Oct 7, 2018

A week of win and losses

1. The week when the Nobel Prize in Literature wasn’t announced.

2. The week when Brett Kavanaugh was sworn in to the Supreme Court.

3. The week when Jean-Claude Arnault was found guilty and convicted for rape.

4. The week when the right wing (Moderaterna) Ulf Kristersson was assigned by the Speaker of the Swedish Parliament to try to form government.

So how do I put this together? I don’t. Although two of the points are related.

To point 1: my hope from last week regarding this subject turned into disappointment. Yes, the FBI-investigation was held. In which they did not find a place, a time or any witnesses supporting Christine Blasey Ford’s detailed testimony against Brett Kavanaugh, accusing him for sexual assault during their high school years.

Those opposing Kavanaugh claim the FBI-investigation was doomed from the start, limited and constrained. After all, the investigation was commissioned by the White House, although not by the White House choice. FBI is only a client.

Christine Blasey Ford. What will her life be after this? Are the thousands of women (and men) all over the country demonstrating supporting her until the bitter end helping at all? 

Is there even one whistle blower through the history who afterwards didn’t disappear into the shadows of his/her own story? Yet, we have to whistle. I hope Christine Blasey Ford will find comfort, strength and pride in knowing she did the right thing. 

To point 2: the result of the Swedish general election was unfortunately even, 144 seats in the Parliament to the Left bloc, 143 the the right. And 63 to the nationalistic end xenophobic Sweden Democrats. 

By some incomprehensible reason math didn’t count. The Right argued they were larger than the Left. 143-144. On 25 September Prime Minister Stefan Löfven lost the vote of no confidence against him and his cabinet. As a result, a new PM and government will have to be elected. 

On Oktober 2 the Speaker gave Ulf Kristersson, the leader of the Right party (Moderaterna) the assignment to try to form government. Try is a crucial word here. Positions are locked since neither bloc is willing to compromise and the willingness to talk to or be supported by the Sweden Democrats varies and are still unclear. Ulf Kristersson will have to come upp with a government within in two weeks. So, To be continued…

To point 1 and 3: the start of the fall of The Swedish Academy, which awards the Nobel Prize in Literature, was 18 women accusing a man in close connection to the Academy of sexual assault and rape. The name of this man is Jean-Claude Arnault, married to one of the Academy members.

I have been following the tragic, dramatic, messy and historic events of this story and here is more to reed.

Out of all the accusations towards Jean-Claude Arnault - events which had been going on for decades - two held all the way up to court. The long time span has been a negative factor for the victims. As Brett Kavanaugh, he has denied all allegations, but on October 1 Arnault was convicted of rape in one case. For that, he will spend two years in prison. The prosecutor will go further with the second case.

It is in a way symbolic that the verdict towards Aranult fell on the same day as the announcement of the Nobel Prize should have taken place. Should have. Because 2018 is the year when the controversies within the Academy made it impossible to hold on to the tradition. The confidence around the world for the Academy is broken. An historic institution is shattered. The image of Sweden and one of the finest awards in the world is soiled. All for a man who couldn’t keep his dick in his pants and his hands off women. And for his pals who didn’t think it was a big thing.

But. Jean-Claude Arnault is now a felon. He will spend two years in prison. And there might be more to come. And every woman he has laid his hands on can stand tall. Because the verdict tells the story.

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