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Honoraria: The world seems stunned that President Obama was chosen as this year's recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. But given the worldview of the selection committee, this really should come as no surprise at all.
A rundown of recent winners indicates a trend. In 1990, Communist Mikhail Gorbachev was given the prize though Ronald Reagan had far more to do with the liberation of Eastern Europe and the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Two years later, the honor went to Rigoberta Menchu, a Guatemalan author whose writings turned out to be a fraud. That didn't faze the committee, however. What mattered was she was a leftist.
In 1994, Yasser Arafat, darling of global leftists, took the prize, though his idea of peace was Israel prostrate before radical Islam.
Jimmy Carter, who failed his country as president, won in 2002.
How a man who spent his career as a toady to tyrants won a "peace" prize befuddled us. It only made sense later when Gunnar Berge, the Norwegian committee chairman, admitted the choice of the left-leaning Carter was meant to tweak President Bush.
In 2004, Wangari Maathai, a Kenyan tree-planter, beat out Pope John Paul II, who was nominated for his lifelong opposition to communism. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair were nominated that year as well.
In 2005, the prize went to U.N. head weapons inspector Mohamed ElBaradei. London Times editor Bronwen Maddox called it "a slap in the face for the United States," noting ElBaradei's International Atomic Energy Agency had "failed to detect covert nuclear programs in at least three countries and failed to get diplomatic purchase on the problems when others have finally brought them to light. That does not amount to a contribution to world peace."
Al Gore didn't invent the Nobel Peace Prize, but he did share it in 2007 with the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Neither has done anything to further peace. But both are accomplished at scaring a lot of people with their man-made global warming scam, a swindle that the political left is heavily invested in.
Rather than insult the U.S., the Nobel selection panel this time chose to manipulate American politics with its choice. In picking the U.S. president, it has made a preemptive strike on the 2012 presidential election. After all, how could American voters toss a Nobel Laureate from the White House after only one term?
We think the preening, leftist Nobel panel did a disservice to our president by giving him an award he knows he didn't deserve. But this isn't the first time they've gone off the rails. It's a sad thing to see a once-proud peace prize sullied by petty left-wing politics.