The following post is from an interview I had with Maria Ludvigsson, an award-winning columnist writer in the Swedish newspaper, Svenska Dagbladet. This is also an excerpt from the book Attractive Unattractive Americans, which are available in bookstores now.
The Swedish are known for their attitude; we think we have something to teach to the rest of the world. Even here in little Sweden, one can often find preconceived comments about how bad everything is outside of our borders. America is the country we want to talk about most when we share opinions on how things should be done.
In the presidential election in 2012, Sweden expressed more statements than usual about how crazy Americans are and that they lack the sanity to vote as honorable Swedish people would. Not infrequently, Swedish people make statements about the Swedish welfare state, equality and the excellences of their equality state. But the self-satisfaction of the Swedish ought to make every human being sick if they have a trifle of objectivity in their body.
The stuck-up comments from Swedes stem from something that reminds them of an unhappy love story. We love, admire and constantly crave to be like Americans, but they do not return our adoration. Americans mix us up with some other country that begins with an S, “Swiweden or what was the name again?”
As if that wasn’t enough, humiliated, we realize that our great love for America is worn on our sleeve, obvious to all, including ourselves and Americans. Americans manage to take care of themselves without our good Swedish advice, benevolence and attention. No other country has as many Nobel Prize winners as the United States. The latest technology, medicine, movies, music and everything we perceive as “the newest” comes from America. Of course, it can be noted that American hegemony sometimes is disturbed by up-and-coming countries, like China, who impress us with their ambitions toward labor, growth and economic stability. However, it is clear that countries like China look to one specific country as their primary inspiration—America.
The current economic crises and the low conjuncture also injure the USA’s highly esteemed reputation. That worries us; it concerns us when the one who we have all hope for doesn’t live up to our expectations. But this worry also gives us a reason, to again, tell Americans about Sweden and how we think things should be done. We are proud to showcase how good our country is financially, and we like to point out that The Financial Times selected our Swedish finance minister as the “Finance Minster of the Year, 2012.” That is a major award!
So, in our comments and greetings to the country “over there,” we Swedes explain willingly how we believe the USA should have done things. Of course, we believe they should strive to be more like us: raise taxes, secularize the religious population and, as soon as possible, build the same welfare state that Sweden did in the 1970s. And for God’s sake, let wealth be synonymous with “stealing from the poor.” Only then could the United States be more easily understood, and more important, America would be much better because they would be more Swedish.
Perhaps our love story goes back longer than we believe—to a time long before America gave us rock music, movie stars, dreams and the iMac. Wasn’t it our close family members who once left the captive and poor lands of Europe to build anew and big in the West? Why should those who left to escape religious oppression, tax collectors, counts, barons, emperors and kings ever expose themselves to that again? Why build a copy of Europe when you could build a better country in America with freedom of expression, economic liberty and religious independence of the United States? It stings a bit for the Scandinavians to acknowledge that the people who left did it to start something new.
Let it also be said that there are those who believe that everything in the U.S. is good, but some people argue that Americans in general are a trigger-happy, overweight population that believes in God but not in the welfare state. Therefore, this disparity of opinion creates a natural need to provide an alternative picture. However, neither image is correct. The U.S. is perhaps like most people: both good and bad.
You cannot paint a picture of America and get a homogeneous portrait of the country. It is broader and more diverse than what can be written in the chronicles and analyses. But America is fascinating and it is the country that, more than any other, gives us hope. We always glance westward to seek ideas and solutions. A humble view is that we have more to learn from the U.S. than they do of us.
"Damn, it's refreshing to read. This book is definitely one that all Americans should read" That Reminds me Mag
Yesterday, all hell broke loose because I wrote a sincere story about immigration issues Sweden have. I posted the article on the new contributor platform at Huffington Post, where they emphasize that writers have editorial responsibility. In retrospect, I gave them a dozen sources to corroborate the facts in the story. But they still deleted the article, and after a while they deleted all my earlier blog posts I had written for them. This is a direct censorship of my freedom to speech.
The press responsibility is to show integrity, especially when one does not agree with the contents of the case one writes. The press should also take responsibility and stand up for injustices against the common man in the street. But in this case Huffington Post has failed its responsibility totally – and probably for political reasons. Generally speaking, this is very sad for Americans who want to know what goes on in their society. It is also alarming that one can not rely on articles written by journalists who aims more to become famous rather than being acknowledged. Journalist that always says what people like to hear shouldn’t be aloud to write for the nationwide media. To put things in perspective, I have previously written critical articles about Donald Trump, which is also published on the Huffington post, but these have been left alone without discussion of none of the editors. The difference is that editors more politically accept these articles because it’s critique of Trump. This proves again what unserious medium Huffington Post really is; they obviously just want to hear one side of the story. I’m upset, surprised and disappointed that highly paid and trained journalists in one of the largest US online newspapers can act so cowardly without a spine. The whole world can now witness what they are doing. And this has really given me an awakening. Although I have thought that Trump has raved a bit too much when he says that the press is lying. Now today, I have unfortunately a very different opinion. Media themselves, with these coward acts of Huffington Post, have now proven that Trump is right in his statements about the media, but hopefully not all of them!
“The highest mode of corruption is the abuse of power.”
I also sent mail to Arianna Huffington on the subject, and asked whether she supports the decision these editors stand for, but now after more than 24 hours of waiting, I still have not received a reply, and the article is still censored.
Meanwhile, the man in the street in America stood up and supported me in this matter, and I am eternally grateful for that. The people stood up for a more balanced and fair press-media, and for freedom to speech. But unfortunately it seems that we all have a fight ahead of us, a battle I thought was won long ago, that news should be presented in a truthful and positive way. In this case, we see the opposite - a total abuse of power in terms of censorship.
I wants’ what best for America, I have always wanted a great America, and because of that I will continue to write about what I wish could have been better in the US. I will both criticize and also salute America when deserved, because I care about the country. Challenges I want to focus on is to get rural areas in the United States to work again, make a stop for crime, violence and drug trafficking, to provide middle class significantly better conditions and much mutch more. What’s amazes me now, is that the power elite in some of the American newsrooms do not even have this important subjects on their agenda. Anyway, I'll do what I can to bring factual information to Americans who want's to read them.
Thank you all for reading!
Dear readers, here is the article that was removed by Huffington Post. Thank you for reading!
Sweden has huge problems because of liberal immigration policy
Many journalists around the world are eager to condemn Donald Trump no matter what. When he Tweeted about immigration in Sweden a few days ago, social media exploded. Most of his opponents said that Trump made up the immigration problem Sweden has. They are wrong.
Only hours later there was a violent and destructive riot by immigrants in the capitol of Sweden, Stockholm. The police were forced to shoot with live ammunition to put an end to it. In Malmö, a city in southern Sweden, they have struggled with gang violence and lawlessness for years. So when Trump talks about Sweden having an immigration problem he is actually spot on.
It’s well known to Scandinavians and other Europeans that liberal immigration comes with drugs, rapes, gang wars, robbery and violence. In addition to that we see the respective nations' cultures fading away, for good and for bad. But the immigration problem is not only a Swedish predicament. The truth is that several European cities have huge immigration problems where even the police force is afraid to interfere in some neighborhoods. UK, France and several other European countries are changing rapidly with the extreme quantity of immigration. I’m not saying immigration is exclusively bad, but a lot of problems come with poor immigration policy; some of the consequences are violence, terror and gangs.
The fact is that the press here in Europe hasn’t been doing their job properly. There is this fear on the part of journalists to not report the basic truth - which is that Europe has enormous problems that comes from liberal immigration politics, and as we now see not just in Sweden, but also here in Norway. But it’s not politically correct for journalists to say or write that immigration in Europe is unsuccessful. With that said, most of the people that come from other countries are behaving flawlessly and are a gift to our society, but then again to report that everything is all good is simply wrong. These journalists should find another job, because they do not have the integrity that is required to be decent journalists.
More to read:
- Why Build a Copy of Europe When You Can Build a Better Country in America?
- Is the American Dream Still Reachable?
- The Lepers in America
- Where is The American Gentlemen?
Thank you for reading, and share if you want to.
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