Subscription 790/year or 190/quarter

Socialist Election Association

Sigurd Evensmo
Sigurd Evensmo
Evensmo was formerly editor of Orientering, MODERN TIMES's forerunner.
POWER / It involves a long-term process with the formation of one party – in permanent contact with the grassroots.


Da Orientering was started 20 years ago and began the prelude to the renewal of the Norwegian labor movement that was so powerful in the election this autumn, it was a consistent feature of the "circle" that the participants continued in their various subjects and work without thinking that politics would become major. There could be a strength in this that no one dreamed of a personal, political career and tried to distinguish themselves more than others.

But no new movement gains power only as an anonymous collective. The movement needs individuals who interpret its ideas and current demands with their personality, with talent and courage, people who have the will to political power because the ideas and demands feel like an irrefutable pressure, a life task – whatever the cost. They are not strivers, they know that they can lose and end up in a permanent, cold loneliness.

The struggle costs a lot over many years, it requires strength to endure indifference, contempt, ridicule – and has, when the progress becomes obvious.

The Norwegian Labor Party – a colossus on clay feet

Then the movement breaks through, it gains power. And then comes the time of trials for each individual who has their share of this power.

With its 16 representatives in the Storting sits Socialist Election Association (SV) suddenly with an influence that few dared to dream of just a few months ago.

And now we have cheered long enough. The time has come for a vaccination against the dangers of power, the poisoning of people who previously toiled and sacrificed in the unknown, without thought of personal gain and prestige.

In Norway's political history we can read examples that should frighten: the greatness and annihilation of the Liberal Party, the Norwegian Labor Party in greatness, in failure towards basic ideas, in confusion and defeat.

Are we then to believe that the leading women and men in the Norwegian Confederation of Elections are immune to the bacilli of power, because so many of them stood close together in the cold of isolation for many years and then acquired essential human qualities, such as true camaraderie despite differences of opinion, contact with the grassroots – not as a tactical necessity, but a human need, the ability to conform to a community and step aside for the more capable instead of using pointed elbows?

From year to year, our people could learn from the developments in the major parties, above all the damaging effects of power in the Norwegian Labor Party, which in its long-lasting monopoly became a colossus on clay feet. Some of the significant experiences were these: A large party attracts fellow runners who are only looking for their own "advancement", who develop an apparatus that is centrally directed and relies on servile partisan sergeants out in the districts both in party teams and in the newspapers. People who can form an effective political army for a few years, but in the end become a disaster for their party, because they too want to mark their importance by giving a false image of the party's power locally.

Device people

In the Soviet Union, they are called "Apparatschikij" – the apparatus people, from the top to the ground level. In a dictatorship, they can function effectively for decades. In a democracy, they can soon become a disaster for the party.

In a while, the Socialist Electoral Association will become a Socialist Association, a party with considerable power and with good chances of even greater power. "A party that is here to stay," said the wise Right-winger Jon Lyng about the Confederation of Labor in an interview with Arbeiderbladet shortly after the election.

And we would be idiots if we did not expect that the dangers that have led many large parties to political-moral decay, sometimes with fatal outcomes, follow in the wake of power.

Perhaps it would have been an advantage if the Norwegian Confederation of Elections had not found itself in a tilting position in the Storting, which could soon create complicated situations. But rather given time for internal clarification, stabilization and a marking from the Storting's lectern of the new, socialist policy in Norway, without having to squint at the tipping of the scales together with the Norwegian Labor Party.

With the current situation, the demands on each of the 16 representatives are particularly high. I don't think much about the fact that Valgforbundet is a rapidly cobbled-together alliance between several parties, and that it entails a lengthy process with the formation of one party. It is now that each of the 16 must show their human qualities, which can be just as important as the ability to coordinate political theories for a new party.

We do not want to see pointed elbows in this group, nor any sergeant-majority in the grassroots organisations.

One of the bids in Aksel Sandemose's Jantelov reads: "You must not think that you are something".

We are not Janteloven's people. We say to our trustees in the Storting, in the central and national government and at the local level: You are something.

But not to become strivers. You are something, because we are becoming a mass movement and because you are suited to serve – yes serve this development, in permanent contact with the grassroots.

- self-advertisement -

Recent Comments:

Siste artikler

Our ill-fated fate (ANTI-ODIPUS AND ECOLOGY)

PHILOSOPHY: Can a way of thinking where becoming, growth and change are fundamental, open up new and more ecologically fruitful understandings of and attitudes towards the world? For Deleuze and Guattari, desire does not begin with lack and is not desire for what we do not have. Through a focus on desire as connection and connection – an understanding of identity and subjectivity as fundamentally linked to the intermediate that the connection constitutes. What they bring out by pointing this out is how Oedipal desire and capitalism are linked to each other, and to the constitution of a particular form of personal identity or subjectivity. But in this essay by Kristin Sampson, Anti-Oedipus is also linked to the pre-Socratic Hesiod, to something completely pre-Oedipal. MODERN TIMES gives the reader here a philosophical deep dive for thought.

A love affair with the fabric of life

FOOD: This book can be described like this: «A celebration of stories, poetry and art that explores the culture of food in a time of converging ecological crises – from the devouring agricultural machine to the regenerative fermenting jar.»

On the relationship between poetry and philosophy

PHILOSOPHY: In the book The Poetics of Reason, Stefán Snævarr goes against a too strict concept of rationality: To live rationally is not only to find the best means to realize one's goals, but also to make life meaningful and coherent. Parts of this work should enter all disciplines concerned with models, metaphors and narratives.

The glow of utopia

PHILOSOPHY: the problem with a hopeful optimism is that it does not take the current climate crisis seriously enough and ends up accepting the state of affairs. But is there a hope and a utopia that hides a creative and critical force? MODERN TIMES takes a closer look at German Ernst Bloch's philosophy of hope. For the German Ernst Bloch, one must rediscover the fire in our concrete experience that anticipates possible futures in the real here and now.

Revisiting the real machine room

NOW: Barely 50 years after the publication of Anti-Oedipus by Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, the work has not lost its relevance according to the Norwegian magazine AGORA's new theme issue. Anti-Oedipus has rather proved to be a prophetic and highly applicable conceptual toolbox for the examination of a financial and information capitalist contemporary. In this essay, reference is also made to the book's claim that there is no economy or politics that is not permeated to the highest degree by desire. And what about the fascist where someone is led to desire their own oppression as if it meant salvation?

Self-staging as an artistic strategy

PHOTO: Frida Kahlo was at the center of a sophisticated international circle of artists, actors, diplomats and film directors. In Mexico, she was early on a tehuana – a symbol of an empowered woman who represents a different ideal of women than that rooted in traditional marianismo. But can we also see the female stereotypes 'whore' and 'madonna' in one and the same person?

We live in a collective dream world

ESSAY: The Bible, according to Erwin Neutzsky-Wulff: The testaments in the Bible are related to a "peculiar mixture of Babylonian mythology, myths, and historical falsification". For him, no religion has produced as many monstrous claims as Christianity, and none has taken the same for self-evident truths to the same extent. Neutzsky-Wulff is fluent in ten languages ​​and claims that no external world is opposed to the internal. Moreover, with a so-called subjective 'I' we are prisoners in a somatic prison. Possible to understand?

Why do we always ask why men commit acts of violence, instead of asking why they don't allow it?

FEMICID: Murders of women do not only occur structurally and not only based on misogynistic motives – they are also largely trivialized or go unpunished.

I was completely out of the world

Essay: The author Hanne Ramsdal tells here what it means to be put out of action – and come back again. A concussion leads, among other things, to the brain not being able to dampen impressions and emotions.

Silently disciplining research

PRIORITIES: Many who question the legitimacy of the US wars seem to be pressured by research and media institutions. An example here is the Institute for Peace Research (PRIO), which has had researchers who have historically been critical of any war of aggression – who have hardly belonged to the close friends of nuclear weapons.

Is Spain a terrorist state?

SPAIN: The country receives sharp international criticism for the police and the Civil Guard's extensive use of torture, which is never prosecuted. Regime rebels are imprisoned for trifles. European accusations and objections are ignored.

Is there any reason to rejoice over the coronary vaccine?

COVID-19: There is no real skepticism from the public sector about the coronary vaccine – vaccination is recommended, and the people are positive about the vaccine. But is the embrace of the vaccine based on an informed decision or a blind hope for a normal everyday life?

The military commanders wanted to annihilate the Soviet Union and China, but Kennedy stood in the way

Military: We focus on American Strategic Military Thinking (SAC) from 1950 to the present. Will the economic war be supplemented by a biological war?


Bjørnboe: In this essay, Jens Bjørneboe's eldest daughter reflects on a lesser – known psychological side of her father.

Arrested and put on smooth cell for Y block

Y-Block: Five protesters were led away yesterday, including Ellen de Vibe, former director of the Oslo Planning and Building Agency. At the same time, the Y interior ended up in containers.

A forgiven, refined and anointed basket boy

Pliers: The financial industry takes control of the Norwegian public.

Michael Moore's new film: Critical to alternative energy

EnvironmentFor many, green energy solutions are just a new way to make money, says director Jeff Gibbs.

The pandemic will create a new world order

Mike Davis: According to activist and historian Mike Davis, wild reservoirs, like bats, contain up to 400 types of coronavirus that are just waiting to spread to other animals and humans.

The shaman and the Norwegian engineer

cohesion: The expectation of a paradise free of modern progress became the opposite, but most of all, Newtopia is about two very different men who support and help each other when life is at its most brutal.

Skinless exposure

Anorexia: shameless uses Lene Marie Fossen's own tortured body as a canvas for grief, pain and longing in her series of self portraits – relevant both in the documentary self Portrait and in the exhibition Gatekeeper.