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Sweden report Sweden report
by Euro Reporter
2008-01-20 09:11:01
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Real working men wear kilts in Sweden

A growing fashion trend in Sweden involves a new type of kilt designed to combine style and function for hard-working men. Susanne Kristianson said her company, Blaklader, created the heavyweight cotton kilt to daring Swedish men a new fashion choice.

"We initially launched the kilt as a sort of experiment. We thought only a small number of daring men would wear it. But it proved to be surprisingly popular," Kristianson said. Carpenters, in particular, enjoy the additional pockets and extra places to store tools. The kilt was named 2007 "Fashion Product of the Year" by the Swedish Textile and Clothing Association.

There has been no word yet as to whether Sweden's builders will begin wearing the kilt to put an end to the decades-old "Builder's Bum", although the public will hope they also wear underpants when up on the scaffolding.

* * * * * * * *

Green car sales soar 49% in Sweden

Swedish sales of environmentally friendly cars rose by 49% in 2007 largely thanks to financial incentives from the state, announced Sweden's Environmental Protection Agency. "A total of 55,000 new green cars were registered in Sweden in 2007. This means that green cars accounted for 18% of the total car market in Sweden," the agency said in a statement.

The government introduced in April 2007 a rebate of 10,000 kronor ($1,553) for private individuals who buy a new car that produces lower emissions, runs on biofuels or is a hybrid. "Sweden is showing the strongest growth in green car sales in the world," Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt said in parliament last Wednesday.

This is not that surprising when you consider Sweden's positive environmental past. In fact this week marks the 30th anniversary of Sweden becoming the first to ban aerosol sprays in an attempt to reduce CFC emissions and safeguard the Ozone Layer.

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Police find suspicious 'sex bomb'

Police who blocked off a Swedish parking garage after a suspicious package was found discovered the vibrating bundle held a sex toy, not a bomb. "A man found a package yesterday (Wednesday) in a parking garage (in the south-western city of Gothenburg). It was taped up and it was very suspicious. It was vibrating,'' local police spokesman Frans Dahlen said.

Police had sent at least four patrol cars to the spot and had blocked off the area before technical personnel cautiously opened the package. "There were no explosives. Just a sex toy ... A dildo,'' Mr Dahlen said.

Once again it is lucky that this occurred in Sweden and not the security obsessed US, especially Texas because there is a state law that prohibits the sale or promotion of ""Obscene device[s]" mean[ing] a device including a dildo or artificial vagina, designed or marketed as useful primarily for the stimulation of human genital organs." Swedish police would just add it to Lost Property, while the Americans would have begun a man/woman hunt.

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Emanuel Paparella2008-01-20 11:23:07
Indeed, Puritanism dies hard in America and explains much of the other side of the coin: pornography and the degradation of women, but let us not forget that it did come from England via Holland and Calvinist theology with its neo-Platonic dualism of body and soul. That dualism in turn inspires shallow caricatures by the religion basher such as that of conceiving of heaven as the playing of a harp on a cloud. Musings!

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