Biden Won't Rescue a Spluttering Obama
I haven't been able to get a good comedic feel for tonight's vice presidential debate between Paul Ryan and Joe Biden.
It's easy to lampoon President Obama. He's a pretentious, long-winded, self-important bore of a snob. That's a gimme, humor-wise. But with all his gaffes, kookiness, and thinning hair plugs, Biden virtually defies lampooning. Just how do you satirize someone whose only redeeming -- almost charming -- quality is that he's the closest thing to self-satire we're ever likely to see again in the vice presidency during our lifetimes?
There may be some method to Biden's goofy madness, though, and he could very well be playing us all for suckers. After all, he's able to get away with saying and doing things that would get the rest of us shunned by even our closest friends and family. That's a rare gift.
I have a confession to make. I was so certain that Mitt Romney was going to trounce Obama last Wednesday night that I wrote a great deal of my very well-received American Thinker article announcing his triumph hours before the debate started. I couldn't have been more accurate. And no, that's not cheating or unethical. It's a perfectly legitimate tactic journalists use when facing a late-night deadline for an event that doesn't begin until late at night.
The way it works is that a journalist will write a "shell" of a story of what's likely to occur based on his advanced knowledge of the event, people, and personalities involved. After the event ends, the journalist will "tweak" the story, adding any relevant facts, details, or omissions. He will file the story with the copydesk and then dash off to nearest the bar to get his drink on early before the rest of the late-night newsroom crew files in. (You probably can tell that I've done that before -- a lot.)
Now, that tactic usually works well as long as the journalist is knowledgeable as to the subject and remains within the bounds of possibilities and ethics -- and actually covers the event. I worked at a newspaper where it didn't go so well. Our entertainment reporter covered a late-night concert featuring a highly acclaimed male concert pianist. Oh, he filed a great story, but it had one "minor" problem -- the male concert pianist had taken ill earlier that day and was replaced by a female pianist who just happened to be Asian.
The reporter's excuse was it was late and he was tired and had sat farther back than he normally did when covering concerts. He wasn't fired, though he should have been. But this was at the same newspaper where one of our reporters was found passed out cold in a crackhouse and arrested in a police drug sting. They released her the next morning after we verified (lied about, really) her claim that she was working on a story for the paper.
At any rate, based on what I know of the individual strengths and weaknesses of Obama and Romney, I could write the outcome of the next two presidential debates today and be 98 percent certain that I would be dead-on accurate. Here's a hint: decisive Romney routs.
Paul Ryan had better beware. His strongest suit is his detailed knowledge of U.S. domestic policy. Biden is not going to attack him there. Instead, Biden is going to strike at what he thinks is Ryan's weakest spot -- foreign policy. (You ever noticed our overseas interests stopped being referred to as "foreign affairs" after Bill Clinton came along? Wonder why.)
Biden will focus on diminishing Ryan's stature in an effort to cast doubt on the overall Republican ticket. You can expect Biden to try to bog Ryan down in such minutiae as: who is the substitute house boy for the third executive assistant for the vice assistant chairman for the undersecretary of the Division of Rainwater and Dirt of the Department of Mud for the nation of Who-The-Hell-Cares-Istan?
There is no need for Ryan to play that game. When Biden asks one of his what-color-is-the-sky-in-the-universe-he-lives-in questions, Ryan should flash a look of utter incredulity and pivot to what Americans most care about -- how the middle class has been "buried in the last four years," not Steve. If Ryan does that, which I fully expect him to, he will further cement what is going to be an overwhelming Republican victory, up and down the ticket, on November 6.
The Drive-By Pundit is the pen name of Perry Drake, author of two recently published e-books, The Book of Racist Democrat Quotes and "Democratic Nigger!": The Long, Racist, Bloody, Account of the Democrat Party's Hatred for Blacks. Both are available on Amazon.com. Perry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/perry.drake.10, and on Twitter @Perry_Drake.