Tuesday night was Joe Biden’s first State of the Union address since being sworn in as president late last January. As this annual fare goes in terms of the strict number of minutes, I was surprised to hear this year’s came in on the short side. It did not feel like a short speech. It felt intolerably long.
What came to mind immediately after it concluded was a line from the only piece of Adam Sandler’s 1995 film ‘Billy Madison’ I have ever seen. After Sandler’s character gives an especially egregious run-on answer to a question about literature and the Industrial Revolution, the principal says flatly,
“Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.”
It’s a sad thing to say about the president of a great country you call home. This is a country for which I try to sustain high hopes.
Yet one positive thing can be said about the first year of the Biden presidency. His weakness and our vulnerability now putting us on the precipice of World War III notwithstanding – Biden has taken the masks off the Democrats in a way no amount of pleading and convincing by conservatives over the past two years was able to. And I’m not talking about the N95’s.
For instance, we are being told by those Democrats that the science changed the day before the SOTU. But it wasn’t the science regarding COVID that changed except in the sense that one particular science has been driving most of the policy and messaging since early 2020.
What they really mean is that the political science looks to be a changing for their political careers. With poll numbers for Democrats spelling doom for their party if we have anything approaching a free and fair election in November, plus Putin threatening the West generally and the United States in particular with nuclear weapons, it would seem they have finally decided to give up on the COVID melodrama.
Admittedly, it’s not just American Democrats throwing in the towel on the mandates, lockdowns, and masks. European countries led the way on this in the past several weeks, with Great Britain the most abrupt and surprising example when it announced a sudden end to vaccine passports and mask mandates on January 19th.
This is just what you might expect if we really are on the verge of World War III. It’s hardly a winning strategy to have domestic unrest and strife of the Freedom Convoy variety undermining morale at home and abroad, plus disrupting your internal logistics just when you most need to mobilize your economy and armed forces to face an existential threat.
Yet all the more rather than less, the fact of our being in this situation with Russia and China should be remembered in the context of years and even decades of wrongheaded foreign policy decisions by Democrats which have strengthened and emboldened both the CCP and the USSR romantics like Putin.
Some might say “better late than never” to that. Crippling sanctions are driving the Russian economy into the ground in response to the invasion of Ukraine – an invasion it should be noted provoked more by American weakness under Biden and the Democrats than by Ukrainian misbehavior. The polar opposite of Reagan’s maxim “peace through strength” was projected at home and abroad, and now we will reap the whirlwind.
Yet the invasion was also facilitated by such decisions as the cancellation of the KeystoneXL pipeline which would have decreased transportation costs of more domestic oil than we have been buying from Russia. And that is to say also that there is no reason on God’s green Earth why we or any other member of NATO should have been buying oil from Russia in the first place when we have plenty of our own to extract, plus millions begging to have the boot of State taken off the energy industry.
Just so, our decades long reliance on China for manufacturing of essential goods was highlighted enough to take decisive action 2-years ago at the outset of the pandemic which mounting evidence suggests they unleashed intentionally on the world as a kind of bioweapon. Besides this, undue deference to the CCP for the requisite good graces necessary for big American corporations to have access to the massive Chinese market should never have left us vulnerable to the compromises to free speech and intellectual property we have witnessed. Yet all of this did happen and continue to happen, and it should be questioned and investigated thoroughly starting with the politicians and public officials who greased the skids for it to happen even as their palms were greased in turn by our adversaries overseas.
All of the policy prescriptions necessary in an emergency way now were begged and pleaded for over several years and even decades. Yet consistently it was the Democrats who stonewalled, mocked, cajoled, and went on their merry way selling the security of not only our country out to the highest bidder, but also the security of our allies.
“The 80’s called. They want their foreign policy back.” Remember that?
To hear not a word of admission from Biden about the wrong-headedness of years and decades of Democrat policies undermining our national and allied security during his first State of the Union address is a damning kind of silence.
Putin is holding the world hostage with nukes if he does not get his way with Ukraine. But Biden is holding this country and the world hostage with stubborn insistence that more of the same lunacy which got us here is going to yield a better and safer result.
Say it ain’t so, Joe. You more than most got us into this mess. I for one don’t trust you to be the one to get us out again.
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