President Obama wins…

… the Nobel Peace Prize?

I’m speechless. Practically. Assuming of course, that this is true. I just heard from a friend, and sure enough, four minutes ago Reuters moved it over the wires at 5:49 am eastern.

Off the top of my head, TR won it for helping Russia and Japan settle the “short victorious war”. Wilson won it for his work trying to end and settle WW I. His work was a disaster, but that wasn’t known at the time, nor was it obvious. Jimmy Carter won it for working hard to extract a cold peace between Israel and Egypt. Going non-presidential, many more. Perhaps Kissinger for the Vietnam Peace Accords springs to mind as the closest parallel. Accords that were to be profoundly betrayed, yet Kissinger was back then a sort of rock star type figure, an improbably proto-Obama.

Well, congratulations to the President.

And I wouldn’t trust the Nobel Peace Prize committee to manage a barber shop.


7 Responses to “President Obama wins…”

  1. Female says:

    ahahah I just read that he’d won it too. OK I’m convinced, this prize means nothing.

    Now prepare for some old fashioned thread derailment Female style!!

    I want to say something about the Hey, Hey skit that seems to have created some intarnet controversy.

    First off. Harry Connick Jnr is so damn hot. Now that I have that out of my system.

    Hey, Hey It’s Saturday is an iconic Australian variety show.
    It was a household institution in most Australian homes in the 1970s and 80s. It was axed about ten years ago when Daryl Somers the host appeared to get some kind of dementia and started umming and ahhing more than usual. So when people say they just wanted nostalgia for the old days, what they mean is nostalgia for their youth in the 70’s/80’s when watching Hey, Hey. They do not mean nostalgia for racism in the United States..why would they, it’s a different country.

    The show came back on TV a couple of weeks ago (I don’t watch commercial stations so I missed the controversial episode with the Michael Jackson tribute).

    Anyhow, the tribute appeared on a segment of the show called ‘Red Faces’. This is where the public perform what are supposed to be incredibly, and I mean incredibly, lame skits. The lamer they are, the more chance they have of getting on. It is traditional for the acts to be gonged off and for the audience to boo at them. This is all very traditional and encouraged. That’s why it’s called “Red Faces”, they are supposed to make fools of themselves and get embarrassed.

    The act wasn’t supposed to be racist but clearly was and is. This amply demonstrates how naive to American history and the civil rights movement, the average Australian is. The fact that physicians performed the skit again demonstrates what is normal Australian naiveity and ignorance of what goes on in the Northern Hemisphere. But hey, you guys are similiarly ignorant of the Southern Hemisphere so it all evens out…Vanautu…

  2. Sam Adams says:

    “And I wouldn’t trust the Nobel Peace Prize committee to manage a barber shop.”

    Hear, hear. Obama escalates war in Pakistan and Afghanistan and wins the Nobel Peace Prize.

    The Nobel award is now meaningless, except in an Orwellian sense. War is peace. Yay.

  3. Danny says:

    I promise to bring world peace.

    Now where’s my prize?

  4. wolfe says:

    @Danny but do you promise free unicorns for everyone too?
    Someone should do up a site that “awards” fake Nobel Peace Prizes for spurious achievements.

    @Sam I don’t know if I agree he “escalates” the war; he’s responding to the facts on the ground. The war has long since escalated. It was one of the criticisms of George W. Bush that he was too focused on Iraq.

    Moreover the actual strategy proposed for Afghanistan is a comprehensive well-rounded counter-insurgency strategy. Will it work? Maybe. The surge in Iraq was surprisingly (and impressively) successful, though the real proof of the pudding will be 30 years hence.

    In the case of Afghanistan, there are a lot of differences, and I confess the Administration’s current path of steering a course between the generals’ advice and that of the bizarre Joe Biden is decidedly imprudent.

    Enough on that unhappy subject for now…

    @Female whoa what a derail. Yeah, amazingly I saw the clip. I don’t normally see that kind of pop culture thing reliably (ie sometimes I see a lot of it then for months nearly nothing). For a German-speaking country, your Australian actors speak very good English.

    Unlike some, I’ve no issue with carefully applied makeup for an actor playing a character of another race IF it’s contextually appropriate. (e.g. SNL, the best Obama impersonation was, they all agreed, done by a white guy). Some people, understandably, are not fans of even that.

    Blackface, when it’s all about making the darkies out to be buffoons… no thanks.

    OTOH, I’m fine with the use of blackface in the film “Confederate States of America”. (It’s a sobering alternative history look at what might have happened had the Confederacy won. I don’t think their alternative history is terribly good, but it is a fairly decent cursory examination of some of the cultural elements of racism that prevailed in the USA).

    I’m not so sure I’d say Australia is naive as much as highly politically incorrect with a degree of naivety. But you live there, so you’d know best. I did find it astounding that all those blackface people were physicians. Mind boggling.

    And I shan’t equate a typo in a blog (I’ve much less time for proofing these days not that I ever had a lot) with a physician donning blackface and doing the “Jackson Jive”.

    Thanks for the context though. Not all of that came through in the clip.


  5. Sam Adams says:

    @ wolfe: The necessity of war is a subject I think we’ll never find any middle ground on. I ultimately believe our viewpoints have far more in common than not, but this, alas, is unbridgeable.

    (And, yeah, I agree, it is a very unhappy subject, but please don’t refrain from expressing your opinion on it, or anything else. Even when I disagree with you, you have some reasoning to back up your opinions which I always find interesting. You’re kind of an anti-Cornel West, who is probably still doing his happy dance and composing a new rap song after hearing the news of Obama’s Nobel Prize. Um … I hope you take that the way I meant it.)

  6. Female says:

    You obviously don’t and possibly cannot (top secretz!!) discuss Afghanistan or Iraq but there are a few things I just don’t get.

    1. Why bomb a country and then spend millions (maybe even billions) to built a road in it?

    2. Is the army going to protect and monitor that road at all times indefinitely so that the taliban don’t get to blow it up as soon as US and allied forces go elsewhere.

    3. Why withdraw from Iraq when the Iraqi government and army is not yet ready to handle militia forces who are surely going to kill them as soon as the US leaves.

    OMG it’s all just epic fail.

  7. wolfe says:

    @Sam I do indeed. And as I think you’ve surmised, I’m no bright-eyed JFK-style neocon, believing in the simple transformative power of force. With a dad serving, I was raised with a proper fear of war. It’s no glory, that’s for sure. It’s no simple solution, that’s for sure.

    I abhor war. The sad problem is, there are things even worse.

    I agree; we are unlikely to agree. I will continue to post as I see fit, as it’s my blog. I am grateful, always, for your thoughtful feedback though, and I don’t take it remotely the wrong way; indeed I laughed at the anti-Cornel West.

    Time permitting I’ve some longer answers for you in other posts.

    @Female I’ll respond to your questions, time permitting. They are good ones.


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