And despite the fact that it would have been nice if Bush had appointed someone whose goal it was to work with the world to, um, work with the world, if it means that Bolton won't be able to pursue his and the administration's agenda to further isolate America, that may not be such a bad thing. A wash, as it were.
Point is not to diss Kerry; a good number of Democrats are guilty of this hemming and hedging. The point is that it's not only ethically bankrupt to avoid firm, or overly compromising positions, it's bad strategy. With their opposition to Bolton the Democrats are beginning to see the value in not compromising, in taking a stance and fighting for it.
Never mind that Bolton was confirmed ... for now, anyway. Despite administration cries that a permanent presence is necessary in that position, Bolton's one and a half year tenure makes him the substitute teacher of UN ambassadors.
In the long run the Republican machinery has a strategy for branding the Democrats and its adherents will swallow it. It doesn't much matter what the Dems do, the strategy isn't going to shift much. But maybe the Dems need to go back and get some of that good old fashioned schoolyard wisdom. If they call you a sissy for playing the violin, giving up the violin will not make the other kids think you're cool. Walk over to the one calling you a sissy, look 'em in the eye and play a kickass version of "The Devil Went Down to Georgia." They still may not like the violin but they will respect you.
They'll respect you a Hell of a lot more if you set down the fiddle and then play a real "kickass version". On them.