A Truly Noble Nobel — Should Gore Really Have Gotten This Prize?

19 October 2007 at 11:50 am 5 comments

| David Hoopes |

So, my last use of the word noble was a typo, but I left it in case someone might think I’m clever.

Am I the only one who finds Vice President Gore’s prize to be a trifle disturbing?

Former guest blogger extrodinaire Steve Postrel’s post “Taxes al Carbon” raised a number of issues regarding common assumptions on the extent and causes of global warming.

Many people seem to concede (including Gore) that his movie is often incorrect. However, this is rationalized because the issue merits more attention than it gets.

Does anyone else wish the peace prize had more to do with peace?

Entry filed under: Former Guest Bloggers, People.

More on the Noble Prize (or the Economics Prize in Memory of Nobel) Podcasts with the Big Boys

5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. spostrel  |  19 October 2007 at 7:56 pm

    The Peace prize has been something of a joke to those of us outside the transnational progressive camp for some time. It seems to be a way for a committee of Norwegian leftists to express their ideological commitments rather than a vehicle for promoting peacemaking. My favorite awards in this regard were the ones for Helen Caldicott and her useful idiots and the one for Yassir Arafat.

    The idea that a just peace results only from a) relatively well-intentioned people b) using force or its threat c) intelligently to d) thwart the aims of the badly intentioned actors who e) exist in every culture and every era just does not compute with the Nobel committee.

    Their view, as small-country transnational progressives, stresses the importance of 1) using legal and moral pressure to bind the powerful, especially the well-intentioned who are most susceptible to such suasion, so as 2) to ensure that the bad-intentioned are not frightened or provoked unduly, 3) the weak but well-intentioned can have an equal voice in deciding international questions, 4) the well-intentioned and powerful can be held to higher standards of conduct than anyone else, and 4) bien-pensant intellectuals, lawyers, and bureaucrats can be given ever more power to order the lives of the economy and society.

    Hence we see many (though not all by any means) Nobel Peace awards for anti-American, pro-collectivist actors. It’s even better when the winners are themselves Americans. This committee tendency is especially pronounced when a less apologeticly forceful American foreign policy is in play, as when Reagan and Bush the Second were at the helm. Gore’s moralistic attacks on US policy fit the committee’s prejudices perfectly.

  • 2. Cliff Grammich  |  19 October 2007 at 9:10 pm

    When did Caldicott win the Nobel Peace Prize?

  • 3. Nat Almirall  |  22 October 2007 at 10:01 am

    Their reasoning is odd, too: “for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change, and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change”

    Doesn’t “build up” mean “hype” or “exaggerate”?

    And doesn’t “to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change” imply the prize is as much a grant as an award? Does the committee believe that spreading awareness is more important than creating a solution?

  • 4. srp  |  22 October 2007 at 9:07 pm

    Cliff: International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War copped a Nobel Peace prize in 1985. She was a founder and prime mover in it.

  • 5. Cliff Grammich  |  23 October 2007 at 4:31 pm

    D’oh! I forgot about that . . . thanks for the correction.

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