PVV banned on number plates
Democracy is often thought of as being a system for polite mob rule. That is to say, a thing is decided because more people vote for it. I believe that is what is often called, ‘three foxes and a chicken voting on what is for dinner’.
Democracy more properly is a system of governance with specific rules and institutions that guarantee freedom for the people from government. An example, is a non partisan military. It is crucial for a democracy that the military not work for a specific party within a nation. This is why Chavez making his ‘Red Shirts’ or ‘Chavistas’ an official branch of the military is a direct move away from democracy.
In that spirit, the government of the Netherlands has made it illegal for people to have the letters “PVV” on a licence plate, the letters representing the Dutch Freedom Party, or the party of Geert Wilders.
The logic is, that the letters KKK are illegal as are NSB (the Dutch World War II pro Nazi party) and so on, and the government effectively now associates Wilder’s PVV with these groups.
This new law establishes two things. 1. a move away from the most basic principles of democracy in Holland by using an institution of the state to discriminate against a legal political party, and 2. sets a stunning example of why laws banning speech should not exist at all because the question will not be ‘IF’ any law limiting speech will be abused but when, by whom, and to what purpose.
Laws banning Nazi or KKK licence plates clearly have now been used to protect a ruling party against a truly liberal and democratic one as they grow larger in the polls. This is no small thing. But it is an excellent example of why no law should exist that makes it illegal to say or write a thing in public.
PVV, the short form of the name of the anti-Islam party Partij voor de Vrijheid, has been added to the list of banned abbreviations for new car number plates, the AD reports on Friday.
PVV joins NSB (the Dutch World War II pro Nazi party), KKK (Ku Klux Klan) and TBS (psychiatric prison) on a short list of banned words, the AD says.
PVV does not appear on the list on the vehicle licensing authority website.
The authority says the new Dutch number plate system, two numbers followed by three letters and one number, has opened up the way for ’socially unacceptable’ words.
According to the paper, the authority has banned PVV because it could be insulting or encourage violence.
PVV leader Geert Wilders has asked the transport minister for an explanation.