Wednesday, 1 September 2010
At first glance, Swedish politics can be a bit confusing. Unlike the UK, or the USA, there are 7 major parties all vying for the voters. You'd think with 7 parties, it'd be easy to decide who to vote for. But it isn't. Apart from the far left and the far right, all the other parties seem very similar.
This time round, however, the parties have tried to make it easier for us by forming two blocs: the Alliance to the right, and the Red-Greens to the left. Two concrete blocs to choose from when we are standing in the polling station on September 19th.
Or at least that's the theory. The trouble is that both blocs are making the same election promises. More money to pensioners. Better schools. Better healthcare. More jobs.
The forming of the two blocs has made the decision even more difficult, and in the end it may become simply a choice between the far left or the far right.
To get clarity, I decided to ask some Swedes what the main ideological difference is between the two blocs. And surprisingly, they couldn't really tell me. Lots of people couldn't tell any difference at all. Some people made a brave attempt to explain. I heard things such as,
'one side wants to reduce tax by 1%, the other wants to increase tax by 1%
'one side believes in benefits, the other in jobs'
'one side wants to put more money than the other into the public sector'
None the clearer, I will have to chew over my options. Before election day, I'll decide. Like millions of other voters. And a new government will be chosen.
And we'll probably notice very little difference.