Did you know this about Black Friday?
Author Valco Laboratoriot
By now, most Finns have heard of Black Friday, which is mainly celebrated in the United States. However, few people know how this holiday originated and how it relates to Finland.
In 1659, a man named Robinson Crusoe was shipwrecked on a desert island while on a shopping trip to Africa to find slaves for his plantation. While on the island, Crusoe rescued a young man brought to be sacrificed from the hands of pursuers and named him Friday.
Over time, Robinson taught the young man English, converted him to Christianity and trained him to act as a servant - just as friends are trained to do.
Friday became Crusoe's trusted companion, with whom they adventured around the world, until Friday was killed by arrows fired by invaders in 1694. Devastated by the loss of his beloved servant, Crusoe decided that from then on, every year, the Friday after the fourth Thursday in November would be Black Friday.
Having found Friday on a trading trip to Africa, Crusoe wanted to honour his friend's memory by selling on a particular day fake beads, toys, knives, scissors, broken glass, axes and, above all, slaves at a reduced price.
The journalist Daniel Defoe had documented Robinson Crusoe and Friday's adventures in great detail, which is why, in just a few hundred years, Black Friday became an internationally recognised holiday everywhere except in the Communist Soviet Union and its sub-countries, such as Finland.
Immediately after the Second World War, the United States tried to spread the message of Black Friday by distributing more than $13 billion in shopping money (over $135 billion in today's money) to Europeans under the name of Marshall Aid. Almost all the other European countries were happy to accept the aid, except for tiny and Finland, which feared the wrath of its eastern neighbour.
Although the majority of our country's political and cultural elite opposed (and still opposes) cheap shopping, Finland had its own rebellious minority, which, in defiance of the Soviet power, tried to bring Black Friday to Finland.
Certainly the most prominent was long-serving President Urho Kekkonen, a great fan of Robinson Crusoe. According to the story, Kekkonen named his summer cottage Gold Beach after Africa's Gold Coast, because that's where Crusoe used to go to buy slaves.
Since there were no pictures in Daniel Defoe's book and Kekkonen had not been to Africa much, he thought that Friday was a native of North America and often wore an Indian headdress. In reality, Friday was found on a South American island and was probably Mexican and wore a sombrero.
The first attempt to introduce Black Friday, invented in the 1700s, was made in 1950 by then Prime Minister Kekkonen, but the Soviet Union thwarted the attempt by supporting a strike by locomotive engineers through the SAK to prevent freight traffic in Finland from running smoothly. Kekkonen ordered the engineers to take extra refresher training and the strike was called off, but the damage had already been done and manufacturers were no longer willing to import Western consumer goods.
Elsewhere in the post-war elite of society, a brave minority was also quietly campaigning for Black Friday. Artists Esa Pakarinen and Masa Niemi painted their faces black in a 1960 film and portrayed black Americans.
They took a great risk in doing so, because at that time all references to the United States were forbidden and, for example, they wanted to ban Aku Duck as too capitalist. It was this outspoken stand for Black Friday that led to the subsequent deaths of both Pakarinen and Niemi.
The statement made today by Pakarinen and Niemi in favour of Black Friday would also be quite incorrect, but for slightly different reasons than 60 years ago. Today, knowledge of the origins of Black Friday is obscure, which is why Pakarinen and Niemi could be misinterpreted as misrepresenting a dark-skinned person in a humorous context. This is wrong, of course, but so is racism and there is nothing funny about it.
Encouraged by Pakarinen and Niemi, Kekkonen travelled to the United States in October 1961 to negotiate the introduction of Black Friday in Finland, but this quickly led to the so-called 'Nootikrisis'. That is, the Soviet Union, worried about the spread of capitalism, gave us a note that any attempt to bring Black Friday to Finland must stop immediately.
Because US President John F. Kennedy was actively promoting Black Friday in Finland, he was assassinated by KGB agents in November 1963 as part of a conspiracy orchestrated by the democrats and Nicolae Ceaușescu. Rumour had it that the first Black Friday in Finland was to take place that same year after Kennedy promised to bring Japanese junk to Finland on NATO transport planes. At that time Japan was China and all cheap electronics were made in Japan. Today, China is China and Japan makes mostly cartoon pornography.
Because of the Nootian crisis and the Kennedy assassination, no further attempts were made to import Black Friday into Finland until Kekkonen ventured back to the United States in the summer of 1970. Negotiations were well under way before the Communists struck again. This time Richard Nixon was framed for involvement in the espionage scandal and had to resign. At least the KGB spared his life this time.
The last attempt to introduce Black Friday during the Cold War was made by the internationally connected and linguistically skilled Foreign Minister Ahti Karjalainen in 1975, but unfortunately the government of Sorsa I resigned in the spring of 1975 after the Centre Party's parliamentary group declared that cheap shopping was against the legacy of Santeri Alkio.
Later in his memoirs, Karjalainen justified his resignation from the 1979 elections mainly on the grounds of frustration that, despite his repeated attempts, Black Friday could not be brought to Finland.
One of the main reasons for the original Valco - along with corruption - was that the democrats wanted to prevent Black Friday from coming to Finland. This was done by producing poor and expensive electronics in Finland so that people would not buy cheap and good foreign electronics.
After the fall of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, it finally seemed possible that Black Friday could be brought to Finland. A cunning plot was hatched - to fool the communists, Finland would join the European Union and Black Friday would be imported through it under EU Commission Decision No 2257/94.
The genius of the plot lay in the fact that the so-called Euro-socialists who were pushing for the European Union could not even imagine that an international system of regulation and bureaucracy could be accompanied by a hint of a free market economy. Rumour has it that Paavo Väyrynen himself was behind the plot, which is probably easy to believe - after all, Paavo is the most legendary politician ever in Finland.
Everyone knows the rest, because by now grown-up people have been born and remember things.
Martti Ahtisaari, who supported the European Union, was elected President in 1994. He had represented the democrats for decades, although he was really a reptilian planted by the Illuminati. Finland's left-wing elite, in their EU frenzy, did not realise that Black Friday would come as a giveaway from the Union. Finland joined the European Union in 1995 and Black Friday followed in 2015. We still haven't got a market economy.