Dutch news in brief, Friday 25 May 2009

25th May 2009, Comments 0 comments

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

Balkenende has too much faith in market: Bos
“Bos criticises PM” reads a headline in the mass-circulation daily De Telegraaf.

The paper says Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Wouter Bos openly denounced views recently expressed by Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende on the causes of the worldwide credit crisis.

“The minister believes the PM is naïve for thinking that greedy bankers are responsible for the crisis, not the market system itself.”

Speaking on Buitenhof – a political discussion programme on television – on Sunday, the finance minister discussed an opinion piece which the prime minister wrote for the NRC Handelsblad last week.

Bos said he disagreed with Balkenende’s conclusion that the crisis was caused by human failure and the system was sound.

“If a robbery occurs you not only confront the burglar, but also improve security and ensure that the police take action. We should be less naïve when it comes to believing in the market (as the only solution).”

De Telegraaf points out Bos’s remarks are noteworthy because they come a week and a half before the Europe elections, and was made in his capacity as a minister and not as the leader of the Labour Party.

Amsterdam hospital sets up unit for lovesick people
The Free University medical centre in Amsterdam will open an outpatients’ clinic for a day on 6 June to treat love pangs.

“Butterflies in the stomach, red cheeks, lack of appetite and pain in the heart: Love can lead to a range of intense emotions,” reports de Telegraaf.

This kind of outpatients’ clinic is no luxury. The newspaper quotes a visitor to a women’s web-site: “You can literally and figuratively get lovesick, and I speak from experience. I am over it now, but I wish that I had help at the time.”

Patients will undergo a series of tests to see if they are suffering from lovesickness. A neuropsychological study will be used to determine if you are “in the clouds”. An echo will determine where “the butterflies are located”. An electrocardiogram will investigate if the heart is broken. And an eye study will be conducted to see if you “look through rose-coloured glasses”.

Blood tests will also be conducted to determine the levels of hormones and neurotransmitters which play a role in love. If the outpatients’ clinic is successful, similar first aid units may open in the future.

Dutch railway stations need 150,000 parking places for bikes
The Dutch railway authorities expect the shortage of parking places for bikes at their stations to rise to nearly 150,000 in the next three years as an increasing number of people cycle to the station.

De Telegraaf reports the Dutch cyclists’ union has made an emergency appeal to the government to take quick measures to deal with the problem.

Many Dutch stations are drowning in a sea of bicycles parked all over the place. Around 40 percent of train passengers use the bike to travel to the station.

Radio Netherlands / Frank Scimone / Expatica

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