In The New York Post, Reason Editor in Chief Matt Welch argues that "Giving Americans trophies is a funny way of punishing us for being self-centered." Excerpt:
As Obama said yesterday morning, his administration seeks "a new era of engagement, in which all nations must take responsibility for the world we seek."
Yet "taking responsibility" ultimately means guaranteeing their own security and fighting their own wars—and fixing their attention on world problems, instead of on the nation that disproportionately tries to address them. The first step down that long road lies not with America, but with the countries who love to love/hate us.
Surely, it will be a sign of responsibility and self-respect when the citadels of European respectability choose to lavish awards on those citizens of the world who actually accomplish great things—rather than on the American they think might do good someday. Sadly, judging from yesterday's news, that day is still far, far away.