Watching Joe go slow

Team Biden staged a televised event for their man to speak inside an empty Pittsburgh site. Biden stared fixedly at a prompter placed at some distance before him. He had no audience and took no questions. The thing was weird beyond belief.

The speech itself was a mind-numbing collection of platitudes, cliches, and lies. To that extent it was a conventional political speech. Listening to it, however, is painful. Biden has become a deeply contrived figure. Thus the artificiality of the staging.

Here are a few items that I think are worthy of note, mostly without further comment:

• gratuitous mention of “cancer researchers in Minnesota” (i.e., Minnesota is in play and we’re on his dance card)

• those cancer researchers in Minnesota become singular and feminine (“she’ll never give up”)

• “I want a safe America” (that’s bold!)

• “right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness…” x 2 or 3 (formerly known as “the thing”)

• misquote of Kellyanne Conway

• “Mike Prence”

• if he were president there would be less violence: “Here’s why. I’ve personally spoken to George Floyd’s family and to Jacob Blake’s family…They’ve told us none of this violence honors George or Jacob”

• word salad at 14:10 when he loses his place…incapable of expressing coherent thought

• Trump “plan to defund Social Security” (a golden oldie)

• “he’s stroking violence…”

• “multiplying…” (emphasis on “ply” as he reads along)

• “declining faith in the birth of the right American future…”

• “building the nation’s roads, bridges, solar rays…”

• replaying Russia bologna…Biden is humiliated…wow

• “I am not banning fracking”

• “my all resolve to solve”

• The principal video recording available on YouTube is programmed or hacked to stutter on “right-wing militias”

The text of the speech demonstrated the Democratic themes against Trump, but, as I say, Biden’s performance is weirdly out of joint. He is fortunate to be graced by an utterly compliant press.