Thursday, February 26, 2009

Eliminationist joke gets big laughs at CPAC

From Mother Jones

Appearing at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), the nation's largest annual conference of conservative activists, [John] Bolton, one of the hardest hardliners of the George W. Bush administration, spoke at length about Obama's naivet̩ and how various nations РRussia, North Korea, Iran Рwill be exploiting the new president. The most dramatic moment of his speech may have been when he cracked a joke about the nuking of Obama's hometown.

"The fact is on foreign policy I don't think President Obama thinks it's a priority," said Bolton. "He said during the campaign he thought Iran was a tiny threat. Tiny, tiny depending on how many nuclear weapons they are ultimately able to deliver on target. Its, uh, its tiny compared to the Soviet Union, but is the loss of one American city" – here Bolton shrugged his shoulders impishly – "pick one at random – Chicago – is that a tiny threat?"

Bolton wasn't the only one who thought this was funny. The room erupted in laughter and applause. Was this conservative catharsis, with rightwingers delightfully imagining the destruction of a city that represents Obama? Or perhaps they were venting vengeance with their laughter. (Bolton is no stranger to inflammatory remarks. He once infamously quipped, "There are 38 floors to the UN building in New York. If you lost 10 of them, it wouldn't make a bit of difference.")


Bolton received a standing ovation and got off to a fast start, declaring that "President Obama is the most radical president we have ever elected in this country." In Bolton's world, Obama's radicalism is matched only by his lack of backbone. The new president, he warned, simply doesn't have what it takes to go head to head with the world's baddest bad actors. And Obama's pusillanimous posture, Bolton predicted, will result in [America becoming] a "weaker and less safe nation."
Ah, yes. Nothing funnier than eliminationist fantasy combined with dolchstoss demagoguery.

During a Q & A segment, Bolton was asked if Americans will stage a "revolt" against Obama. The article does not recount his answer.

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