Four More Years

AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

Ed and David have already commented about Biden's debate performance last night so there's really no need for another long-winded post saying the same thing.

Except I need it. I need to vent about this because I'm angry about it. I'm angry at everyone in the White House who knew what shape Biden was actually in, probably for many months now and just flat out lied about it. 

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It's so clear now that they lied to all of us. There's no way that the performance we saw last night on stage just snuck up on anyone. His team spent a week prepping him for last night. They must have seen indications every single day that he was not up to it, but they just kept lying and hoping by some miracle he could pull it off for 90 minutes the way he did during the State of the Union.

But obviously that bet didn't work out. Instead of an old guy shouting out a rehearsed speech, we got an old guy who was barely able to form coherent sentences. For me, this moment below, which happened pretty early, was the key moment of the debate. I actually rewound the broadcast on my DVR when this happened and showed it to my wife and daughter who had been in another room. They had to look away. It was literally painful for them to watch, not because they love Joe Biden but because no one can really take joy in seeing something like this.

So, yes, I'm angry because there is a 0.0 percent chance that people around Biden haven't seen this before. They knew and yet they spent the first half of this month pushing out talking points to the media about "cheap fakes." And that brings me to the media's role in this.

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"Seeing is believing? Not necessarily when it comes to video clips of Biden and Trump" one representative AP article on this topic was headlined. Some of the more aggressive lickspittles in the media were helping the White House directly attack and mock critics.

While not directly calling out Fox News, the White House continued to rage against the network’s sister paper and conservative media as a whole in a statement to The Daily Beast on Tuesday.

“It’s telling that rightwing critics, including Rupert Murdoch’s sad little super PAC, the New York Post, resort to misinformation and cheap fakes because President Biden’s performance in office – fueling the strongest economic growth in the world, bringing violent crime to historic lows, and advancing our national security in the world – is so threatening to them that they feel a need to make things up,” White House Senior Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates said.

One week ago, I wrote a post attacking the "cheap fakes" cottage industry that had suddenly sprung up in the media. I specifically called out the NY Times, the AP and the Washington Post for treating White House manufactured talking points like news. The national media was almost literally demanding that people not believe their own eyes, but as I tried to point out you only had to watch the clips to see what was happening. Biden was being dragged around on various stages because the people closest to him were uncomfortable and wanted to rescue him from the awkwardness of advanced age.

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I don't expect honestly from the White House but the media is supposed to be skeptical and speak truth to power. In this case they were doing anything but that. They made fools of themselves, going all in on a lie about Joe Biden that couldn't sustain itself for even one month.

When it became clear that lie wouldn't hold last night, I watched a whole parade of Democrats suddenly willing to state the obvious. It was shocking to behold.

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This is the one that really shocked me the most. The leader of the Obama media echo-chamber on Iran tells Democrats lying won't work this time.

I think that's what they call an evergreen tweet. I expect to pull that one out from time to time over the next few years.

As all of the rats were lining up to leave the sinking ship last night, the enormity of these lies really struck me. Biden's people weren't just claiming he was okay when he clearly was not. That would have been bad enough even if he had long ago decided not to run again this fall. 

What's truly awful and unforgiveable here is that they were claiming he had another four years left in him. This tweet from Ian Bremmer really summed it up.

Four more years.

Four more years with last night's performance as the baseline, knowing for certain that it would get worse from there.

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Four more years of keeping Biden out of sight as much as possible to hide the decline.

Four more years that could end abruptly in some sort of medical or national crisis for the whole country. 

Four more years where our enemies abroad would seek to take advantage.

That's what they tried to saddle the entire country with. 

And when I say they I mean the White House in general but especially Andrew Bates and Ben LaBolt and Anita Dunn and Karine Jean-Pierre and all of the rest of the communications people who kept Biden away from media interviews because they knew the truth. These people deserve to be publicly shamed. And the media too because they were talking about this amongst themselves but, for the most part, refused to tell Americans the unvarnished truth. Though there were exceptions to the rule and they got beaten up publicly for it.

Let's be real. There is no universe in which Joe Biden can do this for four more years. There never was. They must have known that but maybe they decided this course of action was the only way to get President Kamala Harris. I wonder if they actually had a conversation about that or just knew it in the back of their minds.

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Anyway, this was the biggest lie of this election cycle. Last night that lie fell apart in spectacular fashion. I'm relieved but I'm also pretty angry about it. It really shouldn't be an uphill battle to get people to believe their own eyes. Once again, it matters that the entire national media leans heavily to the left. This is exhibit A in why ideological diversity is the most important kind, especially when it comes to the media.

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John Stossel 5:30 PM | July 13, 2024
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