Saturday, October 10, 2009

Of prizes, mental health, cosmic rays, big and small change, blah, blah, blah

"It's an embarrassment and even an impediment to peace. President Obama, in letting the committee award it to him, has made himself look vain, a fool and dangerously lost in his own mystique." (Bronwen Maddox in The Times of London)

The Ghost of Christmas Past

As the story goes, Swedish chemist Alfred Bernhard Nobel had the fortune of a visit from the future when, upon the death of his brother, a newspaper mistakenly reported the death as his own. Alfred was saddened to read the legacy by which he would most be remembered was that as inventor of dynamite.

At that stage in life, Alfred Nobel claimed title to 350 patents and controlled factories and labs in 20 countries such that, were he still alive today at age 176, some think he might have challenged the United States' claim for world's biggest empire.

One can only speculate how different things might be had Nobel worked to do good instead of the more prevalent malevolence of super power nations always grappling to be "top dog" through wars, exploitation of the impoverished and the spread of misery globally. But nations, being but a sum of their parts, are only human, doing what they do best -- manifesting human nature upon a world we so presently enjoy. But I digress.

So, Nobel, wanting to change how he would be remembered, established a foundation with the financial backing of his accumulated wealth to present awards annually for the top achievements in arts and sciences. Oh, and one other category that falls in neither of those other two. An elusive ideal called peace with a suspected half-life shorter than that of Cobalt-60 apparently. (No one knows for sure, existing as it has for such short periods in history.)

Current "lunacy" the sun's fault (or other 'loony' theories)?

There are any number of thoughts on conditions, events or other cosmic influences outside the realm of our little human friendly space neighborhood that may affect mankind beyond its ability to even recognize, much less do anything about. These may range from Earth's solar system crossing of the galactic ecliptic, the galactic "equator," to violet rays from outer space bombarding humankind. I suppose these are possible if not verifiable. But one thing we know...

Cosmic rays reaching inside our solar system are "at record levels for the Space Age." The reason? Our sun's solar activity is in a "deep lull." And with so little solar activity, its shield protecting us from cosmic rays shrinks.

I have no idea if the increased cosmic rays passing inperceptably through our brains may be responsible for the current world we inhabit where normal things appear crazy and/or crazier-than-bat-shit things are accepted as normal as we have seen in recent months.

The effect of gamma rays on man-in-the-moon marigolds

So Friday, October 9th -- the day Earth first bombed another heavenly body, the moon, (with ordinance - dynamite perhaps?! - sent by who else but the U.S., of course) -- marked the day of international reverberations felt around the world from the seeming lunacy-dropping announcement of this year's Nobel bomb for recipient of its annual Peace Prize, Barrack Obama.

Without the credentials of fellow Nobel Peace laureates he now joins such as Albert Schweitzer, Desmond Tutu, Martin Luther King, the 14th Dalai Lama, Jimmy Carter, and Mother Teresa, Obama appears to have his work cut out for him.

Pushing a rope uphill

As an online article today suggests, "While the Nobel Peace Prize may provide a boost to president Obama's agenda, some analysts say it is more of a burden." Dada wonders if that might not be because the glaring contradictions between what Obama says and what Obama really does have now been gutted and laid open for all the world to compare?

Meanwhile, Thorbjorn Jagland, member of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, struggled to answer questions of dumbfounded reporters as to this strange choice of a man whose actions run contra to the very ideals the Peace Prize represents. Might it be the committee, in its selection, is goading Obama to live up to his pre-nomination promises?

If I had a million dollars...

Dada would like to suggest how Obama might use the nearly one million dollars that accompany this prize: Why not place that money in an escrow account as recompense to survivors of the innocent victims Obama's actions kill in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan until we get the hell out of there? Of course, at the rate we are going, that will be years and compensations from Obama's trust fund to victim's survivors will be in pennies.

Meanwhile, Dada wonders if five time Nobel Peace Prize nominee, Mahatma Gandhi, who was assassinated two days before his likely sixth peace prize nomination -- a prize he never won -- might not be turning over in his grave about now? Oh no, thankfully not. I forgot, Gandhi was cremated.

1 comment:

Fran said...

Mr. Ramblings Dad used the word "flabbergasted", when I asked him what he thought of the Peace Prize being awarded to Obama.
Others described it as the
"WTF event of the year".

I mean here he was on the very same week, announcing the need to send 40,000 more troops into Afghanistan, whereas Biden favored drones, & getting out & he gets a highly esteemed Peace prize??? Waaa????

I'm sorry, but the ongoing wars are nothing short of the continuation of the Bush regime.
Even worse the economy is tanking, and we are still keeping military spending as the largest line item in the budget.

As another Nobel Peace Prize winner, MLK jr, put it:

"A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom. Have we not come to such an impasse in the modern world that we must love our enemies - or else? The chain reaction of evil - hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars - must be broken, or else we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation. I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality... I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word. I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear."

So just for a little reality check- 40 years later

What is THE largest line item in the US budget?

Military spending

What are we currently fighting for?

Single payer health care

So while we are having this major health care debate, and lamenting how could we possibly pay for it.... all the money is going to not one- but two wars- and has even spilled over into the Pakistan border. Two wars in three countries.

Dr. King's words ring true...