UPDATE March 24, 2022:
Biden’s weak, indecisive leadership will destroy the greatest thing about America: our unquestioned strength as the world’s preeminent superpower.
“Minor incursion” and an “in kind” response signal Putin that America under Biden is not up to the challenge posed by Russia.
Remember Barack Obama’s chemical weapons red line in Syria? After four years of no-nonsense, take no prisoners Donald Trump we’re right back to that movable red line again except this time the stakes are much, much greater.
It seems like a long time ago, but it’s only been two months since President Biden tripped over his remarks about responding to a “minor incursion” by Russia into Ukraine. An invasion is an invasion, so what exactly constituted a minor invasion in the president’s mind was up for grabs. Needless to say, his tolerance for the invasion of America via our Southwest border was not a good omen for Ukraine.
Biden relented on that gaffe and made it clear no incursion would be acceptable. Today he made a much more alarming and equally indecisive remark at a press conference from Brussels. He promised an “in kind” response to a chemical attack from Russia that would depend on the “nature of the use.”
Two things are very, very wrong with these remarks. First is the definition of “in kind.” Does he mean we will use chemical weapons against Russia or even Russian civilians? Depending on the nature of Russia’s use that could be an in kind response and also a war crime. Second, “nature of the use” sounds like there is some degree of tolerance for chemical weapons, just like he implied there would be tolerance for a minor invasion of Ukraine.
This is not a message from a strong leader. It’s what you expect to hear from someone who is weak, indecisive, and faltering. As we teeter on the brink of World War III it’s not the kind of signal anyone in NATO, especially the strongest nation in the alliance, should be sending to Vladimir Putin.
Will we get another White House correction to make it clear what kind response a chemical weapons attack will elicit? I hope not. We’ve already told Putin too much about what we’re planning and it’s pretty obvious nothing Biden says will dissuade him from whatever course of action he’s chosen. Putin may be a vicious, amoral war criminal but rest assured he is no Joe Biden.
UPDATE March 25, 2022:
Weak, indecisive leadership Part II: so what exactly is a “severe price,” Mr. President?
National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan was the lucky Biden administration official charged with bailing out the president today after what sounded to a lot of us like a threat to use chemical weapons against Russia if they were deployed against Ukraine. Sullivan clarified Biden’s remark:
No. No. And you heard him in another answer say we’ll respond accordingly — meaning, you know, we will select the form and nature of our response based on the nature of the action Russia takes, and we’ll do so in coordination with our Allies.273
Right. That still sounds like chemical weapons which, in Putin’s case, would probably be a better strategy than the “severe price” we eventually threatened:
MR. SULLIVAN: So, again, I will just say, with respect to any use of weapons of mass destruction — nuclear, chemical, biological — Russia would pay a severe price for the use of those weapons, as the President has previously said.274
No one knows what that severe price would be and no one in the White House is saying, but I’ll bet Putin has this latest retraction figured out and I seriously doubt he’s shaking in his boots.
UPDATE March 27, 2022:
Confidence in America shattered? If the White House won’t stand behind Biden’s words, then we don’t have a president.
NATO trip proves once and for all that our commander in chief is not the person in charge.
How many gaffes, misstatements, and retractions will it take to completely shatter what credibility America under Joe Biden has left? Here at home we’ve learned to ignore the statements the president makes when he escapes from his protective White House confines. The real administration stance will come later to quell whatever uproar he caused. When his comments are made to the world and have the power to change the course of history a simple Psakiesque correction won’t repair the damage done.
Biden’s European trip to solidify NATO unity was an absolute nightmare for America’s world leadership. In a span of three days we heard about an “in kind” response to chemical weapons that wasn’t in kind at all and turned out to be a weak, wishy washy “severe price” threat scenario. Our troops were informed what they would see when they arrived in Ukraine. That shocker still wasn’t enough to convince the world that America’s president can’t be trusted, so Biden called for the removal of Vladimir Putin.
That last one is precisely what we need to happen and frankly, it’s time the West showed the world that NATO has a spine even if America under Biden does not. The White House quickly jumped on the regime change gaffe, which gives us good reason to ask who is really making the decisions? Obviously it isn’t Biden. A person or persons unseen have the power to correct America’s commander in chief while we stand very close to global nuclear war.
When statement after statement from the leader of the greatest superpower on earth has to be vetted by persons unknown and then publicly corrected America has no president. We knew this early on when Biden said he wasn’t allowed to take questions or revealed that he was told not to do this or that. It was all smirks and giggles at first because a Democrat Party president can do no wrong, but now it’s nuclear war serious and we don’t know who our commander in chief is. Kamala Harris? Dr. Jill? Jen Psaki? A loose collection of White House ideologues whose names we’ve never heard?
We have a president who is not in command of his faculties who seems on the brink of running down the sidewalk sans clothing. Americans deserve to know who is running our country and that means White House transparency about who makes the decision that something Biden said must be corrected. Whoever this person or persons are, they are probably the very same people who told the president to stay in hiding during the 2020 campaign season while Donald Trump showed us what a real leader can do. That real leader would not back down from a call for regime change in Russia given the current circumstances. Any administration official who contradicted him would find themselves on the sidewalk. America’s president, whoever he or she or they may be, doesn’t have the strength of will or faith in America’s greatness to do that. In times of crisis that’s a very dangerous thing for our country and the world order.
UPDATE March 30, 2022:
Biden attempts to further destroy our nonexistent faith in Democrats and his public health apparatus with new COVID.gov website announcement.
Too little, too late again? White House tries to shift blame for its COVID failures to Congress.
When omicron hit the Biden administration came up short. Despite the easily predictable emergence of a new variant the White House was caught by surprise. With so many climate priorities to take care of perhaps another surge in American deaths was judged to be necessary collateral damage.
With BA.2 now making the rounds the administration wants us all to know that our health comes first and foremost. This morning the White House released a fact sheet to announce its new COVID.gov website:
Today, the Biden Administration is launching COVID.gov, a new one-stop shop website to help all people in the United States gain even better access to lifesaving tools like vaccines, tests, treatments, and masks, as well as get the latest updates on COVID-19 in their area.275
Just in case we are still angry about what happened the last time we were hit by a new version of this virus, the announcement blamed Congress for not spending tens of billions more in emergency funds:
The President was clear that in order to execute on this plan and to stay ahead of the virus, the Administration needs additional funding from Congress—including $22.5 billion in immediate emergency funds. To date, Congress has failed to provide those funds and the country is already suffering the consequences.276
That’s a bad thing to come out with publicly as Democrat Party hopes of hanging onto power after November are all but gone. Admitting Democrats who applaud their Affordable Care Act don’t have the backs of minority communities won’t help:
These issues disproportionately impact our hardest-hit and highest-risk populations, including communities of color and individuals with disabilities. The Administration continues to urge Congress to act quickly, as the consequences will continue to get worse in the coming weeks.277
A boastful headline in today’s announcement reminds us of another touchy issue:
Administration Continues to Urge Congress to Provide Funding Immediately to Help Keep These Life-Saving Protections Readily Available to All.278
The COVID.gov release mentions that orders for monoclonal antibodies have been cancelled. Not only does this recall the no COVID tests screwup, it also reminds us about the Biden administration’s plan for race-based distribution of lifesaving medications and the emphasis on vaccines instead of cures.
I think we can assume the White House doesn’t want to remind us of its health care racism. It should not be eager to remind us about its other COVID failures, either. Perhaps that’s why the strategy is to blame Congress this time even if it hurts Biden’s own party.
UPDATE April 1, 2022:
Biden promises to be more like George Washington, vows to let us know when he plans to take a hatchet to America.
Ok, that’s not strictly true. In fact, it’s not true at all. Biden made no such promise. You probably figured that out from the George Washington reference. Last time I checked our first president was teetering in the gray area between historical icon and deplorable racist.
It’s April 1 and Biden thinks we are the fools.
Can you imagine living in an America where we can believe what our president says instead of assuming that every word that comes out of his mouth is a lie? Biden didn’t even make it through the second sentence of yesterday’s speech excusing his administration’s high gas prices without lying:
As I said in my State of the Union Address, I’m going to always be honest with the American people.279
When has he been honest with us? Never, to be best of my knowledge. As if to prove my point he rambled on:
Today, I want to talk about one aspect of Putin’s war that affects and has real effects on the American people: Putin’s price hike that Americans and our allies are feeling at the pump.280
Most Americans with the smarts to pass a driver’s test know this is a lie. What’s so intolerable about Biden’s lying is that he does it so often, so casually, as if being honest with the American people is not only optional, but something that doesn’t matter.
Biden mentioned Putin ten times and Putin’s price hike four times in his address. He’s fond of repetition, perhaps so he can remember what he’s saying:
Our prices are rising because of Putin’s actions. There isn’t enough supply.281
That’s not true. We have plenty of energy resources for ourselves and our allies. If Biden wants more supply perhaps he should try not alienating our energy producers and threatening their survival to placate the climate radicals who control every economic move he makes.
The president’s solution is not what it sounds like:
Now Putin’s price strike — price hike is hitting Americans at the pump, which brings me to the first part of my plan: to immediately increase the supply of oil.282
It’s difficult to know what increasing the supply means to the president. He resorted to socialist talk about oil industry profiteering and then made the most ridiculous statement of the whole speech:
This [releasing strategic petroleum reserves] is a wartime bridge to increase oil supply until production ramps up later this year.283
He wasn’t entirely clear about where all that production will come from. I think it’s safe to assume that with midterms looming and climate freaks freaking out about losing their political leverage the resurgence of our fossil fuel industry will not be at the top of Democrat campaign platforms or the White House agenda.
Before taking questions Biden finally said something that is true:
Remember, we’re the only nation that has turned every crisis we ever faced into an opportunity. We have a crisis: the price at the pump.283
Take that as a warning. Time to start saving for an electric car, folks.
UPDATE April 4, 2022:
Great thing about America #72: when America’s president declares a foreign leader is a war criminal he backs up his words with strength.
Biden’s comments this morning are an embarrassing mess that continue his record of historic weakness.
Remember the old saying that you don’t bring a knife to a gunfight? The same goes for accusing a foreign leader of being a war criminal. Don’t even bother if you can’t back up your words with strength.
This is what the world heard from Joe Biden this morning after he called the mass killing in Bucha a war crime:
Q: What are you going to do about it, sir? Are you going to do more sanctions on Russia?
THE PRESIDENT: I’m seeking more sanctions, yes. I’ll have time to announce that to you.284
Remember, this is the same Joe Biden who angrily claimed sanctions don’t deter.
After Biden stated that Putin should be held accountable, we got this:
Q: Can you actually hold him accountable without sanctions?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, no —
Q: What else can you do?
THE PRESIDENT: No, no — go — go — the war crimes tri- — yes, I’m going to continue to add sanctions.285
So the plan is to add sanctions he told us don’t deter and were not meant to stop Putin from invading Ukraine. Apparently he was about to tack on a war crimes tribunal before he stopped himself, but what’s the point? Putin’s already heard enough to embolden him. Every time Biden opens his mouth he sends the message loud and clear that America is off our game and we’re not up to the challenge of this crisis.
UPDATE April 8, 2022:
Biden dishonors the Supreme Court.
During a celebration on the White House South Lawn today a jubilant Joe Biden confused Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s confirmation hearings with the character assassination Democrats conducted against Justice Brett Kavanaugh and the vitriol they later levied against Justice Amy Coney Barrett:
I knew it wouldn’t be easy, but I knew the person I nominated would be put through a painful and difficult confirmation process. But I have to tell you, what Judge Jackson was put through was well beyond that. There was verbal abuse. The anger. The constant interruptions. The most vile, baseless assertions and accusations.285
From Biden’s dim perspective I suppose anything but unmitigated praise for his nominee would be construed as vile verbal abuse. Biden’s party set the standard for confirmation hearings. Despite the highly charged, partisan nature of Jackson’s confirmation she was spared the ugliness that characterized the Kavanaugh and Barrett trials. Perhaps Biden was napping while Democrats put these equally qualified nominees through their vicious partisan meat grinder.
Biden dishonors the Supreme Court by turning our system of justice into a racial headcount.
When I say that Biden dishonors the Supreme Court I intend no disrespect towards Judge Jackson. She is a victim of circumstance caught up in the administration’s unprecedented decision that not only should identity politics guide its judgment, but that the American people should accept this as a maxim that makes our nation a better place.
It doesn’t. The president is intent on reversing a century of progress and bringing us right back to where we started by erasing the notion that we are equal because of what we are, not what we look like.
In the end the president got what he wanted. Thanks to his inability to communicate effectively with the American people history will remember Justice Jackson as the identity politics’ choice. That’s not her fault. It is Joe Biden’s. He reminded us why Jackson was nominated:
But when I decided to run, this was one of the first decisions I made. I could see it. I could see it as a day of hope, a day of promise, a day of progress; a day when, once again, the moral arc of the universe, as Barack used to quote all the time, bends just a little more toward justice.286
We can only assume that the reference to justice implies racial equity. He sent that message home later with this comment:
That’s why I’m proud to say, with the great help of Dick Durbin, I’ve nominated more Black women judges to the federal appeal courts than all previous presidents combined. (Applause.)287
So thanks to Joe Biden we’ve gone from valuing people for who they are and what they can do to counting heads based on a color palette. Perhaps that’s his notion of progress because he comes from another time.
Despite my conservatism I wish soon to be Justice Jackson all the best and a long, noteworthy career on our nation’s highest court. It is in the interest of every American that she faithfully interprets the Constitution for the benefit of our nation.
Biden? He deserves only shame.
273“Press Gaggle by Principal Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan.” whitehosue.gov. March 25, 2022. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/press-briefings/2022/03/25/press-gaggle-by-principal-deputy-press-secretary-karine-jean-pierre-and-national-security-advisor-jake-sullivan-en-route-rzeszow-poland/, retrieved March 25, 2022.
275“Fact Sheet: Biden Administration Launches COVID.gov, a New One-Stop Shop Website for Vaccines, Tests, Treatments, Masks, and the Latest COVID-?19 Information.” whitehouse.gov. March 30, 2022. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2022/03/30/fact-sheet-biden-administration-launches-covid-gov-a-new-one-stop-shop-website-for-vaccines-tests-treatments-masks-and-the-latest-covid-19-information/, retrieved March 30, 2022.
279“Remarks by President Biden on Actions to Lower Gas Prices at the Pump for American Families.” whitehouse.gov. March 31, 2022. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/speeches-remarks/2022/03/31/remarks-by-president-biden-on-actions-to-lower-gas-prices-at-the-pump-for-american-families/, retrieved April 1, 2022.
284“Remarks by President Biden After Marine One Arrival.” whitehouse.gov. April 4, 2022. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/speeches-remarks/2022/04/04/remarks-by-president-biden-after-marine-one-arrival-9/, retrieved April 4, 2022.
285“Remarks by President Biden, Vice President Harris, and Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson on the Senate’s Historic, Bipartisan Confirmation of Judge Jackson to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.” whitehouse.gov. April 8, 2022. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/speeches-remarks/2022/04/08/remarks-by-president-biden-vice-president-harris-and-judge-ketanji-brown-jackson-on-the-senates-historic-bipartisan-confirmation-of-judge-jackson-to-be-an-associate-justice-of-the-supreme-court/, retrieved April 8, 2022.
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