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Bye-bye, Bolton

Well, it's official. It took some serious partisan gaming and brinkmanship, but the Democrats in the Senate have succeeded in derailing John Bolton's career at the United Nations.

I never "got" the fierce opposition to Bolton from the left. An ambassador is supposed to represent his nation's interests and government's views to the nation or body he is sent to. Bolton was a staunch defender of both, and actually was getting results in reforming that festering cesspool that is the United Nations.

His critics seemed to focus on his undiplomatic attributes. I guess that means he wasn't "nice" enough. Well, "nice" and "polite" and "obliging" is pretty much useless when dealing with a body like the UN, especially when the ambassador represents the nation that kicks in over 20% of the entire UN's corruption-saturated budget.

I didn't follow Bolton too closely, but whenever he came to my attention, I found myself agreeing with him and glad he was so rigorously pushing our positions.

The Democrats never stopped sniping at him, though. They blocked him from ever getting a straight up-or-down vote in the full Senate, and sabotaged Bush's recess appointment by threatening to de-fund his office (effectively cutting off his salary). And with the Democrats about to take control of the Senate, the chances of him ever getting confirmed were pretty much dead.

So I wonder who the Democrats think that Bush ought to send to the United Nations? Who can be properly sycophantic and apologetic and simpering enough to pass Senate muster?

Well, now that Saddam's trial is over, I hear Ramsey Clark has some free time...


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Comments (44)

They opposed it in the bigg... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

They opposed it in the bigging to just oppose it. They're not stuck on that path.

What is most important here is how Bush responds.

beginning*... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

beginning*

"..Democrats in the Senate ... (Below threshold)
BarneyG2000:

"..Democrats in the Senate have succeeded in derailing John Bolton's career at the United Nations."

Hey Jay, can you tell us the date Lincoln Chafee switched parties?

Maybe Bush can nominate Harriet Myers?

Bush should appoint Rumsfel... (Below threshold)
La Mano:

Bush should appoint Rumsfeld.

Bush should just leave the ... (Below threshold)
superdestroyer:

Bush should just leave the position open and let some career diplomat serve as the "acting" ambassador. They would set a signal to the libertarians that the UN is not very important and would keep the Democrats from having a field day during confirmation hearings.

Bolton was the darling of t... (Below threshold)
Lee:

Bolton was the darling of the right because of his disdain and contempt for the whole process. Conservatives loved his ability to get nothing done, because that adds fodder to their argument that the UN is ineffective and a waste of time.

Sorry, but if we're going to be members of the United Nations. there's no point in having someone in there who isn't even trying. Bolton's departure was a given, and should be no surprise to anyone.

Yeah, how dare Bolton show ... (Below threshold)
HERMIE:

Yeah, how dare Bolton show what a corrupt, ineffective, unaccountable bureaucracy the UN is.

I mean the UN has so many refugee children to rape and stand back while those in Darfur are buchered and Iran goes nuclear.


Bush should leave the posit... (Below threshold)
cubanbob:

Bush should leave the position vacant and withhold funding for the UN. The dems can run foreign policy if and when a dem gets elected president.

Since when does the UN EVER... (Below threshold)
Delta OP:

Since when does the UN EVER get anything done, Lee? They never want to enforce their own resolutions so it is pretty funny when you claim Bolton never got anything done - at least he tried to advance the positions of the United States. That is everything an ambassador to our country should be yet he was ridiculed for it by the liberal left who once again show that they have no understanding of the concept that playing nice with the rest of the world yields no benefit for us in terms of national security. I would rather be reviled in certain portions of the world than less safe. I mean, who cares if it means we get sympathy and empathy from the rest of the world if it means we have to watch terrorists fly planes through or buildings? Remember, all of the plotting and planning for the 9/11 attacks took place as we sat idly by and watched as our interests were attacked all over the world time and again. Our more aggressive position against terrorism today has seen ZERO attacks on the homeland or our interests abroad. Unless, of course, you want to count the attacks on our forces in Iraq but these really aren't terrorists who are doing these things are they?

Most of the rest of the nations participating in this sham of a governing body simply pretend to be actually doing something while they live the high life in New York and never pay their parking tickets...

there's no point in havi... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

there's no point in having someone in there who isn't even trying.

Talk about clueless.

Bolton was there as a reformer. You may not agree the UN needs reforming, but that's not the same as 'not trying'. Unless 'trying' is just going along with being part of an ineffective and corrupt organization.

Stephen Schlesinger, Direct... (Below threshold)
Lee:

Stephen Schlesinger, Director of the World Policy Institute at the New School University in New York City, on why Bolton must go.

"Bolton has never been a diplomat -- which, among his supporters, is regarded as a mark of honor. He hails from the Republican Party's extreme conservative wing. Bush chose him to please the most fervent right-wingers in his administration, most of whom either scorn or want to terminate the United Nations.

Bolton has for a long time been an excessive and unrestrained critic of the U.N.

Among his infamous utterances: that it wouldn't make a difference if 10 stories were sliced off the U.N. building; that the U.S. has no obligation to pay its dues to the organization; that the Security Council should be reduced to one member, namely the U.S.

And, perhaps his most notable sally, that "there's no such thing as the United Nations."

His record since taking over as ambassador in August 2005 has shown that his adversarial stance toward the institution has not softened.

In his first month as U.N. envoy, he gleefully undermined the most comprehensive reform movement in U.N. history by insisting on the adoption of hundreds of irrelevant amendments that were never going to be accepted by the General Assembly.

Later, when the U.N. did agree on one important change -- creating a new, reformed Human Rights Council -- he argued furiously against it, rallied just three other nations to the cause (out of 191) and eventually saw the U.S. go down to a humiliating defeat.

Then he turned around and said he would work with the council and help it financially but not join it. Which left Washington looking not just like a loser, but a whiny one at that.

As Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) remarked, Bolton was not just a bully, but an "ineffective" one."

How disingenuous of Bush to appoint someone to the UN who was deliberately ineffective.

How astute of Bush to realize those days are over.

A diplomat is someone who t... (Below threshold)

A diplomat is someone who tells you to go to hell in such a way that you actually look forward to the trip. Yep, I guess Bolton does fail in that regard.

More from Schlesinger (Sept... (Below threshold)
Lee:

More from Schlesinger (September 2006) on why Bolton must go. This is the second half of the column I quoted above, so same link applies.

As Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) remarked, Bolton was not just a bully, but an "ineffective" one.

In furtherance of his mission, Bolton also has promoted various pet causes at the institution. For example, when issues of population control or limiting the use of small arms come up, he brings into his office antiabortion activists and National Rifle Assn. members, respectively, to take the other side.

He has, on occasion, reportedly sneaked around his own nominal boss, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, to Vice President Dick Cheney's office to get support for his own hard-line views at the U.N. -- for example, his refusal last summer to endorse the U.N.'s Millennium Development Goals aimed at reducing poverty in the developing world.

Rice eventually forced him to reverse that stance.

To the extent that he has been able to operate at all at the United Nations -- most recently in the Israel-Hezbollah cease-fire -- he has had to bow to a new realism within the Bush administration, and yes, sometimes, to international pressure.

Even then, though, according to published news reports, he doesn't get along well with our allies. His bristling nature has left many bruised feelings among his colleagues. His accomplishments are marginal at best.

He may be among the most ineffective envoys the United States has ever sent to the U.N.

Just when the administration thought Bolton was finally going to be approved by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Lincoln Chafee (R-R.I.) began to raise questions about Bolton's performance and pushed to delay the vote.

The Bush administration is said to be exploring other ways to keep Bolton in the job.

A responsible nation that intends to harmonize differing viewpoints and work out compromises to further U.S. national security interests makes a serious error in appointing a Jacobin to work inside a collegial global body.

Bolton's presence on the same roster with previous U.S. envoys such as Henry Cabot Lodge, Adlai Stevenson, Arthur Goldberg, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Madeleine Albright, Richard Holbrooke and Bush appointees John Negroponte and John Danforth -- or, for that matter, with George H. W. Bush -- is a blemish on our nation.

His nomination should be rejected again by the Senate.

The Republican clown convention in Washington is drawing to an end, and Bolton's big floppy shoes and squeaking red nose won't be missed at all.

lee, judging by the comment... (Below threshold)
ke_future:

lee, judging by the comments in the clip you pasted in, i would say that guy was a liberal who believed in the UN above national interests. not likely to get much support or belief around here.

oh, and while the UN did "reform" the HRC, they made it worse not better. that's why Bolton argued against the changes that were proposed and later accepted. the way that academic makes his point, he neglects to mention the fact that the reforms that Bolton propsed were not the ones that he later argued against. there's a concrete example why not to take the good professor seriously.

The favorite to replace B... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

The favorite to replace Bolton appears to be Zalmay Khalilzad not the least because it would be difficult for the Dems to turn down a Muslim for the UN ambassadorship but he is probably otherwise occupied in Baghdad now..Here is a short list of some of the leading or lesser candidates.

See, good things do happen ... (Below threshold)

See, good things do happen when there is a balance of power in Washington. Who knew?!?!

Bolton has for a l... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:
Bolton has for a long time been an excessive and unrestrained critic of the U.N.

I'm not sure it's possible to be an excessive critic of the U.N. This is the same organization Saddam was able to bribe into ineffectualness. The U.S. goes before the U.N. in an attempt to justify the invasion of Iraq, but would Bush have done so if he knew Saddam had bribed the French and Russians to oppose any such action? The French or Russians were telling Saddam the U.S. would not invade up to the day the bombs began falling. Looks like Iraqi intelligence wasn't so good either. If Saddam would have had accurate intelligence about U.S. intentions, that it was no bluff, he likely would have complied with U.N. resolutions and avoided the war altogether. That's the problem with the U.N.. A little corruption and backstabbing can result in serious consequences for the world.

Yes yes, I know; it's all Bush's fault. Just remember that in 2 years Bush will be gone, but the U.N. will still be there. Will the new President have the courage to defend this nation's interests when dealing with a corrupt and anti-American U.N.?

And here's a good reason wh... (Below threshold)
Lee:

And here's a good reason why one cannot take anything George Bush says seriously. This is from his statement regarding Bolton's resignation.

"Over a year ago, I appointed Ambassador Bolton because I knew he would represent America's values and effectively confront difficult problems at the United Nations."

WRONG! Bush knew that with Bolton's appointment he could appease the wingnuts for a while, and attempt to hold the Republican Party together through the election. Now that the election is over Bolton has become lead weight, and is being jettisoned.

"represent America's values..."? There is very little the Republican administration does in Washington to represent the American values, and to use Bolton as a example is a sick cruel joke. Bolton's appointment represented the "values" of the value-less hardline conservatives -- who's "values" are in line with America's values less and less every day.

Bush doesn't even try to be honest with the American people anymore.

Hey "pucker puss" (lee lee)... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

Hey "pucker puss" (lee lee) the reason your liberal buddies don't want Bolton is because he does not have a permenent pucker like you and all democrats. To go to the UN for the demos you have to be a # 1 asskisser such as your post display.
B' google--chafee does more then "kiss" ass. Anyone that parts his hair in the middle like that has to be on the %&^%$ side-wink wink

Playing Devil's advocate he... (Below threshold)

Playing Devil's advocate here, what's to stop Condi from heading over to the UN and someone else--Jim Leach for example--taking the State job?

Hey "pucker puss" (lee lee)... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

Hey "pucker puss" (lee lee) why are you always quoteing someone else that is a bigger asskisser then you. Don't you have any orignal thoughts of your own. Oh excuse me,I forgot that you belong to the "club" (those with shit for brains)

God knows that last thing a... (Below threshold)

God knows that last thing any liberal worth his/her/its salt wants is an individual standing strong for America's best interests against the anti-America forces in their beloved U.N.

"American values," L... (Below threshold)
cmd:

"American values," Lee? I'm surprised your keyboard didn't burst into flames typing those words. I'm not surprised to find you defending an organization full of child rapists and kleptocrats - it's the Democrat party writ large.

And you wonder why we question your patriotism.

It is my belief that jhow66... (Below threshold)
hansel2:

It is my belief that jhow66 speaks for all conservatives and republicans eloquently and forcefully.

Hey "pucker puss" (lee lee) the reason your liberal buddies don't want Bolton is because he does not have a permenent pucker like you and all democrats.

I think it's hard to refute these deep and thoughtful posts.

Anyone that parts his hair in the middle like that has to be on the %&^%$ side-wink wink

I don't think William F. Buckley could have said it better. Why, in fact, let anyone else make the conservative argument when you have someone of such vast intelligence and high moral fiber.

Oh excuse me,I forgot that you belong to the "club" (those with shit for brains)

Democrats, we've all been trumped. This hairy ape of a man who sits in his basement smoking cigarettes, tugging at his soiled panties and gifting us with these brilliant, memorable posts has already won every argument we could possibly present.

Lee is an idiot. And appar... (Below threshold)
Jo:

Lee is an idiot. And apparently wants the child raping to continue.

Bolton was one of the best things out of the Bush administration.

The dems won an election, and now the feminization of America has begun.

My guess is John Kerry woul... (Below threshold)
Pagar:

My guess is John Kerry would not even be acceptable to the American left. He has only demonstrated the ability to say surrender in a few languages. They obviously want someone who
can say it in every language.

hansel2 - I would hope that... (Below threshold)
Lee:

hansel2 - I would hope that jhow uses Depends, but you're right -- I also suspect he wets himself when he gets all lathered up and on a roll. You can just hear his toothless gums slapping together as he bangs on his keyboard

he he...

cmd: "And you wonder why we question your patriotism."

No, I don't wonder about what you far-right nutcakes think of me at all. It doesn't concern me in the least. Your version of patriotism is is the blind, goose-stepping adherence to a failed, prehistoric ideology that was soundly drop-kicked out of the American political scene last November 7th. I could care less what the loooooosers think of me -- then or now.

I'm grateful he's gone.... (Below threshold)
John:

I'm grateful he's gone.

Jay Tea's central point is incorrect, however. This is not a soley a Democratic manuver.

Bolton is there on a recess appointment because a year and a half ago when the Republicans were running the show, and everything was going swimmingly, even then he didn't have enough support to clear the Republican lead Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Was he opposed by the Democrats? Sure. Did he have broad support among the Republicans? Nope.

In this case, politics worked as intended.

John

Hansel & gretal-you just ma... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

Hansel & gretal-you just made my day (excuse me I have to scratch my hairy ass) to see that I DO get under your skin. Old Bill Buckup should just post for all of us. Shore would beat your VERY intellectual posts-snicker snicker.Nice to see a know it all(so it thinks)get all red in the face and bang his key board thinking it comes thru on the other end. Keep them coming so that we don't have to watch comedy central. LMAO

I could care less what the ... (Below threshold)
IllTemperedCur:

I could care less what the loooooosers think of me -- then or now.

Actually, you DO care what we think, otherwise you wouldn't be commenting here ALL DAY, EVERY DAY.

Despite the loss of Bolton in this office, I get the feeling that we haven't seen the last of him. Look for him to be in the running for SecState in the next administration.

An ambassador is s... (Below threshold)
An ambassador is supposed to represent his nation's interests and government's views to the nation or body he is sent to.

The problem is, liberals want the UN's interests and views represented in the US rather than the other way around.

I never "got" the fierce... (Below threshold)
Clay:

I never "got" the fierce opposition to Bolton from the left.

You're kidding, right?

The modern liberal has turned away from family, community and nation to seek to destroy the cultural traditions that are built on them. They are totalitarians, despite all their chatter of ridding the world of 'totalizing language' (words meaning something). The great enemy of the anti-traditional ideologues of these postmodern times is the US. The American way of life represents a commitment to the political, ethical, and religious ideals that developed out of ancient Greece and Rome with a 'bunch of dead white guys'. Those traditions live on in the memory and actions of the American people although our collective memory is fading. America is strongest when Americans have a definitive sense of our culture (BTW, I said 'culture', not 'race'). A powerful US with a strong presence in the United Nations undermines the anti-traditional ideology. That's why Bolton had to go, and will be replaced by an impotent emissary.

Read Thucydides. Our future is in the history of the Peloponnesian War, unless we choose to alter it. If we do not return to our cultural roots of the Greek, the Roman, and the early Christian, we have already lost the battle and the war to Paul de Man and his ilk.

It took some serious par... (Below threshold)
Brian:

It took some serious partisan gaming and brinkmanship, but the Democrats in the Senate have succeeded in derailing John Bolton's career at the United Nations.

Jay, you have officially gone mad.

As John said, Bolton was a recess appointment in the first place because even the Republicans didn't have the votes to approve him. The only resulting "serious partisan gaming and brinkmanship" was Bush using a recess appointment to ram Bolton down the throats of the majority that clearly didn't want him.

Now that the Democrats are in power, they would have simply joined with the "no" voting Republicans and denied Bolton a majority. Sensing that future, Bolton resigned. And you call that "serious partisan gaming" and "derailing his career"?

You have lost all sense of proportion.

jhow66 is just a troll, and... (Below threshold)
Brian:

jhow66 is just a troll, and now has admitted as much. I'd say just ignore him and he'll go away, but he seems to enjoy merely seeing his own posts show up, and doesn't seem to care that no one responds to them. So be it, but don't feed the trolls.

Now that the Democrats a... (Below threshold)
Clay:

Now that the Democrats are in power, they would have simply joined with the "no" voting Republicans and denied Bolton a majority.

One big reason that I have scrapped the labels of 'Democrat' and 'Republican' is that they are meaningless, and allow people to be lazy. I don't believe for a second that the Reublicans against Bolton represent an interest in a strong US.

Illtempered I was thinking ... (Below threshold)
Jo:

Illtempered I was thinking the same thing. Lee cares very much what we think of him, otherwise he wouldn't post here everyday. Lee has a terrible time grasping the extremely obvious. lol.

One big reason that I ha... (Below threshold)
Brian:

One big reason that I have scrapped the labels of 'Democrat' and 'Republican' is that they are meaningless

Not in a post whose premise is that the big bad Democrats are playing "brinkmanship" simply by voting against the pure and righteous Republicans.

Not in a post whose prem... (Below threshold)
Clay:

Not in a post whose premise is that the big bad Democrats are playing "brinkmanship" simply by voting against the pure and righteous Republicans.

And you just demonstrated your idiocy by making a statement that proves you either didn't read my post or you didn't understand it. Now everyone knows.

jhow,Sometimes I l... (Below threshold)
hansel2:

jhow,

Sometimes I like to watch monkeys in a cage. Other times I'll put a piece of celery through the cage to offer it to one, then pull it out quickly before he can get a hold of it.

Then I'll watch the monkey get angry and sputter. It's not something that gets under my skin - it's just amusing - since you keep grabbing at that piece of celery.

This is verbal volleyball, fool. To get irritated by a mental midget like you is so far beyond the pale it's not even a discussion.

You'd be better off using your energies to debate an issue forcefully and smartly than doing what you do here - which is to shout and scream like a raving neanderthal - one with really bad grammar.

Sorry, that's unfair to neanderthals. Most of them have better articulation skills than you do.

Oh, and clean your panties.

Good posts, Lee... (Below threshold)
Herman:

Good posts, Lee

Uhh...Jay?You seem... (Below threshold)

Uhh...Jay?

You seem to have forgotten that it was two Republican senators, Voinovich and Chafee, that were primarily responsible for keeping Bolton's nomination from reaching the floor of the Senate. If they had voted for him he would have gotten his day on the floor (although probably not a vote since the Dems would have filibustered).

But that's their right under the Constitution. It's called "checks and balances". Something we've sorely lacked for the last 6 years (but we are going to see a lot more of coming January thankfully).

The Dems have approved a LOT of Bush appointees without filibustering. So you should ask yourself, why could Bolton not get approved when so many others did?


I nominate Lee for UN ambas... (Below threshold)
Mark:

I nominate Lee for UN ambassador.

Clay,Let me take a g... (Below threshold)
Robert:

Clay,
Let me take a guess when you scrapped the Democrat and Republican labels.

Was it the morning of November 8th, 2006 by any chance?

hansel&gretal--better then ... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

hansel&gretal--better then I thought-I really get under your skin. Nice. Glad to see you feed your brothers at the zoo (please skip my cage-I don't like celery). Sounds like we have someone here that wants you to think he is a well "learned" nerd. Oh almost forgot-I clean my panties everytime I see one of your post to remove what left of your brains.

brian-less--why would I care whether you answer or not-I already know I get under your skin--everyone now knows that you belong to the "club".

"pucker puss" (lee lee)--still working ain't it.




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