Political Quirks - Issues
Posts in the Issues category.
I recently got a mail from a reader who asked an interesting question. He also made a donation to this site as an incentive for me to write a piece about it.
Until I received that mail I didn’t know I did such things, but live and learn.
Raphael’s question is:
How is it that, in matters of sex and drugs, the Netherlands got such a reputation as being one of the most culturally liberal countries in the world in the last few decades of the 20th century? That is not what you would expect from a country where politics used to be dominated by men like Abraham Kuyper. Yes, you mention that things changed a lot in the 1960s and 1970s, but they did that in a lot of other countries, too.
Three weeks ago the Teeven affair came to a head with Security and Justice minister Van der Steur resigning. This is generally seen as a serious problem for prime minister and VVD leader Rutte, so I’m afraid I’m going to have to treat it.
The affair is nothing new; in fact, Opstelten, the previous Security and Justice minister, resigned over it in 2015. I have been postponing and postponing a post about this affair, since it’s complicated and mostly boring — the ultimate in Dutch inside political baseball.
But here we go.
It is a common misconception that hashish and weed are legal in the Netherlands. They’re not. However, they are tolerated; that is, if a coffeeshop obeys certain strict regulations, it is allowed to sell hashish or weed to the general public, including tourists. This policy was set by justice minister (1973-1977) and prime minister (1977-1981) Van Agt (CDA), and has been in place ever since.
This is the political blog of Peter-Paul Koch, mobile platform strategist, consultant, and trainer,
in Amsterdam. It’s a hobby blog where he follows Dutch politics for the benefit of those twelve
foreigners that are interested in such matters, as well as his Dutch readers.
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