Blog, News

Will it FAIL? The Dutch Press Correspondents’ Dinner

Date: Wednesday, February 10, 2016
Category: Blog, News

10 Feb., 2016 I just got a call from a Dutch morning TV show asking “Is tonight’s Dutch Press Correspondents’ Dinner a good idea? And will it be a success?” My quick answer is this: If you keep smearing the thing before you’ve even seen it, then the answer is probably NO. Now yes, I’ve been asked to contribute some jokes for Rutte’s comedy routine. I doubt anything will make it in. But if you hear the one about Geert […]

New English Comedy Nights in The Hague – Finally!

Date: Sunday, February 7, 2016
Category: Blog, News

3 NEW ENGLISH COMEDY INITIATIVES IN THE HAGUE 7 February, 2016 In the heady days before 2008, Diligentia Theater would bring international comedians to play for the huge numbers of English speakers in The Hague. Dylan Moran, Steve Hughes, and sometimes Boom Chicago. Then OOPS. It all stopped. Why? There was certainly no decline in English speakers, but there was no one bringing international comedians to the Hague. Frustrating! And the slap in the face was the international comediansstill coming to […]

How Racist is Brexit Camp? An Experiment

Date: Saturday, February 6, 2016
Category: Blog, News

SO I joined a Facebook group called ‘EU Exit Debate,’ expecting to find both Brexit & Bremain camps represented. You know, like a debate. In fact, it’s almost exclusively anti-immigrant stories like … ‘Somali migrants practicing Sharia law in UK’ and ‘Europe Needs to Destroy Islam.’ As an experiment, I posted a NYT piece about how Iraqi refugees are not finding a welcome home in Europe and returning home. I posted the piece with the title ‘WE CAN MAKE A […]

Is Hillary the Most EU-Friendly?

Date: Friday, February 5, 2016
Category: Blog, News

4 Feb, 2016 Dear EU, are you sick of US election coverage already? Don’t worry. Only 10 more months to go. So by now the EU should know the main candidates: Bernie, Hillary, Trump and …Ted Cruz? Yes. He was born in Canada as Rafael Cruz, and now he’s running for President as an American named Ted. With the Slogan ‘TrusTED.’ Because that’s not his real name. Try to keep up, yes? What would any of these candidates mean for […]

Hillary, Bernie, or Geert Wilders?

Date: Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Category: Blog, News

Voting Your Conscience. Hillary, Bernie or Wilders? 3 Feb., 2016 While Bernie & Hillary supporters lash it out on Facebook, here’s a cautionary tale from the Netherlands – and a question. This is a tale of two elections: 2010 and 2012. Yes, the Netherlands has a Parliamentary system, and there’s a ruling coalition. But – like America – there’s usually a big shakeup every 8 years, where both sides of the aisle have a chance to regain leadership and reshape […]

Shit May DAVOS Says – a Translation Guide to World Economic Forum

Date: Saturday, January 23, 2016
Category: Blog, News

21 Jan, 2016 “Shit My DAVOS Says” WATCH: SH*T MY DAVOS SAYS This week’s ‘United States of Europe’ update: a Translation Guide to the headlines from Davos. The World Economic Forum: the world’s richest men gathering on a mountaintop so they can shit on the rest of us. What is the World Economic Forum? It’s easy to think of it like Spectre – a group of evil white men gathering in Switzerland to take over the world, which sounds dangerous and […]

3 Ways Dutch Diplomacy Is Different

Date: Friday, January 15, 2016
Category: Blog, News

This week’s ‘United States of Europe’ update: ‘3 Ways Dutch Diplomacy is Different.’ For the first half of 2016, EU summits will be hosted by the Netherlands. The Dutch are known for their belief in equality. Specifically, if you act bigger than everyone else, they’ll cut you off at the knees. The Dutch are also known for being tolerant. But that doesn’t mean they’re not still judgmental as hell. Here are my 3 reasons Dutch diplomacy is different. 1) DUTCH […]

3 Ways Dutch Summits are Different

Date: Wednesday, January 13, 2016
Category: Blog, News

This week’s ‘United States of Europe’ update: Meet the new hosts of the EU Presidency: the Dutch! They’re responsible for microscopes, wifi, the fact that carrots are orange – and for some of the most convoluted decision-making the world has ever seen. For the first half of 2016, EU summits will be hosted by the Netherlands, a culture based on the paradox “How can a meeting start out so productive, but then end so differently?” Here are my 3 reasons […]

Dutch Green Tech – Why Isn’t Everyone Doing This?

Date: Tuesday, January 12, 2016
Category: Blog, News

[As printed in Hollands Glorie magazine, December 2015]   As the Netherlands hosts the EU Presidency in 2016, it’s a chance to show off Dutch progress on the environment – just not at the governmental level. Historically, when it comes to environmental innovation, the Netherlands has a lot to brag about. And these days there’s also plenty to brag about, but there’s not a lot of bragging going on. Why?Because the current Dutch government doing so little to limit carbon emissions […]

Housing Quiz 2015 ‘How to Be Dutch’

Date: Wednesday, December 16, 2015
Category: Blog, News

Housing Quiz, 2015 (as printed in XPat Journal, Nov 2015) Welcome to the Netherlands. You’re going to need a place to live. What should you expect? Here are some helpful quiz questions, based on my own personal research and submissions from readers of my book ‘How to Be Orange.’ Question 1: When you get the keys to your new Dutch housing, what can you expect? A – Set of keys, with extremely detailed explanation how to use them. B – […]