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April 29, 2005

With friends like Peggy

I'm sure Pegs means all this in the nicest possible way, but...

The case of John Bolton is about politics (unhousebroken conservatives must be stopped), payback (you tick me off, I'll pick you off) and personality. People who have worked with him allege he is heavy-handed, curmudgeonly and not necessarily lovably so.

I don't know him, but I suspect there's some truth in it. Do the charges disqualify him to serve as American ambassador to the United Nations? If reports of his behavior are true--he is tough, pushes too hard, sends pressuring e-mails and may or may not have berated a coworker as he threw paper balls at her hotel door--the answer is no.

Via Alicublog.

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Comments

Sure because we all know that people at the UN would be more than willing to work with someone who shows nothing but disrespect for the organization in public (I'm no fan of the UN either), especially since with the comments that it just needs to be completely re-built (very imperialistic).

The real reason the rest of the world hates the US: our moron leaders think the ideal ambassador is one that publicly offends the organization/country they are meant to be diplomatic towards. I guess if you want to be the next US ambassador to Germany, you should start publically comment that the Krauts have a shitty country.

How disappointing. I don't go to Peggers for defenses of male Republicans - I go to her for thinly-veiled erotic fantasizing about them, damn it!

The United States can count the United Nations as one of the most effective vehicles for the advancement of American interests in your nation's history. You have generally always had your way, and there is every indication that you will continue to get your way (and on the rare occasion that you don't, you'll just ignore the UN entirely). As long as you're always going to use the UN in this cynical and disingenuous way, is it too much to ask that you not send an asshole as your representative? Thanks.

I still find it hard to really get behind Bolton as ambassador - I mean, sure he's forceful in person and willing to do what it takes to get his point across, but is he forceful enough?

I'd just feel better about the whole thing if there was at least one documented instance of him stabbing someone, that's all.

Forgetting his management style for a moment, what is really the point of sending him to the UN? Is he really one of the smartest, most politically gifted, silver-tongued ambassadors we have? Because as much as the Right likes to trash the UN - there's nothing but politics going on there and Bolton seems singularly unqualified to play ball. What he does seem like is a big juicy spitball Bush is sending the UN's way. Bush is the one playing politics with the UN. Bolton is just his stooge. Once he's confirmed, he'll just be a placeholder. Bush's point will have been made.

The UN is a "china shop" in need of a "bull" like Bolton? I've obviously spent too much time around Peg's square hole... ^..^

To my mind, the two most legitimate criticisms of the UN are that it is full of nations run by dictators and that every country gets one vote. There is a valid, liberal criticism of the UN - it does not represent world opinion, instead it indirectly represents the viewpoint of the publics in the democracies and it fairly directly represents the viewpoints of the world's dictators.

It seems to me valid to send someone to the UN who is deeply critical of the UN, but that person should be passionately in favor of liberal democracy and, thus, ready to use their stint at the UN as a chance to preach the best ideals of America to the world - freedom of speech, freedom from unreasonable search, the right to equal treatment before the law.

Bolton is not that person.

I would think the claim that he tried to force people to falsify data would disqualify him even if the other stuff did not. Lots of people are jerks, and stubborn ones. But trying to make people lie to further your agenda seems pretty bad.
I think the best position on Bolton is this: he is a cruel, stubborn, dogmatic man who wouldn't know a reason (or argument) if it punched him in the face.
Peggy is right to think the above things do not disqualify him, but trying to make people lie does.

As long as you're always going to use the UN in this cynical and disingenuous way, is it too much to ask that you not send an asshole as your representative?

verbatim: I'm guessing the good, Christian, Patriotic answer to you question is "Yes"

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