In secretly taped conversations in 1998 and 1999, President Bush admitted to deliberately “stoned-walling” the press about his past drug use during the 2000 election.

Quote: “I wouldn’t answer the marijuana questions. You know why? Because I don’t want some little kid doing what I tried.” Instead Bush used “code words” about his “wild past” to appeal to the Christian Right as a sinner who had been saved.

If George Bush is the Cheech Marin of turning past vices into present virtues, then John Negroponte is Tommy Chong. While ambassador to Honduras, Negroponte was involved in Iran/Contra, misled Congress about Honduras’ human rights record, and denied the existence of CIA-trained death squads which, in fact, were then hunting down, torturing, and killing suspected subversives.

But Negroponte’s resume doesn’t stop there. He was ambassador to the United Nations, when Colin Powell presented false WMD intelligence to the Security Council. And finally, if more proof is needed that he is the last person in the world you want to hear the United States has assigned to be ambassador to your country, Negroponte’s most recent posting was Iraq.

So let’s see, covert torture operations, involvement with Iran/Contra, failed nation building, and a history of lying to the press and Congress–sounds like the perfect man with the perfect qualifications for the job of Bush’s National Intelligence Director.