USA - America elects a new president, but what do new Americans like people from Antwerp (Belgium) who started a different life in the States years ago, think about that? For ten weeks journalist Niels Daniel and cameraman Nico Beckers travelled through four American states to find out: New Jersey, Colorado, Georgia and New York.
In 10 episodes on RTV, they present five Flemish people who have been living in the US for years and have a well-founded view on politics and the presidential elections.
Episode 1: School is Cool
The family of Marie-Astrid Baeyens wanted quality education for the children and opted for private education. An expensive choice, because in addition to the sky-high tuition fees, the family also pays the tax for public education.
Episode 2: Under the Boardwalk
Just 200 kilometres from New York is the second-largest gambling city in the US: Atlantic City. The casinos attract millions of tourists every year. But it soon turns out that not everything shines in the gambling city.
Episode 3: Working Class Hero
Kristel Deckx from Dessel has, like many Americans, two jobs. She works as a physiotherapist, started a successful restaurant with her husband and also runs a wine bar. Why all this business? Because it's so easy in the States.
Episode 4: House of Cards
Like the rest of America, Colorado, too, has been severely affected by the credit crisis. The Dutch real estate agent René Vellinga had a difficult time for several years. But he also witnessed how his clients had their difficulties.
Episode 5: Road to Nowhere
Mariane Maes and her husband left their loss-making horticultural business in Belgium to start over in America. The family lives in a village in the middle of nowhere. Business is going so well now that they have 60 employees. Almost all Mexicans. Fortune seekers, just like them.
Episode 6: Truck Stop
Is unhealthy food in America a cliché? Absolutely. But fast food and soft drinks remain incredibly popular. Mariane Maes and her husband don't get used to it. They drive many miles to get healthy food.
Episode 7: Your Own Personal Jesus
Frank Goeyvaerts was still a child when he moved to the States. He had a successful career at an oil company and is now retired. Frank is a convinced Republican. He's tired of paying for someone else's benefits.
Episode 8: Bang Bang
Georgia, like many other American states, has a very liberal arms law. This also leads to strange situations. What to think about the village of Kennesaw, where every household is obliged to have a firearm in the house?
Episode 9: We Built This City
Lief Sannen has a successful dental practice in the heart of Manhattan. Without having to work hard she earns a lot. And that doesn't come as a surprise, because a visit to the dentist costs a fortune. Health insurances are very expensive in America, and on top of that the own contribution is a lot higher than in Belgium.
Episode 10: On Every Street
Nowhere in the US the crisis hit harder than in New York. Never before has the city counted more homeless people. Even people who used to have a decent job now often end up on the streets.
TV (in Dutch)
- 'Episode 1 - School is Cool', RTV, 18/10/2012.
- 'Episode 2 - Under the Boardwalk', RTV, 25/10/2012.
- 'Episode 3 - Working Class Hero', RTV, 1/11/2012.
- 'Episode 4 - House of Cards', RTV, 8/11/2012.
- 'Episode 5 - Road to Nowhere', RTV, 15/11/2012.
- 'Episode 6 - Truck Stop', RTV, 22/10/2012.
- 'Episode 7 - Your Own Personal Jesus', RTV, 29/11/2012.
- 'Episode 8 - Bang Bang', RTV, 6/12/2012.
- 'Episode 9 - We Built This City', RTV, 13/12/2012.
- 'Episode 10 - On Every Street', RTV, 20/12/2012.