Monday, October 04, 2010

Attacking the squatter movement head on

Check the picture here for better focus.

Weak protection of property rights

More than a month ago I wrote about the weakness of the protection of property rights in The Netherlands, especially in Amsterdam. Now this blog will feature an article on the improvement in the protection of property rights.

You see, since the late 1960ies it had been so that squatters who took over someone's real estate would receive more protection from the courts and police than the owner of the property. If the owner would try to take back the property the squatters would be able to call the police and the courts would convict owners for the use of violence against people in their own house. The police would seldomly come to evict the squatters, as long as the squatters limited themselves to squatting in houses which had been unoccupied for half a year or longer.

Rolling back the squatter movement

With the Fortuyn revolt in 2001, which was copiously supported by real estate developers the squatter tide started to recede. Early in 2010 legislation was enacted that would make squatting illegal again and which in effect would give property owners the power of the police to get their property back if it was occupied without his consent. The legislation went into effect on 1 October 2010.

Evicting squatters

Today in Amsterdam the new legislation made itself felt. The riot squad of the police evicted squatters from occupied houses in the Spuistraat in Amsterdam. The squatters had demonstrated a few days before. The demonstration had turned into a riot and pavements, windows and cars had been damaged. More importantly two policemen and a squatter were injured. The major of Amsterdam, Eberhard van der Laan, announced that the squatters would have to pay the damage, including the health bills of the policemen.


After 1968 most of the Western world went off the rails. The knowledge of Good and Evil was surpressed. Damage to our societies is immense. One society worst hit by the progressive wave was The Netherlands. The return to the protection of property rights is one indication that our society is on the way back to sanity, one step at the time. Let us hope that more many more steps will follow!

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