DSM discussion
with Hans Bergström 

 
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Hans Bergström has for many years topped the list for the annual voting ”The Main Opinion Leaders of Sweden” - a voting where DSM invites 300 Swedish journalists to vote. In 1996 he came second after Göran Persson and the following year, he came third.
      
Recently, Bergström left his post as chief editor for Sweden’s largest liberal morning newspaper, Dagens Nyheter. After midsummer he shall also leave Sweden and move to USA.
      
 Sweden has become a one-party state and this has been significant for Bergström’s decision to leave the country.
      
The Sweden that Hans Bergström is now leaving, he explains, is another Sweden than the Sweden of the 50’s where he grew up. He feels sorrow when he thinks of all the good in the Swedish tradition which is now on the point of falling apart - industriousness, ingenuity, the tradition of engineering, the tradition of honesty, responsibility.
      
The DSM discussion with Hans Bergström covers a large field of questions.
      
Even if the one-party state Sweden must still be counted as a democracy, there is a dangerous process of change moving away from democracy and an open society, warns Bergström.
      
In the last number of DSM, the publisher Jan Gillberg expressed the idea that Sweden has become a ”Soviet Light”. There are two points in common with the Soviet system, explains Bergström. One is that there is a nomenclature. The other is the mentality, which is spreading.
      
The media is greatly responsible for the development that has taken and is taking place:
     
”If one systematically, concerning all reality, basically has a socialistic interpretation, the people’s picture of reality cannot avoid being influenced”, explains Bergström.
      
A particular problem is that in Sweden there are no longer any distinct and dedicated representatives for industry and business. Bergström emphasizes:
    
”One must be tremendously aware of the risk of getting the same adaptation as in the 60’s. What we then experienced was a vast bourgeois defeatism and adaptation even from the Business organization’s side to that that was the power, which one then thought one should keep on good terms with. I see an enormous risk that we are heading in the same direction now.”



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