Monday, September 18, 2006

Moderates take over

So Swedes dumped the Social Democrats and brought in the moderates.

With almost all the votes counted by 11 p.m., three hours after the polls closed, the right-of-center coalition led by the leader of the Moderate Party, Fredrik Reinfeldt, had taken 48.1 percent of the vote, compared with 46.2 percent for the Social Democrats and their left-of-center allies.
Mr. Reinfeldt claims it was those high unemployment rates.
Mr. Reinfeldt successfully made unemployment a major issue in the campaign. By most measures, Sweden is thriving economically: the economy is growing this year at a projected annual rate of 4.1 percent, and the official unemployment rate is 5.7 percent.
But with its generous social services and high unemployment benefits, Mr. Reinfeldt argues, it has encouraged a vast swath of people to fall out of the labor market, a particularly acute problem with an aging population. Taking into account the number of working-age people who are not working or in school — including early retirees, people in job training and those on long-term disability — the unemployment figure is close to 21 percent, he says.

Should be interesting to see what happens.
BTW, the official unemployment numbers from 2004 don't seem too bad:

Education level Less than HS HS College
Unemployment rate
US 9.9% 6.1% 3.4%
Sweden 6.1% 5.2% 3.9%

3 comments:

g said...

how did the feminist party do?

boredoom said...

I'm buy the right-wing argument that the official numbers are bogus, because of the educational programs the government uses to keep people off the job market. As in so many other European countries, the Swedish job market is designed to protect those who have jobs, not create new jobs for those who don't have any.

liberal elite said...

I'm buy the right-wing argument that the official numbers are bogus, because of the educational programs the government uses to keep people off the job market.

Interestingly, that argument is made about the US unemployment numbers too.

Here and here for example. Only in the US we don't have educational programs to stick these people in.

I wonder if the Swedish moderates are taking a tactic from American liberals.

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