Swedish town bans excellent school meals because they’re better than average school meals
Another example of the coming life under the boot of socialism. A caring cook in Sweden provides an excellent menu for the kids eating in the school cafeteria and gets told to stop because it is unfair to other schools.
Here’s another article
on the same incident from The Local
, an English language Swedish news site, sent yesterday by a reader:
A talented head cook at a school in central Sweden has been told to stop baking fresh bread and to cut back on her wide-ranging veggie buffets because it was unfair that students at other schools didn’t have access to the unusually tasty offerings.
Annika Eriksson, a lunch lady at school in Falun, was told that her cooking is just too good.
Pupils at the school have become accustomed to feasting on newly baked bread and an assortment of 15 vegetables at lunchtime, but now the good times are over.
The municipality has ordered Eriksson to bring it down a notch since other schools do not receive the same calibre of food—and that is “unfair”.
Moreover, the food on offer at the school doesn’t comply with the directives of a local healthy diet scheme which was initiated in 2011, according to the municipality.
“A menu has been developed … It is about making a collective effort on quality, to improve school meals overall and to try and ensure everyone does the same,” Katarina Lindberg, head of the unit responsible for the school diet scheme, told the local Falukuriren newspaper.
However, Lindberg was not aware of Eriksson’s extraordinary culinary efforts and how the decision to force her to cut back had prompted outrage among students and parents.
“It has been claimed that we have been spoiled and that it’s about time we do as everyone else,” Eriksson said.
She insisted, however, that her creative cooking has not added to the municipality’s expenses.
“I have not had any complaints,” she told the paper.
Eriksson added that she sees it as her job to ensure that the pupils are offered several alternatives at meal times.
The food on offer does not always suit all pupils, she explained, and therefore she makes sure there are plenty of vegetables to choose from as well as proteins in the form of chicken, shrimp, or beef patties.
From now on, the school’s vegetable buffet will be halved in size and Eriksson’s handmade loafs will be replaced with store-bought bread.
Her traditional Easter and Christmas smorgasbords may also be under threat.
Parents and pupils alike find the municipality’s orders distasteful.
Fourth-graders at the school have even launched a petition in protest against the decision to put a lid on Eriksson’s passion for cooking.
I replied to the reader:
It’s right out of Atlas Shrugged! That’s why the book for all its terrible flaws cannot be dismissed. It is amazingly prophetic of our time.
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The principle is: no one shall possess or enjoy anything that is better than what other people possess and enjoy. Nothing that is better than anything else shall be allowed to exist. And this will be enforced.
Jim Kalb writes:
I’m told the Swedes are like this, and even other Scandinavians think they’re insane. On the other hand it really is in line with socialist ideology, and I recall a news item from France several years back in which the socialist mayor of some small town was affronted by some local guy’s offer to build the town a swimming pool or some such because that wouldn’t be equal citizenship. Objecting to some lunch lady who does a spectacularly good job takes the whole theory several steps farther, but it’s not that different in principle from the usual leftist objection to the family. Some parents do better by their children, and that’s not equal.
Paul K. writes:
Central to Swedish culture is the concept of lagom. It’s loosely translated as “not too much, not too little,” but that doesn’t convey the full implications of it. According to an article on the term, “lagom describes the essential and elementary basis of the Swedish national psyche, which is one of consensus and equality. It is still widely considered ideal to be modest and avoid extremes.”
Unusually good cafeteria cooking is an affront to lagom.
Rick Darby writes:
In other news, Sweden’s Minister for Mediocrity, Anja Sönögram-Iceberg, has issued a stern warning to IKEA for selling an armchair that received a Superior rating from Swedish Consumer Reports.
James P. writes:
Paul K. writes:
Central to Swedish culture is the concept of lagom. It’s loosely translated as “not too much, not too little,” but that doesn’t convey the full implications of it. According to an article on the term, “lagom describes the essential and elementary basis of the Swedish national psyche, which is one of consensus and equality. It is still widely considered ideal to be modest and avoid extremes.
When are they going to start avoiding extremes of liberal insanity? Right now their motto appears to be “moderation in the pursuit of equality is no virtue; extremism in the pursuit of the annihilation of inequality is no vice.”
Joseph M. writes:
In the 1930’s Aksel Sandemose, a Dane living in Norway, published a novel En flyktning krysser sitt spor. In this novel he presented the concept of jantelov (Jante law). Jante law was Aksel Sandemose’s term for the communal attitude he encountered growing up in Denmark. Distilled to its essence Jante law might be expressed as “No one is special.”
Posted by Lawrence Auster at October 08, 2012 02:00 PM | Send
I lived in Norway briefly in the 1970s. I first encountered Jante law in my Norwegian language class. It was included in one of the chapters of our textbook along with other chapters concerning the weather, food, local customs, etc. In the textbook Jante law was presented as ten formal rules such as: Don’t think you are better than us, Don’t think you are smarter than us, Don’t think you are good at anything.
I don’t believe that Jante law was included in the Norwegian language textbook with the expectation that it should be taken seriously but rather as a lighthearted poking fun at Norwegian culture. But as an American in Norway it was clear that this communal “No one is better than anyone else” spirit had taken hold to a certain degree.
Sweden shares many cultural similarities with Denmark and Norway. I’m not surprised that the Swedes want to make sure that no one, even their chefs, becomes too successful.