EU slammed for ‘propaganda’

The European Union spends millions every year on publicity material about itself that can only be described as propaganda, a Swedish think-tank has said.

In a report being released on Monday, Timbro, a free-market think-tank, argues that the EU should draw a clearer distinction between public service information and propaganda.

“The EU’s propaganda apparatus has until now gone uncriticised, despite the fact that it acts in a way that would not be tolerated in any member state. In Sweden we have had a broad debate about the way government agencies and publicly-owned companies push political agendas,” the report’s authors Philip Thomasson-Leruf and Hannes Kataja write in a joint article with Timbro’s managing director, Maria Rankka, in Monday’s Dagens Nyheter.

“The fact that the commissioner responsible, Margot Wallström, is Swedish, doesn’t improve matters,” the trio write.

The report’s authors stress that they think it’s essentially positive that the EU wants to inform the public about its work, but add that “the money we give to the EU should not be spent on persuading people in an intrusive manner of the Union’s virtues.”

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