President Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize.
I voted for Obama. I am a Democrat, VERY liberal on social issues, and somewhat conservative on economic ones. I believe that gay couples should be allowed to marry, and it's a sin that they can't. I believe that Medical care isn't something that should be based on your income. I believe that it's an amazing thing that we finally have an African-American President.
I believe that the right-wing extremists are mostly scared at the loss of power for their main base, that being old, white men. I think they are grabbing at any sort of garbage they can throw at Obama (For the last freakin' time, Nazis are NOT Socialists. In fact, you can't really find anything MORE opposite a Socialist than a Fascist), and the undercurrent of racism in their claims is truly an awful thing for this country. Fear is driving the Republican party to the extremes of the right (real, live Nazis!).
I also believe there are lots of people in this country who believe very differently from me, and they have their own personal reasons to do so, just as I do with my beliefs. They have that right, same as I do.
That being said....
How can a President who's been in power 2 weeks get nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, let alone win it? I have no doubt that Obama's policies and desires are to repair our relations around the world, as well as the damage done by our former leadership on an international level. However, it's not the "Congrats, You're Not George W. Bush" Prize, and, frankly, the Obama administration hasn't really accomplished anything other than rhetoric on the issues.
Sure, part of the Nobel doctrine is to encourage work for peace, not just reward it. As the committee said, the Award "was meant to build momentum behind Obama's initiatives to reduce nuclear arms, ease tensions with the Muslim world and stress diplomacy and cooperation rather than unilateralism." Great, but other than a speech in Cairo, and getting elected over a recurrence of the Bush policies (and I still have my doubts that McCain would've blindly followed Bush)...Where's the beef?
There's more than a hint here that the Nobel committee just REALLY disliked Bush, and was REALLY happy Obama was elected. Much like the tenor of the election, which continues among the people who cannot fathom, and get more than a little strident with, the idea that I think this move is more than a little premature, they maybe should've played Living Colour's Cult of Personality while making the announcement. Lets say we flash forward 5 years, after a successful Obama Presidency, in which he succeeds with the stated goals, and yes, please, Nobel Prize.
Does it do any harm?
Here's the really tricky point. No, it's no skin off my nose that Obama has the medallion. The cash will certainly go to worthwhile organizations. That being said, get ready for another round of right-wing freaking out over this, and then a round of left-wing freaking out over the right-wing freaking out. Ultimate result? The battle lines are deeper, and even less co-operation is possible. Anybody who thinks this will further his domestic agenda is smoking some high-grade stuff. Internationally? They love him already.
I love my President. I'm with him on his way of handling himself, and the country. Obama is already, rightly, an important President, simply because of the color of his skin (sad but true), but his most fervent supporters (the ones who elected a messiah, not a man) will not rest until he's a GREAT President. The Nobel committee seems to be following that path. I see so many people with so much personal stakes in his greatness, I fear what will happen if he's not great, or, Like Jimmy Carter, a much greater Ex-President than President. You cannot declare a great President, they have to earn it.
I think he can earn it, why don't we let him?