Sunday, June 13, 2010

No place for anti-Islamic party in a Dutch government


F*ck Racism, originally uploaded by CharlesFred.

The election took place on Wednesday and the Queen appointed someone to investigate the possibilities of putting together a coalition. On advice from most of the parties, it seems that he will start looking at the possibility of trying to form a coalition between the biggest party (VVD - right wing liberals) and PVV (anti-Islamic populist party), the PVV having been the big winner going up from 9 to 24 seats. Between them, they have 55 seats, so a good 20 away from the 76 needed for a majority. So, even if they can agree amongst themselves, to form a government, they will have to find another party or two to join them.

The other bigger party to the right of centre is the CDA, Christian Democrat party, which lost 20 seats to go from 41 to 21. So, before one starts having an opinion about whether a party losing out so much should become part of the next government, and whether it would even be good for the party to be in government, rather than wait in the sidelines/opposition while they re-form, they need to think whether they could ever work with such a party as PVV. A party which is anti-democratic (it has no members) and a party which reduces every argument to one of anti-Islam and anti-immigration.

In Belgium, where they had a similar phenomon with Vlaams Blok, the other parties put a cordon sanitaire around the party and refused to work with it. This was sen to be counter-productive in the end, so I think the Dutchj want to avoid this. Better to look for a way to work together and then point out afterwards why they cannot - i.e. such a party is based on creating fear and hatred towards another part of society and is a party without anything helpful to add to the political debate and development of the country.

So, when we read that the VVD and CDA are looking perhaps to work with P{VV, we have to think about how much they are just going through the motion, to give the impression of working together, and how much they really do think they can work together. I am hoping it is the former.

Despite all the noise created by the PVV and the media which goes along with it all, only 16% of the voters voted for PVV, and these seem to be mainly disaffected voters in the mainly Catholic south of the country. If you link up two other parties, which have similar-ish sort of views, such as SP and Groen Links you already ahve 25 seats, which is more than the 24 of the PVV. Put together PvdA and Groen Links and D66 and you have 51 seats, more than twice as much as PVV and enough to form an (albeit difficult) coalition with VVD, which would be known as Paars Plus = Purple Plus. I think that this is where we will end up and I hope than by the time we get there, we will have fully exposed the PVV for what it really is

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