Vincent Korbee | The Political Morality Surrounding the Dutch Child Benefits Scandal – The Applicability of Political Hypocrisy and Dirty Hands

Samenvatting

The child benefits scandal was a public affair that took place in the Netherlands between 2004-2019 in which approximately 26.000 parents were unjustly labelled as fraudsters. The victimized parents had made relatively small mistakes in their administration and, consequently, had to pay back the full amount of childcare allowance – a compensation granted by the tax authorities for utilizing childcare – due to a tough approach of the government to combat fraud. After many years of trying to knock on the government’s door, the scandal finally became public and after numerous debates and political turmoil, the parents were promised compensation.

This paper examines to what extent the concepts of political hypocrisy and dirty hands are applicable to the Dutch child benefits scandal. This will be done by examining the final report of the parliamentary interrogation committee on the scandal, specifically going over the public interrogation of prime minister Mark Rutte.


Vincent Korbee (2002) studeert geschiedenis en filosofie aan de Erasmus Universiteit in Rotterdam. Hij heeft een enorme passie voor het bestuderen van ideeën uit het heden en verleden en hoe deze toegepast kunnen worden in ons dagelijks leven. Naast zijn studie werkt hij als debattrainer en ben is hij actief in de gemeentelijke politiek met zijn partij, Jong Nissewaard.

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