The Myth of the Sensible Republican Dies Hard
On the basis of this op-ed, Nick Kristof has few illusions about Mitt Romney's qualifications for president. He knows he would be at least as bad as Bush. Even so, he writes:
The Republican Party is caught in a civil war on foreign policy, and Romney refuses to pick sides. In contrast to his approach on the economy, he just doesn’t seem to have thought much about global issues. My hunch is that for secretary of state he would pick a steady hand, like Robert Zoellick, but Romney has also surrounded himself with volatile neocons.
Let's put aside for now how steady Mr. Zoellick's hands are and assume that he really is as sane as he's portrayed in the media to be (a dangerous assumption, I know, but let's just say). There is no way he would be Secretary of State in a Romney administration.
As Kristof implies above, Romney's attracting neocons to his campaign like flies to bullshit. But it's worse than Nick understands. As MoDo makes abundantly clear in a column adjacent to Kristof's, both Romney's and Ryan's empty little heads are being filled to the brim with the weird worldview of the neocons, and they've been parroting their positions on the stump. Now neocons no-likey Zoellick and they have a lot of friends in the media who would create a huge stink if Willard chose this presumed appeaser and China-lover who is "soft" on Israel.
No, my friends, Romney would surely nominate none other than the Moustache of Doom - the odious John Bolton - for Secretary of State. In the words of Daniel Larson of the American Conservative.
We should assume that a [John] Bolton nomination is quite possible in the event of a Romney victory, and a Bolton confirmation might be as well.
Instead of "assume" substitute the word "fear."For who is John Bolton? Well, among other things John Bolton said publicly in 2009:
Unless Israel is prepared to use nuclear weapons against Iran’s program, Iran will have nuclear weapons in the very near future.
Yeah, Bolton then qualified this by saying he meant to refer "merely"to Israeli military action, not a strike using nuclear weapons (his reasoning probably being that Israel couldn't use nukes because everyone knows Israel doesn't, um, have any).
But even if Bolton only misstated his intentions... that's one fuckuva stupid misstatement, the kind that could, you know, freak out a paranoid, unstable, isolated government and get them to do paranoid, unstable things. It's the kind of a thing no person should say if they want to be considered seriously for a high position requiring even a scintilla of diplomatic skill.
Yep. Romney, the master of putting his foot in his mouth when it comes to foreign policy, really hearts John Bolton. They're cut from the same cloth. And even now, as disgusted as he clearly is with Romney, Kristof still has a long way to go before he fully groks what is going on with the Republican Party, how truly sick it is, and how dangerous it is for any modern Republicans to hold power.