I spent the first 23 years of my life in Sweden, which was for the most part bloody excellent. My primary and secondary schooling left a little to be desired as I was taught by an unhinged, perma-tanned, exclusively beige-wearing Israelite and then by a man who had a rather unpleasant nervous breakdown, for which he blamed us and resulted in him only wearing grey clothes (yes, even his shoes were grey). Despite these events, the free dental treatments, fabulous health care and excellent housing, it is the Swedish educational system that I have come to appreciate more than anything, it is mind-blowingly phenomenal, especially in comparison to the UK’s backward pedagogy.
My beef with Sweden is that it takes itself so fucking seriously; it is really sanctimonious about its neutrality, excellent plumbing, superb education system, its progressive social policies, 100% literacy, fiscal prudence, its national health system, etc, etc. I do concede that there are many great things about Sweden and I am very lucky to have grown up there, you really do get looked after, as a forfeit you also get the shit patronised out of you on an almost daily basis. It is this holier-than-thou attitude, letting you know how lucky you are to be in Sweden all the fucking time, which allows me a sick pleasure to share some of the jaw-droppingly heinous events Sweden has been responsible for.
History classes were always one of my favourites, along with politics, art, literature and philosophy, and as in any country, national heroes start to emerge during the course of 12 years schooling. One of Sweden’s national heroes is Carl von Linné (1707-1778), a botanist and the father of biological taxonomy; taking it upon himself to create a system within which any organism on Earth could be categorised, his epic Systema Naturae was published in 1735. Linné divides “homo” into 5 varieties: Americanus, Europaeus, Asiaticus, Afer and Monstrosus. Linné bases his classifications on geography and skin colour, but throws some good, old-fashioned humourism in the mix for good measure. In Fauna Suecica, Linné divides Europaeus into a further 4 categories: Goths, Finns, Lapps and the remaining Europeans, or others. The original Goths were from the Southern part of Sweden and characterised by their straight blond hair and blue eyes, this variant of the “homo” is obviously superior according to Linné, who was blond and blue eyed. Modern Swedes, as you can see, come from a long line of self-congratulatory cunts.
The tripe Linné wrote about us humans and our taxonomy does not feature in the Swedish curriculum, it’s the stuff you find out if you bother your tiny little mind with independent study. Personally, I was too preoccupied with playing out, and later with my libido (and an inexplicable fascination with nail varnish) to bother with any extracurricular reading. In fact, I lived in a part of Gothenburg (yes, the Borough of Goths) called Linnéstaden (Linnétown), oblivious to the fact that this hero of Swedish science was also one of the forbearers of institutional, colonial racism. But it gets worse, much worse!
Linné’s ideas took hold at a time when scientific discovery became a vital part of government, used to justify their actions at home and abroad. Having been an aggressive coloniser for a couple centuries, and especially enjoying a good war with Russia over who should rightfully be pillaging the poor Finns to fuck, Sweden opted for military neutrality in 1912. To be honest, the Swedes didn’t quite get the hang of not raping neighbouring states in the bot-bot for decades and when WW2 broke out, Sweden had a little relapse: officially sticking to its neutral policy, the Swedish government let Nazi troops make use of its rail network on the sly, so the fascist bastards could invade Norway without much trouble. And they wonder why the Norwegians and the Finns hate them! In fact, your average Swede would probably smugly deduce that Finland and Norway are jealous of Sweden somehow, despite them being infinitely more successful than the Swedes with all that integrity and oil.
Interestingly, one of the reasons the Nazi’s wanted to invade Norway was that it was thought to be the birthplace of the Aryan race, and where did they get this notion? Why, hair brained ideas of racial purity based on the works of the 18th century Swedish botanist and taxonomist Carl von Linné of course! Another reason to invade? The Nazis relied heavily on Sweden’s willingness to sell them its precious iron ore, in order that Hitler’s 3rd Reich could sustain its weapons industry. The Swedish iron ore came through Norwegian ports. As a result of the Nazi invasion of Norway, brought to you courtesy of Sweden, over a third of Norway’s Jewish population was murdered.
I should probably mention that Sweden, and especially a man called Raoul Wallenberg, did rescue many Jewish families from almost certain death by arranging asylum and passports before, during and after WW2. However, these gallant acts of hospitality and kindness, that were very much highlighted in my history lessons, seem a little disingenuous and futile in light of the Norway debacle just mentioned, and it gets worse, much worse!
After the publication of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species (1859) and the subsequent furore that ensued, less brilliant scholars would apply elements of evolutionary theory to their own causes, in order to gain some academic clout. While these misappropriations were mostly inoffensive, at times these methods would endorse some deeply questionable scientific bilge with disastrous consequences. The travesty is most apparent when applied to Romantic Nationalism, a wave of patriotic zeitgeist that permeated the culture of European countries in the 19th century. I’m not going to go into Romanticism here, suffice to say it fills people’s heads with a load of nonsense about who they are “by nature”, “noble savages” and other absolute twaddle, it makes my fucking blood boil. By first filling people’s heads with romantic thoughts of their nation, authenticating what were essentially myths with the dubious application of notions such as “natural selection” and “survival of the fittest”, allowed National Socialism real power and ultimately resulted in the facilitation of the holocaust. Ta-da!
Nowhere, apart from maybe Germany, did the culture of National narcissism get a stronger foothold than (yes, you guessed it) Sweden. By the end of the 19th century, a difficult 100 years for old Sweden, new sciences like Eugenics, Race Biology and Social Engineering had gained impressive momentum, in academia as well as politically. That is how a sinister little man called Herman Lundborg (1868 – 1943), with degrees in Psychiatry, Marine Biology and Medicine was able to lobby the Swedish government to finance and endorse his National Institute For Race Biology at the University of Uppsala, the Swedish equivalent of Cambridge, in 1921.
Titles of his publications include: The Racial Characters of the Swedish Nation, Racial Biology and Racial Hygiene (1914), Swedish Racial Science (1927) and The Western Nations in Danger (1934). The translation is approximate, but you get the gist. Lundborg spent the latter part of his career with an honorary doctorate at the University of Heidelberg advising the German government from 1936 (yep, Nazi Germany), he was the vice president for the International Federation of Eugenics from 1933 and he publicly declared the opinion that people with brown hair were less capable of moral rectitude that blond people. Why? Because, as Lundborg said: “they are clearly mixed race.” Couldn’t say fairer than that, eh? What a prize twat!
As for Lundborg’s crowning achievement in winning the prestigious “history’s most proactive bigot” award, Lundborg instigated an attack on his own, what a curveball. As head of the Institute for Race Biology at Uppsala, Lundborg succeeded in getting a bill passed that would allow the state to forcefully sterilise members of the population, in order that they would not pass on their undesirable characteristics. Between 1934, when the law was passed, and 1976, when this absurd piece of legislation was finally removed from the statutes, the Swedish government sterilised in excess of 63,000 of its own people. I’m sorry, that is quite a lot of unfathomable information to take in, but yes, during the course of 42 years the Swedish government rendered 1% of its population infertile. It is rather remarkable.
Other than racial hygiene, there were other motivations for sterilising the unfortunate, as though racial hygiene wasn’t bad enough. Officially, other than purifying the Swedish race, which is obviously a pressing matter, criminality, mental “sluggishness” and promiscuity, were listed as “internal enemies” of the potential excellence of the Swedish. Strange then, that although men are notoriously more promiscuous than women, men constitute an alarming majority in any nation’s prisons and educational subnormality occurs equally in men and women, over 75% of Sweden’s enforced sterilisations were performed on women; despite that sterilising women is invasive, dangerous and incapacitating, whereas a vasectomy is practically a piece of piss, and this in a country who parades their gender equality around like a fucking prize pony. The whole thing is so bloody sinister, I’m not surprise they don’t like bringing it up in school, but personally I am so much happier living in a dirty, fucked-up place with piss-poor plumbing, that owns up to its shortcomings, than somewhere like Sweden, Canada or Switzerland.
Mia Tagg 2009®