The Knife Launch Instagram To Support Left Party Ahead Of This Weekend’s Swedish Election

From across the Atlantic, Sweden has always seemed to me like one of those firmly liberal countries where everything is free and everyone gets along. This perception is apparently a myth. As in many other nations around the world, anti-immigrant populism is on the rise, with the far-right Sweden Democrats poised to put up a fight in the national election five days from now.

The Knife, the legendary Gothenburg musical duo comprising siblings Karin and Olof Dreijer, officially broke up in 2014, but they’ve continued to have some kind of online presence in the years since. For instance, they reactivated their social media accounts last year to promote their new concert film, and they auctioned off the instruments they used on tour for charity. Their latest pursuit is an Instagram account dedicated to fighting the fascist movement in their country and promoting the Left Party, aka Vänsterpartiet, in this Sunday’s election.

Their first post features a video produced by Framtidens välfärd, a group “in which Olof is active.” One of “a series of videos about the commodification of the Swedish welfare system,” it’s a dark parody that features music by Olof. As the band’s caption explains, “In an ironic, dystopian fashion, not dissimilar from how Sweden is today, it presents sectors of the welfare system as profitable investment opportunities. The films effectively dismantle the idea of Sweden providing education and healthcare on equal terms for the entire population.”

Here’s the band’s full statement:

On September 9th, there is a general election coming up in Sweden. In the upcoming weeks, we will share a few things here that we think are very important.

For this election, we endorse political initiatives that aim to increase social justice and equity. There is a common belief that Sweden is a paradise of social equality, but recent political development points to the contrary. Like many other countries, Sweden has experienced a toxic mix of neoliberal and neo-fascist policies and we stand before a very scary election in which the Sweden Democrats, a party with roots in the neo-nazi movement, may become one of the largest parties in the national parliament. At the same time, other parties have adjusted to the rhetoric of the neo-fascists, with the conservative party Moderaterna suggesting to militarise socioeconomically challenged neighbourhoods and the Social Democrats closing Swedish borders and making it really hard for people to make use of the human right to seek asylum.

With these videos, we want to encourage voters to support the Left Party (Vänsterpartiet). This party is the only party in the parliament that convincingly promotes social justice, wealth distribution and a more humane migration policy. They are also in favour of an equal welfare state, free from commercial interests gaining large profits from tax-funded schools, health care and elder care.

Firstly, we would like to share a series of videos about the commodification of the Swedish welfare system produced by a group called Framtidens välfärd in which Olof is active. Olof has also made the music in the films. In an ironic, dystopian fashion, not dissimilar from how Sweden is today, it presents sectors of the welfare system as profitable investment opportunities. The films effectively dismantle the idea of Sweden providing education and healthcare on equal terms for the entire population.

We share this message in English since a large proportion of our followers are non-Swedish, and we encourage you to support similar initiatives in your countries. #viröstarvänster #virostarvanster

See the accompanying video below.

On September 9th, there is a general election coming up in Sweden. In the upcoming weeks, we will share a few things here that we think are very important. For this election, we endorse political initiatives that aim to increase social justice and equity. There is a common belief that Sweden is a paradise of social equality, but recent political development points to the contrary. Like many other countries, Sweden has experienced a toxic mix of neoliberal and neo-fascist policies and we stand before a very scary election in which the Sweden Democrats, a party with roots in the neo-nazi movement, may become one of the largest parties in the national parliament. At the same time, other parties have adjusted to the rhetoric of the neo-fascists, with the conservative party Moderaterna suggesting to militarise socioeconomically challenged neighbourhoods and the Social Democrats closing Swedish borders and making it really hard for people to make use of the human right to seek asylum. With these videos, we want to encourage voters to support the Left Party (Vänsterpartiet). This party is the only party in the parliament that convincingly promotes social justice, wealth distribution and a more humane migration policy. They are also in favour of an equal welfare state, free from commercial interests gaining large profits from tax-funded schools, health care and elder care. Firstly, we would like to share a series of videos about the commodification of the Swedish welfare system produced by a group called Framtidens välfärd in which Olof is active. Olof has also made the music in the films. In an ironic, dystopian fashion, not dissimilar from how Sweden is today, it presents sectors of the welfare system as profitable investment opportunities. The films effectively dismantle the idea of Sweden providing education and healthcare on equal terms for the entire population. We share this message in English since a large proportion of our followers are non-Swedish, and we encourage you to support similar initiatives in your countries. #viröstarvänster #virostarvanster

A post shared by The Knife (@theknifeofficial) on

Additionally, the Knife posted a rare band photo featuring both members in casual attire, their faces relatively unobscured, along with a caption in Swedish. Translated to English, it reads, “We believe in the Left Party because their distribution policy makes them the most solid and anti-racist party. They are for a human refugee policy, have a sensible environmental policy and are against profiting off welfare.”

Tags: The Knife