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A Thought on John Bolton

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In the efforts to block the nomination of John Bolton as Ambassador to the UN much has been made of his personal behavior, his reputed temper, his dealings with underlings and his brash manner. His actual beliefs and positions while at the State Department have been brought up, but some issues on which he’s been very outspoken have been studiously, even deliberately avoided. Right now the main sticking point seems to be Bolton’s unwillingness to release drafts of research he did on WMDs in Syria – documents which have nothing to do with his appointment, and which Senators could request through regular channels rather than using the confirmation hearings as a fishing expedition.

What Bolton’s opponents are dancing around, but may actually be their main objection to his nomination, is his very strong opposition to gun control and international interference in the US legal system. While at the State Department, Bolton was instrumental in blocking efforts at the UN to pass sweeping gun control mandates which would have attempted to override the 2nd Amendment of the US Constitution. He was also very active in blocking efforts to keep the International Criminal Court from having even highly limited jurisdiction within the US. Given these and similar positions opposing international interference in US sovereignty, it’s not surprising that the most outspoken internationalists and the biggest anti-gun figures in the Senate are among those working hardest to oppose Bolton.

One of Bolton’s most outspoken opponents is Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT), who is on record as having voted for every gun control measure ever put before him as well as voting in favor of eliminating sanctions against Cuba, Vietnam and China, supporting the IMF and the World Court, and voting against preserving US sovereignty and for internationalist interests at every opportunity. Dodd is essentially spearheading the opposition to Bolton, and he’s more anti-gun and pro UN than anyone in the Senate. He has help, of course, from folks like anti-gun extremist Diane Feinstein (D-CA) and fellow internationalist and gun-hater Charles Shumer (D-NY). Now, you might argue that all the Democrats are against guns and for surrendering US sovereignty to the UN and international treaty organizations, but the key fact is that other Democrats are mostly just along for the ride, it’s the really rabid internationalists who are leading the opposition.

It has also been suggested that one of the most important unmentionable sticking points on Bolton is that he was so successful in previous work with the UN on getting them to change their longstanding language condemning all zionism as racism, persuading them to take a somewhat more moderate stand towards Israel, at least on paper. Apparently this does not sit well with some of the strongly anti-Israeli interests which back the most extreme Democrats, but that’s an area of discussion so controversial that no one would dare to bring it up, so they have to go after Bolton on trivialities and personalities.

What it comes down to is that the real complaint against Bolton is not his supposed abrasive personality, it’s that he’s seen as being too pro-American for a job in international affairs – a job for which he has proven himself eminently qualified. He believes that our laws and our rights should come first and that we should stand up for and protect our sovereignty. To internationalists that’s an unforgivable sin, even if they can’t say so in public and have to look for a succession of weak excuses for opposing his nomination.

Dave

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About Dave Nalle

  • Nancy

    No – the real issue with Bolton is reflected in the fact that the first thing Condi Rice did was put him out in left field, where he couldn’t manipulate HER with his selective data and obstructive behavior, the way he did Powell. Additionally, if you’ve never worked for an asshole like Bolton, you have no idea of the havoc he can wreak among his own people – and he’s supposed to be working on OUR side. Someone like that can completely destroy even an established department with tight-knit teams working there. Nor do we need him losing his temper or his mind and chasing opponents (especially women – it just doesn’t look well) into closets and screaming epithets thru their locked doors. Furthermore, as pointed out by even Republican members, why appoint someone who’s going to need to be babysat or closely supervised to ensure that, while he’s doing what he’s supposed to do, he also doesn’t wreck that goodwill we do have – which at this point is little enough. According to articles recently in the W. Post & NY Times, people in the upper ranks of the administration as well as at State have been wondering why Bush would propose this guy, as his cons far outweigh his pros, in addition to which he has been characterized in his own department as “unprofessional” and “a liar”. Hardly the kind of person who should be representing the US. I suspect Smirk nominated him because he felt not only that Bolton’s abrasiveness would teach the UN a lesson, but also because W has a sadistic streak in him. He likes people to do things, but he like even more to force people to do things against their will, especially when it’s anyone who opposes him or who he otherwise thinks he has a grudge against. This is an old and established pattern of behavior of his that has been noted even back while he was Gov. of Texas, as noted by loyal Texans.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    And you DO have an idea of the havoc he can wreak how, specifically?

  • Nancy

    Well, let’s see. When I was working for a similar guy, he seemed to bring out the worst in everyone under him. Some started spying on others (with his encouragement) in order to curry favor. This meant no one trusted anyone else to either help them with tasks formerly shared, nor would anyone pass information along, even when it was helpful, because you never knew how it would be used against you. Really! so productivity fell. Precipitously. Sick calls increased. Turnover increased. This in turn meant work loads on those remaining increased, mistakes increased because people didn’t have enough time to properly attend to the details of their work. Meanwhile, Mr. Psycho would lay ‘traps’, especially (but not exclusively) for his subordinates he didn’t like, regardless of whether they were in fact good employees and workers or not. Which meant morale was non-existant. This got carried over to people’s home lives as well, with adverse results as tension at work increased.

    It took almost 2 1/2 years for upper management to realize that what was wrong wasn’t the employees but the manager, and he was replaced by a normal boss, but the damage had been done. I occasionally see people from that office, and even years after, it is still a far cry from the performance level it had started out as (this is a federal place we’re talking about, btw.). Can I give you statistics? No, certainly not. I don’t have access to them and wouldn’t know where to look. But I saw the toll it took on professional performance, personal lives, the dept.’s reputation, etc. If you’ve been lucky enough never to have encountered a nutcase like Bolton in YOUR professional life, get down on your knees & thank God. People like that really can destroy not only the workplace, but the people who work for them too. Nuff said?

  • http://miriamsideas.blogspot.com miriam

    I think Dave is right. Who knows what he is like in the “workplace.” That stuff sounds like bs to me.

    I bet Chris Dodd is a treat to work for–when last I heard about him, he was throwing drinks at women in bars.

  • wahoo

    What has Dave Nalle been smoking?

    “What it comes down to is that the real complaint against Bolton is not his supposed abrasive personality.”

    Yes, Dave, it is his abrasive personality.

    “Bolton is too pro-American for a job in international affairs.”

    No, Dave, being too pro-American is not the problem.

    “Bolton believes that our laws and our rights should come first and that we should stand up for and protect our sovereignty.”

    There are millions of others in this country who have who have a stronger respect for our laws and that our rights should come first and that we should stand up for and protect our sovereignty.

    So why pick someone like Bolton who is tarnished?

    “To internationalists protecting our sovereignty is an unforgivable sin.”

    But it is Bush and his lying gang that are the “internationalists” here.

    “They can’t say so in public and have to look for a succession of weak excuses for opposing his nomination.”

    Bush and his lying gang are the ones who can’t say in public what they have been up to and do nothing but provide a succession of weak excuses for what they have done and are doing.

    Dave Nalle, hang your head in shame for spreading this Bush propaganda.

  • http://gonzo-marx.blogspot.com gonzo marx

    ok..correct me if i am wrong here, but the job in Question is that of top diplomat from the US to the UN…yes?

    definition of a diplomat is …* One who uses skill and tact in dealing with others.*

    defining diplomacy would be…*Tact and skill in dealing with people.*

    so, one would gather that the most important qualification woudl be exhibiting “ract and skill” in dealing with the UN in the name of the United States in order to gain the most advantage for our Nation

    does the public record of Mr Bolton show that he is highly qualified to perform this function in our Names?

    not by what i have seen so far in the Senate testimony, including much that was submitted and testified to by professionals in the State Department, including republican appointees

    the one sticking point that the Dems keep hitting on involve these “intercepts” which the Administration is NOT releasing to the Senate committee

    note, they are NOT claiming “executive privelege” or anything else like that…just saying “no”

    now, personally, if i were a sitting Senator and the WH thumbed their nose at my committee in it’s function of “advise and consent” in such important matters woud dig my heels in and say “no info, no cloture” since that is the only tool available to protect the senate’s perogatives

    add to that the preponderance of evidence that Mr Bolton , while he may be very good at some things, has shown he is NOT skilled and tactful when dealing with others

    his own comments about the UN don’t help him here

    your mileage may vary

    Excelsior!

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com andy marsh

    but if that’s the guy that the president wants for the job…and he meets the quals…and he does…he’s a career diplomat…so what if he might rub a few noses the wrong way at the UN…they deserve it…why doesn’t he at least get a vote?

    Isn’t that what this democracy thing is supposed to be about? You know…voting and shit like that there!

  • http://gonzo-marx.blogspot.com gonzo marx

    oh Andy..civics lesson now too?

    go back and read what i wrote again..i show you the why of it

    now remember…the Congress was designed to be the rough and tumble, majority rules place to stir shit up in partisan fashion

    the Senate was designed, by dint of ALL states being represented equally, to be “the saucer in which the tea is cooled”

    a place for thoughtful debate, where the bar of getting silly shit done would be raised higher than the Congress, to stop bad things from being done via ignorance, the passion of the moment, or simnple greed and stupidity

    thus my argument, and some of the senator’s as well, that until the requested documentation is released, the senate is stopped from adequately performing their constitutional role of “advise and consent”

    now, you can disagree with it, even think that it is just partisan bullshit…and you might be correct…but that uis the way it was designed, to provide checks and balances to the Executive branch

    you want him to get his up and down vote…give the committee the asked for documents, remove their Reason for the obstruction…then you can point at them and say they ain’t doing their job, rather than them saying “we can’t do our job because the WH is holding up stuff we need to make our decision”

    see the difference?

    a lot fo it has to do with preventing the tyranny of the majority, preventing shit being done in the heat and passion of the moment…hell, a lot of the system was set up to try really hard to NOT let anyone get anything done unless it was a really good Idea that could carry 2/3 of the folks involved

    and Bolton is a carreer bueracrat NOT diplomat…see my quoted definitions above

    then go and look at the senate testimony, including the shit from republicans that served with him in State

    then we can talk if you still have stuff that needs covering

    k?

    Excelsior!

  • wahoo

    No gonzo — not “preventing the tyranny of the majority” — but “preventing the tyranny of government.”

    They had no experience with a “majority” as such — what they had experienced was the tyranny of the Crown, which is exactly what we are experiencing today. Take note that the “majority” now say Iraq is a mistake — but we are compelled to “stay the course” by the “Crown”.

    And to add to that we have a Supreme Court which is now dictating that the “Crown” can take away our property rights.

    That is real tyranny.

  • http://gonzo-marx.blogspot.com gonzo marx

    very good points

    i can get behind almost anything that is in opposition to tyranny in any form

    but i do stand behind the concept that there can be a tyranny of the majority, and that “minority rights” as well as the designed system of checks and balances are tools to prevent the trampling of even a single Individual’s Rights

    unfortunately , it doesn’t always work

    that doesn’t mean that i, for one, will give up on it

    nuff said?

    Excelsior!

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com andy marsh

    gonzo – didn’t it start out with give him a vote…then a couple of boneheads said…ok…give us this first…so they got whatever that was….the bullshit about him strong arming some woman…they found out that wouldn’t stop it so they started digging around…found a little more bullshit…said ok…give us this stuff…whatever it was at that specific time…I don’t know some other story about him telling somebody to go ot hell…oh yeah…a speach to one of hte Koreas…then it was these papers…so what the fuck??? how many times…it never stops!

  • SFC SKI

    They are afraid they’ll lose the vote, or win the vote but the UN will remainthe ineffectual waste of good real estate is has become, and they’ll get blamed. The party of Inaction at work, no plan, just sidline sniping.
    Please let them find some leadership so we can get on to the real work.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com andy marsh

    oh and gonzo – thanks for that checks and balances thing…you really can be so helpful sometimes!

  • Venice-13

    Bolton’s got his own agenda.

    Below is a segment from a ZNet article (6-28-05) called “Tipping Point” written by Phyllis Bennis”

    “There remains, however, a key example of Bolton’s disqualifying behavior that has yet to be brought to the center of the campaign, and no one in congress seems prepared to open the subject. Broken first in U.S. News and World Report (May 9, 2005), the story describes how some State Department analysts were concerned that Israel’s July 2002 use of a U.S.-supplied F-16 bomber in an assassination attempt in Gaza might violate the U.S. Arms Export Control Act. The bombing, at 3:00 a.m. in a crowded Gaza neighborhood, killed Israel’s designated target, Hamas leader Salah Shehadeh, and also killed 14 civilians, 13 of them young children. The officials wrote a “split” memo to Secretary of State Powell outlining their concerns but also including an opposing view.
    Bolton got hold of the memo, deleted all references to the concerns regarding AECA violations, and sent a memo to Powell essentially reassuring
    him there were no violations to worry about.”

    I see that as seriously troubling. Anyone agree?

  • http://gonzo-marx.blogspot.com gonzo marx

    /agree

    troubling indeed if corroborated

    perhaps it is part of the “intercepts”?

    we will see…

    Excelsior!

  • wahoo

    Another promotion to match that of Bolton and Wolfowitz.

    Meet Stephen Hadley.

    Unknown to the public at large, Stephen Hadley, once convicted of fraud, he became the lawyer of the largest arms manufacturer in the world, Lockheed Martin. He trained the candidate George W. Bush, wrote up the new nuclear doctrine, prepared the creation of the Department of Homeland Security, supervised new entries into NATO, and sold the invasion of Iraq. Eventually he was rewarded by becoming National Security Advisor for George W. Bush.

    To sell this war, he transmitted the documents attesting that Saddam Hussein attempted to obtain nuclear materials from Niger to the UN. It was also he who attested to the secret rendezvous in Prague between Mohammed Atta, presumed chief of the September 11 attacks, and a member of the Iraqi secret service. He took from that proof that “Saddam” had plotted against America and that he was ready to strike with an atomic bomb.

    But the documents were obvious forgeries, the rendezvous was a false report, and the invasion of Iraq a military fiasco. Mr. Hadley accepted the blame to protect George Bush. He assumed responsibility for all the errors. It was assumed that he had been completely burned, but in November 2004, George W. Bush chose him to become his National Security Advisor for his second administration.

    http://www.voltairenetwork.net/article17.html

  • wahoo

    Venice-13:

    True. Bolton’s got his own agenda.

    And your information is seriously troubling.

    But Bolton’s just following what “the Americans know” — you don’t mess with Israel.

    Israel Radio (Kol Yisrael), reported on Oct. 3, 2001, that Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, had boasted at a Cabinet meeting, “I want to tell you something very clear, don’t worry about American pressure on Israel, we, the Jewish people control America, and the Americans know it.”

    Therein lies the problem. Our lackeys cringe when AIPAC speaks.

  • horkulated

    Bolton is an untrustworthy loose cannon and a proven liar. And I’ll bet you dollars to doughnuts his name is eventually linked – indirectly or otherwise – to the leaking of former CIA NOC Valerie Plame’s name to the press. Seems Bolton was sabotaging anti-WMD-proliferation efforts at the same time Plame was working with a CIA cover company to stop their spread.

  • horkulated

    Stephen Hadley may not be promoted. His name is also being mentioned in connection to the leaking of Plame’s name – and if TIME forks over documents to the grand jury, it’s likely that there will be indictments.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>There are millions of others in this country who have who have a stronger respect for our laws and that our rights should come first and that we should stand up for and protect our sovereignty.

    So why pick someone like Bolton who is tarnished?< <

    Because he has the experience and the backround for the job. And to all appearances he wasn't tarnished whe he was nominated. The 'tarnish' was more or less fabricated to have something to go after him with because he wouldn't sign on to the internationalist agenda.

    >>But it is Bush and his lying gang that are the “internationalists” here.<<

    They aren’t one-worlders, they’re international capitalists. Hardly the same thing.

    (politically biased pablum deleted)

    Dave

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>ok..correct me if i am wrong here, but the job in Question is that of top diplomat from the US to the UN…yes?

    definition of a diplomat is …* One who uses skill and tact in dealing with others.*< <

    Actually, gonzo, he's not entirely a diplomat. His actual job title is 'ambassador'. Which means he represents the interests of his country and its government, and those interests might in fact be giving the UN an un-diplomatic kick in the ass.

    >>does the public record of Mr Bolton show that he is highly qualified to perform this function in our Names?< <

    Yes, from what I've read it does.

    >>not by what i have seen so far in the Senate testimony, including much that was submitted and testified to by professionals in the State Department, including republican appointees< <

    But look at the negotiations he's led and the deals he's made. They suggest that he knows what he's doing despite the smear campaign.

    >>the one sticking point that the Dems keep hitting on involve these “intercepts” which the Administration is NOT releasing to the Senate committee<<

    Which really have relatively little to do with Bolton. They’re unfairly using his nomination as a club to get that info out of the administration.

    Dave

  • http://gonzo-marx.blogspot.com gonzo marx

    once again, Mr Nalle..we are just going to have to disagree

    i am betting you can find 1000 conservatives who are better suited as well as more qualified for the job

    my own Opinion is that Bolton is being sent to the UN in the same way that Wolfowittz was sent to the World Bank

    to destroy them

    both Institutions are anathema to the neocons, and Bolton is on the record with his opinion of the UN

    not up to me, i was just tossing in my observations and opinion….as always….

    your mileage may vary

    Excelsior!

  • beadtot

    J. B. should consult the oracle — an ancient memory-perfect oracle-shown image of a Black African volcano will expand his mind.

  • Venice-13

    Hey wahoo:

    I hear you loud and clear. I’m a Jew, so that really does cut me a little slack (sometimes) with regard to my comments. I’m usually spared the “anti-Semite” … but not always. Yes, you are entirely correct. Any questions, comments, concerns that may involve criticism Israel (even lightly) are highly TABOO. Journalists, media pundits, public servants, politicians all exercise extreme care because history has proven it can mean huge problems and the end of their careers. AIPAC, replete with spies for Israel, is an incredibly powerful force. ADL can inflict some serious smear, too.

    By the way, being a Jew has not spared me the “self-hating Jew” label. I truly resent that label, as I’m an injustice-hating Jew.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>i am betting you can find 1000 conservatives who are better suited as well as more qualified for the job< <

    Don't bet on it. The State Department has long been dominated by leftists and finding even a few conservatives there is a challenge. I imagine much of Bolton's attitude developed out of having to fight his way through the mess of leftism which is the State Department, facing considerable harassment and resistence from underlings as a conservative and an appointee. I think this dynamic explains his 'bad reputation'. He was a conservative sent in to supervise and work over dyed in the wool and likely very uncooperative leftist career bureaucrats. It's not surprising there was friction and that they didn't like him.

    >>my own Opinion is that Bolton is being sent to the UN in the same way that Wolfowittz was sent to the World Bank

    to destroy them< <

    Let's hope.

    >>both Institutions are anathema to the neocons, and Bolton is on the record with his opinion of the UN<<

    They’re not anathema to Neocons, they’re anathema to the welfare of the US and equitable government everywhere.

    Dave

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    I think I agree with the Daily Show on this one…

    John Bolton was appointed as UN ambassador because George Bush has big balls.

  • wahoo

    Big balls and no brains.

  • wahoo

    Wahoo said — “But it is Bush and his lying gang that are the “internationalists” here.”

    Dave Nalle responded — “They aren’t one-worlders, they’re international capitalists. Hardly the same thing.”

    Yes indeed — hardly the same thing.

    The following sheds some light on the difference:

    Internationalist — Being international in character, principles, concern, or attitude, or conducting policies or actions between nations especially in politics and economic matters.

    International capitalist — an international corporation or investor.

    So “Bush and his lying gang” are what?

    This raises the question — if Dave Nalle can’t get his definitions and facts straight — what does that say about his opinions?

  • Nancy

    Bolton is someone who’s been charged on record w/lying, trying to sabotage his own boss by careful editing of vital information to suit his own ends, and physically attacking – assault & battery – people he’s mad at. If he hasn’t been convicted, it’s only because no one’s ever brought formal charges, or if they have, the WH has successfully quashed them on his behalf. What the hell?! If Bush wants a no-holds-barred representative, why not just nominate G. Gordon Liddy? Not much difference; they’re both maniacs.

    The main point is, he is disloyal, unstable, and untrustworthy to his own superiors. This is a matter of record, not opinion or even allegation. Someone like that has NO place representing the US in ANY capacity.

  • wahoo

    Great Idea!

    Appoint G. Gordon Liddy!

    At least his enemies were not his own associates.

  • HW Saxton

    G. Gordon Liddy eh,?!!???? That’s at least as good of an idea as Bolton.LOL!

    As much as I detest G.G.Liddy and all he
    stands for,his book “Will” was one of the most perversely fascinating books I’ve ever read in my life. For an inside
    look into the mind of a completely crazy
    fascist bastard, I’d recommend it to anyone and everyone.

  • JR

    Yeah, “Will” is a good book.

    Give Liddy some credit for doing speaking tours with Timothy Leary; but with Leary’s death, Liddy seems to have lost his counterweight and gone off the rails.

  • HW Saxton

    Very true,JR. I’ve seen G. Gordon Liddy publicly speak twice. Once at UNLV in Las Vegas NV with Leary and once at a convention in Las Vegas some (maybe 12 yrs?) years back. He was definitely an interesting character especially when countered with Timothy Leary who wasn’t really all that entertaining much to my surprise and also my dismay.

  • HW Saxton

    Very true,JR. I’ve seen G. Gordon Liddy publicly speak twice. Once at UNLV in Las Vegas NV with Leary and once at a convention in Las Vegas some (maybe 12 yrs?) years back. He was definitely an interesting character especially when countered with Timothy Leary who wasn’t really all that entertaining much to my surprise and also my dismay.

  • http://www.psychopundit.com Dave Nalle

    What I think you guys are missing here is the very real possibility that these accusations against Bolton are a smear job encouraged by Senators like Chris Dodd and gladly joined into by leftists at the state department who had it in for him because he’s a conservative.

    Dave

  • http://gonzo-marx.blogspot.com gonzo marx

    Mr Nalle, i thinkm you may have missed that some of the points raised could be completely accurate and/or that some folks think that Bolton is not the right man for th ejob

    as for “leftists” gunning for him, i coutned at least 3 GOP folks from state that testified against him at the hearings…i do grant you that there were more that were either politically opposed or whose affiliations were not readily determinable

    but not all those who spoke against him seemed to do so from anything near to partisan motives

    the WH can end the stalling instantly..give out th edocuments and shut up the dem partisans…

    unless there is something to hide?

    if not, then why not just give it to them, if they had a good reason to keep them quiet, “executive privelege” or some such reason could have been given

    not just “no” because i said so kind of shit

    that doesn’t help the WH cause on this one

    but the point will be moot, the WH will just do a recess appointment over the holiday

    Excelsior!

  • Wisdo

    “>>my own Opinion is that Bolton is being sent to the UN in the same way that Wolfowittz was sent to the World Bank

    to destroy them<<

    Let’s hope.”

    Really? well 1. maybe you shouldnt have set them up in the first place.
    2 Maybe you shouldnt be controlling both of them
    3 Maybe you should remember that America is one of the worlds countries, not the whole world.

    The United Nations is not some foreighn place or country. It is an international institution, formed by the United States, Its headquarters are in the United States. Only a handful of countries has a veto or sits on the security council – chiefly america and its allies. America picks and chooses which UN resolutions to follow and which to ignore, while DEMANDING that every other nation follow every last one. The reason the UN has so little power is that the United States wants it that way.

    I think most of the countries of the world would be quite pleased if the UN or World bank dissappeared as they are used to bully and control the rest of the world. In fact most of the countries of the world would probably be pleased if America itself would just fuck off by itself for a good long while.