President Biden turns 81 today. Everyone outside the White House sees that he is too old for the job. Everyone inside the White House sees it too, which is why they have taken measures to camouflage his infirmity. These measures have not proven effective. They are like trying to disguise a camel with sunglasses.
Biden’s likely Republican opponent has his own problems and Biden may yet win the 2024 election. He’s got that going for him. At least that’s what he tells himself in his lucid intervals.
When he turned 80 Biden sought to make the best of his milestone birthday. With his usual eloquence Biden proclaimed to a friendly union audience:
I tell you what, someone said, “You know, that Biden, he’s getting old, man. I tell you what.” Well, guess what? Guess what? I can — and, you know, the only thing that comes with age is a little bit of wisdom. I — but I — (applause) — I’ve been doing this longer than anybody.
You can say that again, and in May he did. Biden reiterated that he has acquired a “hell of a lot of wisdom” over the years.
Administration spokesmen have dutifully repeated the wisdom line. However, Biden made 80 look like the new 100 and he’s not getting any younger. He must think about it in his alert moments. Having spent nearly 40 percent of his time in office on vacation and having contracted his work days to suit his energy level, he’s certainly had time to do so.
We haven’t seen much evidence of the alleged Biden wisdom that comes with his advanced age. That’s the problem. It’s more of a laugh line than a serious thought, at least for those inclined to laugh instead of cry.
Of the seven ages of man identified by Jaques in As You Like It, Biden appears to be rounding the corner from the sixth (“his big manly voice, Turning again toward childish treble, pipes And whistles in his sound”) to the seventh (“second childishness and mere oblivion”). Or as Rod Serling might have put it: “You’re moving into a land of both shadow and substance, of things and ideas. You’ve just crossed over to Kamala Harris.”
Biden’s 80th birthday meditation — that with senility comes wisdom — has not proved persuasive. Biden was a dolt when in full possession of his faculties and he’s far from that now.