Story here. I thought it would be interesting to bring up, considering Belgium went 541 days with out a proper government after failing to form one after the elections in June 2007. Attempts to negotiate for a new government was fruitless, and we even had a thread here from those many years ago. The problem invited discussion on the 'divisions' in Belgian society, the Walloon/Francophone and Flemish communities more specifically.
During this period of wrangling the Belgium federal government was under a caretaker government, and elections/ activities continued in the regional governments of the Walloon and Flemish regions.. I find it interesting that it went this long with out an agreement (again, 541 days) with out some drastic political explosion, especially in light of the ongoing economic crisis in Europe and the world.
Though the external pressure could not be ignored- the Eurozone crisis in particular with regards to Belgium, with a functioning government needed to place confidence in investors, businesses, etc. More over the next election cycle is set for 2014, which means this government will be a short one and minds will be turned to campaigning by the end of the next year.
I'm not sure what else to say. Just found this story interesting is all.
Voice of joy and sunshine
26th May 2003
I've said, many times, that the high rate of iteration achieved by a dominant executive doesn't really serve the interests of a country's citizenship due to the relatively low rate of iteration when it comes to serious social problems that such an executive is proposed to address. The mismatch producing inherent instabilities and abuses of power. That Belgium has done just fine without one seems like rather massive supporting evidence.... Not conclusive in any sense, especially of the second bit that is sort of a secondary thing all by itself, but still.
(Edit: If it doesn't really address the social problems it's generally justified in terms of then you should expect to see that countries that don't have a dominant executive sworn in continue to function reasonably enough.)
Wanna go Double Dutch?
9th December 2003
Luckily (or unfortunately) for Belgium, it has quite a few lower level goverments/authorities. Thus it could keep on running while most other countries wouldn't be able to run without a national goverment for so long. Clearly, reforms are needed. Though this is exactly the one thing that devides the north (Flanders) and south (Wallonia). The southern french speaking part has been finacially depended and the richer, dutch speaking, north. Then there is the issue with the language (the french "taking over") around Brussels. The only solution would be to make the south as efficient and developed as the north. After which reform should be a lot more easy as no party should fear losing a large chunk of (financial) support.
The language barrier.. I don't think that can be solved. Whatever the solution, one side will not be amused. Unless you'd enforce the "language border" by force, thus ensuring that in all Flamish districts only Dutch is spoken (in public offices, townhalls and other things that are linked to the authorities or state).