Creeping Boltonism

Via Andrew Sullivan (Who reads Hugh Hewitt so we don’t have to):

HH: Governor Romney, one of the first tasks for a conservative in the White House will be to get control of the Department of State, and the Central Intelligence Agency, that keep turning out these NIE’s and leaking things. Do you have the capacity to do that?

MR: You know, there’s nothing more political than corporate America. And you have to be able to rein in those individuals that are, if you will, doing things that harm our national interests. And I’ve watched with some concern over the past weeks, and years, frankly, it’s going to be very difficult to turn around our State Department, and get it to respond to the position that the President would take. John Bolton’s recent book, Surrender Is Not An Option, is a good inside look at how disruptive and counterproductive our efforts in the U.N., or our efforts at the State Department can be. But that is something which I’m up to, and I’m looking forward to.

Got that? If you’re pursuing a disastrous foreign policy and your intelligence service releases information showing just how totally off-base you are, the obvious thing to do is censor that agency more thoroughly. That’s one thing. But what really grabbed my attention about this quote is that Romney is apparently reading  John Bolton’s latest book. Which got me thinking – which other presidential candidate has been reading that again?

Oh, right. Duh.

Josh also gives a good rundown of how destructive Bolton’s been over the past few years, so I recommend watching the whole thing.Obviously Romney didn’t slip Bolton’s name into the interview just for the hell of it – he’s way too smart for that, and he can assume that Hewitt’s audience is an avid enough member of the GOP faithful that they know Bolton’s name. So this is his signal to the war hawks that by taking Bolton seriously he’s willing to be just as flat-out crazy on foreign policy as Rudy Giuliani is. Not only are the GOP candidates clamoring for the Reagan mantle, but now they’re fighting over who likes John Bolton more. Be afraid.


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