Dutch politicians’ English still good for a laugh


The English of Dutch politicians has always made for good laughing stock. In 2013 and in a globalised world, any politician needs to be able to speak decent English to be understood, and failing that, they should really have what they are going to say checked by someone who knows the language, as the media will be ready to pounce on them if they mess up.

Dunglish classics include former Dutch Prime Minister Joop den Uyl saying ‘We are a nation of undertakers’ and former leader of the Dutch liberal party, Frits Bolkestein, calling economic prospects ‘golden showers’.

While in Congo yesterday Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Lilianne Ploumen said ‘There is no such thing as a Dutch product in terms of quality’, although she meant to say ‘There is nothing like a Dutch product.’ It’s one thing to say something wrong, but it’s a real job to actually say the opposite. Language training, anyone?

And yes, politicians from around the world surely screw up as well before y’all go off in the comments.

Here’s a funny Dunglish advert that shows you what Dunglish sounds like.

(Link: www.volkskrant.nl)

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