By Nordstjernan columnist Ulf Nilson, September 2010

In my opinion Sweden has gone a wee bit crazy lately. I refer, of course, to the election and―most particularly―to the role of media.
It so happened (as most of you surely know) that the extreme right wing party, Sverige Demokraterna (SD), got some 5.7 percent of the votes, enough for 20 seats in the 349 seat parliament. I say, so what?
Well, the SD is against the immigration policies defended by all other parties. SD thinks the so-called new Swedes have become too many, too costly (it’s a fact that many don’t work), too criminal (they go to jail proportionately much more often than the Swedes, let us say, of “the old kind”). The immigrants (invandrare) live mainly in ghettos―the most infamous of which are Rosengård in Malmö and Rinkeby in Stockholm, where a police car is always escorted by another police car, for if the two cops leave the first car to do something on foot, the car will almost certainly be stolen. In the same way, the fire brigade needs an escort, because kids (and sometimes non-kids) will throw rocks at them.
The above is true. But―and here is the problem―in Sweden it is absolutely prohibited to depict any part of immigration as a problem.
If you say or write what I have just written you are labeled “främlingsfientlig”―hostile to strangers, a xenophobe (I know, a word rarely used in America—the true United Nations of the world—where everyone is an immigrant, although first and foremost an American), most likely a racist, fascist or, why not, a neo Nazi.
Common guys and girls know very well that the very large numbers of people who have landed in Sweden during the last thirty years or so all too often don’t learn Swedish, don’t get jobs for one reason or another and cost millions in social security and other programs. But to discuss this is to be automatically considered a horrible, reactionary person.
SD is openly stating the problems and for this they and their voters are to be excluded from the political scene.
But lo and behold, I sometimes think: “It’s quite alright to vote for the former communists, some of whom (like their leader, Lars Ohly) are quite unrepentant and whose role models in the days of Stalin murdered millions of people.”
But lines like that fall on deaf ears. The enemy today is SD and the SD should be killed by silence, not argument. It’s as if the established politicians and media are thinking in unison: "If we don’t mention them, don’t recognize that they have a substantial following, people will think they don’t really exist and vote for us instead...." In this the politicians have been acting like one, regardless of the fact that anyone can easily understand that this strange silence makes people want to know more about the SD. And some even come to the conclusion―and quite warranted, in my opinion―that the established parties behave in a very undemocratic way.
Same with media. Not only would an article saying good things about the SD immediately be spiked, but the writer would most likely be kicked out the window, or at least seriously reprimanded. The SD is so bad, the politico-media establishment seems to say that it should be killed with silence, contempt and dictatorial methods.
All this happened, I am sorry and ashamed to say, a few days ago in Sweden. The election was won by the mildly right-of-center Moderaterna in coalition with the liberal Folkpartiet, the Christian democrats and the once farmer’s party Center. It was the first time a right wing government was reelected and the Social Democrats simultaneously made its worst election since 1914, but stayed the largest party.
What all this means is that not much will change in Sweden. Self-inflicted or not, any issues with the marginalization of immigrants by Swedish policy itself will not see the light of day. And rest assured, the SD will have very little influence. As they should: They represent a mere 5.7 percent of voters, but remember that they are voters who wish their voices to be heard in the democracy. They were voted in by common people, who thought democracy is democracy, weren’t they?