Wednesday, May 09, 2007

John Bolton - example of the failure of Cheney foreign policy

I finished running the early voting location yesterday, came home and crawled into bed. It wasn't hard, but it was really, really looooonnnnngggg. Plus, I was sitting at a computer finding names of registered voters all day and NOT surfing the Internet! Frustrating! The world was passing my by, and I just had to sit there and let it roll. But now I'm back to my digital reality for a couple of days. And the first thing I have found was the latest on John Bolton, failed UN Ambassador from Dick Cheney. Steve Clemons at his "Washington Note" has several things to say about Bolton.

There are two posts, both from May, 4. The first reports Bolton's comments as he received the Bradley Prize. In his acceptance speech Bolton does a great deal more to demonstrate that he is himself a rather nasty piece of work than he does to provide any significant information that is of use to policy makers or the public for such policy. Here is Steve Clemons' short summary:
"...a brief rant on the importance of fighting liberal government bureaucracies as a conservative political appointee. In other words, be a headache for your liberal colleagues and, in Bolton's particular case, push back against the instructions of your quasi-internationalist Secretary of State.

And why should one do that? In essence, according to John Bolton, because some higher-level political appointees have "gone native," adopted the culture of their bureaucracies, and are ignoring their legitimate democratic mandate to govern conservatively.

My favorite part of the speech, though? It had to be his grouping Sens. Lincoln Chafee and Chris Dodd together with Iran, North Korea, Cuba, and Syria:

"There are, of course, many other people I should mention. For example, I should note Senators Lincoln Chafee and Chris Dodd, who did so much to help make me eligible for this Prize. Prominent citizens of Pyongyang, Havana, Damascus, Tehran and elsewhere also pitched in, simply by being themselves."
In short, Bolton can't work with anyone else, doesn't want to work with anyone else, and he is proud of his utter failure at being a social person and effective diplomat. A better example of the uselessness and failure of 'conservative' foreign policy (as well as of Bolton himself) would be hard to find.

Steve's second post, in which he considers the significance of Bolton's acceptance speech, points out that John Bolton's departure from the U.S. Department of State has been immediately followed by a series of small but significant successes for the Department of State. Here is an example of the improved tone of U.S. activity in the UN now that John Bolton has been replaced by someone who cares.

I had always thought that a positive measure of a person's contribution to the work of an organization was demonstrated when the organization becomes less effective or even fails after that person leaves it. Bolton has demonstrated that his departure has resulted in a much improved State Department. John Bolton's "contributions" to U.S. foreign policy can't get much clearer.

Bolton's comments upon acceptance of the Bradley Prize demonstrate that this connection is lost on him. He is much too busy telling others about his innate belief of his superiority over non-Conservatives and other lesser people. Someone like Bolton who has to brag about how correct his unique vision is usually brags to conceal a strong sense of personal inferiority. I can't even say that I feel any sorrow about his sad emotional state. I'm just glad he's gone from official policy-making and destruction.

Now that John Bolton is no longer able to mess up American foreign policy with his incompetence, personal nastiness and sick destructive "conservatism" perhaps we could soon be similarly fortunate with Bolton's mentor, Dick Cheney ....

[Revised and extended 4:53 PM CDT.]

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