An Increased Stature

(See the key for the parties at the bottom of this post)

According to the latest Dutch political poll, Geert Wilders’ party has gained an additional five virtual seats in the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of the Dutch parliament. If the election were held today, the Party for Freedom (Partij voor de Vrijheid, PVV) would receive 26% of the vote and win 39 seats (out of 150) in the legislature.

As you can see from the above graph, this puts Mr. Wilders head and shoulders above all his possible competitors, including the two parties (VVD and PvdA) that make up the current governing coalition.

Which dovetails nicely with a little graphics project I’ve been working on recently…

As you all know, Geert Wilders is once again facing a “hate speech” trial (his third) before a court in the Netherlands. During the previous trial I made the following composite image of Mr. Wilders as Galileo facing the Inquisition:

I have always been dissatisfied with this image, due to the diminutive stature of the main character. Galileo was a much shorter fellow than Geert Wilders. If you have ever met Mr. Wilders, you know how immensely tall he is. He usually towers over everyone else in the room.

However, increasing the height of Geert-as-Galileo was no simple task. It takes time and finesse to lengthen his torso without unacceptably distorting the figure or interfering with the background.

I worked on it for a while, and this is the result:

To my eye, the new figure in this image accurately reflects Geert Wilders’ real height, and evokes his true stature relative to his adversaries, the pygmies of the New Inquisition in the Hague.

Key to the parties:

VVD   People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy
    Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie
PvdA   Labour Party
    Partij van de Arbeid
    Social democrats
PVV   Party for Freedom
    Partij voor de Vrijheid
    Classical liberal, Islam-critical
SP   Socialist Party
    Socialistische Partij
    Left-wing populists, former Maoists, to the left of communists
CDA   Christian Democratic Appeal
    Christen-Democratisch Appèl
    Christian democrats, center-right
D66   Democrats 66
    Politieke Partij Democraten 66
    Centrist social liberals
CU   ChristianUnion
    Christian Democrats, left-wing, only “conservative” in being ostensibly religious
GL   GreenLeft
    Environmentalism plus hard left
SGP   Reformed Political Party
    Staatkundig Gereformeerde Partij
    Christian right, advocates a Christian theocracy
PvdD   Party for Animals
    Partij voor de Dieren
    Animal rights
50+   50PLUS
    Pensioners’ party

17 thoughts on “An Increased Stature

  1. I love the “new” Geert Wilders.

    I also like more than I can say the serendipitous fact that although you can’t paint landscapes any more you can still do images. A poor replacement, I know, but to my mind it is the Karma Dude taking away and then relenting enough to give back part of your gift, just enough to get by.

    Every time I contemplate that only a few short years ago the eventual diagnosis for your condition was blindness it feels – to me, at least – as though you barely escaped what would have been (for you particularly) a horrific fate.

    That was my unvoiced prayer at Thanksgiving…

  2. Very nicely done. As long as you’ve photoshopped the image, why not place an image of Satan sitting on the table against the wall in the background, hand on chin thoughtfully contemplating the proceedings. After all, these liberalized pygmies consider Satan an ok fellow; a misunderstood revolutionary in his time and not evil incarnate.

    • Ah, but to think of an idea like that (and visualize it) is not the same as realizing it. To photoshop something of that nature would be a considerable task, with a lot of digital painting involved. Possible, but not worth the many hours it would take, not from my point of view.

  3. Very true Baron. Geert Wilders is a giant in this age or any other. What a courageous man Wilders is, God Bless him. Nice job on the image manipulation, you have a fine touch (up)!

  4. Would PVV ever be able to get a majority coalition with just 39 seats? How effectively would it ever be able to work its will? Seems to me there’s still a very long road ahead.

    • Well, they’d be 36 seats short.

      PVV+VVD+CDA and maybe some minor party if necessary?

      You could imagine a situation where Wilders horse-trades getting his way on the immigration file (the most important thing going for the Netherlands right now, probably) against the others getting to rule in other respects. If, secretly, they’ve come around on the immigration issue, they could then hide behind “Wilders made us do it”.

    • Any ruling coalition is going to ignore a majority PVV at their peril, they are now playing a political Russian roulette.

      Hence the dire need to get GW off the streets

  5. I think Wilders to achieve a coalition in Parliament will need it to convert the other left parties in something other than the left. Although it is not exactly the party not progressive, however, it is a fact that he would need at least do this.

  6. Great job Baron..Glad you did well in the fundraiser..You and Dymphna truly deserve each and every (penny) contribution you guys get..

  7. BTW, you did an *amazing* photo-edit job. It looks *really* good.

    If there’s a way to make Wilders aware of it, I’m sure he’d appreciate it.

  8. I would like to remind everyone to this excellent article on GoV recently.
    The Netherlands are ruled not by politicians or even royalty but by about 200 powerful industrial families.

    Lets jump back to 2002
    Wilders’ predecessor was a rather flamboyant politician by the name of Pim Fortuyn.
    His political views were pretty much the same as Wilders’ views today.
    According to the polls Pim was set to win the elections by a landslide.
    Nine days before the elections he was murdered with a gunshot in the head by a leftwing nutjob by the name of Volkert van der Graaf. Who served a minimal sentence.

    As Wilders’ star rises what will those 200 powerful families do?
    Will they conclude “Wilders is bad for business” and “he has to go”?
    Will they pull off another “Volkert”?

  9. Baron, what an amazing job there. I am truly hopeful Geert can save his underserving country from the deadly illness of PC.

    I wish I could remember what year it was that I stumbled on your website the first time (and it didn’t look like this one) where you described a walk in the park in some place that may have been Virginia. . . it’s been many years and I don’t remember how you caught my attention and I bookmarked you.

    These days, you are part, important part, of my morning rounds, as I check to see if the world is still “out there.” God bless you and Dymphna for your work!

    • I will never forget when I discovered GoV. It was in the comments section of an article at the Washington Post covering the massacre of the writers and cartoonists (cartoonists!) at Charlie Hebdo in early January 2015. I saw the log-on handle and found the independent site via Internet search and, voici, me je suis ici.

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