Friday 07 May 2021


In late November we had a general election and in mid-February we got a new government. But it won’t be until mid-June – seven months after the election – that we will actually get an inkling of what the new cabinet is planning to do. More >


What happens when you become so intrigued by a gorilla that you make frequent visits to the zoo to gaze at him across a water-filled ditch? In the case of the unfortunate Petronella Yvonne de Horde, the answer is severe injuries and a hospital stay. More >


Nearly 200,000 households have been told to boil their water for at least two minutes before drinking it because E-coli bacteria has been found in it, yet nobody seems to turn a hair. More >

Dutch missing out on UN pie

The United Nations is big business – its various organisations spend billions a year on goods and services provided by international companies. But Dutch businesses haven’t had much luck in getting a share of those billions – in 2005, the Netherlands was 19th on the list of countries doing business with the UN. More >


News agency ANP gaily informs us this morning that over one million people will be heading off on holiday over the Ascension Day weekend. No, in fact they won’t all be going at the weekend. More >


So the Netherlands has once again failed to qualify for the finals of the Eurovision Song Contest. This is fantastic news! We should all be cheering that Holland did not make the grade. More >


Today’s Volkskrant carries an interview with British ‘tax convert’ John Christensen who is in The Hague this afternoon to launch the Dutch arm of the Tax Justice Network. More >


So, congratulations are in order. The Netherlands has gone up from 15th to 8th place in the grandly-named International Institute for Management Development Index – a fact much heralded on the front page of today’s Financieele Dagblad. More >


Home affairs minister Guusje ter Horst needs a lesson in law making and stronger nerves. Not yet 100 days in office she has begun to panic, proposing a ban on alcohol sales for those under 18. A ban that critics say will be impossible to enforce and which has no support in parliament. More >

Celebration? Or riot?

Football hooligans, don’t you just love them? Their team scrapes to victory in the Dutch cup and what do they do? Go on the rampage in the city centre, throw rocks at the police and smash shop windows. What a novel way to celebrate. Even the rain could not dampen their enthusiasm. More >

Money, money, money

The biggest takeover in the history of the financial services industry – that’s banking to ordinary folk – is currently under way, with Holland’s own ABN Amro at the centre. It’s a complicated and confusing story but the bottom line seems to be: how much money will the lawyers and the consultants make out of it all? More >


There used to be two schools of thought when it came to Queen’s Day. The first was to embrace the whole crazy thing with gusto – whatever your age. The second was to go into hiding, preferably leaving the country a few days before the supermarkets started selling bright orange cakes and not coming back until everyone’s had recovered from their hangovers. More >