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Modern Swedes face up to the monarchy paradox

Peter Vinthagen Simpson · 18 Jun 2010, 12:05

Published: 18 Jun 2010 12:05 GMT+02:00

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In a popular Sveriges Television series first broadcast in 2006, charismatic comic and linguist Fredrik Lindström prompted a period of national introspection when he posed the question - Is Sweden the most modern country in the world? - while arguing that Swedes bestride a split mentality of complacency and insecurity.

The Swedish monarchy has long been beyond the pale of criticism in Sweden, at least for foreigners. It is up there with the Systembolaget state monopoly liquour stores and Swedish strawberries – you just don't go there.

When the engagement of Crown Princess Victoria and commoner Daniel Westling was announced last year it was widely predicted to provide a timely boost for the royal family. But as the world's press descends on Stockholm for the wedding several polls indicate a waning support for the institution of the monarchy. Could the paradox outlined in Lindström's programme provide a clue as to why?

While the machinations of the Swedish royals play out on the society pages; while the young, photogenic royal offspring pursue worthy deeds spruced up with a few modest foreign holidays; and while folk-dress clad princesses beam at largely-ignored national day celebrations, the existence of a constitutional monarchy remains just part of the furniture and uncontroversial, and it remains a national affair.

But when foreign eyes turn to Sweden, as they have done this week, the insecurity identified by Lindström is brutally exposed, and what has been regarded by many as ”The World's Most Modern Monarchy”, becomes just another undemocratic anachronism.

In short "The World's Most Modern Country" cares what supposedly less modern countries think.

New evidence of this emerged only this week with the widespread reporting of a New York Times article proclaiming that ”Swedish Fathers Can Have it All”. Sweden is rightly proud of its family policy record, but like anyone else it is always nice to hear outsiders confirm what has always been known.

Many Stockholmers have meanwhile been trying to cash in by renting out their apartments for the week of the royal wedding. There is no doubt a purely financial motive for this, but for many this is chance to aloofly announce their departure – a display of disdain for the pomp, the ceremony, and the displays of inherited wealth and title that a royal wedding by definition displays.

Story continues below…

The citizens of "The World's Most Modern Country" might be both equally complacent and insecure, Lindström argued, but we are also wedded to rationalism.

As the media hype reaches its exalted crescendo, Swedes are being forced to take a stand on the issue and many it seems are finding that when pushed they can't stand up for the decidedly unmodern values that all monarchies, constitutional or otherwise, represent; as well as the decidedly irrational arguments used to defend them.

There are of course several rational arguments for defending a constitutional monarchy – the relative cost of a president, foreign trade, PR and so on – but when the Bernadotte dynasty is displayed, albeit fleetingly, as an ostentatious symbol of national pride and celebration, "The World's Most Modern People" start to shift uncomfortably in their seats.

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

22:33 June 18, 2010 by locaxy
Most excellent analysis!

Allow me to add that Sweden being what it is despite being a monarchy, is the main argument used by autocratic royal regimes. For the sake of democracy worldwide, I humbly ask Swedish citizens to take a stand on the issue. If the Swedish monarchy was to be removed, I can guarantee that more than a handful of absolutist regimes will lose their legitimacy and be naturally forced to transition towards more democracy.

Please Sweden, snap out of this cognitive dissonance towards relics of feodalism and get rid of this obsolete institution. If not for yourself, then for all the political prisoners and oppressed people living under autocratic monarchies. The Third World needs that much more than the billions you hand out. Thank you.
02:24 June 19, 2010 by manrush
Okay, here's a quiz for you:

Think about these following nations










New Zealand


What do all these liberal democracies have with each other?
02:57 June 19, 2010 by repat_xpat
There is much to dislike about Sweden and the princess (especially that huge chin). But there is nothing wrong with patriotism and how the Swedish royalty inspires it. The Swedish people love their country and their royalty. This is an attribute, not a fault. The US could learn something about patriotism from the Swedes!
03:33 June 19, 2010 by Sherian Elizabeth

What in the he.. did the crown princess do to you for you make such nasty mean comments? What does her chin have to do with anything? Are you such a -perfect human- being without any physical flaws? There is NOT one person in this world that is perfect in anyway shape or form. What do you dislike about Sweden except it's royalty, heritage, history? I read a lot of history books on countries around the world and have read many many books on the history of Sweden, Denmark and Norway. The people seems to me as I speak for myself, a very strong and proud of who they are and where they come from. I live in the USA and I can tell you that having to elect a head of state every 4 years is really gruelling. These idiots that run for office are a bunch of loose cannons and none of them are with a dime...and they spend tens of millions of dollars to get elected. A hundred times more then the royal wedding cost and I have to pay for that. I am only 1 vote and believe me, one vote counts for nothing. Our leaders, congress and government officials are out for themselves and their friends only.

There is one thing that I will agree with you on, there is no patriotism in this country and I think this has a lot to do with the fact that here we all relate to our heritage which comes from other countries. I might have been born and raised here but my heritage is Irish and Scotish.. I always tell my friends and it makes for some very heated discussions, that I love the IDEA of American but I HATE what has become of my country. I just learn to live with it as I said one vote doesn't count.
04:48 June 19, 2010 by repat_xpat
@Sherian, You could learn a lot from Swede's about loving the country they live in. I believe that America is a much better country, not that Sweden is bad. But many of my fellow American's, like you, don't celebrate this truth. Instead you berate the greatest country on earth. I guess that is American too -- Freedom of speech. Glad you have it, but I don't share your view. In any case, you must admit that that huge chin is something to be admired. Jay Leno's got nothing on the princess.
05:12 June 19, 2010 by Sherian Elizabeth

I don't like or think that America is the greatest country on earth and I don't think it should be labled as such. I am sure that your freedom of speech is not taken away from you in Sweden. My Swedish friends would disagree with you. As for the royals, it's a matter of being proud of your heritage for that is what they represent. As I said I LOVE the idea of America but I sure hate what it's become. In traveling around the world, I find being an American is something people in other countries look down on, such as: why do Americans hate to wait in line in a foreign country to enter some place of interest when they wiat in line here for mcdonald's? I have been on many trips to Europe with Americans and am ashamed of their arragonce and attitude that they think they are better then everyone else because they are Americans. This makes me ashamed of them. I don't want to go to other countries to see mcdonald's, wendy's, sears, or any other label that comes from here. I want to see the history and the real Swedish country and it's people if I could go to Sweden. I believe that each and every country has it's good and bad. To me Sweden seems to have more good then bad. I am glad that I am a broad minded person who likes to learn about the world from other people around the world. that is where I get my attitude and ideas about Sweden. Because I have traveled a lot and seen many places, that is why I don't think or like the idea the America is the greatest country on earth. Sometimes the chip on our should about who we think we are, should be knocked off so that we could have more humality.

What is with you and the way Victoria looks? What does your chin look like?
08:17 June 19, 2010 by M Krishnamachary
Royals are like the heads of family. Here the family is the entire nation of Sweden. Electted legislators actually rule the country in the name of the Royal family. Swedish democracy is prosperous and is worth emulating by all even if they are not headed by royals.

When Royals mess up things as the ones in Nepal did, they were unceremoniouly removed by popular will. The British monarchy is one which is flourishing and is loveable. Look at Thailand. Governments, even when dominated by the military, are subservient to the Royal family because Royals do not interfere.

As opposed to the above, there are those democracies, so called, whose heads of governments are worse than dictators and distrusted entities. So, there need be no demur in the case of Sweden.
22:33 June 19, 2010 by asteriks
Buahaha, it is quite normal to like people with whom you grew up, there is nothing normal to like parasites who survived revolutions in last 4 centuries and continue to live like in feudalism. As I remember, somewhere was published that wedding will be paid from budget but not from pocket of princess (11 million dollars!), while ordinary people pay from their pocket when their daughter marriage with someone. Enough about equality of citizens in Sweden. Some citizens enjoy privileges from primitive period called feudalism. Obviously patriotism make people blind, better to study politics and to understand what's happen around them. If I dislike government/president/king in my country, I can still fight for living in better society.
00:32 June 20, 2010 by Michaelmack
The British monarchy is neither flourishing nor lovable, and is unlikely to survive the present incumbent.

17:18 June 20, 2010 by GLO
The Swedish Royals are a wonderful family. This only speaks well for your country. Well done Sweden, I LOVE your country DO NOT CHANGE. Well, you could shut the bridge, kick out all fast food, Stop All Open Borders. Keep your money, your wonderful Swedish Language, other than that.... Perfect....
17:48 June 20, 2010 by cogito
@Sherian Elizabeth #6

I think you should stop traveling. Your rant is the sort of incoherent babble that gives Americans a bad name. Please try to make sense.
20:23 June 20, 2010 by glamelixir

two questions 1- do you really think Swedes are patriotic? hahaha (all Swedes I know would deny that and I actually don't see any patriotism at all beyond loving a summer stuga)

2- If there is to be so, do you really think that this is inspired by the Royal house? I can make a huge list of more patriotic countries that have actually never had one. so I can't really see that connection you are making.

I enjoy reading the comments on these threads, and I am surprised to find that most suporters are often living abroad. I suggest that they should send their donations to all of us who didn't want to support the royal wedding with our taxes, so they can pay for it as they seem so happy and enthusiastic about it.

@GLO, when you state that the Swedish Royals are a wonderful family, what exactly comes into your analysis? do you personally know them?

I mean, don't get me wrong, maybe they are wonderful people, but they are not quite good at setting a good example.

Victoria's anorexia and breaking rules and traditions in this wedding.

Madelaine's party, nightclub, alcoholic, overspending Lindsey Lohan's lifestyle.

The Queen serious dismorphia issues and the king missfortunate support for a dictatorship among other of his careless speeches... I really hope we would have some thing better for export hahaha. GOD BLESS ABBA AND BJORN BORG!
16:06 June 21, 2010 by Henckel
I generally look favorably upon monarchy, as a conservative, but many of the criticisms of the institution are legitimate.
18:51 June 21, 2010 by stateohio905
I love monarchy, but not to pay for it.. Let keep them on their own expense. It was ridiculous to look at all of them in diamonds ordinary people paid for. And for what, absolutely nothing....are we stupid or ...
00:48 June 22, 2010 by More than kangaroos and koalas
Hi. I agree with the above comments about the expense of monarchy being very large. I also handed out 'how-to-vote' cards for republicans when Australia considered (but chose not to become) abolishing the Queen of England, as head of state in Australia, in 1999.

However, may I suggest that monarchy does offer a precious constitutional safeguard against tyranny, so far as it insists that those with political power exercise that power on behalf and for someone else. Those with supreme power are not also sovereign.

Also, particularly in a country like Sweden that is the epitome of equality, it seems important to have the pleasures of admiration, and to have people for pop culture to admire other than the Hollywood stars. If ordinary people are not allowed to admire kings and queens, they often end up admiring 'gang-stars' and porn stars.

15:21 June 22, 2010 by nomoremonarchy
The problem with "the rational argument" about PR is that it is frightening that someone use that as an argument against a more democratic reform. If Sweden hypothetically gets "good PR" from not having an elected parliament, maybe we should dissolve that too?

And to me as a Swede, I feel ashamed that something like the royal monarchy is suppose to represent me as a Swede abroad. No, of course I want to be able to choose who is suppose to represent me. At least a position should be open to anyone, not inherited by one single family. The whole thing really sickens me.
16:43 June 22, 2010 by Åskar
To add to what glamelixir #12 wrote. The only Swedes that take the word patriot in their mouths are the neonazis.
08:38 June 23, 2010 by bheatrix
the only people i know in sweden that dislikes the monarki, are the low class socialist left wing young people, or the left wing generated media, the 69 left wing movement has control of the media that is why it seems that swedes dislikes monarchy. but in fact its not true.

dont trust the media,
19:17 June 23, 2010 by vms
Sweden's royals seem to be better than average at their undemanding jobs, and they're relatively inexpensive. But consider that the next heir apparent will be the child of a pleasant enough but not very intellectually gifted young woman, and the ex-"trainer" who helped her through a spot of bulimia. Parliament may have to amend the law of succession again.

As the Brits know all too well, the monarchy looks good only as long as you don't look too closely.
00:46 June 24, 2010 by glamelixir

Well... it wouldn' t be sooo different from out actual king, eller? haha ;)


How old are you? Your generalized prejudicial comment is only worth if you are not older than 16 years old. You need to either meet more people or open the spectre of cathegories, there is more to life than black and white. Things are not left - poor right- rich. For your information right handed countries have the biggest gap between rich and poor and the rich are only a minority... so...

just evolved enough to leave monarchy in the medieval times!!!

Sorry people for this Political economy for dummies, but people should think twice before posting some things....
08:44 June 24, 2010 by nomoremonarchy
bheatrix: I am politically somewhere in the middle. Im sorry, but it is always dangerous to make such an assumption. I am against the monarchy simply because its a non-democratic institution. And please, bring an argument to the debate instead of dismissing something because you have a picture in your mind of what people who dont like monarchy.
05:25 June 25, 2010 by Brent C. Dickerson
Isn't it rather archaic and superfluous to worry about the monarchy, rather like the Taliban in Afghanistan worrying about those ancient statues of Buddha which they ultimately destroyed? It's one thing if you have an autocratic repressive monarch who controls the government, quite another to have a representative figure called the monarch who is essentially a ceremonial figurehead . . . but who represents a nation's heritage. By the same logic: Why not destroy the Wasa because it doesn't represent modern shipmaking? Why spend taxpayer money on maintaining cultural sites, museums, the Arts, when they're about nothing but the past or are mere representatives of past aesthetics? Isn't it actually the anti-monarchists who are stuck in a mediaeval mind-set, supposing that success with "down with the king" will provide something of value? Let nations preserve their cultural icons; as I recall reading the locals saying when those Buddhas were destroyed, "Now we have nothing."
14:21 June 25, 2010 by nomoremonarchy
Brent C. Dickerson

as long as there is someone inherriting their position its not democratic. You want to know why I worry about the current system?

Someone is suppose to represent me and the rest of the people of Sweden abroad. As a citizen I haven not been able to choose that person. The current system also creates a fairy tale picture in peoples minds about the king or queen. This makes it hard for media to report about what this institution in a serious way, which is a serious vioalation against democracy. Before the recent wedding the report from media has not been critical towards the system in any sense, the media has only cretaed an aura around the wedding with commercial jingles suspissicously reminding about Disney.

And another problem: if you dont like the person stpping into the position in the future, you have no chance to vote that person off. It takes time to abolish the monarchy system, maybe 8 years, which is not very democratic. A president can be voted off immediattelly... Its in the constituution, so there are certain rules that has to be fulfilled before a change in the system can be made.
20:38 June 25, 2010 by Lena_i_USA
I moved from Sweden 9 years ago. Many of my friends back there are against having a monarchy. While my mother and her generation were all glued to the TV to watch the wedding.

I think it was terrible that the Swedish people had to pay for the wedding when so many are without a job these days! It might not sound like a lot of money but you have to consider that Sweden only has about 9 million people, that is a lot of money per tax payer.

I don't know how much money the royal family gets every year, but it's a lot more than the many old people in Sweden who barely gets any pension, even though they were working hard for many years.

Sweden already has a prime minister, why have a king that doesn't really do anything for the country, except cost money.

A president and prime minister are elected by the people/us and if they don't do a good job we can get rid off them. The royal family will still be there in a hundred years..
17:48 June 26, 2010 by cogito

This is the perfect expression of the loony logic of those supporting monarchy:


The royal parasites=ancient works of art.
09:53 June 27, 2010 by spongepaddy
@Lena_i_USA: You say "Sweden only has about 9 million people, that is a lot of money per tax payer. " No it isn't. The wedding cost in the region of 60 million crowns and that makes about 14 crowns each. Otherwise I agree with you, but get your facts straight or you will sound like an idiot.
01:29 June 28, 2010 by Ed Tracey
Even without abolishing the monarchy, opponents appear to have two reasonable requests:

(a) ending the requirement that the king and heirs remain a member of the Lutheran church, and (b) ending the requirement that all those in the line of succession seek clearance from the monarch and the government for their chosen spouse.

Both seem outdated in a democracy.
03:17 June 28, 2010 by Pittbull77
Sweden is a country with a rich an enviable history, culture, and society. It would be a shame, nay a disservice to this long tradition to simply abolish the monarchy. A further reduction of the monarchy to a more symbolic status, with a lesser economic draw on the nation as a whole, maybe a direction to pursue. The monarchy is more than an aspect of government; it is the embodiment of history and culture. Sweden is, in the end, a wealthy nation of educated and progressive people. Fourteen crowns a person is not unreasonable to celebrate not just a Royal wedding, but the continuity and history of the Nation as it is embodied in the future generation of the Monarchy. The Bernadotte family most certainly embodies this ideal. Swden's history should not be abandoned, but modernized and evolved into a working aspect of the modern nation. "For Sweden, With the Times...."
13:15 June 28, 2010 by bheatrix
the image in my mind of what people who dislike monarchy is:

jealous selfhating fools with no sense of love for their homeland, if this in case is sweden and you are a swede since several generations, if you are not, you should have no say at all in the question of changin anyhing as old as monarchy in Sweden.

i feel sorry for republicans. so full of hate and their idea of "democracy" is clearly delusional.
13:22 June 28, 2010 by nomoremonarchy

Youre picture of history is in my mind very romantized without attachment to reality.

You seem to claim monarchy is a something we should celebrate with its long and good history. Well, until only about 100 years ago the king was a dictator. During the dictatorship the royal family on multiple occassions stopped the spreading of the free word as it tried to stop the press from growing.

Traces from the undemocratic nature of a monarchy can still be found today. The position is inherrited from generation to generation and of course media has cretaed a romantized fairy tale picture of a royal family, most obviosly stated in the recent wedding which stops media from serious covering of the instituion, which otherwise is natural in a democratic country as Sweden is in many other aspects.

the king is claimed to have no political power, but, for example, the fact that he represents Sweden abroad makes me want to influence who that person is. The abscence of this fact in the current system is very undemocratic indeed.

excuse me, but what has the king and monarchy to do with if we as a people are educated and progressive????? A lot of those people have throughout history fought against monarchy and the only thing the monarchy "embodies" is non-democracy,

I should have the right as a citizen to influence who represents my country and this is a position everyone should have the possibility to reach, not denied in the constituition as it is today, the year of 2010 (!).

And regarding the economy. if it is true a royal family costs less than a president, is that an argument against a democratic reform? Should we abolish the elected parliament if it cost less money?
00:48 June 29, 2010 by Rockflower
So often the cost of monarchy is put up as a negative. If you had a president do you truly think that would cost nothing? In countries without a monarchy a head of state position is often filled by some ex politician and we know how they take care of them selves. Look to that great sink hole of money in Brussels, EU politicians live like princes believe me. The leading royals in a country work hard, they live in gilded cages but do not have the casual freedoms that most of us cherish. A monarch is more than political functionary, they are the keepers of the legend, the focus of the cultural history of a country. As someone else has written here, if they mess up, they are removed one way or another. A monarchy may not appear 'modern' but no one has invented anything better yet, in my opinion.

Why should they have this privilege when I don't? Life is unfair get used to it, I don't have fabulous looks, a operatic voice, great brain or outstanding athletic ability, as much as I should like . These are gifts given to a person, you have these innate talents or you do not. I was not born royal???? well I could always marry a prince I suppose if it was written in my fate!.
05:07 June 29, 2010 by Jimbo33
The intense rationality of Swedes is one of the nation's greatest blessings. But it call also be a bit of a curse because it creates self-denial when it comes to man's need for occasional dionysian beauty and celebration.

The royal wedding was expensive and ostentatious. Just as it such a grand occasion needed to be. THIS royal wedding was also one of the most utterly splendid, magnificent and uplifting things I've ever witnessed. From Benni Andersson's "Resting Blissfully In Your Arms", to the ravishing orbs of campanula and bluebells that decorated the palace waterside, to the sailors lining the ships saluting the royal barge, to the groom's heartfelt speech, it was an unforgettable day. Everyone responsible for its staging, and everyone who shared in the day, should be proud. Sweden should be proud. It was both great and touchingly human at the same time.

The first commentator wrote: "If the Swedish monarchy was to be removed, I can guarantee that more than a handful of absolutist regimes will lose their legitimacy" which is not only hilarious, but also says volumes about their missunderstanding of the workings of dictatorships. I doubt they would even notice, let alone it shake their pillars!

Modernism imposes a crushing rationality at the best of times, so it's important to recognise things beyond easy quantifying, and which add so much to the colour, meaning and humanity of national life, like the monarchy. Cynicism is the most corrosive and destructive disease of modern life. With the support of such a loving partner, Victoria will make a splendid constitutional monarch for Sweden. Long may she reign!
18:29 June 29, 2010 by nomoremonarchy

Are you a Swede yourself? I am, I love Sweden and its democracy which is often top rated in the economists index. That is why I want to abolish the last remains of the non-democracy, that is the monarchy. Im not self-hating either.

Why do you connect love for the country with the system we have? if you as an american wants to switch president, are you not american then? The supposed "tradition" with a king is in the past a dictatorship and today unnessecary remains of an undemocratic past and the institution itself is naturally non-democratic.

See my arguments above, why is my idea of democracy delusional? It feels kind of reasonable to argue that an inherrited position is not democratic. To me its a fundamental cornerstone for democracy. Why is an inherited position with uncritical covering of an instution from the TV media more democratic and less delusional?


Democracy is not a matter of cost, its a matter of principles. One of the kings duties is to reprsent his country abroad on different occassions. He certainly doesnt represent my values, why should I dont have the right to vote for another candidate on such an important position? Wouldn´t it be all better if you could vote for the current king as president, and i for another person? The majority of all peoples votes will than determine who is the rghtful chief of state in a civilised democratic way.


Is the monarch really doing a great job? I dont know cause a royal family is a perfect target for media to give their readers an aura of a happy fairy-tale and media is seldom critically towards the institution. isnt this a democratic problem since very other institution in Sweden is critically looked upon in media otherwise?

And excuse me, but why does every person in Sweden have to like the monarchy system? Youre calling it self-denial and seem to claim you just have to be happy about two people you dont know at all are getting married... The fact that you are trying to tell me what I have to believe is why this is a non-democratic institution. In a democracy things are not decided upon beforehand, but decided in fair and free elections. Why should this institution be an exception? I have hardly heard any good arguments to why the monarchy system is democratic. Please come with those instead of fairy tale stories with "how grand it was".
21:18 June 29, 2010 by glamelixir
@ bheatrix:

It is not even worth trying o have a grown up discussion with you... your arguments are totally empty and lacking total logic.

Please, grow up and express you passion for monarchy in a grown up way with arguments to support it that are not only a mix of words stating arbitrary opinions full of prejudices and generalizations....
04:48 June 30, 2010 by Jimbo33
The endless media questioning and introspection prior to the wedding reminded me of how I feel when I walk into endless blank white rooms in Swedish homes filled with spindly rational furniture: I sometimes want to scream: "You know, a bit of colour and joy won't kill you!"

"Is the monarch really doing a great job?" Yes, I think the King, Queen, and Victoria ARE. And even more importantly, I think the institution itself is. And apart from occasional grudging media acknowledgement of superficialities, I think the criticism is tiresomely endless. No institution or people are perfect, although some sectors in Sweden seem to demand it of the royal family and monarchy. Give them, and yourselves, a break.

The prevailing belief in Sweden that everything new is intrinsically good, by virtue of its being modern, is extraordinary. Ergo, the corrosive belief that anything old, such as the institution of monarchy is intrinsically flawed, and needs reform.
09:54 June 30, 2010 by nomoremonarchy

Why are they doing a good job? You only say they are, but give no reason to why. i have said that its hard for me to now, because the media is not critically towards it. Did you see the media coverage from TV before the wedding? It was full of only wishfullness for the wedding couple, but no criticism towardss it. Since most people watch tv, i think that media has the most influence on peoples opinions. The opinions reflecting the criticism towards monarchy is only found in a couple of writers in the papers, but, really nothing more.

Why cant we have an a election where peoples votes can decide who is the chief of state? You can vote for the king and I for another candidate? I dont really understand why the monarchy should be an exception in a democratic state.

And please dont mix together what people have in their homes and fashion with the political system (!) The king may represent you, but he DOESNT REPRESENT ME.

Again, why cant we have an election? The monarch is suppose to represent the swedish people, but clearly he doesnt represent everyone.Why are you trying to force your ideas on me instead of having an election regarding positions in a public institution? Our two competing ideas can than face a just judgement from THE PEOPLE. When the future president travels abroad we can both be sure of that a majority of people support him.

I dont really see how I have written that everything new is good (i love The Beatles...) But you seem to believe its good just because its old(seem, please explain if otherwise). You may think it was a happy wedding, but the only thing I saw was inherrited power manifested in the name of the entire Swedish people, although its closer than ever between the two sides.
04:22 July 2, 2010 by glamelixir

I admire your patience to explain all this to the nonsense monarchy lovers. I just don't have it.. I mean.. I don't know if it is age or what but I find it more and more difficult to "explain what 10 is to people that don't understand one and zero"

Their justifications and explanations are just empty, they sound like the american christians justifying things with jesus and faith.

Truth is the King screws every single media appearence and it is a shame to hear the things he says... he could, at least read a bit of history and socioeconomy to try to sound like he cares.

Tired of this... give me my tax money BACK! I want to donate it to welfare.
12:20 July 7, 2010 by Tim 2346
The Royal Family give Sweden an image out of proportion to her influence on the world stage. I can't tell you one politician's name but I can name the major Royals.

God save the King!
20:22 July 8, 2010 by Suresh Alvapillai
Now days, It has become as fusions that some one to criticize the government or the royals or the cultures. The habit must be changed.
15:03 July 14, 2010 by Juho M.
I have nothing against the Swedish royal family, and I am, as a tax payer, happy to contribute to their modest allowancies. I even trust the parliament to handle the question of how much to pay for a royal wedding.

There's one single aspect that I disliked, and that was the huge interest ordinary news papers and television invested in the wedding for weeks and months in advance. Remembering the previous royal wedding, that in 1976, i was boored and wondered about how the media industry has changed from reporting relevant news to irrelevant gossip.
09:13 July 15, 2010 by justagurlfromSeattle
@beheatrix.... your rant about the left is funny... considering your sentence struture... PS... I am a Lefty... and PROUD of it.... Where do you come from??? The US???? Right wingers in the US are not too good at sentence structure... :-)
17:15 July 17, 2010 by Jan#1
The person(s) who edit these articles has little respect for good people.

I have just subscribed to this newsletter but am now having second thoughts about the type of article written here. I am descended from Swedes and love Sweden in all respects but live in the USA by birth and choice.

The Swedish Royal family functions in TODAY'S world as ambassadors for the Swedes around the world, and does a splendid job. They are to be honored as such and not torn apart with criticism. I cannot get enough information on the recent wedding and all that this family does..

BRAVO BRAVO Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel !! May you have a long and happy marriage with many little ones to make your own life fulfilled !!
13:45 July 21, 2010 by nomoremonarchy

The problem is: what if somene doesnt like this system and dont appreciate that persons are inherriting their place? Why should I dont have the right to vote for another candidate. This is not about if the royal family as such, its about the undemocratic nature of the system.

The king and this system doesnt represent me. Why should I be forced into thinking he is a symbol for Sweden, when I dont think so? i want to fell I have influence on who is representing my country, is that too much to ask for? this smells a lot like "your either with us or not"-rethoric. I have nothing against if the people would VOTE for the current kingas chief of state in a free election.
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Sweden's migration minister Morgan Johansson. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Sweden received 70 percent fewer requests for asylum in the period between January and September 2016 than it did during the same time last year, the country’s justice and migration minister Morgan Johansson has revealed.

The unique story of Stockholm's floating libraries
The Stockholm archipelago book boat. Photo: Roger Hill.

Writer Roger Hill details his journeys on the boats that carry books over Stockholm's waterways and to its most remote places.

Refugee crisis
Second Stockholm asylum centre fire in a week
The new incident follows a similar fire in Fagersjö last week (pictured). Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police suspect arson in the blaze, as well as a similar incident which occurred last Sunday.

More misery for Ericsson as losses pile up
Ericsson interim CEO Jan Frykhammar presenting its third quarter results. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

The bad news just keeps coming from the Swedish telecoms giant.

Facebook 'sorry' for removing Swedish cancer video
A computer displaying Facebook's landing page. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

The social media giant had censored a video explaining how women should check for suspicious lumps in their breasts.

Watch this amazing footage of Sweden’s landscapes
A still from the aerial footage of Sweden. Photo: Nate Summer-Cook

The spectacular drone footage captures both Sweden's south and the opposite extreme, thousands of kilometres north.

Sweden could be allowed to keep border controls: EU
Police ID checks at Hyllie station in southern Sweden. Photo: Stig-Åke Jönsson/TT

Sweden could be allowed to keep ID controls on its border with Denmark beyond the current end date of November, following discussions among EU leaders in Brussels last night.

Why women in Sweden will work for free by November
File photo of a woman working in a Swedish office. Photo: Anders Willund/TT

A new study into the gender pay gap suggests Sweden still has some work to do.

Look familiar? Meet your jawbone's ancestor
Thank God for evolution, eh?

There's something fishy about the human jawbone – it has its origins in the placodermi, a jowly species of fish that lived 400 million years ago, Swedish and Chinese researchers say.

Isis claims unremarked arson attack in Malmö
The arson attack took place on Norra Grängesbergsgatan in Malmö. File photo: Emil Langvad/TT

An arson attack in Malmö that caused only minor damage and was barely reported in the media has been claimed by terror group Isis.

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Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
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Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
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Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

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