This is the most insignificant election in years

Interest rate hikes, economic homelessness and institutional racism. A lot is going wrong in the Netherlands and that will not change for the time being, thinks columnist Tom Grosfeld. Not even if you vote for a left-wing party in the elections. ‘It seems impossible to prevent a new right-wing coalition.’

Tom Grosfeld. Image Ton Toemen

We can almost vote and you hear here and there that these are more important elections than ever. The extreme right is advancing everywhere in Europe. Right-wing parties such as the VVD (and, for example, Macron in France) are increasingly moving towards that discourse, because they are afraid that their voters will otherwise defect. Ideals and a vision make way for an insatiable desire to maintain power. They no longer do their best to hide that desire.

The fact that the amount of injustice is piling up does not seem to bother those parties who are themselves responsible for it. Within the context of the university, this concerns, for example, the bizarre increase in interest rates on student debt and, measured over a longer period, the further neoliberalization of the university, turning it into a diploma and publication factory.

In a more general sense, you can think of the housing market that has been offered to investors as an investment object, which means that more and more people cannot buy a home or surf from bank to bank as ‘economically homeless’. The growth of economic inequality among citizens.

Institutional racism, with the most extreme expression of this being the benefits affair. Large companies that, ironically, are still allowed to avoid taxes. The seriousness of climate change that is still not taken seriously.

In the meantime, the VVD once again has a chance to become the largest party in the Netherlands. It says a lot about our indifference.

Can we still do something about that? Voting on the left is always wise: SP, Party for the Animals or BIJ1. You can also vote a little left and a little middle: GroenLinks/PvdA. Or you can think you are voting left, but actually voting right: D66 and Volt.

We can debate the best choice until we weigh an ounce, but the cynical message is that it doesn’t really matter. These are, I think, the most insignificant elections in years. It seems impossible in advance to prevent a new right-wing coalition, with the VVD or the comparable NSC as the largest party.

A strategic vote for ‘our’ Tilburg, very good Esmah Lahlah is then obvious, but even if GroenLinks/PvdA becomes the largest, there is still a very good chance that they will end up in a right-wing cabinet with the VVD and NSC. And we know how that ends.

There will come a time, sooner or later, when the left can clean up the debris left by the right. Until then, we have no choice but patience.

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