‘Trump threatens democracy’

That was the headline Monday on the main editorial of Norway’s largest newspaper, Aftenposten, long considered the country’s conservative newspaper of record. By stirring up “even more doubt about the (US) election process,” President Donald Trump is “causing great damage through his irresponsible behaviour.” It was a highly unusual editorial in an otherwise staid and […]

Corona crisis unity dissolves into chaos

NEWS ANALYSIS: National crises often bring people and political rivals together. Less than four months after uniting during the Corona crisis, however, the gloves came off and political chaos descended on Parliament before it recessed for the summer holidays. Longstanding party alliances also seemed to shatter in the process, with Labour even teaming up with […]

Battling ‘ableism’ along with racism

COMMENTARY: A vision-impaired doctoral candidate at Oslo Metropolitan University questions how a country like Norway, which scores high on the Human Development Index, isn’t more open, inclusive and enlightened on integrating people with impairments into society. It’s time, he suggests, to confront “ableism” as much as racism. **************************************************************** From Minneapolis to Oslo, San Francisco to Stavanger, Boston […]

Debate rises over Corona measures

NEWS ANALYSIS: As Norway’s government struggles to fine-tune its battle plan against Corona, and relies on a strong sense of Norwegian solidarity, it also finds itself battling a multitude of critics who reckon that current measures to contain the virus go too far – or perhaps not far enough. Several legal experts, for example, voiced […]

Oil Fund ‘sell-off’ sends mixed signals

NEWS ANALYSIS: Political intrigue fueled the Norwegian government’s decision just before the weekend to sell off stock in companies devoted to oil exploration and production. The decision grabbed lots of attention it may not have deserved, and sends mixed signals about how top Norwegian politicians evaluate the risks of being as involved in the oil […]

Norway’s ‘Posten’ self-destructs

NEWS COMMENTARY: Norway’s postal service (Posten) seemed to continue its march towards self-destruction of traditional services this week, when it confirmed consolidation of all letter sorting for Southern Norway at its Lørenskog terminal northeast of Oslo. Hundreds of people working at terminals in Bergen, Stavanger, Trondheim, Molde and Stokke are likely to lose their jobs, […]

Conflicts fly behind ‘Green Capital’ year

NEWS ANALYSIS: Oslo’s political leaders were basking in the spotlight on Friday, ready to officially kick off the city’s year of being hailed as Europe’s “Green Capital” in 2019. Muttering in the background are critics who claim it’s all just a big show that’s costing residents and taxpayers dearly. The critics are not limited to […]

Solberg’s speech ‘catered to KrF’

NEWS ANALYSIS: Prime Minister Erna Solberg was widely seen as trying to appeal to the Christian Democrats Party (Kristelig Folkeparti, KrF) in her annual New Year’s address to the nation. It dwelled heavily on the value of children and family life, issues at the core of KrF policy as Solberg’s government launches negotiations to include KrF […]

Security issues hit Solberg’s coalition

NEWS ANALYSIS: The past few week’s political storm over errant government minister Per Sandberg was supposed to die down on Tuesday, but was leaving lots of damage in its wake. Opposition politicians are milking it for all its worth, as they seem to seek new ways to topple Prime Minister Erna Solberg’s conservative government coalition. […]

Paradox of the monarchy lives on

NEWS ANALYSIS: Many a paradox in Norway has been pointed out of late, not least  the country’s conflicting roles as both oil producer and environmental advocate. Its constitutional monarchy in a country that otherwise prides itself on being egalitarian, however, makes all others pale, especially given the monarchy’s huge public support. The monarchy’s role was highly […]