"It still smells of sulphur, but God is with us."

|

That's the last line of Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez's speech yesterday at the United Nations. Elsewhere in his talk, Chavez

drew laughs and gasps at the UN yesterday by mocking President Bush as "the Devil himself" who acts like "he owned the world."

Chavez's taunts came a day after Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad railed against Bush—but the Iranian was downright diplomatic compared with Chavez.

"Yesterday, the Devil came here. Right here. Right here. And it smells of sulfur still today," Chavez said, blessing himself with the sign of the cross, and folding his hands as if in prayer and glancing heavenward.

UN Amb. John Bolton was nonplussed by it all:

"The real issue here is he knows he can exercise freedom of speech on that podium, and as I say, he could exercise it in Central Park, too," Bolton said. "How about giving the same freedom to the people of Venezuela?"

Whole bit here.

Reason on Chavez here and on Latin America's false "red dawn" here.

NEXT: The 50 Habits of Highly Effective Revolutionaries

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Chavez is like that bratty little brother who squats on the sidelines and resents the fact that he will never be able to play with the big boys.

    And the U.N. claps and cheers what he says, which is par for the course. They are just as irrelevant as he is.

    Insolence and whining of children.

  2. That’s not what nonplussed means.

  3. Hugo Chavez: The “Joe Besser” of modern thugocrats.

    For non-Three Stooges fans: Besser was a wuss who wouldn’t take a pie in the face.

  4. Hey, he can’t say that about our President…only we can say that about our President!

  5. It was just a temper tantrum over not getting a spot on the Security Council. Mexico came out this week in support of Guatamala getting Latin America’s rotating seat on the council. Even Latin America is growing tired of his schtick. They may not like Bush and may love to bash the Yankee when it is convienent but no one wants to join Chavez Fidel axis of morons.

  6. What a goober. Good for Bolton for that quip.

    The sooner the Venezuelans catch onto Chavez and vote him out, the better.

  7. If he could come up with speeches as entertaining as this one, I say more power to him. When was the last time Lula or Bachelet said something so colorful?

  8. Give credit where it’s due. That bit about sulfur was a pretty good line.

  9. Chavez’s verbal stunts and rogue state photo op tour should be beneath our government’s acknowledgement. An offhanded zinger like Bolton’s, followed up with, “That’s really not something we’re concerned about” is all the attention he should get from us. He’s a five year old yelling swears on the playground – please, neocons, don’t do anything stupid and turn into a hero.

  10. Give credit where it’s due. That bit about sulfur was a pretty good line.

    Yeah, I smiled at that one.

    Apparently they loved him at Cooper Union. He got a standing ovation when he spoke there.

  11. What Bolton really said:

    “The real issue here is he knows he can exercise freedom of speech on that podium, and as I say, he could exercise it in Central Park, too, as long as he is in an approved free speech zone 500 yards away from the President and obeys the police who are enforcing it.”

  12. To give credit where credit is due, Bolton nailed it.

    Anderson Cooper also nailed it last night. He asked Ahmadinejad some questions that the guy obviously didn’t like. Ahmadinejad asked “Is somebody telling you to ask me these questions?” and Cooper said “No, in America we have a free press, unlike in Iran.”

  13. Anderson Cooper also nailed it last night. He asked Ahmadinejad some questions that the guy obviously didn’t like. Ahmadinejad asked “Is somebody telling you to ask me these questions?” and Cooper said “No, in America we have a free press, unlike in Iran.”

    Uh, had Cooper been honest he would have said, “Of course, who do you think signs my paychecks?”

  14. Dan, you forgot to add he would need a permit from the city to do so.

    I’m thinking the guy did us a favor. The Iranian Prez’s speech was pretty good. He made a good case for freedom, freedom for a country to pursue any technology that country desires (which is what we do), and freedom to prosper without daddy USA telling the world what it can and can not do.
    Very valid points, but then the UN gets the devil speech. That pulled attention away from what the Iranian Prez said.

    When you think anti-US speeches from this UN meeting, you won’t remember the vaild points from the Iranian Prez but the nutty, over the top Chavez rant.

  15. I think Chavez is pathetic. Running around the world, trying to look important by throwing oil money around and denouncing the U.S. Maybe he should spend a few moments worrying about Venezuela. What amazes me is that he thinks he is going to be the center of an anti-U.S. coalition. Ha!

    I’m with joe–I hope the guy gets booted and that Venezuela can get someone slightly less interested in self-aggrandizement. I don’t foresee any U.S. action against Venezuela for a bunch of talk, in any event. Even Chavez knows where all the money is coming from to finance his jet-set ways, which places a definite limit on how far he’ll go. It also prevents any coup attempts by him if he gets ousted and refuses to leave, because we might very well intervene in that case.

  16. Yeah, the smells like sulfur line was okay, but if he really was looking for a laugh, we would have said it still smells like Egg Farts.

  17. joe:

    You are dead-on about some neocons wasting froth on this clown. I’ve read some idiotic assertions that “we” should assassinate the creep, which would ironically give him the relevancy that he so desperately craves.

    But Chavez is already a “hero” to many of the leftists in this country, including the mother of them all:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10704025

  18. “””Yeah, the smells like sulfur line was okay, but if he really was looking for a laugh, we would have said it still smells like Egg Farts.”””

    And blamed on someone in the front row

  19. I thought the real laugh line was this, from the New York Times report:

    “But compared with Mr. Ahmadinejad, Mr. Ch?vez was just more colorful. He brandished a copy of Noam Chomsky?s ?Hegemony or Survival: America?s Quest for Global Dominance? and recommended it to members of the General Assembly to read. Later, he told a news conference that one of his greatest regrets was not getting to meet Mr. Chomsky before he died. (Mr. Chomsky, 77, is still alive.)”

  20. Chavez sounded a lot like a high school social reject who somehow got access to a microphone at an assembly.

    And I’m all for Ahmadinejad praising freedom. The only problem is that he’s just like the pro-confederacy people or the religious cultists who praise freedom who claim the freedom to limit others’ freedom.

  21. On a side note, what percentage of the H&R commenters are out-of-control Bush-haters? There seem to be several, and I’m wondering how cool it is on H&R to roll in the Bush-hate much like a dog rolls in his own feces.

    (Note to Bush-haters: the only part of Bush policy that I approve of is the tax cuts. Everything else I oppose. This is written in vain attempt to forestall accusations that I “worship” Bush.)

  22. Aside from the above average imagery, how do illogical populist rhetoric and spending somebody else’s money to buy votes distinguish Chavez from any other politician?

    [ps- thanks, jf]

  23. Loundry

    ?

    I’ve reread every comment on this string & can’t find one that really qualifies as ‘Bush-bashing’.

    Dan T’s comments might be construed that way by an extreme fan of President Bush, but that’s a stretch.

  24. Aresen wrote:

    “I’ve reread every comment on this string & can’t find one that really qualifies as ‘Bush-bashing’.”

    Just because this thread doesn’t have one that qualifies does not mean that there haven’t been others. I have seen them before.

    I would hope that a group of folks that values reason and evidence over partisanship and hatred would be free of the retarded Bush-hate that falls mindlessly out of a “progressive” zealot, but we aren’t. I’m just trying to gague how popular they are over here.

  25. I agree with Aresen.

    I reread the thread myself and found nothing that could be construed as Bush hating.

    There are some people that are hyper-sensitive about this.

    Any negative government talk = negative Bush talk.

    Maybe Loundry is referring to other threads?

  26. I’m pretty sure that my comment about hoping the neocons don’t do anything stupid qualifies as feces-rolling, out-of-control Bush bashing to the True Believers.

  27. One calls his opponent the Devil, while the other calls his opponent “Evil”.

    Both seem pretty freaking idiotic to me. But then again both have had some success riling up the idiots in their electorate so perhaps it’s pure genius?

  28. TrickyVic wrote:

    “Maybe Loundry is referring to other threads?”

    Yes, for fuck’s sake! Read what I wrote:

    “On a side note, what percentage of the H&R commenters are out-of-control Bush-haters?”

    I did NOT ask, “What percentage of the commenters in this thread”, but “What percentage of the H&R commenters”.

  29. and I’m wondering how cool it is on H&R to roll in the Bush-hate much like a dog rolls in his own feces.

    Err.. speaking of idiotic..

    Are you trying to give Hugo a run for his money?

  30. Loundry,
    People on the right hate the President because he has sold out much of his own support base. He’s exploded the budget, started an unnecessary war, spread American power thin, and curtailed our rights to free speech and privacy. Out of the various brands of conservatism, the only one he has in his corner is the religious wackjobs. He alienated fiscal conservatives by spending like a Kennedy. He alienated libertarians and businessmen by starting an unnecessary war. He alienated military types by hyping the war then changing his rationale over and over, and finally by Swiftboating his political enemies. Then he alienated all but the people who are afraid of their own shadows by implementing a system of spying on Americans without warrants. Throughout all this, he’s been a smug, arrogant and naive man. Thus, the left hates Bush for obvious reasons. The right has come to hate Bush because he sold them out. I personally can’t stand George W. Bush (and the Santorum wing of the party), but I hope I will someday be able to vote for a real conservative again.

  31. Err.. speaking of idiotic.. Are you trying to give Hugo a run for his money?

    It is neither a sign of intelligence nor a work of insightful discourse to both call your opponent an idiot and simultanesouly excuse hatred while adding nothing else of value. Perhaps you feel a little miffed at my characterization. Why is that?

  32. Seriously Loundry, you are talking about “out of control Bush haters” yet you’ve got a fairly short fuse yourself wouldn’t you say for fuck’s sake!?

    Give us a break with the “rolling in feces” metaphors OK. Because fankly the only “out of control” commenter on this thread is you.

  33. Oh, they know how to dispose of the “haters” around here, make no mistake. This is not a free speech zone.

    Get your licks in while you can, Dan T. Some of us are enjoying your wonderful and witty perspective. This is likely to be your last warning.

  34. Loundry’s comment posted before mine. My question is answered.

    “””I’m just trying to gague how popular they are over here.””””

    Why are you so concerned where the Bush haters post? Your posts are a little one-sided in that you don’t like “retarded Bush haters” I can respect no one liking Bush haters but to call them retarded is false, unreasonable, and biased. How do you communicate your problems with Bush’s policy, since you don’t like any of them, minus tax reform, without being labeled a Bush hater?

    You and I might be in the same boat in that we share the desire to find a messageboard void of the usual idiots. That is why I post here and not AOL or Yahoo. But not only did I want to get away from the “retarded Bush haters” I also wanted to get away from the, to use one of your words, “retarded” Bush lovers too.

    My experience here has been great, we don’t all agree, of course. And, from time to time there maybe a dogpile on Joe or John, (somehow I’ve managed to escape being under one) the usual cast of characters are very reasonable.

    While the server squarrels are in action I check to see if this comment posted which it did not. So I have the opprotunity to add this.

    “””TrickyVic wrote:

    “Maybe Loundry is referring to other threads?”

    Yes, for fuck’s sake! Read what I wrote:””””

    For fuck sake??? Your are not aware that many times one comment will get posted before one being written by someone else.

    I’m starting to think I’m giving you more benefit in the begining of this post than you deserve.

  35. Oh, they know how to dispose of the “haters” around here, make no mistake. This is not a free speech zone.

    Get your licks in while you can, Dan T. Some of us are enjoying your wonderful and witty perspective. This is likely to be your last warning.

  36. As a general rule, I hate presidents / vice presidents who advocate and perform torture, imprison people indefinately without trial or recourse, openly flout the Fourth Amendment, equate dissent with treason, and squander liberty for the illusion of security.

    I don’t hate presidents who advocate voluntary foreign misadventures against enemies who are not an existential threat to us (and who had not attacked us), but I hate the Congress that permitted that sorry state to occur. That it wrecked the pointy end of the Army and the Marine Corps for the near future is a god damned disgrace and potential disaster.

    But that’s just me. That’s the way I roll.

  37. As a general rule, I hate presidents / vice presidents who advocate and perform torture, imprison people indefinately without trial or recourse, openly flout the Fourth Amendment, equate dissent with treason, and squander liberty for the illusion of security.

    I don’t hate presidents who advocate voluntary foreign misadventures against enemies who are not an existential threat to us (and who had not attacked us), but I hate the Congress that permitted that sorry state to occur. That it wrecked the pointy end of the Army and the Marine Corps for the near future is a god damned disgrace and potential disaster.

    But that’s just me. That’s the way I roll.

  38. Lamar wrote:

    “People on the right hate the Pres–”

    Yes, I am aware of all the reasons to dislike Bush. He and the NeoCons have betrayed the conservative legacy to an equal degree that the “progressives” have betrayed the liberal legacy. My question was concerning the mindless Bush-hate that has become part and parcel of the “progressive” platform and its prevalence on this message board.

  39. Tricky Vic wrote:

    “Why are you so concerned where the Bush haters post? Your posts are a little one-sided in that you don’t like ‘retarded Bush haters'”

    They only seem that way because I have never seen a retarded Bush lover in this forum. I don’t see any reason to question the presence of people who aren’t actually here!

    Tricky Vic wrote:

    “How do you communicate your problems with Bush’s policy, since you don’t like any of them, minus tax reform, without being labeled a Bush hater?”

    I don’t have any control over the way that people label me. Since I don’t hate Bush, many people (guess who?) choose to label me as a “Bush lover” since their supreme command of nuance fails them when it comes to most issues. It’s either black-or-white with them.

    Tricky Vic wrote:

    “You and I might be in the same boat in that we share the desire to find a messageboard void of the usual idiots. That is why I post here and not AOL or Yahoo. But not only did I want to get away from the ‘retarded Bush haters’ I also wanted to get away from the, to use one of your words, ‘retarded’ Bush lovers too.”

    You and I are in the same boat. The problem I see is that while this forum seems to be blissfully Bush-worshipper-free, it does, unfortunately, seem tainted by the foul stench of mindless Bush-hate. My whole question is about how deep the problem is.

    Tricky Vic wrote:

    “Your are not aware that many times one comment will get posted before one being written by someone else.”

    I am aware of that. The issue is not the order in which things are posted, but rather my frustration at some folks’ choice to interpret what I wrote too narrowly. I shouldn’t have lost my cool, and I apologize.

  40. Davebo wrote:

    “Seriously Loundry, you are talking about ‘out of control Bush haters’ yet you’ve got a fairly short fuse yourself wouldn’t you say for fuck’s sake!?”

    Yeah, I lost my cool. I apologize.

    Davebo wrote:

    “Give us a break with the ‘rolling in feces’ metaphors OK.”

    I refuse, for I think Bush-haters deserve every bit of disdain and ridicule I have to offer for their vile behavior. They are more zealous, more hateful, and more shrill than the worst of the Christian fundamentalists. They spew hate and they enjoy it. The most egregious quality of their heinous choices is the fact that this is the exact same group that used to rail against “hate speech” in the 90s. And yet, now, they engage in this very same “hate speech” with aplomb. They are a disgrace.

    davebo wrote:

    “Because fankly the only ‘out of control’ commenter on this thread is you.”

    As my attitude improves, perhaps yours will as well. Care to join me in dialogue?

  41. Loundry, if you are aware of reasons to dislike Bush, Why are you so against those who do?

    So far you have used the words “retarded” and “mindless” to describe them. That says something about YOU, not THEM.

    “”He and the NeoCons have betrayed the conservative legacy to an equal degree that the “progressives” have betrayed the liberal legacy.”””

    I’m not sure what legacys you speak of. I think you are referring to myths. Certainly so if your speaking of fiscal responsibility and small government. You never get to prove who you are until your in power. What conservative didn’t spend like a drunk sailor or expand government when in power. As for the liberals, the only “legacy” I’m aware of it that they like to expand the nanny state and spend like a drunken sailor. That, I don’t think they have betrayed.

    The lesson from the 1994 rise of Republican power is that it does not matter which party you belong to, when you get the power of the purse, you spend like a drunk sailor, when you get the power to expand the reach of your power, you do so.

    “””My question was concerning the mindless Bush-hate that has become part and parcel of the “progressive” platform and its prevalence on this message board.”””

    Again, why do you really care about the prevalence on this message board?

    By the way I would like to see some examples of the “mindless” and “retarded” Bush hate you speak of.

    If one can logically draw an anti-bush position would you agree that it’s NOT mindless NOR retarded?

  42. *AHEM*

    To return to the original subject:

    Chavez will have a populist support base at home as long as he has easy oil money. Once that flow trickles out, then he will probably be unable to maintain that support. I expect he will then turn to ever-more dictatorial measures.

    The leftists will love him as long as he can pose as an anti-American ‘fighter’.

    The nastiest thing the US could do to him is be nice to him. Smiles and kisses and hugs. Find a reason to praise him, however minor.

    It would drive Chavez [and the leftists] crazy.[-ier]

  43. Loundry,

    The discourse in this thread was perfectly reasonable (and for the most part is such within H&R, IMHO), before you showed up.

    I’m sorry there is not enough diversity for you on the issue of Bush’s success as president. In case you didn’t notice, this is a libertarian website, which tends to attract people who have libertarian leanings (at least to some degree). Someone who has acted as Bush has since taking office is not likely to draw a lot of support from those his policies differ from.

    Of course there are posters with differing opinions and we welcome constructive debate, I’m just not sure where all your indignation comes from. I haven’t seen this hate-speak you’re refering to, except maybe in some tongue-in-cheek comments here and there.

  44. As my attitude improves, perhaps yours will as well. Care to join me in dialogue?

    Nah, I can’t help feeling you’ve gratuitously insulted my dog for reasons I can’t fathom.

    If you’re a vile Beaux Thibideaux hater I really have no use for you.

    :0)

  45. “My experience here has been great, we don’t all agree, of course. And, from time to time there maybe a dogpile on Joe or John, (somehow I’ve managed to escape being under one) the usual cast of characters are very reasonable.”

    Dog pile on me Tricky Vic? Never!! I have gotten Joe Jennifer so mad on here a few times I think I may have taken a few years off of their lives. Generally this place is pretty high on the food chain as comment threads go. I am in the minority on the Iraq war but it is not a minority of one. I can’t think of any issue other than maybe the drug war where it is an echo chamber. The worst things written on here are better than the best things written in the fever swamps over at the DU and Kos and the like.

  46. Nah, I can’t help feeling you’ve gratuitously insulted my dog for reasons I can’t fathom.

    I’ll be waiting for the moment when you feel you have the strength to stop whining, at which point we can resume the conversation.

  47. That’s not what nonplussed means.

    Oh, snap!

    It must feel good to correct the vocabulary usage of English PhD, current editor. 🙂

    To be fair, thats one of those damn words that I’d guess the majority of the world uses incorrectly. Maybe, like what happened with “transpire” in the 18th century, one day they’ll just change the dictionary rather than try and educate people.

    JG

  48. GILMORE,

    You caught me. At least a healthy debate of the meaning of “nonplussed” might have been more productive than the wacky left turn this thread ended up taking.

    And of course it’s a lost cause. Just like “ironic” and my all-time favorite, “I could care less.”

  49. Sometimes the constant abuse of the language literally makes my head explode.

  50. “”I am aware of that. The issue is not the order in which things are posted, but rather my frustration at some folks’ choice to interpret what I wrote too narrowly. I shouldn’t have lost my cool, and I apologize.”””

    Well, apology accepted. But I’m still wonder why you hate Bush haters? If you want to claim that you hate, haters. (I know that sounds funny) I could understand that. But so far you have only commented about the anti-Bush crowd.

    How do you feel about the liberal haters such as Ann Coulter and most of the rightwing pundits? And of course many of the leftwing pundits are haters too.

    I know you claim to speak only about this board, but the problem I have with that is none of the regulars use “vile”, “retarded”, or any other of the strong words you use, in their post.

    I would still like for you to show me a post on this site, by a regular, that fits any of those descriptions. I say regular because from time to time we get a one off post by some hater. We can’t help that.

    I know you said you have found no retarded Bush lovers on this board but I’m sure you have encounter them else where, no? And as it was pointed out in a prior post, you’re not going to find any Bush lovers on a Libertarian site.

    It’s easy to Ass-U-Me that someone hates Bush because they hate his policies. What criteria do you use to sort out the policy haters away from the Bush haters?

    In sticking to the thread, we all know Chavez is a Bush hater not a Bush policy hater.

    “””The nastiest thing the US could do to him is be nice to him. Smiles and kisses and hugs. Find a reason to praise him, however minor.”””

    I agree, the leftist would start to question his loyalty to their anti-bush cause.

  51. Chavez is a clown to be sure, but for anyone who got excited because they thought Bolton nailed him in his response, I have a question: does anyone think that Bolton is any less of a “comic strip” character than Chavez?

    Davebo nailed it when he said:

    “Both [sides] seem pretty freaking idiotic to me.”

  52. one douchbag calling another douchbag a douchbag. Hey, I’m appalled…..I’m talking about Ohio’s Senator Voinivich’s remarks about the elected president of Iran

    howcum no mention of the coup that removed the twice elected Chavez in 2002? Wasn’t Clinton president then?

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,,685125,00.html

  53. Jf,

    Pedants who have a problem with “I could care less” do not understand the construction. It is a truncated version of “I could care less… but I don’t.” Like all frequently used constructions, over time it has been reduced in complexity to the point that its original form is obscure.

    Nyah nyah nyah…

  54. another story about the coup to remove the twice elected Chavez……http://observer.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,6903,688071,00.html

  55. I’m pretty sure that my comment about hoping the neocons don’t do anything stupid qualifies as feces-rolling, out-of-control Bush bashing to the True Believers.

    bah…whatever joe, i am just glad that once in awhile you actually show yourself to be a liberal rather then simply “left”.

  56. conversely, the true Bush believers are hopeing the neocons do something stupid? Is that right?

  57. howcum no mention of the coup that removed the twice elected Chavez in 2002? Wasn’t Clinton president then?

    That’s a joke, right?

  58. iust keeping in the spirit of this blog…….not Hit and Run but Pass the Buck

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.