Do Swedish Bureaucrats Try to Look Bad on Purpose?

So tell me, do Swedish bureaucrats lie awake at night trying to figure out how to appear more anti-Semitic than they already seem? Here’s the latest ham-fisted move, this time by the Swedish Social Insurance Agency:

Miriam Landau, who moved to Sweden with her husband in the 1950s after having survived living in a concentration camp, has since received payments from the German state as recompense for her work while living in a ghetto.

The Swedish Social Insurance Agency (Försäkringskassan) has ruled that [these] payments should be classified as a pension and the sum [should be] deducted from Miriam Landau’s Swedish pension.

Miriam Landau argues that the agency has illegally confiscated some of the remuneration she received as indemnity for the Nazi persecution.

A decision by the Gothenburg administrative court of appeal (Kammarrätten) in November 2007 ruled that the retroactive payment of 80,000 kronor ($8,812) made under the German ZRBG law of 2002 should be considered a pension, in favour of the Social Insurance Agency.

Miriam Landau has appealed the decision and argues that the payment should be classified under the spirit of the German indemnity law and that the Social Insurance Agency had no right to confiscate 42,942 kronor of her pay out.

She argues that the ZRBG law classifies the payments as a “pension” only because it is paid out after the recipient has reached the age of 65 but should be seen as indemnity for work in the ghetto.

Considering that her work in the ghetto ended up with contracting double lung tuberculosis, Ms. Landau has every right to the money paid her by the German indemnity law.
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Call it workmen’s compensation if you like, but this woman is entitled to some recompense from the German government for the foreclosure on any chance of ever having a normal work life:

In court papers Miriam Landau points out the ZRBG law states that the payments should not be considered social security and stipulates that payment be made only if it directly benefits the intended recipient.

The Social Insurance Agency therefore has no right to any of the money, Miriam Landau argues.

Ms. Landau has been unable to work since her arrival in Sweden in 1950:

She was diagnosed in 1945 with double lung tuberculosis as a consequence of her time in the ghetto and concentration camp and has therefore been unable to work since moving to Sweden.

This bureaucratic bullying is a disgrace.

I have written The Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany to see if they can be of material aid to this 84 year-old survivor of the Nazi’s evil empire.

You can see their website here. There is a email contact page if you wish to add your voice to this one. I used the “General Information” email, but you may find one of the others a better choice.

Hat tip: TB

4 thoughts on “Do Swedish Bureaucrats Try to Look Bad on Purpose?

  1. Two fictional scenarios

    So lets say a recent Iraqi immigrant to Sweden had worked for the Americans as an interpretor and lost his leg in an IED attack. Because of this the US sends him a monthly check for the rest of his life. Do you think Sweden would ask for a cut? Doubt it.

    Or how about a Palestinian from Gaza? Lets say the Israel bashers got their way and Israel paid every Palestinian reparations for having being forced to live in the “Gaza or West Bank Ghetto”? Once again, how much do you think Sweden would ask for?

    Spot on Dymphna. How do these people sleep at night?

  2. Nope! The iraqi would probably get even more money than before. The appeasement of islam reaches new lows every day. However, the brits, the dutch, the french e t c is probably not too far beind us though. Maybe they even get inspired by this…

  3. Call me an ignorant American, but I am starting to develop some very dark suspicions about European society.

    It seems to me, sitting here on my side of the Atlantic, that several of the European nations are reverting to their pre-war habits of thought, especially with respect to the Jews — but also with respect to individualism, human rights and the capitalist economy.

    I’d rather be wrong.

  4. The Swedish treatment is despicable and it runs against international fiscal norms and tax treaties. I am not aware of any other jurisdiction that would tax German reparations. The rationale being that such payments are not considered income, but they are actual reparations. That is why they are called “Wiedergutmachung”. Like if your house is burned down and you get it’s value back back so you may rebuild it, or if your arm is blown off and you get a lump sum repayment, this is not income but a reparation. How can you tax that?

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