Joe Biden announced the new AUKUS defense pact in a video appearance with Boris Johnson and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Biden remembered Boris Johnson’s name–kudos for that–but blanked on the name of the Australian P.M., even though he was looking at him on the screen, and called him “that fella from down under.” That is pretty much all in a day’s work for Biden, but he has taken a fair amount of grief for it.
I found the London Times’ account of the incident interesting. After recounting the facts, the Times was quick to provide Biden with what was, for me anyway, a novel excuse:
Biden, who has suffered from a lifelong stutter, has often been derided for botching speeches, making him an easy target for Donald Trump and his political allies as they suggested he was suffering from “dementia”.
Biden is a lifelong gasbag. His problem isn’t that he stutters; the words flow smoothly enough, or used to, anyway. The problem is that they often flow stupidly. It is interesting that the European press, like our own, is covering for Biden’s obviously failing mental faculties. Has the White House put out the “stutter” excuse to reassure foreign reporters? It would be interesting to know.
The London Times tells its readers that it is only “Donald Trump and his political allies” who are so uncouth as to acknowledge Biden’s mental decline. Trump is the universal villain not just in America’s press, but in liberal precincts around the world. Who was the character in 1984 who was blamed whenever anything went wrong? Goldstein, I think. Donald Trump is the Goldstein of our time.