Added value should not be
an urban legend

The online formation of companies is drawing nearer

Article in Caja Siete Blog, 26 September 2019

Leopoldo Cólogan

Leopoldo Cólogan in the Historical Military Museum of the Canary Islands (the old Almeyda Fort in Santa Cruz de Tenerife), where the letter signed by an injured Horacio Nelson in which he thanks and gives recognition to Antonio Gutiérrez for “his humanity towards those among our injured who were under his command or in his care, as well as for the generosity he showed to everyone who was disembarked” is displayed.

In reality, in order to have taxation on added value, it needs to be clear and not just made up. It must prove the non-existence of an increase in the value of the land arduously transferred to the liable taxpayer and, therefore, that the main tax obligation corresponding to the tax on the increase in the value of land that has an urban nature has not arisen. In such cases, the tax is not due.

This burden of proof is essentially established in the doctrine of the Supreme Court, Third Chamber for Contentious Administrative Proceedings, Section 2a, through sentences 1154/2019, 1151/2019 and 1155/2019 of 26 July 2019.

The same can be seen in the Black Legend, which the dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy defines as an unfavourable and generally unfounded story about someone or something, adding “the Spanish Black Legend”, where someone or something must prove that it is not true, but a lie, as are half-truths.

Besides the Black Legends and the prejudices and superiority and inferiority complexes that they generate, the so-called modern age, a period in which values such as progress, communication and reason prevail, came about when the Spanish empire led the world, at least in the West. From 1492 onwards, it discovered America, incorporated its territories, which included a large part of Europe at the time (including the Iberian Peninsula, the Netherlands, the territory that is now Belgium, part of what is now France, part of modern-day Germany, Milan, Naples and Sicily) and was also present in Africa and Asia.

Simply put, it was the dominant global power and a benchmark to be emulated, surpassed and compared with to determine capabilities and values, which protected the West from the East, such as in the decisive victory of the Spanish empire with the so-called Holy League (“Liga Santa”) in the Battle of Lepanto in 1571.

The British Navy considered itself powerful, in particular as a result of two battles against the Spanish Armada, which is still remembered and commemorated in the United Kingdom to this day. It was a defensive which defeated the Invincible Armada of Phillip II, as the English coined it, in 1588, and another British victory in the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, when they defeated the French and the Spanish. The latter was regarded at the time as a leading navy and led, on this occasion, by the French headed Napoleon I Bonaparte, who were the ones who really drove the confrontation with the British.

While the Spanish Armada defeated the British Navy when it counterattacked in La Coruña and in Lisbon in 1589, as well as in Cádiz in 1625, in Cartagena de Indias in 1741 with the legendary Blas de Lezo, in Pensacola, which is now Florida, in 1781 with the extraordinary Bernardo de Gálvez, and in Río de La Plata in 1806 and 1807, there was pride in the Spanish empire and in those countries which it later became: modern-day Argentina and Uruguay.

There were other battles with a variety of outcomes, such as the Battle of Santa Cruz de Tenerife in 1797, which saw General Gutiérrez defeat Admiral Nelson, who lost his arm in the battle and surrendered. Nelson later died a British hero in the Battle of Trafalgar.

"It is important to recognise people’s contributions to the world, but the fact is that no one can lecture others on morals,"

The great British achievement that helped it become a colonialist empire was the industrial revolution from 1760 onwards, which fostered the development of a middle class, which is what makes a country and an economy great.

Whereas the impressive achievement of the current dominant power, the United States of America, is – in addition to its democratic culture – the technological and digital revolution, which includes putting a man on the moon in 1969 and priceless and intelligent assistance in rebuilding Western Europe in 1948 after World War Two with the Marshall Plan. As part of this plan, it provided financing, something that was lacking, and got it accustomed to buying US products, which helped to make it the world’s most powerful economy. At the same time, the US opened up a new major market.

It is important to recognise people’s contributions to the world, but the fact is that no one can lecture others on morals, and history cannot be confused with legend, literature and propaganda.

It is evident that not everyone was equal in the United States of America despite the wording of its Declaration of Independence in 1776. The concept of a person was loaded with prejudices and the United Kingdom cannot boast about having trafficked opium in China and having won wars because of it in 1842 and 1860, and none of them can deny having become rich on the back of slavery and failing to protect and mistreating the native peoples of North America and Africa, as well as the native population of Australia in the case of the British.

It is also evident that the Spanish empire did not go to America in order to exterminate the natives or search for el dorado, as told in the Black Legend. There was a certain level of concern and extensive regulation of indigenous rights (the Royal Provision in 1503, the Laws of Burgos in 1512, the Edict of 1530, new laws and the creation of the figure of the Protector of the Indians in 1542, and the controversy in Valladolid in 1550 and 1551), and this concern became the origin of modern international law, embodied by Francisco de Vitoria from the University of Salamanca.

In the modern age, there was a growing awareness of the dignity and moral issues pertaining to the human condition in the face of abuses and cruelty that were part and parcel of the conquests and wars. New universities were founded, scientific and political trips were embarked on, such as the Malaspina Expedition in 1789, which was considered the first international health expedition in history, the Balmis expedition (with the smallpox vaccine) in 1803 and trade grew (from America to Europe: Corn, potato, cacao/chocolate, peanuts, tomatoes, turkey, gold, silver, etc. From Europe to America: Cotton, wheat, rice, sugar cane, vine grapes, bananas, coffee, horse, beef, pork, etc.).

There is an exhibition about the foundation of new universities including:
• Real Universidad de Lima in 1551, now Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos de Perú.
• Universidad de Santo Tomás de Aquino in Santo Domingo, in what is now the Dominican Republic, in 1538.
• Universidad de San Pablo de México in 1551.
• Universidad de Santiago de la Paz in Santo Domingo in 1558.
• Universidad de Santo Domingo in Santa Fe de Bogotá, now Colombia, in 1580.
• Universidad de San Fulgencio in Quito, present-day Ecuador, in 1586.
• Universidad de Santa Catalina in Mérida, Yucatán in 1622.
• Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá in 1622.
• Universidad de San Ignacio in Córdoba, present-day Argentina, in 1622.
• Universidad de San Gregorio in Quito in 1622.
• Universidad de San Ignacio de Loyola del Cusco in 1622.
• Universidad de San Javier in Charcas, present-day Bolivia, in 1624.
• Universidad de San Miguel in Santiago de Chile in 1625, without entering into the discussion of which are officially the oldest.

History has shown us that humans fought for power and trade, finding a justification for just about anything, however illogical, and turning the illegitimate into the legitimate with strong propaganda campaigns, which were propelled by the invention of the printing press by Johannes Gutenberg in 1440.

All this has meant that businesses and companies have had to adapt, and some of the inventions that we now benefit from on a daily basis were developed in view of these fights, including the need for indoctrination to establish or maintain a certain amount of power, favouring literacy among the population

Public opinion is so powerful that those who try to manipulate it need excuses accepted by it in order to act, and if they don’t exist, then they invent them. This ought to lead us to continuously analyse whether the excuse is real or has been created in order to serve a particular interest, which is no easy task. Take, for example, the excuse that the United States of America used in 1898 to declare war against Spain, which irrevocably ceased to be an empire in the face of a rising empire.

This excuse was an, apparently internal, explosion which was the motivation behind the sinking of US battleship Maine in the port of Havana, in which a large part of the crew perished, while the majority of officials were enjoying a dance performed in their honour by the Spanish authorities, and this occurred after their offer to buy Cuba and Puerto Rico had been rejected.

I consider the meritocracy, independence and liberty of individuals and companies in the context of equality to be values promoted by the European Union, which represents a historic success in terms of coexistence and sincere communal values among Europeans. Yet, at the same time, there are powers that may be concerned about an excessively strong European Union, with many historical links to other regions, such as large parts of America, because it challenges their economic power, which leads them to form alliances with more local, yet ambitious and fearful, powers in order to undermine it.

In the same thread, Directive (EU) 2019/1151 of the European Parliament and Council of 20 June 2019 was published on 11 July 2019, amending Directive (EU) 2017/1132, with regard to the use of digital tools and processes surrounding company law, which is to be transposed before 1 August 2021, for the foundation of companies online. The directive sets out to ensure that there is a legal and administrative environment that can meet the new economic and social challenges of globalisation and digitalisation, on the one hand, in order to provide the necessary safeguards against exploitation and fraud and, on the other hand, to pursue objectives such as promoting economic growth, creating jobs and attracting investments in the European Union, which would economically and socially benefit society as a whole. In other words, it brings real added value.