I’m not really sure how many Nobel Prizes they give out, but so far at least the committee has snubbed President Obama despite the fact that it voted to award him one during his very first year in office. See “President Wins 2009 Nobel Prize for Not Being George W. Bush,” Lowering the Bar (Oct. 9, 2009). Some were surprised by that award, coming at a time when the new president had not really had time to do much more than memorize the combination to his White House gym locker. But Obama did arrive in office fully qualified to not be George W. Bush, and there was no reason he should not have been able to not be him again in 2010. But so far, no prize.
The committee also overlooked him for the Nobel Peace Prize, which it instead gave out last week to some guy who has not done anything but be sent to prison for 11 years for peacefully advocating democracy in China. Granted, Liu Xiaobo has working for human rights and freedom in that country, at great personal risk to himself, for over 20 years, and is a remarkable symbol not only of self-sacrifice and struggle but also of forgiveness, even for his persecutors, but still, imagine what President Obama might be spurred to do if he got a Peace Prize.
Hang on a sec.
I’m just rereading my notes here.
Well, it turns out that Obama actually got a Nobel Peace Prize in advance last year, but maybe his accomplishments since then have not been everything the committee had hoped for.
- Guantanamo seems to still be open.
- The United States is still fighting either one or two wars, depending on who you ask.
- I think I heard there were going to be peace talks to settle the Arab-Israeli conflict, so maybe that has been resolved?
- Also, it says here that Obama contends, as the last guy did, that “the President has the right to sentence Americans to death with no due process or charges of any kind, but his decisions as to who will be killed and why he wants them dead are ’state secrets,’ and thus no court may adjudicate their legality.” But that can’t be right.