The Nordic Countries show the way of COVID-19 treatment.

First, let us acknowledge that the Nordic Countries are not socialistic. They are welfare states, and as such have government controlled medical care paid for by taxpayer dollars. In Sweden the Value Added Tax is 22% and it is paid by everybody for all purchases. Of course gasoline and other luxury items such as cosmetics and spirits are taxed much higher, but you get the point. The important part is that all pay their fair share of taxes, so all contribute to the welfare state. But other than that, the Nordic countries are less socialistic than U.S.A. Even the railroads are privatized. It is true they all flirted with socialism in the 1970’s but found it was unsustainable (read Pomperipossa in Monismania), so they turned back from the brink and are now doing better than most countries. In fact, their 2021 economic freedom index is mostly higher than the U.S.A’s. They are as follows: Denmark is ranked 10th, Iceland 11th, Finland 17th, Sweden 21th and Norway 28th. By comparison U.S.A. is 20th out of 178 ranked countries.

Now to the Nordic countries and COVID-19. Almost alone in the western world Sweden decided to take the route of achieving herd immunity rather than using masking and shutdowns. Only sports and other large gatherings were prohibited. At first it looked like a catastrophe for Sweden, this was before any vaccines, but then some form of herd immunity started to form. More than a month ago Norway decided to treat Covid-19 just like a flu and abolished all Covid restrictions. Three weeks ago Sweden decided to “pause” the Moderna vaccine for people under the age of 31 years of age. Their reason was that there are more severe vaccine cases than cases in that age group. Denmark, Finland and Iceland followed.

What is the current COVID-19 situation in the Nordic countries?

. Fully Total since beginning of pandemic Last 7 days average per day

Country Vaccinated Cases/million Deaths/million Cases/million Deaths/million

Sweden 67% 114,137 2,465 58 0.40

Finland 66% 27,000 201 103 0.54

Denmark 78% 63,128 460 112 0.20

Norway 68% 35,760 161 73 0.36

Iceland 81% 36,197 96 122 0.00

(U.S.A) 56% 137,120 2,230 1,405 4.22

As we can see, Sweden, with a horrendous start is now near or at herd immunity having less than one tenth of the death rate of the U.S. The other Nordic countries are doing equally well, and this is without forced wearing of masks. Their vaccination rates are higher than In the U.S.A, but the difference in result is staggering. The masks will actually increase COVID cases.

V-E day 1945. A childhood memory from Sweden.

V – E day 1945. Ah, yes, I remember it well.

In 1944 my father bought a shortwave radio to listen to news from the the Finnish war. He sat up at night, at exactly kaksi, kymmenta kaksi (22:00) there was a ten minute condensation of the war news. Sweden had taken in more than 70,000 children from Finland to keep them from being ravished by the war. In addition we had some Estonian children and a few Jews in the school where my father taught. I was not yet four years old, but I was fascinated by the news, asking my father what it all meant. Then came the spring of 1945, and  the family sat around the radio to listen to the noon news. They told that Denmark had been liberated the day before, and that the German army had surrendered. The day was May 5. So I asked my father what that all meant. My mother interrupted and smiled broadly “That means, we are going to have peace.” Being not quite four yet, I remember answering “But what are they going  tell us on the news then?” Up till then, all I have heard on the news was war news. They assured me that from now on there was only going to be good news on the radio. We all hugged and sang a song, I don’t remember which one, but we often sang “Blott en dag” (Day by day). This has become our family song, and we have sung it as good night prayer for years with both our children and grand children.

 1 Day by day, and with each passing moment,
Strength I find to meet my trials here;
Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment,
I’ve no cause for worry or for fear.
He, whose heart is kind beyond all measure,
Gives unto each day what He deems best,
its appointed part of pain and pleasure,
Mingling toil with peace and rest.
2
Every day the Lord Himself is near me,
With a special mercy for each hour;
All my cares He fain would bear and cheer me,
He whose name is Counselor and Pow’r.
The protection of His child and treasure
Is a charge that on Himself He laid;
“As thy days, thy strength shall be in measure,”
This the pledge to me He made.
3
Help me then, in every tribulation,
So to trust Thy promises, O Lord,
That I lose not faith’s sweet consolation,
Offered me within Thy holy Word.
Help me, Lord, when toil and trouble meeting,
E’er to take, as from a father’s hand,
One by one, the days, the moments fleeting,
Till I reach the promised land.

 

 

The Arctic is melting! Time to order more Ice breakers.

Politico penned an article with the title “Finland finds global warming’s upside.”

“The country’s icebreaker business is booming as the shrinking ‘ice cap’ (sic) opens up new opportunities.”

This is the official line, the shrinking Arctic ice sheet. A more realistic assessment is the increasing oil ans gas exploration by the Russians, and the desire to open up the North East Passage for oil and gas export for a longer season.

Finland has been making ice-breakers for a very long time. The Northern Baltic freezes over and on cold years there is no ice free harbor in Finland in February.

When Finland was under economic treaties with the Soviet Union after WWII the major export from Finland to Russia was ice breakers.

This reminds me of an anecdote from that time.

The Russian Government had ordered a large ice breaker, and before building is started they go over the drawings with the Finnish contractors. The Russians notice a room named Sauna. “What is that for?” they ask. The Finns explain: “We always have a Sauna on a ship this size to keep the crew sane, healthy and happy.” ” And how do you use it?” the Russians asked. “Well, you heat up the Sauna to as hot as you can stand it, and then everybody sit in it naked until they can take it no more,  then run out and jump into ice cold water for about one minute, and so they feel good for the rest of the day,” the Finns answered. The Russians looked bewildered and said: “You really do that? You mean, mixing officers with regular crew?  We must have two Saunas, one for the officers and one for the crew.” So the Finns added an Officers Sauna to the plans, built the ice breaker, and at the inspection the Russians reacted in horror. “What?, the crew and the officers have identical saunas with the same wooden benches? You must make the officer’s sauna more prestigious!” So the Finns copper clad the benches in the officers sauna!

I have no idea if the story is true, but I get this sizzling feeling from the bottom of my seat every time I think of it.

 

Some thoughts on the horrendous murders in a historic church in Charleston, S.C.

DylannThomasAfter the horrendous murders at the historical Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina 17 June, President Obama said early the next day at the White House. “At some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this kind of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries.

Not to be outdone Hillary Clinton said at the beginning of scheduled remarks at the annual National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials conference in Las Vegas: “We have to face hard truths about race, violence, guns and division,” and then continued: “How many innocent people in our country from little children, church members to movie theater attendees, how many people do we need to see cut down before we act?

The Nordic countries  have very strict gun-laws, and the murder rate from guns is much lower than in the U.S. Yet , they have had their fair share of mass murders,

Scotland, population 5.1 million.
Shortly after 9 a.m. on March 13, 1996, Thomas Hamilton, a 43-year-old former Scout leader, burst into the gymnasium of a primary school in the tranquil Scottish town of Dunblane.
Within minutes 15 children aged five and six had died in a hail of bullets. One died later in hospital. Their teacher, Gwen Mayor, a 44-year-old mother of two, died in the attack, reportedly while trying to shield her pupils. Two other teachers were also seriously injured while heroically trying to protect children. Hamilton turned one of his four handguns on himself and was found dead at the scene.
Norway, population 5.1 million
OSLO — A lone political extremist bombed the government center here on Friday, killing 7 people, the police said, before heading to an island summer camp for young members of the governing Labor Party and killing at least 80 people. The police arrested a 32-year-old Norwegian man, Anders Behring Breivik, in connection with both attacks, the deadliest on Norwegian soil since World War II. Breivik was at first accused of being a fundamentalist Christian, but as the investigation started it was established he was bent on reestablishing Nordic Pride including the Nordic Gods and the time-old traditions.
Finland, population 5.3 million.

on November 7, 2007, at Jokela High School in the municipality of Tuusula, Finland, a gunman, 18-year-old student Pekka-Eric Auvinen, entered the school armed with a semi-automatic pistol. He killed eight people and wounded one person in the toe before shooting himself in the head; eleven others were also injured by flying shattered glass. Auvinen died later that evening in a Helsinki hospital.
He described himself as “a cynical existentialist, antihuman humanist, antisocial social darwinist [sic], realistic idealist and godlike atheist”

A year later, on September 23, 2008, at the Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences[4] in Western Finland, a gunman, 22-year-old student Matti Juhani Saari, shot and fatally injured ten people with a Walther P22 semi-automatic pistol, before shooting himself in the head. He died a few hours later in Tampere (Tammerfors) University Hospital. One woman was injured.

Here are 4 horrendous shooting murders in very civilized and advanced countries in less than 20 years. The population of U.S. is 20 times larger than the combined population of Scotland, Norway and Finland. To have the same frequency of horrendous murders the U.S. should expect 80 mass murders in 20 years, of about 4 a year.

The common thread of these mass murders is that they occur in gun-free environments.  Obama’s assertion is therefore false, Hillary’s call for action is even worse: Removing legal gun ownership, but ignoring the multitude of illegal firearms, expanding gun-free zones to include whole high crime districts, leaving the illegal weapons possessors to rule those areas.

(The picture to the right shows the perpetrator, Dylann Roof with a jacket with the insignia of apartheid South Africa and Rhodesia, from his Facebook page, now taken down. Warning: The patches may be photo-shopped. One never know those things anymore.)

What is the solution?

Governor Sarah Palin had a fantastic link on her Facebook page : Prayers for  Charleston: http://www.ijreview.com/2015/06/347576-the-only-comment-on-dylann-roof-s-facebook-profile-photo-will-bring-you-to-tears/

Trust me, it will bring you to tears. Pray!