This video is hamming it up a bit by using footage of ladies who have obviously not been properly familiarized with how to hold or use those shotguns, but it certainly delivers an effective rebuttal to the Vice President. Obviously, not every woman who one day finds herself needing to defend herself and her home is going to have previously acquired good shotgun handling skills.
Joe Biden’s histrionic performance last night, consisting of mugging, smirking, sneering, laughing, muttering No!, interrupting, and continually visually manifesting condescension, contempt, and his disagreement with, and dissent from, Paul Ryan’s statements and position in the debate has provoked much criticism and, most interestingly, comparison with another Vice President, Al Gore’s, disastrous debate performance in 2000.
Toby Harnden, of Britain’s Daily Mail, was one of many viewers who detected the presence of a ghost.
[The] Ghost of an over-confident Al Gore will haunt smirking Vice President Joe Biden who tried too hard to make up for his boss’ weakness . . . and was caught fibbing about the U.S. intelligence community.
Joe Biden came out swinging at Paul Ryan, flailing wildly and landing a few punches on his own jaw as well as his opponent’s.
He showed the kind of spirit and populist anger that President Barack Obama was so conspicuously lacking and has cheered up many demoralised Democrats.
But Biden’s performance here in Danville, Kentucky was both comical and self-defeating. Just as Al Gore sighed and rolled his eyes in 2000, so Biden smirked and guffawed.
His brief was to show the aggression that Obama so obviously lacked when the President went up against Mitt Romney last week. But as the dust settles today many will be left feeling that he went too far, tried too hard.
Many women and swing voters will have hated his condescending, swaggering display.
Perhaps the even bigger problem the Obama campaign will have in the coming days is that Biden, again just like Gore in 2000, repeatedly exaggerated and mischaracterised for effect.
And worse than Gore – who was caught in a series of small lies in 2000 – Biden was demonstrably untruthful in some big respects.
The RNC has already produced a campaign ad devoted to Biden’s derisive laughing. But the Daily Mail video clip was longer:
The comparison with Al Gore’s smirking in the 2000 presidential debate with George W. Bush occurred to me as well, and I was sitting here wondering why it is that experienced professional politicians would make such an obvious blunder as to over-act so much during a debate that they injured their own performances and credibility. How could they both be so naive? I asked myself. Where does this impulse to so much dramaturgy come from?
And, as I thought about it, it came to me. They are lying. They know that they are lying, and they are internally ill-at-ease because they know that they have nothing to offer but hot air. They are overacting because they are trying so hard to pretend, to pretend that it is all for real, that they believe in what they are saying. But they don’t actually, in their heart of hearts, really believe in the lines of guff that they are spinning, so they huff and they puff and they make faces at their opponents, desperately trying to persuade the audience of viewers to share their contemptuous dismissal of their miserable and unworthy opponents who dare to challenge the great and magnificent Oz!
To pull this kind of thing off, you have to be incredibly talented at dissimulation, at pure acting, Gore and Biden are just not that talented, and as a result, they come across as over-acting hams. They cannot really conceal their own insincerity. To succeed at this kind of thing on this level of stage, you need to be Bill Clinton, and only one Bill Clinton comes along every century or two.
Amusingly, partisan commentators from both sides are claiming victory. So the way to tell who really won is to check what the kind of commentator who can be counted to be found jumping on the winning bandwagon is saying. Let’s look at Peggy Noonan’s analysis:
There were fireworks all the way, and plenty of drama. Each candidate could claim a win in one area or another, but by the end it looked to me like this: For the second time in two weeks, the Democrat came out and defeated himself. In both cases the Republican was strong and the Democrat somewhat disturbing.
Another way to say it is the old man tried to patronize the kid and the kid stood his ground. The old man pushed, and the kid pushed back.
Last week Mr. Obama was weirdly passive. Last night Mr. Biden was weirdly aggressive, if that is the right word for someone who grimaces, laughs derisively, interrupts, hectors, rolls his eyes, browbeats and attempts to bully. He meant to dominate, to seem strong and no-nonsense. Sometimes he did—he had his moments. But he was also disrespectful and full of bluster. “Oh, now you’re Jack Kennedy!” he snapped at one point. It was an echo of Lloyd Bentsen to Dan Quayle, in 1988. But Mr. Quayle, who had compared himself to Kennedy, had invited the insult. Mr. Ryan had not. It came from nowhere. Did Mr. Biden look good? No, he looked mean and second-rate. He meant to undercut Mr. Ryan, but he undercut himself. His grimaces and laughter were reminiscent of Al Gore’s sighs in 2000—theatrical, off-putting and in the end self-indicting.
Mr. Ryan was generally earnest, fluid, somewhat wonky, confident. He occasionally teetered on the edge of glibness and sometimes fell off. ...
I have just realized the problem with the debate: it was the weird distance between style and content, and the degree to which Mr. Biden’s style poisoned his content.
In terms of content—the seriousness and strength of one’s positions and the ability to argue for them—the debate was probably a draw, with both candidates having strong moments. But in terms of style, Mr. Biden was so childishly manipulative that it will be surprising if independents and undecideds liked what they saw.
National Democrats keep confusing strength with aggression and command with sarcasm. Even the latter didn’t work for Mr. Biden. The things he said had the rhythm and smirk of sarcasm without the cutting substance.
And so the Romney-Ryan ticket emerged ahead. Its momentum was neither stopped nor slowed and likely was pushed forward.
Another way to tell who’s winning is to watch the random omens. For instance, today Lindsay Lohan endorsed Romney.
Barack Obama told ABC News that the presidential debate didn’t go his way, because he was “just too polite.”
That’s not a problem Joe Biden is likely to experience.
Biden has gone astonishingly far in national politics for a blithering idiot, largely on the basis of his ability to shout down opponents using inflammatory language, unbridled emotionalism, and the most extravagant version of ultra-partisan talking points delivered as alleged facts. Biden is a verbal bully and a shameless liar who has successfully shrugged off a series of personal scandals (in which his false statements or plagiarism were exposed) rising all the way to the Vice Presidency. Paul Ryan had better be prepared tonight. Now that Ted Kennedy has gone to his reward, Joe Biden is the democrat party’s thug-in-chief.
The Hill tells us that no details are available as to how exactly the biker chick wound up sitting on the Vice Presidential lap, or what happened subsequently.
Jim Geraghty (by morning email) admired the scene.
Everything about this picture is perfect: Her expression, his expression, her attire, the looks on the two bikers on either side, her hands gently resting in an almost-provocative fashion, the fact that we can’t see Biden’s hands . . .
Without the Secret Service, Sheriff Joe gets stomped like a NARC at a Hell’s Angel’s rally.
The Biden-Biker Chick photo would have been strange enough for any weekend by itself, but apparently President Obama was not going to let himself be outdone by the likes of Biden.
Obama’s photo reminded people everywhere that Joe Biden is a heartbeat from the presidency.
Jim Geraghty observed, snarkily:
Okay, so maybe Biden gets the second-string Secret Service guys. Maybe they’re not quick enough to prevent some chick from moving in and sitting on the Vice President’s lap, but at least Obama’s staff is quick, silent, always watching the crowd for anyone who wants to reach out to the president and . . .
Joe Biden debating Paul Ryan is going to be a battle of IQs reminiscent of George Custer taking on 6000 Cheyenne and Sioux warriors with just over 200 men.
Roger Kimball gloats over Paul Ryan’s acceptance speech and indulges in a just little schadenfreude with respect to the opposition.
I suspect that Joe Biden is feeling pretty awful this morning. For that matter, I’d wager Barack Obama has had better nights’ rest. Condi Rice’s speech was bad enough for the Democrats — it was serious, dignified, eloquent — but Paul Ryan hit it out of the park. They both must have watched Ryan’s speech. They both must have come away with an empty feeling in the pit of the stomach. And poor Joe has to debate Ryan in a little more than a month. I almost feel sorry for him. Almost. ...
He read the speech, but he knows how to make it seem ex tempore, almost confidential. His manner is open, confident, but somehow also humble. There is nothing swaggering, nothing of the braggart or narcissist about him. He seems impressed not by the sound of his own voice but by the facts and observations he shares with his listeners. He also exuded the physical grace of youth. His iPod playlist, unlike Mitt Romney’s, started with AC/DC and went to Zepplin. The audience loved that.
Ryan’s obvious sincerity allows him to deliver devastating one-liners without seeming cruel:
President Obama is the kind of politician who puts promises on the record, and then calls that the record. But we are four years into this presidency. The issue is not the economy as Barack Obama inherited it, not the economy as he envisions it, but this economy as we are living it.
Ouch. But then came this:
College graduates should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life.
That must have stung.
The Wall Street Journal was openly contemptuous.
President Obama’s extraordinary response to Paul Ryan’s budget yesterday—with its blistering partisanship and multiple distortions—was the kind Presidents usually outsource to some junior lieutenant. Mr. Obama’s fundamentally political document would have been unusual even for a Vice President in the fervor of a campaign.
The immediate political goal was to inoculate the White House from criticism that it is not serious about the fiscal crisis, after ignoring its own deficit commission last year and tossing off a $3.73 trillion budget in February that increased spending amid a record deficit of $1.65 trillion. Mr. Obama was chased to George Washington University yesterday because Mr. Ryan and the Republicans outflanked him on fiscal discipline and are now setting the national political agenda.
Mr. Obama did not deign to propose an alternative to rival Mr. Ryan’s plan, even as he categorically rejected all its reform ideas, repeatedly vilifying them as essentially un-American. “Their vision is less about reducing the deficit than it is about changing the basic social compact in America,” he said, supposedly pitting “children with autism or Down’s syndrome” against “every millionaire and billionaire in our society.” The President was not attempting to join the debate Mr. Ryan has started, but to close it off just as it begins and banish House GOP ideas to political Siberia.
Mr. Obama then packaged his poison in the rhetoric of bipartisanship—which “starts,” he said, “by being honest about what’s causing our deficit.” The speech he chose to deliver was dishonest even by modern political standards.
Paul Ryan put it best: “He’s basically a pyromaniac in a field of straw men.”
Clive Crook, an Atlantic liberal and Obama supporter, found neither substance nor merit in it
Obama had a difficult assignment in this speech, partly because of the exaggerated hopes for it. ... Even allowing for that, it was weak both politically and substantively. My instant unguarded reaction, in fact, was to find it not just weak but pitiful. I honestly wondered why he bothered.
There was no sign of anything worth calling a plan to curb borrowing faster than in the budget. He offered no more than a list of headings under which $4 trillion of deficit reduction (including the $2 trillion already in his budget) might be found—domestic non-security spending, defense, health costs, and tax reform. Fine, sure. But what he said was devoid of detail. He spent more of his time stressing what he would not agree to than describing clear proposals of his own. ...
The speech was more notable for its militant—though ineffectual—hostility to Republican proposals than for any fresh thinking of its own. It was a waste of breath.
Mr. Crook was clearly entirely correct, since all the President seems to have accomplished was to put the Vice President to sleep.
That great mind Joe Biden, in the course of addressing a $1000-a-plate democrat fundraiser in New York today, predicted that their party would win next Tuesday and retain control of both the House and the Senate.
Biden also defended the liberal cult of statism, asserting:
“Every single great idea that has marked the 21st century, the 20th century and the 19th century has required government vision and government incentive,” he said. “In the middle of the Civil War you had a guy named Lincoln paying people $16,000 for every 40 miles of track they laid across the continental United States. … No private enterprise would have done that for another 35 years.”
Barack Obama, Chris Dodd, Democrats, Diane Feinstein, Harry Reid, Hillary Clinton, Hypocrisy, Joseph Biden, Max Baucus, Reconciliation, Senate
Back in 2005, when democrats held up George W. Bush’s judicial appointments in an unprecedented display of partisanship, the Republican majority in the Senate threatened to use the so-called “nuclear option,” i.e., to use reconciliation to overcome the filibuster to achieve judicial confirmations.
Diane Feinstein warns: “It begins with judicial nominations, next will be executive appointments, and then legislation.”
Biden: “I pray God when the Democrats take back control we don’t make the kind of naked power grab you are doing.”
In 2005, John McCain split from the Republican Party and derailed the proposed nuclear option, imposing his own compromise.
"Avatar" (2009), 2008 Election, Aurochs, Barack Obama, Democrats, Extinct Species, Joseph Biden, Massachusetts, Satire
“Chemical Ali” sentenced to death again. They’re going to have to hang that guy several times.
James Cameron endorses ecoterrorism.
Martha Coakley losing in Massachusetts Senate race. Democrats blame George W. Bush.
Aurochs images from Chauvet cave.
Italians scientists propose breeding living cattle backwards to a genetic match with the extinct aurochs. Heck cattle descended from Herman Goering’s similar program are available, but they are intending to use Highland cattle and the Italian Maremma.
Frank Fleming, at PJM, reveals more Game Changing moments from 2008:
Barack Obama’s rumored drug use was a lot more recent than most people think, but he vowed to never do it again after he woke up one morning with Joe Biden as a running mate.
Read the whole thing.
Amusement, Andrew Sullivan, Ann Althouse, Barack Obama, Glenn Reynolds, Joseph Biden, Photography, The Blogosphere
Glenn Reynolds yesterday found the above photo on the White Houses’s Flicker page and posted it (along with the enlarged detail below) inviting readers to “interpret the body language.”
Barack Obama has always been a mirror, reflecting back to individual members of the American public their own preconceptions, and the Instapundit selection provides a perfect opportunity for a wide range of interpretation.
I, for instance, thought Obama looked like the Godfather contemptuously rebuking an incompetent consigliere.
Over on Flicker, MCarrier1 thought Obama looked like James Bond.
Hot Air immediately launched a caption contest, where FishGov offered:
The Emperor Obama: [to the Senate] In order to ensure our security and continuing stability, the Republic will be reorganized into the first Galactic Empire, for a safe and secure society which I assure you will last for ten thousand years.
Biden: [to Emperor Obama] So this is how liberty dies… with thunderous applause.
Ann Althouse, on the other hand, just thought The man is tired and it’s a way to get above it all. And that’s the other thing I see in that face: He’s tired and he’s floating above it all.
Andrew Sullivan had to puzzle for a while over what exactly Glenn Reynolds was trying to pull posting this cryptic photo, (a)nd then I realized why this photo immediately strikes some people are damning. Obama is a black man who looks as if he is condescending to a white man. That’s political gold.
Ariana Huffington invites Joe Biden to follow the illustrious example of arch-wimp Cyrus Vance and resign in protest in the unlikely event that Barack Obama fails to chicken out of Afghanistan.
It’s been known for a while that Biden has been on the other side of McChrystal’s desire for a big escalation of our forces there—the New York Times reported last month that he has “deep reservations” about it. So if the president does decide to escalate, Biden, for the good of the country, should escalate his willingness to act on those reservations.
What he must not do is follow the same weak and worn-out pattern of “opposition” we’ve become all-too-accustomed to, first with Vietnam and then with Iraq. You know the drill: after the dust settles, and the country begins to look back and not-so-charitably wonder, “what were they thinking?” the mea-culpa-laden books start to come out. On page after regret-filled page, we suddenly hear how forceful this or that official was behind closed doors, arguing against the war, taking a principled stand, expressing “strong concern” and, yes, “deep reservations” to the president, and then going home each night distraught at the unnecessary loss of life.
Well, how about making the mea culpa unnecessary? Instead of saving it for the book, how about future author Biden unfetter his conscience in real time—when it can actually do some good? If Biden truly believes that what we’re doing in Afghanistan is not in the best interests of our national security—and what issue is more important than that?—it’s simply not enough to claim retroactive righteousness in his memoirs.
Though it would be a crowning moment in a distinguished career, such an act of courage would likely be only the beginning. Biden would then become the natural leader of the movement to wind down this disastrous war and focus on the real dangers in Pakistan. ...
I have no doubt that Joe Biden is a loyal guy—the question is who deserves his loyalty most? His “team” isn’t the White House, but the whole country. And if it becomes clear in the coming days that his loyalty to these two teams is in conflict, he should do the right thing. And quit.
Obama may be no drama, but Biden loves drama. And what could more dramatic than resigning the vice presidency on principle? And what principle could be more honorable than refusing to go along with a policy of unnecessarily risking American blood and treasure—and America’s national security? Now that would be a Whisky Tango Foxtrot moment for the McChrystal crowd—one that would be a lot more significant than some lame, after-the-fact apology delivered in a too-late-to-matter book.
Somehow I am not able to picture Joseph Biden doing the far, far better thing, even for the Left. Nice try, though, Ariana.
You can rely on liberals to start looking for the exit.
The New York Times tells us that King Obama is making his decisions with the counsel of the court clown.
President Obama is exploring alternatives to a major troop increase in Afghanistan, including a plan advocated by Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. to scale back American forces and focus more on rooting out Al Qaeda there and in Pakistan, officials said Tuesday.
Hugh Hewitt recognizes how serious a choice Obama is making.
The idea of rejecting the proposals of the new commander on the ground less than six months after his appointment is bad enough, but to do so because Slow Joe Biden has a bright idea is truly terrible.
The president’s domestic agenda is in a shambles and his ratings are plummeting to near record levels for a modern president in his first year in office. His global warming hysteria of yesterday adds to the idea of a rookie being handed unvetted speeches—like the one in Congress with the man who died from denial of treatment, except he didn’t—and rushing off to his next media event.
Thousands of Americans died because of the Taliban’s partnership with al Qaeda, a partnership that endures. Hundreds more have died pushing the Taliban-al Qaeda alliance deep into the remote mountains of the region. General McChrystal’s report asserts that with the right forces, stability can be achieved, and within an acceptable number of years.
The choice facing President Obama is a defeat and vulnerability to more terror plots and a second mission back when one occurs, or the acceptance of the commanding general’s recommendations. This isn’t hard. The fact that Joe Biden is on the other side makes it even easier to tell Secretary Gates to proceed with the McChyrstal plan.
Probably, Obama and Mr. Vice-Blowhard-Doofus are thinking that the day is not far off when their own leftwing base will find stabbing American forces in the back one more time absolutely irresistible. So Obama is giving serious consideration to trying to avoid the misery of Lyndon Johnson by resorting to the cowardice of Jimmy Carter.