Back in 1988 there was a referendum, in the small municipality of Sjöbo, on whether the municipality should accept refugees or not.
It doesn’t matter, in this text, what position you take on immigration, the point stressed here being, that the referendum was the start of a class war, in Sweden. It is the war between (roughly) an urban intellectual class and a rural working class.
The educated urban middle class would increasingly view the rural population as peasants and white trash. With time that compliment has been extended to anyone outside the chattering classes; people with a real job – the servants.
With Olof Palme there was a change of focus, instead of building a better Sweden, the worthy task became building a better world. The practical was superseded by idealism. At the same time, a Swedish self-image of the best country in the world, spread, like a virus. Accordingly, you could only be dissatisfied with the conditions in Sweden, if there was something wrong with you.
Almost all Swedish people, have their origin in a very plain rural settings – if not in outright poverty. There is a sense of shame, for poverty, the simplicity and the lack of education and sophistication, that manifests itself in an urban snobbism. That snobbism defies its purpose, because it is so obviously a compensation.
There are, then, many layers of existential denial as we arrive in the 21 century. Swedish people have to demonstrate that the are modern and urban, not backward and rural, by positioning themselves at the liberal end of various issues, such as immigration .
Since there are so many levels of denial, and no real intellectual process, those issues signalling modernism also became taboo.
Up until the refugee crisis of 2015, it sort of ”worked”, but after that, the pressure was too great and the discussion could no longer be supressed. We had the rise of ”free media”, that is media to some extent inspired by Joe Rogan, creating platforms of their own. Most of them broke new ground, by opening up for a discussion about immigration in Sweden.
Five years later, most of these media are still revealing truths, about immigration and the Swedish media landscape. But Sweden is (actually) a nation. Through the immigration, Sweden has become an increasingly diverse society. If you happen to be born with personality traits not as anxious, as the chattering classes positioning themselves, and allow yourself to be curious about that large, very complex nation, Sweden would be like a big, overwhelming, smörgåsbord. But, that is all too far out the springboard. Unable to talk about immigration, they are all unable to talk about anything but immigration.
They are like atheists, unable to talk about anything but God.
Everyone, who is a part and expression of that varied complex nation, is still at sea.