Wednesday, August 5, 2009

John Bolton swings and misses.

A mere hours after his Washington Post column calling Bill Clinton's trip to North Korea "kneejerk" / "an act of obeisance" was published, North Korea pardons the American journalists it had imprisoned.

If the former (Bush appointed) UN ambassador had had his way, Laura Ling and Euna Lee would still be sitting in a North Korean labour camp, simply to satiate his PNAC fantasy of American-strength-through-non-diplomacy.

...Another Neocon joins the Kristol/Perle "Wrong about everything" club.


18 comments:

Patrick Ross said...

"If the former (Bush appointed) UN ambassador had had his way, Laura Ling and Euna Lee would still be sitting in a North Korean labour camp, simply to satiate his PNAC fantasy of American-strength-through-non-diplomacy."

Hmmmm.

That's a rather extreme statement, wouldn't you say?

Seems to be more reasonable to say that if John Bolton had his way those journalists never would have been in North Korean custody at all.

Audrey II said...

I wouldn't say that's a "rather extreme statement". Bolton had a chance to give his reaction to a particular set of existing circumstances, and he denounced the very action that brought about the release of the reporters.

I also don't think your conjecture is "more reasonable" than observable causation. The causal link between Clinton's actions (which Bolton decried) and the release of the journalists seems to me to be much more concrete than your hypothetical with no causal support provided whatsoever.

I'm not sure that appealing to your own expertise on what "seems reasonable" carries the weight you want it to.

Patrick Ross said...

Well, Audrey, considering that your conjecture intentionally uses information that is actually entirely unrelated to the circumstances of these prisoners release -- you take pains to note that Bolton was appointed by George W Bush -- I'd say that mine is much more sound.

I could tell you what the charity principle tells us about your comments here, but you've demonstrated yourself to be so inept in regards to philosophical matters that I fear I'd be wasting my time with you.

The difference being, of course, that mine doesn't require one to transcribe the most flagrant lack of human sympathy possible to Bolton.

hemmingforddogblog said...

"...but you've demonstrated yourself to be so inept..."

Hahahaha...who knew Thwatrick had a sense of humour. Defending the Mustache of Doom...really.

Patrick Ross said...

Oh dear lord, not mockery from a dog blogger!

Come back and see me again when you have something worthwhile to say.


Now that the trash is taken out, back to Audrey (which may seem like a monotonous statement, I know).

Have you figured it out yet, Audrey? What the charity principle says about your comments here? Or do you need it explained to you?

Audrey II said...

I understand quite well what the "charity principle" is. What you think it says about my comments here is another matter. Of course, when you can't even accurately summarize what's being argued, discussing how other constructs apply becomes somewhat problematic.

Patrick Ross said...

See, Audrey, here's the thing.

You're lying. Again. And you know it.

Let's take a look at what you had to say here. I'm going to continue quoting these words until you're honest about this matter:

"If the former (Bush appointed) UN ambassador had had his way, Laura Ling and Euna Lee would still be sitting in a North Korean labour camp, simply to satiate his PNAC fantasy of American-strength-through-non-diplomacy."

Once again: your words. Your responsibility.

And considering that no part of your argument holds water, I'm not at all shocked that you're trying to distract people by falsely claiming you've been misrepresented.

Patrick Ross said...

"If the former (Bush appointed) UN ambassador had had his way, Laura Ling and Euna Lee would still be sitting in a North Korean labour camp, simply to satiate his PNAC fantasy of American-strength-through-non-diplomacy."

Look at that, Audrey. Who wrote that? Did I write that? Or did you write that? Who wrote that?

Be honest now.

Audrey II said...

I wrote what I posted above.

I didn't write that Bolton "wanted to see Ling and Lee in prison". Someone else did that, and disingenuously attempted to pass it off as my argument. Care to guess who that person might have been?

"Lying", indeed!

Patrick Ross said...

Audrey, you're lying. And everyone knows it. Let's take another look at your words here (we'll keep on doing it until you start being honest):

"If the former (Bush appointed) UN ambassador had had his way, Laura Ling and Euna Lee would still be sitting in a North Korean labour camp, simply to satiate his PNAC fantasy of American-strength-through-non-diplomacy."

And how, Audrey, do you presume to know what would have happened if John Bolton "had had his way"? Are you a psychic?

One could just as easily argue that if John Bolton "had had his way" those two journalists never would have been arrested in the first place.

But even beyond that, it's amusing that you yourself decline to address Bolton's actual argument -- in this case, that cutting deals with North Korea over the matter (with a regime that has shown itself to be generally malfeasant in matters related to diplomacy) will only encourage them or regimes similar to them to commit further acts in future.

But this being said, Audrey, let's educate you about the charity principle -- the philosophical principle that suggests people transcribe their own motivations to the actions of others.

Your eagerness to insist that Bolton would have preferred these journalists to remain in prison to satisfy his political purposes is very suggestive of what you yourself would do if given decision-making power in such a situation.

Of course, we know you won't be honest about this, either.

Audrey II said...

Wow, a baseless accusation of dishonesty in response to the identification of a factual inaccuracy. Who could ever have predicted that?

I'm not sure whether you're merely pretending not to understand the difference between intent and consequence or that you actually don't, but I doubt many of the readers here are that dumb.

My commentary on the consequence of Bolton's position (whether intended or not) are above in their original form, and don't magically transform into what you claimed them to be in your post no matter how many times you cut, paste, call me a "liar", or repeat your inaccurate summation of my argument.

It doesn't say much for the strength of your argumentative abilities that, instead of addressing what others actually argue, you have to continually stage show battles with windmills.

Patrick Ross said...

That's amusing, Audrey. Let's talk about factual inaccuracies. Let's take another look at what you wrote:

"If the former (Bush appointed) UN ambassador had had his way, Laura Ling and Euna Lee would still be sitting in a North Korean labour camp, simply to satiate his PNAC fantasy of American-strength-through-non-diplomacy."

I'm still waiting for you to defend your authority to state what John Bolton would have gotten if he had "gotten his way".

I'm willing to bet that if Bolton had "gotten his way", Lee and Ling would never have been in North Korean captivity in the first place.

And that's before I even call on you to address the real substance of Bolton's column -- the folly of continuing to deal diplomatically with regimes that have shown themselves to be utterly malfeasant in regards to diplomacy.

Quite frankly, Audrey, the fact that you refuse to accept responsibility for your arguments speaks volumes about the poor strength of your own argumentative abilities.

Audrey II said...

Merely cutting and pasting my words doesn't magically transform them into "Bolton wanted to see Ling and Lee in prison" no matter how many times you do it.

I wrote one thing, you've repeatedly now claimed I argued something significantly different. At this point it doesn't really matter whether you merely don't understand the difference or whether you're disingenuously pretending not to, as I've repeatedly made it quite clear that I was speaking to the consequences of a particular action, not the aggregate of John Bolton's inner wants and/or desires.

I've no problem taking responsibility for my arguments and my words. I also have no problem pointing out the differences between them and the transparently absurd strawmen you invent to argue against. And since you're now appealing to repetition, I'm comfortable with the readers of this exchange both being able to discern the difference between intent and consequence and recognize the pattern of strawman slaying that has come to characterize your contributions here and elsewhere on the net.

Maybe if you hit ctrl-c / ctrl-v a few more times, you might manage to convince yourself otherwise. Best of luck with that!

Patrick Ross said...

See, Audrey, this remains, and all along has been, a spectacularly poor argument.

Even if one accepted your excuse here -- personally, I don't, as you've proven over and over again that you cannot be trusted to accept responsibility for your own arguments -- one would still have to remind you that you read Bolton's intent into the consequences of him "having his way". In this case:

"...simply to satiate his PNAC fantasy of American-strength-through-non-diplomacy."

Now interestingly, you still refuse to address the matter of Bill Clinton wasting diplomatic time and resources on a regime that has proven itself to be utterly malfeasant in regards to diplomacy -- which actually the substance of Bolton's objection to Clinton's argument.

So which one of us is it again who's "staging show battles with windmills"?

Audrey II said...

I'm not making an excuse for anything, much less expecting you personally to accept one. I'm pointing out the difference between my argument and the one you've attempted repeatedly to put in my mouth.

I have no problem accepting responsibility for my own arguments, and attempting to frame your continued strawman slaying as some sort of responsibility or honesty problem for me is about as laughable as it gets. Again, I think that most following this exchange will not only be able to recognize the difference between intent and consequence (which you've tried desperately to conflate), but also the difference between my argument and you "Bolton wanted to see Ling and Lee in prison". I think it's quite clear who has been tilting at windmills here. The subsequent cut-and-paste appeal to repetition was just icing on the cake.

Yes, I think Bolton would like his desire to see a PNAC-oriented foreign policy that is marked by witholding diplomacy and an international version of grade school "I'm pretending you don't exist" antics, but his article and long history of advocating such things have said as much.

As it turns out, Clinton's efforts weren't a "wast of time and resources", as they secured the release of the journalists.

Patrick Ross said...

And yet, Audrey, your attempts to point out the alleged difference between your argument and the one I've allegedly "attempted repeatedly" to put into your mouth necessitates that one ignore the argument that you actually made.

Why is that?

I've quoted your argument repeatedly here. How, Audrey, is that "attempting repeatedly" to put it into your mouth? Where did the argument originate, Audrey? Whose words are these:

"If the former (Bush appointed) UN ambassador had had his way, Laura Ling and Euna Lee would still be sitting in a North Korean labour camp, simply to satiate his PNAC fantasy of American-strength-through-non-diplomacy."

You read his intentions directly into the alleged consequences of him "having his way". If you were conducting yourself under any pretense of honesty you wouldn't deny this. And yet you do.

Not only can you not speak with any kind of authority to Bolton's intentions, you can't speak with any kind of real authority to what would have happened if Bolton had "gotten his way".

And to top it all off, Audrey, that you would suggest that the release of these journalists is any kind of diplomatic triumph only speaks to your refusal to address North Korea's records in regards to diplomacy.

After all, the release of these journalists doesn't preclude the taking of future hostages, by North Korea or by any other state. Bolton may very well be right when he notes that Clinton's actions may embolden North Korea and other states to arraign American citizens injudiciously in order to wrest concessions out of the American government.

And considering that we still don't know what concessions have been made by Clinton to North Korea's chief nuclear negotiator, you can't even speak to the quality of the deal!

Not only is there no real substance to your criticism, Audrey -- surprise, surprise -- but you have to resort to making inflammatory accusations in order to make them appear as if they're substantive.

No one's shocked that you won't admit to any of this, or that you won't engage in a substantive debate of Bolton's criticisms. It would require far more honesty than you've shown yourself capable of.

Audrey II said...

You've demonstrated repeatedly that you can't even accurately summarize the argument that I've made, which makes your claim about ignoring it all the more laughable.

This bait and switch of yours from "wanted Ling and Lee in prison" to now Bolton's expressed wishes for a more PNAC-oriented foreign policy is a pretty transparent way of avoiding your disingenuous mischaracterization of my position. Bolton's foreign policy "wants" were explicitly stated in the article I referenced, at least with respect to actions like the ones Clinton took. Reference to these doesn't require a "psychic" act. He's put them on paper (both in the article and elsewhere) multiple times. But his desire for the realization of a particular approach to foreign policy isn't remotely the same thing as "John Bolton wanted Ling and Lee in prison", and to address the consequences of the former isn't by any reasonable stretch of the imagination claiming the latter.

It isn't "dishonest" to point out that "Wanted Ling and Lee in prison" are your words, not mine. It isn't "dishonest" to point out the difference between the argument you've attempted to put in my mouth and what I actually argued. It isn't "dishonest" to point out that cutting and pasting my words over and over again doesn't make them any less different than the argument you claimed I made. You're (again) using the term "dishonest" as a pejorative response to the drawing of attention to the inaccuracies of your claim.

I did make a substantive criticism of Bolton's position, namely the consequences that rejecting a particular set of circumstances out of hand can have. But instead of engaging it, you've (again) chosen to pen an umpteen-reply-long strawman massacre culminating with a baseless accusations of "dishonesty" for not ceding to your transparently absurd distortions.

You're right that few will likely be shocked at this exchange, as you've repeated these same rhetorical devices over and over again, not only here, but elsewhere in the blogosphere. Sorry, Pat. The jig is up.

Patrick Ross said...

See, Audrey, that's a lie and you know it.

You read Bolton's intentions into the alleged consequences of his stance. And you know it. You continue to lie about it, and this shocks nobody.

Just like, unshockingly, you don't want to talk about the facts of the overall matter.

You don't want to talk about North Korea's malfeasance in regards to diplomacy. You don't want to talk about the number of deals North Korea has broken. I won't even remind you that Clinton negotiated the release of Ling and Lee with North Korea's lead negotiator on matters regarding its nuclear program -- no one expects you to treat these matters honestly.

You made the claim that Bolton's criticisms were motivated by some of the lowliest political motivations imaginable. You can lie about it to your heart's content, but you know you did. Everyone else knows it, too.

It very much is dishonest to pretend that "Bolton wanted Ling and Lee to remain in prison" is a very accurate paraphrasal of your remarks here. It isn't shocking.

Your "substantive criticism" of Bolton's position has, all along, declined to address North Korea's malfeasant record in regard to diplomacy -- making deals in regard to their nuclear program, then breaking them. Repeatedly.

Unshockingly, you're dancing around that particular issue with a rather amusing desperation -- because you know it unravels the closest thing to a substantive criticism that you've offered.

Frankly, you have to be the only person in the entire Canadian blogosphere who believes that three paragraphs of indefensible drivel amounts to a substantive criticism.

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