theories to explain the world, but to transform it. He dedicated himself to discovering the guiding laws of the evolution of humanity and social phenomena.
Karl Marx’s studies are undoubtedly very revealing, especially as far as the functioning of society is concerned.
69. After the civil war, the socialists reorganized themselves in the concentration camps and prisons, while those who had had to emigrate did so in exile.
The socialist party was repressed and persecuted after the Spanish civil war.
70. The attachment to the Chinese communist interpretation or to the Italian one or to the Russian one or to communism according to Trotsky’s vision, creates insurmountable walls between the different groups.
Each nation created a different type of communism within its borders, as the application of communism was carried out in different ways.
71. The military uprising of July 18 moves the class struggle onto the battlefield.
A revolution can turn into a civil war if it meets with an armed response.
72. The most characteristic feature of Marxism is the analysis of facts, institutions and social relations in the concrete conditions of the time to which they correspond and not according to certain ethical norms to which permanent value is attributed.
According to this (Marxist) ideology, laws and institutions can change to suit the needs of the moment.
73. The bourgeoisie is advancing along the path of history, unceasingly revolutionizing social relations, transforming the industrial structure and the means and instruments of work. It breaks down national borders and, in order to conquer new markets, penetrates or occupies continents and countries which were on the fringes of modern civilization. Therefore, the new revolutions will have scenarios of continental and international amplitude.
Indeed, for a real revolution to take place today, it should be international in nature, otherwise it would be stopped by foreign interventionism.
74. Up to the present, the dominant social classes were minorities and, consequently, their victory did not result in the total emancipation of society, but in the imposition of the power of a minority.
In all economic systems that have prospered to date, a minority has always taken power.
75. There are two important causes that give English utopian socialism its peculiar character: the industrial revolution with its courtship of miseries for the rising proletarian class and the development of a new branch of science: political economy.
The specific situations in which a country finds itself can give rise to a type of communism adapted to that society and designed for that precise moment.