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. Photo in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A, September 2008; March 2018 photo below of North Beach, looking left-to-right, looking north, HYDE Condominium, Etaru Japanese Robatayaki restaurant, and Hollywood Beach in the distance, with umbrellas. All photos by me, © Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

In Sweden, Opposition Leader Anna Kinberg Batra has brought some much-needed fresh air and common sense into the public debate about civic responsibilities of migrants and newcomers to assimilate into Swedish society. #Almadalen

Anna Kinberg Batra (@kinbergbatra)

In Sweden, Opposition leader Anna Kinberg Batra has brought some much-needed fresh air and common sense into the public debate about civic responsibilities of migrants and newcomers to assimilate into Swedish society. #Almadalen
* Updated on July 20, 2016, see bottom!

Even as we've recently learned to our dismay that the Democratic Party in the U.S. is now prepared to abandon its longtime policy of emphasizing that newcomers to the U.S. must, of course, learn to be able to communicate in English, Anna Kinberg Batra, the leader of the Swedish Moderate Party, as well as the leader of the Swedish opposition, has publicly reiterated the need for all migrants and newcomers to Sweden to actually learn Swedish, or be prepared to suffer meaningful penalties as a result.

Which is to say, that perhaps the bad old days of countless government officials, patronizing academic elites and members of the news media consciously looking the other way when some migrants to Sweden just went thru the motions, and society was forced into pretending that all migrants were really doing the right thing, and that the problem of them isolating themselves wasn't real or have long-term negative consequences for Swedish society -besides causing great personal offense to millions of Swedish citizens paying the hefty freight for newcomers' housing and education- may finally be coming to an end.
That is, if Kinberg Batra becomes Prime Minister, and can institute some much-needed and long-overdue policy changes. 

Anna Kinberg Batra spoke for many frustrated and open-minded people I know and respect in Sweden when she spoke at length at a press conference today at Almadalen, Visby, about what sorts of changes she wanted to see.
Stating that there's nothing wrong in believing that there is, indeed, something known as "Swedish values," she made this point clear by emphasizing that besides the numerous personal rights and opportunities that come with being a legal resident or citizen in Sweden, there were also personal & social civic responsibilities attached to being able to live and work legally in Sweden as well.

”Man ska inte kunna skolka sig in i Sverige” -One should not be truant in Sweden- said @KinbergBatra, and who could plausibly argue with this bit of self-evident common sense? 

The job is the first important key to integration. Language is the other, she said.

She also said that it was naive to believe that the migrant situation in Sweden, with its attendant costs and chaos, were over for good. 
Again, directly at variance with what many powerful special interest groups and non-profits in Sweden want the people of Sweden to believe is the case, lest they ask for more accountability in an area that has seen so many financial/oversight scandals the past two years.

When it comes to government benefits, Kinberg Batra "repeated previous demands that a ceiling should be introduced so that newcomers can not get more in income support and establishment of compensation than what they can get by working."
Again, common sense, but then that is exactly what has been in such short supply in Sweden for many years in the view of many observers, including your faithful blogger.
You can love Sweden but acknowledge that its longstanding problems are not going to solve themselves.

My friends in Sweden are, it goes without saying, VERY pleased to hear Kinberg Batra say these things publicly and draw a meaningful distinction with other politicians and political parties on this issue, as their enthusiastic emails to me have made clear since she gave this talk.

A photo posted by Anna Kinberg Batra (@kinbergbatra) on

Update of July 20, 2016:
Since I first wrote and posted the blog post above, I have discovered a new tweet from Anna Kinberg Batra herself that has a helpful link to her comments, plus a video of the entire speech:

Anna KinbergBatrastaliAlmedalen: Plan förettstarkareSverige| NyaModeraternahttps://t.co/vhvzATihSE
— Anna KinbergBatra(@KinbergBatra) July">https://twitter.com/KinbergBatra/status/752384238956216320">July 11, 2016
You can find those comments on the Moderaterna party website at

Anna Kinberg Batras Almedalstal

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#HollywoodFL based photographer/entrepreneur Esther Chuang

#HOLLYWOODFL based photographer and entrepreneur Esther Chuang with Hollywood Mayor-elect Josh Levy
Thumbs up! What a night! #HOLLYWOODFL based photographer and entrepreneur Esther Chuang with a very elated Hollywood Mayor-elect Josh Levy at his Victory Party, held at Leo Anato's Atelier3/AT3 on Harrison Street & S. 19th Avenue, Hollywood. AT3's great environment and the amazing variety of food prepared by chef Kevin Dreifuss, former owner/chef of now-closed ENDS MEAT restaurant, was SUPERB! November 8, 2016 Esther Chuang, Morro Dois Irmãos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2015
Above, perhaps my most-favorite photo ever of Esther, which is really saying something considering the THOUSANDS that I've actually seen of her, from all over the world. But despite the fact that you can't actually see it here, trust me, her amazing smile and inner and external beauty are there. This photo is an even more amazing achievement when you know the backstory of what it took for Esther to get to the top of the mountain, since it's NOT for the faint of heart. Next time you see her, ask her about that! Morro Dois Irmãos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on her birthday, July 10, 2015. That's the Christ The Redeemer statue atop Mount Corcovado way out in the horizon on the top of another mountain, to the left of her head. To the right is the world famous beach of Ipanema and to the left is the equally famous beach of Copacabana. In case you forgot what the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio looks like, up close, plus the Amazon area of Brazil that Esther grew up near in Manaus, here's another Brazilian beauty to connect-the-dots for you: Gisele Bündchen, aka @Gisele.

Abençoado por Deus e bonito por natureza!✨ ������

A post shared by Gisele Bündchen (@gisele) on

A floresta Amazônica tem um papel fundamental no equilíbrio do clima na Terra e, portanto, na vida de cada um de nós. Nos últimos anos a proteção diminuiu e o desmatamento aumentou drasticamente. E o que já era ruim, pode ficar ainda pior. Se as medidas que o governo vem tomando não forem vetadas, nosso futuro estará ameaçado. Diga NÃO à diminuição da proteção da Floresta do Jamanxim! Diga NÃO à exploração de minério no coração da floresta! #TodosPelaAmazônia #342Amazonia #TodosPelaAmazonia Assine a petição: link na bio. ������✨���� The Amazon Rainforest plays a key role in balancing the climate on the Earth and therefore in each of our lives. In recent years, protection has decreased and deforestation has increased sharply. And what was already bad can get even worse. If the measures that the government has been taking are not vetoed, our future will be threatened. Say NO to the reduction of the Jamanxim Forest´s protection! Say NO to ore mining in the heart of the Forest! #togetherfortheAmazon

A post shared by Gisele Bündchen (@gisele) on