On Sunday we were one the first websites to share a video from Dutch comedian Arjen Lubach, host of the Dutch version of the Daily Show, with the world.
The satirical video went viral on the internet and in just a few days 50 million people across the globe watched the introduction video to the Netherlands to Donald Trump on Youtube. Of course, the creator of the video was just trying to do his job as a comedian. After all, that’s what comedians do. But behind every laugh lays a little bit of truth.
For those of you who still have a few questions after watching the video, here are a few answers.
William I, Prince of Orange (24 April 1533 – 10 July 1584), also widely known as William the Silent or William the Taciturn or more commonly known as William of Orange , was the main leader of the Dutch revolt against the Spanish Habsburgs that set off the Eighty Years’ War and resulted in the formal independence of the United Provinces in 1581. He was born in the House of Nassau as Count of Nassau-Dillenburg. He became Prince of Orange in 1544 and is thereby really the founder of the branch House of Orange-Nassau and the ancestor of the monarchy of the Netherlands.
A wealthy nobleman, William originally served the Habsburgs as a member of the court of Margaret of Parma, governor of the Spanish Netherlands. Unhappy with the centralisation of political power away from the local estates and with the Spanish persecution of Dutch Protestants, William joined the Dutch uprising and turned against his former masters.
The most influential and politically capable of the rebels, William led the Dutch to several successes in the fight against the Spanish in a war that really lasted 80 years. Declared an outlaw by the Spanish king in 1580, he was assassinated by Balthasar Gérard in Delft in 1584.
But that is not the real reason for the Dutch to ‘dislike’ the Spanish. The Dutch are no different than other people in that they sometimes hold a grudge. But, unlike Donald Trump they won’t hold it for more than 400 years. In fact, in the summer Spain knows how is feels to be colonized but the Dutch, as their beaches are flooded with Dutch tourists, who like to spend their holiday in a country with a little more sunshine.
The real reason the Dutch are not fond of the Spanish is a lot less complicated (or even more). The Netherlands is a country where football (aka soccer) is by far the most popular sport. The Dutch like to see themselves as a modest, down-to-earth kind of people. Except when it come to their beloved ‘Orange’ national football team. This is why the Dutch really think the Spanish are “total scumbags”.
And if Mr Trump hesitates to pledge his allegiance to his fellow orange-blooded companions this is how the Dutch make people pay for their ‘sins’ and why they think the Spanish are “total losers”:
Dutch is a West Germanic language that is spoken in the European Union by about 23 million people as a first language—including most of the population of the Netherlands and about sixty percent that of Belgium—and by another 5 million as a second language. It is the third most widely spoken Germanic language, after German and English.
Dutch has developed over the course of 15 centuries. Old Dutch developed from Frankish, as it was spoken by the Salian Franks in the fifth century. Middle Dutch began in the late 11th century with the proliferation of a Medieval Dutch literature. Modern Dutch began in the late 15th century when the first attempts for a Standard language were made. Despite the worldwide influence of the Dutch Empire, modern Dutch spread only moderately around the world from the 17th to mid-20th centuries. Outside of the Low Countries, it is the native language of the majority of the population of Suriname, and also holds official status in Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten, which are constituent countries of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba (which lays a little more than 200 miles from Puerto Rico, and American ‘dependency’) are Dutch ‘municipalities’, making the Kingdom a neighbour country of the United States.
New York City, Mr Trump’s place of birth, traces its origin to its 1624 founding in Lower Manhattan as a trading post by colonists of the Dutch Republic and was named New Amsterdam in 1626. The city and its surroundings came under English control in 1664 and were renamed New York after King Charles II of England granted the lands to his brother, the Duke of York.
Historical minorities on the verge of extinction remain in parts of France and Germany, and in Indonesia, while up to half a million native speakers may reside in the United States, Canada and Australia combined. The Cape Dutch dialects of Southern Africa have evolved into Afrikaans, a mutually intelligible daughter language which is spoken to some degree by at least 16 million people, mainly in South Africa and Namibia.
Dutch is one of the closest relatives of both German and English and is said to be roughly in between them. Dutch, like English, has not undergone the High German consonant shift, does not use Germanic umlaut as a grammatical marker, has largely abandoned the use of the subjunctive, and has levelled much of its morphology, including most of its case system. Features shared with German include the survival of three grammatical genders—albeit with few grammatical consequences—as well as the use of modal particles, final-obstruent devoicing, and a similar word order. Dutch vocabulary is mostly Germanic and incorporates more Romance loans than German but fewer than English.
Do the Dutch really have there own ponypark? Yes, they do and yes it’s great! But only children are allowed to ride them, but if you really want to grab them by the pony you can! As long as you are granted permission ofcourse. It’s considered frowned upon to date them though. If you get caught you can expect an open letter from the Prime-Minister ‘kindly’ asking you to leave the country. If you would like to visit the park click here. Mr Putin loved it. He did. He loved it.
The Dutch are specialists in building all kinds of things. They don’t conquer other countries anymore, but instead they just build more land. They actually build an entire province called Flevoland. And yes, it’s protected from water, not just from Mexico, but all water, by the Afsluitdijk. Dikes are a Dutch ‘trademark’. With hurricane season approaching, Mr Trump can make great deals with the Netherlands to protect Americans against mother nature’s cries. Definitely a win-win situation. Mr Trump loves building and plans to modernize America’s infrastructure. After speaking to Theresa May and a little lovemaking with Russian buddy Vladimir Putin, the US president would do himself a favor to give his soon to be number two a call. PM Mark Rutte might not be in office after the March elections though, his nose has outgrown his pants by now, but he will definitely get along great with top favorite Geert Wilders. Mr Trump will love him! He hates Muslims too. He really hates them. Really.
So why don’t the Dutch like Mexico? Are there Mexican drug dealers, murderers and rapists roaming the streets looking for Doutzen Kroes look-a-likes? Nope. It comes down to the football again. Like Mr Trump the Dutch just don’t like sore losers. After Arjen Robben, the famous Bayern Munich football star, dived to win a penalty for Holland at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, which ultimately led to Mexico’s elimination, a little Mexican girl made an angry video that went viral too. As proven the Dutch have a great sense of humor, as long as the joke is not about them. They don’t like that. They hate it.
Who is this Lee Towers you ask? Well.. He is basicly the Dutch version of Frank Sinatra. Mr Trump’s favorite song ‘I did it my way’ is of course a song by Frank Sinatra. Lee Towers is mostly known for singing a song made famous by Liverpool FC called ‘You never walk alone’, adopted by Rotterdam based football team Feyenoord. The White House has a history of reality checking in sooner or later, so if the US president feels a little lonely after Melania ‘blinks twice’ Mr Towers can offer some Dutch comfort to the president and a little help to make the ‘Divided’ States of America united and great again. It will be great. He’s great.
Madurodam is a miniature park and tourist attraction in the Scheveningen district of The Hague in the Netherlands. It is home to a range of 1:25 scale model replicas of famous Dutch landmarks, historical cities and large developments. The park was opened in 1952 and has since been visited by tens of millions of visitors. The entirety of net proceeds from the park go towards various charities in the Netherlands. In 2012, Madurodam celebrated its 60th anniversary. It’s great, it’s tiny and it attracts more visitors than the presidential inauguration every year. All true. All true.
Who is Gerry Eickhoff? Uhm… He is a journalist that works for state television, who clearly loves to wear funny things on his head. Surely Mr Trump can relate to that and he can use a little help in his war with the despicable, lying, fake corporate media, who keep making fun of the unique ‘Trumpian’ hairstyle. Gerry never brings fake news. Never. He speaks the truth. Always. He is a Dutch truthspeaker.
Ministry of ‘silly walks’
Jellejetta (Jetta) Klijnsma is actually a real Dutch politician. As a member of the Labour Party she was an MP from 2010 to 2012. She focused on matters of culture, senior citizens, disabled people and medical ethics. Previously she was State Secretary for Social Affairs and Employment in the Fourth Balkenende cabinet. Since 2012 she has been State Secretary for Social Affairs and Employment, dealing with unemployment insurances (partial), equality, long-term unemployment, poverty, health and safety in the Second Rutte cabinet.
The Dutch love making fun of people. The Dutch make fun of everyone who isn’t Dutch. Especially the Germans. Not because of World War II, but also because of a lost World Cup final in 1974. They love insulting people so much that they have recently made a Dutch version of Mr Trump’s second favorite show, after The Apprentice of course, Comedy Central’s The Roast. The ratings were huge. The highest ratings ever for Comedy Central in the Netherlands. We don’t have the exact numbers, but the second Roast is already in the making. And probably with the same guest as the first time: Gordon. He’s a great artist. If there is one guy that loves to make fun of people, it’s Gorden. If the Donald needs a few good jokes to settle his trade war with China Gorden is definitely the one to call. And he will never refuse to perform in Washington. Never.
The Dutch love their lists. They are in the top ten of every list you can think of. No ‘alternative facts’, 100% true. The Dutch are number 3 on the list of the best countries for foreign companies to go to if they want to avoid paying taxes. You just make a deal with IRS, shut up about it, and go on with your business. No questions asked. Here is how it works:
The Dutch Sandwich is a tax avoidance strategy that some multinational corporations use to lower their corporate tax liability. The strategy uses payments between related entities in a corporate structure to shift income from a higher-tax country to a lower-tax country.
In the scheme, revenues from sales of a product shipped by an Irish company is booked by a shell company in the Netherlands, taking advantage of generous tax laws there. This is usually the second part of the scheme is referred to as the “Double Irish with Dutch Sandwich”. The remaining profits are transferred directly to Cayman Islands or Bermuda, known as a Bermuda Black Hole.
For example, Google’s main operating company is based in Ireland. Google’s tax structure involves six territories, resulting in overall payment of just 2.4% tax on all operations outside the United States. To avoid paying income taxes in Ireland, it transfers the profits out of the jurisdiction. Ireland has a high tax on such transfers to a tax haven jurisdiction like Bermuda, so the profits are transferred to the Netherlands, easily done as an EU co-member. From there the profits can be transferred to Bermuda, at little cost, which has no corporate income tax. In 2009, Google reported a gross profit of €5.5bn, but an operating profit of €45m after subtracting “administrative expenses” of €5.467bn. Administrative expenses comprised mainly royalties or a licence fee which Google pays its Bermuda headquarters for the right to operate. Et voila. And done. Amazon and Starbucks love it too. They do. It’s true.
Sinterklaas is the Dutch version of Santa Claus. But instead of elves he brings his assistant Zwarte Piet (Black Pete) along with him to give all the Dutch children presents and candy as a reward for good behaviour. Is painting your face black, so the kids don’t know that Zwarte Piet is actually their uncle Donald, racist? Well, the Dutch don’t think so. They really don’t.
NATO. Very important. The Dutch are not only founding fathers of the European Union, they are also one of the initiators of NATO. The Treaty of Brussels, signed on 17 March 1948 by Belgium, Luxembourg, France, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands is considered the precursor to the NATO agreement. The treaty and the Soviet Berlin Blockade led to the creation of the Western European Union’s Defence Organization in September 1948. However, participation of the United States was thought necessary both to counter the military power of the USSR and to prevent the revival of nationalist militarism. In addition the 1948 Czechoslovak coup d’état by the Communists had overthrown a democratic government and British Foreign Minister Ernest Bevin reiterated that the best way to prevent another Czechoslovakia was to evolve a joint Western military strategy. He got a receptive hearing, especially considering American anxiety over Italy (and the Italian Communist Party).
In 1948 European leaders met with US defense, military and diplomatic officials at the Pentagon, under US Secretary of State George C. Marshall’s orders, exploring a framework for a new and unprecedented association. Talks for a new military alliance resulted in the North Atlantic Treaty, which was signed in Washington, DC on 4 April 1949. It included the five Treaty of Brussels states plus the United States, Canada, Portugal, Italy, Norway, Denmark and Iceland. The first NATO Secretary General, Lord Ismay, stated in 1949 that the organization’s goal was “to keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down.” Popular support for the Treaty was not unanimous, and some Icelanders participated in a pro-neutrality, anti-membership riot in March 1949. The creation of NATO can be seen as the primary institutional consequence of a school of thought called Atlanticism which stressed the importance of transAtlantic cooperation.
The members agreed that an armed attack against any one of them in Europe or North America would be considered an attack against them all. Consequently, they agreed that, if an armed attack occurred, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defence, would assist the member being attacked, taking such action as it deemed necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area. The treaty does not require members to respond with military action against an aggressor. Although obliged to respond, they maintain the freedom to choose the method by which they do so. This differs from Article IV of the Treaty of Brussels, which clearly states that the response will be military in nature. It is nonetheless assumed that NATO members will aid the attacked member militarily. The treaty was later clarified to include both the member’s territory and their “vessels, forces or aircraft” above the Tropic of Cancer, including some Overseas departments of France.
The creation of NATO brought about some standardization of allied military terminology, procedures, and technology, which in many cases meant European countries adopting US practices. The roughly 1300 Standardization Agreements (STANAG) codified many of the common practices that NATO has achieved. Hence, the 7.62×51mm NATO rifle cartridge was introduced in the 1950s as a standard firearm cartridge among many NATO countries. Fabrique Nationale de Herstal’s FAL, which used 7.62 NATO cartridge, was adopted by 75 countries, including many outside of NATO. Also, aircraft marshalling signals were standardized, so that any NATO aircraft could land at any NATO base. Other standards such as the NATO phonetic alphabet have made their way beyond NATO into civilian use.
Article 5 of the North Atlantic treaty, requiring member states to come to the aid of any member state subject to an armed attack, was invoked for the first and only time after the September 11 attacks, after which troops were deployed to Afghanistan under the NATO-led ISAF. The organization has operated a range of additional roles since then, including sending trainers to Iraq, assisting in counter-piracy operations and in 2011 enforcing a no-fly zone over Libya in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 1973. The less potent Article 4, which merely invokes consultation among NATO members, has been invoked five times: by Turkey in 2003 over the Iraq War; twice in 2012 by Turkey over the Syrian Civil War, after the downing of an unarmed Turkish F-4 reconnaissance jet, and after a mortar was fired at Turkey from Syria; in 2014 by Poland, following the Russian intervention in Crimea; and again by Turkey in 2015 after threats by the Islamic State to its territorial integrity.
NATO is as important to the Dutch as it is to all its members. Including the United States. If Donald Trump continues to seek conflict with world leaders across the globe and with his own bordering countries Mexico and Canada, the United States will need NATO more than NATO will need America. Plans to form an EU army have already been set in motion. As one of the top 5 arms dealers in the world, guess who leads the effort to rebrand NATO to a European/North American alliance? It’s the Dutch.
By not funding over a quarter of NATO anymore the only problem the Netherlands have is the obvious money issue. If there is one thing the Dutch value more than anything, it’s money. Mr Trump surely can relate to that. He is a businessman. Not a politician. The Dutch invented global trade. They love making deals. Mr Trump loves making deals and the deal is: America first, the Netherlands second. For the Dutch silver is gold. They bleed orange. Not red. They don’t. They were not kidding! Here is the petition.
Update: German jealousy
In a petty attempt to thwart the Dutch, who still have dibs on second place, Germany (who else), had their famous comedian Jan Böhmermann produce a German video for Donald Trump. By Friday (February 3), seven videos had been posted on a website called ‘Every Second Counts ,’ including contributions from Denmark, Belgium and Lithuania.