The world renowned and respected Nobel Foundation has announced sweeping changes to the granting of its annual awards, in a move which has been prompted by the continuing financial turmoil which is engulfing Europe.
The awards are the legacy of Alfred Nobel, who graciously gave the world nitroglycerin and dynamite, amongst other highly explosive substances. He died as a result a minor explosion at his home in San Remo in Italy in 1896.
Nobel died a very wealthy man and left much of his estate for the establishment of the Nobel Prize. The prizes have been awarded every year since 1901.
A spokesman for the Nobel Foundation said, "Alfred Nobel was a brilliant scientist, but was not such a shrewd investor. In fact, shortly before he died, he invested much of his wealth in Spanish and Greek timeshare developments. He also foresaw the birth of the Euro and left clear instructions that his wealth be invested in the new currency once it was established. Needless to say, in the last few years, the Nobel investment portfolio has taken a bit of a hammering."
In recent years, Nobel Prize winners have received a monetary gift of approxiamtely $1.4 million. It is understood that this situation has now become unsustainable.
The spokesman went on to say, "Rather than a lump sum of money, Nobel Prize recipients will now recieve a token gift, or should I say a gift token. In fact, they will receive a $30 Amazon gift token. The other part of their prize will be a fully paid overseas trip, which will have some sort of special meaning for them. For example, Julian Assange, who will receive the Nobel Prize for Literature, will be awarded a two week guided tour of the US west coast. President Assad of Syria, who is nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, has indicated he will accept a two week stay at a kibbutz in Israel. Pablo Escobar, who will be given a posthumous Nobel Prize for Chemistry, will be disinterred and given pride of place at a still life exhibition at the DEA headquarters in Quantico, Virginia."
Meanwhile, it has been reported that Henry Kissinger is willing to hand back his prize, in exchange for a 6 month trip around Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.