In late April and early May of 2012, the Norwegian government and the National Farmers Union were negotiating about governmental support for agriculture. The National Farmers Union asked for 2.2 billion kroner in subsidies and other support to farmers, but when the government offered only 900 million kroner ($152 million USD) the union cut off the negotiations completely—the first time the union had done so since the year 2000. The union argued that the proposed government subsidies would have widened the wage gap between farmers and other sectors of the economy.
The kingdom of Denmark ruled Norway until May 1814, when Sweden defeated Denmark in the Napoleonic Wars. On 4 November 1814, Sweden took control of Norway, and the United Kingdoms of Sweden and Norway shared a Swedish monarch. Still, Norway retained its own separate governing body for local affairs.
Norway's Venstre Party and other liberal groups gained the support of the working class. In 1884, the Venstre Party formed the Norwegian Labor Association, bringing together industry workers and agricultural workers in one organization.
Artificial baby milks—so called “infant formula”—became widespread commercial product during the early decades of the twentieth century. Among many companies involved, Nestlé’s was the biggest promoter, controlling more than 40% of the estimated $1.72 billion market. Nestle aggressively pursued the interest from infant formula with indiscriminate marketing. The marketing that evoked popular indictment was their promotion of infant formula in the Third World.
In the latter part of the nineteenth century Norway was marginal in Europe, a part of the Swedish kingdom, with a scarcity of resources, little industrial development, and massive poverty. Although the country had parliamentary forms, it was ruled by the owning class; the Norwegian army was used to suppress strikes.
Following a rapid price increase and in turn wage increases (thanks to Union pressures), after the first half of 1920 prices in Norway began to rapidly fall. From 1919-1920, the cost of living rose by 16 percent, and in the subsequent period dropped 8 percent. Following the war, imports rose quickly and amounted to a surplus, marking the beginning of a turbulent global economy throughout the 1920s. Bankruptcies began to increase among businesses, feeling pressured by wage agreements and high interest rates.
Norway was invaded by the Nazis on April 9, 1940. Within two months, the Nazis had crushed Norwegian military resistance and installed a puppet government. Norwegians responded to the occupation of their country both nonviolently and violently. Because of the unprovoked aggression that the Nazis unleashed upon them, many Norwegians felt that all forms of resistance were fully legitimate. However, most saw nonviolent resistance as the only practical option, given the massive military advantage of the occupying military forces.
Located inside the Arctic Circle in northern Norway, the Alta River runs through the reindeer herding grounds of the indigenous Saami people. In 1970, the Norwegian Water Resources and Electricity Board proposed a hydroelectric dam on the river. The proposed dam, which would have completely submerged the Saami village of Masi and interrupted reindeer migration routes, was only the latest affront in a long history of Norway’s marginalization of its indigenous peoples.