Obama has just been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. He was nominated for the prize less than two weeks after taking the office of the Presidency (when the deadline for nominations ended) and been in office for not yet 10 months and hasn’t yet had time to accomplish anything at all along the lines of what previous Nobel winners have done. Indeed, the committee that awarded him the Nobel said that it is not for what he has accomplished basically, but for what they hope he will accomplish. The news of his win dropped jaws around the world, not simply among his political opponents but also among his strongest supporters, including those who worked on his campaign. For instance, over at the Huffington Post Jesse Berney weighs in with a post titled “He Should Have Turned It Down,” and screenwriter (and a guy who worked on Obama’s campaign) Michael Russnow writes a post titled “Barack Obama, Nobel Peace Laureate: Whatever Happened to Awarding for Deeds Actually Done?” among many others adding their shock.

The Huffpo folks aren’t the only ones expressing shock and scepticism. The Los Angeles Times writes “Excessive praise can be unwelcome and embarrassing., We endorsed him for the job, and we greatly prefer him to his predecessor. But it’s difficult to see why he deserves the peace prize so soon after taking office. The Nobel committee didn’t just embarrass Obama, it diminished the credibility of the prize itself.” [emphasis mine]. The Washington Post (also endorsed his candidacy) adds their two cents: “It’s an odd Nobel Peace Prize that almost makes you embarrassed for the honoree.”

Almost? No, it does make you feel embarrassed for the honoree. This has put Obama, through no fault of his own, in a terribly embarrassing position.

Yesterday, one of the most-searched phrases in google was “Obama Nobel Prize is this a joke?” and today if you put the keywords Obama and Nobel in, one of the top search suggestions includes “for what.”

And it hasn’t done him any favours at all. Quite the opposite and for a number of reasons. First, people tend to feel a bit of resentment toward someone who gets something they haven’t earned, right? And this has put a bad taste in the mouth of many who support and like Obama and, despite this not being Obama’s fault, that bad taste is likely to remain associated with him (we certainly know this from a psychological perspective). Second, this is totally setting Obama up for criticism in the future: not only if he doesn’t live up to–earn– the award (and perceptions of what is required to earn that reward is a pretty tall order), but anytime he does anything that could potentially be seen, even by small groups of opponents, as running counter to what a “peace prize winner” should be doing, we’ll be seeing sarcastic reflections on “Mr. Nobel Winner” and that is certainly bound to seep into the public consciousness over time. I mean, look, it has already started among his supporters: famed filmmaker Michael Moore posts “Congratulations .. Now Please Earn It” and goes on to say “The irony that you have been awarded this prize on the 2nd day of the ninth year of what is quickly becoming your War in Afghanistan is not lost on anyone .. You have to end our involvement in Afghanistan now. If you don’t, you’ll have no choice but to return the prize to Oslo.”

It is really like the Nobel committee has set him up for failure, ridicule, and pity. They did him no favour at all.