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Borgen, porn, and money panic.

A RECENT EPISODE of the increasingly lacklustre Danish series Borgen focused on the issue of prostitution. Birgitte Nyborg, now leading a brand new party of her own — though one that seemed to have no policies except getting into government — had to decide whether to join in the campaign to ban it or not. So lustreless is the series now that I forget how the issue arose in the first place, but the idea that the Danes had any qualms about the matter came as a surprise to me. Like many I was brought up believing that however dull their politics and eating habits were, the Scandinavians were up for any kind of sex with anyone, anywhere at anytime and it was all thoroughly legal, if not compulsory.

Luckily, or should I say inevitably, Birgitte “evolved” on the issue and decided that she and her party would graciously allow the trade to continue. So ten points, Birgitte, for coming to a sensible and grown-up conclusion. Minus ten points, though, for even considering the opposite, especially for political gain.

What brought this to mind was stumbling across a couple of articles on the internet. Since electing a socialist government, which re-loosened the country’s immigration laws, the Danes have seen increasing numbers of asylum seekers turning up at their borders (6,000 in 2012), all of whom have to be housed, clothed, fed and catered for. At the same time the government is having to cut welfare. One area in which it has done so is in what appears to be housing benefit (my Danish is non-existent and the Google translation facility turns everything into an avant-garde prose-poem so I may be misreading it).

AS A RESULT of these cuts many young people will be unable to pay their rent and are either having to move somewhere cheaper or find ways of making extra cash. They’re suffering from what the translation machine calls “money panic” – such a good phrase I’m going to start using it myself. For some women dealing with this money panic means turning to the sex and porn industry. According to Thomas Harder (I jest not) a reporter for Ekstra Bladet, his colleague in the business has had a 10 per cent. increase in what he calls “model applications” in December alone.

The politician Harder singles out for blame for this fiasco is Mette Frederiksen, a member of the Social Democrat party. Ms Frederiksen, I’m glad to say, fits the socialist template to perfection. Just a couple of years ago she was taken to task for sending her daughter to a private school, while being a strong advocate of state education and criticising — yes, you’ve guessed it — parents who send their kids to private school.

There is something about this concatenation of increased immigration, welfare cuts and an expanding porn industry that amuses me. I don’t think Birgitte would be amused, but no doubt she’d find a way of abolishing all immigration controls and doubling the welfare budget at the same time, all without creating a single new sex worker.

And Mr Harder wouldn’t use the word “pispotten” for her, as he does for Ms Frederiksen. No translation needed.

Michael Blackburn.

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Peter Hansen
Peter Hansen
6 years ago

Unfortunately most of the Danish right-wing parties are also unwilling to do anything effective to curb immigration.

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