Majority would curb freedom of speechIt is easy to always blame the media for our lack of genuine debate. It is a fact that almost 70% of Norwegian journalists vote for Socialist parties. Since even our "centrist" parties would be considered Democrats by US standards, it means that maybe 80 - 85 % of our journalists are Democrats from an American point of view. And yes, this is a problem. But right now VG, which is Norway's largest, and Scandinavia's second largest newspaper after Sweden's Aftonbladet, has less censorship on its blog than I do here. They accept unregistered comments, which I do not anymore, and they allow some comments that even I would have deleted. Although this is commendable from a free speech point of view, I suspect they will face increasing pressure to stop this. I have posted some comments there myself. Nothing unusual or outrageous to my readers here, just pointing out that Islam itself is intolerant and that Islamic terrorism in Europe has been caused by massive Muslim immigration, not by the war in Iraq. This triggered some self-proclaimed anti-racists to say that I was a neo-Nazi, and that unless VG barred me from posting such racists comments, both the newspaper and myself (they wanted my IP address) could be charged with and prosecuted for racist remarks. So far, VG has continued with its lenient censorship at its blog. I mention this just to show that, in all fairness, the journalists aren't always the problem:
Majority would curb freedom
A vast majority of Norwegians say they'd like to see limits placed on the constitutional freedom of extremist groups, like neo-Nazis, to express themselves. They'd also favor a ban on public meetings of racist groups or Muslim or Christian fundamentalists. A survey conducted by TNS Gallup for Norwegian Social Science Data Services in Bergen showed eight out of 10 Norwegians supporting a change in current constitutional rights regarding freedom of expression, speech and assembly. "This is very surprising, and shows that there's a certain anti-democratic current running through the population," said lawyer Cato Schiøtz, one of the Norway's foremost experts on freedom of expression. Schiøtz linked the NSD survey results to "an element of common intolerance" lying under the surface of lofty claims to the contrary.
Danes wish to limit freedom of expression
Six out of ten Danes want to make it a criminal offence to express sympathy for terrorist organisations and attacks. In other words, voters now seem willing to tighten existing anti-terror legislation introduced after the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States. Next week, the far-right Danish People's Party is to discuss ways to limit freedom of expression when it comes to expressing sympathies for terrorism. Nonetheless, the ruling Liberals have dismissed tightening current anti-terror regulations. This morning, Liberal MP Birthe Rønn Hornbech said that the need to demonstrate political will to clamp down on terrorists should not lead to the creation of a police state.