No more Mister Nice Guy: The end of Dutch tolerance


(The model of sexual tolerance: Little boys with fingers in dykes…)

You know, it used to be that, here in Holland, we could boast about our tulips, our windmills, our dyke fingering little boys and our much touted tolerance. Whether it was legalizing soft drugs, prostitution, gay marriage, abortion or the freedom to worship in the Church of the Recombined Sprout (or something), we would do it or be happy to introduce it the moment of asking.

For a few decades, it felt kind of nice to be that small, insignificant and decidedly geekish runt of any UN party who was widely known to be easy.

It’s kind of hard though to hang on to certain monopolies. Look at the realm of politics, for instance: It’s so much like the world of fashion. One moment you’re the only kid on the block to wear an Arafat scarf and the next, the whole world and its hawkish little Likud brother join in:

“JERUSALEM, June 14Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said Sunday that he is willing to support the creation of a Palestinian state, for the first time making a commitment that the United States, Europe and the Arab nations have pushed for since he took office.”

Okay, he immediately added a few conditions to this support, which, added up, translated into the Likud’s more traditional ‘When Hell freezes over’ message – but still: If even the likes of Bibi feel the need to express a certain type of tolerance towards ideas they find utterly distasteful, you know that your tolerance franchise might soon be facing any number of hostile takeovers .

It’s not just in the political power game though, that people have been gorging themselves on these tolerance stimulants. If it were, you could dismiss it as yet another Obama effect. No, it must be feared that the rot is much deeper.


(Oh, happy days indeed…)

Remember how socially conservative Spain used to be? For centuries, the Catholic church had the kind of stranglehold on Spanish society that led from the famed Spanish Inquisition to the Church blessed public stranglings of convicts in General Franco’s days. Those happy repressive times seem to be over, alas:

“As niche package tours go it is one of the most original and precisely targeted. As of this week, British lesbians are being invited to dig into their pockets, catch a flight to the Spanish costas and come back either pregnant, married or both. The offer comes from a fertility clinic and a gay and lesbian travel agency, which have launched joint package tours to what has now become one of the most socially tolerant countries in Europe.”

In other words, we now have Israeli hawks, crooning ‘Don’t cry for me, Palestina’, while the Spanish tourist board has turned the country’s various costas into one gigantic Lesbos style Smörgåsbord.

So, where does that leave Holland, when it come to its old tolerance patent?

That’s an easy one. It leaves us well and truly buggered and half-drowning in shit creek, with a paddle stuck up our collective little orange butt…


… and no, I’m not exaggerating. Look at what they’re up to in New Zealand these days, for God’s sake:

“In Dunedin, New Zealand, every year two Rugby teams of sevens go to battle fully starkers. The nude rugby international, which started as a celebration of New Zealand’s national nude day, was held yesterday as a warm-up to the forthcoming match between the All Blacks and France.”

Nice. So, Bibi’s opening up to Palestinians, Spain welcomes lesbians and New Zealand has turned into one huge freaking streaking show…

No wonder some people in Holland are starting to rethink this whole tolerance game. We are a nation of traders, after all, so we do know about markets – and if everyone is trying to flog the same kind of shit, it’s better to try and seek out pastures new.

Which is why it came to pass that a certain new political party in Holland decided to give up on tolerance and to take another road instead.

Enter Geert Wilders and his Post Tolerance Party, as reported on this lovely, if slightly bilious blog:

“Mr. Wilders appeared on Danish television yesterday. After being pressed by the interviewer, he acknowledged that millions of Muslims — those who support jihad and shariah, and oppose the democratic societies that they live in — will have to be deported from Europe.

He says, “There’s only one solution.””

Okay, it may not be exactly a new road…

Still, I’m sure it has more potential for profit than the boring old tolerance market.

(To paraphrase Monty Python’s ‘The Life of Brian’: What has tolerance ever done for us…?)

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