Mark 009 (5)

Photo: Emma Stockdale

I am an independent British-Swedish political analyst, economist and author who have had the opportunity to work within both the public and private sectors. Well-known employers include the Swedish Foreign Ministry, OMX (Nasdaq) and Cantor Fitzgerald. I was employed by Cantor during the September 11 disaster (Cantor Fitzgerald was the company most severely affected; 650 colleagues passed). This disaster proved a career turning point for me. Analytically I started to focus on the threats to a vital society. I have found that internal threats pose an even greater long term threat than terrorist attacks. Not least flawed politicised group-think passed around as if based on objective science.

I have worked internationally with corporations, think tanks and research institutes. By now I am also a regular contributor to the public debate both in the UK and Sweden. Communicating my line of balanced back-to-basics thinking has at times proven an uphill battle given the dominance, as I see it, of pretend radicalism dressed up as moderation. In Sweden the group-think surrounding the alleged blessings of top-down EU control remains so widespread that those of us publicly challenging the EU power centre can, still to this day, be counted in… seconds. However, I am now sensing that the mood is shifting in the Nordics not unlike how it shifted in the UK a few years back. Illustrated by an EU debate presently marked a little bit less by moralistic platitudes and a little bit more by either complete silence or guarded mumbling. There is good reason to believe we are already experiencing the transition period of “nothingness” which always precedes an opinion shift.

A speech clip in which I suggest the key reason Denmark, Norway and Finland have all outclassed Sweden during the coronavirus crisis. Speech delivered on September 12 during a Nordic conference, in beautiful Swedish town Kungälv, on how Nordic EU relations are influenced by the coronavirus crisis. The Pan-Nordic School (Nordiska Folkhögskolan) has luckily replaced the once proud Bohus Fortress as the center of town activity. The latter is an embodiment of the fact that democratic erosion is not necessary in order to co-operate successfully across borders.

I was born and raised in Sweden and studied at the Stockholm School of Economics (M.Sc Economics). During most of the 21st century I have lived in the United Kingdom. This means I am privileged to have experienced, first-hand, not only the political debate and professional culture of two extraordinary countries; but also the way of life in general. I have simultaneously experienced how the political culture has changed quite dramatically over recent decades. The perhaps most influential general change? In both countries mentioned the connection between politicians and the people was, not long ago, uniquely strong. Rooted in the fact that numerous leaders had at least partly spent their formative years on the field of practical reality. Leading to a grassroots understanding of real problems. Usually including a healthy dose of scepticism towards utopian political Megaprojects. Slowly but steadily numerous politicians in both countries have slided into the type of top-down territory that typically emanates from too much armchair thinking – and distinguishes just about every unsuccessful society.

Personal frustration about this troubling development, which certainly betrays both the democratic and economic legacy of many of our hard working and practically oriented forebears, has contributed further to my increasingly strong interest and involvement in modern politics. In my view it is now our shared duty, if genuinely caring about the health of society, to do what we can to facilitate a return to a grassroots oriented mindset. Meaning the type of mindset that, for generations, made it a privilege to be born in countries such as the UK and Sweden.

I am the author of two books “A State of Independence: Why the EU is the Problem not the Solution” (Endeavour 2016) and “The Role of Sweden in a changing Europe: 17 reasons for Swexit and a Fresh International Start” (Realia 2018). Both books are heavily influenced by the so called public choice school of thought. This is a school of thought which, among other things, takes the testimonies of the establishment experts with a pinch of salt. Why? Because there is an abundance of proof that establishment experts will most typically, in every era, act not as establishment challengers but as establishment apologists. Not least when the establishment enters overshoot terrain. Yes, there are honourable exceptions among social scientists; but the voices of the latter are typically so few they are easy to dismiss as outliers.

Professionally I like to think that my USP’s include hands-on realism, to-the-point communication as well as constant analytical awareness of the fact that our limited human minds tend to lead us towards tribal thinking. Typically involving truly moral (in a good way) tolerance within our tribe and truly moralistic (in a bad way) intolerance as soon as we step outside. This is what largely explains why every so called expert community, throughout the history of politics, has always been quite heavily partial in favour of its political paymasters. While still most often acting in good faith. Our current era provides no exception. This politicisation problem is indeed why truly independent analysis – analysis produced outside the establishment web of vested interests – is much needed.

From a purely analytical standpoint the current period of transition is fascinating. Not least while so many fields need to be combined to ClearThinkingcome close to a full understanding: political science, economics, public choice, institutionalism, history, social psychology, individual psychology as well as the field of political campaigning. When bringing the key findings from these disciplines together, something I continuously strive to do, the results are highly revealing.

I have recently initiated an international multidisciplinary Master Mind project: “Responding to Populism: How to Heal Broken Nations”. The purpose of this project is twofold. The first purpose is to consolidate the thoughts of many of today’s real thought-leaders. Those who are not particularly interested in tribal point scoring of any variety; but are instead primarily driven by arriving at the honest truth. The second purpose is to build on the consolidated findings to arrive at a practical way forward for society. Ambitious? Sure. But luckily I am not alone. I lean on the key output of some of the greatest social science brains on the planet. Given time, as the saying goes, all will be revealed.

Please see my Services page for a list of topics I regularly return to when producing and delivering analytical reports, forecasts, articles, speeches and books.