Relation between the State and its citizens, power, law, obedience, free opinion corridor
(social anthropological view)



Sweden on the organizational and structural level is in core a hierarchical, authoritarian and patriarchal society. The thinking patterns are formed during hundreds years of repression of free and independent thinking, (see there are no Macchiavellis, Savanrolas, Diderots, Voltairs, Hugos. The Lutheran ideology was a tight cage; no other opinions allowed see www.econaut.se/index.html#two  For questioning ideas conflicting with the Lutheran ideology there was a punishment of expulsion form the country.

Although the first impression is that the human interrelations are soft, egalitarian and flexible. This is similar to an impressions you get if you enter a plantage in South America, all workers are friendly, helpful, funny, entertaining, or let us take Downton Abbey, all butlers, maids footmen are friendly, flexible, accommodating. In both cases this “softness” of oppressed and frightened of their masters. There is no equality and reciprocity between the owners, masters and the staff.
This is exactly the relation between the State and its citizens in Sweden. In the same way like in Downton Abbey the servants within their group reinforce a submissive attitude towards the “upstairs” and punish anybody who want so aspire to something “higher”. Any deviation within the “downstairs” habitual behaviour is coerced by the colleagues. This is so clearly visible how citizens of Sweden (august 2020, still no recommendation to use a face mask) are treating individuals who “dare” to wear face mask in public out of their own initiative, despite that, obviously not limiting freedom of others.

In Sweden, historically a long oppression formed a meek, accommodating character. Like masters in Downton Abbey, god masters, benevolent state takes care of you and if it done in a fair way you may find your situation acceptable (downstairs accommodation) and you reduce your expectation “jentelagen”
( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_of_Jante ) is a Swedish expression for this approach

The ten rules of Law of Jente state:
1. You're not to think you are anything special.
2. You're not to think you are as good as we are.
3. You're not to think you are smarter than we are.
4. You're not to imagine yourself better than we are.
5. You're not to think you know more than we do.
6. You're not to think you are more important than we are.
7. You're not to think you are good at anything.
8. You're not to laugh at us.
9. You're not to think anyone cares about you.
10. You're not to think you can teach us anything.

And the state, the Swedish State is a fair but hard master, is it so?, yes by virtue law and strict regulation. [It was assumed that the corona rules couldn’t be strictly enforced, - and the ignorance of law could not be to tolerated - hence the choice of means of coercion fell on the concept of “recommendations”] Let see other solutions for controlling citizens, in some other countries the aspiring citizens are kept down by unjust regulation, manipulations, corruption, physical suppression, cast systems (or similar stratification), financial rules. So what the upper class, the ruling class, owner class is doing to keep “populous” in a relatively stable inferior position.

You can see citizen no reaction to some injustices, in shops, in the situation of poor service, not running trains etc. One is asking why this stoic approach, why nobody bursts in curses as it is seen in in Italy and many other countries. No, Swedish are not blind but they do not react why, they are “afraid” to react. Why are they afraid – it is a key question? My hypothesis is that it is a lack of personal confidence, lack strong identity separated from the state, creates an infantile attachment to a paternalistic authoritarian state. Paraphrasing, the state has a very narrow tolerance corridor. The national ethos accepts the new frames and discourages the old, Abortion. The old intolerance is replaced by the new intolerance.

It is easy to govern Swedish. The people will not put a lot of demands on the state as long as the basic needs are satisfied. The paradox is that the system to defer from putting demands is very weak; if you do you will often get your things through. The system relies on the assumption that in your psychological environment of negative approach to boldness, arrogance and social aggression will deter overwhelming majority of citizens form reaction, asking, requesting.
The relation between the state and the citizens in relation to the “education of citizens” is reciprocal, the state empathises trust I authorities, in education, adjustment to collective, participation in various social activity groups, sports etc. at the same time exploits the non-confrontational attitudes in this “collective“ way “indoctrinated” population.

The Swedish paradox for “aspiration to be good” and the “merciless coercion” is visible in the relation of Swedish to alcoholics and drug addicts. Hard working citizen drunk on weekends is OK, it is understood that he or she has to cope with social pressure - an escape for a while - but an alcoholic drinking daily is despised, and despite that the alcoholism is defined in Sweden as a sickness. No, an alcoholic will not get any helping hand, no compassion, full condemnation.
The relation to drug addicts is even worth although the addiction is also defined officially as a sickness. To take drugs, especially when one feels good is an absolute negation of the Swedish values and is despised. Strangely the fact of taking drugs in isolation alone, is punishable, why?, taking drugs is anyway self-destruction and should command compassion.

In such emotional framework the idea of the Basic Unconditional Income is totally out of question. It is the same Swedish paradox, “we will help you but you must feel bad, guilty and thankful”