Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Swedish Election Season? Swedish Election Season. Again.

So there’s going to be another election in March of 2015. Which is unfortunate since there was just an election not too long ago. You may remember it because the racist Sverigedemokraterna ended up the third biggest party by garnering 13% of the country’s vote.

A coalition minority government was formed. A budget, which is necessary for the ruling coalition to, you know, rule, was voted down today. The government was unable to reach any agreement and Sverigedemokraterna were able to flex whatever racist muscles they wanted. They chose to flex their most racist one and have apparently decided to topple the government, force a new election, try to force immigration upon the people as the only issue of consequence, and sit back and watch as the remaining parties bicker and blame.

This is what can best be described as a high-stakes pissing contest with Sverigedemokraterna on the other side making the rules. And the wind is at their backs. Only one party wins in a pissing contest like that. The other side gets very, very wet.

Right now, the contestants are blaming each other. There’s plenty of blame to go around. Depending on which side of the spectrum you’re on, you’re probably convinced that it’s the other side’s fault. And it is. You’re all right. For once.

I don’t know how these things work. There hasn’t been a new election like this since 1958. I don’t know if this will galvanize voters, or leave them disgusted, disillusioned, and disinterested in actually voting. My concern is that this will only serve the interests of the racists. Look, they’ll say. Look how incapable the other parties are of ruling. Look at what they made us do. Look at how they overlook us. Look how they ignore our questions and concerns. Look at their accusations of racism just because we want to limit immigration. Look, they’ll say.

And people will look. And they’ll come out and they’ll vote. And what was once 13% will only rise. Because what they’re looking at is easily digestible fear mongering spewed from heads on a suit rather than heads on a uniform. And even though there are no real solutions there, they look and sound reasonable to far too many. And that scares me.

Maybe this time Alliansen, the more conservative coalition, will win. It doesn’t matter. Because Sverigedemokraterna will do the same thing. They’ve already said they’ll do the same thing. They won’t pass the budget unless the ruling coalitions bow to their demands on immigration. And we’ll be right back where we are today. With no government and a bunch of racists sitting back watching and counting their new votes.

I don’t know how these things work. But I know that the other parties better get their act together, talk, negotiate, find common ground, and stop pissing into the wind. Because waiting for the wind to shift is too risky. And we’re all getting wet in the process.

Welcome to Sweden. And electoral chaos.

9 comments:

  1. Scary.
    And, judging just by skin colour, I was once proud of saying that I saw more people of different skin colours mingling together in Sweden than in Italy or Spain, for example.
    I don't know what to say. Nothing that I can say will add to the discussion or to your disgust, which is the same as mine. Worse than that is that sheer perplexity before racist behaviours has, shamefully, paralised me from taking action, some kind of action, even when I just don't know what to do. I want to believe that the best behaviour against racism is to act naturally when you are "expected" not to do so. Just solemnly ignore the turning of noses at us and keep going. That, sometimes, may teach people something, or paralise them instead of us. But and when that doesn't happen and some stupid big jerk son of a @#$%&! comes at us violently?

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    1. Neither do I. Don't know what to say or what to do. It's just quite disheartening.

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  2. It sounds like the voters need more—and consistent—information about the reality of immigration. Facts, not demagoguery. SD is injecting so much fear in the society—and extremists in neighboring countries love it. Is the media educating people? Are Swedes and immigrant groups meeting together to rally support for a rational solution?

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    1. Maybe. But based on the speech that SD's current party leader gave before announcing that they would be bringing down the government, the party is a one-issue party and it seems a whole lot of their voters like it that way. I just don't know if information is enough.

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    2. No, information is not enough. But it is one part of a comprehensive plan of counter-attack. Protests and long-term efforts that will bring diverse Swedes together with those who are susceptible to the poison of SD rhetoric.

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  3. For the first time in my life, I'm really scared for the future of Sweden and its inhabitants...

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    1. Linn, I share that feeling, but we need to take that fear do something positive with it. Even though I am in the US, I am doing whatever I can to help positive change. SD has put the fear out there to cause this mischief. It must be countered through various means. I wrote a children's book about it. Maybe you can meet with neighbors (assuming you live in Sweden) or get "ethnic" Swedes to mentor immigrant youth or volunteer at schools with non-white or immigrant students.

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    2. It's going to be an interesting few months seeing how people respond. I hope we get past the blaming and move on to actual progress.

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