Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida and Europe, especially the UK and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura. Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

More on President Obama's historic trip to Sweden, and sharing some cold hard facts, anecdotes and lessons learned re Sverige; #obamainsweden, @Swedense, @CBildt, @AnnelieGregor, @hannawagenius, @davidlinden1

Joint statement by Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt and President Barack Obama: http://www.regeringen.se/sb/d/16999/a/222806

More official photos! http://www.regeringen.se/sb/d/17736

SVT's photo gallery of Wednesday's events: 

SvD's account of Thursday morning's events so far:

Nima Sanandaji is spot-on in highlighting what so many others ignore, whether consciously or accidentally. There were unique factors present in Sweden that allowed a certain sort of culture and ethos to develop and flourish that were NOT possible in countries where transportation and social mobility was far better and where larger centers of industrialization could lure larger numbers of rural residents.

In rural areas, especially during the many months of very cold weather, you absolutely needed to be able to trust and depend upon your neighbor, even if they were located quite a distance from you. Self-reliance and the bond of community, things so very much absent in current South Florida, with the predictable results we can see all around us:  
Sweden’s phenomenal growth can, besides business friendly policies, has much to do with the country’s unique history. Nordic countries were for a long period dominated by independent farmers who had great incentives to work hard in order to survive in the harsh and cold climate. The populations in these homogenous countries not only adapted very strong ethics relating to work and responsibility, but their culture also became characterized by social cohesion and high levels of trust.


Joel Kotkin correctly identifies another central aspect of what has made Sweden what it is and has made the areas of the U.S. that Swedish emigrants settled in more successful than others: 

Scandinavia's greatest strength may lie in its least political correct asset: its Nordic culture. Scandinavians' traditional interest in education, hard work and good governance serves them well both at home and abroad. It's not socialism that is primarily responsible.
After all, America's Scandinavians, although largely the descendents of poor immigrants also are pretty successful, earning more on average than their counterparts back home. 



One of the differences I've observed first-hand between American and Swedish women who are interested in politics and foreign policy is that smart, funny and attractive women in Sweden who are interested in those areas aren't as snobbish or smugly elitist as Americans, like to talk more frequently and passionately about big ideas like freedom and liberty and NOT about how they became vegans, don't seek to win arguments based on painting themselves as victims of "society," don't talk incessantly about yoga, pilates or their career, but have no problem in making public their love for the occasional fast food snacks. 
Par exemple, Hanna Wageniushttp://missbesserwisser.blogspot.com/

Nothing to do with Obama visit but I find this CUF video of hers droll and amusing:

Puss och kram på dig!





For someone like me who is a longtime recycling enthusiast, one of the best things about Sweden is the average person's commitment to keeping the city and nature free of debris. 
You pay a few SEK for products packaged in recyclable plastic or aluminum, like sodas, at both stores and from vendors, but get your money back via self-serve machines when you recycle at stores. 
All of this gives people a real  financial incentive to return items to stores, as well as for others to pick-up any you see lying on roads or in parks and get that money, which is one of the reasons that Stockholm is SO CLEAN!

Though I'm a committed meat-eater, especially when it comes to pizza, this actually looks good enough to try next time I'm in Stockholm, at Kungstensgatan 62.

Anyone wanting an accurate account of the problem in Sweden of the lack of successful Muslim assimilation in Europe ought to read my post of September 17, 2012 titled, re Fouad Ajami's Washington Post essay: Why is the Muslim world so easily offended?; What Muslim "moderates"?; Målmo as the European canary-in-the-coal-mine doesn't auger well for the success of Muslim "moderates" or assimilation efforts; #MUSLIMRAGE

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Me in the Summer of 2016

Me in the Summer of 2016
Above, me in June, pre-recent haircut, near acres and acres of orange groves off Scenic U.S. #17 in Frostproof, FL, while visiting hot/humid Central Florida, which I'm convinced is where heat/humidity goes in the Summer to get away from it all... The oppressive heat & humidity there is literally everywhere you go. :-(

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation
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North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers

North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers
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