The (anti-)establishment of the Norwegian Green Party

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The impact of July 22

GEF: Have tendencies of populist and anti-establishment rhetoric perhaps become more controversial since Breivik’s terrorist attack of July 22 last year?

Schei: “Spreading hatred and anger towards political opponents has become a taboo I think, but the quality of the debates has generally remained the same. Of course, Miljøpartiet has never stood and will never stand for stimulating hate against other political parties.”

Strømmen: “The attack has certainly led to discussions on the impact of a certain type of rhetoric, also within the political parties. Personally, I think this has improved the ongoing political debates in Norway. On the internet, you can still find horrible comments though.”

Øyvind Strømmen, copyright Déi Jonk Gréng.

GEF: How has Miljøpartiet reacted to the events of July 22? Was there an official reaction from the party?

Schei: “Yes, there was. In general, the party expressed its sympathy with the families of the victims, and said not to fight Breivik’s ideas with the same hatred as he did.”

Strømmen: “Just like all other political parties in Norway, Miljøpartiet decided to postpone the campaigns for the local elections of 2011 for several weeks. Personally, I think that Miljøpartiet should have put its ideological core element of anti-racism more in the foreground.”

GEF: Before the local elections of 2011, politicians called on Norwegian people to go and vote in order to show how important democracy still is in their country, and that they do not accept anti-democratic threats. These calls did not turn out to be successful, as the turnout was not significantly higher than before. Do you have an explanation for this? What did Miljøpartiet do in order to stimulate people to go and vote?

Schei: “I think this is simply because many people in Norway have become politically tired. There are only few political opinions that strongly differ from each other – particularly on the local level. Of course, I think that Miljøpartiet can make a difference here. Consequently, our party had relatively good results in last year’s elections. Miljøpartiet joined the public calls to people to go and vote to show the strength of democracy in Norway, and specified this to young people by using social media. After all, it was mostly young politically active people who were killed by Breivik, so I think that young people can be the more motivated to show that they do not accept such horrible threats.”

GEF: One party that lost significantly in the 2011 elections, was the right-wing populist Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet). It has appeared that Breivik was actively involved in the youth organisation of this party between 1997 and 2007. How radical is this party actually? Have people been blaming Fremskrittspartiet for Breivik’s actions?

Strømmen: “Fremskrittspartiet is certainly a right-wing populist party, but they are not on the radical right. Their rhetoric is much more modest than that of Geert Wilders’ PVV, for example, and while they are certainly very sceptical to today’s immigration policies, and often propose a line which is highly restrictive – and in my opinion quite deplorable -, their official policies are far from the anti-immigrant ones that one finds in a number of political parties across Europe.”

“Actually, I believe it is partly thanks to Fremskrittspartiet that no radical right-wing party has managed to establish itself in Norway. Fremskrittspartiet certainly attracts some radical voters and members, but for the most part it is a relatively moderate right-wing protest party.”

“Of course, one can find similarities between Fremskrittspartiet and more radical groups, but at the same time several of their politicians have distanced themselves clearly from radical right-wing rhetoric and ideas. One example is a local politician – formerly central in the youth organisation of Fremskrittspartiet – who recently condemned anti-Roma hate rhetoric on the internet in no uncertain terms. In fact, their youth wing is led by a young man who himself has a non-European immigrant background. I doubt we will see that happening with for instance the Vlaams Belang Jongeren soon.”

“Therefore, I do not think that this party can or should be blamed for what one insane – whether clinically or just politically – individual inspired by extreme right-wing ideology did. Criticism against Fremskrittspartiet should be based on their policies, and on their rhetoric, not on Breivik’s terrorism. This has also been the consensus in Norway. Apart from some radical left-wingers, very few people have been blaming Fremskrittspartiet for what has happened.”

“Lastly, while Fremskrittspartiet’s bad election results in 2011 could probably be partly ascribed to scepticism against their anti-immigration policies in the wake of Breivik’s attacks, and to a pull towards moderate political forces, I also think that there are a number of other reasons. Fremskrittspartiet has experienced several scandals in recent years which have not necessarily played all that well with their potential electorate.”

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COMMENTS ARE CLOSED

  1. Leslie Anthony-Robinson 04/04/2015 at 03:34 | Permalink |

    April 4th, 2015…Hello Norway Greens Party…I am a British American in Australiua…I require Humanitarian Refuge long ago and the evacuations of all Indigenous youth abnd children in the gippsland area where I live. These people require retreival, restoring, reform and theirs only my daughter also savage victim of Australians…Too shocking to express…There are persons “at war”
    as insane in huge networks of narcotics evil, so far found in Melbourne and suburbs, Gippsland where we moved when my daughter Alma May Robinson was born in 1993. Terrible times…Criminality found nowhere on the earth. Sydney and NSW was so insane. Never in Australia have I ever been able to move a step. I condemn all British as fatal as rare Welsh, Scottish/French ancestry. I require an Academic use of my findings in Victimology as us all being innocent, peaceful, dignified examples of what were wonderful people in many nations, ages…I cannot believe the racial/gender attacks as hostiles. I have found Acts of Crime Against Humanity and Genocidals. I deny any use other than specialized Intelligence at American standards. I will in no way consider Australia a nation and certainly not Democratic. I plan to sell my home and travel to Cyprus, Paris, France, a whizz through UK then to remain indefinitely in Washington, USA. I will demand my daughter Alma and her partner Michael Judd, an Aussie with Danish mum, be reassured that they may visit America and know they may be with me and meet my husband and family…an excellent network of hardworking world people. I miss America…I could never be brought here. Interesting because my father, born in Montana was the bastard offspring of an unknown Norwegian. His mother was Scottish/German…International Law will remove every human victim and have these Goddamn perpetrators treated as Correct Procedure. Law Enforcement is not what Australia is. I have collected my last case…very tired of ordeals, dump it on a doorstep…The most imprisonable.
    Help us All please…Thank you. 1 Dempsey Court, Morwell 3840, Victoria, Australia…+61 (03) 51330080…+61 (0)413530206…Immediate response requested for anyone who cares…I am extremely tired of trying to find professional standards…Lawsuits anyone ?? Best regards, Leslie Anthony-Robinson

  2. Leslie Anthony-Robinson 04/04/2015 at 03:47 | Permalink |

    It has occurred to me to re-found the Unity Party of Australia as Democratic representation of Indigenous Rights and respect of Non-Australians and Environmental causes. Also due to continuing Narcotics impacts/risk throughout the community I have also considered establishing the ICEBERG Foundation to record Narcotics activities known to the public, victims of Narcotics crime, referrals, legal advice, use of information by Law Enforcement and treatment…Most of it has no hope. I am multi-cultural Australia and am not impressed with the lack of standards for very good people. Australia is back in the White Australia Policy Era. I condemn all forms of Racism and will regard Discrimination as serious offence. I would like advice or assistance in how to initiate a political party starting with people as resources…I’m outta here man !! Thank you.

    Best regards,

    Leslie Anthony-Robinson