A Manifesto for Hope, Optimism and Recovery
14 september 2023 | Forum for Democracy Intl
Forum for Democracy
The Netherlands’ largest political party in terms of members
Draft election programme 2023 – 2027
Presented for approval to the Party Congress to be held on 30 September 2023
On 22 November, more than 13 million Dutch citizens with the right to vote will decide the direction our country will take in the coming years.
Continuing on the same path will not work, as the past few years have shown: the absurd climate policy has made life unaffordable; no one can buy a house any more; immigration has disrupted our society; woke propaganda is disturbing the normal development of children; nonsensical nitrogen policy is pushing farmers off their land and pulverising the economy; globalist organisations are eroding democracy and imposing censorship on social media, lockdowns, digital money (CBDC) and even bringing us to the brink of war with Russia.
A fundamental change of direction is needed.
In this manifesto, you will read Forum for Democracy's plans. Our concrete proposals for the short term but also that dot on the horizon where we ultimately want to go - our vision for the country, our long-term perspective.
We still see ourselves as the flagship of the Renaissance fleet. We are partnering with existing organisations which have like-minded ideas - and we are setting up new organisations. We feel hope and optimism for the future. Recovery is coming. As far as we are concerned, from November 22!
On behalf of the largest member party in the country, we proudly present our Programme of Hope, Optimism and Recovery!
Joris van den Oetelaar
Twelve rules for the Netherlands
1. A sovereign Netherlands: we will steer towards an intelligent exit from the European Union. By the same token, the Netherlands' involvement in other international organisations (the European Court of Human Rights, the World Economic Forum, the World Health Organisation, NATO) should be reviewed. Dutch law should always take precedence over international treaties and agreements. As long as our involvement in such organisations continues, we demand full openness and transparency by removing the exemption ground of Article 5.1 of the Open Government Act.
2. Democratic renewal: we will give power back to citizens through the immediate introduction of binding referendums on the Swiss model. Public officials such as mayors will no longer be appointed but instead will be directly elected by the people.
3. Freedom, unconditionally: we will submit a Freedom Act which will make it impossible for future governments ever again to introduce lockdowns, obligatory vaccination, documents required for entry to public places, and other degrading restrictions on freedom. An anti-censorship law will secure freedom of speech and free debate.
4. Preserve cash: there will be a legal right to cash payments and an obligation for banks to disburse customers' bank balances in cash free of charge. We will never agree to the introduction of a Central Bank Digital Currency, indeed we will make the necessary preparations for a Dutch exit from the euro.
5. Protect children: there will be a ban on transgender propaganda in schools and youth TV programmes. It will also become impossible for minors to undergo gender reassignment surgery and to take hormone therapy or puberty blockers. An independent commission will examine political interference in school textbooks and reduce it as much as possible.
6. Really tackle immigration: we will freeze naturalisations for at least 10 years. The government will offer support to immigrants to return to their country of origin. We will introduce a Green Card based on the American model, aimed at strengthening the Dutch economy and society. We will offer political asylum to Julian Assange and Edward Snowden.
7. Peace in Ukraine: the Netherlands will act as a mediator to facilitate peace negotiations between Russia, Ukraine and NATO to achieve a ceasefire as soon as possible and end the senseless bloodshed on our continent.
8. Affordable energy: we will put an end to all forms of climate policy, nitrogen policy and so-called 'sustainability'. To make energy affordable again, we will reopen the Dutch coal-fired power plants, restart gas drilling in Groningen and invest in the construction of two new nuclear reactors. The 1,000 billion euros we will save with this change of course will be given back to Dutch citizens in the form of tax relief.
9. The best health care in the world: we will allocate more money for nurses and put an end to bureaucratic red tape in care. Care of the elderly will get the attention it deserves. We will fundamentally review youth care, especially where financial incentives and out-of-home placements are concerned.
10. Delta plan for education: in-service training for teachers aimed at raising the general level of education. We will give vocational education the prestige it deserves by reintroducing diplomas for crafts. Not everyone needs to go to university. There will be additional compensation for the 'unlucky generation' (2015-2023) which missed out on the basic grant. Dutch will once again become the language of instruction in secondary and university education.
11. The Netherlands on the move again: the speed limit on motorways will be raised to 130 km/h and faster where possible. We will abolish average speed check zones and reduce excise duties on fuel, the additional tax imposed on anyone who drives more than 500km per year, and the tax on vehicle purchases. Car owners will pay road tax only once, even if they have several vehicles. No more environmental zones in cities: fuel cars welcome everywhere. We will start the construction process for a new airport in the North Sea. Until then, Schiphol will get all the space it needs to continue fulfilling its crucial economic role.
12. Freedom for entrepreneurs and tax reduction for all: we will lower the burden for small and medium sized enterprises and the self-employed, and put an end to the government's regulatory zeal. The threshold for high corporate tax will rise to €1 million and the amount deductible from profit for the self-employed will be increased to €15,000. Radical simplification of tax, contribution and benefit system. We will set a tax-free base of €30,000 for every working Dutchman and bring VAT back down to 6% and 19%, so that work will start to pay and the hospitality, retail and service sectors can pick up again.