Nomological Net

Stray thoughts from here and there. The occasional concern for construct validity. No more logic. Fish.


faults in the clouds of delusion

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Peace we can believe in?

It's hilarious how the whole Barack Obama - Nobel peace prize thing has gotten knickers in twists from one end of the political washing-line to the other. The Taliban and Rush Limbaugh join forces with career bleeding-hearts to decry the decision. Strange bedfellows!

I personally think it's not that bad an idea. Sure, there may have been others who may have deserved the award relatively more than Obama. But was Obama above the bar in absolute terms? I think he was. Just the fact that he stemmed the Bush Doctrine, I think is a pretty huge achievement. Rachel Maddow, as usual, gets it exactly right:

Critics are saying he hasn't done anything yet. I believe that pulling the world's most powerful and dangerous nation from the ruinous path it had set itself on is plenty achievement enough. People are pointing to everything he hasn't done yet. He wasn't given the prize for those. They are also conflating the timing of the prize (too early in his tenure) with his deeds (or lack thereof). Watch the Maddow clip for the counter to that one.

The joke circulating about giving him the economics prize in the hope that the economy improves is plenty funny (I personally think he deserves one for his amazing chemistry); it would have been funnier if the idea of a Nobel prize for economics wasn't laughable in itself.

But my favorite one is that Obama shouldn't get the prize because Gandhi never did.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Product life cycle

I used to be an intensive user of MSN Messenger, some five-odd years ago. This morning I just signed on to see what was happening. Of my 49 contacts, exactly zero were online. A long column of red icons.

Nowadays I too hardly ever log on there -- there's just this one contact who insists on communicating via Messenger only (apart from email, that is). So I talk to her much less too, these days.

Wonder what happened, and why.