Saturday, January 01, 2000

Norway, still too good for Europe

In 1994, 52% were against and 48% were in favour of a EU-membership. A pretty close race - why? A couple of incidents prior to the EU-election boosted the Norwegians bloated nationalism. The Norwegians (with prime minister Brundtland in front) had just shown their autonomy by continuing the killing of whales. In the late 80s Mrs Brundtland and lobbyists even made a "documentary" showing how "humane" the killings were. Special "grenades" that sent shock waves through the blubber - making the killing instant and painless - was regular news. Even hard-core urbanists felt the call of the wild - when Norway's God-given right to digest sea-mammals was threatened by foreign infidel biologists... The consensus among Norwegians to stick together and fight for sea-meat was in one word - silly. Everybody agreed - hunting is what's makes them Norwegian. "We are Norwegians - proud of killing whales" was a typically t-shirt print. The vast majority believed it! Even the press had little or no interest in this strange polarization, and they printed little or nothing of foreign views, unless intended to ridicule them. No, the Norwegians stuck together - a small country with happypeople surrounded by people not like them.

The Olympic Games in Lillehammer, just months ahead of the EU-election, didn't make it any better. The Norwegian organizing committee’s slogan was: “They said we couldn't do it, so we did” Now, think about that slogan for a minute. Who said "we couldn't do it"? Who didn't believe in the brave Norwegians? Who could be so silly as to have doubts about the magnitude of what The Norwegians, sons of vikings could achieve...(sic). Nobody of course - the slogan is propaganda in it's purest form - a lie. If you don't have an antagonist, well go and make it up, if you need it to get your views across.

Norwegians celebrate their national independence every 17th of May. Not with armed personnel and tanks in the street or fireworks - but with children parading with flags, thousands of them - compulsory, but fun fun fun. Sodas and hot-dogs, ice-creams and sweets. It is all good stuff, or is it? Look at the flag - have some soda. Wave it and holler "hooray" - eat some hot-dogs. Wave to the royal family standing on the palace balcony - stuff your head with sweets. If you do this every year in may from the age of 1 - it does have a Pavlovian impact.

So, take for granted that Norwegians have undergone serious brain washing (or brain freeze) while growing up. They stand by the flag. It is not a country, but a tribe. They don't do ritual dances around the oil wells - which are far out on the seas. But they do jitter with joy, every time they can assure themselves that they live in the richest country in the world, based on statistical figures. And they do ejaculate spontaneously whenever a blood-doped tribesman with skies sheds a tear while receiving a gold medal accompanied by the Norwegian national anthem (Ja, elsker dette landet - Yes, we love this land).

All of the above relates to at least 4% of the Norwegian population. That is why they're not in the European Union (but are free to make business with some of the great democracies in the world; like China)

Ps. The album " Ja, vi älskar" (bottom pic) was banned from the Norwegian shelves in 1978. A Swedish jazz legend - Arne Domnerus, made a jazz-version of the Norwegian national anthem. It is still forbidden. So, if anybody out there in the free world can rip it, I'll be glad to post the link here.

No comments: