Obama’s prize, what think?

President Barack Obama passes by a battered United Nations flag that flew over the bombed Canal Hotel in Iraq at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2009.
REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
President Barack Obama passes by a battered United Nations flag that flew over the bombed Canal Hotel in Iraq at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2009.

You’ve heard by now that the Nobel Committee has given the peace prize to President Obama. What think?

The committee clearly wants to celebrate and encourage the change in U.S. foreign policy from its fundamentally unilateralist orientation under former President George W. Bush to the multilateralism of Obama. I would also like to celebrate and encourage this return to sanity, very much so, but awarding a Nobel Peace Prize for what is so far just an expression of intention seems a bit much. The committee should have waited for some results, methinks.

Here’s the Peace Prize Committee’s full explanation of its choice.

Here’s a skeptical first take by the AP’s White House correspondent

Obama will deliver brief public remarks in the Rose Garden in a few minutes, which will surely cover his reaction to the award. So far, his spokesters have described his reaction as “humbled.”

Previous U.S. presidents to win the award were Teddy Roosevelt (in 1906 for his role in negotiating an end to the Russo-Japanese War), Woodrow Wilson (in 1919 for his efforts to create the League of Nations, another strong plug by the Nobel committee for multilateralism) and Jimmy Carter (in 2002 for his post-presidential peace work).

I did like the explanation from committee chair for why the committee, when it reached its decision, decided not to call Obama to inform him but just released the announcement:


“Waking up a president in the middle of the night, this isn’t really something you do,”Thorbjoern Jagland said.

These are just first reaction from you humble and obedient ink-stained wretch and an excuse to create an open thread for your reactions. What think?


Here’s full text of the remarks.

I thought he nailed it. Saying you are “humbled,” as I mentioned earlier, is boilerplate. Saying “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,” is both appropriate and true.”

He acknowledges that the award does not refelect anything he has actually accomplished but uses him as a symbol of aspirations widely share around the world for peace, nuclear disarmament, dealing with global warming, overcoming racial and religious hatreds, and then he worked a very specific lug for a solution to the israeli-Palestinian conflict.

He took no questions, but as we walked away, I could hear two shouted to him by reporters. “What does your wife think?” and “What will you do with the money?” Oh, please.

What think?

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Comments (54)

  1. Submitted by Aaron Landry on 10/09/2009 - 09:33 am.

    My thoughts:


  2. Submitted by Peder DeFor on 10/09/2009 - 09:57 am.

    I’m not sure why they waited this long. His accomplishments at this time last year were virtually as great;)
    Seriously…well, how can you take this seriously? Yes, it’s obvious that the Nobel committee is serving some kind of reward for being post Bush. But if that’s the case, why didn’t they just award it to the American people (like Time did when they chickened out with the man of the year thing)? The award is indefensible on its merits. Obama simply hasn’t done anything to bring more peace to the world. Frankly, it makes them look like a joke.

  3. Submitted by Justin Heideman on 10/09/2009 - 10:13 am.

    It’s undeniable that it seems a little premature. However, it is also undeniable that Obama has changed the tone of international relations by once again engaging the US in good faith and as a rational player. Thus, he’s also changed the trajectory of the world. In that sense, I think award is totally deserved.

    And yeah, it is a total rebuke of Bush’s policies and legacy. And that’s not bad. It’s necessary.

  4. Submitted by Bill Krause on 10/09/2009 - 10:26 am.

    This was the Nobel committee’s response to SNL’s skit, and about as humorous.

  5. Submitted by Mohammed Ali Bin Shah on 10/09/2009 - 10:26 am.

    Nobel nominations were due Feb 1. I would like to know who nominated BO after only 11 days in office.

    Good for him, but this is a joke, especially since he is about to send more troops to Afghanistan to kill more Muslims. Peace? Ha!

  6. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 10/09/2009 - 10:41 am.


  7. Submitted by Steve Yelvington on 10/09/2009 - 10:55 am.

    Given the abysmal state of news coverage of world affairs in U.S. media, and the fact that few Americans ever travel internationally, it’s very difficult for Americans to understand people outside our borders.

    Over the next 24 hours, coverage of this award in U.S. media will be focused on all the wrong things: political scorekeeping, sound-bite talking points orchestrated by political spinmeisters, and the crass ranting of snake-oil salesmen like Limbaugh, Beck and Coulter.

    That’s a shame, because this award is sending a message about multilateralism and constructive leadership that we would do well to receive.

  8. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 10/09/2009 - 11:00 am.

    Changing the tone of nation-to-nation relations across the face of an entire planet is, in itself, a major accomplishment.

    Obama has already changed the world, moving us toward, peace, diplomacy, and emotional maturity. Indeed, the adults are back in charge.

    Those expressing disagreement with this award seem not to realize the power of ideas. Either that or they preferred the emotionally-dysfunctional, insecure, 10-year-old bully “chip on the shoulder,” attitude so destructively spread throughout the world by Lon, oh sorry! DICK Cheney during Bushco.

  9. Submitted by Jude Dornisch on 10/09/2009 - 11:03 am.

    From here it looks premature. But from the rest of the world it is merely an acknowledgment of just how much the world has changed.

    Look at how much the US gained in world opinion. The US is the 800lb gorilla in the room. The fact that it can now be approached with hope instead of trepidation is the most important thing that has happened for peace in the world.

  10. Submitted by Aaron Klemz on 10/09/2009 - 11:28 am.

    People who claim that Obama hasn’t done anything to deserve this award are missing the point. It is a clear repudiation of the unilateralism, bellicosity and aggressive militarism of the Bush-Cheney administration. It should be read as the Nobel committee parting shot at Bush. You can find fault in that if you like, but if political discourse focuses on whether Obama “has done anything to deserve this yet” it is missing the essence of this action. I thought Obama’s speech this morning was pretty much the best he could do with a weird situation.

  11. Submitted by Dave Thompson on 10/09/2009 - 11:29 am.

    I give Obama high marks for his accomplishments in changing the world’s perception of the US. His speech in Cairo to the Muslim world put an end to the notion that the US would continue to fall into Bin Laden’s trap of Christians vs. Muslims, winner take all. The U.S.A. BRAND is what’s changed. I don’t see any real accomplishments yet.
    It’s too early for a Nobel Peace Prize for Obama. There is no doubt he will earn this prize, but he hasn’t yet.

  12. Anonymous Submitted by Anonymous on 10/09/2009 - 11:32 am.

    My initial reaction to the news remains my abiding reaction: alarm. First, Obama is a capable, smart leader whose actions simply do not at this point in his life merit such a distinction. The Cult of Obama lives. Second, I knew the U.S. had fallen in its international standing under the Bush administration, but I had no idea we had fallen so low that a merely competent leader is cause for such acclaim. Third, I frankly think this is catastrophic on the political home front. I fear it will only intensify and harden the resentments on the right that fuel ideological opposition to Obama’s initiatives.

  13. Submitted by david granneman on 10/09/2009 - 11:49 am.

    hello all
    george bush freed millions of iraqs from the rule of a cruel dictator. he freed millions of women from the domination of the taliban in afghanastan.

  14. Submitted by Jeremy Powers on 10/09/2009 - 11:49 am.

    More than anything, this shows — and should show even dense Americans — how much the United States is relied and how poorly George W. Bush was thought of around the world. Let’s face it, Bush was the single worst president going back more than half a century, during which time the United States became the undisputed world leader. Go to another country and their newspapers are filled with U.S. news. Everything we do affects them. And George W. Bush made them feel afraid, stirred up hornets’ nest by just mispronouncing country names, started completely unnecessary wars for his own amusement and for GOD’S SAKE allowed torture. Simply NOT being Bush was practically enough to win this award. Some may say, “See, even progressives think Obama didn’t do anything.” But the truth of the matter is, not being a stupid world leader IS doing something. And he defeated the Republicans, which alone probably made the world safer for billions.

  15. Submitted by Judy Finger on 10/09/2009 - 12:17 pm.

    It would be so pleasant to just once not see second guessing and nitpicking about a topic involving the President. He had nothing to do with this prize. He didn’t apply, he didn’t lobby for it. The Nobel Committee made the decision. Could we just celebrate for once.

  16. Submitted by Howard Salute on 10/09/2009 - 12:19 pm.

    I support our President and feel he is trying to make the right decisions for the right reasons. However, giving this award to Obama diminishes the award and those who have previously received it.

  17. Submitted by Rod Loper on 10/09/2009 - 12:19 pm.

    I think the award goes to the American people who had the good sense to elect this good and intelligent man to office. His work as a senator on nuclear proliferation with Lugar is reason enough. For God’s sake, we have had eight years of
    ignoring nuclear proliferation and UN-bashing as
    a policy. Our Pres’s response set the right tone.

  18. Submitted by Howard Salute on 10/09/2009 - 12:22 pm.

    ps.. Oh No!! I just realized I will most likely be among the group Jimmy Carter labels as racist for believing Obama does not deserve this award at this point in time.

  19. Submitted by John Olson on 10/09/2009 - 12:23 pm.

    Nominations for all the Nobel categories closed on February 1. President Obama had been in office all of, what, 11 days?

    Nobel prizes have historically recognized achievements by an individual or group of individuals for work that has often taken a lifetime to achieve–especially in the sciences. The work of President Obama and his administration is a “work in progress.” The end result(s) remain to be seen.

  20. Submitted by Jayaram Seshadri on 10/09/2009 - 12:29 pm.

    I believe the noble peace committee was conveying the following quote from someone I do not know.

    ” Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things and still BE CALM IN YOUR HEART.”

    As is clear from Mahathma Gandhi’s words- “To understand peace we have to understand the mind set of the violent mind” and create all opportunities to dialogue with that mind–
    Mr. Obama and his team are establishing and have established this process of dialogue for creating a better world..

    These are reasons to celebrate this award to Mr. Obama instead of the many talking heads shouting and creating noise- The peace committee has created the white noise that we need when we are in the midst of a storm.

    Om Shanthi Om( means Peace in sanskrit).


    For anyone interested in establishing a dialogue on peace, may I humbly suggest a blog that I created a few years ago. You can reach it by:

    This is one way we can help the peace process in our daily activities.

  21. Submitted by Peter Soulen on 10/09/2009 - 12:34 pm.

    I think it’s fantastic. The award goes to the President, but it’s shared by every American who worked and voted for him and by doing so, worked and voted for a better shot at peace than they saw being offered by his opponents…

  22. Submitted by Ed Stych on 10/09/2009 - 12:39 pm.

    I think it says something when 80 percent of MinnPost’s readers are Obama supporters, but only two of the six commenters so far are willing to halfway stick their neck out to support the president being picked for this award.

    Like Peder said, the committee’s decision is indefensible.

  23. Submitted by Barbara Miller on 10/09/2009 - 12:41 pm.

    Intentionally or not, the Nobel Committee has done what the U.S. Congress has failed to do, i.e., shine the light of day into the dark hidey-holes of the Bush/Cheney years. As noted by Justin Heideman (above): “…it is a total rebuke of Bush’s policies and legacy…” Personally, I think it is much more, but that will do very nicely for starters.

  24. Submitted by Molly MacGregor on 10/09/2009 - 01:04 pm.

    The award is a challenge to the President and to Americans to deliver on the dream to return to “multilaterialsim and constructive leadership” (nice phrase, thanks); it’s not about what he has done, it is about what he needs to do. Eric’s analysis was right on; this is a moment that should be used to envision the future we need, not about reigniting the tired old complaints.

  25. Submitted by Phil Tichenor on 10/09/2009 - 01:49 pm.

    President Obama would have been wise to say how humbled he was (as he did) and then, immediately, say he would repectfully decline to receive the award.

    He would have received many accolades for that mature judgment and, importantly, would have left his domestic critics with little to say.

    It’s still not to late–except that, now, such a decision will fail to reflect his proper gut reaction–which an immediate decline would have done.

    The Committee blundered, and the U.N.’s Ban was the first to point that out. And Obama’s team blundered by not giving him the best, immediate advice.

    It’s bad when 90 % of the Country immediately saw the folly in this, and the White House couldn’t.

  26. Submitted by Gregory Stricherz on 10/09/2009 - 01:52 pm.

    Tom Lehrer said that the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to Henry Kissinger made political satire obsolete.

    He doubtless would not phrase an opinion on the Obama prize quite as strongly, but he would be speaking in the same way.

  27. Submitted by Conklin Conklin on 10/09/2009 - 02:07 pm.

    I believe the award to Obama reflects, rightly or wrongly, the international community’s longstanding uncomfortableness with Bush/Cheney.

  28. Submitted by Van Mueller on 10/09/2009 - 02:20 pm.

    Steve’s comments are right on. I am fearful that the Republicans will use this Obama honor to boo and whine and embarass our country before the entire world.

  29. Submitted by myles spicer on 10/09/2009 - 02:27 pm.

    I think the entire civilized world is hungry — let’s even say desperate — for leadership and direction to new and better ways for peace and progress. By picking Obama, it is a bet on “futures”. They have given him a mantle that says: “show us the way”. Is he the legitimate leader to do this…is he worthy of the mantle…is he up to the challenge? That is yet to be determined, but for now, that task has been handed to him by folks that are pretty smart. Let’s hope!

  30. Submitted by John Roach on 10/09/2009 - 02:40 pm.

    Q: What is “Pffft.”?

    A: The sum total of the right’s ability to react to this award (And also, the sound of Swiftee’s head exploding).

    Most of the folks who hate Obama draw the conclusions they require first, and then they look for some sort of evidence to support those conclusions.

    This is why we are seeing the fascinating phenomenon of prominent GOP figures insulting and denigrating both the Nobel prize committee and the Prize itself: Since the fact of the prize does not fit their pre-drawn conclusions, the fact must be modified, or ignored. This news is too big to be ignored, so it must instead be changed.

    So for the American right, the Nobel prize is now stupid and worthless, and the prize committee is also stupid and worthless. Problem solved.

  31. Submitted by Richard Schulze on 10/09/2009 - 03:01 pm.

    Pffft; sounds more like a wet fuse…

  32. Submitted by Beryl John-Knudson on 10/09/2009 - 03:02 pm.

    President Obama noted this morning, that he had been reminded by his daughter that it was White House dog, Bo’s birthday also.

    Not exactly an ice-breaker intro but…consider also, that the dog Bo has been given another minor headline in the news lately…that Bo is not yet paper-trained; much to the chagrin of the cleaner-uppers on Air force One.

    Think of it this way…maybe Bo is not paper-trained…so, what about his ‘master’ who is? Where are the fulfillments; or even substantial progress towards those paper promises? We need more than paper-goals of peace and stop-the-war words only. And what about other paper-trained-only policy promises?…like affordable health care for all?

    Maybe Bo’s ‘inappropriate deposits’ are merely political statements reminding our president of his campaign goals to secure peace; as promised…by stopping our marketplace-oriented oil wars. Or even reconsidering the unacceptable acts of drone killing villagers from bloodless command centers? Gotta do more than mere paper trails sans substance; and repeating again, health care for all as promised?

    Let this good dog keep on reminding his ‘master’ what Obama is there for. More power to you Bo.

    Not yet paper-trained? Not to worry Bo. Just have one Happy Birthday and continue reminding Obama, paper-trained or whatever…he’s got to live up to The Nobel Peace Prize even as received, before-the-fact.

    Remind our well-intentioned but yet to perform well as expected president…’Do’, not do-do is the answer!

    Let this good dog keep dropping his political statements; reminding his master what he’s there for… more power to you, Bo.

    Not yet paper trained? Not to worry Bo…just have one Happy Birthday and do continue to let drop to Obama, that he’s got to start seriously pursuing a more viable game plan after receiving the Nobel Peace Prize, before-the fact?

    Keep reminding him Bo…’Do’, not do-do is the answer!

  33. Submitted by Beryl John-Knudson on 10/09/2009 - 03:13 pm.

    I do believe I did carelessly retype a couple of lines;a paragraph actually; repeating, like a malfuntioning mantra…sorry about that. But my thoughts have honorable motives?

  34. Submitted by Hénock Gugsa on 10/09/2009 - 03:48 pm.

    #6 – “Pffft” … sounds like sour grapes to me! The Taliban are also making similar slobbery noises about this news now.

    I can just imagine all the Obama haters wildly gnashing their teeth and pulling their hair out.

    If for nothing else, in my view, Obama deserves this prize for tolerating and even turning the other cheek to the plethora of liars, and malcontent, greedy old people (you know yourselves.)

  35. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 10/09/2009 - 03:54 pm.

    Pffft is actually the sound Alfred Nobel’s head exploding, not mine.

    The Nobel Committees tarnished the honor of the trust Nobel placed in them in 2007, when they sought to legitimize what is now being roundly acknowledged to be a fraud by awarding ALGORE; they have today put on the finishing touches to their discredit by nominating a President with 11 days in office and nothing to show after nine months.

    They’ve turned the Nobel into a joke….I half expected to see Kanye West forcing his way to the podium.

    Obama would earn instant respect, even from people like me that see he is wholly unprepared for the office he holds, if he would decline.

    Pfffft. (That one was me considering the chance that Obama might make such a wise decision)

  36. Submitted by Raj Maddali on 10/09/2009 - 04:23 pm.

    Thomas Swift is mad that the Noble peace prize did not go to Bush and Rumsfeld, along with a second one for Henry Kissinger.

    “wholly unprepared for Office” – why ? Because he cannot do for America what George Bush did in eight years !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  37. Submitted by John Roach on 10/09/2009 - 05:06 pm.

    “They’ve turned the Nobel into a joke…”

    Using right wing standards, the Nobel Peace Prize has always been a joke. The cynicism, hate and fear that are embraced in right wing philosophy leave no room for an award based on optimism or idealism.

    Here is a link to an excellent article by a former chair of the Nobel committee that explains the philosophy of the award process. Obama’s winning of this year’s prize is entirely consistent with the philosphy of hope and the promotion of peace that Alfred Nobel envisioned when he established the prize:


    Naturally, it will be an object of derision and ridicule for the American right.

  38. Submitted by Richard Schulze on 10/09/2009 - 06:48 pm.

    Pfft, the sound that a dud makes when the explosive fails to fire or detonate on time.

    Swiftee uses anecdotes as his platform instead of facts and figures and it reflects in the errors of his conclusions.

  39. Submitted by Tom Anderson on 10/09/2009 - 09:24 pm.

    And all this new peace we have since President Obama took office is where?
    Eastern Europe?

    I concede that North Korea and Iran seem to be gracefully coming back to the fold and discarding their nuclear weapons, but somehow the world overall just doesn’t seem any more tranquil now than it did this time last year.

  40. Submitted by Beryl John-Knudson on 10/09/2009 - 10:42 pm.

    Then again…

    Why blame Obama? Blame the bloodless Norwegians on the Nobel Peace Prize Committee who suffered an uffda-moment probably, and activated this bloody war of words on this side of the Atlantic?

    So much for peace in our time, eh? All I can say is, keep the fate, folks. Maybe there will be a few nuclear-sustainable earth movers arriving in North Dakota soon…energizing White House peace policy – digging up and deactivating how many hundred vintage warheads as Obama promised…who knows?

  41. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 10/10/2009 - 09:48 am.

    Beryl is right.

    As far as we know, Obama didn’t nominate himself, and no one forced the Committee to make the award.

    In this, I don’t blame Obama, but as I said, I don’t expect him to show the grace and wisdom required to decline, although I aver he is smart enough to know he is being used.

    BTW, just so we’re clear. I count myself as one of the majority of Americans that wince at the memory of the bumbling Carter administration. I also believe that Carter’s award was politically motivated.

    However I cannot say that his record of humanitarian work wasn’t sincere. Jimmy Carter may have been one of the worst Presidents, but he is a very compassionate human being and was wholly worthy of his Nobel Prize.

  42. Submitted by John E Iacono on 10/10/2009 - 10:13 am.

    I’m more interested in what he does with the 1.4 million prize.

    Hope it’s not ACORN…

  43. Submitted by John Roach on 10/10/2009 - 11:41 am.

    I’m sure that if Obama declined the award, Swiftee and his ilk would quickly turn around to draw similarites between Obama the only awardee who ever refused the prize:


    A North Vietnamese communist. These folks are so predictable.

  44. Submitted by Shawn Hastings on 10/10/2009 - 11:45 am.

    This is yet just one more example documenting that the Nobel Peace Prize means absolutely nothing now. I’m sure Alfred would be turning over in his grave.

    It’s really not surprising considering two of the more recent winners were Yasir Arafat, and that goofy guy who invented the Internet.

    This is supposed to be an award for accomplishments, end of story.

  45. Submitted by Marcel Koegel on 10/10/2009 - 11:48 am.

    Obama getting the Pulizer? Those Morons are definetly on some powerful drugs. Must be same kind that the liberals in Minn. were taking who elected that comedian to congress. Are we all insane? What the H–L did he do? N O T H I N G !
    If the Reverend Jesse Jerkson did what he wanted to do and cut his n–s off may be he would grow some and turn down the prize and give to someone who really deserves it! Unfortunatly we have some imposter who is in Washington who’s ego is about to burst slapping himself on the shoulder again. Or is he fitting himself for the Robe that Jesus wore. A phony house of cards will soon fall when the smallest gust of wind from Iran will blow it down!

  46. Submitted by Marcel Koegel on 10/10/2009 - 12:00 pm.

    No Guts No Glory ! BHO doesn’t have either one !
    Refusal of the Prize would show the country and the world that he is a leader and not a flunkie for the left.

  47. Submitted by Mike Wyatt on 10/10/2009 - 02:26 pm.

    Obama, quite frankly, has put friendly window dressing on the Bush-era doctrine and has done little to reverse course with those policies, and in fact, has extended them. How any leader at the helm of two global wars, wiretapping of its citizenry, and filling virtually every cabinet position with Wall Street Bankers to further rampant corporatism is worthy of a “Nobel Peace Prize” is beyond me. I just cannot believe how people have fallen for the softer voice and smile of Obama, and really have not looked beyond that to discover that he is essentially the same person policy-wise as Bush II, Bush I, Clinton, etc. People believe we got change, but we’re too dumbed down in America to realize just whom or what we put into office.

  48. Submitted by Raj Maddali on 10/10/2009 - 08:02 pm.

    When did the Nobel Committee give the prize the Lech Walesa. Before he achieved anything ? No. They gave it to him when he was starting the fight in 1983. And of course the right wingers had no problem with that.

    The Nobel Committee seems to be provide the moral support for Obama on fights no American president has had the guts to confront.

    a) He is the first American president to openly confront Israel on its land grab. Did Reagan, Bush, Clinton or Bush II have the guts. Nope.

    b) What did Bush II’s bombast on Iran achieve. How about Nothing in 8 years. The Nobel committee is rewarding him for the risk and courage in opening talks with Iran. The first president in 20+ years to do so.

    c) Nuclear Arms. Credit goes some to Reagan, but who else has had the guts to bring up nuclear disaramaments.

  49. Submitted by Hénock Gugsa on 10/11/2009 - 01:27 am.

    #42 – Getting frothy in the mouth, are we?

    #45 – “Are we all insane?”

    Are you?

    #46 – “No Guts No Glory ! BHO doesn’t have either one!”

    I suppose chicken-hawk Republicans who shoot their friends in the face do.

  50. Submitted by Hénock Gugsa on 10/11/2009 - 10:41 am.

    #42 – “I’m more interested in what he does with the 1.4 million prize.”

    But, what business is this of anybody’s? Not your hard-earned taxpayer’s money, is it? He can do with it whatever his heart wishes!

  51. Submitted by Henry Wolff on 10/11/2009 - 02:04 pm.

    Just shows that the left lives in the world of fantasy.

  52. Submitted by jim hughes on 10/11/2009 - 08:51 pm.

    As I understand it, the prize is simply awareded to the person who’s done the most to advance the cause of world peace in the preceding year.

    President Obama has made 3 policy announcements which in themselves are of enormous significance to world peace:

    1. Complete nuclear disarmament – not ‘mutually assured destruction’ – is our goal.

    2. If we are to hold and interrogate foreign nationals suspected of terrorism we will do it in a way that does not violate our own laws, or international agreements we’ve signed.

    3. We will be an active an sincere participant in efforts to address human-caused global warming.

  53. Submitted by Ann Richards on 10/13/2009 - 07:32 am.

    Americas really need to get over themselves. Here is a flash: America is not the center of the universe. The Noble Prize is not ours to determine winners for. The prize was given for ‘efforts to strengthen cooperation between people……….’ You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see there is a difference between this administration and the last. But it helps if you get out of Dodge…..really, Americans are not as well traveled as they think they are….we don’t study other cultures and talk to people outside of America. Going to the Caribbean and being isolated from the local population doesn’t count. We dismiss everyone else……evidence in our not being willing to learn from other developed nations how they provide medical care for their people…we dismiss great environmental breakthroughs from other industrial nations. And when Obama went to Germany and was welcomed with open arms, we dismissed them and him. Currently I serve as a volunteer in E Europe. I have been here for almost 2 years. I don’t discuss personalities with nationals here but I can tell you the difference they feel towards Americans since this last election is tremendous. They listen more to what Pres Obama says then most Americans. They are now hopeful that Americans will be open to discussion about world problems. The doubting Thomas’ will always be with us, they won’t challenge their view, because they are not confident in their political stance. They will trash and dismiss the Nobel Prize because they don’t understand the changes going on. My advise is to get a passport and discover what is happening in the rest of the world. And Nobel rolling over in his grave? You wish!

  54. Submitted by Hénock Gugsa on 10/13/2009 - 05:08 pm.

    #41 : “Jimmy Carter may have been one of the worst Presidents, but he is a very compassionate human being and was wholly worthy of his Nobel Prize.”

    – How magnanimous of you, Mr. Swift! The velvet glove is tattered, however.

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