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View Full Version : Joe Biden--Statesman Extraordinaire


rfrobison
07-28-2009, 12:17 AM
I tried to bite my tongue on this one. I really did. And I'm being a nasty partisan, I know, but I just can't help myself:

Vice President Joe Biden, who was ostensibly selected as Obama's running mate for his experience and foreign policy acumen--he'll attest to that himself!--has once again put his foot in his mouth.

Imagine the media reaction if Dick Cheney had given, not two weeks after Bush had gone to Russia to assure Moscow of our respect for that great nation, an interview with the Wall Street Journal in which he proclaimed that because the Russian economy was "withering," the Kremlin would prove quite pliable on national security issues.

What might the New York Times say in their editorial the next day? Something like this, maybe:

Vice President Cheney has once again done his best to undercut his boss, opining in an interview yesterday that Russia's economic weakness means the U.S. has a "stronger hand" in its dealings with Moscow.

This may be perfectly true, but by poking the Russian bear in the eye needlessly, he has made Moscow less likely to cooperate on issues of mutual concern, such as Iran's nuclear weapons program.

Cheney's seemingly insatiable desire to antagonize the former super power and paint the world in black and white jeopardizes the chances for "resetting" U.S.-Russian relations....
**************************************

What do we get when Biden does exactly that? Silence.

Go figure.

claymisher
07-28-2009, 12:33 AM
Sigh. No argument here. Can't win 'em all.

graz
07-28-2009, 12:39 AM
I tried to bite my tongue on this one. I really did. And I'm being a nasty partisan, I know, but I just can't help myself:

Vice President Joe Biden, who was ostensibly selected as Obama's running mate for his experience and foreign policy acumen--he'll attest to that himself!--has once again put his foot in his mouth.

Imagine the media reaction if Dick Cheney had given, not two weeks after Bush had gone to Russia to assure Moscow of our respect for that great nation, an interview with the Wall Street Journal in which he proclaimed that because the Russian economy was "withering," the Kremlin would prove quite pliable on national security issues.

What might the New York Times say in their editorial the next day? Something like this, maybe:

Vice President Cheney has once again done his best to undercut his boss, opining in an interview yesterday that Russia's economic weakness means the U.S. has a "stronger hand" in its dealings with Moscow.

This may be perfectly true, but by poking the Russian bear in the eye needlessly, he has made Moscow less likely to cooperate on issues of mutual concern, such as Iran's nuclear weapons program.

Cheney's seemingly insatiable desire to antagonize the former super power and paint the world in black and white jeopardizes the chances for "resetting" U.S.-Russian relations....
**************************************

What do we get when Biden does exactly that? Silence.

Go figure.
It's all part of a conspiracy to woo China. If you can follow this you're a natural for Washington politics. So Hillary (Sec of State) (http://www.forbes.com/2009/07/23/hillary-clinton-india-obama-opinions-columnists-gordon-chang.html) is rumored to be end running Obama on China, while he is cozying up to the withering Bear. Then Biden is instructed to let fly with the Russian counter narrative to signal China....
Don't worry, Jake. It's Chinatown.

rfrobison
07-28-2009, 12:42 AM
It's all part of a conspiracy to woo China. If you can follow this you're a natural for Washington politics. So Hillary (Sec of State) (http://www.forbes.com/2009/07/23/hillary-clinton-india-obama-opinions-columnists-gordon-chang.html) is rumored to be end running Obama on China, while he is cozying up to the withering Bear. Then Biden is instructed to let fly with the Russian counter narrative to signal China....
Don't worry, Jake. It's Chinatown.

ROFLOL!

pampl
07-28-2009, 01:02 AM
I think you're underestimating the length of time editorialists take to ply their trade. It was 8 days between Skip Gates being arrested and the NY Times printing Fish's op ed on it, which, as far as I can tell from their site, was their first. That's 8 days someone could've claimed the NY Times doesn't care about black people. Assuming these things take a consistent amount of time, you have 6 more to complain about the NY Times not caring about Republican people. After that you can join the festivities on the blogosphere where all the bloggers congratulate themselves on forcing the MSM to editorialize on this issue which surely would otherwise be ignored.

That is a historically bad interview, though, and Biden should see some kind of reprimand for it. If the Obama admin isn't going to distance themselves from Biden's more stupidly candid moments then he really should be taken off the foreign policy beat before he starts running his mouth about the Armenian genocide or whatever else crosses his mind

rfrobison
07-28-2009, 01:58 AM
I think you're underestimating the length of time editorialists take to ply their trade. It was 8 days between Skip Gates being arrested and the NY Times printing Fish's op ed on it, which, as far as I can tell from their site, was their first. That's 8 days someone could've claimed the NY Times doesn't care about black people. Assuming these things take a consistent amount of time, you have 6 more to complain about the NY Times not caring about Republican people. After that you can join the festivities on the blogosphere where all the bloggers congratulate themselves on forcing the MSM to editorialize on this issue which surely would otherwise be ignored.

That is a historically bad interview, though, and Biden should see some kind of reprimand for it. If the Obama admin isn't going to distance themselves from Biden's more stupidly candid moments then he really should be taken off the foreign policy beat before he starts running his mouth about the Armenian genocide or whatever else crosses his mind

Point taken on the time lag. And as someone who has worked in journalism (at a very low level), I am aware that space limitations mean you can't speak on every issue all the time.

As for li'l ol' me moving the editorial board of the NYT to say anything...Gfaaw! That'll be the day. And a good thing, too, I suppose, or we might get nothing but editorials on how the next "Star Trek" movie better have "Q" in it, or the world will come to an end.

To be honest, I don't think Biden's comments will make much difference one way or the other. I don't think the Ruskies are nearly as sensitive as we (they would have us?) believe.

kezboard
07-29-2009, 12:18 AM
No argument here, either, that was a stupid thing to say. But it's Biden. The NYT probably ran that editorial because Cheney did seem like he had an "insatiable desire to antagonize the Russian bear and paint everything in black and white", while Biden just seems like he has a tendency to say dumb stuff. I guess it isn't fair, but that's just the influence of personality in politics.

However. I thought the story was that Obama was getting too close to Russia and was just seconds away from selling Eastern Europe out, not that we were poking the Russian bear with pointy sticks -- or at least that's the impression I've gotten from the spin (http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/34238_Cold_War_Heroes_Beg_Obama_Not_to_Scrap_Missi le_Defense) on the letter to Obama from Vaclav Havel and friends.

rfrobison
07-29-2009, 12:32 AM
No argument here, either, that was a stupid thing to say. But it's Biden. The NYT probably ran that editorial because Cheney did seem like he had an "insatiable desire to antagonize the Russian bear and paint everything in black and white", while Biden just seems like he has a tendency to say dumb stuff. I guess it isn't fair, but that's just the influence of personality in politics.

However. I thought the story was that Obama was getting too close to Russia and was just seconds away from selling Eastern Europe out, not that we were poking the Russian bear with pointy sticks -- or at least that's the impression I've gotten from the spin (http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/34238_Cold_War_Heroes_Beg_Obama_Not_to_Scrap_Missi le_Defense) on the letter to Obama from Vaclav Havel and friends.

Actually, Kez, that NYT "editorial" was entirely fictitious. I wrote it myself. Don't bother searching the archive. I meant to say by way of criticism that the reaction of the media is a bit different when Democrats make foreign policy gaffes vs. when Republicans do it.

I may have spoken too soon, however, as Pampl pointed out. I see today there have been several critical editorials, including one by the L.A. Times, I believe.

As to the substance of what Biden said, I don't think I disagree with it at all, but whether he should have said it, well, that's a separate question.

The WSJ, by the way, had an editorial (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203609204574314683638019234.html) in yesterday's paper defending Biden for those comments and pointing out the problems with bending over backward to stroke Russia's imperial ego.