The big news, of course, is that President Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize today. Now, I know this award isn't always given to the most awesome people (come on down Mother Teresa, Kofi Annan, Henry Kissinger and Yasser Arafat!) but the committee gets the award right more than they get it wrong.
Which is why Obama winning it is even more confusing. He won "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples". Which is nice and dandy and great and I'm happy Obama is President (I voted for him in full disclosure). But Nobel Peace Prize? Really?
But then again, maybe it makes TOTAL sense because between September 11, 2001 and January 20, 2009, the United States refused to listen to anyone about anything. Obama on the campaign trail and since he has become President has said, "We're going to listen, we might not (and probably won't) do want you want us to do, but we'll listen." And for that, for just listening, he has won the Nobel Peace Prize. He won because he did want we should have been doing all along. Which again, I don't think is necessarily a reason to win... but hey whatever. It's not my award.
Now the right will be pissed off. Partisan politics will rear its petty head and people will be upset about him winning the Nobel Peace Prize. Their anger will be something like "he's in bed with the European left" blah blah blah. (which is hilarious because the Europeans apparently didn't like him last week when they voted for Madrid over Chicago for the Olympics; they hated him last week but love him this week go figure). But I don't think winning the Nobel Peace Prize is a bad thing. In fact it is a good thing, and it restores some honor to the United States and the Office of the President (our last two Presidents either cheated on their wives or decided to pick wars or fights with other countries; it hasn't been a good 16 years for the Office of the President).
So to recap:
Did Obama deserve it? Probably not.
Why did he win? Because he listens to other countries.
He won because he listens? Yes. And he's not George W. Bush.
You're kidding? No.
That's kind of cool? In a fucked up way, yes.
But sort of sad? Yes totally sad that you can now win the Nobel Peace Prize for listening.
Is Obama winning a bad thing? No.
Should we be upset that he won? No.
Should we dislike him more now that he won? No.
Then why will people be upset? Because they're petty and they hate to see the other guys do well (I'll confess, I hate it when the Cubs or Red Wings win).
Does this help or hurt Obama? I say help him. But others will disagree. There's really no way winning the Nobel Peace Prize can hurt you. Unless you go to war three years from now because of oil/distract the world from the fact that you let the real enemy get away.
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