Gustaf Hofstedt was the president of the local Social Services board in Gotland, Sweden during the Domenic Johansson kidnapping case. He was also representative of the Conservative Party there which is in alliance with various centrist parties that form the current government of Sweden. He describes himself online as "slightly to the right", would be willing to vote against the official party line were he ever to become a member of parliament if he felt strongly enough about an issue, and is a former member of Jan Björklund's Liberal Party. He also writes about himself:
"I have a liberal heart. I think well of people and it is my belief that people who live in freedom always do well. I love the island of Gotland, Sweden and the Nordic countries, and of course my family and everyone else that makes life exciting and worth living". He describes the second of his three most important policy issues as being "a free and open Sweden" (Gustavus Hoffstedt, Conservative Party, translated from the Swedish original)
Bravo! He sounds like the sort of man I could get on with. A liberal (libertarian?) at heart, a family man, a lover of the Nordic countries, and a believer in a free and open Sweden! But why, oh why, do I now have a problem believing him? Because of the notorious DOMENIC JOHANSSON CASE in which he played a leading rôle. He totally ignored the letter I wrote to him, along with the letters of many, many other concerned libertarians and homeschoolers, and in response to the press has been the total opposite of what he claims to believe in: freedom and openness. News reporter Bob Unruh writes:
Gustaf Hofstedt, president of the local social services board in Gotland, earlier told WND by telephone from Sweden that there is more to the dispute than homeschooling, but he refused to explain.
"I understand the public debate has been that is a case that is only concerning the fact of homeschooling," he told WND. "But that is not the case."
Asked to explain, he said, "I can't answer that question because of secrecy." (Bob Unruh, Father Jailed for Visit with Son Set Free - 'Released Today, After 2 Terrible Months!')
Secrecy?! What utter nonsense! The Johannsson family have been totally open about themselves, their lives and their experience, which has itself annoyed Gotland Social Services (GSS) - and no wonder - they're as guilty as hell. The intial reason for GSS kidnapping Domenic Johansson and placing him in foster care was because they had problems with that human right called homeschooling even though it was perfectly legal at the time. Indeed, they thought Domenic was far too affectionate! Only later did GSS start scraping the proverbial barrel in order to fault the Johanssons and the best they could come up with was that he had some cavities (which child doesn't these days) and his parents had refused vaccinations, which they are allowed to do by Swedish Law...hardly grounds for destroying a family!
We have been waiting 1½ years for GSS to come up with any other grounds for so drastic an action which they have not done other to cling to some psychiatric hocuspocus - even the psychiatrists have contradicted themselves. So why is this boy still in custody? Why has this family been so heartlessly traumatised all these torturous months? They have done absolutely nothing wrong! What other "secrets" do GSS and Mr. Hoffstedt have? Since they refuse to be "free and open" about this whole case then they must expect people to speculate. And that is what I now intend to do since members of the public like myself have no other choice.
Myself and many others believe that the orchestrated 'silence' and 'secrecy' is nothing more than a political cover-up. What else can we conclude? This kidnapping has horribly back-fired on the political establishment and it is simply doing everything in its power to protect itself so that Sweden can maintain its false squeaky-clean image abroad. May I venture to suggest to any Swedish politicians reading this that the time for damage-control is long past and that the longer they delay in putting this horrible business right, the worse it will be for them and for Sweden's international reputation?
Whether they like it or not, this whole corrupt system is going to be exposed and split apart at the seams - there are just too many people who have been abused by it and they aren't going to remain silent forever. They are beginning to shout. Kidnapping Domenic Johansson was the biggest mistake that those who are trying to preserve a corrupt socio-political system ever did. And then banning homeschooling into the bargain was, for the current government, the biggest mistake it ever made, and all because of one stubborn, arrogant Liberal Party Chief and Education Minister with a barrack-room mentality who is totally out of touch with 21st century information-age education.
A lot is at stake here which is, I maintain, why Hoffstedt et al are maintaining secrecy. It's not as though they have some 'terrible' information about the Johanssons that is too ghastly to leak to the public, is it? I mean, they're not terrorists, are they? They are just a very loving Christian family who just happen to believe in doing things a bit differently from the statist, conformist, government-promoted mindset.
I hate to imagine what those on the 'inside' have tried to concoct against the Johanssons to save their reputations and jobs. Don't these people realise that all the upheaval in Egypt, Tunisia and Middle East is all about popular dissatisfaction with dictatorial ruling cliques who keep things on the inside hidden from public view? May Sweden never have to experience that kind of social unrest! We want this to be done peacefully, responsibly, democratically and in accordance with EU Law and the UN Charter of Human Rights.
Sweden is, admittedly, a lot more docile than the Middle East, but things will inevitably change if political reform is not forthcoming in this country. The collusion between politicians, the judiciary (which defends the state before it does individual rights), the psychiatric profession and social services is, as so many have observed, reminiscent of the former Soviet Union rather than a free democracy.
And that's the whole point that I want Mr. Hoffstedt and others to squarely face, in spite of their claimed political beliefs, that Sweden is not free and Sweden is not open. The whole Domenic Johansson case has been virtually conducted behind closed doors. Why? What is so terrible about a warm and loving Christian homeschooling family that an Alcatraz mentality has been triggered in the establishment causing them to do everything behind steel walls? They aren't even allowed to have their own lawyer defend them! Why? Because a human rights activist is the last thing a totalitarian political establishment wants exposing their undemocratic charade.
And if Mr.Hoffstedt has been kept in the dark as to what is really going on (which is quite possible), may he now rise to the occasion and lift his voice in support of the Johanssons and other homeschoolers! To do good in this life requires taking some risks and I am asking him to do that.
This webpage, and others like it, has a wide circulation abroad now. The rights of homeschoolers, kidnapped children and their devastated parents can not be suppressed any longer. And the establishment has to be reformed to make sure that Sweden does not further slide into a soviet/fascist-style dictatorship. As a nation Sweden has already crossed some dangerous lines.
It is by no means too late for some honest and serious change. The abuse of power by government, whether local or national, has to end. Family and homeschooling rights have to be restored before Sweden becomes both a laughing-stock and a pariah nation amongst the free democratic countries of the West. A wise man said that to test the character of a person, give him power. Well, we have seen clearly how some in this country who lack sound character manage the use of power.
Gustaf Hoffstedt was, I am told, elected to the Swedish parliament in the last election as a Swedish Conservative MP, so he is no longer head of Gotland Social Services. Will he now admit that a terrible mistake was made with Domenic Johansson or is his career with the 'big insiders' more important than the truth and the democratic rights of the individuals and families?
I would honestly like to be impressed by him. I was once a Conservative before becoming disillusioned with the whole political power-game. I would like to see this man's professed ambitions be realised. Sweden needs men like him who claim to be committed to freedom, openness, family and libertarianism. However, he was involved in a terrible, terrible travesty of justice and that must be put right quickly.
I would like to see Mr. Hoffstedt's high and noble political aspirations translated into distinction and honour as one now willing to vote against his party in respect of the infamous Education Bill that criminally banned a human right (the right to homeschool) and to spearhead a reformation in parliament to end the horrid abuses by Social Services against families in this country, foremost of which being the abuses against the Johansson Family that occurred under his auspices in the Gotland Municipality.
There are tens of thousands of devastated families in this country who desperately need freedom from socio-political abuse. Will he now demonstrate that he is a man of integrity, committed to freedom and openness, and to genuine liberality, or will he hide behind the corrupt system that is shielding the guilty and punishing the innocent? That is what I want to know. That is what Domenic Johansson's family wants to know, that is what all homeschoolers what to know, and that is what all democratic Swedish libertarians want to know.
In the meantime, we are going international big-time with Domenic Johansson and homeschooling until Sweden becomes what it professes to be - a free, open, democratic and human-rights-respecting nation instead of the quasi-Soviet dictatorship which it is now. I want to be proud of this country that I have made my home and recommend it heartily, but first it must be willing to undergo some political surgery so that the present climate of fear and pain can be cleared away and decent people be allowed to breathe freely again.
And if this isn't Hoffsted's Dark Secret - the one he woudn't tell to Bob Unruh - I would like him now to tell Sweden and the World what exactly it is. Let us have a full and open enquiry, the way he professes to like it.