To expand on something Digby’s getting at:

The Bush administration are monsters. That is not hyperbole. There can be no other explanation as to why the secretary of state, the person in charge of American diplomacy, would be so crude and stupid.

The level of their disinterest in any kind of substantive policy beyond “Oh, just cut it the fuck out and listen to us because we’ve got your best interests at heart and to prove it, we’re gonna blow you up” is not actually all that sobering if you realize that it’s not a lack of any kind.

It’s not that they don’t get it. It’s not even that they miss the capacity to get it. It’s that they don’t want to get it, and what’s more, they don’t have to.

They were never really all that interested in solving the world’s problems. This is a group of people elected in 2000 on the basis of being completely disinterested in solving the world’s problems and even after 2001, they weren’t so much interested in solving anybody’s problems so much as they wanted to work out a nation’s need for catharsis on a global scale while making campaign commercials in their spare time. It’s what they’re best at, telling you who to blame and who to elect, so they do what they’re good at and fry the rest of it.

It’s not that they don’t know something or that the crucial book is missing from the library and if only they could lay their hands on the right tools to solve the crossword puzzle. They don’t really give a shit, and can you blame them? If your kink is instant gratification, foreign policy is not really all that rewarding. You can’t just write up a pretty little design and have it happen exactly that way; Iraq proved that. Human nature, for which we never seem to account when planning invasions and occupations, cocked all that up, and since the Iraqis have proven themselves so staggeringly ungrateful for our benevolence, why get all worked up about hearts and minds this time? It hasn’t paid shit’s worth of dividends so far. Screw it.

This isn’t a shortcoming. Not to them, not to their supporters, to whom war is nothing more than a backdrop for their own pathetic need of a storyline. (Jesus, that woman’s blog scares the shit out of me. “Western Civilization hangs in the balance?” “Join the Great Fight?” In some ways, thank God these people have a president who feeds them the validation they need so badly, because otherwise God only knows what they’d latch onto to give meaning to their days.) What consequences has this administration ever faced for anything it’s done or not done? Why should they see anything they’ve done as a mistake? Certainly no one’s forcing them to any kind of comeuppance, so why should they put themselves out?

Much easier just to make something explode, and then chide Democrats for not bringing enough marshmallows to roast over the fire.