The Nobel Peace Prize has been a lot like the guy who sits in the corner of your office. It doesn’t seem like he does anything useful, but he doesn’t really seem to be hurting anyone. After a while he becomes part of the wallpaper. You don’t really think about him and that blinds you to his descent into complete madness.
The Nobel Peace Prize was marginally defensible in the last century. It wasn’t worthwhile or noble, it often went to bad people, but there was at least some kind of guiding logic to it. The Peace Prize was supposed to go to people who ended conflicts. If you were an American president who mediated an end to a war or if you were the leader of a government that chose to engage in high profile peace negotiations, then the chances were good that you would end up with one of those prizes which would entitle you to a lifetime of free furniture from IKEA and rubber chicken dinners with the elite somewhere very cold.
Then the Nobel Peace Prize lost its mind. It was taken over by the same people who run Time Magazine’s Man of the Year.
Before 2000 to win one of these you had to promote peace. After 2000, to win a Nobel Peace Prize all you had to do was be Anti-Bush. Or be encouraged to be preemptively against Bush.
Kofi Annan and the UN won one in 2001. Jimmy Carter won one in 2002. El Baradei won one in 2005. Al Gore won one in 2007. Obama won one shortly after taking office. Now it’s been awarded to the European Union. And it’s a good thing too because the EU is running low on funds and could use the prize money.
The only method to the madness which has led to three Americans winning the award within a decade, already completely unprecedented, and four international/transnational agencies within four years, is that the Nobel Peace Prize now exists mainly to reward anyone who obstructs American foreign policy while blatantly promoting the most powerful transnational organizations.
There is no “Peace” in the Nobel Peace Prize anymore. It’s not about resolving conflicts, though occasionally Third Worlders still get the trophy, it’s a beauty contest for the transnational camp and a Letters to the Editor section against the Bush Administration.
The Nobel Peace Prize no longer rewards efforts, it points out what good thinking is and denounces bad thinking by example. It’s a lever of ideological conformity. It’s the homecoming dance for the transnational crowd of bureaucrats and do-gooders. It’s the Oscar for people who found useless international charities and collect fortunes running international organizations.
With the European Union award, the Nobel Peace Prize jumps the shark, just as Time Magazine did when it declared that the Person of the Year was “You.” Like Time, the Nobel Committee has gone and declared that the Transnational Organization of the Year is EU.