Will Jan-Peter Balkenende pull a Jim Hacker?

The race for the presidency of Europe is on, so it seems. There are some serious candidates to become the first president of Europe and there is Dutch prime minister Jan-Peter Balkenende. Nobody in their right mind could think this silly Harry Potter look-alike who never in his life did anything noteworthy whatsoever stands a chance.

I am reminded of an episode of ‘Yes Minister’ or ‘Yes Prime Minister’, however. It’s called ‘Party Games’ and it’s a special episode linking ‘Yes Minister’ to ‘Yes Prime Minister’ by way of getting Jim Hacker appointed to the prime ministerial job. Not for lack of a better candidate, but for want of a worse one, so to speak. The powers that be, or that want to be, don’t need a good Prime Minister in there, they need someone who possesses:

the following qualities: he must be malleable, flexible, likeable, have no firm opinions, no bright ideas, not be intellectually committed, and be without the strength of purpose to change anything. Above all, he must be someone whom we know can be professionally guided [manipulated – Ed.], and who is willing to leave the business of government in the hands of the experts.
(The Complete Yes Prime Minister, page 29)

This obviously fits Jim Hacker to a T and in the current European situation Mr Balkenende would do, provided nobody really cares about the being likeable. There is a slight difference: whereas Mr Hacker does something with a sausage that gets him in, Mr Balkenende’s only real accomplishment has been with the Dutch delicacy called “kroketten” and that was a long time ago.

If against all odds Mr Balkenende gets the job, or is even seriously considered, you might say he’s pulled a Jim Hacker. I don’t think he will.

4-10-2009 12.51 | Door: Fish Finger P. (with a P that stands for Plastered) | Categorie: Bewindslieden, Europese politiek

Er zijn 2 reacties op “Will Jan-Peter Balkenende pull a Jim Hacker?”

  1. […] ook niet. Die zullen het overigens wel spijtig vinden dat ze Jeepee Kroket nu kwijtraken, want zo’n sullige baas krijgen ze nooit weer. Misschien moeten ze onder de volgende premier wel aan het werk, zelfs. […]

  2. […] heeft hij zichzelf volslagen belachelijk gemaakt met zijn poging president van Europa te worden zonder kandidaat te zijn, maar ook in de zaak Kroes heeft hij op droevige wijze bakzeil moeten halen. En dat terwijl wij van […]


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