Sunday, May 25, 2008

Give me a break ... !!

An article in Dagbladet online today about the Swedish media's reaction to the Swedish entry's 18th place in the ESC final last night. The newspaper Expressen blames, first and foremost, Norway for the bad result, saying that we have 'betrayed' them by 'only' giving them 7 points. They 'ought' to have gotten at least 10 for their piece of shit song.


First of all, this song shouldn't even have been in the final, because number one, it wasn't the song the Swedish people wanted to send (it was the jury votes that made Hero the winner; Sanna Nielsen was the one the voters wanted and with her Empty Room she would definitely have done better than Perrelli) and number two, it didn't get the votes it needed from Europe in the semi, it only snuck in as the jury groups' wildcard. So Perrelli and her entourage + supporters should just have been grateful to be in Belgrade at all, because strictly speaking they had no business being there in the first place.

The Swedes have been some of the worst to whine about the bloc voting the Eastern Europeans are all engaging in. But now when the Scandinavian bloc voting didn't work out to their advantage, all they can do is whine about how there isn't enough bloc voting going on here!! The much-touted 'Nordic alliance' was just a mirage, Expressen's ESC commentator claims. Well, yeah, it is a mirage if they thought it was an alliance in support of Sweden regardless of the song involved!

The commentator, Andreas Häggström, thinks that Norway ought to give Sweden 'ten points as a minimum'. WTF?? This is a democratic vote, the TV audiences at home vote in whatever way they will! Should we set aside the televote and reserve the 10-pointer for Sweden every year? Is he advocating blatant cheating? This has got to be the dumbest ESC-related statement I've heard this year (and I've heard some doozies ...).

Norway gave 12 points to Denmark, 8 to Iceland and 7 to Sweden. How is that a 'betrayal'? Even with the extra five (!!) points from us Perrelli would still be languishing in 18th place. Even with every single Nordic 12-pointer I don't think she would have made it any higher than 14th. So how is it even possible to be whining about this?? If Sweden wants to win through bloc voting - which is strange, since they appear to loathe bloc voting so much when it helps other nations to win - then they should just throw in the towel right now, because the simple fact is that no Nordic country has enough neighbors to make that possible.

The answer's obvious. Send some better songs!! Hero is a piece of shit and no one ought to be surprised that it didn't get anywhere. Fortunately, the majority of Expressen's own readers seem to agree. This really is a prime example of an 'aviskrig' ('newspaper war'). An argument that doesn't really exist other than in the articles describing it.

The Swedes need to make up their minds. Either bloc voting is bad and borders on cheating, or it's a good thing and we should all be happy it exists. It really cannot be cheating when 'they' do it, and natural and even desirable when we do it. That is just not right. (In fact it's almost as bad as when people claim we need to kick the Easterners out and return to the good old days when the contest was just for us 'real Europeans'. :-o) Let's just look reality in the face: Europe is tired of the same old ABBA ripoffs that Sweden keeps sending year after year. It worked in the past, but it doesn't work anymore. Just deal with it and get up to speed.

Because that's almost the saddest thing of all. We all know that Sweden can do so much better. The national contest in Sweden is generally on a much higher level than the Norwegian one. It was that way this year too. When that's the case, and Norway still manages to get to 5th place with Sweden far behind in the dust at 18th ... that's when it's time to wake up and smell the coffee.

Good luck next year, Sweden. I know you can do it ... if you really try. :-)

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