Holland's next leader?


This is as good a time as any to remind everyone to please keep things civil, not to engage in personal attacks and if you have a problem with an individual please flag the post and bring to the attention of the mods.

This is a general reminder and not aimed at anyone in particular. Focus on the message not the messenger please.


You left out: shiny happy people holding hands.


How did you figure out that your response was requested?
At least you know when people are talking about you!


When did populism become a negative political point of view? Shouldn’t politicians care about ordinary people? Are we all bourgeoisie and aristocrats who should fight against the interest of common people in order to preserve our wealth?

I really don’t understand this modern wave of:'POPULISM IS EVIL" outcries each time a political party caters to the working class.


Perhaps it was around the same time that liberlalism become a negative political point of view… :ponder:

Here’s a discussion with two apparently Dutch analysts on public (populist!:astonished:) television in the legendary liberal land of Canada.


But the problem with liberalism is not liberalism itself (same applied for libertarianism), it’s people who claim to be liberals and then promote social and economical ideals in line with Marxism and communism.

Populism in itself doesn’t have a clear social/political definition, it’s just the definition of a political movement that caters to ordinary people, workers and so on.
I can see why people can disagree with a specific populist politician if his political agenda doesn’t match their interests, but I don’t understand why “populism” itself is being seen as something negative. Protecting the rights and interests of ordinary people and workers has been for decades the trump (ha) card of many left-leaning politicians. This sudden 360 from all left-leaning political parties, targetting any populist party and calling them nazi-fascist etc. seems completely unreasonable.


Liberalism in itself doesn’t have a clear social/political definition.

Fixed it for ya. :wink:

Yes, I know, you can quote this or that authoritative source to refute the claim. And the refutation will have a very simple counter-refutation.

One country’s “Liberal” party is “left wing”, another’s is “right wing”, and still another’s is “centrist”.

This may not make sense from an Americentric position (and this seems to apply to “both sides” of Americentrism), but then that’s also the point – the search for a clear, standard definition is problematic, because politics around the world is just too complex a subject.

You have your classical liberals and your neoliberals and your liberal socialists and so on, so why not classical populists etc.?

Then you can tell people with pride that you’re not one of those populists. You’re in a good denomination. :innocent:

But the problem with liberalism is not liberalism itself (same applied for libertarianism), it’s people who claim to be liberals and then promote social and economical ideals in line with Marxism and communism.

We can fix that too. :slight_smile:

But the problem with populism is not populism itself (same applies to humanism), it’s people who claim to be populists and then promote ________ and ________ ideals in line with ________ and ________.

You can use the same formula for any -ism. :2cents:


Liberal and libertarian doctrines have very specific basis, both from a social and economical point of view. Defining them “left”, “right” or anywhere within the spectrum, as you say, has to be done keeping in mind the country of reference.

Populism, as even the definition of Wiki says, can be anywhere from left to right because common people’s interests vary from country to country.

My problem is with the connection of populism = BAD, which makes no sense, precisely because in order to cater to the working class it needs to achieve different goals.


I believe you can find a basic consensus on the doctrine of what’s now called classical liberalism. Zoom out to just liberalism, and you lose that consensus.


Which is exactly why I have a problem with people saying:“I’m a liberal” when they’re clearly not. It’s probably an issue that I have with the modern definition of the term, because if a liberal from the 19th century was brought back to life and had a chat with a current year liberal he’d have a stroke. There’s a huge gap between the original definition of liberalism and the modern one.

For me the more modern use of the term “liberal” which promotes equality of outcome rather than equality of opportunity is absolute cancer and should be eradicated from any political system.

It’s a bit like “socialism”, depending on how it’s actuated it can range from current year Venezuela to Hitler’s time Germany (National Socialism). We should call political ideas using the name of vegetables or fruit, without having to worry about:“Yeah I’m X according to its 17th century acception of the term, and you?” - “Oh I’m X as well, but I follow the Mein Kampf ideology”.


Vegetables evolve just like ideologies.

“You’re a cruciferist because you like cauliflower with dip? Well I’m a real cruciferist, kale all the way! And don’t get me started on so-called broccoli. Real broccoli, if you can find it, is like cabbage with one flower head in the middle, not this ‘equality of inflorescence’ nonsense.”


The UK in the 70’s had the National Front, it was openly fascist and was rightly hated, It morphed into the BNP and tried to refine its message to be more palatable, Which still didn’t work. UKIP is now viewed with much skepticism in so much as they refined the message but the underlying bigitory and hatred is still there.

Marie La pen, is the leader of the National Front in France. Geert Wilders to me went way beyond what someone like Nigel Farage speaks of openly as his position, and one which trump seems to agree with, I don’t think Trump wants to, but I do think he is aligning with some closet and some not so closet fascists.


But are these parties far right? As a center right conservative with a fondness for Jacksonian populism (with a dissenting streak of Hamiltonian elitism), I take issue with them being called populist or right wing. Le Pen? Appeals to people that want to maintain France dirigiste state benefits.

Wilders? Wants to maintain pension benefits in the Netherlands at the existing age. He is a poor man`s Fritz Bolkestein (mentored by him but abandoning the erudite global conservative views of Fritz). If anything, do the Dutch people on this forum, one of whom questioned the understanding of their politics by foreigners, not get the Bolkestein-Wilders irony? That his mentor basically opened up the EU to cheap labour through the Bolkestein Directive?https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Services_in_the_Internal_Market_Directive_2006

Like Bolkestein, I prefer open immigration because it means cheap service workers. I prefer open trade because it keeps goods and services cheap, especially for working folks. I prefer minimal state programs because bloated bureaucracy leads to unaccountability. In Europe that makes me a minority!

In Europe, give me a Sarkozy (Macron is the best of a bad lot this French election round), Rutte, or Cameron…unfortunately two of these are gone. Merkel – too liberal on immigration even for a center right person such as myself that generally supports open immigration. Le Pen or Wilders? Too left wing on economic issues and too nationalistic.

I miss Berlusconi – he was entertaining and very pro US. Rajoy seems not bad. Don`t like May.


The important truth that liberalism missed from the outset is that liberty and equality are mutually antagonistic. You can’t have it both ways, and liberalism end with us having it neither way.

And all you need to know about fraternity you can learn by watching Animal House. Or studying the French Revolution.

Slogans often make bad policy.

(“Created equal” is about a starting point, not a result.)


Hey, let’s keep religion out of this discussion, please!


You gotta LOVE how MSM DECLARE Rutte the winner and Wilders the loser!
The ruling coalition lost 49% of their seats. Unprecedented!
Rutte lost 5.
Wilder won 20% seats…
We DO live in the age of post-fact news!
Apart from that; it will be a struggle for Rutte to form a viable coaltion, to acquire a majority govt. If and when he got THAT mess behind him, he will have a very complicated time actually governing: too diverse will his govt turn out to be.


Which means he did not win 80% of them! CHECK-MATE. (lol)


I was amazed the MSM declared the left the victors because of gains by the Greens…like duh!!! Rutte plus CDA plus D66 = over 70 seats even without Wilders and other minor right parties.


Populism is about listening to the people and championing their point of view, whatever it may be. How someone feels about populism is a litmus test for how he feels about the average Joe.

Me, I’ve got mixed feelings about both. But the elite have gotten way out of touch, and the current wave of populism is a needed correction to restore balance.

At a certain point it will be time to move beyond Trumpism and Trump and all these similar politicians in various developed nations. Right now, we need to go through this phase. We don’t have to like it, but we need to accept it.

I’d have preferred the Tea Party, but IRS skulduggery and their own lack of Trump savvy made them a dead letter. So settle for what wins.

Back on topic: Holland seems to be in an earlier phase than the US - say, a few years behind. But they’re headed in a similar direction.


You’re doing the same thing as Ibis but with a different preferred definition, a more recent one.

Would you accuse a party that opposes the minimum wage, collective bargaining etc. and supports limited government, high taxes etc. of being a cross between an American university fraternity and the French Revolution?

Even if we put aside the more right-leaning ones, how many Liberal (or Liberal Democratic) parties in the world today actually believe in equality of outcome?