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Liberals call for lower taxes at party congress

TT/Christine Demsteader · 20 Nov 2009, 13:47

Published: 20 Nov 2009 13:47 GMT+01:00

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Björklund led proceedings on the second day of the congress on Friday with foreign policy issues high on the agenda.

Expressing his support for Swedish military in Afghanistan, he told members that, among other assignments, the mission of Swedish soldiers is to protect the rights of girls to attend school.

”The Taliban are burning down schools and spraying acid in the eyes of schoolgirls,” he said and continued by attacking the opposition Left Party for proposing to withdraw troops.

Björklund also took issue with what he called the “intellectual cultural left” for using the US as a hate object, stating that democracy would not have existed in the world after 1945 if it had not been for America.

His outburst of criticism against fellow parties continued when he singled out the Greens for demanding that households should look towards small-scale local farmers for fresh food produce.

“The Green Party’s attitude to trade is directly hostile to developing countries,” he said.

Björklund also pointed towards a number of changes that he sees necessary to promote economic growth in Sweden and proposes a move to reduce taxes, beginning with the abolition of the the so-called temporary austerity levy (värnskatt).

Within enterprise, he wants to see improvements in employment law which affect small and medium-sized companies when having to down-size.

Story continues below…

Björklund concluded that he remains positive towards the future development of nuclear power both for the sake of the environment and for industry.

TT/Christine Demsteader (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

16:16 November 20, 2009 by Cmhiggins12

I think Sweden has gone so far left that they ended up on the right. Swedish liberals sound a lot like American republicans here (except for the Euro).
16:28 November 20, 2009 by Nemesis
They want lower taxes, developments in nuclear power production and for Sweden to adopt the euro as its currency.

I agree. I think I will vote for the, next election.

The sooner Sweden is in the Euro the better, the sooner i can do more business online with a lot less hassle.
16:39 November 20, 2009 by karex

But before voting for them, I would like to see more detailed proposals like, just how do they intend to reach these goals?
17:05 November 20, 2009 by jones2

'Liberal' has never really meant the same thing in Europe as it has in the US. In the US it's used loosely to describe any one who's a Democrat or generally left of centre. In Europe, a liberal is centrist, usually slightly to the right. The Swedish liberals have always been right of centre.
20:10 November 20, 2009 by abrakadabra
what are their real basis though?
23:56 November 20, 2009 by BWake

More particularly, liberal in the USA has been co-opted by the big-government factions from its original meaning.

The original John Stuart Mill liberal was in favor of as much individual freedom as practical. They were not stateists by any means.

The group in the USA most nearly like the classical liberal are not called Libertarians. They have a problem with their own lunatic fringe taking their principles to logical extremes.
00:26 November 21, 2009 by JoeSwede
Finally some sane proposals.

When was the temporary austerity levy (värnskatt) initiated?
01:20 November 21, 2009 by 2394040
USA deja vu. Take from the poor and give to the rich. Is slowly destroying the American middle-class. The super-rich are doing quite well. Sweden's embracing this political philosophy will bring Sweden to economic disaster.

It takes money to provide what a nation needs for its people, and taxes are the only way to provide it. Don't expect the Swedish upper classes to provide it. They are too busy embracing the China ideal: Bring back slavery!
02:59 November 21, 2009 by mkvgtired
You have to applaud them for at least trying. As Milton Friedman says, "Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program". It is much more difficult to end a government program than to initiate one.
08:34 November 21, 2009 by Rick Methven
I do all my business in Euro's and loose out all the time on the exchange to Kronor so I support FP on the Euro.

However I take exception to some of his other comments

"Björklund also took issue with what he called the "intellectual cultural left" for using the US as a hate object, stating that democracy would not have existed in the world after 1945 if it had not been for America."

Firstly it was not the "intellectual cultural left" that turned the US into a hate object, George W Bush managed that without any outside help.

Are we supposed to believe that America is the protector of democracy? and that Britain, France and all the other countries that fought the 1939-1945 war (not the American 1941-1945 war) had no part to play.

This guy is a gung ho military man who, in 2002, as first deputy chairman of his party, Björklund expressed his support for the coming U.S. invasion of Iraq and urged for Swedish participation in the multinational coalition.

Re his attack on the Greens for promoting local produce, he seems to want local agriculture to disappear in favour of developing countries. Get real
16:09 November 21, 2009 by karex

Taxes are not the only way to provide what a nation needs for its people, at least not exclusively. There are other models out there working just fine without strangling the hell out of the working class and without creäting a modern slave class either. Besides, I don't see the outstanding services which our extremely high taxes are supposed to be offering. Other countries provide better services at substantially lower taxes.

That's why I'm interested in seeing just how they propose to achieve their proposals. Talking is easy, the catch comes when they have to come down to getting the work done.
18:07 November 21, 2009 by wxman
"Liberals call for lower taxes at party congress". You're more likely to see the headline, "Martians have landed in Times Square" in the U.S.
21:11 November 21, 2009 by diegoveggie
what about lowering the politicians' salary? making government more efficient? what about drug/alcohol tests on politicians? why should these people have secretaries, personal assistants, drivers, etc on us?

i do like the idea of paying less taxes, but i love the idea of a smaller more efficient government, too. ran by real honest people, not by grey uneventful people.

as a small business owner, high taxes definitely hurt growth thus making impossible to offer more jobs.
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