The Nobel Peace Prize


Nobel Prize

I woke up Friday surprised to find out that President Barack Obama was awarded the Nobel Prize for peace.  I texted a couple of friends immediately. They were already aware of it since it had been announced at a time when working people are getting ready to go to their jobs. By the time I learned about it at mid morning, my friends were already way deep into listening to what The Meanest Mass Media had to say. The usual Media Mouths were well into spewing forth The Uglies about Obama winning. It took me a while to catch up with the comments from the Beckites and Rushing Loudbaughetts. But let’s see what the locals thought first.

H.D. Brands, Professor of history at the University of Texas, and a super nice person, said the winning was “premature.”  Maybe it is the Nobel Premature Peace Prize for Promise.

Michael McCaul, R-Representative said “it was like awarding The Heisman Trophy in September.” Nice analogy. Remember, it’s Austin and the winner of the Heisman Trophy is on the front burner orange. Make that burnt orange burner.

The Lt. Governor, Republican, David Dewhurst, said on Twitter “Is @BarackObama more deserving of a Nobel Peace than President Reagan?” Your Lieutenantship, we know you are a really cool guy and showing how you can tweet does have a certain ‘cool-guy’ appeal. But check with Dr. Brands for more timely analogous references. Granted, Ronald, “Mr. GORBACHEV, tear down this wall,” Reagan, would have definitely been Nobel material, but our current economic situation can partially be traced to Reganomics. More importantly the audience who remembers Reagan does not Twitter. Besides, unless Mr. Reagan was nominated prior to his death, the award cannot be given posthumously. BTW – Mikhail Gorbachev was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1990.

U.S. Senator, John Crony, R-Austin, said “Ordinarily it’s awarded for accomplishments.”

With all due respect, Senator Crony, do you really know why the award is given?

According to Alfred Nobel’s will, the Peace Prize should be awarded to the person who:

during the preceding year […] 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.[1]

You get the prize for trying to make the world a better place to live. Getting Dick Cheney out and not letting Sarah Palin in is good enough reason for me to give the prize to Obama.

Next Question. How many people can win and what are the categories to win?

Up to three individuals in the categories of Physics, Chemistry, Medicine, Literature and Peace may be awarded a Nobel Prize.

Next. Can you name any other Americans who won a Nobel Prize?  OK, how about just in 2009?

Individuals representing the United States won in the following categories. Physics (2 of 3 winners) Medicine (3 winners), Chemistry (1 of 3 winners), Peace (1of 1 winner)

The United States won 7 of the 11 prizes available. That is 77% of the total prizes available.

http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/lists/2009.html

http://nobelprize.org/nobelfoundation/history/lemmel/index.html

What is the nomination process?

“Each year the respective Nobel Committees send individual invitations to thousands of members of academies, university professors, scientists from numerous countries, previous Nobel Laureates, members of parliamentary assemblies and others, asking them to submit candidates for the Nobel Prizes for the coming year. These nominators are chosen in such a way that as many countries and universities as possible are represented over time.” http://nobelprize.org/nomination/

So to the Becketts and Rushing Loudbaugherettes, here’s what I’m thinking.

I see the problem here. To be nominated for a Nobel prize invitations are sent to people who are intelligent, diverse, academic-oriented, science oriented, free thinking individuals from all walks of life throughout the world. No wonder you do not know who these people are and did not receive an invitation.

It is not your prize to give. It is a result of the instructions contained in the will of Alfred Nobel.  If you want to control this, get your lawyers working on suing the Nobel Foundation. Otherwise you are reflecting the antithesis of the purpose of the prize.

The award is not won because it is not a competition. The peace award is given by a five member committee made up of Norwegians. You know those people in those nice sweaters. There were 205 nominations in the peace category alone. I am OK with the awarding for the “promise of peace.” It is not given for chasing camels. It is about playing nice in the world.

Turning around the words of former president Bush, “If you are not with us, you are against us.” So does that mean you are against peace?

You scream “politics.” That is true.  The name of the global game is politics. It is known as diplomacy.

Basically, Republicans, you are just pissed that you did not think of nominating the previous administration. But then again, they don’t give the prize for bombing innocent countries, torturing human beings and riding rough shod over the world like an ego-driven cowboy from the wild west looking for non existent weapons of mass destruction.

Couldn’t we just listen to The Beatles and John Lennon and Give Peace a Chance? Does it really matter who brings it?

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