Why is the Perussuomalaiset party riling mad at the Finnish media?

by , under Enrique

By Enrique Tessieri

You know that there is something wrong whenever a group, never mind a major political party like the Perussuomalaiset (PS), start accusing the media for their problems. This is exactly what Matti Putkonen and MP Jussi Halla-aho did Wednesday on  YLE, when they blamed the media for treating the PS unfairly compared with other parties.

This view was contested by Risto Uimonen, chairman of the Council for Mass Media in Finland and a guest on the show. He said that since the election, when the PS became the third-largest party in Finland, it’s only natural that it has come under greater media scrutiny.

Even though Putkonen, who was convicted of rape in the early 1990s, vows to restore the PS’ good name in the media, it’s pretty clear that any such attempt will end up in failure before it leaves the drawing board.

If we look closely at what Putkonen and Halla-aho said, it’s clear that the party is pretty much in the dark about the watchdog role of the media.  Statements by them and PS MP James Hirvisaari, who has called the media “bloodthirsty hyenas,”  should instead sound alarm bells.

I am certain that if these PS politicians had their way, they’d be the first to curtail press freedom in order that the media would write what they wanted. Putkonen said in a letter to journalists that the media should “serve the fatherland when writing the news.”

Does “serving the fatherland” mean distorting the news and self-censorship when reporting on the PS?

If the PS were fair and had a drop of self-criticism, they’d understand that much of the so-called negative coverage of the party is self-inflicted. Have they forgotten PS MP Teuvo Hakkarainen, sacked PS councilman Tommi Rautio, Ulla Pyysalo, Helena Eronen, Freddy Van Wonterghem and a long, long list of others?

Sad but true. Every month, sometimes every week, we are questionably entertained by some scandal that hits the front pages of the tabloids.

The ignorance and contempt that some PS members have for the media and for freedom of expression in Finland can be seen as well how the party addresses other issue like immigration and cultural diversity.

In their amateurishness and populist anti-democratic wishful thinking, they seek to rewrite history and move the goalposts of  society to fit their intolerant world.

The media is the best insurance that such a thing will never happen.


  1. BlandaUpp

    Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

    They want to burn people’s civil rights but when it backfires and fills the room they’re in, they can’t stand the smoke.

    Jussi Hallah-aho is a racist who bases his ideology on crude racial theories about the genetic inferiority of black people (See here for examples: http://www.halla-aho.com/scripta/guestbook/vieraskirja2.html). He encourages his followers to study the books that inspired his way of thinking. He’s been criminally convicted of ethnic agitation. For these actions he has never apologised or taken back anything he has said. Quite contrarily, like all racists, he claims free speech as a defense.

    Matti Putkonen is a convicted criminal violent rapist who spent 8 months in jail for rape.

    Halla-aho said that he would no longer give interviews or comments to Aamulehti because of a photo of him they published that he found offensive. If he’s this touchy about balding then heaven knows how he will react if we give him real power.

    I don’t need convicted criminals censoring my country’s free press and telling them what they should and shouldn’t write about.

  2. justicedemon


    I think the conviction was for breach of the sanctity of religion (section 10 of chapter 17 of the Finnish Penal Code), not ethnic agitation (section 10 of chapter 11), and this is not yet legally final.

  3. eyeopener

    PS’s problem is very simple as are its reactions. “When you are not with me, you are against me” i

    And as the major part of Finn media do not support PS openly PS attacks the Finnish non-supportive media with the “bloodthirsty hyenas”.

    Hyenas (in this context) are the ones that dwell in the HommaZoo. Hirvi(sic)saari is more than familiar with the nature of hyenas. He has the wrong name: Hyenasaari would be far more appropriate for him.

    His ancestors must have been far more peaceful. Maybe they didnot know hyenas is those days!!

    • Migrant Tales

      Look at the arguments that the PS is making about the media and ask yourself how is it possible that they can make certain claims about immigrants? The bottom line is that they don’t have a clue about what they are talking about. Since they don’t they prefer instead to move the goalposts.They like to create enemies that don’t exist but are good for scoring political brownie points.

      But the PS is in hot water. Get ready to watch a power battle that will force all hell to break loose. The purchase of the expensive apartment headquarters of the party by the PS Foundation is a good example. Timo Soini’s wing now controls the money of the party.

      Where do you think Teuvo Hakkarainen stands in this mess? I’m certain that he’s not liked by Soini’s group.

  4. eyeopener

    Hi TM

    What’s the sound when you throw a piece of ice in hot water?? Exactly: PSsssssssssss and then the piece of ice and the sound disappears.

    Who wants to buy this appartment then?? The worst investment in desperate times.
    Making yourself look better.

    Ping, said the balloon, when the needle went through the skin. We are done. (adapted from Tagore: Fireflies.) 🙂

  5. eyeopener

    Hi MT.

    Hakkarainen is not worthwhile discussing. He only hurts the blistered face of PS even more. Just let him continu to play “Mister Ignorant” His tomb-stone will be finalized in PS.