The situation is this

The situation is this:

In Denmark (and Sweden) we pay 40- 50 % of our income in taxes. For this money we get free education, free medical care, infrastructure and so on. We house the homeless, we give benefits to the unemployed and the sick.
For centuries our forefathers fought for this, the welfare model.
They died for it.
Freedom. Equality. Brotherhood. These are not just empty word you know, someone fought for this, they also fought for women’s rights and the right to organize (unions)
We live in lands that flow with honey and gold. But someone died for that. They believed in that. They wanted us, the generations to come, to experience that.
This.

The situation is this:

The Scandinavian countries are somewhat small countries, we are very tight knitted and very homogeneous. We look the same, we worship the same god(s), our culture is old, most of our social rules are not even written down they´ve just been passed on for centuries:
We´re all in the same boat! Don´t be different!
If you´re different you are in the position of defense, you are per definition, a traitor.
You can´t critize the boat, the direction of the boat or the more fundamental way it is being steered. You can protest yes, but if you want fundamental change, like the change our forefathers wanted… well. They emigrated to America.
60% of the population in this very area where I live.
They emigrated.
But the ones that stayed behind DID get some change done though.They did and you´ve got to respect that. Only thing is that they changed the layout of the boat, the infrastructure and the management … they didn´t change the more fundamental fact: conformity.

We´re all in the same boat.
We´re all in the same boat.
We´re all in the same boat- but the poles are melting and what about that giant iceberg right there in front of us, look, look up, look ahead, watch out!

The situation is this:

You can´t leave society if you live in Scandinavia. Homeschooling is illegal and if you don´t take your child to see the doctor social services will come knocking on your door. You cannot choose to not have an income and not have a job- you will be required to pay taxes anyway. You cannot terminate your “CPR” number thus your contract with society and you cannot negotiate with public opinion, it´s everywhere, it´s in your head.
In all fairness public opinion is somewhat liberal here compared to other countries. But it´s changing.

The situation is this:
Austerity means cutting welfare benefits and government spending while at the same time giving tax cuts and supporting the private market with the hope that this will generate jobs and the wealth will trickle down.
Our socialist government (!) speaks of nothing but evergoing growth while they refer to citizens using terms like cost/benefit.
Social services are presented as a GIFT not a RIGHT.
Not as something our forefathers fought and died for, they did you know, because they wanted a BETTER world. A BETTER society.

Freedom (to own your own life and do with it as you please) have seized to exists. Equality has gone down the drain, new rules and regulation are in effect working to stigmatize and separate the people, the population has begun to hate each other. Brotherhood, o brother… where art thou!?

I can´t even begin to describe the heartbreak I feel. I believed in the justice of this system, I saw the beauty,  I played my part.
I see it crumble before my very eyes and then I see this:

The largest bank in Denmark (Danske Bank) have record-breaking profits, so has Maersk and even the social responsible concern of Lego is showing major surplus on their account but they´re firing people and unemployment is skyrocketing. Meanwhile every newspaper or newsroom are  hunting  down the unemployed as if they were fair game.

The situation is this:

The population has begun to attack eachother. It´s all normal now. It´s the new normal.
The population is looking for the lowest common denominator, it´s bloodthirsty, it kicks downwards,  facism is rising- take a look at Greece. This is not something happening far, far away, this is not something happening to somebody else.
This is happening to YOU.

The situation is this:

We bash and beat the hearts and souls of those individuals that dare to speak up, just as we bash and beat the very soil we stand on. We raise animals as if they were where machines, we eat plastic disguised as food, we shake scandal after scandal off chanting “This is the best of all possible civilisations”.

The situation is that the way we treat our fellow citizens is merely a reflexion of how we treat the environment, how we treat the environment is merely a reflection of how we treat each other.

Facts dosn´t matter anymore.
Facts dosn´t matter in matters of exploitation what matters are emotions and here´s the real tragedy:
Two years ago we ran like hell into the woods.
Why?
Because we were getting number and number- we had to run to stay alive.
And that´s how it gets to you.

Two years ago it was a political party speaking of emigrants as if they were leprosy incarnated. Now it´s some other political party. The single case stories continue to outrage the population and I guess that´s why we become unaffected. Numb. Dumb.
There´s simply too much.

We know that chocolate is produced by child slaves, we know iphones are produced on factories where poor underpaid desperate people never see the sunlight, plastic bags kills wildlife, there´s an island made out of garbage floating around and that each and every of our modern comforts is something we have at the expense of someone ELSE.

We know time is running out. We know this financial crisis exceeds everything we have ever experienced before. We know we are heading for a fall, the forests are burning, the waters are raising, time is running out.
Numb.

Neither facts nor feelings can get to you anymore.
THAT`S the tragedy

Two years ago I ran to get my family to safer grounds. I was not going to let my children experience Titanic unprepared just because I happened to be afraid of loosing privileges or comforts nor because I was afraid of change, public opinion or myself. I could at least teach how to swim.
… if you catch my drift…

The situation is this:

You can´t speak like I just did.
If  you do you´re a fanatic, an extremist, you´re radicalised and there I go.
Overboard.

The people in the boat are scared. Scared people do the darndest things!

You can capitalize on fear- you can give fear a direction. Some politicians do but you can´t be all like “hey man, the boat is sinking” because then people would have to face the fear.
And there´s a LOT.
It´s better with all this pseudo- hate. Keeps us preoccupied. Idle hands, you know.

The situation is this:

I´ve been here before. I left.
Then, two years later it´s winter, we´re homesafe I begin reading the news again, listening to the murmur in the boat.
It´s gotten worse.

The situation is this:

We´re at war.
There´s a civil war going on.
It´s violent all right, in words and sooner or later it will be in actions too.

The situation is this:

The boat is ´a rocking so don´t come a knocking.

The situation is this:

I don´t know what to do.
Social injustice is just as dangerous as climate change. It´s all stems from bullying and exploitations and I know that facts don´t work on bully’s.
Pretty pictures of flowers do. And hugs. Right?

Right?

The situation is this:

He said “We can´t hide forever. We have to hold our grounds. We´ve got to take some of the bullets for the poor and the weak, we can´t participate in this ritual sacrifice, we HAVE to speak up”

I looked at the sunset as I do every evening. That´s one of the privileges of living here. Like this.
And I don´t know.
The situation is that I don´t know.

(mamma duck and duckling leaving the boat, last spring)

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11 thoughts on “The situation is this

  1. I hear you. I agree. I am completely and utterly overwhelmed by it. By the way our “modern society” has been designed. I am paralyzed by it. It is a hellish can of worms. Everyone on prozac, everyone stressed out, everyone overwhelmed. You asked for advice. I’ve got nothing. My own coping strategy is this: See the greatness in the little things. Don’t stare directly at it. Tend my garden. Give out hugs.

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  2. I am fucking freaking out too ….. it’s looking more and more like hell over here. I think part of the reason is this:
    “If people base they identity on identifying with authority, freedom causes anxiety. They must the conceal the victim in themselves by resorting to violence against others” – Arno Gruen

    Right now the violence here is still only words, but they are some mean mother fucker words, evil and destructive and hell bent on ousting all the poor, unemployed and ethnic people.

    But we have to be smart, look past that, look at the real players in this hate game. And i have been doing this for a while and I have good news: they are not nearly as meany as we think. Most of this hate comes from two sources; all the Saxo Bank founded hate propaganda and the umbrella of Danish People Party sub-organizations, like the “Freedom of Speach Organization” …. imagine STEALING beautiful words like that for a mission bent on destroying other people – my soul cries. But it is all a scam, they make noise like they are a battalion of millions op people when i fact it is only very few, but they are very effective in stealing the WORDS in the news – and unfortunately our unenlightened and/or scare politicians go for it. Stupid Stupid people (manipulated sorry). The point being this is NOT US and they are NOT ALL OF US …. WE ARE ALL OF US ….. and we are the majority, we just need to see this.

    Che Guevara fought fascism in Cuba and all over South America. At some point in life he talks to these two American young boys who came and wanted to join, he told them go home your the lucky ones you are in the belly of the beast. This is the best place to defeat the beast from, from within …… go home and keep fighting (shit, didn’t work to well though;-)

    I am still in the belly of the beast and I am ready to “fight”. I wasn’t just 9 months ago, but I am NOW!! – it is all going to hell, but WE wont let it, cos this is out country for ALL of us. And here comes THE GOOD NEWS: I am not alone – there are many many more just like me. We will have to look to dismantle the institutions that keeps us down and enslaved, the first one is our so called democracy – we don’t live in a democracy and we never have – the kings is now the government but the country is still run by money interest like it has been as long back as before the 1. Queen Margrethe. This will prob be a long process but it will be a process fueled by words, cooperation, understanding and love …… cos we are all bothers and sisters, sons and daughters, mothers and fathers – we are all one

    Will this work? – I don’t know
    But if it doesn’t – I am still ready to fight – and even though it is more than 24 years ago since I handled a rifle, I still know how it work – 8 bullets in the mag one in the chamber – (Grant rifle made by US for the Korean war) lock and load mother fuckers!!! (sound of a scream) FUCK I did NOT just write this I DID NOT – this is crazy – the WORLD is crazy!!! …… but hold on now, this sounds familiar …. we have been here before not very long ago. Our old WW2 Freedom fights feel it too, they too know this is wrong – they see the headlines, they saw them in the 1930’ies too – And you know what, these old geezers, the ones still alive that is, are getting ready to dust of the berets oil the old submachineguns and hit the streets – They are the one that will teach all of us what is like to fight for your freedom – if it come to that – THEY are our closest connection to our own past and to the ideals that we lost along the way ……. this is NOT a dream – this is A GOAL – a way forward!!
    (damn so sorry for going wack job on you blog didn’t mean to 😉

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  3. Neither facts nor feelings can get to you anymore.
    THAT`S the tragedy . . .
    Yes, I feel it, and my soul is crying.
    My hope is first to make some strong and healthy cooperating communities, to line our selves up, help each other to get rid of the super individualism, learn how to deal with each other, and the crops and grow strong and wise.
    The second hope is that super hackers or a big magnet or I dont know what, will make all the capitalist speculation money numbers on computers into zero and one numbers, so all owning giant amounts of money, would disappere,
    Ross Jacksons writes in hes new book “occupy worldstreat”:

    The dilemma seems to be: those who can, will not; those who will, cannot.
    and —–
    It is probably too late to avoid a collapse of civilization as we know it due to an obsession with economic growth on a finite planet that cannot tolerate much more without collapsing.

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  4. Beautifully written. Not sure that I fully understand all of it. But I do get the big picture. And I agree to what I understand from it. We too have chosen to live abroad. In a poor country by Western standards. But what we find here is an authentic life. No stress. True “samvær” between people. I look forward to read your book. It is needed. Thanks.

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  5. My great maternal grandparents were from Sweden.
    I’m sad to hear that the situation was so dire there:(
    The system here, in the U.S. is also VERY dysfunctional.
    My prayers, hugs & strength, I send to you.

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  6. Hello – great piece – I agree on most of your points! Homeschooling is not illegal in Denmark, however, although it can be difficult. In Sweden it appears to be “almost” illegal, which is why quite a few Swedish homeschoolers have left Sweden. Very sad, really. We’re a bunch of homeschoolers who meet up once in a while and we have a website, but I dont want to spam your comments with the url – write me if you’re interested in pursuing homeschooling – it can be done 🙂

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  7. I’m heartbroken and terrified of the future because of what is currently happening in Sweden. The worst thing is the deceit. How the government lie and mislead people. They talk about “working people” like they’re all the same. Like their politics are for all of them. From the people in industries to the ones who own big companies. And they succeed in this lie! People get a few thousand crowns in reduced tax every month and completely forget or don’t even know where those money are coming from. From the welfare! We’re selling out our welfare for tax reductions. And when there no longer are any governmentally owned hospitals, schools and retirement homes they will not be for free any more. When companies own all of it, they WILL start requiring money for their services. Companies doesn’t do things because they care. Americans own a huge part of the Swedish welfare. These people, living in a different country, are so far removed from the people they’re supposed to care for that they can’t even relate. It’s just numbers for them. We’re numbers for them. This is by far one of the worst things which has happened in Sweden in a very long time. The right-wing government tearing down everything which has meant security in this country. The things people died for, as you said.

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  8. People around the whole world feel like you I do! We must be the change we wish to see and teach our children to teach and question… I’d like to post this on my blog if you don’t mind. I’ve come to notice I seem to have a lot in common with Scandinavian people I enjoy for the most part they way you all seem to be together for the common well being but just like everywhere else the pocket stuffing big business and banks are getting in the way 😦 please email me and let me know if it would be ok to quote this all on my blog:) artist.manderz@gmail.com

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    1. You are very wellcome to share the words. We need to begin telling new stories and sharing new stories. So share away. Thank you!

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  9. Oh the situation. Might be a little off topic. Might be bulls eye.

    I escaped fundamentalism once, a religious sect, in wich I was born into, and the price was family, friends and everyone really. So all alone (with my lover, husband and awesomeness himself, thank god(!?)) in survival mode, with that necessary optmism, I wandered into normal free society. With all the right intentions of learning how to be a normal functioning citizen, free from the rules, the surveillance, the demands and constant pressure for doing more more more.

    FREE!?

    Not so much. I had studied all aspects of brainwash, mindfuck, cult-mechanisms, mental dissonance and so on and on. Society (as in here in DK) – and you of course know all this – fits every damn profile and! So I’m just stuck in another bigger and maybe even more scary sect, cult, whatever. Not what I expected, I admit. At least I am somewhat conscious about it. Anyways, this comment wasn’t supposed to be all about pain and mindfuck. I really love your work and find it extremely important and meaningfull. The cabins, the kids, nature and love as the, sometimes worn out, umbrella you rely on.

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