Friday, October 09, 2009

Nobel Laureate?

I was going to post a little self-absorbed piece about a dispute over three pats of butter today, but then I learned of Obama's Nobel Prize. Seems like a significantly bigger deal, enough so that I'll save my butter issues for later.

Wow. I'll have to think about this one a bit. You?

And aside: here a link to a short piece at It's interesting because it features perspectives from two former Nobel Peace Prize winners, exactly the kind of folks that labored in relative obscurity for years before the Nobel brought them much-deserved world attention. And... they think it's great that Obama won. Read it HERE.



Blogger Mark Lavallee said...

I think more than anything it signifies that the United States is starting to come out of Rehab.

It's a fallacy to blame everything that has happened on Bush, but the fact remains that Bush SR, Rumsfeld and Cheney have been neck deep in the buildup to this point (and 9/11) for a long time. Reagan, Carter and Clinton are not blameless either.

And then there's the public. We're "high fat consumers" and in a lot of ways lemmings and very obedient to our children - these things have been said to describe us. They are not unfair stereotypes.

However, I believe that this is very reflective of the return of a United States from a time past; that we as a people are standing up and starting to say "enough".

Whether you like President Obama or not, it's a great honor to the President of the United States and I for one, am very proud to be a citizen of a country that elected a Nobel Prize winner.

I hope others will get behind the news as a positive for the country. We really needed a "win".

6:14 PM  
Blogger Kate Elliott said...

Quite unexpected.

Definitely an honor, although I'm not sure if it helps Pres. Obama in the medium term.

However, he took what struck me as exactly the right tone in his remarks. But then, he seems to almost always manage that, which is why I like him.

7:51 PM  
Anonymous Ethan Iktho said...

Quite unexpected, I would say.

Some people have dedicated their whole life to the promotion of peace in their country, around it or in the world, and they'll never get a Nobel Prize for what they have done, because they've never been on TV.

Here comes some guy unknown from the world five years ago, who's done nothing yet but say "yes we can" and got elected in his own country, and he gets the Nobel Prize.

Don't get me wrong, but seen from outside USA (you know, the rest of what some call "the world"), it seems quite amazing, at least for the time being.

But, well, let's get back to the main subject :

Imagine Corinn Akaran being given the same kind of distinction just because she came after Hanish Mein...

Isn't it why we all like the way David writes ?

11:56 PM  
Blogger Mark Lavallee said...

lol I love the people on this blog! :)

12:40 AM  
Blogger Bryan Russell said...

As much as I respect the man, and as excited as I am to see what he can accomplish, this honour seems... premature. It seems like the sort of thing you give a president after he's served his terms in office, at a point when you can look back and objectively evaluate his accomplishments and contributions.

I'm a fan, but... seems like it's jumping the gun a bit.

Just my thoughts.

My best, as always,
Bryan Russell

10:15 AM  
Blogger David Anthony Durham said...

Thanks for your thoughts. I admit to being completely taken by surprise. I also admit that my first reaction was that it was really too soon, but those are reactions, not necessarily completely thought out ones.

I'm kinda holding off on entirely forming my opinion because I'd really like to weigh it up from a variety of perspectives. I don't think the Nobel committee made the choice lightly, or that they were star struck or that it's just a Bush-hating thing. I actually have faith that they think in longer terms than that.

One of the things that comes to mind in favor of it only works if you think in terms of the award being about more than Obama personally. Put aside for a moment the notion of HIM receiving the award and think about it in terms of a figure of significant cultural importance winning. Not the man, but what the man represents.

Like, if somebody had done the science to break through America's hundreds of years of history of racism, had made us see black people as capable of any office, had managed to explain that it was possible that a black man could one day live in a that white house built by black slaves (property, chattel, people that were whip, beaten, sold, bred, raped, considering scientifically and morally inferior)... Well, I think the scientist or historian or writer that could work that change on us would be worthy of a Nobel Prize. It's huge, and anyone that shrugs and think that's no big deal likely hasn't read as much about America's slavery history as I have. It's a huge step forward, one that - whether we all see it right now or not - is an enormous game changer. Not just for America, but for the world.

Now, I'm not saying that to argue that I think he should have this award right now. I'm just trying to think laterally a bit...

One thing I am sure of: Corinn is not yet worthy of a Nobel Prize.

6:03 PM  
Blogger Mark Lavallee said...

Not "yet"? Is that a hint? ... :)

6:36 PM  
Blogger David Anthony Durham said...

Oh, ye careful readers!

I'm just saying, you never know what the future holds. Just saying...

8:26 AM  

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