George Bush announced that he's appointing John Bolton to be the US ambassador to the UN yesterday, despite the fact that his confirmation was basically declared a dead issue in Congress. As usual, the President couched his announcement in terms that strongly imply that anyone opposing him is being unreasonable. Consider his speech announcing his nomination of Judge Roberts to the Supreme Court, when he repeatedly said, "When the president appoints a Supreme Court justice...". He expects a rubber stamp on every one of his decisions, and when anyone opposes him he either ignores them or labels the person obstructionist.
This is par for the course in politics, of course. But I also recall that the President, before his first election, couldn't recall a single instance when he'd made a bad decision. I'm not inclined towards conspiracy theory, and I don't usually attribute entirely good OR evil intentions to anyone, but I have to wonder: does this guy really think that he's infallable? The reason Bolton didn't get the nod is because he is a completely inappropriate candidate, not because the Democrats were being bitchy about it. By appointing this guy during recess anyway, what Bush is really saying is, "I'm never wrong, and even when you think that you've beaten me I will still do whatever I want." This attitude is simple arrogance when normal people try it, but when the Prez acts this way it's ... well, REALLY arrogant.
The more I watch him the more I am convinced that Bush isn't simply not intelligent enough for his job, but that he is actively destructive and deeply immoral. He talks a lot about Jesus, but he doesn't seem particularly interested in what Jesus actually had to say.
I thus grow increasingly frustrated by the Democrats and their so-called opposition. The Democrats should be hounding this man out of the White House and back to his massive estates in Texas to live out the rest of his life in shame, but instead they continue to wring their hands and seem ready to shrug Roberts into a seat on the Supreme Court in September. Guys, if you fight then you might still lose, but at least you'll have gone down fighting. If you don't fight, though, you definitely won't prevail. Do we really need a "Braveheat"-type speech here? Am I the only one who thinks this is pathetic?
No, I think the Democrats are pathetic too.
by mg at August 2, 2005 7:18 AM
I don't pay much attention but it seems to me that this recess appointment deal is the ticket when it comes to troublesome appointees. They should use it more often. No fuss, no muss!
by anna at August 2, 2005 7:32 AM
Why shouldn't the president appoint who he wants? Isn't that the power our laws give him? Then when he makes a decision that you don't like, you blame Bush for being arrogant and stupid. Come on! It's no secret how the laws work. Bitch about the law and change it because if Bush doesn't have to get approval, he won't.
"But I also recall that the President, before his first election, couldn't recall a single instance when he'd made a bad decision."
That was a fucking loaded question and I wouldn't have answered it either.
Bolton a completely inappropriate candidate? How's that? I personally want a hard-ass in the UN. That's the only way anything will get done in that corrupt organization. Bush deeply immoral? Why? Because you don't like him?
The Democrats aren't fighting because they can't win. Bush can appoint who he wants and any attention to Bolton draws it off of Bush and makes him look like a nice guy in comparison. The Dems are using their energy to make Hilary look like a moderate, and they're going to need a lot of energy to do that.
by MrBlank at August 2, 2005 10:28 AM
MrBlank: The power to make recess appointments is there to deal with any eventualities that might pop up while Congress is out of session. That's not what happened here. The Prez made a nomination, and it didn't get through Congress. While he's right that we can't go this long without representation to the UN, the better response would've been to make a new nomination when it became clear that the first was not going to go anywhere, not to wait until Bolton's confirmation had been dead for months and then appoint him anyway as soon as it was possible to do it. He can legally do it, but I'm also legally entitled to play music at 1db under the legal definition of noise 24h a day. Doesn't mean I should.
As for that fucking loaded question: all of his opponents made at least some attempt to answer it, presumably because they recognized that refusing to answer it would be roughly the same as announcing that they don't believe their farts smell bad. The guy seems to believe that he's never wrong, and this bit of shenanigans makes sense when viewed in that light: Bolton probably wouldn't have passed the yeah-or-nay vote, even some Republicans admit that, but here he is again. As for why he's not appropriate, well ... when the USA is basically as unpopular as it's ever been, and when we need the cooperation of the rest of the world to acheive our goals, appointing an impolitic bully to be our representative to the most important international organization in the world doesn't look very good. Being a loud, obnoxious jerk isn't the same thing as being tough.
As for Hilary, I don't particularly care for her and don't believe she's the best candidate the Dems could offer for the presidency. I also think that she IS a moderate. The woman, much like her very realpolitik husband, is almost entirely middle-of-the-road, and like most of the Democrats in Congress has (reasonably so) approved most of Bush's nominations with a lot more ease and less whining than the Republicans did Clinton's nominees. The only reason that she looks like a liberal is because there really is no effective left in our government right now, so people on the far right must turn to moderates to find convenient enemies.
There are lots of people whose views I don't agree with. But it's possible to respect those with whom you disagree, as long as you accept that their views arise from an honest desire to do good works. Bush is immoral because he doesn't listen, nor does he care about, anyone's objections to his policies, even though those policies touch all of us. He can't be convinced of anything, nor does ever change his mind in the face of evidence, because he believes that he's always right. He's immoral because he chooses what's good for him and his friends over what's good for his country and world at large. If nothing else, he's immoral because he's against stem cell research. When Adam is against stem cell research, nothing happens. When the president opposes it, people die in 10 years for lack of treatment.
by Adam at August 2, 2005 12:23 PM
Should of, would of. The fact is he can and will. Whether or not it's the right decision is up to Bush, but because you don't like it doesn't necessarily mean it's the wrong one.
You're saying you can respect people who's views you don't agree with, but Bush is immoral because he doesn't agree with you? The stem cell research debate is nothing but a moral issue. Half the country thinks it's wrong to harvest cells from an embryo and the other half is fine with it. Is it immoral to think that life begins at conception? Do embryos have human rights? Is there an ethical reason not to manufacture embryos for stem cells? Either way, does that make half the country immoral?
This is what irks me. I see a lot of this from both sides. It's this mentality "I know why you think that, but you're wrong. Your reasons for thinking that are dumb/immoral. My philosophy is the correct one making me right."
by MrBlank at August 2, 2005 2:25 PM
I thought George should have selected Hillary for appointment to the Supreme Court. You don't hear a peep from the Supremes so she'd be really out of the public eye, it'd encourage some of the other older Supremes that they could retire without shifting the court too far to the right, Hilary'd be out of contention for 2008, and the dems would have no idea who else to nominate. Isn't that an awesome plan? After Rove gets ousted, I'll be waiting for a call from the GOP to take his place.
by mg at August 2, 2005 4:12 PM
For the record my farts smell great.
by anna at August 2, 2005 7:21 PM
Do you ever cup your hand and fart in it just to smell your farts?
Yeah, neither do I.
by Long Time Lurker at August 3, 2005 11:31 AM
I knew a guy who did that all the time. He liked how they smelled. He was odd. I worked with him at a grocery store where he'd fart in his hand and then touch food.
by MrBlank at August 3, 2005 2:27 PM
No but I have tried to do that with my breath to see how badly it stinks. It never works.
by anna at August 4, 2005 7:44 AM
It's not that he thinks he's never wrong. It's that he has a plan and he's going to do his damnest to carry it out. The only reason he's so effective has nothing to do with his style, but more to do with his boss Carl Rove, and the neocon blitz on our system. Neocon leadership still has a lot of the conservatives fooled, but a few are starting to wish up. Bush may be remembered well despite his nonsense, but his heir-apparent won't be.
by fcsuper at August 5, 2005 2:33 AM
It is hard to figure if he really is as decisive as he seems or if he is just so stupid he doesn't know any better. But in my opinion the Democrats will never regain control of anything until they jettison their leftist wing and accept that the general public doesn't care much about what they do. "Reproductive rights" i.e. the right not to reproduce even though you got knocked up is a prime example.
by anna at August 5, 2005 7:38 PM