some Norwegian hippie notes...

From: Tarjei Straume
Date: Sun Jan 18, 2004 2:48 pm
Subject: some Norwegian hippie notes...

As Danish police are tearing Christiania apart in order to wipe out the cannabis culture -,,2-10-1462_1465815,00.html - I'd like to share with you a related tale of my own from May of last year. As the great international Marijuana March scheduled for May 3, 2003 approached, and the demonstrators had asked permission to march through the king's park surrounding the royal castle, I wrote a mail to the royal family made public on my website (in Norwegian):

It was an appeal to the king that he permit the marijuana march to proceed to the royal park around the castle, to a particular section of this park called "Nisseberget", which means "the gnomes knoll" - a piece of grass that has special historical and sentimental value for old hippies. We used to sit there and smoke cannabis in the late sixties, and the royal guards had a habit of chasing us out - well, until one sunny summer day in 1967 or 1968, a gypsy friend of mine I used to hang out with in Oslo and Copehagen was with me and a small group of smokers at Nisseberget, and four of the king's men arrived in full armor, with swords and bayonettes and feathers in their hats, telling us to vacate the park. My gipsy friend refused, and he challenged them to remove him by force. Now, the chief knight - I'm not very good at such titles - ordered his three subordinates to grab my friend. We watched in astonishment as this hairy, unwashed, very small teenager wrestled all three of them to the ground, all at once! Their commanding officer cancelled the arrest order, then reinstated it, back and forth indecisively and confused, not recognizing that they were up against a small hippie with the strength of a Samson or Hercules. I was eighteen, and I believe he was the same age. Now he tells this commanding officer that he is a coward unless he puts down his sword, stops yelling at his subordinates, and does the job himself, man to man. The chief is a hot head and can't resist the challenge, subsequently being wrestled down just like the other three. (So there is a little anthroposophy in here after all, because this is almost mythological.) The wrestling - four big men, with hard military training, against one small dope-smoking teenager - goes on for about fifteen minutes. Then my friend, needing a rest, rns out of the park with the guards, or knights, at his heels. We watch the spectacle with open mouths.

Who won? If the king had been present in person, I believe my friend would have been knighted on the spot for his valiant stance against the king's own men, if Norway had not banned the gentry in 1905. The present-day monarch's tragedy is that he has no authority whatsoever except being the leader of the military and the ultimate head of the state church. He is continually being pushed around by the State Department, and after the incident described above, the king and his guards lost the jurisdiction over the royal park, which was then given to the city cops. (This was revealed to me by an insider about eight or nine years ago.) What a loss for the royal family, for the guards, and for the hippies! Now all the cat-and-mouse fun with the royal knights in armor was over, and there were brutal arrests, beatings in squad cars, and crooked undercover cops stealing people's weed. So I'm telling the king to order his staff to open the castle gates if the cops get out of hand during the march, letting the high demonstrators in and locking the police out, just like the king of Thailand once did during a demonstration, to prevent the police from beating up on his children. (It goes without saying that this made the king of Thailand immensely popular.) I'm also reminding the king (of Norway) what happened to queen Elizabeth a few years back - before Britain followed mainstream Europe by decriminalizing cannabis and marijuana recently. Somebody in the London crowd gave her a marijuana plant - out of joy and affection, of course. Her Majesty loved it, and she put it in the Buckingham Palace kitchen. Well now, the cops found out about it, raided the queen's royal kitchen, and confiscated the plant! Now, that's an insult against royalty if I ever saw one, so I'm advising the king to keep the cops off his properties and let the people smoke there if they feel like it.

The state church is a topic that brings me to the next point: In addition to the appeal I wrote to the king, the content of which is outlined above (including the story about my strong David/Samson/Hercules gypsy friend), I also wrote an appeal to the chief bishop, who is very left wing, very liberal (anti-war, pro-gay, etc.) and a very good and close friend of the royals, having stood for all their weddings and funerals and baptisms and what have you. I've been working on him, of course, trying to radicalize him a bit further by sending him a link to my 1995 article about anarchist Christianity (not available in English at this point, but a lot of it is based upon a chapter in the book "Demanding the Impossible: A History of Anarchism" by Peter Marshall:

Anyway, the fact that this bishop (Gunnar Stålseth) is very close to the royals informs me that their hearts are possibly a lot more liberal and radical than what is revealed, although I don't expect them to smoke weed on the castle balcony during marijuana marches, but it wouldn't surprise me if they secretly fancy the idea. So I told Stålseth - check out the layout here, even if you can't read the language:

....I told the bishop that the marijuana march needed his blessing, and that I'd asked the king to put in a good word for me to persuade him to show up and bless the march. Bless the Flower Children, and remenber that they're being persecuted by police and fascists, also in Norway, and that the WashIngton-and-the-Pentagon-Establishment has been waging war against the Flower Children for decades because they represent the diametrically opposite of the military-industrial complex.

Bishop Stålseth was on study leave, however, and it looked like the solemn task of blessing the marijuana march would fall upon the shoulders of pastor T. Straume of Futurum Ministries, namely Yours Truly, whom you can see blessing his flock about ten years ago:

Everything was publicized in the underground press, so I felt I had to show up (for the first time regarding this particular event). The king did give his permission for the march to proceed to Nisseberget, and this permission was apparently granted before my appeal. But when the hour arrived, Saturday May 3rd 2003 at 3:00 p.m, the weather was terribly foul with pouring rain and I wasn't burning anough for this cause to get all wet, because I live way out in one of the suburbs. So I let everybody down. I'll try to do better next time.




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