Friday, October 9, 2009

The Nobel Prize for Pissing Off the American Far Right Goes to ...

Glenn Greenwald has expressed everything I would hope to say about President Obama's curious receipt of the Nobel Prize, concluding with this characteristic bit of coy understatement:

We're currently occupying and waging wars in two separate Muslim countries and making clear we reserve the "right" to attack a third. Someone who made meaningful changes to those realities would truly be a man of peace. It's unreasonable to expect that Obama would magically transform all of this in nine months, and he certainly hasn't. Instead, he presides over it and is continuing much of it. One can reasonably debate how much blame he merits for all of that, but there are simply no meaningful "peace" accomplishment in his record -- at least not yet -- and there's plenty of the opposite. That's what makes this Prize so painfully and self-evidently ludicrous.
I would also second the milder remarks on this development at Obscene Desserts, particularly the idea that Barack Obama and the Nobel Prize itself would be best served by his polite declining of the award.

I have not had the stomach to check on it, but I have to assume that FOXNews and the rest of the American far right is reacting by swearing eternal enmity for the Nobel Prize committee, if not all things Swedish, if not all things originating from the European land mass. Granting the award to Jimmy Carter (but never Ronald Reagan), Al Gore (but never George W. Bush), and the people who most authoritatively countered the Bush-Cheney Iraq weapons lies does make for an unambiguous remonstrance of the American right's view of war and peace.

Not that he asked me, but I say President Obama should deliver one of his lovely speeches in which he honors the gesture and the reasons given for it, but declines the award while pledging to make true on its spirit.

Whatever he does, the president should keep it short -- there's far more important work to be attended to.

1 comment:

larryniven said...

"I would also second the milder remarks on this development at Obscene Desserts, particularly the idea that Barack Obama and the Nobel Prize itself would be best served by his polite declining of the award."

Ooh - that would be an interesting thing to do. If there's a petition for this, sign me up.