Friday, October 12, 2012

(OT) Friday Humor: European Union Wins Nobel Peace Prize

Peace? In Europe?

Nigel Farage, leader of Britain's fiercely eurosceptic UKIP party, added: "This goes to show that the Norwegians really do have a sense of humor." (Reuter's article, below)

The Norwegian committee should have asked citizens in Greece and Spain at least.

The same committee awarded the current US president the same prize for his presidential campaign in 2008. Past recipients for Nobel Peace Prize include Henry Kissinger, Jimmy Carter, Dalai Lama, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

To be on the candidate list for a Nobel Prize, someone has to nominate the person or entity to the committee. I wonder who nominated the EU.

As the Reuter article below notes, Norway is not part of the EU, and is doing very well. The article also duly notes an infuriated Greek citizen.

From Reuters (10/12/2012):

(Reuters) - The European Union won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for promoting peace, democracy and human rights over six decades in an award seen as a morale boost as the bloc struggles to resolve its economic crisis.

The award served as a reminder that the EU had largely brought peace to a continent which tore itself apart in two world wars in which tens of millions died.

The EU has transformed most of Europe "from a continent of wars to a continent of peace," Nobel Committee Chairman Thorbjoern Jagland said in announcing the award in Oslo.

"The EU is currently undergoing grave economic difficulties and considerable social unrest," Jagland said. "The Norwegian Nobel Committee wishes to focus on what it sees as the EU's most important result: the successful struggle for peace and reconciliation and for democracy and human rights."

Jagland praised the EU for rebuilding Europe from the devastation of World War Two and for its role in spreading stability after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.

While welcomed by European leaders, the award will have little practical effect on the debt crisis afflicting the single currency zone, which has brought economic instability and social unrest to several states with rioting in Athens and Madrid.

On the streets of the Greek capital, where demonstrators have burned Nazi flags to protest against German demands for austerity, the award was greeted with disbelief.

"Is this a joke?" asked Chrisoula Panagiotidi, 36, a beautician who lost her job three days ago. "It's the last thing I would expect. It mocks us and what we are going through right now. All it will do is infuriate people here."

The prize, worth $1.2 million, will be presented in Oslo on December 10. It was not immediately clear who from the EU would be there to collect the cheque and what it would be spent on.


Conceived in secret at a chateau near Brussels, what is now the European Union was created by the 1957 Treaty of Rome, signed with great fanfare in the Italian capital's 15th century Palazzo dei Conservatori.

The six-state 'common market' it founded grew into the 27-nation European Union ranging from Ireland's Atlantic shores to the borders of Russia.

At the time the Cold War was in full swing after Soviet tanks put down an anti-communist rebellion in Budapest. Western countries led by the United States had formed NATO and the Kremlin responded with the Warsaw Pact.

But the EU is now mired in crisis with enormous strains between capitals over the euro, the common currency shared by 17 nations and created to further economic and monetary union.

Politicians in Germany, one of the main forces behind the foundation of the EU, were delighted with the award.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Europe's most powerful leader, said it was a "wonderful decision". French President Francois Hollande, whose country has with Germany formed the EU's main axis of power, said it was an "immense honor".

Helmut Kohl, the chancellor who reunified Germany and pushed the country into the euro, said: "The Nobel Peace Prize for the EU is above all a confirmation of the European peace project,"

After centuries of war on the continent the EU has been at peace within its borders, but its effort to stop war in former Yugoslavia -- an initiative hailed by one minister as "the hour of Europe" -- was a failure.

The British government, less committed to the European ideal than other EU members, made no comment on the prize. Ed Balls, a senior member of the opposition Labour Party, remarked sarcastically: "They'll be cheering in Athens tonight, won't they?"

Nigel Farage, leader of Britain's fiercely eurosceptic UKIP party, added: "This goes to show that the Norwegians really do have a sense of humor."


In Madrid, Francisco Gonzalez expressed bafflement. "I don't see the logic in the EU getting this prize right now. They can't even agree among themselves," the 62-year-old businessman said.

In Berlin, public relations worker Astrid Meinicke, 46, was also skeptical. "I find it curious. I think the EU could have engaged itself a bit better, especially in Syria," she said, near the city's historic Brandenburg Gate.

In the home of the peace prize, many Norwegians are bitterly opposed to the EU, seeing it as a threat to the sovereignty of nation states. "I find this absurd," the leader of Norway's anti-EU membership organization Heming Olaussen told state broadcaster NRK.

Norway has twice voted "no" to joining the EU, in 1972 and 1994. The country has prospered outside the bloc, partly thanks to huge oil and gas resources.

Among those tipped to win was Russia's small Ekho Moskvy radio, a frequent critic of the Kremlin. Editor in chief Alexei Venediktov conceded the prize to a worthy winner.

"We are only 115. They are 500 million. It is an honor (to lose to the EU)," he told Reuters.

(Reporting by Alister Doyle, Terje Solsvik and Reuters European bureaux; Writing by Giles Elgood; editing by Philippa Fletcher)

The award money of $1.2 million is probably enough to hire one or two technocrats at Brussels for a year or so.


Maju said...

I think that the Nobel Peace Prize lost all its credibility when it was given to Obama three years ago. Just after he, as elect President totally shrugged off in silence the Zionist genocidal attacks against Gaza Strip (for example).

At that time one could say it had degenerated into a popularity prize but the EU? It's not even popular anymore, sorry.

The other Nobels may still be respectable but the Peace Prize has no credibility anymore. It is an ugly joke.

Next? I'd propose the inventors of the Cold War deterrence, the so-called M.A.D. theory, or the NATO troops in Afghanistan or, why not, Japanese Super-Minister Edano for his important contributions to the peace of mind of Japanese victims of Fukushima nuclear accident by denying all facts.

arclight said...

does that mean tony blairs recent bid for the kazahkstan (think Semey polygon and eugenics :( ) dictator is off?

i would like to have seen the shortlist for the prize! lol!

and thank you admin for annoying the wall street pust (no typo)

well done!

follow the link to for a japanese uk link to the soma high school video

Anonymous said...

Nobel Peace Prize has been a joke for a long time.

Awards in general are a joke. Every personal experience I've had with education was filled with sexist racists lavishing attention and awards upon their favorite people, regardless of their talent or skill, whilst ignoring everyone who could have made a significant contribution and improvement to society.

Anonymous said...

The Nobel prize was a feeble attempt by Alfred Nobel to assuage his guilt over an invention he claimed would make war too terrible to contemplate. This prize now allows the world to assuage their guilt over a myriad of issues without actually addressing them.

Mohamed ElBaradei of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) won the Peace prize in 2005?!?

"The Nobel Peace Prize 2005 was awarded jointly to International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Mohamed ElBaradei "for their efforts to prevent nuclear energy from being used for military purposes and to ensure that nuclear energy for peaceful purposes is used in the safest possible way"

WFT! IAEA safeguards didn't stop Pakistan, India, North Korea, Israel or Iran from doing as they pleased yet they get accolades for doing a "heck of a job".

Anonymous said...

What is so funny?
EU is huge success despite the crisis.
And why you use a German domain?
Who are you? What are you?
Neo-Liberal Anti Nuke Freak?

Anonymous said...

Anon above, how much are you paid to post crap like that? 50 cents? 50 yen?

Anonymous said...

Yeah the EU is "such a huge success that the Euro is poised to collapse into the dust bin of history. I'm sure there are plenty of people in Greece, Ireland and Spain that would beat Anon 12:51 into a pile of goo over his deeply flawed opinion.

"Banks, companies and investors are preparing themselves for a collapse of the euro. Cross-border bank lending is falling, asset managers are shunning Europe and money is flowing into German real estate and bonds. The euro remains stable against the dollar because America has debt problems too. But unlike the euro, the dollar's structure isn't in doubt".

"Economics: the failure of European monetary union has been abject".


When he was leader of the Conservative party, William Hague once likened membership of the euro to being trapped in a burning building with no fire exit. It was an apt description, as young people in Greece would testify: in a country that has already contracted by more than Germany did during the Great Depression, the jobless rate for Greeks under 25 is 55%."

Success? you mean more like SUCKFEST, right?

Maju said...

Regardless on whether the EU is a success or not, an entity, a quasi-state that is dooming its citizens (we do have EU citizenship, mind you, giving some rights) to death under a bridge is a failed quasi-state and/or a criminal entity.

I'm for the latter: the EU is a criminal entity under the control of the global banksters dedicated in these days to destroy the lives of its worker-citizens in the short-term benefit of an already ultra-wealthy financial oligarchy.

You should not give a prestigious Peace Prize to a criminal entity dedicated to rob the poor to give to the rich. You should not give a prestigious Peace Prize to the infamous Sheriff of Nottingham.

If you do, you are obviously corrupt, at deep fault, something we already saw with Obama's wholly undeserved prize. Or the one given to Johnson-Shirleaf (another neo-liberal lackey of banksters). In general the Nobel Peace Prize is being more and more given to those in power, often without any merit and lots of demerits.

That's why I propose Edano... just another cruel joke.

Maju said...

Also, as some have mentioned EU's "success", I can't but recommend this hilarious and informative short video titled "Great Latvia Success Story":

Success! :D

Anonymous said...

"the EU is a criminal entity under the control of the global banksters dedicated in these days to destroy the lives of its worker-citizens in the short-term benefit of an already ultra-wealthy financial oligarchy." Maju said.

Why you post this on a maybe Neo-liberal site.
(check his post about us economy)
Just like I have asked, Ex-Skf is apparently against Nuke, but pro Neo-liberal/Neocon ideas.
Pretty crass contradiction. But strange things happen.
In the End it doen't matter if you are from the far left (but never were a worker!) or are a Neocon, only the Neocon is making money from other people and the Leftie has to beg for my 50 cent to go in his tinfoil hat.

Maju said...

I basically follow this blog for the information on Fukushima catastrophe, which is very good.

I agree that he sounds neoliberal but he allows free speech so it's ok. It's like Falafel... I mean Faragel, I would never vote for him and his proposed policies seem nefarious and dogmatic but now and then out of merely just being critical he manages to say something that makes sense.

Anonymous said...

I'm against all labelling. I don't follow anyone or any of their personal ideals. I don't lean towards any side. The specifics are what's important.

One should always be prepared to take the best path available, and not constrain themselves to social groups.

Anonymous said...

...continuation from above.

Figureheads like Obama and Romney are the worst. They claim they're for and against this or that, but they constantly flip sides when nobody's looking.

It's their job to say things that push the right buttons in your head and heart. They're obviously not there to champion for any ideals.

Australia's current PM is a good example. The woman backstabbed her "friend" the previous PM, constantly lies, supposedly hates men and children, and is now using the "misogyny" card to defend against any criticism.

I don't know a single person that doesn't hate her, but the misogyny card ignited world-wide support for her, cheering her on as a champion for women and feminism. They forget that she's also strong supporter of a guy at the heart of a scandal involving mistreatment of women.

She's not in it for women. She's in it for herself. They all are. And they'll use whatever excuse they can that gets all those forgetful small-minded people to support them.

Anonymous said...

I am no admirer of the EU or its institutions, but when I hear of Nick Farage and EUKIP, and their like, I can't help thinking of the film "The Ruling Class" and the character Jack Gurney, 14th Earl of Gurney, played by Peter O'Toole:

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing.

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