A Few Comments on Last Night's Speech
A laugh-line falls flat, and a re-calibrated BS meter reveals truths that Biden doesn't believe...
There’s no shortage of commentary on President Brandon’s State of the Union address last night, so I’ll just add a couple of things.
A number of people have already commented that it was more like a campaign stump speech than a State of the Union address; it was far more about what the president planned to do, was gonna do, than what he had actually done.
That shouldn’t surprise anyone. Joe Biden has built his entire, almost half-a-century long career on what he was gonna do, rather than on any actual accomplishments.
I want to zero in on his brief remarks on gun control. He couldn’t resist the opportunity to crack wise, but his oh-so-clever little quip fell as flat as it deserved to. Calling for a ban on “assault weapons and high-capacity magazines with 100 rounds,” he asked, “You think the deer are wearing Kevlar vests?”
(It was intended for a laugh, and it reflected a rhetorical theme that we’ve heard before. I remember Andrew Cuomo declaring “You don’t need an AR-15 to hunt deer!” Any time you hear a similar remark, you know that the person expressing it has not a clue about the rationale behind the Second Amendment.)
In the fleeting moment of silence that followed Biden’s “Kevlar vest” line, I hoped that all those listening were having the same thought I was: “Uh, never mind, Joe, that the Second Amendment doesn’t exist to protect our right to hunt deer; as it happens, right this minute, on the other side of the world, the Russkis invading Ukraine may actually be wearing Kevlar vests! And that illustrates, better than anything, why America’s Founders intended to enshrine the right of citizens to keep and bear the very kind of arms that would afford them a fighting chance against an attacking military (whether that military represents a foreign power or our own government turned tyrannical).”
(Whenever someone posits that the Second Amendment doesn’t protect the right of citizens to keep and bear “weapons of war,” I love to quote one of our lesser-known Founders, Tench Coxe, a political economist and a delegate from Pennsylvania to the Continental Congress. When asked just what sort of weaponry the citizens should keep and bear, he replied, “Every terrible implement of the soldier.”)
Biden followed his failed laugh line with a call to “Repeal the liability shield that makes gun manufacturers the only industry in America that cannot be sued. The only one.” And that was predicated on a brazen lie, because the truth is that the firearms industry is far from the only industry that enjoys liability protections. And even those protections are hardly all-encompassing.
The 2005 Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act does prevent gun manufacturers from being held liable for the criminal use of their products, in the same way that automobile manufacturers cannot be held liable for damages, death or injury caused by their products — unless, of course, such damage, death or injury is the result of negligence in manufacture resulting in a defective product. And Remington Arms is currently facing a lawsuit that claims the company’s marketing practices were responsible, in part, for the mass shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School!
And any discussion of companies that enjoy liability protection has to include a mention of the protection enjoyed by vaccine manufacturers, who by law cannot be sued for death or injury caused by their products.
So Biden’s claim that the gun industry is the only industry that cannot be sued is patently untrue.
But there really weren’t all that many outright lies in Biden’s speech. I often joke that I watch such speeches with my Bravo Sierra meter hooked up, and that the needle often gets a good workout.
For last night’s speech, however, I would’ve had to make an adjustment to my meter. Fans of “Seinfeld” will remember George Costanza’s philosophy that “It’s not a lie if you believe it!”
There were any number of instances in last night’s speech in which Biden said something that was hardly untrue, but which a differently-calibrated meter would have indicated that he, himself, did not believe. The best example was when he said, “Folks, if we are to advance liberty and justice, we need to secure our border and fix the immigration system.”
That one made me laugh out loud. Anyone who has paid the slightest attention to Biden’s border and immigration policies — particularly the way, almost immediately upon assuming office, he reversed the policies of his predecessor, policies that were proving most effective — has to know that Biden cannot possibly believe in the need to “secure our border and fix the immigration system.”
In addition, every single time that Biden spoke of how we need to put party differences aside and to come together and unite as Americans, the needle on my BS meter, calibrated to reveal statements that may have been true but which Biden clearly does not believe, would have pegged into the red zone!