Not that we need it, because evidence that Donald J. Trump is the pluperfect conman abounds, but…
Something occurred to me as I pondered the hiring of John Bolton to replace H.R. McMaster as National Security Adviser. That something is the fact that Bolton loved the Iraq War. He was one of the loudest voices supporting it, and one of the most prominent people pushing the nonsense about Saddam Hussein having weapons of mass destruction. Granted, we found out later there were in fact old stockpiles of chemical weapons, but they were there because another Republican president, Saint Ronald Ignatius Reagan I, supported Hussein at one time, and helped him acquire them.
In and of itself, a Republican president hiring a hawkish-as-fuck NatSec adviser isn’t that big of a deal. What makes this noteworthy is that this is that during the 2016 presidential election Trump mocked Hillary Clinton, to her face during a debate, about her support of the Iraq War. He even went so far as to say he never supported the Iraq War. Leave it to President Piss Pants to take something legitimate — criticizing someone for supporting a disastrous, illegal war — and ruin it with his smug stupidity. This isn’t to say Clinton deserves permanent scorn and derision, but a healthy skepticism of her hawkishness would have been warranted.
We all know why Trump was playing the “Iraq War was bad” card as a member of the same party that started the damn war — he wanted to win the election. He wanted to co-opt the messaging and populist fervor of a guy like Bernie Sanders. Most Americans have learned and accepted the truth about Iraq. It was a nightmare we never should have been in. What’s truly hilarious though, is that Trump was lying even during the debate. He backed the Iraq War. He may have been one of the many millions of us who woke up to the lies shortly after the war started, but there are tapes that conclusively show him supporting the invasion of Iraq, and they were made public during the election.
It just didn’t matter. The evangelicals hated abortion, and a large enough number of Republicans hated Democrats, enough to put a toddler in charge of the country instead.
John Bolton is a nightmare. He’s never met a war he didn’t want to get the U.S. into. But, just like his boss, he talks a big, tough game about our military might without actually ever having stepped up to serve in a combat zone. In fact, when given the chance during the Vietnam War, Bolton decided to join the Maryland National Guard, which was one way to avoid being drafted to serve in Vietnam. Don’t get me wrong, I would have dodged the draft for that war, and any war. I’d tell my own sons to do the same if the draft ever came back. But I’m not the National Security Adviser, and I’m sure as hell not pretending that I should be allowed to send your kids into war without ever having experienced the hell that war is.
During the election, Trump’s mocking of Hillary over the Iraq War made some idiotic pundits wonder if the era of the Republican Party proudly owning the war is over. Clearly, those people didn’t understand that Trump is not tethered to anything. Not his morals. Not his principles. Not his past statements. He is not married to a single thing, which makes sense given his marriages, like his online steak companies, seem to fail spectacularly every time. So of course Trump’s going to hire a hawkish, uber-right winger who loved the Iraq War.
That’s who elected the tiny-fingered fuckwit, so those are the cheap seats he’s playing to right now.
As always, I write these things not so much to change minds, because if you’re reading this you probably already understand the depth of hilarity and tragic irony Bolton’s hiring displays. You already get that this just means the GOP will never, ever concede that they suck at foreign policy worse than they suck at domestic policy, which they’re worse at than economic policy. So in the end, I’m just marking the hypocrisy for the record, and moving onto the next fake news story I write to blunt the pain of living through the satirical times we live in with the first satirical president “guiding” us all along the way.
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