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Old 08-21-2006, 02:07 PM
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Analysis of Máxima

In the academic weekly Intermediair, there was a long article on Princess Máxima, titled: Máxima, the born Queen. It is quite a long article, with some parts of lesser interest (Dutch internal politics) but here is a summarized translation. Enjoy the reading!


On a dark evening in the autumn of 2005, the marechaussees at the gates of the royal domain De Horsten (The Eyries) halt a car at the beginning of the alley leading to the princely villa De Eikenhorst (The Eyrie in the Oakwoods). When the marechaussees approach the black car, a nervous giggling sounds. Cigarettes smoke crawls upwards along the opened window next to the driver. To their amazement the marechaussees see tonight’s visit in one car: Femke Halsema (fraction leader in the Second Chamber), her colleague Naïma Azough, Maarten van der Meer (an Amsterdam councillor) and Katelijne Buitenweg (member of the European Parliament). These politicians are all members of the Groen-Links (Green-Left) party and are publicly convinced republicans. They are invited for diner with the Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima. Also delegations from other parties have regularly been invited to villa De Eikenhorst, for diners which do not rarely last until past midnight. The menu is partly Argentinean, partly Dutch, and with vegetables from the own estate.



One of the visitors tells: 'They wanted to know our opinions about a number of political themes. I was amazed that they expressed their own opinions so open and clear. It became totally lively when the couple themselves were in mutual disagreement on certain topics. They felt very easy about it.' An alderman from a large city finds it 'extremely clever' that the princely couple organizes these private evenings with prominent politicians. 'While I’m actually republican, I became a fan that evening. They are a blessing for the Netherlands thanks to their openness and their communicative skills.'

Máxima Zorreguieta came, saw and conquered. All the upheaval about her marriage with the Prince of Orange became dumbstruck after her overwhelming entrance during the princely engagement on 30 March 2001. On that moment the whole of the Netherlands wanted to engage with her, certainly since she has so clearly taken distance from the Videla-regime. Perhaps more surprising yet, is that she effortlessly remained upright since then.
[…]



Princess Máxima is by far the most popular member of the Royal House. 'It is her appearance, her flair, her joie de vivre, her exuberance, her cosmopolitanism. All are characteristics which the royal Court did not own in too large extents', says a royalty watcher. 'Queen Beatrix and Prince Willem-Alexander never seek real contact with the public. Princess Máxima tries to have a real conversation with you, including non-verbal communication.' Royalty-reporter Marc van der Linden of ‘Weekend Magazine’ endorses that Princess Máxima knows how to reach the people: 'She makes jokes, is not fearful to make physical contact or to show her emotions. I remember that she was very emotional during the awarding of the Geuzenpenning (Medaille des Gueux) to the mother of Ingrid Betancourt, the kidnapped Colombian candidate for president.’ But The Queen also shows some more of her emotions, finds Marc van der Linden. ‘I think that is Máxima’s influence.’
[….]



The nature talent is an asset for the Royal House. There is quite an unanimous opinion in that. Máxima felt out of Heaven as the rescueing angel, when Queen Beatrix’ long time so praised no-nonsense style suddenly no longer did fit so well in the mood of changing times. 'Princess Máxima lets the monarchy radiate again’ says Peter Rehwinkel, mayor of Naarden and before that spokesman for constitutional law for the Labour Party in the Second Chamber. 'She lays other accents than The Queen. Of course that lies also at her age and origin, and at the abundance that she radiates. I think I must state explicitly that Princess Máxima’s actions are no break with the trend or with the preceding and that she is also not intending that at all.' Queen Beatrix certainly is one of Princess Máxima’s example figures, thinks Peter Rehwinkel. ‘Princess Máxima may come over quite exuberantly but, like The Queen, she leaves nothing to the coincidence. For the last rehearsal of her marriage, she brought a vertically striped long curtain with her, so that she could exactly see and exercise the effects of her bridal train. A directly involved person tells: ‘She directed the bridesmaids so precisely. In Spanish indeed. But it was clear: this lady knew exactly what she wanted and knows how to impose her wishes. Considerably more than her spouse.’


(continued in next post)
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Old 08-21-2006, 02:13 PM
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(continuation from first post)

It is often indicated and easily to conclude: Princess Máxima outshines the Prince of Orange. Everywhere she comes the thronefollower fades away in her shadow.
[….]

But the Prince of Orange is a good-natured man, and they seems still to be very much in love with each other. 'Princess Máxima knows how to deal with all the attention quite nicely, in such a way that it is not irritating for the Prince to stand in her shadow, says an insider of the royal Court. ‘They allow each other the attention' stated one of the photographers making pictures at the opening of an exhibition in the Amsterdam Historical Museum: ‘Prince Charles was quite jealous on Diana. Prince Willem-Alexander feels no jealousy on Máxima.' The marriage is a golden match: she is a woman of the world but obtained royal class. In exchange for that he obtained sex-appeal, and with him the Royal House’.

'Prince Willem-Alexander has grown thanks to his marriage with Máxima', says Marc van der Linden. 'More and more you hear, also at the Rijksvoorlichtingsdienst (Government Information Agency): "The Prince wants this” or "No, the Prince does not want it". He has become more confident. No longer he feels the prying eyes of his all-and-everything controlling mother. Now they are a good operating two-unity at De Eikenhorst’.




[Then a long piece about the politically sensitive ‘Commission Máxima’, officially it was called the Commission PAVEM (Participation of Women from Ethnic Minority Groups) which attracted huge attention thanks to its prominent royal member but also stirred controversy with bold statements on integration and immigration. A sensitive topic in the Netherlands.]

At the royal Court man sighed out of relief that the Commission was just temporary. One source: ‘Man was sure at the royal Court: this no longer and not again.’ After all the Royal House must be an unifying factor, standing above the parties as much as possible. The wish for the continuation of the commission (PAVEM 2) was tackled. With Princess Máxima, the Royal House has gold in its hands. But the Royal House has no control over the context of that gold, no matter how hard it tries. What does that mean for Princess Máxima’s future?




'In Argentina still girls are born with the knowledge that they once wants to marry a rich or important man’, says Marc van der Linden, ‘who also have that ambition because they want to mean something in the world. And Princess Máxima is doing that now. In principle the doors of the White House will open for her, if she wants. You must find that also nicely.’ Máxima Zorreguieta did not marry the Prince of Orange by chance, is what Marc van der Linden wants to say. She wants to propose and to do something. And she cán do something: see her activities on micro-credits. She also enjoys the attention, so state the photographers who follow her. But is she allowed to enjoy all this?





Princess Máxima is skilfull enough to enforce chances and opportunities. Even when this would fail, it is unthinkable that she would succeed her father-in-law, the late Prince Claus. Whose tragedy lies in a testifying sentence showing his superior understated feel for irony (spoken at the opening of the new headquarters of ABN AMRO-Bank in Amsterdam): ‘Ladies and gentlemen, now I want to go to my core business: the cutting of a ribbon.'
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Old 08-21-2006, 02:22 PM
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Thank you for the interesting article, Henri M. Maxima always seemed very smart and capable to me (looking at her past financial position, as well as her interviews and conduct since then). My thoughts about WA's intellect were not quite as high, quite frankly. But this article makes the pair seem more like intellectual equals, as well as open to intellectual discussions with others who (generally) function at a high level. Interestintg insight into these 2 on a personal level.

I admire their communication skills, openness for taking the initiative in opening the dialogue with influential decision-makers. Royalty have unique access to politicans but I don't usually hear them using that position in such a constructive way. As people interested in the present and future Netherlands, it's nice to hear they get around a dinner table and talk about the issues.
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Old 08-21-2006, 04:25 PM
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Thank you very much Henri M Its nice for us who do not understand dutch to read something deeper than hello and exaptica articles, much appreaciated. Maxima certainly is an asset to her spouse
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Old 08-21-2006, 04:58 PM
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A very interesting article! Maxima would make a wonderful queen one day. She seems to have all the assets.
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Old 08-21-2006, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Kelly
A very interesting article! Maxima would make a wonderful queen one day. She seems to have all the assets.
I agree. Thank you so much for posting that article, Henri. I think Maxima has a unique set of talents -- both intellectual and social smarts, and a generous heart -- and that should take her a long way. I enjoy following her and will continue to and articles such as this are very helpful toward rounding out my understanding of who she/they is/are. Thanks again.
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Old 08-21-2006, 05:58 PM
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Thank you for translating the article, Henri!
I remember reading it several months ago, but I totally forgot about it. It's a nice article. I think it's great that W-A and Maxima are meeting in an informal way with politicians of their own age, btw. They just have to work together in next few years, so dining with them is a smart move, imo.
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Old 08-21-2006, 06:15 PM
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It's nice to see Maxima portrayed as a woman of the world who uses her role within the Royal Family to her family's best advantage. She'll make a wonderful example for her daughters to follow. Thank you for the translation! We in America rarely hear anything about royalty outside of the BRF, unless there's some scandal or major event.
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Old 08-21-2006, 08:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by janos614
It's nice to see Maxima portrayed as a woman of the world who uses her role within the Royal Family to her family's best advantage. She'll make a wonderful example for her daughters to follow. Thank you for the translation! We in America rarely hear anything about royalty outside of the BRF, unless there's some scandal or major event.

This is very true. I was really suprised/confused when I read the rumour that Q Beatrix thought Maxima "wasn't strong enough" to marry into the Royal House because she's always appeared to be quite the opposite!
I think she's very savy and knows exactly whats she's doing.
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Old 08-21-2006, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by SASSY
This is very true. I was really suprised/confused when I read the rumour that Q Beatrix thought Maxima "wasn't strong enough" to marry into the Royal House because she's always appeared to be quite the opposite!
I think she's very savy and knows exactly whats she's doing.
It took me awhile to figure her out, but she doesn't strike me as a golddigger. I think she is one of the most genuine crown princesses out there- she has far more patience for the job than I would, that's for sure. I doubt she could smile that widely when greeting the public unless she means it, and if she doesn't, she's an excellent actress. But she really looks genuinely pleased to be wherever she is. And yes, the tradeoff to having to smile so much is becoming queen someday, but I think a CP has to put up with too much in the process to not want to be there unless she's in love.
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Old 08-21-2006, 10:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ap3
I admire their communication skills, openness for taking the initiative in opening the dialogue with influential decision-makers.
I admire their ability to listen to the best of PR strategists!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ap3
Royalty have unique access to politicans but I don't usually hear them using that position in such a constructive way.
Or, in such a cleverly planned and orchestrated and strategized way. This is a clever PR trick they use to influence exactly those politicians who don't really warm for the concept of the monarchy.

If Maxima realized anything it probably would be that Alexander on his own isnt exactly the most inspiring future monarchs, not to the person on the street, that is. That he needs all the plotting this article points out they do.
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Old 08-21-2006, 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by janos614
It took me awhile to figure her out, but she doesn't strike me as a golddigger. I think she is one of the most genuine crown princesses out there
You sure you read the article?
Maxima there is again confirmed as someone who knows <exactly> what she wants. Think she would have been as charmed by Willem Alexander's blond eighties hairdo if he'd been employed as a plummer, bar a trust fund and a throne? Think again.
This is the kind of girl, and the article underlines this, who was <brought up> with the (unspoken, but nevertheless very present) goal of marrying someone who could add to their prestige and bank account. I used to live and work in New York, and believe me, there are thousands of Maxima's in New York trying to get into the best of circles in order to find the best possible (read: wealthiest) husband.
We're talking about a woman here who so overshadowed her poor groom at her wedding that it is hard to remember he was even there.

And those dinners...they want and take the opportunity to influence, that's all. While I adore Queen Beatrix and quite like Laurentien and Constantijn, I am a bit sceptical about Willem Alexander and Maxima, because she strikes me as someone more like Evita than, say, Marilene. Evita bettered herself and her position and gained influence through marrying a powerful husband, in a cooly steely focused way. I see Maxima in not much of a different light, sorry folks who are choosing to drink the koolaid on this woman, I just see her as I've come across so many others of her sort when in New York.
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Old 08-21-2006, 10:32 PM
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Henri, that is one very interesting article you posted. Thanks for the translation, that was a lot of work for you to do for us so we could read it.
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Old 08-21-2006, 10:32 PM
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That's why I mentioned the possibility in a previous post that she might be a very good actress, because she has me pretty much taken in. But seriously, that article was the first that I'd seen that mentions her as someone who is driven enough to get what she wants, so I guess I have somebackground reading to do.
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Old 08-21-2006, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by janos614
That's why I mentioned the possibility in a previous post that she might be a very good actress, because she has me pretty much taken in. But seriously, that article was the first that I'd seen that mentions her as someone who is driven enough to get what she wants, so I guess I have somebackground reading to do.
But you know what, whatever her motives for marrying Alexandre, that doesn't mean she can't enjoy and be good at her current duties, quite the contrary. If becoming a princess was what she set out to be, that probably was because she was convinced it was the right job for her! Which on many many accounts, it is, at times I feel she is genuine, also at times I feel she's disingeneous, which isn't necessarily bad.
It's just that I never warmed up to her because of the interview before her marriage, in which she announced that the findings of a commission, (which were that her father <had> to have had knowledge of the disappearance of a number of people during the Videla regime he was an agricultural minister at) was "just an opinion." From a PR perspective, a disastrous thing to say, yet because Maxima is goodlooking and charming, the Dutch didn't seem to mind to get a blatant social climber as a queen, but it made me quite uncomfortable. Again, I think M. does a good job as a princess, but I also do think she very focusedly set out to get to this position with all means possible.
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Old 08-21-2006, 11:57 PM
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Originally Posted by princess olga
You sure you read the article?
Maxima there is again confirmed as someone who knows <exactly> what she wants. Think she would have been as charmed by Willem Alexander's blond eighties hairdo if he'd been employed as a plummer, bar a trust fund and a throne? Think again.
This is the kind of girl, and the article underlines this, who was <brought up> with the (unspoken, but nevertheless very present) goal of marrying someone who could add to their prestige and bank account. I used to live and work in New York, and believe me, there are thousands of Maxima's in New York trying to get into the best of circles in order to find the best possible (read: wealthiest) husband.
We're talking about a woman here who so overshadowed her poor groom at her wedding that it is hard to remember he was even there.
I agree with you. I have to admit that I do not care for her either. I think its because she acts so boisterous (sp?), almost like a bull in a china shop. She is supposed to be a Queen, not a nightclub singer!

I get tired of seeing her throat (almost) when she is laughing.....

Its interesting that you caught the point that she was raised to marry well. Personally, I cannot see anything attractive in Willem. In fact, out of all the Crown Princes, he seems the blahest. So you wonder why a brilliant, intelligent woman would be attracted to him.

Think of the contrast with the Crown Princess Masako. She is class to her fingernails. A perfect Royal. She is regal and carries herself with dignity. Can you really see that in Maxima?

This is just my opinion and I have tried to be kind in what I have said. Honestly!
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Old 08-22-2006, 03:00 AM
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Originally Posted by tenngirl
Think of the contrast with the Crown Princess Masako. She is class to her fingernails. A perfect Royal. She is regal and carries herself with dignity. Can you really see that in Maxima?
Yes, I can see that in Princess Máxima. She is a lady of extremes: she can outshine any Queen or Empress with regalness. And she has done so. On State Visits you see a total different Princess Máxima. In Argentine she met the President and the Mayor in a sublime outfit, and with an attitude showing that she was every inch The Princess of Orange, a member of one of Europe's most illustrious dynasties and a future Queen.

When you see her walking during State Visits or during royal gatherings, you see her body language changing. Her head is straight up, her clothes are the most formal, hofdames and uniformed aides behind her. Every inch a Princess. I think we remember her appearance at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, or her stylish and poised presence in Thailand or the very 'Jackie O.'-gown with long elbow-gloves she worn recently during a banquet in Belgium. Her appearance combined with the dazzling Orange-Nassau jewelry, the grand pageantry the Dutch can provide and the perfect organized royal Court often shows a most serious and regal Princess Máxima. On covers you often only see a big smile. That sells. But this is not what we see on television.

But the Dutch simply have a special relationship with their royal family. They get up and they sleep in with the Orange-Nassaus. For more than 600 years they are the premier family in the Netherlands (also including Belgium and Luxembourg). The Dutch do not want to see their royal family captured in an inhuman protocol. We have always seen Princess Beatrix smiling from ear to ear or showing all her teeth indeed. She was nicknamed Prinses Glimlach (Princess Smile) before she became Queen. Now the situation is totally different. The kingship has surrounded the once so joyous and outgoing Princess Beatrix. It is as if she feels the weight of the ermine mantle. As if she feels the prying eyes of all the endless portraits of her illustrious ancestors when she walks through the palaces and castles. And of course as a Queen she received quite much influence in politics (I think the Netherlands allows their Sovereign the most political influence from all European monarchs).

For so far Princess Máxima's outgoing and extravert style, her 10.000 megawatt smile and her vibrance has made her breaking all-time highs in approval and popularity ratings. The Máximania ain't over yet, in the Netherlands.
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Old 08-22-2006, 03:14 AM
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Originally Posted by tenngirl
Personally, I cannot see anything attractive in Willem. In fact, out of all the Crown Princes, he seems the blahest. So you wonder why a brilliant, intelligent woman would be attracted to him.
What is attractive in Prince Willem-Alexander?

He is the Heir to a fortune. He is gives her access to centuries old palaces, castles, estates. He provides her dazzling diamonds, rubies, pearls, emeralds, sapphires once worn by Stuarts, Yorks, Romanovs, etc. He makes her a housewife with one of the finest porcelain, gold-, silver- and crystalware collections in the world. He surrounds her with dozens of impeccably uniformed footmen. He lets her drive in bulletfree extended royalblue Volvo limousines with chauffeur. He makes her a Princess in her own right, with her own income, her own arms, her own personal standard, her own staff. He makes her free flying in private planes from Buenos Aires to Amsterdam v.v. He makes her dazzle amidst the high and the mighty of this world.

That is what is so attractive to Prince Willem-Alexander.

Oh yes: he is a loving and a caring husband. He is the most easy-going, laidback and goodnatured man you can imagine. He is devoted to his wife and his two daughters. Maybe we must not forget this too.

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Old 08-22-2006, 03:22 AM
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It's just that I never warmed up to her because of the interview before her marriage, in which she announced that the findings of a commission, (which were that her father <had> to have had knowledge of the disappearance of a number of people during the Videla regime he was an agricultural minister at) was "just an opinion."
Actually miss Zorreguieta never said that. We have never heard her voice until the engagment. She kept her lips on each other and never spoke any word. (Which must have made a good impression on Queen Beatrix).

It was Prince Willem-Alexander who exactly said these words: "That is one opinon. There are other opinions as well."
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Old 08-22-2006, 03:24 AM
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Originally Posted by princess olga
But you know what, whatever her motives for marrying Alexandre, that doesn't mean she can't enjoy and be good at her current duties, quite the contrary. If becoming a princess was what she set out to be, that probably was because she was convinced it was the right job for her! Which on many many accounts, it is, at times I feel she is genuine, also at times I feel she's disingeneous, which isn't necessarily bad.
It's just that I never warmed up to her because of the interview before her marriage, in which she announced that the findings of a commission, (which were that her father <had> to have had knowledge of the disappearance of a number of people during the Videla regime he was an agricultural minister at) was "just an opinion." From a PR perspective, a disastrous thing to say, yet because Maxima is goodlooking and charming, the Dutch didn't seem to mind to get a blatant social climber as a queen, but it made me quite uncomfortable. Again, I think M. does a good job as a princess, but I also do think she very focusedly set out to get to this position with all means possible.
It was the Prince of Orange who said ´that is one opinion´(he did not add the ´just´). This caused some upheaval and ended up with with the prince visiting the prime minister (where he probably got a firm reprimand).

Maxima never commented on this commission. She spoke about the Videla regime during the press conference following the engagement announcement and she said that that period pains her and makes her said. She disaproved (with strong words) of the Videla regime BUT she said that she believed her father that he had no knowledge if the disappearances. Though we can argue wherther that is naive or not, I think we can not blame Maxima for believing her father.
I want to stress again that Maxima never said anything about ´just´ an opinion.

You are basing your claim of ´blatent social climber´ on personal experiences that most people do not have, so I do not think most Dutchmen share your opinion (of Maxima being a blatent social climber). Let alone that most Dutch people ´didn´t seem to mind to get a blatant social climber as a queen´.

Apart from that I find it a bit hard to imagine a succesfull New-York banker daydreaming of becoming crownprincess of The Netherlands, I think they have better things to do than that. There is no evidence that she was set out to become crownprincess, which again I think is not something which many adult women with a life would do. That she wouldn´t have married a plumber doesn´t say a thing. Most people marry people from the same socio-economic (and educational) background, and Maxima isn´t exactly a plumbersdaughter (not that I have anything against plumbers btw, I just use it as an example here).

I am rather pleased that she enjoys her present duties, so I do not see that as a negative thing.

--

on a different note, why keeps this Marc van der Linden popping up in articles. Since when is it aceptable for reliable magazines to quote and trust the opinion of a gossip journalist like him?
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