Crazy Dutchies: Part I

Dutch people are an amusing interesting folk, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like them. Some of the things they do are just plain weird. Curious? Get ready for a little summary:

1. The Law
As in every other country, the Dutchies have their law. But not only is it the least strict law known to humanity, it’s also the strangest one. Why? Well, let’s say you cross the speed limit with 3 kilometers per hour. You’ll get a large fine for sure. But, if you decide to spend 10 years of your life stealing money from old people (and we’re talking a total of several millions here), they might put you in prison for 2,5 years. Yes, might. Being in prison is expensive, so they might just let you go because that’s cheaper. Murder gets you 2-5 years as well, by the way, so if you ever need to get rid of somebody… Haha, just kidding. Moral of the story: crime pays here. But only if you do it right. 

2. Prisons
Dutch prisons are unlike any other prison I’ve ever seen (on TV that is ;)), and mostly they’re reminiscent of four star hotels. A Dutch prisoner has a cell of his/her own, 4 meals a day, TV in the room, and if desired a PlayStation/XBOX/whatever can be brought in. They have time “off”, time to exercise, and what not. So if and when they put you in, enjoy. Because in this country, for a lot of people life in prison is by far more luxurious than daily life.

3. Politics
Politics-wise, this is a strange country as well. Every idiot with an x number of supporters’ signatures can start a political party. And that’s how, in 2006, we had a pro-paedophile political party, the “Party For Neighbourly Love, Freedom and Diversity”, which we “normal folk” called the “Pedo Party”, because that’s what it actually was. Luckily, it turned out that they didn’t get enough support to become eligible for election, and the party was dissolved in 2010. But seriously… Pedo party?

4. Legalization
As known to most of you (since that’s what the Netherlands are famous for), soft drugs and prostitution is fully legal here. The reasoning behind the first one is that, if it would be illegal, more people would be using because everything that’s illegal is attractive. Pretty smart, huh? If you ask me, both of these points are merely there to generate more income from tourism. Because, let’s face it, there’s nothing to see here, really.

5. War
Unlike a lot of other countries, we haven’t really had in-country wars after the 1800’s. Sure, during World War II we hated the Germans (still do) and printed illegal newspapers, and sold out our Jewish neighbours (although everybody will tell you they didn’t), but apart from that… But we love to meddle help out other countries. So we’ve messed around in Bosnia during the Bosnian Wars (up to date, nobody really knows what happened there, but it sure was sufficient for the entire 2002 government to resign), hated Serbia during the Kosovo war, and we’re currently involved in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libiya. And when one of our soldiers dies during war, it’s national news. Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t death a risk during war? I doubt that Americans -who have by far more soldiers stationed there- collectively cry every time something happens. On top of that, it’s not that we’re in to help out all those Afghans/Iraqi’s/whatever, noooo… We’re in to support the United States. Because if and when we’ll have warfare of our own (terrorism and all that), they will support us back… Which makes sense, until you realize that the Netherlands are so freaking small, that war here would be the most pointless thing ever. And not only because of the fact that if you drop a bomb here, the whole fucking country is gone. Terrorists are idiots, but they’re not that stupid.

See what I mean? They’re just plain weird… In fact, there’s more, but  I’ve decided to make a series out of it because it’s way too much for one post. And we wouldn’t want any Dutchie overkill, now would we?

Anyway… Feel free to share your thoughts and as always, thanks for reading!



7 responses to “Crazy Dutchies: Part I

      • Well, since you asked… Remember how I liked this, though!
        1. This isn’t a Dutch problem, but a problem that persists all over the world.
        2. Prisons serve two goals: punishment (if you do this to society, society wants to see you punished) and rehabilitation (we want you to pay your dues, but then become someone who can actively contribute to that society. When it comes to designing prisons (not just the rooms, but the whole mechanism behind it), there is a tension between the two. If you just lock up people, they’re less likely to succesfully get back in society and avoid a path of crime for the rest of their lives. Also, a prisoner is far more expensive than someone who pays taxes and is able to participate in an economy. The more you emphasize on the rehabilitation side, the more ‘luxurious’ prisons may seem.
        3. Okay, I secretly agree with you on this one, although it’s also a good thing that every policy is an outcome of negotiations. Support can be greater among the people as a whole when different stances come to an agreement.
        4. Soft drugs is not legal and prostitution is also not as regulated as desirable. I don’t oppose your point, although I think tourists miss out on almost everything here (which can be very beautiful) when they visit Amsterdam or other coffeeshops only.
        5. I think everyone born before 1940 would not agree with the first sentence you wrote, nor anyone from Indonesia (or, the Dutch East Indies, as it was called until 1949). Including me, although I was born considerably later.

      • Mmh, I see your points. I do have to say that hardly anything I’ve mentioned here is as black-and-white and crude as I write it down, since my main goal here is to amuse ;) And apparently, it worked, even for you :) But thanks for the elaborate reply, it’s very appreciated!

      • Haha, hup Holland indeed! Can’t wait to pull my orange shirt out of the closet… But that’s gonna be a separate post :) Bet you’re gonna love that one ;)

  1. Real eye-opener. Interesting, though that Dutchies seem to note the abnormality and the difference between the way they do things and… whatever “normal” is. Looking forward to the series.

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