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Trading in the colours of the heart: The SP’s new development agenda

2 Sep 2015It’s 2015. The time to see Africa and poverty as irrevocably linked is past. Poverty is only one facet of Africa, one which unfortunately and unjustly still dominates its image. Poverty and inequality can, moreover, be found throughout the world, including in the Netherlands. There are also many positive developments in Africa: more than 90% of children now attend school, more is being invested than was the case twenty years ago and there is clear evidence of a growing self-awareness. Poverty has not disappeared, but in our view the post-colonial period characterised by traditional development aid is over. Along with it, a line must be drawn under the classic approach to development, where ‘aid’ was the dominant source of capital for many poor countries.  Also, the popular discussion around trade, in which it is seen as replacing aid, is somewhat wide of the mark, because this is a matter of Africa’s self-development. In this aid and trade are two of a number of sources of capital, which do not, moreover, stand in an unambiguous relationship towards each other.

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El Pepe

28 Aug 2015By Jan Marijnissen - There was a time - not so long ago – when almost every South- and Central American country was a dictatorship, in which the army played a decisive role. That time is past. From Argentina to Mexico democratic thinking now has the upper hand. Are things going well throughout Latin America? Not entirely, but for the left and progressives it’s a relief that the armies are where they should be, in the barracks. That opens up prospects for the future.

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The left in Europe must draw the lessons from Syriza’s defeat

27 Aug 2015By Dimitris Pavlopoplous — On 12th July what for the time being was the final act of the Greek tragedy came to an end. The hope that the left government could lighten the appalling lot of the people had not been realised. The agreement signed on that day means not only that Syriza’s moderately left programme has been abandoned, but also that Greece will continue on the path of harsh austerity and neoliberal reforms.

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Roemer: ‘The Netherlands could pay out a loan which the Greeks can’t sustain’

19 Aug 2015The SP will vote against any additional loans to Greece and the austerity package which accompanies them. According to party leader Emile Roemer, Greece’s medicine hasn’t worked. ‘I’d go further,’ he says, ‘the medicine for Greece has turned out to be a poison pill. Poverty has grown enormously, half of the young people have no job and wages are down by 37%. The Netherlands could pay for a loan which the Greeks can’t sustain. That the SP will therefore not do.’

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Merkies: ‘Austerity agreement is poison pill for Greece’

18 Aug 2015On Wednesday Parliament will debate the new loan agreement between the European Union and Greece. The SP will not be voting in favour of this agreement. ‘Once again the Greeks are being prescribed the bad medicine of inhuman austerity,’ says SP Member of Parliament and parliamentary spokesman on financial affairs Arnold Merkies. ‘This agreement is bad for Greece and bad for the Netherlands.’ We posed Merkies three questions on the accord.

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Europhiles are fracturing the European dream

13 Aug 2015On the evening of Wednesday June 1st, 2005, the SP gathered in Artis – Amsterdam’s zoo – to celebrate the victory in the referendum on the European Constitution. Two-thirds of Dutch voters had said ‘no’. Not to Europe, but to European politics. The world’s media were also amassed in Artis. Just as I began a live report for Fox News, a punk band began to play.

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