Social & Political

Icelandic authorities to get leaked HSBC data

February 15, 2015

Recently there has been much discussion in Icelandic society as to whether or not authorities should purchase a list of people who have money in foreign tax havens. The list is similar to the one that German authorities (and others) have already bought (if not the same), which led to them recovering millions of euros […]

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Payday!

November 10, 2014

As I have written about in this space before, the current government was elected pretty much on one promise: that they would relieve the debt burden of households whose mortgages had skyrocketed as a result of the economic meltdown. They have been dragging their feet with this debt write-off [while wasting no time with removing […]

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With impunity

October 27, 2014

Recently I posted some musings on Facebook, wondering whether the Icelanders of today were much like the Icelanders of old under the oppressive heel of our former colonizers. It often seems to me that the people of this country choose blindness over sight, letting a certain segment of society [read: the elite] perform increasingly outrageous acts with complete impunity. And I’m […]

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Recycling old party tricks: shooting the regulators

October 16, 2014

Over the last two evenings, current affairs programme Kastljós has run an excellent report exposing a long-term price-fixing scheme between the two main shipping companies in Iceland – Eimskip and Samskip. The findings came in the wake of a raid by the Competition Authority on the offices of the two companies several months ago. Iceland is a country that produces very […]

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Six years on: God bless Iceland

October 6, 2014

Today it is six years since then-Prime Minister Geir Haarde* appeared before the Icelandic nation and delivered his “God bless Iceland” speech, in which he told us, in very circumspect language, that this country was completely screwed. It was a terrifying day. Everyone had their own reaction to the speech: some people wept, some [like me] were […]

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Iceland, six years after the meltdown

September 29, 2014

Six years ago today, my bank, Glitnir, collapsed. It was a regular Monday. EPI and I had just returned from a holiday abroad the night before, he had gone to work, and I was at home unpacking the suitcases. At around 9 am he called me and told me that Glitnir had gone bankrupt. I was speechless. […]

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What is happening in Bárðarbunga – in layman’s terms

September 7, 2014

The Icelandic National Broadcasting Service [RÚV] recently had an excellent and easy to understand explanation of the forces at work in Bárðarbunga, the caldera beneath Vatnajökull glacier that has been repeatedly mentioned in connection with the current eruption in Holuhraun. I’ve taken the liberty of translating it for the edification of those who don’t speak Icelandic and perhaps […]

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Grave developments on the Icelandic media market

August 27, 2014

As most people are aware, a free and independent media is one of the four cornerstones of democracy. Therefore when serious struggles for control of the media occur it is definitely a cause for alarm. When the economic meltdown took place in 2008, many of us were shocked to realize that much of the madness and corruption that had […]

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On the supposed superiority of Icelandic produce

August 15, 2014

There is a subject close to my heart that I have occasionally considered posting about, and since the discussion has recently arisen on our Facebook page, I figured this was as good a time as any. It concerns the supposed superiority of Icelandic produce, and this image of Iceland as somehow pure and untainted in all things […]

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Why I won’t give a sample of my DNA to Decode Genetics

May 11, 2014

Last week I posted a picture on our Facebook page of the contents of an envelope I received from the company Decode Genetics, in which they kindly request that I give them a sample of my DNA. I made some glib remark about swabbing the dog, but didn’t really explain the full story. Basically it is […]

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