Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Last week's elections in The Netherlands

A round up of commentary on the Dutch elections last week (22 November) plus my own take:

Brussels Journal: Pat Buchanan wins Dutch elections
Kleinverzet: The Ghost of Pim Fortuyn

The elections saw the centre parties, Labour, Liberal-Conservatives, Democrats66 weakened.

On the sides maoist Socialist Party (SP) of Jan Marrijnissen and on the Right the Freedom Party (PVV) of Geert wilders gained seats. SP got 25 (+16) and Freedom Party got 9 (+9).

Brussels Journal goes deeper into the background of the winning Socialist Party. The SP is Anti-Europe and regards Western, Christian culture the bedrock of Dutch society.

Kleinverzet argues that the SP are Communists, who believe in the Leftist message that the State is the answer to all woes. By contrast the old Labour Party does not believe in its message anymore. Because the voters are looking for strong leaders, they vote for those who believe in their own message.

My take:
Brussels Journal and Kleinverzet are correct. SP is both hardline leftist and pro-Western, which is an unusual combination in the West, where most Leftist Parties are Multiculturalists and therefore Anti-Western. It is also a clear vote against the EU of the transnational elites and Eurabia.

The Anti-Immigrant and Anti-Islamic stance of the electorate is further made clear by the PVV of Geert Wilders gaining 9 seats. This is a remarkable result and shows the organisational acumen and ability of Geert Wilders to communicate with his voter base. There were two other Fortuynist remnants dating back to the 2002 elections which failed to gain enough votes for one (1) seat.

The gain of Wilders (former Liberal-Conservative VVD: party of Ayaan and Verdonk) is even more remarkable when we look at the number of votes Rita Verdonk got. 600.000! Out of slightly less than 10 million votes. She even got 60.000 more than Party leader Mark Rutte. Verdonk has a strong anti-immigrant and anti-Islam profile. 600.000 votes is sufficient for 9 seats, while VVD got 22. So more than a third of the voters of that party disagree with immigration and multiculturalism. The VVD will see instability in the years to come. Party leader Mark Rutte is not strong enough to lead the party and Verdonk simply lacks the talent to run a Anti-Multicultural political platform against the entire system. There will be good hunting grounds here for Geert Wilders. Henk Kamp, the current defense Minister and third man of the VVD may well be the man to get the ship out of the shallows and sailing again.

Under the present circumstances it will be difficult to put a coalition together for a government. The coalition that can be formed will be unstable and probably be under the leadership of Christian Democrat Balkenende, not a strong and capable political leader.

So expect new elections within 4 years. Invest in shares of companies selling voting booths or canned food or shotguns.


Yorkshireminer said...

Dear Snouke,
I couldn't agree with you more, the only quarrel I have with you is that I don't think that they will even be able to form a Government and I think that sometime in the new year it will be back to the electorate. Most people have put the emphasis on the monumental gains of the SP but I think it is more of a one man band like Pim's party and would quickly fade if anything happened to Marrijnissen. What has really happened is a very definite polarisation of the Electorate. The swing to the right was definitely more confused and I am sure Wilgers gained most of his votes because of the infighting between Vedonk and Rutte, political parties shouldn't wash there dirty wash in public especially before an election, they also gained the vote of Liefbaar Nederland Pim's old party where too many egos and not enough commonsense ruled. I think if Verdonk gets to run the VVD as she obviously wants to do then I can see that party making a lot more headway in the next election along with Wilgers, who is every bodies hate figure. There is definitely a sea change here in Europe we saw it in the Swedish elections and we will certainly see it in England where religious tensions are are definitely on the rise. The aboriginal population of which I call myself a member, although I now live here in The Nederlands, have certainly had enough of Islamic intimidation, and I can see the British Nationalist Party winning quiet a few seats in the next election.

Snouck said...

I agree with most of what you say, but obviously I do not share your optimism about Verdonk. She lacks political acumen. The struggle between the ambitious Verdonk and the old guard will tear the party and its voting base apart, which will be good for the only other player on the Right: Wilders.

Wilders needs time to build up a cadre and a financial base under his party, though. Too much success can be a mixed blessing, a curse even.



Yorkshireminer said...

Yes I think you might be right on second thoughts concerning Rita

Just a quick Question, the picture you use is that Lorentze, I don't know if I have spelt his name properly the famous Dutch Scientist from the early part of the last century?

Snouck said...

Yorkshire miner,

the picture is a picture of the actual Snouck Hurgronje, not of the natuurkundige Hendrik Lorentz.

are you the Yorkshire miner from the song by Spitting Image?



Yorkshireminer said...

Dear Snouk,

unfortunately not, I am a genuine Ex-Yorkshire Coal miner, I left school at 15 and went down the mines. I left about 10 years later when as Union President I was reading some report stating that 95% of miners didn't reached there pension age. I was suffering from Bronchitis attacks every year and thought it a good idea to get out, since then I have worked in Scandinavia several years in the Middle East a couple of years in India, and for the last 20 years have been living in big old house in a small village in Limburg with my books my delightful Dutch wife, my son and a rabbit. I consider myself a lucky man. I am sorry I mistook the picture for it reminded me very much of Photos I have seen of that great Dutch scientist. I have just read about Snouk on the internet. He reminds me of Sir Richard Burton an English Arabist who like Snouk went on the Hadji several years before. If you like you can down load his E-books free from Gutenberg.org they have by the way a very large selection on Dutch books the site is well worth a look. By the way you have got a great Blogg, I really enjoy it.

Deep regards

Yorkshire Miner

Snouck said...


During the Second WW the British government conscripted English miners. To work in the coal mines! The miners reckoned that they had a better chance of surviving in the Infantry than in the coal mines.

There are lots of coal mines in Limburg. Have you visited them?

Fishing was also such a hazardous profession.



Yorkshireminer said...

Dear Snouck,

I am afraid it wasn't quiet like that. Many miners were captured at Dunkirk and they made up a large percentage of certain Northern Regiments for example the D.L.I. (Durham Light Infantry) it certainly wasn't because they thought the Army preferable to working in the mines. The answer is far more mundane. Several years before World War II the Miners Union won a concession from the mine owners for two weeks holiday a year. The point was that they didn't get paid for it. Someone discovered that if you join the Territorial Army (The Army Reserve) you got paid for doing the training. What many miners did was join the Territorial Army and do the training during this two week holiday period, which meant that their families had enough to eat. When the war broke out they were immediately called up, stopped playing at soldiers and became real soldier and shipped off to Europe. During the fighting a lot of these Northern Regiment were in the rearguard at Dunkirk. When the evacuation was over these were left to there fate, along with the British Garrison at Calais.

I knew several of these men and heard many an interesting anecdote, one told me that the Germans quickly sorted out the miners from the rest by the simple expedient of checking if they had blue marks under the skin. This is quiet normal I have two on one arm, coal gets into untreated wounds and when the wound heals it leaves a black mark. Most of these ended up working in the mines in Poland. One told me that while working in the mines one of the German officials had a heart attack, he said that they put him in a tub filled it up with coal and sent him too the surface. He told me that they never heard anything more about it, so he doesn't know what happened to him.

As for conscription into the mines during the war it was quiet normal. When the war broke out the British Government passed a law which meant that they could direct any able bodied man between school leaving age and 60 into any industry they liked. Towards the end of 1943 when manpower for the army was less acute a certain percentage of the annual army intake was directed to go and work in the mines. They were called Bevin Boys after the minister of labour at that time. This was done by ballot, so you had the sons of the aristocracy and the middle class working alongside the old miners that were left.

Another interesting footnote that you might be interested in is that after the war, The Polish Brigade which had fought along side the British army is such battles as Arnham and Monte Cassino where offered the choice of either going back to Poland or staying in Britain if they stayed in Britain they had to work where they were directed there were many Polish mine workers in my village and I grew up with there kids, for most married local girls.

As for visiting the Coal mines in Limburg the answer is no, they were all closed when I arrived here . I have taken my son to a mock up mine in Valkenburg but it doesn't quiet capture the essence of a mine there was none of the fog like dust, noise and the smell of sweat horse shit and urine, that I remember.

Yes you are right fishing is a dangerous profession it is the only other industry in Britain apart from coal mining where trained workmen are allowed to give morphine injections, but what a great relaxation to sit on a river bank on a sharp spring day drowning maggots and drinking a nice bottle of beer.

Ferdy said...

Hi Snouke,

Just wanted to let you know that I agree with you on Verdonk.

Although I would say she is not only incompetent, which she clearly is, but she is also very opportunistic. For her it's just about power. Not that power is bad, a politician need power to function. But the problem is, she does not believe in her own message. For her, the message is just a means to gain power. To me that explains her very, very strange behavior.