Hot on HuffPost:

See More Stories

Obama's Is Actually the Fourth Anti-Bush Nobel Peace Prize

5 years ago
  0 Comments Say Something  »
Text Size
The Nobel Peace Prize was a nice consolation for President Obama not getting the Olympics for his adopted hometown, but that doesn't explain the decision by the Norwegian inscrutables – they apparently voted before the I.O.C. chose Rio over Chicago for the 2016 Olympic Games. One plausible motivation is that the Europeans really, really wanted to vote for Obama in the 2008 election, but, well, they can't vote in U.S. elections. But they could certainly vote against George W. Bush.

So the Nobel committee was telling us how they felt about our guy, as if we didn't know already. Or, perhaps it was a preemptive strike: If they give it to Obama, they don't have to give it to Bill Clinton, who has been openly coveting the peace prize for the better part of two decades.

The real reason, of course, was no mystery: European liberals just can't tell us enough times how dumb they think we were for sending Bush to the White House. (Twice!) Nor is this the first anti-Bush, anti-Republican Party Nobel. By my count, it's the fourth. The first was Jimmy Carter, who did not win, as he should have, for a lifetime of working for Habitat for Humanity or for spending his retirement traveling to the least desirable tourist destinations on the globe to monitor elections.

No, they gave it to Carter, by their own admission, because of his consistently churlish, partisan and un-presidential sniping at Bush over the looming U.S. invasion of Iraq: "It should be interpreted," a Norwegian functionary named Gunnar Berge said of Carter's prize, "as a kick in the leg." Bush's leg, that is.

Okay, but the Oslo orgy was just getting going. In 2007, Al Gore shared a peace prize for his work on global warming. That issue is hardly about the promotion of "fraternity between nations" or "the reduction of standing armies" (the stated Nobel criteria), but they couldn't resist: Here was yet another area in which the elites in the "world community" found Bush wanting. After all, wasn't Gore the guy Bush stole the election from?

A year later, Paul Krugman won a Nobel Prize in economics, supposedly for his work on showing that the tide of global trade really was lifting all boats, yachts and dugout canoes. But was there still a serious debate about that in 2008? (Oh, yes, but only in the Democratic Party, where Obama ran as a protectionist against free-traders like Hillary Clinton.) Ironic, but irrelevant, 'cause Krugman's real claim to fame was the relentlessly anti-Bush invective he dispensed weekly during the Bush era in his New York Times column. Oslo loves that, by its own admission.

The statement issued by the Norwegian Nobel Committee on Friday consisted of four little paragraphs of code words that continue to kick Bush in the leg. Many conservatives were beside themselves, and you can't really blame them. But even liberals were laughing about the award. One parlor game was whimsically naming various other Bush antagonists – Arianna Huffington, the Dixie Chicks, the Iraqi television journalist who threw his shoes at Bush – as possible future Nobel laureates.

One friend of mine quipped that Obama ought to take Kanye West to the Scandinavian acceptance ceremony. (He wouldn't be shy about telling the committee who they should have picked.) Noting that White House officials had announced that the $1.4 million cash award that goes with the peace prize will be donated to charity – but didn't specify which non-profit would receive the largesse – this buddy also deadpanned that Obama ought to give the money to ACORN.

While watching college football over the weekend, I mentioned to my longtime friend George Condon, White House correspondent for Congress Daily, that the competition for the Heisman Trophy seemed wide open this year. I asked George if he had anyone on his radar screen. "You're probably going to laugh," he replied, as I scanned my brain for the Ohio State Buckeye whom George had in mind. "But I'm thinking . . . Obama."
Outbrain - The Most Trusted Content Discovery Platform

Get Your Content Discovered.

Promote your content on premium websites

Learn More ›

Outbrain Amplify:
Get your content discovered

Your content will be promoted on the web's largest and most respected media properties, including, Slate and ESPN. We make sure it's seen precisely when people will find it most interesting.

Learn More

Outbrain Engage: The solution for a modern publisher

Outbrain Engage is a full stack software solution that empowers an entire media organization to more effectively manage its online content and programming experience.

Learn More

The world's largest content discovery platform

We bring together premium publishers and marketers of all sizes (including many of the world's leading brands) into the world's largest and most vibrant content marketplace. Learn more about Outbrain ›

561 Million

The global audience reached by Outbrain each month*

190 Billion

The total recommendations we serve consumers monthly


Of the world’s leading brands use Outbrain

* Audience reach according to comScore, September 2014. Leading brands via Ad Age DataCenter / Kantar Media, 2014.

Andy Blau
We selected Outbrain not only because the revenues were higher than others, but because its engine drives better recommendations than others.
Andy Blau
Senior Vice President, Group General Manager
Time Inc.
Dan Horowitz
It's less about buying traffic than it is about reaching the right people with relevant headlines to get them to your content.
Dan Horowitz
EVP and Senior Partner
Fleishman-Hillard Digital
Katrina Craigwell
Our goal is always to deliver content that adds value to the conversations being held by the end user. Outbrain allows us to do just that.
Katrina Craigwell
Global Manager of Digital Marketing
Bailey Foote
The fact that we’re able to drive these kinds of transactions with consumers at scale and with increasing efficiency has made Outbrain paramount to our marketing strategy.
Bailey Foote
E-commerce Manager
The Line
Neal Moore
You cannot leave it to chance that someone will find and engage with your content. Outbrain can put your content in the midst of the world’s most prestigious publications.
Neal Moore
Zach Zavos
Having links to our content appearing directly on premium publisher sites helped us establish our brand.
Zach Zavos
Conversant Media
Mike Brito
Outbrain is one of those [critical] components helping us deliver the right messages to the right contingent at massive scale and in real time to counter a crisis.
Mike Brito
Group Director

A global footprint of service

We operate offices in 11 global territories and we partner with publishers and marketers in over 55 countries, including the U.S., UK, France, Brazil, India and Japan. Come join us ›

Our New Approach to Comments

In an effort to encourage the same level of civil dialogue among Politics Daily’s readers that we expect of our writers – a “civilogue,” to use the term coined by PD’s Jeffrey Weiss – we are requiring commenters to use their AOL or AIM screen names to submit a comment, and we are reading all comments before publishing them. Personal attacks (on writers, other readers, Nancy Pelosi, George W. Bush, or anyone at all) and comments that are not productive additions to the conversation will not be published, period, to make room for a discussion among those with ideas to kick around. Please read our Help and Feedback section for more info.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum Comment Moderation Enabled. Your comment will appear after it is cleared by an editor.

Follow Politics Daily

  • Comics
Featuring political comics by Robert and Donna TrussellMore>>
  • Woman UP Video
politics daily videos
Weekly Videos
Woman Up, Politics Daily's Online Sunday ShowMore»
politics daily videos
TV Appearances
Showcasing appearances by Politics Daily staff and contributors.More>>