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Obama Should Sent It Back

(The Eastern Establishment editorial comment on President’s Obama’s surprise Nobel was unsurprising. The Wall Street Journal cattily noted that the wily Norwegians had really praised the end to “American exceptionalism” that they incorrectly pretend Obama represents and correctly believe Europe wishes. The New York Times was dutifully little engine that could liberal check-listing a lotta things to be done so the president would fulfill his praise from the far North. The increasingly braindead Congressional Republicans had white spittle in the cracks at the sides of their mouths in outrage so vehemently undefined that could they have they certainly would have voted for a war resolution to invade Norway just the way the Nazis did after the Nobel went to the imprisoned anti-Hitler journalist Carl von Ossietzky.

Such all for a peace prize funded by the coupon clippings of the inventor of dynamite and once awarded to the likes of the US war criminal Henry Kissinger which provoked the crown prince of satire Tom Lehrer to state: “It was at that moment that satire died. There was not more to say after that.” Obama was impressionably modest in declaring his freshman unworthiness for this senior honor but as usual he couldn’t close the deal. The only settled editorial comment on the piquancy of the Norwegians came from the Financial Times of London, reprinted immediately below, which concluded that the only appropriate thing for Obama to do about the hot potato prize would be to gracefully send it back, a suggestion in which the Argonaut heartily concurs. – Ed.)

“The Norwegian Nobel Committee has made odd decisions before. Awarding this year’s peace prize to Barack Obama, however, is not merely bizarre but bad: for Mr. Obama, the prize itself, and for the cause of world peace.

The prize has been adrift for a while. Some recent laureates, such as Muhammad Yunus and Wangari Maathai, received it for work (microfinance and tree planting) that only overgenerous interpretation can relate to peacemaking. But even these far-fetched decisions referred to work actually done. This is the first time that the prize is given for what remains, for now, mere aspirations.

Certainly, Mr. Obama has delivered some fine speeches, which have “created a new climate in international politics” as the Committee puts it. But the results on the ground are yet non-existent.

The citation lauds Mr. Obama’s vision of a nuclear-free world – but his work on nuclear disarmament is barely beginning. On Iran, more progress was made in eight hours last October 1st than in eight years under George W. Bush – but that places the bar awfully low. On Palestine, Mr. Obama has achieved only a snub by Israel’s prime minister. And he receives a prize created in part to reward reductions of standing armies as he is deciding how many more US soldiers to send to fight in Afghanistan.

Despite Mr. Obama’s undeniable diplomatic ambitions for a more peaceful world, there has simply been no time for him to realize or betray them. So – to borrow from his own rhetoric – why the fierce urgency of now?

The answer is a Nobel Committee tapped in an adolescent adulation of Mr. Obama that, if once shared by many, most have put behind them. Its continuing desire is to flatter a particular tendency in US politics – Al Gore and Jimmy Carter are recent laureates – risks painting it as an annex to the left wing of the US Democratic party. Hoping the prize will strengthen Mr. Obama domestically is deeply misguided: it will embarrass his allies and egg on his detractors.

Elsewhere, it will come to be seen as awarded for wishful thinking, not hard work. Peace is not served by devaluing the moral force of the prize, whose greatest impact has always been the moral support it can give to those who fight oppression with their lives – a von Ossietzky, a King or a Walesa – or leaders who make heavy concessions needed for peace. Mr. Obama has done neither. It is, however, in his hands to rescue the prize from itself – by declining it in deference to those more worthy than he.”

– Editorial, The Financial Times, October 10-11.

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3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Sean O'Neill // Oct 18, 2009 at 5:03 pm

    Since Nobel and Roades awards memorializes those enriched by debauchery, deceit, destruction and war, why should anyone be surprised at who gets them?

  • 2 Sean O'Neill // Oct 18, 2009 at 5:05 pm

    PS: People confuse Nobel with its opposite – noble.

  • 3 Triessego // Nov 8, 2010 at 4:38 am

    Geezer, I am searching the internet and bump into uncover some elevated communications position as forums, blogs. Could you give me some suggestion?

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