I can’t tell you much about the visas, never really looked into it. You’ll find that financially speaking the Netherlands is fairly close to the US. There is better internet available almost everywhere though. I have gigabit internet + cable TV + phone in a package for about 80 EUR per month.
Politically speaking the Netherlands is very progressive. To the point where the democratic party would be a center right party in NL. We pay more taxes on pretty much everything, so there’s that. But we also have the lowest ratio of national debt to GDP. Which during the current mess the world is in meant the government used that to invest heavily in the economy and limit the effect on especially job loss. I’m not saying that means we’re doing great, it’s hard everywhere, but we’re doing better than many others.
We definitely complain about our government, but different from the US, we don’t deeply distrust it. We never went into full lockdown, but rather what our prime minister likes to call a smart lockdown. The most important part of the way it’s dealt with here is that the government gave guidelines and relied on personal responsibility and for the most part, people complain, but they listen.
NL is also pretty tech forward. This shows in a broad range of things like good internet speeds, having some of the worlds highest ranking gamers and to point it back to Storj, for a tiny country, we have quite a large amount of storage nodes.
One of the first things you’ll notice if you come here is that there are cyclists everywhere. We love our bicycles and it’s very common to use it as default for of transportation. I do almost everything short range by bicycle.
If history is your thing, we have a lot more of it than the US. We’re not as young a country. Which gives us a culture that goes back a little further. Some great, which leads to lots of great art and culture and some we’re not that proud of. Lets just say, there is a reason that the English language adopted the Dutch word for apartheid. That’s the thing with history, it tends to cut both ways.
Being an older country also means we have a mixed governmental system. Any deciding element is basically democratically chose, but we’re still a monarchy. We have a king and a royal family, which… is mostly just PR these days, haha. I’m not a big fan of it personally to be honest, I think what limited power they have is still undemocratic and a waste of tax money.
What else… we used to be known for our lax laws on drugs. But the world is catching up on that a little. Weed is technically not entirely legal, but it’s tolerated. It’s a weird construction where shops are allowed to sell it, but not buy and grow it. So at this point many places in the US have now passed us by in legalizing that stuff.
In general, we’re known as down to earth people. We tend to not make a big deal out of things. We’re generally tolerant towards different points of view, but we’ve not been immune to growing populism that is happening all around the globe.
I think that’s enough for now, but please let me know if you’re interested in anything specific or have questions.