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Now I understand why the government wanted us to support the EU constitution. That 500 pages long document is probably the only thing that could have kept them from regressing into atavistic behaviour such as displayed in the current row between Belgium and the Netherlands.
Mr. Karel De Gucht, the Belgian secretary of foreign affairs, yesterday was quoted in the equally Belgian newspaper 'Het Laatste Nieuws' as having said that Mr. Balkenende waged a terrible 'YES' campaign (true), that Mr. Balkenende looks like Harry Potter (wrong, and an insult to Harry Potter - just ask yourself, who do you consider 'Most likely to be invited by Michael Jackson'?), that Mr. Balkenende has no charm (very true), that Mr. Balkenende is a really boring middle class person (only too true - note: creative translations of 'stijfburgerlijk' are welcome in the comments section), and that he would have done better when there had been a plebiscite in Belgium (completely apocryphal, especially since the 'NO' voters are even on the rise in Luxembourg, which is a very rich and very pro-EU country).
De Gucht first tried to weasel his way out of the ensuing bickering by denying he'd said anything of the kind. However, since Mr. De Gucht is equally well known for making controversial statements as well as his habit of trying to cop out afterwards, the journalist who interviewed him had been smart enough to record the conversation.