Cleanup on Aisle 46: Joe Biden makes a mess of his 60 Minutes interview
As Barack Obama used to say: "Don't underestimate Joe's ability to f- — things up."
This brings us to Joe Biden's softball sit-down interview with 60 Minutes' Scott Pelley, which was something he ought to have been able to ace.
He actually made one mess after another, which has put his White House staff into full walkback, spin, and damage control mode.
Here are a few highlights, starting with his handling of Bidenflation:
Scott Pelley: Mr. President, as you know, last Tuesday the annual inflation rate came in at 8.3%. The stock market nosedived. People are shocked by their grocery bills. What can you do better and faster?
President Joe Biden: Well, first of all, let's put this in perspective. Inflation rate month to month was just — just an inch, hardly at all,
Scott Pelley: You're not arguing that 8.3% is good news.
President Joe Biden: No, I'm not saying it is good news. But it was 8.2% or — 8.2% before. I mean, it's not — you're ac — we act — make it sound like all of a sudden, "My god, it went to 8.2%." It's been —
Scott Pelley: It's the highest inflation rate, Mr. President, in 40 years.
President Joe Biden: I got that. But guess what we are. We're in a position where, for the last several months, it hasn't spiked. It has just barely — it's been basically even. And in the meantime, we created all these jobs and — and prices — have — have gone up, but they've come down for energy.
So in other words, he has no idea where inflation comes from, he fails to understand that 8.3% inflation is very expensive for workers, and he has no serious plan to get rid of it. He instead spun the matter as "energy prices are down" even as other prices are up, signaling that he doesn't understand that inflation is a monetary, not an energy, phenomenon, as Milton Friedman noted. And since he has no idea where inflation comes from, he believes that if he can gain control of the economy and dictate price cuts to special interests on some items, such as medical paraphernalia, inflation will go away. Doesn't work that way. and now the public can see for itself how little Joe knows. This is wretched stuff, and a strong signal to the markets to keep the selloff going.
He also went rich on the lies and gaslighting when asked about the FBI raid on his potential rival in 2024, President Trump:
Scott Pelley: Have you been briefed, sir, on the top-secret documents that were found at Mar-a-Lago?
President Joe Biden: No.
Scott Pelley: No one has come to you to warn you that important national security secrets were revealed by the storage of those documents at the former president's home?
President Joe Biden: I have not personally spoken to anyone on that — in that regard. I'm sure my administration is aware of all of that, and so is the National Security Council. But I have not.
Scott Pelley: Were you notified of the FBI's execution of a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago?
President Joe Biden: No. Not ahead of time.
Really? Pelley didn't mention it, but a federal judge found that Biden himself was indeed behind the raid as she mentioned in her ruling about the appointment of a special master to review the documents and clothing items seized in the raid.
From Conservative Treehouse:
Page #2 and Page #3 of Judge Aileen Cannon's ruling cites a quote from the DOJ own legal filing, dated May 10th, that Joe Biden ordered the National Archives and Records Administration to provide access to the FBI to review the Trump records. Note the quotation marks:
On May 10, 2022, NARA informed Plaintiff that it would proceed with "provid[ing] the FBI access to the records in question, as requested by the incumbent President, beginning as early as Thursday, May 12, 2022." [citation]
Biden spewed a whopper with that one, and it was on Pelley to question him on it, but being a member of the fawning media, he didn't.
Here are a couple that got the staff springing into walkback action, as noted by RedState.
From the CBS transcript:
Scott Pelley: Mr. President, first Detroit Auto Show in three years. Is the pandemic over?
President Joe Biden: The pandemic is over. We still have a problem with COVID. We're still doing a lotta work on it. It's — but the pandemic is over. If you notice, no one's wearing masks. Everybody seems to be in pretty good shape. And so I think it's changing. And I think this is a perfect example of it.
The staff had to get cracking on spinning the matter, given that it was delivered without warning, and that presented problems for Joe Biden's unilateral student loan forgiveness program, as well as his open borders policies, as RedState noted.
Another one was on Taiwan:
U.S. policy since 1979 has been to recognize Taiwan as part of China, but remain silent on whether the U.S. military would defend the democratic government there. This is among the places where our interview runs into controversy.
Scott Pelley: What should Chinese President Xi know about your commitment to Taiwan?
President Joe Biden: We agree with what we signed onto a long time ago. And that there's one China policy, and Taiwan makes their own judgments about their independence. We are not moving — we're not encouraging their being independent. We're not — that — that's their decision.
Scott Pelley: But would U.S. Forces defend the island?
President Joe Biden: Yes, if in fact there was an unprecedented attack.
After our interview a White House official told us U.S. policy has not changed. Officially, the U.S. will not say whether American forces would defend Taiwan. But the commander-in-chief had a view of his own.
Scott Pelley: So unlike Ukraine, to be clear, sir, U.S. Forces, U.S. men and women would defend Taiwan in the event of a Chinese invasion?
President Joe Biden: Yes.
Plenty of cleanup on that one, and even 60 Minutes knew enough to get word from the rest of the White House to say that the U.S. view had not changed. Seems Joe doesn't know what he's doing on longtime U.S. policy, and 60 Minutes wanted to "save" him.
As Bonchie at RedState noted, the most telling mess Joe made was in Pelley's question about Biden's fitness for office:
Scott Pelley: Which leads to my next question. You are more aware of this than anyone. Some people ask whether you are fit for the job. And when you hear that, I wonder what you think.
President Joe Biden: Watch me. And ma — honest to God, that's all I think. Watch me. If you think I don't have the energy level or the mental acuity, then — then, you know, that's one thing. It's another thing, you just watch and — and, you know, keep my schedule. Do what I'm doing. I — I think that — you know — I don't — when I sit down with our NATO allies and keep 'em together, I don't have 'em saying, "Wait a minute, w — how — how old are you? What are you — what say?" You know, I mean, it's a matter of, you know, that old expression: The proof of the pudding's in the eating. I mean, I — I — I respect the fact that people would say, you know, "You're old." And — but I think it relates to h — how much energy you have, and whether or not the job you're doing is one consistent with what any person of any age would be able to do.
Scott Pelley: How would you say your mental focus is?
President Joe Biden: Oh, it's focused. I'd say it's — I think it's — I — I haven't — look, I have trouble even mentioning, even saying to myself, my own head, the number of years. I no more think of myself as being as old as I am than fly. I mean, it's just not — I haven't — observed anything in terms of — there's not things I don't do now that I did before, whether it's physical, or mental, or anything else.
Nobody can top Bonchie at RedState's observations on that one:
When the president says "watch me," does he not realize we all have been watching him since he took office and we definitively don't like what we see? Perhaps Biden has deluded himself to the point where he truly believes he's done a good job, and if so, he should definitely spend a little more time outside of Delaware.
That's quite a string of errors and messes for just one interview. Based on this interview, it's pretty obvious to the public why he doesn't give many interviews.
But it's also pretty indicative of how inchoate and foolish Biden really is. How is it that Biden can score an interview with the softest of the softball players at 60 Minutes, with the fawningest of the fawning interviewers, and still blow it?
It's not just a bad night for Joe; it's the entire pattern of the administration. Don't forget that when Kamala Harris sat down to give an interview to NBC's Lester Holt about her handing of the border crisis as its czar, Harris made one blunder after another to her fawning interviewer.
If this is how badly they do with fawners and flatterers and lickspittles, all of whom will do anything to make them look good, how would these people handle a real interviewer with real questions, of the kind the public is answering? They can't even handle the fawners without making messes for themselves and their administration. Imagine them in a room with real journalists.
It goes to show that the Biden administration really has no business being in office or power, simply on competence grounds alone.
Image: Twitter screen shot.