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Our new Prime Minister: A "quick-wins" projectmanager?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010 · Category Politics · comments 0


Where the former cabinet under the leadership of Balkenende IV started the 2007 governmental year with a 100-day tour across the country to listen to the people, our new Prime Minister Mark Rutte (43) seems more like a projectmanager.

The first meeting of the cabinet Rutte I

When the cabinet was formed on the 14th of October, Prime Minister Mark Rutte (43) said: "We can start!" And that we have known. Not a days goes by without one of the ministers coming up with yet another "quick win". Reforms are nowhere to be seen. Cutting back the government deficit and yearly deficit are solely based on remediation policy and one after the other minister and state secretary is shouting out new concrete measures and decisions.

The ADHD-cabinet?

With his entourage of 60+ ministers the new cabinet was quickly nicknamed the "Rollator cabinet" and the "Grey I" cabinet. The new ministers seem obsessed by the idea to show decisiveness. After the first 3 weeks the new name buzzing around is the "ADHD-cabinet". The motto from this cabinet "Freedom and responsibility" seems to have changed to "Action, action and action".

Some points taken

1. Since the non-smoking ban has been activated in bars and restaurants, smaller one-man owned bars have seen a drastic decline in their customers and revenues. The new Minister from Public Health, Edith Schippers, has quickly put an end to the discussion. Small bars are open again for smoking.

2. For years there have been discussions, studies and architectural proposals for a new Dutch National Museum. State secretary Habbe Zijlstra has made an end to the discussions within two days after the start of the new cabinet. No new national Meseum. Reason? We have to cut back on our expenses. End of discussion!

Fred TeevenFred Teeven3. State secretary of Foreign Policy Ben Knaven needed only a few days to end some 40% of grants to development organisations or NGOs. Ben KnapenBen Knapen

4. Crimefighter Fred Teeven - State secretary from de department of security and justice - couldn't stay behind and announced that he will cut back the absentee leave of tbs-prisoners, close down some youth detention centers and grant more speaking time to victims in the courtrooms.

5. Grant Old minister of Security and Justice department, Ivo Opstelten (65), invited a journalist who wrote in an early morning paper that he wanted to wait with the abolition of the so-called police officers "quote vouchers" to tell the journalist that he will end this practise right away. The quote voucher politics ment that each police officer needed to reach a certain target of traffic fines each year. Exit the quota. Ivo OpsteltenIvo Opstelten

According to the prime minister, this is the policy that he likes. No more endless letters to the parliament describing the plans, just actions. Only in cases the cabinet wishes to present a larger detailed plan or if the parliament asks for more specific information will this cabinet answer with a letter.

We wait to see how long the euphoria will last. The measures taking seem mostly to please certain specific electorial groups who voted in favour of the ruling parties.


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