The manager of a drugstore in Etten-Leur, Noord-Brabant was caught selling a pallet of baby formula out the back of the shop before the product hit the shelves. However, this apparently happens often around the country, as managers receive their bonuses based on their turnover rather than their margins. If they are always able to sell their pallets of formula in one go, it’s no surprise some of them will move product this way. Almost everyone in the Netherlands has noticed that baby formula can only be bought one or two tins at a time due to a constant shortage.
The media tends to blame the Chinese who buy up baby formula, but that’s only half the picture. The shortage is not caused by individual Chinese buying up units or even a pallet out the back, but mainly by Dutch producers of formula who can sell it at three times the Dutch price on Chinese websites where only a select handful of foreign companies are allowed to do business. According to the Telegraaf in 2013, Chinese resellers can make millions selling Dutch baby formula to the Chinese whether it comes directly from Dutch companies or Chinese selling it themselves. I’ve read that ambitious traders who buy pallets get the product into China through Hong Kong, even a few tins at a time if need be.
Sure, the Chinese can buy domestic formula, but since the scandals of 2008, expecting parents would rather buy quality foreign products, and big European companies know this all too well.
The Chinese cosmetics company Perfect has recently sponsored 4,500 of its employees to vacation in the Netherlands, making it the biggest group visit to the country ever, according to Dutch media.
Their entire visit has brought in close to 8 million euro. The Chinese visited places such as the Hoge Veluwe National Park, Roermond outlet centre, the congress centre in Utrecht, and the Mauritshuis museum in The Hague, while having to stay in different cities: Amsterdam, The Hague, Delft, Rotterdam, and Utrecht.
Many of them were spotted enjoying Chinese food the most, which could be the typical Chinese-Indonesian food the Dutch usually serve. The group will most probably help attract even more Chinese visitors to the Netherlands with their word of mouth advertising.
Saying sorry profusely and ‘distancing oneself from the incident’ is purely being done not to get sued. And suing does not happen that often, but this time the guy from Arnhem who was refused an internship for being black went straight to the police and filed a complaint.
An electronics company in Arnhem refused a candidate based on his skin colour and sadly, the internal e-mail in which this was done was sent to the candidate by mistake.
“I had a look, it’s nothing. First of all he’s dark-coloured (nigger). And he has little experience with computers etc. on his resume.”
The nigger part is in the e-mail as such, and ‘it’s nothing’ means ‘it won’t work out’. The employee that sent the mail by mistake never would have apologised had they not been caught. So basically, they really are racist and the candidate has a point.
A run of racist and discriminatory remarks have plagued the Netherlands as of late, and co-blogger Branko has been writing them up on another blog, calling it ‘The coming out of the racists’.
This time a Chinese immigrant speaking better English than the Dutch jury was poked fun at purely because of his ethnicity. Xiao Wang is asked his name before singing an opera aria by Verdi and once he says his name, a woman on the jury answer’s “no matter”, reassuring him that his Chinese is not a problem. The crowd sounds shocked, but laughs. A little later, Gordon, the same pop singer we mentioned earlier this week , asks Wang, “what are you going to sing? Number 29 with rice?”, obviously referring to the fact that many Chinese run take away restaurants in the Netherlands. After Wang’s performance which was surprisingly good, Gordon says “that was the best Chinese I’ve had in weeks”. I stopped watching after that.
This video has decent English subtitles, which will have you facepalming in no time:
A 52-year-old female Chinese restaurant owner and four other suspects are being prosecuted on human trafficking charges for having exploited a Chinese chef forced to work in restaurants in Amsterdam and Arnhem.
“The victim was intimidated and had to work under miserable conditions. He was not allowed to visit a doctor and had to sleep in a cage in an Amsterdam restaurant under video surveillance.” He also worked for long hours for almost no pay, and his bank account was plundered.
Many human trafficking victims in the Netherlands are women brought to work in the sex industry, but a broader type of exploitation is apparently on the rise.
Filed under: Music,Weird by Orangemaster @ 12:17 pm
Dutch carnival songs are usually catchy, funny, tacky, use bad electronic keyboards and dumbed down enough so that everybody can sing along. After a lot of beer and in the right mood, it can work. However, the past few years have produced songs of a xenophobic and dare I say ‘racist’ or culturally ignorant nature.
In 2007 happy hardcore hit ‘Een bussie vol met Polen’ (‘A bus full of Poles’, a cover of ‘Een bossie rooie rozen’ (‘A bunch of red roses’), set to the tune of Edith Piaf’s ‘La vie en rose’) by Vlemmix & Roos was controversial, but this year a ‘racist’ carnival song about the Chinese community by duo Anita and Ed has taken first place in bad taste.
Dutch Chinese author Lulu Wang (who was probably asked to politely balance out the article, let’s be honest) has no qualms about lyrics like “A Chinese cannot see what’s above or below, in fact, he sees everything through a slit” and everybody wearing traditional pointy straw hats and black braids in the video. She argues that “the song reflects Dutch feelings of impotence toward the Chinese in the Netherlands, who are doing increasingly well.” I guess that’s one way to see things, and that last part is true, statistically speaking. I cannot imagine everyone shares her view, Chinese or not.
What if the song were about Moroccans or Turks? Or Antilleans? Or… Muslims? Think about it while watching Een bussie vol met Polen, paying hommage to the hard working Poles trying to build a life in the Netherlands doing jobs the Dutch won’t do.