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  • Faint Praise

    Posted by James R. Rummel on October 9th, 2009 (All posts by )

    Obama gets the Nobel Peace Prize. There’ll be no living with him now.

    Why did he get it, exactly? For failing to bring the Olympics to Chicago?

    It seems that the Nobel committee is still seething that Bush managed to forge a democracy in the Middle East, as their praise of Obama sounds an awful lot like the scolding Bush got during his two terms. It seems that our current President brought hope to the world, changed the climate of international politics, stuff like that. Sounds like one of Obama’s campaign speeches.

    The praise heaped on Obama is all about ephemeral accomplishments that have yet to actually happen. Getting the US involved in combating climate change, reducing the number of nuclear weapons in the world, reducing tensions between Muslim nations and the US. Sort of like giving the heavyweight boxing championship to an Internet tough guy who never actually threw a punch.

    But trying to use the Nobel prize to try and make Bush feel bad is now traditional for the Nobel committee. Back in 2002, they passed one off to former President Jimmy Carter for that very reason.

    The next step is to give a Nobel prize to the girl Bush knew in high school that turned him down for a date. That will show him!

     

    27 Responses to “Faint Praise”

    1. Sgt. Mom Says:

      My daughter’s reaction this morning, when I told her of this, and reiterated that it was not a joke was the most apt I have seen or read so far. She said,
      “I guess they’re giving them out to just anyone, now!”

    2. Anonymous Says:

      This should convince skeptics that the Noble Peace Prize selection committee is composed of a bunch of lunatics. Awarding the prize to Yassar Arafat was bad enough but to award it to Obama out-does that in terms of craziness. I guess it also goes to prove that one’s lack of accomplishment can be glossed over by one’s gift of gab.

    3. Retardo Says:

      Conversation with my girlfriend this morning. She voted for him, and still approves of him:

      Me: They gave Obama the Nobel Peace Prize.
      Her: Who did?
      Me: They did. The Nobel Committee.
      Her: You’re making this up.
      Me: No, I’m serious. They really did.
      Her: Why?
      Me: He gave a speech about disarmament or something.
      Her: [Long pause.] It’s not April.

    4. Jonathan Says:

      They’re not lunatics. They gave it to Obama for the same reason they gave it to Jimmy Carter: they wanted to flip off the USA. Obama is the American president who doesn’t like America. Awarding him the prize isn’t a joke, it’s an intentional insult to all of us.

    5. Tatyana Says:

      It sounds like one of Obama campaign speeches because he was nominated when in office for only 12 days!

      Awarding this prize isn’t a joke, but that doesn’t mean we can’t laugh at it.

    6. Percy Dovetonsils Says:

      Well, the good thing is that Obama is so modest and well-grounded that this won’t go to his head.

      (In all seriousness, as noted elsewhere, this could be his “Jimmy Carter attacked by rabbit” moment.)

    7. Dan from Madison Says:

      The Peace Prize thingee jumped the shark when Arafat got it. Maybe before that. Fortunately, most Americans pay attention to the peace prize just about as much as we do soccer standings.

    8. Tatyana Says:

      Dan, don’t insult soccer. It’s a noble game.

    9. Retardo Says:

      What’s nice about this is that the media and Obama’s other hardcore supporters (not to mention Dear Teleprompter Himself) are going to act like this as a Very Serious Thing, not a silly-season item.

      The more those fools act like crazed cult members, the more the rational Obama voters in the middle are going to start looking for the exits.

      By 2012, all we’ll have to do is find a credible candidate to… oh… Dammit, dammit, dammit…

      If Huckabee or Romney gets elected in 2012, I’m leaving the United States and moving to California.

    10. Ginny Says:

      I have little doubt that Obama’s policies will lead to deaths – wars in far away places, terrorist attacks at home, democide by those nasty little men like Putin & Chavez & Ahmadinejad who have been encouraged by his words. Still, given the results of the policies of Carter and the even more purposeful evil of Arafat, the committee isn’t changing course as much as rewarding a “premature peace” maker, apparently understanding the causes for the effects they find attractive. The same, of course, might be true of Gore’s policies. They haven’t killed as they will, of course, when widely enforced.

      Or, perhaps tellingly, European nihilism has reached the point where the most obvious “peaceful” leader is the one who eliminates the most people – we can’t have peace if those pesky warmongering men remain.

    11. jimbino Says:

      As Tom Lehrer remarked,

      Irony became obsolete the day Henry Kissinger was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

      There’s nothing more to be said.

    12. Joe Says:

      Perhaps he’s being nominated because the world community wishes to encourage those rare moments when America’s leaders actually show some intelligence.

      Not any president can be as successful as George W. Bush was–at obtaining rule of a major world power with zero knowledge, outlandish spending, two wars that went nowhere and leaving office without a single discernible contribution to U.S. or global society. But of course the Nobel Prize is a “PEACE” prize and the lower intellect of the average American lacks the complexity to understand how peace is achieved. Apparently ignorance cloaked as a folksy, attractive Alaskan governor (who quit the job early) is what Americans of today identify as “progress and hope for the future.”

      Mr. Obama will not be understood in a land of mediocre education and ignorant perspectives. Americans are inferior in their ability to lead, their resolve to exercise social responsibility, their initiative to help their own people and their ability to keep greed and corporate abuse under control so the country as a whole can flourish.

      The Nobel Peace Prize committee “in particular looked at Obama’s vision and work toward a world without atomic weapons.”

      VISION. Yes, the rest of the world actually contemplates VISION as a desirable human attribute. Not “tough talk on terrorists,” not quarterly profits, not gun ownership, not machismo, not blind devotion to shallow icons of conservatism.

      Vision. Something so rare in America should be praised.

    13. Ginny Says:

      I assume Joe’s tone is ironic?

    14. James R. Rummel Says:

      “Not any president can be as successful as George W. Bush was–at obtaining rule of a major world power with zero knowledge, outlandish spending, two wars that went nowhere and leaving office without a single discernible contribution to U.S. or global society.”

      I did mention in the original post that a new democracy was formed in Iraq under the Bush administration. I didn’t bother to mention the dismantling of the regime of a murderous dictator that indulged in attacking whole villages full of innocent people with poison gas, since that would be redundant.

      And the UN was shown to largely be a sham through the Oil for Food scandal, eroding support for a corrupt organization that arguably causes at least as much harm as good.

      So it looks like there was a very great series of contributions to US and global society through one of those wars that you say “went nowhere.” Not a bad track record, especially when compared to Clinton!

      “Americans are inferior in their ability to lead, their resolve to exercise social responsibility,…”

      Look above to what I said about democracy in Iraq, the shaming of the UN, the dismantling of Saddam’s national terror machine…

      I mean, you certainly didn’t see anyone else except Americans doing something about the problem!

      “VISION. Yes, the rest of the world actually contemplates VISION as a desirable human attribute. Not “tough talk on terrorists,” not quarterly profits, not gun ownership, not machismo, not blind devotion to shallow icons of conservatism.”

      Those too weak or tremulous to take action always hide behind souring rhetoric. The inescapable fact is that there was precious little the rest of the world could do to stop tyrants on their own, after they neutered their military might to pay for social programs.

      All of the criticisms of the Bush administration you list above are belied by the facts, Joe.

    15. James R. Rummel Says:

      “I assume Joe’s tone is ironic?”

      I’ve come across too many similar, and serious, rants by Leftists to be able to tell anymore.

    16. Joe Says:

      No, this is not irony. It’s sincere. In a normal country, people would be proud that their president is being praised by the world community.

      You all think your president being honored is a joke. You’ve completely lost any pride in your own country because it’s not being led by an imbecile of the conservative party. Apparently you only admire snide remarks in your officials, turkey butchering ceremonies and corrupt financial institutions.

      I think intelligence and vision is intimidating in a culture of simpletons–whether it be the NASCAR set, or the groups of single-minded business majors who think they run the country, or hockey moms, or disciples of Oral Roberts or the Fox News audience.

      I think it angers those Americans who can’t be bothered to read or expand their intellect, that a man who came from nothing achieved something that wasn’t handed down to him from his father or bestowed upon him by the aristocracy of wealth that so many Americans worship.

      What’s IRONIC is that the non-wealthy conservatives who aspire to gain admission to this elitist club of wealth are too delusional to realize they never will. So they go on defending Wall Street, defending hedge fund managers, defending rich Republicans, not even understanding that in their sad idolatry, they’ve really just become tools for their heroes to exploit them with.

    17. Joe Says:

      “All of the criticisms of the Bush administration you list above are belied by the facts”

      So Bush did NOT run up record deficits? He did not hand out billions of dollars to failed banks? He did not exceed the $60 billion Dick Cheney promised the Americans the Iraq war would cost and would be PAID back by the Iraq government? (It’s now a trillion dollars, by the way). You consider the hanging of Saddam Hussein to be the end of the war in Iraq?

      You think the “Oil for Food Scandal” was the single most important thing in the U.S. or the World for Bush to focus on?

      Yep. America is in great shape after the “contributions” of eight years of George W. Bush. Just look around–it’s really achieved a shining dream.

      It’s typical for conservatives to ignore facts and then accuse their opponents of ignoring facts that don’t exist. It’s all an extension of conservative ignorance.

    18. Shannon Love Says:

      Joe,

      In a normal country, people would be proud that their president is being praised by the world community.

      In a normal country, people would be proud that their president has actually accomplished something instead of just winning a popularity contest.

      What exactly has Obama accomplished in his 9 months of office that deserves a prize normally reserved for people who end wars. Just from a completely leftists’ perspective what has he accomplished? Did he “end the war” i.e. turn the country over to the bad guys, in Iraq or Afghanistan. Has he set the Middle East on the road to a new Cambodia like his heros in the 70’s did? Has he shut down Bush’s supposedly highly illegal and incredibly evil intelligence apparatus. Has he closed Gitmo?

      Hell, has he reversed Don’t Ask Don’t Tell?

      Obama has accomplished nothing. All he has done is talk, talk, talk. Obama wins the acclaim of the anti-American “world community” because of what he says and what leftists all over the world believe he means to do. That’s it.

      I think intelligence and vision is intimidating in a culture of simpletons…

      Besides his Harvard degree (which Bush matched) what indication do you have that he is actually intelligent? Why do you think he has “vision” when all his ideas are just warmed over 70’s retreads?

      …whether it be the NASCAR set, or the groups of single-minded business majors who think they run the country, or hockey moms, or disciples of Oral Roberts or the Fox News audience.

      Gosh, I sure miss the days when leftists empathized with and even venerated the middle and working class instead of Ivy League elitist. 50 years ago, Fox would have been a Democrat oriented network. Those days are long gone.

      I think it angers those Americans who can’t be bothered to read or expand their intellect, that a man who came from nothing achieved something that wasn’t handed down to him from his father or bestowed upon him by the aristocracy of wealth that so many Americans worship.

      Like Sarah Palin? Hate to break it to you but today, the Democrats are the party of inherited wealth and elite connections. The statistics are quite clear on that. See your own sneering contempt for ordinary people above.

      What’s IRONIC is that the non-wealthy conservatives who aspire to gain admission to this elitist club of wealth are too delusional to realize they never will.

      Except for the 65% of all American millionaires who are self made. Then there are all those computer/internet millionaires. Remind me again, which Martha’s Garden house did Steve Jobs grow up in? Oh, yeah, and how about Michael Moore. He went to Yale didn’t he?

      So they go on defending Wall Street, defending hedge fund managers, defending rich Republicans, not even understanding that in their sad idolatry, they’ve really just become tools for their heroes to exploit them with.

      Right, that’s places like Michigan and California are booming successes and backwards ignorant Texas has a failed state government and an imploding economy. No, wait…

      Just because your a sad little person without dreams and gumption to take a shot at them, don’t project your personal failings and ignorance on other people. If you think all you can do to improve your life and world is to wait around for a politicians to ride by on a white horse and whisk you away to your fairy tale castle, well, fine.

      Just don’t get in the way of those of us with dreams and work to do.

    19. Retardo Says:

      Joe, the point being made here is that Obama has accomplished precisely nothing. That is why we find the award odd, and that is why all thinking people around the world find it odd. It is not only Americans who are perplexed; it is everybody with a brain.

      Honoring somebody for nothing IS a joke. Obama was given the reward for reciting a few pieties. You can call it “intelligence and vision”, but reciting pieties is easy. Any idiot can do it. You’ve done it in this thread. Where’s your prize?

      Americans have been demonstrating leadership in every meaningful area since 1776. Our poor people have a better standard of living than the lower middle class in Europe, and we’ve achieved that while footing most of the bill for Europe’s defense since 1946 — right after we picked up most of the bill for saving Europe from itself in the war. If you look at Nobel Prizes for real achievements in the sciences, you’ll notice that we lead the world pretty dramatically there.

      You are an idiot.

    20. Retardo Says:

      And by the way, Joe, you wouldn’t be here flaming us if you didn’t know we’re right.

    21. onparkstreet Says:

      Me thinks someone doth protest too much….The world wide jokes getting to you?

      Heading from an email message I received today: “EVEN I’M APPALLED,” from a dear friend who is a dedicated progressive.

      Oh, and Joe, one of the best features of a free society is the, er, freedom with which the citizen makes funny comments about their politicians. Look at any website from any free country; it’s all the same – citizens grousing about there politicians. It’s normal, it’s nothing new, and your lot did it with great glee, too. The jokes, this time around at least, are rather clever. Twitter is afire!!!!

      In your heart of hearts you know there is nothing wrong with making fun of a silly situation, whether it’s Reagan Jokes, Bush Jokes, Clinton Jokes, or Obama Jokes. It’s part of freedom and freedom is messy, difficult, glorious, creative and maddening. Welcome to a free country and its rambunctious free citizens, Joe.

    22. onparkstreet Says:

      The above was addressed to Joe, if that didn’t seem clear :)

    23. Joe Says:

      Clearly, Obama would have to cure cancer, invent a perpetual motion machine, raise the DJIA to 50,000 and ascend into heaven at the end of his term, for all of you to stop whining.

      He’s barely been in office 9 months and even those amongst you feigning liberal sentiments (Shannon) are ready to toss him into the Tiber.

      My condolences for the University of Chicago failing you in your adult education, however the executive of the United States is not conferred with the power of a totalitarian (despite Cheney’s best efforts) and so Obama cannot just wave a wand and transform everything to a state of perfection.

      It is the “tenor” of the president, the “vision” of the president and the “philosophy” of the president that defines progress in any presidential term. Those intangibles do not materialize in only 9 months. However the global community recognizes that the traits Obama exhibits do have merit and are sending a message, vis-a-vis the Nobel Prize, that the global community supports a U.S. leader who has more dimensions than the former president–who was content to drive a two-ton pick-up around a desolate Texas ranch.

      Still you’ve all proven what the emerging criticism of conservativism is: That you have no real ideas, you offer no solutions to accompany your mean-spirited criticisms, you just like to sit around and whine. When someone gets sick of your whining, all you do is shoot out meaningless barbs. Never do you hear a conservative say: “You have a point,” or “I see what you’re saying,” or “Oh, I didn’t consider that.” Conservatives are always right, all of the time and unless you hate along with them, you’re an “idiot” or you didn’t have the perceptiveness to recognize the understated majesty of George w. Bush.

      “Welcome to a free country and its rambunctious free citizens, Joe.”

      Why is offering my opinion suddenly an affront to “freedom?” Many countries are free: Canada, Australia, Japan, France, England, Germany, Norway, Ireland, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, etc. etc.

      Apparently if you say something a conservative can’t handle, you’re suddenly not respecting free speech. You’re a censor wandering around the land of the free. Well, I’ve spoken freely, so welcome to my world.

    24. onparkstreet Says:

      My, you are an angry man, Joe.

      “In a normal country, people would be proud that their president is being praised by the world community.” – Joe

      Joe, I was responding to your comment above. It’s perfectly normal to make fun of a funny situation and I was simply reminding you of that. YOU started by chiding US for our practicing our free speech, remember?

      Also, uh, my family is from India, and the world community is a complex place with complex ideas about things, including President Obama. There is no such thing as a unified global community, if there was, the land of my birth wouldn’t be at odds with a certain country on its eastern border. To the point that it represents a nuclear ‘hot spot.’ Uh oh.

      What the Nobel really represents, apparently, is a certain type of progressive European political sentiment which, through the prize, means to reward the President for ‘future’ accomplishments. That is the reason for the astonishment – as prizes are meant to reward things already accomplished.

      I need to go to the gym now, and normally I don’t respond to such things, but I am curious as to why you are so upset at a few harmless jokes? I’m actually quite serious. I’d say the same to a conservative who was upset by a harmless Bush joke. They are just jokes…..

    25. Tatyana Says:

      That you have no real ideas, you offer no solutions to accompany your mean-spirited criticisms, you just like to sit around and whine. When someone gets sick of your whining, all you do is shoot out meaningless barbs. Never do you hear a conservative say: “You have a point,” or “I see what you’re saying,” or “Oh, I didn’t consider that.” Conservatives are always right

      Change “conservatives” to “mom” and “you have no real ideas” to “I don’t like what you tell me to do even if my own ideas are proved wrong many times over” – and you’ll get typical conversation with my then 13-years old son.

      Please stop stomping the floor with your foot, Joe. That’s so unbecoming to a boy of your age.

    26. Laura(southernxyl) Says:

      Vision.

      Would that be like:

      Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!

    27. Ada Says:

      ”65% of all American millionaires who are self mad” I think the numbers are going to continue exploding…. a recent film ”The YES Movie ”documented today young entrepreneurs http://www.TheYESmovie.com by Louis Lautman