Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

Progress in curtailing the antisocial super-rich

Last week, three economic earthquakes left tremors around the globe

In turbo-speed, humanity is racing toward the abyss of climate extinction.

Strangely, the richest of the richest, well-informed and powerful, often lead the pack in this doom scenario. These smart and wealthy people seem to prefer to live in unrestrained luxury and then have humans jointly die out (final fairness) above trying to survive as species with a bit less money.

The larger the richest companies, the larger the scale on which we need to organize to curve their irresponsible powers. But the first thing we need to learn is: profitable doesn’t mean good and rich doesn’t mean successful.

Three news items of last week show things finally slowly start changing.

Oil Company Curtailed on Pollution

A judge in the Netherlands has just ordered oil giant Shell to slash its greenhouse gas emissions in a landmark victory for climate activists with implications for energy firms worldwide. Carbon emissions should be about halved in a decade based on the 2015 Paris climate accords.

Shell had argued that the Paris Accords are not binding and that it does enough voluntarily. But the judge ruled that the Anglo-Dutch multinational giant’s climate policy is “not concrete and is full of reservations.” Shell’s emissions were “greater than those of many countries” and the resulting climate change effects pose “serious risk to human rights, such as the right to life and an undisturbed family life,” the judge said. It causes an “enormous CO2 emission,” which it must curtail “at once.”

Unsurprisingly, Shell will appeal having to help save the planet. Big Oil has a long history of polluting nature. Why would it improve on that record?

Climate activists rejoiced but it ain’t over till Fat Oil sings a different tune.

But, also the Dutch State is far away still from a rational climate policy.

Internationally Taxing the Rich

The Ministers of Finance of the seven richest countries just agreed to a global minimum corporate tax rate from now of 15%. AFP said euphemistically, it targets tech giants and other multinationals allegedly ‘not paying enough.’ Rather, it aims at those who don’t pay a dime.

This will require them to pay tax in the countries where they made the money (low-wage former colonies), and not just (if at all) in the states of origin or the tax havens where they have their headquarters.

Taxing the richest 15% rate should only be the first step.

Yet, for instance, the Dutch economy is greatly helped by the tax haven it created (see below). Don’t expect Big Money to take this sitting down. Greed got them there and overnight, it won’t turn into magnanimity.

Dutch Hand-out to the Rich Stopped

Across the Channel, the government of Europe’s prime tax haven, the Netherlands, just go called to order by the European Commission.

It had planned a couple of billion euro handout per year for some large boys (Shell, Unilever, AkzoNobel, and Philips first), just to let them know that the Netherlands loves them. But, the reverse Robin Hood plan died in Parliament, after an ugly fight. Never mind, double the amount would be gifted anyway, as a tax break for job creation. That started January first, 2021. Yet, it just had to quietly cancel it retroactively because now, the European Commission deemed it a state subsidy, so, unfair competition.

But the Dutch demissionary government still plans on this gift to the rich, maybe via lowering employers’ costs. It’s vital to keep watching it.

Activist victories encourage. Yet, only persistence will ensure a change.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, previously a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. None of his content is generated by the new bore on the block, AI. * As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. Or not at all because he doesn't claim G^d talks to him. He gives him good ideas—that's all. MM doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and educations contribute to his visions. * This year, he will prioritize getting his unpublished books published rather than just blog posts. Next year, he hopes to focus on activism against human extinction. To find less-recent posts on a subject XXX among his over 2000 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe too, here: or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. However, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people when don't deserve that. (Yet, we all make honest mistakes, which is just fine and does not justify losing support.) He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight reality), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * Chronologically, his most influential teachers are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. This short list doesn't mean to disrespect others who taught him a lot or a little. One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. When he can, he loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. Read his blog on how he attempts to bridge any tensions between those ideas or fields. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to his parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too, and decades more to admit to being a genius. But his humility was his to keep. And so was his honesty. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. He hopes to bring new things and not just preach to the choir. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, powerful therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. * His newest books you may find here:
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