The land of fear and silence

Iceland is going through some very painful times right now. We don’t know if we will be here as a nation in a few years time or not. What we lack here in Iceland at the moment is the “leakage” or “snitching” as it might be called. It is a known fact that leaks are very important in times like these. People who leak information to the press, police, special prosecutors and so on are the unsung heroes of every society.

They keep the government or the corrupt companies or individuals in place, and can “bring them down” or bring them to justice by simply giving information to the appropriate parties. Around 40% of all information that bring down companies or governments and reveal corruption, crime and injustice come from leaks.

Why then is the title of this entry as it is?

Iceland is the land of fear and silence, that is a sad situation for all. Sad indeed but a fact non the less. This has always been like this here. Nobody want to rat out his neighbour, boss or anyone in fact. The word honor is used in order to shield oneself from the necessary duty of leaking information. The thing is that information should be leaked in situation like Iceland is facing now.Whitleblower-for-dummies

The criticism facing Icelandic government and the Icelandic value system as a whole, on this site for example, is getting stronger. Here there is no way to get information on people in prison for example. It is not possible for me to find out if a murderer, conman or a notorious pedophile is in jail or not. They must be protected, while the people they hurt live in fear of running into them.

The people who are usually outspoken in times of terror or injustice are usually the academics. The well educated, the university lecturers, the people who have the means to communicate and the arguments to back up their views. But here that is not the case. University lecturers where notoriously afraid to come out as pro EU supporters because they feared they would loose credibility. One said that he would loose 70% of his credibility by doing this. Fear of what? The credibility in whose eyes? The fear was of political adversaries, who are outspoken in many cases. After the economic collapse this changed, and some of people came out of the closed staring to promote the EU membership, something they should have done years ago. The result of their silence is a society that has been brainwashed in thinking that the situation in Iceland, before the economic disaster and even more so after it, is better than being a part of the EU.

The silence of the academics has made political and social discussion so very twisted because of the right neo-conservatist propaganda of the ruling political party and their henchemen. The Independence party. People are still afraid to leak information. The secrecy and the fear is looming, it is pressing down on the national pshycy like a bad M.Night Shaymalan film.

Leakage has to have two very important helpers, the media and the court system. The media here in Iceland is simply not up to the job in most cases. The courts are full of political party members hired by the political elite to look after their interests, and there is a blatant lack of will to act if information is leaked. Nobody talks because everyone is afraid of something.

When national interests are on the line, the people with the information run and hide when they should stand up and shout over the rooftops.


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