Wednesday, October 12, 2011

925 Nobel Prizes

925 Nobel Prizes

There should be a Nobel Prize for stating the obvious because that’s what many of the winners do.  This year’s economics award goes to two guys who figured out that economic policy and government spending have something (not sure what) to do with economic results.


Spend more than you have and you get into debt which sometimes you can’t pay back.  Spend less than you have and you can save some money.

Who knew?

At some future date, the Nobel Prize in Physics will go to someone for discovering that “When you drop something it goes down, not up.”    The Peace Prize will go to someone from a country you never heard of where war between two factions has raged for 600 years and the discovery will be “if you stop shooting, you can at least talk about your differences and maybe even agree on some compromises.”

Of course, in recent years, the peace prize has gone to some people who either started wars or egged them on or did nothing or had no hand in either their start or their end.  Barack Obama (2009), Jimmy Carter (2002), Yassir Arafat (1994), Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho (1973).  In 11 of the last 110 years, the committee didn’t award any peace prize at all, a choice that should have been increased by at least four, if not more.

Alfred Nobel was an arms maker and the inventor of dynamite.  No Peace Prize winner, he.  But like the Rockefellers, the Fords, and Andrew Carnegie, guilt closes in, sometimes after the fact.  Hence, a lot of nouveau millionaires with medals.

The literature prize?  Often a prize for making the clear obscure.  You ever read any of these winners?  Some, you have to (Faulkner, Steinbeck, Camus, Sartre, Toni Morrison.)  Half the time you go away saying “huh?”

To its credit, the Nobel Foundation has added only the economics prize to the original list in Nobel’s will.  These days, it’s surprising they give no medals to “Best Rap Video,” “Coolest Electronic Gadget,” “Most Corrupt Politician,” “Knuckle-draggingest College Football Team” or “Dumbest Starlet.”

But the Prize of Prizes still should be for Stating the Obvious.


--Amber Miller, 27, of Westchester, Illinois, ran the Chicago marathon and immediately afterward gave birth to a baby girl, described by her doctor as “healthy.”  She said she ran the race at 39 weeks pregnant because “I’m crazy about running.”  Only the first two words of that quote count.

--You need this but don’t know it.  Exam gloves for typing on a computer.  Else, there’s no way to keep the keyboard clean and smudge free.  Keyboards are made of the same stuff as eyeglasses, which also are impossible to keep clean and smudge free.

--In St. Mary’s Georgia, Camden County is thinking about using prison labor to fight fires.  They want to put several cons in each firehouse, supposedly saving about half a million dollars a year.  Some places just can’t get rid of that slave mentality.

I’m Wes Richards.  My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2011

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