M.I.A. Slams Obama, Fails History

So our favorite Sri Lankan rude girl tweeted her surprise about Obama getting the Nobel Peace Prize:

MIA Obama Lennon.jpg

“Obama winning the nobel peace PRIZE? he should give it back like john Lennon sent back his MBE” — @_M_I_A

GROAN. Really, Maya? The sitting U.S. president should give back a Swedish (decided by Norwegians) prize because it’s like a British citizen receiving a British honor… how, exactly? And the Nobel carries the taint of its dynamite origins, sure, but is that the same as the bloody history of the British Empire?

And speaking of history!! Lennon DIDN’T give it back until FOUR YEARS AFTER he accepted it:

John Lennon, along with the other Beatles were made MBE’s in 1965, to much criticism. Lennon justified the comparative merits of his investure by comparing military membership in the order, saying “Lots of people who complained about us receiving the MBE received theirs for heroism in the war – for killing people”. He continued: “We received ours for entertaining other people. I’d say we deserve ours more.” [Source]

Lennon sent back his MBE insignia in 1969, which Queen Elizabeth had bestowed upon him in 1965. He wrote: “Your Majesty, I am returning this in protest against Britain’s involvement in the Nigeria-Biafra thing, against our support of America in Vietnam, and against “Cold Turkey” slipping down the charts. With love. John Lennon of Bag.” [Source]

So let’s see…Lennon happily accepted it in 1965 saying “we deserve ours” more than people in combat, then returned it in 1969 for a list of ludicrous reasons that included the failure of his song with the Plastic Ono Band.

For Obama to refuse the medal exactly like Lennon, he should hold onto it for four years then give it back because he just lost the 2012 election or something. Or wait, even that would be more meaningful.

Lennon’s a genius, wrote great songs, the world lost a poet, (etc., etc.)…and I really do love M.I.A’s songs. All of them. But sometimes, just sometimes, you just can’t help wishing that musicians would shut the hell up about politics because they start sounding like these guys. And that’s just too soul-crushing to contemplate.

Cross-posted](http://blog.mtviggy.com/2009/10/09/m-i-a-slams-obama-fails-history/) to the Iggy Blog.

111 thoughts on “M.I.A. Slams Obama, Fails History

  1. i think the point was to encourage him to end the war, the nobel committee is obviously making a political move. is it fair that the man who ended a war didn’t receive it? no. but if it lights a fire under obama’s toosh to actually DO what he SAYS then its worth it… i suppose they’re hedging their bets that he’ll end up doing the right thing.

  2. He did bring a great problem solving constructive approach to the US economy that also saved the global economy which is in turn lifting millions from poverty. The Nobel Peace Committe does not have an exactly stellar record in the past for unbiased elections because they rejected Mahatma Gandhi’s election 5 times(inspiration for Dr. Mandela and Dr. king) who even Einstein described as : ” A man the world will find hard to believe walked the surface of the earth with us.”

  3. I always hated MIA and her overhyped so called music. She sucks I’m not suprised she would say something like this.

  4. MIA should have rejected her Grammy and Oscar nominations for making people ears bleed with her lame music.

  5. i really dont get the logic behind this. are liberals not allowed to attack obama when they feel he is doing something wrong?

    Sure. Voice your dissenting opinions. That is different. Obama always said Afghanistan is not a war of choice and he would focus more there as we wind down Iraq. Even the Nobel Committee was aware of that, and still thought he deserves the NPP. The point is most lay people will just use this award to bash him without really getting why the Nobel Committee gave him the award.

    “…”We simply disagree that he has done nothing,” committee chairman Thorbjoern Jagland told the AP on Tuesday. “He got the prize for what he has done.”

    Jagland singled out Obama’s efforts to heal the divide between the West and the Muslim world and scale down a Bush-era proposal for an anti-missile shield in Europe.

    “All these things have contributed to – I wouldn’t say a safer world – but a world with less tension,” Jagland said by phone from the French city of Strasbourg, where he was attending meetings in his other role as secretary-general of the Council of Europe.

    He said most world leaders were positive about the award and that most of the criticism was coming from the media and from Obama’s political rivals.

    “I take note of it. My response is only the judgment of the committee, which was unanimous,” he said, adding that the award to Obama followed the guidelines set forth by Alfred Nobel, the Swedish industrialist and inventor of dynamite, who established the Nobel Prizes in his 1895 will.

    “Alfred Nobel wrote that the prize should go to the person who has contributed most to the development of peace in the previous year,” Jagland said. “Who has done more for that than Barack Obama?”

    Aagot Valle, a Norwegian politician who joined the Nobel panel this year, also dismissed suggestions that the decision to award Obama was without merit.

    “Don’t you think that comments like that patronize Obama? Where do these people come from?” Valle said by phone from the western coastal city of Bergen. “Well, of course, all arguments have to be considered seriously. I’m not afraid of a debate on the peace prize decision. That’s fine.”

    In Friday’s announcement, the committee said giving Obama the peace prize could be seen as an early vote of confidence intended to build global support for the policies of his young administration. …” from the Washington Post “Nobel Jury Defends Obama Peace Prize Decision”

  6. I agree with a previous poster that said Obama can’t do anything right. Obama did not ASK for the Nobel prize the committee gave him the award. Of course Obama should keep the award. I don’t think people see the bigger picture. Unlike Bush Obama is attempting to reach out to many parts of the world that are former enemies of the United States. Also, how do people EXPECT Obama to change foreign policy in 10 months? Give me a break!

  7. Obama is not Jesus Christ I think people expect too much from Obama he is a politician he cannot change the world. I do feel Obama can do MORE obviously and I sincerely hope he does. I think people are a bit frustrated and impatient with Obama. Now if Obama had been president for two or three years and he had done NOTHING then perhaps MIA comments would have some veracity. However, the guy has only been in office for 10 months. I feel Obama needs a little bit more time. I think next year is the real test for Obama.

  8. Also, how do people EXPECT Obama to change foreign policy in 10 months? Give me a break!

    I don’t know – maybe by not escalating the war in Afghanstian and now Pakistan? Or at least not mentioning soldiers int he acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace Prize.

    There are many ways. I’ll give the administration credit for at least making a nod towards delaying an IMF loan to the government of Sri Lanka, but even that didn’t seem to be a very high priority – but I don’t know how firmly entrenched the opposition of the governments of China and Russia were in the Security Council but I would be curious to know what kind of political capital it would have taken to get that delay until a plausible and humane solution was found in Sri Lanka. and of course you could argue that they didn’t have to go through the UN since they don’t for a lot of other stuff.

  9. oh, holy crap. I know it’s fashionable and just all the rage to pooh-pooh Obama’s Nobel, but seriously, I expected more from this crowd than the usual parroting of the “conventional wisdom.”

    Here’s the why of it, since some of you really do seem to have trouble getting it.

    1. Bush was a moron who did real damage to “world peace” as a goal, and to our country’s reputation abroad (and fuck the Republicans who seem to think that foreign opinion is irrelevant. The reasons are obvious for why international support for our nation’s policies are important. If you can’t think of any, you’re stupid.

    2. Obama could literally do nothing but talk, and people feel better about him (in Oslo, and presumably in most other countries that have even a remotely favorable opinion of the US).

    3. People in this and other countries have high hopes for him and his presidency. To the naysayers, please…shut the hell up. As my very southern godmother used to say, either help or get out of the kitchen. You’re not accomplishing anything much except look like an idiot when you keep forcing questions about the president’s legitimacy as a leader (yeah, I’m talking to you, birthers, tea-baggers (ha! only a true fucktard willingly wears THAT appellation), and healthcare reform obstructionists.

    One last thing, which makes me practically quiver with rage. All these pukes saying stuff like “why does Obama deserve an award that went to Gandhi and Mother Theresa” are totally missing a pretty huge point. That point is that all those people who’ve won the Nobel Peace Prize espouse liberal values: tolerance, multiculturalism, the greatest good for the greatest number, financial opportunities for the lower social rungs, civil rights for all, a deep belief in fair play and level playing fields, environmental justice and awareness…what many of us nowadays call “progressive” values.

    I mean, what exactly are these mealy-mouthed hypocrites really saying? That they actually love Al Gore, the IPCC, Anwar Sadat, Menachem Begin, George C. Marshall and the United Nations? That Obama does not belong in such heady company? Suddenly it’s all praise for this rabble of foreigners and wimps who espouse peace and doing good for the common man?

    It makes me want to say mean things and ruin my chances at winning it myself one day.

  10. Finally, as per the post itself: MIA got it wrong, but she’s just a talent. We tend to expect too much from the people who dance on our stages, even if they’re all “daughter-of-a-rebel” authenticated. She’s smart, but she’s only human.

    Kudos for setting the record straight. If she’s a good person and the criticism actually reaches her ears, then I hope she’ll have the good grace to acknowledge it.

  11. Salil,

    you’re saying that the peace prize itself ISN’T a joke? That Kissinger, Carter and Gore really exemplify the ‘progressive’ values you identified? When did a) knowingly perpetuate war, b) fail to accomplish anything your big mouth set in motion, c) pushing climatologists off center stage and into the exits qualify as expressions of those values? The “not bush” argument for giving Obama the nobel is more succinctly stated than in your rant: “he is not bush.” It’s not a great argument but it’s still made in regards to a meaningless trophy–not an issue but certainly an annoyance.

  12. All these pukes saying stuff like “why does Obama deserve an award that went to Gandhi

    gandhi wasn’t deemed worthy of the peace prize.

  13. In my mind Obama deserves Nobel Peace Prize just for becoming US President. I don’t see it as a small accomplishment to be the first black president in US. It is a human rights achievement to rise awareness of their potential to racial minorities in US. Some Nobel laureates don’t even have that…

    I found Gore winning the prize as more absurd.

  14. Wow, Salil, way to defend homey. How about you reflect on your own condescension towards MIA based on an effin’ tweet? “Those who dance on our stages”, huh? As opposed to erudite, articulate and thoughtful polyglots who miss the point altogether because, hey, let’s take the ‘talent’ to task for supposedly reckless comments while the great hope continues the policies of that moron he is supposed to have saved the world from. Get perspective!