Why Obama ♥s Sweden
Although Barack Obama plans to participate in the Group of 20 economic summit early next month in St. Petersburg, Russia, he chose to cancel a scheduled one-on-one meeting with Vladimir Putin. His dander is raised by disagreements between the two concerning Russia granting temporary asylum to NSA leaker Edward Snowden, the civil war in Syria, ballistic missile defense, and the one thing that really sticks in Obama's craw: Russian anti-gay rights policy.
So, instead of "holding a U.S.-Russia Summit in early September," Obama chose to seek an antidote to heartless, homophobic Russia in a country with people who claim to be some of the "happiest" and pro-gay on the planet. That country is the socialist entitlement utopia called Sweden.
Per Bylund is an economist and senior fellow at the Ludwig von Mises Institutet i Sverige, a "research and educational center of classical liberalism, libertarian political theory, and the Austrian School of economics," and a student of Swedish socialism. It turns out that Obama's antidote is toxic. In an article entitled How the Welfare State Corrupted Sweden, Bylund articulated perfectly the ultimate end of the type of society Barack Obama anticipates establishing here in America:
This new morality ... is a morality claiming [that] independence can only be achieved through handing over responsibility to others, and that freedom can only be attained through enslaving others (and oneself). The result of this degenerated morality on a social or societal level is a disaster economically, socially, psychologically, and philosophically.
Still, Sweden, home to fewer than 10 million people, typifies the sort of statism President Obama covets. That's why while he's there, he may need to wear an IKEA frog bib to catch all the drool running down his chin as he marvels at life in an out-and-out liberal Nirvana. What's scary is that despite the impending ruin that is sure to result from what Byland described as "degenerated morality on a social or societal level," one can almost hear Barack Obama sighing to himself, "perfekt!"
Unfortunately, the one obstacle that prevents the president's progressive vision from fully coming to pass is that unlike the "people of the Swedes," as they like to call themselves, large numbers of greedy Americans are less compliant when it comes to paying high taxes. In Sweden, workers willingly contribute somewhere around 70% of their monthly salary to finance free public services like childcare, health care, K-through-university education, retirement pensions, and sick leave.
The Scandinavian nation's majority support for their secular government is a result of the "new morality" Byland explained. Thus, only 17-18% of Swedes consider religion important, making it one of the most secular nations in the world.
Moreover, the most recently available statistics show that even after the morning-after pill was introduced in 2011, 37,693 abortions were performed that year, which drove the abortion rate in Sweden to 20.9 per 1,000 women.
So, all things considered, Sweden is most assuredly a place where President Obama can feel more at home as NSA leaker Edward Snowden currently feels cradled in the arms of Mother Russia.
Regrettably, Barack Obama's time in Sweden will be short; that's why, while he's in the most homosexual-friendly country in Europe, prior to heading toward homophobic Russia the president should try to learn as much as he can from his Swedish friends.
Take for example gay propagandist athlete Emma Green-Tregaro. Despite slouching schoolboy Vladimir Putin's anti-propaganda law, in the run-up to the upcoming 2014 Sochi Olympics at the track and field world championships in Moscow, the Swedish high jumper did not let Russia stop her from voicing her opinion. To register her support for gay rights, Emma painted her fingernails the colors of the gay rainbow flag.
The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) warned that the "The [IAAF] code of conduct clearly states the rules do not allow any commercial or political statements during the competition." So, after acting in a manner that Russian pole-vault gold medalist Yelena Isinbayeva called "unrespectful," Ms. Green-Tregaro repainted her gay fingernails a Russian-friendly shade of red.
Fortunately, IAAF rules do not apply to the oftentimes "unrespectful" Barack Obama, who has already publicly condemned the Russian anti-gay legislation. That's why, before flying off to St. Petersburg to deliver to Putin yet another colorful middle finger salute, our First Gay President can demonstrate what he's learned in Sweden by paying a visit to Emma Green-Tregaro's nail salon.
Jeannie hosts a blog at www.jeannie-ology.com