The Battle Lines are Drawn - Updated and Berated

undertheradar's picture

The budget deal will be discussed in a further post. This week was a flurry of policking in the Netherlands trying to come up with a budget to hand in to Brussels. The 'Kunduz' coalition of CDA, VVD, Groenlinks, D66 came up with the earliest package and got it through parliament today. The package includes changes to the retirement age, value added taxes (from the current 19 percent to 21 percent in October), labour laws, and a ban on interest-only loans. It looks like enough to reach the 3 percent target or thereabouts in 2013, but there is uncertainty about whether it will hold beyond the elections of 9 September. Politics in the Netherlands are a bit difficult to encapsulate here with the large number of parties in a proportional representation democracy. I am slowly trying to explain it from post to post. A more complete look at the package is coming shortly, but once again it's fate is somewhat uncertain as we have a care-taker government until the elections. Then anything is possible. The 'Kunduz' coalition seems to have won in the polls for its efforts, and De Jager of CDA led the negotiating effort and is identified as the most pivotal figure behind the deal. A lot of debates between various parties, but the Kunduz coalition seemed to have come up almost spontaneously with a deal. The rest were almost brushed aside. PvdA, SP and PVV voted against the deal. The package looks like it balanced the austerity, but things are looking questionable around the eureconomy and I expect plenty of tweaking in the coming months. The post is a bit wacky and open, befitting the times. 




The problem with my massive borrowing operation is that it relies on whatever I can find wherever I can get it. The best insider stuff I can get comes from ZH and nakedcapitalism, which both don't have a lot I can use in the Dutch context [hint :)]. If I borrow heavily from them in my economic analysis I hope everyone understands.


Another concern is that I keep my anonymity to the best degree possible. So if I catch Woutertje or any other well-connected bobo of this bankrupt establishment snooping around online or anywhere else on me too keenly I'm going to scream bloody murder. I'd like my articles being read primarily by ordinairy critical thinkers, not well-paid investigators within the power structure.




Today I'm borrowing exclusively from Thank you. There's a deal that will be debated today. I'm not drawing any of my own conclusions on it for the time being. Whether has the best dirt, I don't know, but I certainly don't find I need to check out sources like Elsevier to tighten things up for my purposes.


Pechtold of D66 says he's happy the glove has been picked up after the failed negotiations in the Catshuis. Not all parties were in agreement, with SGP calling it rubbish since they were not invited to the table. If Pechtold thinks he's going to apply his rhetorical prowess to discredit the appraisals and metaphors I use for him and his party, or any others I use he'd better include well-placed innuendos to the euro elephant stampeding around that needs to be taken down and buried or put back in the zoo. He's going to have a fight on his hands. Or he'll be politely ignored.


Rutte (VVD), in his appeal to the zeitgeist in the country said something 'very special had happened' in reaching a deal. And VVD leader Blok said the measures are painful but also offer 'the prospects for a better Netherlands'. Whatever, anything to avoid the 1.2 billion euro fine from Brussels is going to do that for the moment.


Wilders says he's going to duke it out for the ordinary, hard-working peoples. Samsom said the deal was a continuation of a right-wing coalition agreement supplemented by nasty measures agreed but poorly revealed in the Catshuis package. If he's keeping up with my posts, I hope he understands my position on pensions, but I'll let him appeal to the nearly retiring for the time being just as Wilders does.


Enough for the moment, just a few tidbits I'm afraid. I'm going to post this because it's going to be debated today anyway and we'll all get a chance to take pot shots later.


Readers, if you feel inclined, add your own insights.

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undertheradar's picture

Hadn't run across that yet, thanks.

Here are the most important points in the accord:

I suggest running it through a translator if you want.

ebworthen's picture

I don't know your politicians there but they are all of the same ilk.

Promises, promises; only to be followed by breaking promises to the voters and appeasing banks and their own governmental goals, pensions, salaries, kickbacks, etc.

They call it "compromise", I call it "equivocation".

If you discover a way to hold their feet to the fire let me know.

It is sad that we all have to worry about politicians knowing our identity when we voice opposition and disgust with their Sophistry and inability to protect their constituents from parasitic crony capitalism and/or socialism.

Nukular Freedum's picture

I think what your doing is exactly the way to go. I wouldnt worry about Woutertje and the like. What are they gonna do? Click on your icon? Well, good luck with that. Anyway, all the best, +100!

zot23's picture

1 star to add to your impressive collection.

BanjoDoug's picture

This article is 100% meaningless BLABBER.....   totally worthless....

undertheradar's picture

Just politics. I'd vote you up but I'm too lazy.

undertheradar's picture

Just tried to vote myself down but couldn't! It'll keep my goals against average low.

<- Vote me down here.

Try to vote me down. You can't! 


Just like the Kunduz coalition came up with the stick save today! Without any details and they did it! And De Jager already feels the support coming on from voters for his brilliant negotiating! He's just come out of the smoky rooms and he can feel the vibe man. He's the man of the hour!


Analysis following any possible details coming out when they come out. With a critical look at the Newtonian assumptions of the CPB.

gaoptimize's picture

1) Visits coffee shop for "pot"

2) Then bar for "shots"

3) Write ZH blog

GeneMarchbanks's picture

Oh my...

utr is crystalline in comparison to the general contributor crowd. The irony being the utter simplicity of the 'articles' they post contrasted to the mad complexity of all things micro.


undertheradar's picture

You can't knock em all, most are entertaining and many insightful ;) And gaoptimize is right on the mark!

undertheradar's picture

Rough life. Whoever does it.

falak pema's picture

Under the radar conjures up images of stealth planes like F-117 Nigh hawks , as opposed to the hi-flying, Google mapping, Francis Gary Powers U2 that got shot down. New strategy, same objective.

What is the objective??? Where is our civilization heading; apart from 'me-first' logic, at individual level, aka Facebook mania. 

Today, macro economy wise in first world, under debt mountain hangover, that is not going away, if anything getting bigger day by day, we only know one game as in the old school yard : beggar thy neighbour, steal his marbles! 

Good luck under the radar. This is no battle of Brittain out there! 

undertheradar's picture

Always enlightening rather than entiteling, falak. Predisposed to reflection, no mindless cbs growth plan. No encumbered transmission mechanism.

undertheradar's picture

I didn't translate half of the excellent article. I wish I'd get some more Dutch reading this who'd help me out without jumping too quickly into telling me what to do or promoting their own investment thinking. And I'm not saying their advice is wrong, it's just that I'm not going scurry around here like a gold or silver bug. We have our men for that:

Haven't checked what it actually is.

Sap is getting heat from Samsom PvdA and Roemer SP for abandoning her principles in a quick power grab. I wouldn't be surprised if she'd be willing to sell out all her supposedly green and left constituency in these next elections without saying so. Promise all kinds of stuff and then just go for prestige. The 'Kunduz' cabinet of progressive change on a global scale. Yeah right. She wants it.....

undertheradar's picture

The Dutch will fight over 1.2 billion and pretend, especially some of them, they're saving the country while the others have been inattentive. It is the same fight as usual, understand the stakes, take your commands, based on your understanding, present them with panache. Shock doctrine.

Here's a good example:

JOYFUL's picture

...but I'll let him appeal to the nearly retiring for the time being just as Wilders does...

what a quaint phrase - the nearly retiring - descriptive of a demographic, in the first sense, yet revealing of the entire collapsing edifice of the grand experiment in "democracy" and the welfare state in the second.

Like a distant line of hilltops, always visible but somehow seeming to maintain an elusive distance to the travellers' position, the age of retirement, that happy, "Western Lands" of perma-leisure, this Asgard of earned delights for the man and woman of the post-industrial era will soon reveal itself for the mirage it is...

an entirely fictitious story made up by the controllers of the kleptocratic state to keep the hamsters trundling merrily on their motion-making machines, within spitting distance of the dangling carrot of entitlements: a pension, health care from cradle to grave, a secure ownership of home n hearth, assets invested in credible investments...

and poof!

all gone in the blink of an eye...yes, it will be sudden, when the curtain closes on the great EuroMerikan experiment in post-fuedal economics, and like the cheap conjuror whose bag of tricks stands open n empty, all is revealed for what it always was...a majic show...which convinced, somehow, because our ancestors were still capable of -Belief - of according to the world a credulous sense of security that GOD hisself wished to reward those to whom hard work and financial probity were the bedrock of faith..

a charming idea which we moderns in our sophistication and greater knowledge of the world recognize as myth...but have failed to replace with anything more enduring...and so we drift, farther and farther from the shores of the happy lands that they wished for us, their inheritors...and closer each day to the shoals upon which our misplaced assurance of privilege is sure to crash.

And it may well be the Dutch & Belgians who suffer the first and most wrenching dislocations to the Era of Entitlement - for it was the colonial predations of both those countries which first set the standard, and then, the lowest bar, respectively of serial enslavement and wealth extraction for the victims of their Protestant Pilgrimages to Paradise...for which they would have done well to remember the Kapitalist Katcheism...a'int nothin in life for free!  A maxim that their Anglo-Amerikan imitators are shortly due to be tutored in as well!

For those who make it even past the first stage of the disaster, on to dry land, life will be a reworking of what we only know from stories of the past...a ceaseless battle for survival against predators natural and otherwise. Retirement from which will exactly equivalate to death, on the personal level, a microsmic duplication of the death of our culture on the macro level, which retired from the duty entrusted to it, and instead of standing viligant against those who sought our destruction, bought it's own bullshit and stood down in face of an enemy we could have easily defeated, had we stood together. [Paradise Cove\Bobby Lyle]

p.s. thanks as always undertheradar, for opening the debate to wider visions than the tired and self-serving.

Optimusprime's picture

Lovely wordsmithing, marred only by "equivalate" (not a word).  Do you mean "equate"?

"Protestant Pilgrimages to Paradise" is terrific.  +1.

Widowmaker's picture

Democracy inc, bought and paid for or muscled racketeering and extortion?

Perhaps one can just leave democracy out as its clearly only for incorporated shit bag "business"

undertheradar's picture

We're certainly in a tight spot aren't we? But let the speculators go about their business as usual and the benefiting govts scimp now and pay back in hard thalers later.

gmrpeabody's picture

Wow..., what's everybody talking about?

Sounds very important!

+1... well played, sir  ( I think )

undertheradar's picture

I don't know myself, just joined the show. Anyone can play 8 ball.