Anyone who plays with matches shouldn’t complain when the house catches fire. At the SVP’s assembly of delegates, held online a week ago, Finance Minister Ueli Maurer rightly expressed concern for freedom of expression in these times of pandemic. “Sometimes I feel like I’m a member of a cult. Critics instantly become deniers and unbelievers ”. However, he notes, without being a fanatic or a conspiracy theorist, it must be admitted that “criticism is less and less tolerated in this country. People tell me that you can’t say anything out loud anymore. ” All over the world, the management of the health crisis has become a subject of dispute and resuscitates animosities. The crisis and the collective anguish it triggered act as the revealer of a latent social malaise. And with them strengthens the need to point out the source of the danger: “the others”.
Ueli Maurer may well be worried about the deterioration of the political climate. But it is not certain that he is in the best position to do so. After all, it was his party, the SVP, which in recent weeks has tried to breathe the embers of resentment, which launched the accusations of dictatorship against the Federal Council and which tried to muzzle the experts from the scientific task force. President of the SVP between 1996 and 2007, Ueli Maurer was the main architect of the aggressive strategy, of confrontation, which allowed the national-conservative right to become the main force in the country. “As long as I say nigga the camera stays with me“(” As long as I speak of negroes, the camera stays on me “), he had blurted out one day. In February 2007, a little over a year before his election to the Federal Council, he launched a campaign against Muslims, accused of not respecting Swiss values, and against the Greens and the PS, two parties “which want to abolish our values, our culture and our traditions ”.