Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Norwegian Company has to Close its Dutch Tank Farm

The Norwegian company Odfjell has under heavy pressure decided to entirely close for the moment its tank farm in the Rotterdam region. The company’s director Laurence Odfjell has admitted that the facilities do not meet environmental and safety standards. It will have to replace all cooling and extinguishing facilities on its more than 140 tanks with new ones. The company has apologized for its failures and hopes that the safety shutdown and restoration plans will remove the protests in society regarding its activities. The Dutch Environmental and Safety authorities consider the safety shutdown the correct response in view of the situation at Odfjell.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Young Criminals were Problematic under Age 12

Of the 600 leading criminals in Amsterdam, half already behaved highly problematically before they reached the age of 12. They often have friends who are also criminals, or members of their families who have police records. About half of all these criminals are psychiatrically disturbed, or have minor intellectual limitations. The municipal health service (GDD) considers that the only way to keep these people straight is lengthy personal care by the authorities, not only for the youngsters, but also for their environment.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Waste of Hospital Money for Expensive Equipment

In many hospitals in the Netherlands, expensive equipment is used unnecessarily. This was stated by Anton Westerlaken, Chairman of the Board of the Maasstad Hospital in Rotterdam. He gave as one example that in Dutch hospitals, 44 PET scans are installed, while only 9 are needed. Each of these costs 3 million Euro. This means that the waste in this field alone is about 100 million Euro. Westerlaken claims that this derives from the competition in the Dutch hospitals.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Government Inspectorates not Critical Enough

The various inspectorate services of the government should operate far more independently and professionally. Their critical attitudes have declined. This is the result of the fact that the inspectorates consider the businesses and institutions they inspect as clients who should be served. There is now a generation of inspectors in the Netherlands which is no longer trained properly. This was said by Ben Ale, Professor of Security at the Technical University in Delft. He mentioned that in the Rotterdam tank storage firm Odfjell, the storage tanks have not been inspected for more than 30 years. This also means that the relevant environmental body hasn’t undertaken any action there.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Strong Increase in Cannabis Users Treated

About 11,000 people are being treated by institutions for therapy of cannabis addiction. Four out of ten are younger than 25 years old. In 2000, the number of people treated was 3,000. In 2009, about 150,000 people in the Netherlands use cannabis daily. These are the findings of the new National Drug Monitor.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Wilders Calls on EU Commissioner to Resign

Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders has written an open letter to Swedish EU Commissioner Cecilia Malmström. He said that her behavior may make Dutchmen view Sweden less positively than has been the case in the past. He accused her of wanting EU domination, where others wanted freedom. Wilders wrote: “No Dutchman has voted for you. We don’t know who you are. We don’t know you, but you force your ideas on our people.” He called on Malmström not to confuse multi-cultural ideas with the reality. Wilders mentioned that mass immigration meant for the Netherlands more criminality, more dependence on social payments, hindrance, alienation and education problems. He advised her to come and live in a Dutch Islamized neighborhood and asked her whether he could help her find an apartment there. He called on Malmström to resign.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Café Owner Heavily Fined for Protecting Customers against Raven Excrement

The owner of a tea house in Leiden has been fined 5,000 Euro because he put up two sun umbrellas to protect his customers from raven excrement. He had no building permission for putting up the shades on wheels and the municipality claims that such permission is required. The man paid the fine in order to remain on good terms with the municipality. He will now have to chase the ravens away with rattles.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Major Pension Funds Lower Payouts

The four leading Dutch pension funds have announced that they will decrease pension payouts in 2013 due to the fall in interest rates. The last one to announce this is the one of workers in the care sector (PFZW). It will also increase the premium for the pensions for those who are currently still working. There is a threat that in 2014, further cuts will be necessary by the four leading funds. The problems that the major funds incur indicate that additional pension funds will face difficulties.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Arsonists Burn Town Hall

Two cars drove into the Town Hall of the village of Waalre. One car drove at the front entrance, the other at the emergency exit. The old part of the town hall, an historical monument, has been irreparably damaged. It is unclear whether the remainder of it can be salvaged. The police have announced that this is a case of arson.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Curaçao: Dutch Airline Personnel Pressured to Smuggle Drugs


Personnel of the Dutch Arkefly airline is being pressured by criminals on the island of Curaçao to smuggle cocaine to the Netherlands on the company’s flights there. This was said by Arkefly’s director Steven van der Heijden. A few weeks ago an employee of the company was arrested with a large quantity of cocaine in her luggage.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Local counselors call for Fines for Weather Forecasters

Labor Party counselors in the town of Hoek van Holland said that bad weather forecasts are spoiling the tourist trade. They therefore want the weather forecasters to pay fines if their forecasts are wrong. A hotel owner in the town said that “recent weather reporting has been completely inaccurate and it is hitting local businesses dearly because people are cancelling bookings. I agree they should be fined on the grounds of disseminating incorrect information.”

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Ambulances Regularly Arrive Late

According to the norms, ambulances in 95% of emergencies such as life threatening situations and serious traffic accidents have to arrive at the scene within 15 minutes. However, in 320 out of the 415 Dutch communities, the norms are not met. On the basis of an analysis of 1.3 million cases, the ambulances arrive on time in 93% of the cases. The average however, is not representative because in large communities, they are frequently on time, whereas in the peripheries, it doesn’t even reach 90%. The worst is the Millingen aan de Rijn community, where, in 84% of the cases, the ambulance arrives too late.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Increase in Maltreatment of Children

In 2011, almost 66,000 cases of child abuse were reported to the AMK Monitoring office. On the basis of this, 19,254 investigations were carried out. Both the number of abuses reported and the investigations increased by 6% over previous years. In 8 out of 10 cases, the investigations carried out showed that there was indeed child abuse discovered. This was reported in the annual report of the youth care organization Jeugdzorg Nederland. The organization states that the increase could also be due to better reporting.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

First Pictures ever of Executions by Dutch in Indonesia

The first pictures ever of executions by the Dutch in Indonesia, then the Dutch Indies, in the first years after the Second World War have been published more than 60 years later. Experts of the Dutch Institute for War Documentation and the Dutch Institute for Military History state that they have never seen such pictures. Three Indonesians are seen with their backs to the people who fired at them. Next to them is a trench full of people who were executed. Historians have no doubt about the veracity of the pictures.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

New Control System Promotes Illegal Sale of Soft Drugs

In the three southern provinces of the Netherlands, an identity card was introduced on 1 May which permits people to buy in so-called “coffee shops” which sell soft drugs. Research by Nicole Maalste and Rutger Jan Hebben on behalf of the Epicurus Foundation have shown that as a result, illegal street sales of soft drugs have greatly increased and a major and uncontrollable networks has been created of street dealers who can be called for supplies. The price of soft drugs on the street is at least 25% lower than in coffee shops. In particular, those in the age group of 18-24 and non-Western immigrants buy in the street. There is a risk that the illegal dealers also sell other drugs so that youngsters come into contact with hard drugs. The police have insufficient capacity to deal with the problem. The identity card will also be introduced into the remainder of the Netherlands in 2013.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Professional Foreign Shoplifters Major Problem

There are about 4,000 professional shop thieves in the Netherlands, almost 20% of them comes from Eastern Europe. Poles, Bulgarians, Romanians and Lithuanians don’t see it as a problem if they end up in a Dutch jail because they consider their stay in the prison as a “rest period.” These foreigners cause damages of 120 million Euro a year – about a third of the entire damage caused by shoplifting in the Netherlands. These data result from a report by the National Police Service (KLPD.)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Mayor: Many Inhabitants of Amsterdam Have Low IQ

One in eight inhabitants of Amsterdam is slightly retarded. This means that they have an IQ of between 70 and 85. These results are from an inquiry ordered by Amsterdam Mayor Eberhard Van der Laan (Labor) Nabt . The mayor is afraid that changes in government policy will mean that in particular, slightly retarded youngsters will have to be dealt with by regular youth care rather than by specialized services.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Netherlands Major Base for Cyber Criminality

After the United States, the Netherlands is the major base in the world for cyber criminality. About 15% of malicious software originates in the country. One important reason that so many distributers of viruses operate from the Netherlands is because of its very good internet structure. According to the leading research organization TNO, the cost of cyber criminality to Dutch society is at least 10 billion Euro. One out of three Dutch internet users has been a victim of a virus attack in the last half year. This results from data of Kaspersky, an authority in the field of cyber crime.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

No Dutch Police Corps Respects Privacy

None of the 25 Dutch police corps respects the rules of privacy of civilians. This was published by the digital civil rights movement, Bits of Freedom. It came to this conclusion on the basis of internal police reports. This breaking of the law on police data (Wet Politiegegevens) concerns both suspects and people who submit complaints. The norms laid down by law are also transgressed on a large scale by the Dutch military police.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Memorial Stones for Auschwitz Victims Stolen

In the town of Oude Pekela, two stumbling stones in memory of Jews who were murdered in Auschwitz were stolen. These stones are being placed in many countries in front of buildings where Holocaust victims lived. According to Andries Brans of the Committee for Stolpersteine Pekela, the inventor of the stones the German artist Gunther Demnig, more than 30,000 stones have been placed so far and none have been stolen in the past. Replacement stones will be brought in.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Another Professor Resigns after Cheating

Professor Dirk Smeesters who taught Consumer Behavior and Society at Erasmus University in Rotterdam has resigned. In his articles, which have been withdrawn, are findings which seem highly improbable statistically. The data on which his research was based were no longer available when asked for. According to the university, Smeesters himself has admitted that “he has selected the data in a way that the results he wanted became statistically significant.” In November 2011, the fraud by another professor at the same university, Don Poldermans became known. In September it became known that Diederik Stapel of the University of Tilburg had greatly cheated on results of research.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Record Number of Bankruptcies Expected

A record number of bankruptcies are expected this year in the Netherlands. In the past half year, almost as many businesses went bankrupt as in the same period in 2009 – the worst year so far. This was reported by the TV station NOS. Marcel Theunis, a specialist in the field, said that initially mainly small businesses and start-ups went bankrupt. Nowadays, many more businesses which have been around for a number of years are collapsing.