Netherlands Vol.4 (Coalition)

Excerpts are on our own.

People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (@VVD)
Christian Democratic Appeal (CDA; @cdavandaag)
Democrats 66 (@D66)
ChristianUnion (@christenunie)

The polarised nature of the Dutch party system and the volatility of the electorate ensure that any ‘victory for the centre’ is likely to be short-lived.

Dutch parties agree coalition government after a record 208 days (09/10/2017) | Jon Henley @guardian

Dutch coalition partners agree on government deal, seek party backing (09/10/2017) | Cynthia Kroet @politico

Dutch coalition government formed after seven months of talks (10/10/2017) | @rte

NEW DUTCH GOV’T AGREEMENT “AMBITIOUS AND BALANCED”: PM RUTTE (10/10/2017) | Janene Pieters @NL_Times

Rutte forms Dutch government 208 days after election (10/10/2017) | Mehreen Khan @ft
… likely to side with Germany in many aspects of eurozone reform, in a blow to French …
… will shift rightward after Dutch Labour, a previous coalition partner …
… support for a eurozone budget …

Dutch Move Closer to New Government After Longest Coalition Talks Since WWII (10/10/2017) | Joost Akkermans @bpolitics

Trust in the future: the coalition agreement main points


Income
… cutting the number of tax bands from four to two from 2019
… earning 40,000 by 1,200 a year, but middle and high earners will benefit most. …
… 37% on earnings up to ?68,000 and 49.5% for all income above that. …
Work and benefits
… Freelancers will have to earn at least ?15-?18 an hour to be classed as self-employed …
Paid paternity leave to be extended from two to five days in 2019 …
Child benefits will go up by a total of 1bn …
Mortgages
… will be reduced in four stages of 3%, so that by 2023, home owners will be limited to a 37% deduction. …
… Home owners who still have a mortgage to pay an extra tax (eigenwoningforfait) every year …
Asset tax
… increasing the tax-free limit from ?25,000 to ?30,000. …
Other taxes
Employers
… cut the basic rates of corporation tax from 25% to 21% while a tax rate of 16% will be levied over the first 200,000 in profits …
Employers with up to 25 members of staff will only have to pay one year of sick pay, rather than two, as at present …
The 15% tax paid by firms on the dividends they pay out to shareholders will go in an effort to make the Netherlands more attractive to foreign firms …
Refugees
Education
Healthcare
Crime
Climate
Other measures

Dutch Tax Reform: Reduction in Corporate Tax Rate and Abolishment of Dividend Tax (13/10/2017) | Wouter Paardekooper @bakermckenzie @lexology

Highlights from Dutch Parties’ Coalition Agreement

The new coalition loves him, so just who is the ‘normal, ordinary Dutchman’? (13/10/2017) | @Expatica

The Dutch government confirms plan to ban new petrol and diesel cars by 2030 (10/10/2017) | @FredericLambert @ElectrekCo

Netherlands announces pension reform that would move country to a DC system (11/10/2017) | PAULINA PIELICHATA @pensionsnews

After 200 Days of Negotiations, Netherlands Forms Government But Excludes Populist Wilders (11/10/2017) | Chris Tomlinson @BreitbartNews

Are drawn-out Dutch coalition talks a harbinger of tough days ahead for Germany? (28/09/2017) | @thelocalgermany
… Rutte’s business-friendly Liberal VVD, the progressive D66 and two Christian parties, the pragmatic CDA and more conservative Christian Union.
Formed in the swinging 1960s, D66 is pro-abortion, pro-gay and lesbian rights and wants the country’s euthanasia programme to be extended so all people – not just the terminally ill – can decide to end their lives.
The Christian Union bases its policies on the Bible and opposes abortion, same-sex marriages and euthanasia. …

Dutch coalition talks have not yet touched on the future of Europe

DUTCH VOTERS SHOW LITTLE ENTHUSIASM FOR STILL-FORMING NEW DUTCH GOVT: STUDY (19/09/2017) | Janene Pieters @NL_Times

Dutch coalition talks collapse again (24/05/2017) | PETER TEFFER @euobs

Why the Dutch need three months to form a government (30/03/2017) | Nik Martin @dw
… Since World War II, Dutch governments have taken an average of 72 days to be decided, compared to four to six weeks for a typical German coalition. The Dutch record is nearly seven months in 1977…
… environmental concerns, income inequality and a more humane refugee policy.
GreenLeft is likely to be offered the ministry of environment portfolio and could win extra cash for green innovation, said Koole. But its would-be coalition partners are unlikely to concede on the latter two issues, having spent the election campaign trying to outdo Wilders’ hard-line on immigration, along with promises to reduce public spending.
“If GreenLeft enters a coalition with the right-wing parties, it could meet the same fate as the Labour party, which lost enormously in this election because voters saw it participating with a mainly right-wing government,” Koole said. …

Dutch election results at a glance (16/03/2017) | @JuliaRampenMM @NewStatesman

3 biggest Dutch election myths (13/03/2017) | NAOMI O’LEARY @POLITICOEurope

What’s at stake in the Netherlands’ elections? (13/03/2017) | Jan van der Made @RFI

What to expect from the Dutch elections in six charts (10/02/2017) | Aleksandra Wisniewska & Billy Ehrenberg-Shannon @ft

Too many parties and not enough influence spotlighted in political system report

cf.
Going Dutch (11/10/2017) | Darrell Delamaide @handelsblatt
… Belgium, managed to go 541 days without a new government after the 2010 election. …

Dutch mayors don’t like the idea of being chosen by public vote (04/10/2017) | @Expatica

King’s speech forecasts ‘flourishing economy’ for the Netherlands (19/09/2017) | @BelTel

Interview – Shell Netherlands CEO: More large wind projects wanted (05/10/2017) | Toby Sterling & Stefano Berra @reuters


Easter 2017

Here are articles on Easter. Excerpts are on our own.

The Economics Of Easter (4/12/2017) | Rutger Bloemenkarr @The_MarketMogul   … According to @NRFnews’s annual Easter Spending Survey, which surveyed 7411 American customers about their Easter Sunday plans at the beginning of March, the total amount that is expected to be spent in the US is $18.4bn in 2017, which is approximately $152 dollar a person. This is considered to be the highest amount in 14 years, up by about 6% compared to 2016. …consumers are expected to spend $5.8bn on food, $3.3bn on clothes, $2.9bn on gifts, $2.6bn on candy, $1.2bn on flowers, $1.1bn on decorations, and $788mn on greeting cards. … The majority of Americans, about 58% to precise, visit discount stores to purchase their gift of preference, while the remainder visit department stores (46%), local stores (26%), or online stores (27%). … Almost two out of three Americans (61%) will visit their family and/or friends for Easter, 57% will cook a holiday-oriented meal, a majority visit church (52%), and a small portion go to a restaurant (17%). Additionally, more than one-third of the consumers surveyed (35%) are expected to have a so-called Easter egg hunt. Lastly, 16%…  According to @smallbiztrends…

Easter in Canada | @dgreetings   … – Eggs are forbidden during Lent but after fasting they are consumed mixed with maple syrup. Also special Easter passion plays and songs are performed at the major theatres and community halls of the major cities of Canada.    – A typical Canadian Easter is characterized by its mouthwatering and sumptuous recipes of ‘Maple Baked Beans’, ‘Potatoes Nicoise’, ‘Cape Breton Scones’ and apple tart. Thus, Easter in Canada is an event worth enjoying for its wide festive activities.

The Easter Egg Hunt, the Economy and the New Game (6/4/2015) | @LearntSchool @HuffPostUK   … @charliehoehn,@FreeRangeHumans,@ajjuliani …

Britain to benefit from 1.8 per cent boost to economy this Easter:  BRITAIN’S economy will grow by 1.8 per cent this year according to upgraded forecasts from the EY ITEM Club, thanks to a recovery in global trade. (9/4/2017) | Geoff Ho @Daily_Express    Easter: Quarter of UK Christians do not believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, survey reveals (11/4/2017)     Irish business owners urged to be vigilant this Easter (13/4/2017) | Robert McHugh @BusinessWorldIE

Canberra’s experts divided over economics of Easter holidays (10/4/2017) | @DavidTuckwell3 @The_RiotACT   … According to @CBRBusiness, the territory’s top business lobby, the effect can be negative as public holidays mean penalty rates, and penalty rates mean unemployment. “Generally speaking, penalty rates on public holidays make businesses think staying open on a public holiday is just not viable,”… “Some businesses – particularly small businesses – look at their cost of operation compared to potential income and think it’s not commercially viable to open.” … “The problem with this entire penalty rates debate is the ‘fallacy of composition’,” says @MattGrudnoff, an economist at @TheAusInstitute, a left-leaning think tank based in Civic. … According to Professor Phil Lewis, an economist at @UniCanberra, there are both moral and economic considerations to keep in mind. “If you have a public holiday, employers who pay the award will be obliged to pay $45 an hour for a person on the lowest wage. …some businesses will stay open, especially family-owned businesses, as family members won’t demand penalty rate…

Retailers baffled by Easter trading laws (11/4/2017) | Matthew Theunissen @nzherald   … A recent law change gave local councils the authority to permit Easter Sunday trading and 25 mostly smaller councils have so far taken up the option. … Five councils have continued with the the ban while all major centres are yet to reach decisions. Shops which open in the restricted areas risk a prosecution and $1000 fine. … There are exemptions to the Easter trading laws, and some of them are quite unusual. Dunedin’s Carnegie Centre has an exemption to sell arts, crafts, children’s toys and books on Easter Sunday. “Toys and books sold only while performances happening on the mezzanine floor,”… In Nelson, crafts can be sold “whenever Founders Park is open”. @nelsoncitynz has been approached for clarification on whether this means any shop can sell crafts while the park is open, or only shops within the park. A clearer definition of “crafts” was also sought from the council. … Other exemptions include dairies, service stations, takeaways, bars, restaurants and cafes, duty-free stores and shops providing services rather than selling goods, such as a hairdresser. … The industry had fought hard to get the exemption and Odering could not understand why it didn’t include Friday, too. … Since 1992, Odering said the his business had paid in excess of $20,000 in fines, Department of Labour Fees and court costs because they had refused to shut shop over Easter. @RetailNZ spokesman… @MBIEgovtnz data shows that prosecutions for shops illegally opening over Easter steadily declined from 63 in 2006, to 34 in 2008, 28 in 2010, 25 in 2012, 0 in 2014 and 3 in 2016. …

Easter to bring a million foreign tourists to Netherlands (4/13/2017) | Janene Pieters   About 950 thousand foreign tourists will spend Easter weekend in the Netherlands, according to calculations by @NBTC. “It is expected to be very busy”, a spokesperson said to @NOS. “In comparison with last year, we expect 100 thousand more tourists.” Most foreign visitors come from Germany, about 600 thousand. And over 200 thousand Belgians are expected to visit this weekend. …increasing since 2009… Last year 15.8 million foreigners visited our country. This can partly be attributed to the recovering economy in Europe and America. And due to the weak euro, it is relatively cheap for non-euro countries to visit the Netherlands on holiday. The threat of terrorist attacks in European cities such as Paris and Brussels also…

Norwegian Easter Traditions   … In old times, people would climb mountains on Easter Sunday morn to watch the sunrise as they thought the sun danced with joy for the resurrection of Christ.  It is suggested that this could have started the Norwegian habit of ‘going up the mounatins’ at Easter time.  This day was also a day to predict the weather for the Summer.  If it was a good day then the Summer would be good too.  If there was frost the night before the Sunday then the Summer would come late.  For some reason, the Bunad is not worn during Easter. Easter Sunday breakfast is a grand affair.  Anything and everything is put on the table, cured meats and especially eggs – boiled, scrambled, fried, (and even fish eggs!), you name it.  The boiled eggs are often dyed or painted before eating.  Traditionally the Winter stores are low from the long Winter, so there is not much cooking or baking, especially compared to Christmas time.  However, egg dishes are in abundance, especially when there has been a lot of egg decorating with lots of leftover whites and yolks.  Pancakes are also a popular treat at Easter. … The Easter egg hunt is a common tradition around the world and in Norway children look for a brightly decorated paper eggshell filled with small lollies.  The eggs used to be real chicken eggs…

Easter | @denmarkdotdk   …most Danes regard Easter as a holiday. A national survey in 2000 showed that 48% of the Danes attached particular importance to the family spending time together during Easter and 37% regarded it as a holiday; only 10% mentioned ‘attending Church’ and ‘the Christian message’ as the main feature of Easter. … Many homes and shops are decorated for Easter in green and yellow, especially with new-leaved branches and daffodils. The main symbol of Easter is still the egg. The eggs used for decoration may be ordinary hen’s eggs which have been blown out and coloured or they may be imitation eggs or various kinds of sugar and chocolate eggs. Other decorations include small artificial hens and chickens and gradually also the Easter hare, which formerly was almost exclusively common in the areas by the German border. There is a unique Danish Easter tradition, viz. the custom of sending teaser letters. In the weeks before Easter especially children cut out elaborate letters, on which they write a so-called teaser verse. The letter is anonymous, but signed with a number of dots corresponding to the number of letters in the sender’s name, so that the recipient has a chance of guessing who sent it. The pledge is a chocolate Easter egg redeemed at Easter. The letter is accompanied by a snowdrop, which is regarded as the first flower of the year. …

Easter in Sweden (4/12/2017) | @Sweden_Belgrade   …most people celebrate it at home with their families and relatives. … Nowadays, eggs are a favourite accompaniment to the dish of pickled herring that is the centrepiece of most Swedes’ Easter meals. And few associate the omnipresent birch twigs − nowadays decorated with brightly coloured feathers − with the suffering of Christ. Easter has its own rituals. Children dress up as Easter witches; clad in discarded clothes, gaily coloured headscarves and red-painted cheeks, they go from house to house in the neighbourhood and present the occupants with paintings and drawings in the hope of getting sweets in return. Having consumed all these sweets, they are then given Easter eggs filled with yet more. … A traditional Easter lunch is likely to consist of different varieties of pickled herring, cured salmon and Jansson’s Temptation (potato, onion and pickled anchovies baked in cream). … At dinner, people eat roast lamb with potato gratin and asparagus, or some other suitable side dish.


Netherlands Vol.3 (general election 15/3/2017)

Here is a part of information on the Dutch general election 2017. Excerpts are on our own.

The House of Representatives (The Second Chamber) – 150 members; proportional representation

@epc_eu
NL2017election1
@EuropeElects
NL2017election2
NL2017election3

One image perfectly captures why populists didn’t win the Dutch election (3/16/2017) | @aamnamohdin @qz
…unlike in the US and Britain, the Netherlands is not a winner-takes-all system. …

What future for the Netherlands: do Dutch brace for more political instability? (3/7/2017) | @VoteWatchEurope
NL2017election4
NL2017election5

Electoral Systems – The Netherlands | Brechtje Beun & Galen Irwin

THE NETHERLANDS – EARLY PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS – 9 June 2010 (PDF; 3/29-31/2010) | @OSCE
Page: 3
A. BACKGROUND AND POLITICAL CONTEXT
The Kingdom of Netherlands is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of government. It consists of 12 provinces, the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba. The Netherlands, the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba conduct their internal affairs autonomously and pursue their common interests on a basis of equality. The Head of State is Queen Beatrix, in power since 1980. The Netherlands, Netherlands Antilles and Aruba elect their own independent parliaments and have their own executive branches.
The parliament of the Netherlands (Staten Generaal) is bicameral with a first chamber (Eerste Kamer) comprising of 75 members indirectly elected by 12 provincial assemblies and a second chamber (Tweede Kamer) consisting of 150 members directly elected for a four-year term. The executive branch of government is formed by the Council of
Ministers, headed by the Prime Minister. The Council of Ministers is appointed and dismissed by the monarch.
Page: 5
C. ELECTORAL AND VOTING SYSTEM
Members of the second chamber of parliament are elected through a proportional list system in a single nationwide constituency without a legal threshold. The Netherlands is divided into 19 electoral districts for administration of the elections only; all votes cast for candidates in each district are combined during the tabulation of results. However, the system provides for preferential voting, as each voter votes for a particular candidate. It is only through the candidate chosen that a vote is attributed to the respective electoral list.
The number of seats allocated to each candidate list is determined by dividing the total number of votes cast by 150 (number of mandates in the second chamber of parliament) to determine the electoral quota. Once the allocation of seats to parties has been determined, the names of the elected candidates are specified in accordance with the numbers of votes cast for each candidate. This procedure begins from the top of the list and moves down until the party’s entitlement to seats is filled. However, a candidate who obtains at least 25 per cent of the electoral quota is declared elected automatically regardless of his or her number on the list.
D. ELECTION ADMINISTRATION
Elections in the Netherlands are administered by a three-tiered, decentralized structure. This includes the Electoral Council (EC), 19 Principal Electoral Committees (PEC), and some 10,000 Electoral Committees which act as polling stations. The MoIKR and municipal executives also play an important role in the organization of an election. The second chamber of parliament is responsible to certify its own final results.
Page: 6
The 431 individual municipalities each have at least one electoral committee. The approximately 10,000 electoral committees consist of a chair and between two and six members, together with sufficient number of alternates. Electoral committees are not permanent bodies and are appointed by the municipal executive. They are responsible for
carrying out the election on election day.
The MoIKR oversees the overall conduct of elections at national level. It establishes the regulations and appoints the 19 PEC members for parliamentary elections, the 431 mayors and the heads of local government administration. At a local level municipal executives are responsible for administering elections, for maintaining computerized voter registers, and for distributing voter registration cards. The municipal executive also decides the location of polling stations and compiles all the results for the municipality.

cf. Netherlands Provincial elections 2015 | @welections
Per province – 12 September 2012 | @nlverkiezingen
NL2017election6-provincies


LatAm Vol.5 (Guyana, Suriname & French Guiana)


UK Vol.46 (EUref (academic/analytical) articles/podcasts: “Bremain”? “Brexit”? – UK’s Referendum on EU Membership)

Here is just a part of (academic/analytical) articles/papers/videos/podcasts concerning the Brexit/Bremain on Twitter: universities (the United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, Canada and the United States), think tanks (Continental Europe), et al.

[Universities]

@Cambridge_Uni

@CambridgeNewsUK

@Politics_Oxford

@UniofOxford

@LSEEcon

@ConUnit_UCL

@KingsCollegeLon

@WarwickBSchool

@DurhamLawSchool

@cranfieldmngmt

@UniOfSurrey

@UniofBathIPR

@BristolUni

Manchester @MBSnews

@unibirmingham

@UniofExeter

(@UniofNottingham)

@unisouthampton

@sheffielduni

(@UniofReading)

Leicester @UoLNewsCentre

@lancasterarts

@UniWestminster

(@Uni_of_Essex)

@SussexUni

@imperialcollege

@QMUL

(@RoyalHolloway)

(@GoldsmithsUoL)

London Business School @LBS

@UoLondon

@CityUniLondon

(@StirManSchool)

@lborouniversity

@UniKent

@BradfordUniSIS

@YorkAlumni

@uniofeastanglia

@UniofNewcastle

@UniversityLeeds

@livuninews

(@univofstandrews)

(@UofGlasgow)

@EdinburghUni

@aberdeenuni

(@dundeeuni)

@cardiffuni

(Aberystwyth @AberUni)

@QueensUBelfast

@tcddublin

UCDDublin @UCDLawSchool

@AucklandUni

(@unimelb)

Melbourne @Government_UoM

(@ANU_Law)

@ArtSS_Sydney

Toronto @UofT_PolSci

(Toronto @munkschool)

@UBCSauderSchool

@UBC

Harvard @Kennedy_School

@Harvard_Law

@YaleSOM

@YaleGlobal

@PrincetonBCF

(Princeton @WilsonSchool)

@StanfordCISAC

Stanford @SIEPR

(@MIT)

@UChicago

@UCBerkeley

[Think tanks]

@clingendael83

@EUforumnl

@DufasNL

(@EBNtweets)

@IES_Brussels

@EgmontInstitute

@robert_schuman

@BStBrussels

@IFRI_/

@epc_eu

(@FriendsofEurope)

(@sauvonsleurope)

(@InstSobieskiego)

@EuropesWorld

@esharpmag

@fleishmanEU

(@ECFRBerlin)

@SWPBerlin

@SpinelliGroup

@EuroInstituteDC

@USCC_Europe

@viEUws

@CFMUK @voxeu @cepr_org

@FTI_SC

[Others]

@William_Bain

@BIUK_Finance

@TheEconomist

@TheEconomist

@annemcelvoy @ZannyMB @TheEconomist

Roderick Abbott @wef

@plegrain @ProSyn

Harold James @ProSyn

Simon Johnson @ProSyn

@plegrain @ProSyn @CEP_LSE

@guydej1 @ECIPE