Thinking Citizen Blog — Young Leaders of the World (Part III): Mette Frederiksen, PM of Denmark
Thinking Citizen Blog — Sunday is Political Process, Campaign Strategy, and Candidate Selection Day
Today’s Topic: Young Leaders of the World (Part III): Mette Frederiksen (1977- ) Prime Minister of Denmark
A few weeks ago, I saw the news that the Prime Minister of Denmark, Mette Frederiksen, in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, was going to boost defense spending and call for a referendum to reverse Denmark’s long standing policy of not participating in the European Union’s military actions. This shift was in line with recent decisions by traditionally non-aligned countries like Sweden, Finland, and Switzerland. “European security and defense has evolved more in the last six days than in the last two decades,” said Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission. Today, I decided to learn more about Mette Frederiksen, about whom I knew nothing. This is the third in a series on young world leaders. The first two were on Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand (2/20/22) and Volodymyr Zelenskyy of the Ukraine (3/13/22. Experts — please chime in. Correct, elaborate, elucidate.
YOUNGEST PRIME MINISTER IN DANISH HISTORY, SECOND FEMALE PRIME MINISTER
1. First elected to the Danish Parliament (the unicameral Folketing) in 2001, representing Copenhagen County. (Denmark has a system of proportional representation).
2. Minister of Employment, 2011–2014. Minister of Justice, 2014–2015. Leader of the Social Democrats: 2015- Present.
3. Prime Minister, 2019-present. “In December 2021, she became the longest serving female head of government in the EU.”
“PRIME MINISTER OF CHILDREN,” ANTI-IMMIGRATION, CLIMATE CHANGE
1. “Frederiksen has stated a desire to be “Prime Minister of Children”, and in 2021, she presented a plan, called, “Law of Children”, in order to put the children at front in social cases, including giving municipalities more resources to take children away from violent parents, and to give children more rights in divorce cases.”
2. Skeptical of a liberal mass immigration policy: “For me, it is becoming increasingly clear that the price of unregulated globalization, mass immigration, and the free movement of labour is paid for by the lower classes.”
3. Climate change: has committed to reducing Denmark’s territorial emissions by 70% in 2030 compared to 1990. And to stopping oil and gas production after 2050.
BACKGROUND ON DENMARK: geography, demographics, economics, history
1. Denmark consists of the peninsula of Jutland, 443 islands, and the autonomous territories of Greenland and the Faroe Island.
2. Demographics: 5.8 million total population (Greenland, 56,000, Faroe Islands, 52,000).
3. Economics: high income ($70,000, nominal GDP per capita, 10th highest in the world).
NB: History: neutral during World War I, occupied by Germany during World War II. Denmark is technically a monarchy. The current monarch is Queen Margrethe II (1940 — ) who is also commander-in-chief of the Danish Defence. Support for the monarchy is high at about 82%. The greatest Danish writer is Hans Christian Andersen (1805–1875). The most famous Danish philosopher is the extremely influential Soren Kierkegaard (1813–1955), of whom Ludwig Wittgenstein wrote, “”by far the most profound thinker of the [nineteenth] century. Kierkegaard was a saint.”
#2 “39 Songs, Prayers, and Poems: the Keys to the Hearts of Seven Billion People” — Adams House Senior Common Room Presentation, 11/17/20
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