Dutch news in brief, Monday 13 July 2009

13th July 2009, Comments 0 comments

Read the roundup of today's Dutch press from Radio Netherlands.

Dutch literary giant Simon Vinkenoog dies
All papers report Simon Vinkenoog on their front page and devote several pages to the 'Dutch beat poet'.

Since 1948, Vinkenoog has been a giant figure on the Dutch cultural landscape and has been credited with introducing poetry as a performing art form to the Netherlands.

NRC.next headlines its coverage with "always in the literary front line," and characterised him as someone who wanted to experience everything.

AD describes Vinkenoog as "a poet and writer of swinging sentences and inspired words," and ask: "poet, writer, cultural historian, philosopher, biographer, TV producer, hippie, dancer, marijuana grower, performer, teacher, father, lover and husband. What didn't he do?"

Deputy PM criticises cabinet
Dutch MPs are enjoying their summer recess and the cabinet has gone on holiday, but before setting off for his holiday home in France, Deputy Prime Minister André Rouvoet – leader of the right-wing Christian Union – fired a parting shot across the cabinet's bow in an interview with the De Telegraaf.

According to the deputy prime minister, the cabinet hasn’t achieved enough, adding: "Ordinary people think that we're far too involved with things that do not directly affect them or help them."

Rouvoet concluded: "We'll have to work harder after the summer recess".

His open criticism of the cabinet hasn't won him many friends though. AD covers the opposition's response: "Rouvoet should do some work himself for a change".

The paper writes that the opposition is in complete agreement with the deputy PM's assessment that the cabinet has achieved far too little.

VVD MP Edith Schippers said: "He's absolutely right, the cabinet doesn't done enough". Socialist Party leader Agnes Kant tells the paper: "Working hard won't do much good, this cabinet just doesn't understand what ordinary people need".
Troublesome taxi drivers to be banned
Taxis in Amsterdam have always been a source of trouble despite various measures to alleviate the problems. Some taxi drivers manipulate fair metres, take tourists on the longest possible route, refuse fares, are rudeness and fist fights between drivers for rival firms.

However, new measures introduced in the wake of last week's murder of a passenger by a taxi driver have proved extremely popular. Police are now allowed to ban taxi drivers who misbehave from taxi ranks in the city centre and a security firm has been hired to make sure things run smoothly.

"Everybody is happy with the security guards at the taxi ranks" writes de Volkskrant. The paper interviews a number of taxi drivers at ranks across the city and the general consensus seems to be: "Finally, something has been done to stop the price gouging and fist fights".

Economic crisis hits Premier League
AD reports the Premier League has been hit by recession with six clubs in the Dutch top division having less money to spend and several others are having trouble meeting their budgets.

However, the paper also reports that the 18 Premier League clubs will spend EUR 408.2 million this coming season, certainly not a sum to be sneezed at.

According to Heracles chairman Jan Smit, "six months ago everybody was behaving as though the economic crisis wouldn't hit professional football clubs," adding "maybe it's not so bad, players' salaries are still far too high".

Radio Netherlands / Jacqueline Carver / Expatica

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