Listen, I hate discussing politics. I used to enjoy it but I found that it was terribly divisive. If I thought politicians in one party where better than politicians in another party I may give it more attention. All I have seen thus far is that Barack Obama is doing a whole bunch of things that George W. Bush did and that a “super-majority” of Democrats doesn’t appear any different that one with Republicans.
As one friend of mine has alluded toward politics in the United States in divided between Democrats and Republicans. One is to the left of one; one is to the right of one. It should be noted though that Tokyo is “east” (and “west” for that matter) of New York and so is London, but the distance between New York and London is not the same as New York and Tokyo. Likewise, Republicans and Democrats may appear far apart, but this is only vague perception.
I have digressed because this is not about American political parties. This is about global values. I voted for Barack Obama. I am still pretty convinced that he was a better choice than John McCain. I think his election was a great moment for our country in that it represented a superficial transition regarding race in the history of this country. But I do not think he is some sort of messianic figure and I think every day Americans who did are realizing he is but a mere man.
Let me echo what Blake Huggins wrote via Twitter in response to our President winning the coveted Nobel Peace Prize: “if the president of the US winning the nobel peace “prize” signifies anything it is that we haven’t a clue what peace really is”. I know the job of the President of the United States of America is not an ecclesiastical office. He is not a bishop. He is the leader of a nation. He has responsibilities I could not handle and he knows things I could not bare to know. I respect the man and his office. But the Nobel Peace Prize???
Isn’t that an award you give to someone like Mahatma Gandhi?! Since when does the president of a nation that is involved in war all the time symbol peace? What is peaceful about Americans in Afghanistan, Iraq, here, there, and everywhere? Sure, the Pax Romana and even the Pax Americana is better than chaos. Sure, Iraq had a crazy dictator. Afghanistan has insane religious militants. Iran has a president who denies the historical reality of the Holocaust. But peace is not policing, per se, and we are policing (for the better or for the worse).
Again, I hope Barack Obama has a great several years as the President of this nation. I wanted George W. Bush to do well too. I hope who ever comes after Obama does well (even if it is that one nutty woman from Alaska). I am an American, I like my life, and I think as far as human government is concerned we do a decent job. But we are not a peaceful people.
See also: Obama Nobel Prize ‘A Farce’: Liberal Thinker
See also: First Things, “The Nobles Prince of Peace”
See also: Jim West announces “Nobel” prizes given to bibliobloggers here.
Perhaps you think GW Bush a self described “Christian” deserved it for starting a war based on lies? GW Bush started these wars BTW- and they’ve killed thousands upon thousands of innocent people- Obama inherited them and all the USA’s current problems from the most useless president the USA has ever had; “Christian” GW Bush!
Your comment makes little sense in light of what I have written in this post. (1) This has nothing to do with G.W. Bush’s “Christianity”. (2) Obama also confesses to be a Christian. (3) I like Obama better than G.W. Bush. (4) Obama inherited these wars but he also made a campaign promise to put an end to them as well. This doesn’t appear to be something he is going to fulfill. (5) I know these wars have killed thousands of people, which is why I do not understand how an American president can receive this prize!
I want to know what the “criteria” is exactly to win of those Nobel prizes… maybe I can win one.
Firstly i want to say that everyone who was nominated for that award deserves it they have all done great things and this includes Obama. Obama is changing the way America the most powerful nation in the world approaches other nations. Yet here in American we are soo narrow minded we tend to over look this, We tend to think our views are the only ones that count and are right. Well it looks like the majority of the rest world sees Obama as doing a good job at bringing more peace to it, although i was somewhat suprised at the decision, what he has done, his ideas and aims to do does merit the award. this is a World award so it showed be viewed from a world stand point, maybe we Americans should think instead of me me me about the views of others for once.
This may be true a few years from now but as I understand it he was nominated during his twelfth day in office. That makes no sense to me. And his desire to do things differently is not the same as actually doing things differently. I really, really hope that this is something we can all agree upon in retrospect. Maybe Iraq, Afghanistan, and Iran will all look different by the time Obama walks away from office. But this was way too early.
Sure, this is a world award, but it was a committee that made the decision. I am not sure how that makes the whole world as affirming of the choice. If we here in America don’t think he has done enough to earn it yet I do not see how people all over the world who interact with candidates all over the world would see Obama as the right choice.
I could not possibly agree more. My other issue is that giving it to someone who was nominated after 12 days in office is it truly devalues the legitimacy of the prize. Think of all the winners who spent their blood, sweat and tears (literally in many cases) for YEARS to win this prize. (Mother Theresa, Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu etc etc. Awarding him the prize truly cheapens this honor for those who have actually done something. Like you, I hope he accomplishes great things, but as of right now, he’s entirely undeserving.
i would just like to say obama did absolutely nothing to deserve this award as of now. He has not even been in office a full year, and the only thing anyone has heard is his “plan of action” which is yet to be “acted”upon. i now consider this award a total joke
That is a good point. The value of the award is based on what it took to earn it in the past. This decision does not parallel previous choices. Again, as my wife said to me on the phone today, if it occurred after he leaves office and things look different, then he should be considered.
Jim West is handing some out over @ his blog for bloggers. Maybe you can ask him?! 🙂
i will agree that i believe it was a bit early for them to give him the award, but what he has done i will say looking at some of the past winners and the reasons cannot be argued with. im looking specifically at 2007 winners which was Al gore and co and the reason for thier win was “for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change, and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change.”
What he has said and done on the international scene can be seen as laying the foundations for a more peaceful future. his out-reaching to other nations can become something huge in terms of peace.
When it comes to the rest of the world look at how Americas standing has improved throughout the world. as i said in my first comment all of the people nominated deserve a prize as they have all contributed to peace. What its bad is how people say he has done nothing to merit the award when he has,although there were some candidates who i thought were better it doesnt take away the fact that Obama has done or started something great in terms of peace. Now im not saying there is still not a long way to go.
in 1971 WILLY BRANDT won the noble peace prize for Federal Republic of Germany, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, initiator of West Germany’s Ostpolitik, embodying a new attitude towards Eastern Europe and East Germany. The idea that Visions and changing a nations attitude is something important and should be considered for the peace prize.
I think that there should be more time given to see if a vision comes to fruition. I dream of world peace as well, but I will never win that prize in the whole of my life because I will never do anything deserving enough to be considered. The 1971 decision, like the 2009 decision, in my opinion serves as an exception that only proves the rule.
I can see your point of wanting to see the fruitation of his vision but what im saying is more to the people that have said that he has done nothing to help peace. In his Inaugural adress he mentioned about a peaceful relationship between us and muslim nations, he even went and gave speeches in some of those nations this is not only having a vision but acting upon it.
Brian, my friend, this is what you call politics. I though you knew that? 😀
Yes, let us not bring straightforward logic into a discussion on politics! I understand your point. It is as if the committee hopes to be like God by calling what which does not exist something that does exist. By calling Obama a Nobel Peace Prize winner it may make him into a Noble Peace Prize winner!
If we begin troop withdraw in large number from Iraq in the next several months I will take back this critique of there decision and I will call that committee a group of geniuses!
The Iraq War was not based upon lies. A little refresher for the uneducated: The war was based upon WMD’s, multiple connections to Al Qaida, including aiding and abetting them, the violation of 16 U.N. Resolutions, the firing of over 7,000 missiles at American Jets while patrolling and protecting the U.N. no fly zone, the attempted assassination of a sitting U.S. President. No WMD’s were found but all of the other legs stood firm.
We won the war, the Democrats did anything and everything to undermine it and cause our defeat. This is clear matter of congressional record, not the political spin as you attempt to purvey.
I listened to the Norwegian committee guy explain why Obama was selected and it seems more like a hope factor more than anything else.
CNN’s reporting of President Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize is horrible. Their correspondents are projecting an attitude that contends he is undeserving of the award because he has only been in office for nine months. But how can a man be undeserving of the Nobel Peace Prize when his whole post-graduate life has been dedicated to helping people help themselves? We must all remember that he was a community organizer long before he was elected to the United States Senate and American presidency. He is, and always has been, a proponent of national and international peace.
My prayer is that CNN will spend more time listening to Americans who understand the importance of this moment. Ever since America responded to the 9-11 attacks eight years ago by taking military action in Afghanistan and Iraq, the world has been in a state of moral decline. Some would argue that the pace of this decline has quickened. Add the Bush Administration’s blatant lies to the mix, and you begin to see that this Republican president allowed partisan politics to influence his decision to begin two wars that will never be won under his leadership, or the leadership of any future president.
We all agree that President Obama has yet to accomplish his lofty goals. But we Americans must also agree that we have a stake in whether he achieves these same goals. When media outlets like CNN constantly sensationalize the negative without giving credence to the positive, they impair American’s willingness to work diligently with President Obama to achieve the established goals. More importantly, though, their correspondents don’t operate as impartial witnesses to history; they manipulate us into taking sides.
But the side that needs to be taken is the one that is right. Yes, right does depend on one’s worldview, but who prefers bomb attacks over world peace? No one, I hope. The right thing to do in this case is to engage in activities that lead to most, if not all, of the things that President Obama has set into motion through his righteous words and deeds. If we Americans don’t get on board with President Obama, then our country is going to be worse off than it was after Republican President George W. Bush left office.
One of America’s greatest strengths has been the way it is viewed by the world citizenry. The world’s negative perception of America is slowly being melted away, being replaced by a more positive perception. I think this more positive perception is a tribute to President Obama’s charisma, his willingness to be the kind of chief diplomat that shows us how to love our families (fellow Americans) and neighbors (foreigners) again.
But Republican senators and representatives are even trying to undermine President Obama’s efforts on the world stage. I have heard reports about Congressmen refuting reports about global warming/climate change. Sarah Palin even stated her opposition to President Obama’s policies during a speech she delivered in Hong Kong, China. Such behavior is somewhat unprecedented, but it is a sign that the Republican Party is focused more on scare tactics (in this country and abroad) than helping America and the world recover from the Bush Years (2000-2008).
President Barack Obama is not a tyrant or a socialist; he is a concerned citizen of the world working with like-minded individuals to rebuild the global village.
That alludes to something that the commenter “TOhio” alluded to above. And I understand the value of hope. And I applauded his promises. Nevertheless, there is a great chasm between hope/promises and action/fulfillment. At least in the arena of politics this is the case.
Even if we say that it is too early to critique Obama because he has not had sufficient time to make these promises come true–he is still in his first year–this only reinforces that it is too early to hand him an award saying he has done something to bring peace.
Yes, he has alluded to those things which may bring peace. But this is a good reason to wait if anything. Let him come through on those speeches. I hope he can do it! I want him to succeed. But we cannot award him for something that has happened only in our world of wishes.
If Iran continues to play games we could very well find our troops returning in large numbers to the Middle East during the presidency of Obama. If he ever invaded Iran by the end of his presidency we would have American troops all across Afghanistan, Iran, and Iraq. Whether or not this is something that he would need to do as the President is debatable and I am sure it would be hotly debated, but it is unlikely that it would affirm his right to have received that award.
The Norwegian alluded to what he has already been doing internationally to bring about peace and hopes that this award provides more leverage.
How did we win? Why are we still there? Why is it a unstable country if we won?
Therefore I must ask: what are those things that he has been doing?
I ask this in honesty because I do not read enough news. Although I am connected with the Obama Twitter and Facebook I do not really pay attention to the updates. Is there something I am missing?
President Barack Obama is not a tyrant or a socialist; he is a concerned citizen of the world working with like-minded individuals to rebuild the global village.
He needs time. He inherited a mess. Let’s not forget that too.
But we Americans must also agree that we have a stake in whether he achieves these same goals.
If the health care debate is any indication, we need to resolve matters quickly and get back on track.
Brian, his allusion was to diplomacy around the world, in an effort to repair the American image internationally.
He has been in office for about eight months and haven’t been given a fair chance to accomplish anything. It seems that other around the country are more patriotic than the people of the united states of america.
I love it when the replubicans say “country first”.
Yes, he has not had enough time, but this is why the committee should have given him time before giving him the award.
I agree that he has accomplished this to some extent. It was surprising when he stood by the leaders of England AND France to discuss the threat of Iran. I didn’t think France would ever be our friends again after their reaction to the Bush-era. But is this enough to deserve the prize? That is debatable!
Brian, it is indeed debate. But it seems to be more about leverage to further world peace and so on.
Is it really going to give him leverage though? Does the President of Iran suddenly say, “You know, this Obama is a Nobel Peace Prize winner, he sure must know something about whether or not I should shut down my nation’s nuclear plant, therefore I will do just that?” At best it may result in leaders from other countries, especially European countries, to unite with America again in resolving global issues. This means little to leaders in the Middle East though, or so I assume.
I completely agree. But if you listen to the committee chair, so I think, that’s the hope – to be a kind of leverage internationally.
I believe it might work in some quarters, but not with Ahmadinejad.
You are thinking about it like our President is thinking about it and I am glad he is thinking about it this way. He wrote (or someone wrote for him) in his e-mail to those who are signed up for it:
“To be honest, I do not feel that I deserve to be in the company of so many of the transformative figures who’ve been honored by this prize — men and women who’ve inspired me and inspired the entire world through their courageous pursuit of peace.
But I also know that throughout history the Nobel Peace Prize has not just been used to honor specific achievement; it’s also been used as a means to give momentum to a set of causes.”
Yep! He’s got history on his side. I hope it works to some extent. But let’s not get our hopes up. 😉
“and one part to the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses”
This is what the peace prize is awarded for, now if you have a look at what Obama has done you will see that he has covered the work for Fraternity between nations if you dont see this then i feel sorry for you. secondly he has been promoting peaceful congresses and giving speeches around the world to try and help this.
Again, I am all for him receiving this award in 2011, 2012, 2013, or maybe even 2010 depending on what the next twelve months look like for our country and the world. But 2009 is a bit early. That is what it really boils down to for me. To really promote peace there may need to be more changes in Iraq and Afghanistan (which he now has power to make).
again as i have said i see your point my input is more for people like ashley who say he has done nothing and others who say that maybe they can win one.
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