Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

Dutch explanations

Yesterday’s blog on the 2023 Dutch general election did not include any explanation. Today’s blog will. The main explanation is anger of Dutch voters towards PM Mark Rutte. Hence, all four parties that supported Rutte have lost votes: -24% (abs), -47% (rel), and -36 seats.

This anger includes many topics, apart from the number of migrants and refugees. For me, it includes healthcare policies (eg, Covid-19, # hospitals), nitrogen, electric vehicle subsidies, electricity infrastructure, priorities on cities, and the lack of a rural focus (eg, less public transport).

Rutte’s successor is a Kurdish female, who did surprisingly well. Her “mistake” was to make (i) the number of migrants and refugees a political priority, and (ii) accepting Geert Wilders as a potential coalition partner. As a result, Geert Wilders changed his attitude (ie, Geert “Milders”).

I didn’t vote for Geert Wilders and probably never will. In my view, he has extreme nationalist views. His change in attitude is probably only temporary. Nevertheless, his extreme win (+118% and +20 seats) was a big surprise; also to me. I had expected that Rutte’s successor would win.

On 30 May 2023, the new Farmer Citizen Movement won 16 of the 75 seats (21%) in the Dutch Senate election. This was an early warning to Rutte-4 following the massive angry farmer protests. The outcome of 22 November should be viewed as a public middle finger to Rutte-4 (eg, source).

Anger is the second of the five phases in processing grief. The surprising election results may be viewed as bargaining, the third phase. The fourth and fifth phase of the Kübler-Ross model are depression and acceptance. The first phase, denial, is behind us now.

“Angry voters are more willing to support candidates who vilify their opponents and find easy scapegoats. Talking heads have become shouting heads. Many Americans have grown cynical about our collective ability to solve our problems. And that cynicism has become a self-fulfilling prophecy, as nothing gets solved.”

A quote by Robert B. Reich, an American professor and former U.S. Secretary of Labor

Angry (2023) by the Rolling Stones
band, lyrics, video, Wikiband, Wiki-song

Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless in quotes or stated otherwise.


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