Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Brief Thoughts on Geert Wilders

It is election time in The Netherlands and the one political figure who has been getting the most attention, and the most criticism, from the media is certainly Geert Wilders, leader of the Party for Freedom (PVV). Despite having otherwise very liberal views, Wilders has been described as a "far-right" populist by the media as well as the "Dutch Donald Trump" for his desire to stop Muslim immigration into the Netherlands and to take the Dutch kingdom out of the European Union. Of course, any look at his political and social views, or the domestic policy of French presidential candidate Marine Le Pen, will show that these are certainly not "right wing" or "far right" figures at all. However, as they both stand opposed to open borders and in favor of national sovereignty, that is all it takes these days to be considered a right-wing extremist. For myself, I have never been wild about Wilders but would not hesitate to vote for him in this election were I eligible to do so. Aside from his social views, with which I am not in agreement, there is the issue of the monarchy and Geert Wilders is certainly not a member of what was once called the 'Orange Party'. He is certainly no Jacobin firebrand and would probably rate as more royalist than his French, female counterpart but an ardent royalist I would say he is certainly not. He relationship with the House of Orange has troubled me for years.

Not all of this, to be fair, is his own fault, depending on how you look at it. The monarchy in The Netherlands is supposed to be non-political and non-partisan, however, no one usually minds if the royals express opinions as long as they are in line with the liberal mainstream. Talking about "values" is fine but, in an era in which values are legislated by the government, nothing is non-political these days. In her 2007 Christmas speech HM Queen Beatrix made some remarks that most, including Wilders, took as a very thinly veiled swipe at him and his party, praising multiculturalism and criticizing opposition to it. From that time on, Wilders made no secret of the fact that he has little to do with Queen Beatrix (Princess Beatrix since her abdication) and has called for the monarchy to be removed from having any political power and become purely ceremonial. This, of course, is a major problem for me but I do not believe Wilders would have taken the position he had were it not for the Queen coming out in opposition to him and his party first. Still, I have no doubt the situation persists as I doubt the views of King Willem-Alexander are very different from those of his mother or anyone else in the circles they move in.

This, under ordinary circumstances, would be enough for me to never consider supporting Wilders at all but, alas, these are not ordinary circumstances. In the first place, Wilders takes no official position on the monarchy and has never become a republican. It would be a difficult thing to do given that the PVV, while having a larger percentage of republicans than most, is still a party with a large majority of its membership being royalists. If for no other reason that the facts on the ground and realpolitik, I could not imagine Wilders ever trying to abolish the monarchy provided the King broke every precedent and openly tried to suppress him which, likewise, I could never imagine happening. So, as far as the monarchy goes, there is reason for me to dislike him but not enough to consider him untouchable or to outweigh other factors.

Those other factors are also very important to me and, it seems, to a growing number of Dutch voters as well. This is reassuring since, as his support increases, so does the amount of royalist support for Wilders and that will help check his dislike of the current members of the House of Orange. I fully support Wilders in wishing to save the Netherlands for the Netherlanders because a Netherlands without Netherlanders would be no Netherlands for me. I also fully support his aim to take the Netherlands out of the European Union. This also helps me swallow my disdain at his call for a purely ceremonial monarchy since, in my opinion, as long as any monarchy is part of the EU, the monarchy is basically ceremonial anyway as the Sovereign is not truly sovereign. I also think that the Dutch monarchy and all the rest that makes up the Dutch culture and national character can only be preserved by the Dutch themselves and not by Moroccans, Algerians or Turks. Net migration for the first half of 2016 alone was double what it had been the previous year. This is unprecedented. For me, the burqa is just as out of place in Amsterdam as a miniskirt would be in Riyadh. I want the Dutch monarchy to survive but I also want there to be a Dutch population for it to reign over. So, not without some reservations, I would be voting for Wilders and the PVV were I able because, for me, populations are not interchangeable and the Dutch people are not replaceable. Also, because I do not think anything will get better, from my reactionary point of view, until the tyrannical, top-heavy, talking shop called the European Union is consigned to the dustbin of history.

Ik stem Wilders & lang leve de Koning!


  1. Dear MadMonarchist,

    I'm a monarchist with generally right-wing liberal sympathies from the Netherlands. I sometimes read your blog for its sharp analyses, but I usually don't comment because we are bound to disagree on most issues besides monarchy anyway. However, in this particular case I feel very strongly about the topic and would therefore like to bring some points to the consideration of you and your readers.

    Firstly, note that we do have a party represented in the Dutch parliament that is both staunchly monarchist and opposed to Islamic migration. This is the 'Staatkundig Gereformeerde Partij' (SGP). They are of a Calvinist nature and have strong religious views which I do not always agree with, but I may still vote for them today because of these two topics. I would assume the religious topics are much less of a problem for you and many of your readers anyway. So why not support them instead?

    Secondly, you argue that any monarchy in the EU is bound to be ceremonial anyway. This is a view that, in my opinion, does not reflect the reality in the Netherlands, especially as it was before 2012. The Dutch monarch used to play a big role in cabinet formations (until this was abolished by Wilders and the left-wing parties - the EU had no opinion on it). Also, the monarch still has some strong advisory tasks due to chairing the Council of States and having regular talks with the prime minister and other politicians (which Wilders would like to get rid of). It is hard to establish exactly how much influence this gives the monarch, but insiders have said that it is quite a bit more than they expected. Therefore, I think that a monarch can have quite some power behind the scenes even within the EU.

    Thirdly, I would like to stress that I don't think Queen Beatrix ever openly opposed Wilders' party. Often she would just stress the need for religious tolerance in her Christmas speech and then Wilders would claim that she attacked him over that. When exactly would you say she came out and attacked him in public? Even more importantly, our current King has done even less that could offend Wilders. You can speculate that his views will deviate from those of Wilders in private, but I do think that this is a poor explanation for anti-monarchist views.

    In conclusion, I suppose my point was that I found it strange that a reactionary blog would recommend voting for a party that has stripped away powers of a monarchy and would like to go even further with that. But you have explained your arguments clearly - it is probably due to our very different political views. In any case, I wish you best of luck in your struggle for restorations worldwide.

    Kind regards,

    1. I would think any European would know better than me the thinking behind 'strategic voting'. Yes, under normal circumstances, the SGP would be a far better party to support but I dare say no one outside of the Netherlands, other than Dutch or partial Dutch people (like myself) have ever heard of them. They have never come anywhere close to achieving power, despite being around for a very long time. I appreciate that they are monarchist, opposed to Islamisation and not too fond of the EU but they stand no chance of being elected to real power and while the things they have been able to achieve in cooperation with the establishment, support for trad family values, are not enough to deal with the current threat.

      You must realize that this election was largely seen as Rutte vs Wilders and I would support Wilders even if for nothing more than to smash up the status quo. Yes, he supported the monarchy becoming totally ceremonial, and I said I don't like that, but so did every other major political party as you surely know but for some reason neglected to mention.

      And of course the Queen did not attack him by name, that would be completely out of order but when you support multiculturalism and "tolerance" in the way that she did, with the PVV alone being singled out as "intolerant" and opposed to multiculturalism, it is not far fetched to think that Wilders was the face of the "intolerance" she had in mind. The King has not said the same but he has also gone rather farther I think in openly backing the status quo. Nor is he alone, as I have mentioned before, the Prince of Wales has warned about "populism" being like the Nazis and the King of Norway has gone further still. They have clearly taken a political position. I wish it were not opposed to my own, I would never seek to rob them of their birthright because of it but others are not so nice as I am. I prefer to ignore it but for most people, if the monarch takes a position opposed to them, they will in turn be opposed to the monarch.

      And again, I wouldn't call Wilders anti-monarchy. He's been too kind to liberalism in my view but he's never called for ending the monarchy and removing the monarch from politics is, as you know, something virtually every mainstream party has agreed to as well. I would guess that you do not see the danger that I see, plenty do not. I don't want to see Nederlanders ending up like the Boers in their own country. Desperate times call for desperate measures or, as Britain's King George III once said, "sometimes one must call in bad men to govern bad men". So, I would've voted for Wilders as the candidate that had the best chance of winning who would be most likely to take action to keep the Netherlands for the Nederlanders.

    2. Dear MadMonarchist,

      Thank you for the elaborate answer. My reply is that I did not neglect to mention that virtually every other party in the Netherlands would support the monarchy becoming ceremonial; I simply do not believe that this is the case. When there was a vote on removing the role of the monarch in cabinet formations in 2012 all the Christian parties (not just the SGP, but the larger CDA and Christian Union as well) and the conservative-liberal VVD of Prime Minister Rutte voted against it. These same four parties also oppose removing the monarch from the government and Council of States.

      You can also find that viewpoint on their websites (for example, see the following webpage of the CDA, which also says some other very positive things about the monarchy - the other three have very similar wegpages: https://www.cda.nl/actueel/nieuws/cda-koning-verbindt-nederland/). Also, I tend to watch any debates there are about the royal Family in the Dutch parliament and I have always seen these four parties vote in a pro-monarchy way. The PVV states the opposite on its website and also votes the other way.

      To give just one recent example of what I mean, when there was a discussion about the money reserved for Crown Princess Amalia these four parties defended the monarchy while Wilders' party sided with the left-wing parties in criticizing the amount of money they cost Dutch taxpayers (as was also written down in this article: http://www.rtlnieuws.nl/nederland/politiek/premier-wil-niet-tornen-aan-inkomen-amalia-toelage-van-15-miljoen-blijft-overeind).

      However, you are absolutely correct that Wilders is not a republican. To be clear: I do not wish to suggest that.

      Finally, I do agree with you that the recent words of prince Charles were an attack against the 'populist' parties in Europe, and I also agree with you that Queen Beatrix may have had Wilders in mind when she gave these Christmas speeches about the importance of religious tolerance. But isn't there quite a difference between thinking something and saying it outright? I can't see such a pro-tolerance speech as a true provocation. Also, are you aware of what Wilders' said at the time? He said 'the Queen should leave the government like a hare' (http://www.volkskrant.nl/politiek/wilders-zoekt-al-jaren-de-confrontatie-met-beatrix~a3117709/). With such words he has certainly done his share of the provoking.

      In any case, I will leave the final word on this to you. All the sources are in Dutch, but perhaps you can read it or translate it. Have a nice day and we will see what the future brings for Wilders.

      Kind regards,

    3. I can go into detail if you like but I am sure you know more about this than I do and are simply choosing to be 'selective' with the facts. I'm sure you know as well as I do that, no, not 100% but most of the major parties support the monarchy being removed from politics. I can give you the list, party by party and issue by issue but, again, I am sure you know this and just choose to ignore it.

      Yes, I am aware of what Wilders said, again, in reaction to the attitude of the Queen. Would I consider it grounds for getting so worked up? No. However, while Wilders is not an outright republican I would also never pretend that he is an ardent royalist either. Likewise, I think you know as well as I do just how outrageous and "political" most everyone would think it was if the Queen has said the opposite, if she had said that tolerance has its limits, that multiculturalism is a flawed idea or something of the like. There would have been a huge uproar and I think you know as well as I that everyone, possibly yourself, would have considered that "a true provocation".

      And, none of this really has any impact on my primary point which is "strategic voting". The monarchy in The Netherlands is popular enough that, as it stands now, I doubt any party could get rid of it if they wanted to. However, in my opinion, Wilders and the PVV were the only ones with a genuine chance of success who stood opposed to open borders, the displacement of the Dutch population and continued subservience to Brussels, which is why I would have voted for him. I know, and was very open, about his troubled history with the monarchy. However, as I also said, I want a Dutch monarchy with a Dutch population to reign over with a Dutch culture and not a Turkish, Algerian or Moroccan one. That should be preserved in their countries, not in The Netherlands. It seems, you do not see that as a bad thing or you think it more improbable than I. That seems to be the point of divergence, it's a difference of opinion and I doubt likely to change.

    4. Dear MadMonarchist,

      I know that in my previous post I said that I would let you have the last word, but due to your post I do feel the need to say that I was not being deliberately selective with facts. In case you and your readers want the full picture, the four parties I mentioned have been loyal to monarchy on every vote I have seen; that leaves six other ones who have not (PvdA, D66, GreenLeft, SP, Animal Party, Denk) plus Wilders (50+ has no viewpoint on the issue and abstains). So the main point I wanted to add to your post, in case it did not come accross, is that there is still a real battle being fought here over the constitutional role and finances of the monarchy. That a majority of parties wants to change things only makes supporting the ones that don't more important to me. The question then becomes if you consider this topic more or less important than migration and related issues. You have explained your arguments clearly in that regard, but my priorities are different.

      Best regards,

    5. I think I've been clear enough, I don't regard such issues as unimportant but I don't see much hope for Dutch monarchy in an Islamified country with a majority African population and an aging Dutch minority, a country whose politics will be dominated by a people with no historical, cultural or ancestral link to the House of Orange at all. Because most parties support removing the monarchy from politics, I don't see any greater threat with a PVV majority than already exists. They were, however, the only ones willing to do something about multiculturalism, border controls and the EU who had a real chance of achieving first place, even if they ultimately did not.

  2. Excellent post as always. Netherlands should belong to the Dutch.

  3. I agree. I mean what do you associate with the word "Netherlands"? Hmm... Arabs? No!
    Hmm... Muslims? No! ...Dutch Christians? Yes! It's so obvious, will it really be still Netherlands if there are more arabs than caucasians, more muslims than christians. No, of course not. Come on, when you think of Netherlands you don't think of arabs or muslims, do you? Yet the socialists, want to invite arabs and muslims in until it would be more Arabian than ductch and then would it be Netherlands still, no. It might be in name, but names are useless. North Korea has the word democratic also, but isn't democratic. So I completely agree with you on this point.

  4. Mad Monarchist, I know you will blast me for this, but I'm going to say it anyway.
    Why did you allow Ponocrates to say "Netherlands should belong to the dutch"? But I'm not allowed to say that Indonesia belongs to the Indonesian. Apparently Indonesia also belongs to the Dutch and Soekarno is the bad guy.

    Look, I know you think of me as an internet troll but I'm not. Been watching your Youtube channel since 2010, and reading your blog since 2012, but only recently start commenting to show my support to you. Monarchist blogs that I followed are you, Theodore "RoyalCello" Harvey, and Black Baron who have gone AWOL.

    By commenting I wanted to show you that not only westerners read your blog, it was also read and appreciated by people on the other side of the globe. I know that maintaining a blog is very hard, many blog owners end up closing their blog, gone AWOL, or handing their blog to other person. As one of the most prominent monarchist writers please keep writing, don't be another casualties like Black Baron.

    1. I know non-westerners read my blog (some are my relatives) it's just that it isn't usually enough to show up on the stats (and not surprising since most don't read English). Now, the Netherlands SHOULD belong to the Dutch. The *Dutch East Indies* should have stayed with the Dutch because it was the Dutch who built it, it was the Dutch who built the infrastructure, found the oil, took the place and made it productive. There was no unity at all until the Dutch made it a single political entity and I don't have much patience for people who have something, never do anything with it, someone else comes along, makes a success of it and then they turn around and say, 'okay, now that you've done the work, it all belongs to me'. No.

      But, in any event, I don't know why you obsess over this point. It's over. You guys won. America stabbed the Dutch in the back and forced them to surrender. It's all over and the Dutch are gone. If you think Moroccans have a right to the Netherlands but the Dutch have no right to Indonesia, you could explain to me how that works. I don't suppose you know that Geert Wilders himself is of partial Indonesian ancestry.


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