Thursday, September 15, 2011
No Holiday for King Albert
What has been happening there? Mr. Di Rupo has been giving the appearance of being ready to quit himself because of the political deadlock but did just finally reach one agreement on the division of Brussels-Halle-Vilvoorde which has been the subject of contention for a long time, almost since the start of the great Belgian experiment in federalism. Di Rupo turned up the drama meter and basically told everyone the world would come to an end today if they did not make some agreement about the BHV and the burgomasters of the three Flemish municipalities around Brussels with language facilities, which they have. So, some progress is made on the BHV which has been argued about for 48 years since it was created in 1963. But we know that this does not solve the problem of Belgium having no government. This push to solve the BHV problem was started by the King who has been frustrated watching the conditions for the people growing worse in the face of the economic crisis but with the political deadlock preventing taking new action to deal with the problems. The King hoped getting the BHV problem out of the way would make the negotiators able to deal with the budget and social economic issues that are greatly needed.