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Obama wins 2009 Nobel Peace Prize

 
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 04:33 pm
@saab,
saab wrote:

The other Nobel Prizes are given to people for what they have done, not for what they think, promise or hope to accomplish. Why should it be different for the Peace Prize?

Because it's a private organization, and they can do what they like.
Robert Gentel
 
  3  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 05:11 pm
@DrewDad,
This reminds me of the whole Kennedy replacement arguments you used. Yes, they have the right to, but that isn't really the point of this discussion.

For example, anyone has a right to make a movie (say, Pulp Fiction) however they want, but typically people are able to discuss things like whether they "should" have cast a particular actor, or whether they "should" have used a certain plot device without resorting to this kind of rebuttal. Of course they can do whatever they like, the discussion is about how much sense it makes.
wandeljw
 
  4  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 05:21 pm
Quote:
The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded by a committee of five, appointed by the Storting (the Norwegian parliament). According to the rules laid down by the Storting, election to the committee is for a six-year term, and members can be re-elected. The committee’s composition reflects the relative strengths of the political parties in the Storting.


In recent decades, as everyone knows, Norway has been overrun by immigrants from Hawaii, Kenya, and Chicago. Therefore the selection of Obama mirrors Norway's changing culture.
spendius
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 05:23 pm
@wandeljw,
"Overrun" is a bit crude wande.
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 05:35 pm
@nimh,
nimh wrote:

What action do you feel Obama has undertaken so far that would be equivalent to, say, Brandt's dramatic gesture of apology when he genuflected in Warsaw at the monument for the Warsaw uprising?

What historical foreign policy move do you feel Obama has made that would be comparable to Brandt's, at the time still highly controversial, recognition of Germany's Oder-Neisse border?

Brandt did not just get the Nobel Prize in the hope that awarding it to him would create possible positive effects in the future. He got it because he had already made several historical moves that did much to entrench prospects of lasting peace in Europe. What has Obama done, so far, that would merit as definitive a prize as the Nobel Peace Prize should be?

You're trying to make this into some left vs right issue - e.g. when you mock Maporsche by turning traditional Bush/GOP-type talking points about patriotism against him (which is already somewhat misplaced since Maporsche never liked Bush, but whatever). But it's not about that. This thread is full of lefties and liberals who also think the award was premature and unserious.


I don't agree. I believe the Obama - Brandt comparison is apt. Brandt got his for changing the context for the political dialogue and key elements of the foreign policy of his government. Same with Obama. Brandt's award occured long before it was clear what might be the long range significance of his acts: same with Obama. Brandt and his new ideas were received very favorably in Norway & Sweden (possibly a factor in the selection - certainly an indicator of likely Trustee views): same with Obama.

Just what constitutes "worthiness for a Nobel Peace Prize"?? It is after all merely the action of the trustees of a fund crerated by a very successful Swedish inventor and manufacturer who made his great fortune serving the appetites of competing European Powers during a prolongued arms race in the late 19th century - one that later culminated in the ghastly destruction of WWI.

Obama didn't engineer the selection, so if you deem him "unworthy" that certainly isn't his fault. His star power veryl likely was a factor - perhaps small - in his selection. So was the likelihood that his actions conformed to the prejudices of the trustees who selected him. If you don't like the selection, blame them.
maporsche
 
  2  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 05:46 pm
@georgeob1,
georgeob1 wrote:

If you don't like the selection, blame them.


I think everyone is obviously blaming them; and not Obama.

I don't think anyone is even angry about this choice; if they are it'd be a silly thing to be angry about. What people are is surprised, shocked, and like Nimh said "WTF?".

This opinion, written by George Packer, who writes for the New Yorker, I agree with and this was my main point/concern earlier.

Quote:

Beware Premature Prizes

President Obama should thank the Nobel committee and ask them to hold on to the Peace Prize for a couple more years. The prize should be awarded for achievement, not aspiration, and so far Obama’s main achievement has been getting elected President, which is in a different category. He shouldn’t contribute to the unfair accusation that he is all talk by accepting an award based on speeches he gave in Berlin, Prague, and Cairo. Europeans’ relief in seeing the last of George W. Bush and their adoration of Obama are entirely understandable, but in the U.S. we've moved on from November 4, 2008, and these days Obama is"in a way that's both inevitable and healthy"a working President, with his share of troubles and mistakes, who is trying to get some difficult things done but hasn’t come close to accomplishing them yet. This seems like a prize for Europeans, not Americans, and I worry that at home it will damage him politically by reinforcing the notion that he is"and will be"a world icon rather than a successful President. I don’t mind him being the former, but I most want him to be the latter. Not even a Rookie of the Year is ready to be elected to the Hall of Fame. I’m afraid this prize will be bad for Obama. For political reasons and on the merits, he should paraphrase Shakespeare to the Nobel committee: “As you shall prove me, praise me.”
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 05:58 pm
@maporsche,
I don't agree. If the selection was premature or if it is seen as "cheapening" the award, that is the fault of the trustees. Moreover, if so, this should suggest that we consider the possibility that a fame-addicted world media have given this award more prestige than it ever really merited. In that case - nothing new has really been lost.

Whether the award aids or harms President Obama in his domestic politics is neither the business of the trustees nor anything we could expect them to be very proficient in assessing. To suggest that they shouldn't have nade the award because it might harm him politically implies that you see the Nobel prize as merely a pawn in the game of left wing politics. That may be true to some extent, but I'll bet the Nobel trustees would resent the suggestion.

Finally, it is up to President Obama to accept or reject the award. To have rejected it as premature would appear either churlish or wildly egotistical and manipulative - not a particularly good set of choices for one who did not actively seek or lobby for the award. In short he had little option but to accept it in the best way he could, and I believe he has done that.
maporsche
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 06:04 pm
@georgeob1,
georgeob1 wrote:

In short he had little option but to accept it in the best way he could, and I believe he has done that.


I agree that his speech regarding the award was great. Like many of his speeches. He said everything that I would have hoped he would say.

I don't think politely turning it down was out of the question though.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 06:08 pm
@spendius,
You can't possibly believe he was serious, can you?
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 06:13 pm
@wandeljw,
Quote:
Norway has been overrun by immigrants from Hawaii, Kenya, and Chicago


VADDYA TINKA DA BEARSSS OLEY?
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 06:53 pm
@maporsche,
maporsche wrote:

I don't think politely turning it down was out of the question though.


Certainly not out of the question, as you say. However, doing so would have presented some difficult challenges for the President, and in any event would have posed serious risk of misinterpretation or exploitation by his political opponents. Since he did nothing to solicit the award, he had no obligation to expose himself to such risk merely to spare the Nobel trustees some embarassment or criticism.

I do agree that the award may reflect some political prejudices on the part of the Trustees (and possibly Europeans generally) and may even be partly motivated on their part to influence American politics in a way that they prefer. The pious pretenses that surround this award don't impress me much, so even that doesn't strike me as particularly remarkable.
0 Replies
 
OCCOM BILL
 
  6  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 07:06 pm
I’d say the Nobel people chose Obama in recognition of the majority of Americans for picking the President that the majority of the world was pulling for… and said pulling was due in no small part because they believed his diplomacy would be head and shoulders above that of his predecessor. I seem to recall seeing televised dancing in the streets, in the four corners of the world, when Obama was elected President, which was quite a pivot from the reelection of Bush just 4 years earlier. His message of “hope” was very far reaching indeed, and I believe that is what they’re recognizing in their selection.

Having elected a black man, named Barack Hussein Obama no less, to the highest station in the land, has to make it a little more difficult for our enemies to view us as baby-eaters who, given a chance, would do away with every culture but our own. Regardless of politics, or whether or not he ever lives up to his promise, the election of Obama was a tremendous step in our evolution as a people. Millions of people took active rolls in bringing this evolution about; but it simply wouldn’t have happened without Barack Obama’s courage and purpose in seeking the highest office in the land in the first place.

My initial shock… with a “WTF?” has given way to understanding and now complete agreement with the selection.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 07:06 pm
@farmerman,
Olga, a fine, big strappin' girl like you, you should play with the Greenbay Packers . . .

Oh no . . . i only play with Erik's packer . . .
0 Replies
 
panzade
 
  2  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 07:26 pm
@OCCOM BILL,
nice post
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 07:51 pm
@Setanta,
I suspect that, if the analysis I hear was correct, and it gave lots of quotes from the WH supporting the hypothesis, that it's more about recognizing that Afghanistan is a tribal society, where various tribes will always vie for power, and that a stable and nicely democratic gov'mint isn't a viable exit strategy.

The thesis was that there's, sadly, (my interjection...I think the Taliban are horrendous) "no getting rid of the Taliban, and the Northern Alliance ain't much better (in some ways worse, according to RAWA) and that it doesn't matter who is the elected leader, he's gonna be hopelessly corrupt like the current one....and no western power ever had any success in Afghanistan and it's a morass, so...as long as Al Quaida don't have a powerful presence there, how do we (the US) get out..."
2PacksAday
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 08:25 pm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZ5SVDYBNrY

Couldn't resist....but honestly, I agree with what Bill said.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 08:27 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Robert Gentel wrote:
This reminds me of the whole Kennedy replacement arguments you used. Yes, they have the right to, but that isn't really the point of this discussion.

For me, it is.

So many "conservatives" make a huge deal about getting government out of their lives. They're "independent" and "self-reliant", and the thing that holds America back is everyone being in their business.

But they're all about telling other people how to live their lives.
Robert Gentel
 
  4  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 10:01 pm
@DrewDad,
You must be a contortionist by day.
OCCOM BILL
 
  1  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 10:11 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Laughing
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 9 Oct, 2009 11:35 pm
@dlowan,
This civil war is more than 40 years old now, and it was politico-ideological to begin with, and not either religiously nor tribally based. These are roughly the same arguments used to justify a corrupt government in Russia, and the governments of minority tribes in so many other countries. I don't buy that this sort of thing is inevitable. Pakistan is a shaky example, but an example nonetheless that it is possible to erect a reasonably efficient government within a tribal and Islamic society.

If they're peddling that, then they ain't simply naive, they stupid and lazy--looking for an excuse to take the easy way out.
0 Replies
 
 

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