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Sara Skyttedal


YEPP stands united for freedom for the last dictatorship of Europe - Belarus. Our delegates during summer school in Lithuania showed their support for the supporters of democracy during a manifestation.
Dictator Aliaksandr Lukasjenko got his office on July 20th 1994. Last Sunday it was exactly 20 years ago. He has remained in power due to unfair and unfree elections. Lukashenkos regime continues to violate human rights. We want freedom for Belarusian political parties, for Belarusian press, for Belarusian political prisoners, but first and foremost, freedom for the Belarusian people. We say - 20 years is enough. Europe is destined for democracy. Lukasjenko is destined to fall.


All of you have probably heard from Social Democrats, that Sweden is the ultimate example that left ideas are in the best interest of your countries. That following the Swedish example will make your country prosperous and that Sweden has succeeded thanks to high taxes and a well built welfare state.
Truth is, this is not the case. In reality, the Swedish experience should rather be used to argue for free-market reforms and against big government. A big welfare state is not the only thing that sets Sweden apart from other countries. Our strong work ethics and high levels of trust might be some of the reasons that Sweden has succeeded even though we have a large welfare state. British Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) published a paper written by Swedish Nima Sanandaji on this issue.
Some of the highlights from it:
·      Sweden did not become wealthy through social democracy, big government and a large welfare state. It developed economically by adopting free-market policies in the late 19th century and early 20th century. It also benefited from positive cultural norms, including a strong work ethic and high levels of trust.
·      As late as 1950, Swedish tax revenues were still only around 21 per cent of GDP. The policy shift towards a big state and higher taxes occurred mainly during the next thirty years, as taxes increased by almost one per cent of GDP annually