Friday, August 31, 2007

So far away (but so fun)

The US presidential elections are still so far away, but the heat is on. The DSCC is looking for a new slogan, and since James Carville e-mailed me about it [a group mail of course] I decided to help out and vote (see below):


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Bruce Springsteen: Radio Nowhere

The first single from Bruce Springsteen’s forthcoming album ”Magic” has been released and you can download it through different newspapers (Expressen in Sweden). However, we live in the YouTube-age and there you can already listen to the song, see videos that folks have put together, and listen to a cover by one of these men with a guitar, recording themselves in the bedroom.

I like the single – Radio Nowhere – because it is three minutes of simple, straight Bruce Springsteen rock. However, this one will not be a classic. Maybe a 6 on a scale from 1 to 10. It is not a few minutes of pure rock that blows you out of your shoes, like ”Roulette”, ”Where the bands are”, ”Loose Ends” and other wonderful Springsteen-songs from the late 1970s (to be found on the box-set Tracks, for example).

But there is a new album coming and the rumor says that Bruce Springsteen and the E-street Band will play in Stockholm on December 10th. That will be a great warm up for Christmas.

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Monday, August 27, 2007

Dear SSU – summary of the Congress of 2007

I have been working hard for two weeks, did not care about blogging in English, and I noticed two things. First of all, I missed it. Secondly, I got e-mails asking me what was going on. I was asked what happened with my English summary of the SSU-congress. So, here goes: The SSU-congress in three bullet points:

1. Overall, I was positively surprised. When I sat listening to the political debates, I was impressed by many really ambitious, smart and young delegates who address the congress with detailed speeches about feminism, LesBiGay-issues, the UN-system, etc etc. I felt old but also pleased, knowing that there are loads of talented, young people in the organization.

Moreover, my impression is that there is a real insight into the historic problems of the organization (notably the fights between the ”left and right fractions”). As Jesse Jackson said, a bird needs two wings to fly, and after a few crashes, the bird [SSU] has learnt that the hard way.

2. But, it is still evident that there is still a bitterness that needs to be healed. A few people were extremely bitter during the closing ceremony, something that surprised me (we are not talking about young political newcomers here; a congress should be closed with respect and in good spirit).

3. I think that Jytte Guteland, the new president, will be great. Yes, she is a close friend of mine but we have also worked a lot together in SSF so I know her enormous working capacity and impressive political compass.

However, I think she is facing a dilemma: The organization needs to heal, but SSU must also become a relevant force in Swedish politics again, and then they need to take controversial political standpoints. For example, this autumn Jytte will have to tell us journalists what the SSU thinks about the new EU-treaty. Whatever the SSU-standpoint will be (good or bad, referendum or no referendum) – not everyone can or will be pleased.

In short, SSU will have to manage two things at the same time: Organizational healing and a political battle of ideas and standpoints.

So, that is my summary. And I would like to underline that it is a summary from the sideline. I was never really active in SSU (but in SSF) and today I watch SSU from a distance. I would never dream of giving any advice (unless if a specific question arrives). I just hope that SSU will be an enormously relevant political force (again) that I feel I just have to write about more than only once in a while.

The best of luck, Jytte, the new board, and SSU.

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Thursday, August 16, 2007

On October 2nd there will be ”Magic”

I have to share a press release I just got:

”Bruce Springsteen's 'Magic' Set for October 2 Release on Columbia Records
'Magic,' Bruce Springsteen's new studio recording and his first with the E Street Band in five years, is set for release by Columbia Records on October 2, 2007. Produced and mixed by Brendan O'Brien, the album features eleven new Springsteen songs and was recorded at Southern Tracks Recording Studio in Atlanta, GA.”

More, including all the song titles, here. And yes, I am excited, even though I find the title of the album kind of lame. But it is the music that matters.


Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Karl Rove resigns, and America turns left?

Just as my copy of the newspaper The Economist arrived at my desk, a major piece of political news broke. The piece of news? Karl Rove is resigning. And on the cover of The Economist? The question ”Is American turning left?” For a political nerd, a coincident like this is what we live for and laugh at.

And yes, Karl Rove has a brilliant political mind, that I love(d) to hate and fear. But so many nasty things come to my mind when I think of his legacy. On such thing is the campaign against Democratic senator Max Cleland (Wiki here).

However, Karl Rove’s major idea – to create a lasting Republican majority, just like FDR’s Democratic majority in the 1930s – will hopefully never become a reality. The reason is the war in Iraq that should give us a Democrat in the White House and a larger majority in Congress after the 2008 Elections. Please, plays those cards well, dear Democrats.

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Sunday, August 12, 2007

Mona Sahlin’s ”Summer speech” in Fittja

You can read my web-editorial about Mona Sahlin’s Summer Speech in Fittja here [in Swedish].


Tuesday, August 07, 2007

SSU-Congress 2007

So I am here, at the SSU-Congress 2007 in Örebro. I will blog in Swedish at from here, and write a summary in English when it is all over. [The election of a new president will take place tomorrow Wed in the morning.]


Obama and foreign policy

The New Republic has an article on ”Why Obama Is Repeating Bush’s Foreign Policy Mistake”. Obama and his foreign policy blunders have been a major debate during the last couple of days, but the article concludes in a rather positive way:
”Obama is correct in asserting that the war in Iraq has fueled jihadist terrorism around the world, but, it is not clear that a U.S. withdrawal would unwind this extra jihadist energy any time soon. While the Bush administration's myopic focus on Iraq has allowed Al Qaeda to regroup elsewhere, we must not make the same mistake again, refocusing our energies on Afghanistan and Pakistan while leaving Iraq to become a regional and global operational base for Al Qaeda.

Fighting the war on terrorism on two fronts, of course, is a daunting challenge, and the United States will not be able to do so alone. In his speech yesterday, Obama also made clear that he hopes to enlist the support of Muslims to root out Al Qaeda across the globe. With his inspiring rhetoric, he may just succeed. And, since refocusing money and munitions is not enough, he'll need to.”

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Friday, August 03, 2007

Welcome to the blogosphere, Bill

Guess who has started blogging? Yes, it seems to be a group-blog, and we don’t know how often it will happen. But it would be great with regular postings, about old times and what is happening today. Welcome to the blogosphere, president Bill Clinton!


Thursday, August 02, 2007

Lifelong Truman Show?

There has been a lot of talk of what would happen when/if Bill Clinton returns to the White House on 1600 Penn Avenue as the husband of the new president Hillary Rodham Clinton.

But, and most naturally, this would also mean that Chelsea Clinton would be the child of an American president for probably another eight years. Here is an article on this lifelong Truman Show from The New York Times.

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