John Ransom

It was just gag gift. A joke.

That Nobel Peace prize that the Norwegians, on behalf of the Swedes gave Barack Obama.

I always found it ironic that the guy who was a major weapons manufacturer and inventor of dynamite would put up a prize for peace to begin with. But at least he tried to make amends for being known as a merchant of death.

Not so with Barack Obama.

As wars break out all over the world, our weakest man is stuck saying what he always says: “Who? Me?”

This is the same man who so quickly returned the Churchill bust standing in the Oval Office to the British Embassy that it offended some Englishman and some Americans.

Obama could have learned something from Churchill’s life. Or Nobel’s.

Churchill, half-American, most decidedly was a man of war and an imperialist, yet he knew more about making peace before he was 40 years old than Barack Obama will ever know.

Churchill fought Pashtuns in Afghanistan, dervishes in Omdurman and Boers in Pretoria. Yet he made peace with South Africa and with the “terrorists” in the IRA—at least most of them— to create the Republic of Ireland. He also negotiated peaceful relations with a communist Russia, a country that he called a blood stained bear.

He negotiated with striking transport workers and coal miners and was always willing to sacrifice everything short of honor for peace and goodwill.

That’s because Churchill was a strong man, comfortable in his strength.

And people who negotiate from their strongest positions are always in the best position to ensure peace.

And that stands in stark contrast to our weakest president, Barack Obama.

For all of Obama electoral success—the only resume item worth bragging about-- one might remember that U.S. Grant also was rewarded with two terms as president.

Grant, like Churchill, was a man of war, but not a strong man outside of the battlefield. The presidency for him was a gift from a grateful nation that wanted to believe that war meant something besides killing.

Obama could learn something from Grant’s life too.

John Ransom

John Ransom’s writings on politics and finance have appeared in the Los Angeles Business Journal, the Colorado Statesman, Pajamas Media and Registered Rep Magazine amongst others. Until 9/11, Ransom worked primarily in finance as an investment executive for NYSE member firm Raymond James and Associates, JW Charles and as a new business development executive at Mutual Service Corporation. He lives in San Diego. You can follow him on twitter @bamransom.

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