Monday, June 28, 2010

Poor ol' Joe

The old saying goes that there are only two things we can be sure of in this life: death and taxes. I would add a third: if you prick Joe Biden, there will be a response - and not likely a pretty one.

Call Joe Biden anything you like, but understand that his public performance likely since the beginning of his public service career has shown that Mr. Biden has a quick wit, maybe a short temper, and a rather sharp tongue. It has nothing to do with his status as a Democrat or as vice president of the nation. It is just a matter of what kind of person he is and how his mind functions. He may enjoy some light banter from time to time and may have a hearty sense of humor (I don't know the man personally), but from my observations from afar he seems to have little patience for what he would deem nonsense, and he virtually grows and shows fangs when he is challenged or confronted. It is who he is, for good or bad.

One element I might add to the volatile mix, however, is the length of his public service that may be indicative of what the nation is seeing spewing forth not only from the nation's capital but from our state capitals as well. Public "servants" lose that sense of humble service after spending too many years in public office. Too many become somewhat detached, bold, and often downright arrogant. How many years is "too many" would be anyone's guess and a matter of perspective, I suppose, but I have duly noted that every politician I've voted for or against at election time has been the meek and humble servant while asking for my vote. After that time passes, however, and the election (or reelection) is secure, they morph back into what they truly are. Again, whether for good or for bad is a matter of perspective AND perception.

I would suggest that folks get off Joe Biden's back about this very insignificant non-issue. There have been suggestions in the past that President Obama might have to put a leash and muzzle on the VP, but I would ask whether others might muzzle the president the next time he feels compelled to talk down the US while on foreign soil or when he tries to take the "high road" and makes lofty, "kumbya" demands when it comes to political rhetoric aimed at him while still feeling free to take cheap shots at the GOP or continue to blame former President Bush rather than "man up" and take the reins as chief of state himself.

I would like to imagine how I may have responded if the VP had said something like that to me, but one would never really know until faced with the same situation under the same circumstances; face-to-face with the vice president of the United States AND with TV cameras recording every word and movement. In the end the custard shop manager came off as somewhat more "presidential" than the VP himself - which says a lot about the state of our nation and what we are willing to tolerate. There is nothing new here, and there is certainly no issue - Biden is who Biden is, and consistently so. We should not feign such "shock". It just indicates once more how clueless most of us really are when it comes to picking politicians.

No comments: