The "No"bel Peace Prize

President Barack Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize today, nine months after he took office, for ... I'm not sure what, but it has been very impressive. He was nominated for the award a mere 12 days after taking office. Seriously. He hadn't chosen the first mutt yet in 12 days. Hence, the "No"bel Prize.

Everyone else is saying it, so I'm not adding much to it - I'm aware of that. Some interesting quotes, though.

In an article at
"Remember that the Nobel prize has a long history of being awarded more for the committee's aspirations than for others' accomplishments -- for Mideast peace or a better South Africa, for instance.

In those cases, the prize is awarded to encourage those who receive it to see the effort through, sometimes at critical moments."

So, the award is for those who talk about what the committee wants to hear? For a million dollars, I'll say whatever they want.

Some quotes from

"Well, apparently I didn't recognize that gesture to bring the white cop and the black professor together for a beer for the stunning breakthrough that it was." - James Gimpel - Professor of Political Science, Maryland


"In related news, LeBron James was today awarded next year’s NBA Championship. Although the season has not yet officially begun, basketball experts agree that LeBron’s extraordinary skills, his work ethic and commitment to winning, and his successful efforts to bring Shaquille O’Neal as his new teammate this past summer justify the breaking of precedent and presented him with the 2009-2010 title based on their hopes for his success in this year’s league play." - Dan Schnur, USC


"Of course, the Peace Prize is and always has been a way to honor people who embody the political views/aspirations of the committee that bestows it. But anyone who criticizes giving the award to Obama should realize that those politics are rather expansive.

Sure Rigoberta Menchu and Al Gore and Nelson Mandela have won it but so have Henry Kissinger, Lech Walesa, and F.W. De Klerk. And the last sitting president to win the prize jailed thousands of Americans for peacefully opposing World War I and was unable to get the Senate to ratify the peace treaty he had largely drafted. So the Peace Prize is often given more for intentions than results. And Obama's intentions are certainly as peaceful and praiseworthy as those of many past recipients." - Michael Kazin, Professor of History, Georgetown


"A (liberal) friend wrote: 'And this is only after one year in office. (Heck), it took Christ 33 years to get the job done....' " - Bill Bishop, Editor and author


"What's surprising -- and puzzling -- about the award is the absence of peace somewhere that can be traced to President Obama, including among congressional Democrats. Perhaps making nice with Hillary counts." - Thomas Fiedler, Dean, Boston University College of Communication


"Critics may say, "he hasn't done anything!", but they miss the point. He has. His election, itself, has sent a powerful message to the world, restoring belief in America's promise." - James Zogby, President, American Arab Institute


"The vote is clearly an international referendum on the Bush presidency. I do hope that President Obama lives up to this honor." - Timothy Stoltzfus Jost, Law Professor at the Washington and Lee University

There are more, and they're worth reading, but two things seems clear:

  1. The award is for what he's talked about doing, not what he's actually done.
  2. The award is more about him being NotBush, and not for being Obama.

Mostly, it's a disappoitment. The "No"bel prize really means nothing anymore.

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