Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

A Dutch lesson for Germany

The outcome of the German (federal) general elections mirrors the Dutch one of 15 March 2017 in several ways: (i) huge success for a radical nationalist party, (ii) punishment for the governing center political parties, and (iii) a refusal of the Social Democrats for a new coalition government. The Netherlands still has no government despite negotiating with 4 to 5 parties for 195 days. Germany may face a similar challenge.

The root cause for the duration of the Dutch – and future German – negotiations is the different view of political parties based on Christianity and Liberalism. Therefore, I am still not optimistic about the Dutch negotiations. Liberal parties feel restricted – in the freedom of individuals – by the clear views of Christian parties on society as a whole.

Social Democrats were more likely to accept Christian political parties as their views on the role of the State did not collide. However, political parties on the left (and right) more and more embrace the concept of personal Liberalism or Libertarianism. This explains the surge in Alt-Left and Alt-Right movements. This concept of personal Liberalism (or Libertarianism) often conflicts with Christian philosophies (eg, healthcare, self-determination).

The Dutch Social Democrats still refuse to govern which makes sense – up to a point. The German Social Democrats may be more pragmatic and may just be increasing their future leverage, when German (federal) coalition negotiations will have failed.

The surge of a German nationalist party is no surprise given what happened all across Europe. For several years, this party will not be stable as it contains at least 2 competing views. A future break-up may bring them below the 5% threshold again. Nationalist parties all around Europe also lack eloquent and intelligent spokespersons, like Dutch professor and politician Pim Fortuyn, who was murdered in 2002.

Recently, Donald Trump was condemned for blaming the Alt-Left and Alt-Right for the riots in Charlottesville, Virginia. Some American left-liberals even dispute whether the Alt-Left exist (eg, Wired). We may not like what Trump has to say but sometimes he does have a point. In Europe, the anarchists have found a new home in the Alt-Left. They were responsible for various riots, including the recent G20 riots in Hamburg (eg, FPReutersZero Hedge).

Today, nationalist parties are blamed for many things. Blaming others is often a part of a process called Denial. I’m not that sure which radical view is more dangerous: left-Libertarianism (Alt-Left) or right-Libertarianism (Alt-Right). Probably, it’s again a choice between the arrogance of the Left and the ignorance of the Right.

If a society cannot meaningfully and safely absorb immigrants and serious criticism is smothered, then the Alt-Left and the Alt-Right will tear society apart.

Haus am See (2008) by Peter Fox – artist, lyrics DE-UK, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2


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