Biden’s infantile, self-aggrandizing ‘democracy’ speech

Plus: Fresh evidence of the cost of school closures

Hannah Beier/Bloomberg via Getty Images

By Sarah Arnold | Posted: Sep 04, 2022 – for

Major networks decided not to air President Joe Biden’s primetime speech which viciously attacked Republicans and MAGA supporters. 

CBS, NBC, ABC, and Fox all refused to run the president’s address to the nation because they deemed it was “too political” ahead of the November midterm elections. The networks instead chose to air re-runs of their shows. 

MSNBC and CNN however did run the divisive speech, which they of course thought was powerful and moving. 

In the past, Presidents rarely make speech during prime-time TV hours, unless the country is in a national crisis. When it does happen, networks will typically comply and and air the speech to make sure it reaches as many Americans as possible. 

It appeared networks were uninterested in what Biden had to say since only two major networks picked up the speech. 

Source: AP Photo/Evan Vucci

My cmnt: In the photos above we see a demonic, fascist monster revealing himself as he stupidly and grotesquely blames everyone but himself and democratic policies for the mess we are in.

By Paul Bois – Sep 1, 2022 – for

President Joe Biden called on Americans to “stop” MAGA Republicans, whom he consistently cast as a dark force against democracy in his “Soul of the Nation” prime-time speech on Thursday.

While much of the president’s dark and brooding speech focused on demonizing MAGA Republicans, one particular moment took the demonization a step further when the president appeared to suggest that Americans take up the mantle of isolating Trump supporters.

The president said this after portraying MAGA Republicans as direct threats to American democracy.

“MAGA Republicans do not respect the constitution,” he said. “They do not believe in the rule of law, they do not believe in the rule of law, they do not recognize the will of the people.”

“MAGA forces are determined to take this country backwards,” he added. “Backwards to an America where there is no right to choose. No right to privacy. No right to contraception. No right to marry who you love. They promote authoritarian leaders and they fan the flames of political violence.”

Later, the president encouraged Americans to fight against this dark and wicked ideology, characterizing MAGA Republicans as a minority, even though 70 million people voted for Donald Trump.

“We are not powerless in the face of these threats,” the president said. “We are not bystanders in this ongoing attack on democracy. There are far more Americans, far more Americans, from every background and belief, who reject the extreme MAGA ideology than those that accept it.”

“And folks, it’s within our power, within OUR HANDS, yours and mine, to stop the assault on democracy,” he continued. “I believe America is at an inflection point. One of those moments that determines the shape of everything that is to come after. And now, America must choose, to move forward or move backwards. To build a future or obsess about the past. To be a nation of hope and unity and optimism, or a nation of fear, division, and darkness.”


It Took Less Than a Day for Joe Biden to Retract His Attacks on MAGA Republicans

By Matt Vespa – Sep 4, 2022 – for

Joe Biden, who everyone thought would play the role of Mr. Unity, set off a bomb Thursday and later went on vacation. That incendiary device was the fascistic speech he delivered on the grounds of Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Biden decided to waste precious time not talking about inflation, drug cartels, border security, the rising fentanyl crisis, rising crime, or inflation—but MAGA Republicans and their supposed threat to the country.

Source: AP Photo/Evan Vucci


September 2, 2022 | 1:53 pm – Spectator World

(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Written by: Oliver Wiseman

Democracy for dummies 

Allow me to indulge in a quick thought experiment. Let’s assume that Biden is exactly right when he says, as he did in his primetime address last night, that the extremism of “MAGA Republicans… threatens the very foundations of our republic.”

In this experiment, the dark diagnosis is the truth and Biden knows it to be the truth. What should a responsible president do under such circumstances? The answer, as my colleague Matt Purple put it in his must-read reaction to the speech, is to seek to vanquish election denialism and ugly conspiracy theories by “working to bring [Trump supporters] back into the national fold” rather than “treating them like the enemy — which will drive them deeper into the MAGA maw.”

Look at what Biden has done in office and you will struggle to find instances of such action. Examples of exactly what a responsible president should not do, however, are easier to come by. To list a few, briefly: recommend the effective abolition of the filibuster; vilify Supreme Court judges; look on as your party spends tens of millions of dollars boosting the most extreme voices in Republican midterms; slander anyone who refuses to support your voting legislation as no better than a segregationist; describe modest changes to the rules that govern elections as “Jim Crow on steroids”; indulge in economic policymaking by executive edict in a way that you know is unconstitutional.

I could go on, but the point is hopefully clear enough: by his own standards, Biden is not acting as a responsible president should act in the circumstances he says we are in. That leaves one of two options: either Biden is exploiting a moment of national peril for partisan and personal gain, rendering him a cynical and irresponsible commander-in-chief, or Biden is ginning up a sense of national peril for partisan and personal gain, also rendering him a cynical and irresponsible commander-in-chief.

There are many reasons to object to Biden’s speech: the use of the trappings of the presidency — including the Marines standing in the background — for what was a highly partisan election pitch; the mischaracterization of the nature of the threat to American democracy; the weird lighting. But the failure of Biden to even come close to meeting the standards you might expect of a president faced with the challenge he describes is perhaps the most revealing.

Even if you buy Biden’s infantile, self-aggrandizing Harry-versus-Voldemort account of the current moment, the president offers you no solutions other than “vote for me.” Which, of course, was the whole point of the speech.

If last night’s address confirms Biden to be a cynical partisan, it also shows that the president will not escape the shadow of his predecessor and has given up trying to do so. He is acknowledging, in deed if not in word, that he serves no purpose to his party, to the country, to anyone, beyond defeating Trump. But he’s already done that, and so must confect another showdown. Biden makes it a two-man show and bets on being better than the one-term president who stirred up a phony stolen-election controversy that ended with his supporters attacking the US Capitol.

We get what we deserve in a democracy, and if we continue to fall for the self-centered and self-interested fictions of the current president and his predecessor, we won’t be rid of either of them any time soon.

The cost of school closures

The National Center for Education Statistics released its latest report on educational progress on Thursday. Two and a half years after the start of pandemic-era school closures, the document makes for grim, if unsurprising, reading. The study found that average scores for nine-year-olds declined by five points in reading and seven points in mathematics compared to 2020, which is the largest score decline in reading in thirty years and the only fall in score decline ever recorded for mathematics.

These precipitous falls are cause for considerable alarm. As is the fact that the gap between high and low performing kids is widening, As Bethany Mandel argues in her excellent piece for our September issue, the effects of lockdown learning loss will compound over time: “If you never learned how to read in first grade and you’re now in fourth grade, every part of your academic progress is stunted; everyone around you is moving but you can’t keep up, not just in reading and writing but in social studies, math and science.”

With school more or less back to normal this fall, teacher union chief Randi Weingarten is busy gaslighting Americans about why so many classrooms were closed for so long. Meanwhile, not nearly enough time and energy is going into the many thorny questions of how to make up for learning losses experienced by millions of American children in the last few years.

More good jobs news

US employers added 315,000 jobs in August and the jobless rate rose to 3.7 percent. A solid outcome in an already-tight labor market and a piece of moderately good news that beat expectations slightly and was welcomed by rising stock prices at this morning’s open. The size of the workforce is still smaller than it was on the eve of the pandemic, with the labor force participation rate about a percentage point smaller than it was in January 2020. Slightly under half of that loss is a consequence of an aging population. But still leaves a gap of 1.5 million net workers who aren’t in the workforce today but were just before the start of the pandemic.

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