What ailes the EU?

The latest Eubarometer is out that came in December 2009. I remain fascinated over the drastic interest in the environment by Sweden. A full 20%, top in the EU27, think the environment is important compared with a 4% interest for EU27. The data for EU27:Sweden are as follows:

Unemployment 51%:63%
Economic situation 40%:30%
Crime 19%:14%
Rising prices/Inflation 19%:2%
Health Care system 14%:26%
Immigration 9%:9%
Pensions 9%:6%
Taxation 8%:3%
The Educational system 7%:16%
Housing 5%:3%
Terrorism 4%:1%
The Environment 4%:20%
Energy 3%:6%
Defence/Foreign Affairs 2%:1%

Unemployment has gone up from 26% to 49% in the last Eubarometer to 51% in this one and is the most talked about issue in the Swedish election debate that is starting up. The Alliance claims that it has become the same as prior to the last election 2006 due to good management whereas the Red-Greens talk about causation of unemployment due to erroneous politics which seems to be wrong.

Taxation, Rising Prices, Housing, Terrorism and Foreign Affairs are very unimportant in Sweden. I find this particularly interesting since taxation is the sole major difference between the two voting blocks for the election in September. Are we in effect moving towards a one-party system?

The low interest in Terrorism and Foreign Affairs show very well in the blogging activity on the subjects which are dismal. In the US, on the contrary, they are very concerned that some lunatic would carry aboard a nuclear bomb. Imposing freedom on people has its price. The elites ruling the EU, however, must be much more engaged in these matters than the average person answering the poll. There has been some writings about the new High Representative, Lady Ashton and her large staff, added as a consequence after the Lisbon Treaty of 2009. Only 2% of people are interested in what she does.

The high importance given to Crime worries me, although it is on a lowering trend. Denmark is worth noting, since we are neighbors. 39% of Danes think Crime is important versus 14% for Swedes and 19% for all the EU27 members.

I have listed the environment country by country before but it has changed somewhat so I list it again. Swedes are infatuated with the environment as could be seen in the media prior to the COP15 conference. Data were collected October, November 2009. Sweden, France and Finland all have a high proportion of their electricity produced by nuclear power. Denmark has a high proportion of electricity from wind power.

Sweden 20%
Denmark 16%
France 10%
Malta 8%
The Netherlands, Finland 7%
The Rest 5% or below

According to my humble opinion it must be considered a problem that so few people are concerned about their political surroundings. It is going to make it difficult to build an EU with a defined place in the world.

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