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Where's Our Nobel?

You will recall that Time magazine has occasionally given its “Person of the Year” award not to individuals but to collectives: Smart, Well-Coiffed Young People; Financiers With Conscience (given collectively because no individual financiers with conscience could actually be identified); and, if memory serves, You (the cover that year featured a sort-of-mirror; I recall thinking on the day I was named that I needed a shave).

The Nobel Peace Prize committee should have followed Time’s lead. Barack Obama's chief achievement, so far, is having stated the aspirations and ideals he brings to the office of president -- and being elected based on those articulated aspirations and ideals. That’s not a criticism; after all, he just got to the White House. And it's an achievement that the Nobel Committee, virtually all of Europe, and most of the civilized world plainly welcomed. But that said, shouldn’t the Nobel have gone not just to Obama but to the American electorate? Fundamentally, it's a statement of gratitude for America opting to end the Bush years, spare the world a continuation of Republican belligerent provincialism, and rejoin the reality-based community of nations. Shouldn’t we all get that award? At least those of us who live in states Obama carried? At minimum, those of us who voted for him?

The Nobel Committee, we should remember, has made far more dubious calls in past years. Henry Kissinger? I doubt many Cambodians would sign on to that one. But Obama, I’d argue, makes perfect sense so long as you remember his real accomplishment was ending Republican control of the world’s only superpower. But he couldn’t have done it without us. Where’s our prize, O Wizards of Oslo?

By Harold Meyerson  | October 9, 2009; 4:02 PM ET
Categories:  Meyerson  | Tags:  Harold Meyerson  
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Comments

Obama got the Nobel for restoring international relations to normal after eight years of war, torture, and criminality under Bush and Cheney.

That was not guaranteed to happen, for example President Palin would not have done it.

The end result of Obama's reforms will be felt in the future, but it's not unreasonable to award him the Nobel now for putting us back on the right path.

Posted by: ottoparts | October 9, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse

You're right that Obama deserves the prize for driving the neocons out of the White House - a major contribution to world peace.

But the American people don't deserve one. First off, the "real Americans" - the whites - voted majority Republican as they do in every election.

Secondly, 79% of Americans supported the invasion of Iraq. That's totally disqualifying, obviously.

Finally, the American people RE-ELECTED George Bush. That suggests a need for some kind of remedial education, not a prize.

There is no doubt that Obama will work hard to further the cause of world peace. There's also no doubt that the biggest obstacle he will face on that road will be the warlike, jingoistic, militaristic American public, who continue to believe they have the right to dominate and control the planet through military force.

Posted by: bourassa1 | October 9, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

President Obama DID share the award with us. From an email minutes ago from Obama:

"... This award -- and the call to action that comes with it -- does not belong simply to me or my administration; it belongs to all people around the world who have fought for justice and for peace. And most of all, it belongs to you, the men and women of America, who have dared to hope and have worked so hard to make our world a little better."

Posted by: nseattle | October 9, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

I guess doing more to fight AIDS in Africa than any president before him STILL won't redeem Pres. Bush.

Posted by: srpinpgh | October 9, 2009 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Ha! Obama gets the Liberal's Nobel Prize for not being Bush!

I would love to see some further investigation into Obama's trip to Copenhagen. It's to far fetched to think it was really to give Chicago a shot over Rio! Now it appears, showing up in the region made him eligible for losing - second place gets the Nobel Prize.

Liberals are always good for some chuckles!

Posted by: 2009frank | October 9, 2009 6:08 PM | Report abuse

when are you going to stop kissing O'bama's ass, when we lose Americas credit rating soon, or when the country falls apart. Gold is high, the dollar is weak, real estate, and jobs are gone. But the market is up. I don't get it. O'bama bought his house in Chicago through some shady deal from Resco, who is currently in prison. Maybe he is giving us peace this way.

Posted by: come2 | October 9, 2009 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Once again...can somebody illuminate us as to who and/or how the President was even nominated? I don't think this is an irrational question. There must have been a nomination package written. Who wrote it? On who's authority? Who submitted it? Did the President authorize it? If so, why? If he did his own authorizing for such a prestigious award with absolutely no 'there, there' then how can he stand and say he's 'surprised and humbled?' If he didn't think he had a chance, then why was a package submitted in the first place? Did someone get some sort of back-room suggestion from the Nobel committee that should a particular person get nominated...then he would probably win?

Posted by: PanhandleWilly | October 9, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

I have to quote this, as I couldn't have said it better:

Posted by: bourassa1:

You're right that Obama deserves the prize for driving the neocons out of the White House - a major contribution to world peace.

But the American people don't deserve one. First off, the "real Americans" - the whites - voted majority Republican as they do in every election.

Secondly, 79% of Americans supported the invasion of Iraq. That's totally disqualifying, obviously.

Finally, the American people RE-ELECTED George Bush. That suggests a need for some kind of remedial education, not a prize.

There is no doubt that Obama will work hard to further the cause of world peace. There's also no doubt that the biggest obstacle he will face on that road will be the warlike, jingoistic, militaristic American public, who continue to believe they have the right to dominate and control the planet through military force.


.

Posted by: Frank57 | October 9, 2009 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Obama did not give this award to himself. It was voted on LEGALLY and given to him. And I am so ashamed that the republicans are being given space on TV, the internet and in the news to slam and whine about this.

Since the day they lost the election they have done nothing but whine and moan and mess their pants. Instead of acting like real Americans, they act like residents of a third world country. They post messages about overthrowing the government. The urge residents to take guns to rallys, why so during the disruption they could shoot at Obama. The nutso right wing preachers pray that he gets brain cancer.

Did anybody ever ever ever see any Democrats on TV, the internet or in the papers do any of this things about bush. They all called him a dictator, he was to a certain extent. They had fits because he started a war against an innocent country, he did. But they never urged fellow Americans to kill him, they never urged fellow Americans to overthrow the government. This just goes to show the mind set of the republican party. They are a bunch of violent, hate filled, greedy war monglers and the sooner this country kicks them ALL out of office the sooner we can start to really be on the road to recovery.

Posted by: msealock | October 9, 2009 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Like I said the Kanye Wests' are trying to snatch the victory and the moment from the winner even before the Pres made his acceptance speech. What a bunch of hypocrites and Jockasses

Posted by: MILLER123 | October 9, 2009 9:22 PM | Report abuse

An ordinary person becomes part of history by just living through it, completely unaware. An extraordinary person see it for what it really is: history. We Americans should be the latter more often but I fear that our short sightedness will always get the better of us. Some of our bitter reactions to President Obama getting the Nobel Peace Prize will certainly make us ordinary momentarily.

Posted by: AMQ1 | October 9, 2009 10:14 PM | Report abuse

The Nobel Prize is nothing more than Liberals giving other Liberals and Terrorists an award.

It loses more and more of its meaning everytime they do something like this.
The Nobel is about on the same level as the Nick At Night TVLand Awards.

Posted by: HawkSprings | October 9, 2009 11:57 PM | Report abuse

Rave on Harold. We know that if Congress had enforced the peace treaty that Dr. Kissinger had formulated, the killing fields of Cambodia would have remained calm. Only the left blames us for that one. But they have to, since they blame us for everything.

Posted by: gary4books | October 10, 2009 6:14 AM | Report abuse


I don't think Americans have a clue about how people around the world really felt watching America launch a global version of McCarthyism.

Most were amazed and relieved to see someone bring that growing reign of "with us or against us" extremism come to an end.

..

Posted by: DEFJAX | October 10, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

I intend to be an influential journalist that reports significant revelations that bring new hope of health and prosperity to the world.

Where is my Pulitzer?

Posted by: 2009frank | October 10, 2009 6:57 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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