Thursday, October 15, 2009

Peggy Noonan: "A Wicked and Ignorant Award."

Peggy Noonan is insane.

In her latest article she berates the fact that Obama has been awarded the Nobel peace prize, calling it "wicked and ignorant" and then she states:

Some Peace Prizes have been more roughly political, or had a political edge, and were of course debatable. Woodrow Wilson, self-infatuated after World War I, had little patience with those who foresaw that the Peace of Versailles would lead to more war, and did not understand or know the political realities and deeper nature of his own countrymen. And so his League of Nations flopped in America, the one place where it absolutely had to succeed. But--well, he helped end "the war to end all wars," issued his Fourteen Points, did try to make the world better. Ferocious Teddy Roosevelt, that progressive and bloody-minded man, worked hard to forge a truce and a peace between the czar's Russia and Japan.

More deeply into the political life of the 20th century, there were Jimmy Carter and Al Gore, and their Peace Prizes were what they were. But each man had a body of work; each had devoted considerable time and effort to a great issue. It was always absurd that Ronald Reagan, whose political project led to the end of the gulag and the fall of the Berlin Wall, and who gambled his personal standing in the world for a system that would protect the common man from annihilation in a nuclear missile attack, could not win it. But nobody wept over it, and for one reason: because everyone, every sentient adult who cared to know about such things, knew that the Nobel Peace Prize is, when awarded to a political figure, a great and prestigious award given by liberals to liberals. NCNA--no conservatives need apply. This is the way of the world, and so what? Life isn't for prizes.

There is the Republican argument right there, the Nobel peace prize is "a prestigious award given by liberals to liberals".

But she acknowledged , in the preceding paragraph, that Teddy Roosevelt - a Republican - has already been given this award.

And one only has to read the briefest part of his biography to realise the myriad of ways in which he differs from the modern Republican:
His specific achievements are numerous. Perhaps his greatest contribution was his work for conservation. During his tenure in the White House from 1901 to 1909, he designated 150 National Forests, the first 51 Federal Bird Reservations, 5 National Parks, the first 18 National Monuments, the first 4 National Game Preserves, and the first 21 Reclamation Projects. Altogether, in the seven-and-one-half years he was in office, he provided federal protection for almost 230 million acres, a land area equivalent to that of all the East coast states from Maine to Florida.

Aside from his conservation efforts, he "busted" trusts bringing the large corporations under the control of the people; he began the
Panama Canal ( Panama Canal and - more canal photos); he established the Department of Commerce and Labor; he negotiated an end to the Russo-Japanese War and thereby won the Nobel Peace Prize; he preached a "Square Deal" for all Americans, enabling millions to earn a living wage; he built up the Navy as the "Big Stick," thus establishing America as a major world power; he reduced the National debt by over $90,000,000; and he secured the passage of the Elkins Act and the Hepburn Act for regulation of the railroads, the Meat Inspection Act and the Pure Food and Drug Act for consumer protection, and the Federal Employers' Liability Act for Labor.
Roosevelt was inclined to preserve America's national parks and help the underdog, whilst the cry at the last election was, "Drill, baby, drill!" and calls for even more tax breaks for the super rich.

We have spent the last eight years watching Republicans goading their president to attack Iran and decrying any form of negotiation as appeasement. Their last presidential candidate spent the campaign telling anyone who would listen that he wanted to kick Russia out of the G8; a move which was so bold that, in the words of Fareed Zakaria, it would be seen around the world as an "attempt by Washington to begin a new Cold War." So, the Republicans are not a party of peacemakers, and they are very proud of that fact. Indeed, they often fall over each other in their attempt to show just how intransigent they can be.

So, Noonan has a point that no modern Republican could ever win a peace prize, but it's not because of the bias which she assumes, it's because of what the modern Republican party has become.

They are a bunch of lunatic sociopaths, and lunatic sociopaths tend not to win peace prizes.


Keith Olbermann on just how far to the right the new Republicans are. They are now protesting Lyndsey Graham because he is not right wing enough.

Click title for Noonan's diatribe.


theBhc said...


I'm so sick of this mythical version of WWII, and WWI for that matter. Noonan is a corporate tool, nothing more. For a real understanding of WWII, WWI, and further back,I highly recommend,

The Anglo-US Drive into Eurasia and the Demonization of Russia
Reframing the History of World War II

by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya

I've been telling people for years that Hitler's western front was just blow back. The UK and especially the US had been building up Hilter's arms for years. Chamberlain's "appeasement" was to neutralize French treaties with Czechoslovakia and Poland and to act as bait for Hitler to head east, which he did start to do.

Kel, I'm telling you, read that article.

Kel said...

Sorry Bhc, it took me a while to read it, but I did find it fascinating.