Brussels: What the People Vote Down, the Elite Brings Back
From the desk of Paul Belien on Mon, 2007-12-10 22:46
Today, on the 183rd day after last June’s Belgian elections, Belgium’s King Albert II asked outgoing Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt to form a new government. Mr Verhofstadt lost the elections on 10 June. The people voted him down, but the King brought him back. Verhofstadt is like the European Constitution. The people voted it down, and the EU brought it back.
A quote from Euronews, 10 December 2007
As had been widely expected, Belgium's caretaker Prime Minister, Guy Verhofstadt has been officially asked by the King to form an emergency government to break the country's political crisis.
A quote from the French press agency AFP, 10 December 2007
If agreed quickly, the interim cabinet could spare Belgium the inglorious fate of setting a new European record in early January for the longest period without a new government, topping the Netherlands' best of 208 days in 1977.
@ marcfrans & USAntigoon
Submitted by traveller on Wed, 2007-12-12 16:10.
One guess, Lee lives in Australia which is a BIG country.
Merry Christmas to you both.
Submitted by USAntigoon on Wed, 2007-12-12 14:24.
Thanks for the correction."Petit Pays=Petit Esprit" is also applicable to him I guess...Particularly the latter...Anyway...
Have a Merry Christmas...
p.s same for you Mr. Lee
Not so # 3
Submitted by marcfrans on Wed, 2007-12-12 04:24.
@ US Antigoon
A correction is in order. My earlier speculation about 'Lee' was a bit premature. While I suitably hedged it ("Based on limited observation, I suspect etc....") I was misled by one particular earlier one of his foul-language missiles. It looks now more likely that he is indeed a 'Flemish' Belgian living abroad (like you and me) and who imagines himself to be a 'citizen of the world'. Let's hope that he is actually as 'broadminded' as he thinks he is. Although, his choice of words suggests something very different, and as to the quality of his 'analysis'.....well, you and Traveller have already commented on that.
Submitted by traveller on Tue, 2007-12-11 10:09.
For a better understanding of the backgrounds:
Belgium created a social welfare system in which the unions are related to one specific political party and it is the unions which pay the jobless peoples support payments. The medicare and health insurance system payments are also executed by organisations related each to one political party.
For this "work" the health insurance organisations and the unions receive an administration "commission" of 7%.
Do you think the unions want to stop this? The walloon jobless bring an enormous income to the unions. The flemish unions, which are socialist at heart, would lose serious financial income in an independent Flanders. They are the champions of the status quo.
Lee, read your history
Submitted by Frodo42 on Tue, 2007-12-11 10:07.
The reason the Flemish have a good claim to their own state is that they already form a 'nation', in the sense of having commong language, culture & history. They were forced into freshly created Belgium in 1830 onwards, and any opposition was routinely destroyed. Remember, this was before democracy and civil rights - the king could just have it done.
Also, these people you call 'extremists' aren't that. They're 'separatists' and use no violence.
Check "Der Winter's"...
Submitted by Lee on Tue, 2007-12-11 11:31.
favourites about the history of the former/late century and then come back to me Mr/Ms Frodo.
That FYI resumes today's facts. If you happen wanting to talk/lecture me about a history check: please try me, by all means.
The world is my village since I look at it from outside of Euroland. Regards.
Multi Kulti KIds
Submitted by atheling on Wed, 2007-12-12 17:13.
"The world is my village since I look at it from outside of Euroland"
Ah, it takes a village idiot...
Thanks guys (& MKKids).
Submitted by Lee on Thu, 2007-12-13 01:58.
Have a fine Chrimbo all of you too.
Cheers, keep on full alert, watching the borders of Fortress Flanders.
Not so # 2
Submitted by marcfrans on Tue, 2007-12-11 04:42.
@ US Antigoon
While 'Lee' should understand what is going on in Belgium, he obviously doesn't. Based on limited past observation, I suspect that 'Lee' (who should not be confused with the American commentator Frank Lee on this website) apparently is an 'Ollander' from the old school. My impression is that he still carries a massive superiority complex vis-a-vis Flemish people, which suggests that he must be of a 'certain' age (perhaps my age). His lack of understanding of the common interests of Dutch-speakers within the EU is simply astounding. On the other hand, his utterly moronic reference to "ETA and IRA" suggests such a level of ignorance about European conditions generally, that one must assume him to be a very young person. Whatever the case may be, his comment is nonsensical and devoid of understanding of 'Belgian' conditions.
@ Zen Master
You misunderstand. The Flemish left does not pursue "francophone goals" as such. It thinks that it is pursuing socialist goals of "solidarity". But it is mistaken. It is simply perpetuating bad government, rather than acting "socially". Perhaps the best way to explain, so that outsiders could understand, would be to make the comparison with 'old-style' American Democrats (capital D!), i.e. before the welfare reforms of the mid 1990's, who believed that the Great-Society programs were helping the poor (instead of trapping them). The Flemish left is not nationalist, but rather naive-leftist. It does not want self-government for the Flemish people. It generally believes in the old marxist rethoric of class struggle domestically, and is extremely naive about political and cultural conditions in the rest of the world.
The reason why the Flemish do not have the "upper hand" is that its education system is not producing proud people but rather leftist selfhaters of their own culture. By contrast, francophones are first French, before they consider themselves left-or-right. One can observe something similar in Canada. Flemish people, just like Americans generally, do not present a common front to 'the-rest-of-the-world'. Many other cultures are not like that. They have fewer illusions about being 'citizens of the world'.
Submitted by Lee on Wed, 2007-12-12 03:34.
[Quote] "While 'Lee' should understand what is going on in Belgium, he obviously doesn't. Based on limited past observation, I suspect that 'Lee' (who should not be confused with the American commentator Frank Lee on this website) apparently is an 'Ollander' from the old school. My impression is that he still carries a massive superiority complex vis-a-vis Flemish people, which suggests that he must be of a 'certain' age (perhaps my age). His lack of understanding of the common interests of Dutch-speakers within the EU is simply astounding. On the other hand, his utterly moronic reference to "ETA and IRA" suggests such a level of ignorance about European conditions generally, that one must assume him to be a very young person. Whatever the case may be, his comment is nonsensical and devoid of understanding of 'Belgian' conditions."[/quote].
Care factor = zero.
But don't give up on your daily job, as the 'analysis' of my person, through your crystal ball indeed is a tad anal.
Submitted by USAntigoon on Tue, 2007-12-11 03:38.
I don't believe that you can compare ETA and IRA with some "Flemish extremists".. Are you Belgian.. or have you lived in Belgium is so then you should understand what is going on and what the history has given to the "Flemish"
USAntigoon? Aye, aye on both
Submitted by Lee on Tue, 2007-12-11 11:35.
Aye, aye on both questions. But no longer a resident of old Europe. Been there [too long] seen that...
Petit pays = petit esprit. Making it smaller will also make the spirit smaller.
Anyone has a magnifying glass? Cheers.
Submitted by traveller on Tue, 2007-12-11 13:33.
Petit pays=petit esprit seems to be working all right for Denmark, Luxemburg, Norway, Sweden. Of course they don't have the benefit of the colossal French culture of state control and state socialism but Wallonia will continue having that advantage.
Mr. Lee, I am very sorry, but you have no clue about the Flemish potential which, once liberated from french-style socialism will explode into economic progression.
Expect to see new 21st century "cathedrals".
@ marcfrans: I think the Flemish will defeat the leftists
Submitted by Zen Master on Tue, 2007-12-11 02:15.
Do you have an idea as to the percent who follow the francophone goals? I still think the Flemish will control the Belgian budget by withholding taxes.
Who will pay additional taxes to pay for the Walloon’s missing welfare payments? My money is on the Flemish making the Walloons and francophones back down.
Ira failed, not? Eta is
Submitted by Lee on Tue, 2007-12-11 02:11.
Ira failed, not?
Eta is not winning anytime soon, is it?
So why do some Belgians, mostly extremist Flemings, think that the separist path is the way to go?
Extremists never learn, do they? They only believe... but not in evolution. (sic)
Submitted by marcfrans on Tue, 2007-12-11 00:06.
@ Zen Master
The Flemish do NOT have "the upper hand". Because the Flemish are divided, and certainly the bulk of its left 'collaborates' with the francophones and the establishment, which effectively 'neuters' the Flemish demographic majority and helps maintain the current system. Sorry to disappoint you (and myself).
The King hopes to produce a false document & ignore the people
Submitted by Zen Master on Mon, 2007-12-10 23:46.
Under this current scheme it seems that King Albert II, wishes to ignore the will of the people of Belgium. This last idea ignores the people and seems to be an attempt to obtain a ‘faux document’ that gives the appearance of a legal document. Yet the people have never been allowed to have an influence upon the democratic new future of their country. The Flemish don't need the Walloons, but the Walloons need the Flemish tax money.
I hope the Flemish people continue to stand against the minority who wish to rule them. The Flemish hold the winning hand because they pay for most of the welfare money for the Walloons. King Albert and the Walloons are in the weaker position. The Walloons must have the Flemish tax money. The Flemish should begin to withhold the payment of taxes.