Caitlin Johnstone lines up video clips to show how narrative managers are applying the wrong word to the former vice president’s problem.
It’s very bizarre and dissonant how there are currently two separate and non-overlapping lines of criticism going on against the campaign of establishment-anointed Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. There are the perfectly accurate criticisms regarding the right-wing, militaristic policy positions of the politician Joe Biden used to be, and then there are the equally accurate criticisms of Biden’s handlers and Democratic Party leadership for wheeling out the dementia-addled husk of a man he currently is to run for the world’s most powerful elected office.
These two debates do not interweave, because they are not relevant to one another. It doesn’t matter what political positions a dementia victim once had; what matters is taking care of him and keeping him away from hazards, like sharp objects and nuclear launch codes. It’s impossible to know what actual political convictions still remain held within a mind that can no longer lucidly string thoughts together anyway.
I hate doing this. I hate repeatedly writing about the obvious and undeniable fact that an old man is exhibiting obvious and undeniable symptoms of incipient dementia. It isn’t fun, and it doesn’t feel good. But the alternative is lying down and allowing the Democratic party and its allied media to gaslight people into believing it’s not a thing, as they are doing currently.
At a certain point there needs to be a serious and empathetic conversation about Biden's relatively frequent, confused, irritable inability to complete coherent thoughts. It's not about a stutter. Watching him speak a mere four years ago makes that clear. Hope this happens soon!
— Cody Johnston (@drmistercody) March 5, 2020
If you do a live Twitter search for the word “stutter,” you will as of this writing see that word being tweeted multiple times per minute on the social media platform as Democrats scramble to defend Biden from people who are accurately highlighting the indisputable fact that the former vice president is showing signs of cognitive decline. In my interactions with Biden supporters over the last 24 hours I’ve had this irrelevant word suddenly start getting thrown at me, because narrative managers in the mainstream media and the Biden campaign have been aggressively promoting the talking point that Biden’s increasingly frequent neurological misfirings on the campaign trail are actually the result of a longstanding speech impediment.
This is false. While it is true that Biden has periodically exhibited signs of a stutter, the inability to hold on to his own train of thought, forgetting where he is and who he’s with, grossly incorrect use of language, and inappropriate behavior are not symptoms of a stutter.
Here is the Mayo Clinic’s list of symptoms for a stutter, also known as a stammer:
- Difficulty starting a word, phrase or sentence
- Prolonging a word or sounds within a word
- Repetition of a sound, syllable or word
- Brief silence for certain syllables or words, or pauses within a word (broken word)
- Addition of extra words such as “um” if difficulty moving to the next word is anticipated
- Excess tension, tightness, or movement of the face or upper body to produce a word
- Anxiety about talking
- Limited ability to effectively communicate
Here is the Mayo Clinic’s list of dementia symptoms:
- Memory loss, which is usually noticed by a spouse or someone else
- Difficulty communicating or finding words
- Difficulty with visual and spatial abilities, such as getting lost while driving
- Difficulty reasoning or problem-solving
- Difficulty handling complex tasks
- Difficulty with planning and organizing
- Difficulty with coordination and motor functions
- Confusion and disorientation
Clearly, the symptoms of the speech impediment are very distinct from the symptoms of a degenerative neurological disorder. What follows are dozens of examples suggesting the latter, most of which were compiled by the Twitter user @KoenSwinkels. You may be absolutely certain that Trump will not hesitate to highlight this growing mountain of evidence should Democratic Party leadership successfully install Biden as the nominee; in fact both Trump and his Fox News cheerleaders are doing so already.
Joe Biden is Jeb Bush plus dementia. Trump will be far less charitable with his symptoms than I am here, and if he’s nominated the president will make certain this story dominates news headlines from the convention until November. Anyone who wants Trump out of office should fiercely oppose Biden’s nomination.
1. “Make sure you have the record player on at night… make sure the kids hear words.”
Everyone talked about Biden’s bizarre call for families to make use of an archaic audio technology in response to a debate question about slavery, and some criticized his paternalistic suggestion that black Americans need to be taught how to raise their children correctly, but hardly anyone made a fuss about the fact that his entire answer was also a rambling, incoherent word salad.
It’s easy to overlook linguistic peculiarities when they’re spoken, so I made a verbatim transcript of Biden’s complete answer, exactly as he spoke it. There are no typos. Read it carefully, resisting the urge to mentally re-word it in order to make it make sense:
“Well they have to deal with the — Look, there is institutional segregation in this country. And from the time I got involved I started dealing with that. Redlining. Banks. Making sure that we’re in a position where — Look, talk about education. I propose that what we take is those very poor schools, the Title 1 schools, triple the amount of money we spend from 15 to 45 billion a year. Give every single teacher a raise that equal raise to getting out — the sixty-thousand dollar level.
“Number two: make sure that we bring into the help the — the student, the, the teachers deal with the problems that come from home. The problems that come from home. We need — We have one school psychologist for every fifteen hundred kids in America today. It’s crazy. The teachers are reca — Now, I’m married to a teacher. My deceased wife is a teacher. They have every problem coming to them. We have make sure that every single child does in fact have three, four, and five year-olds go to school — school, not daycare. School. We bring social workers into homes of parents to help them deal with how to raise their children. It’s not that they don’t wanna help, they don’t want — they don’t know quite what to do. Play the radio, make sure the television, the — ‘scuse me, make sure you have the record player on at night, the-the-the-the phone, make sure the kids hear words. A kid coming from a very poor school, a very poor background, will hear four million words fewer spoken by the time they get there.”
Compare this muddle-headed mess, and all the following subsequent examples, to the crisp, forceful way Biden used to speak:
Or even just a few years ago:
Joe Biden explains why Bernie Sanders is the best to beat Trump.
(Yes, this is Joe 4 years ago.. I know it's strange watching him talk in full sentences.) pic.twitter.com/5zhs1eYvFu
— Aisha Sharna (@SharnaAisha) March 4, 2020
3. “Super Thursday”
4. “I’m a Democratic candidate for the United States Senate. Look me over, if you like what you see help out, if not vote for the other Bi- gimme a look though okay?”
This is so sad.
Here @JoeBiden says to the crowd in South Carolina that he is "running for the United States Senate" and that if they don't like him they can "vote for the other Biden."
I honestly wish he would've retired & not subjected himself to the rigors of this campaign. pic.twitter.com/mygFnsrdjC
— Shaun King (@shaunking) February 25, 2020
Fact check: Biden has not been a candidate for the United States Senate in a great many years, and is in fact running for the presidency.
5. “Alright Chuck!”
BIDEN: “Alright Chuck”
WALLACE: “It’s Chris but anyway..”
How many Biden Gaffes have there been this week?
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) March 1, 2020
Fact check: Chris. Chris Wallace.
6. “Right here in the state of North South Carolina.”
Fact check: Not a state.
7. Randomly biting his wife’s finger.
Fact check: Don’t do that, Joe.
8. Worked with Deng Xiaoping, who died 23 years ago, on the Paris Climate Accord during the Obama administration.
9. “Poor kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids.”
10. Whatever the hell this is.
11. We’ll increase healthcare premiums and make sure care is not quality, only affordable.
12. “Look, fat, look, here’s the deal.”
13. “My deceased son was the Attorney General of the United States.”
— ?Becca ???? (@Becca4Bernie) March 1, 2020
Beau Biden was only the Attorney General of Delaware.
14. Being aggressive and inappropriate with Iraq war veterans, wrongly insinuating that his son died in the war.
U.S. veterans recently confronted Biden over his support for the Iraq invasion, one saying “My friends are dead because of your policies.”
“So’s my son,” Biden replied. “He was in Iraq, okay? For a year. Not that it matters, right?”
“I’m not going after your son,” the veteran said.
“You better not,” Biden replied.
Biden’s son was in Iraq from 2008 to 2009. He died in 2015, of cancer.
15. This incoherent word salad.
Anyway, good time to remind everyone that Joe Biden has dementia. pic.twitter.com/xETlMd46Qc
— 29 U.S.C. § 157 (@OrganizingPower) March 1, 2020
Here’s a transcript of an answer Biden gave to a question at a town hall. Read through it, resisting the urge to mentally revise it into something more coherent:
“And so I was saying that, and what they turned around and said, Joe Biden said, in effect, they said, that Joe Biden said that what he was told, that what, that what the white supremacists argue, that we have no problem, that our, our, our basic English jurisprudential system is not the problem. The problem is those countries like Africa and Asia and those places, they’re the reason why we have all these problems. So they turn it around to make it sound like that, and by the way, the title of the article is, was, is the Washington Post ‘The Deceptively (indecipherable) of Joe Biden Singles, Signals What Is Coming’ and that is that’s a whole bunch of lies. The generic point I’m making here is that, what has happened is that, I know we’re going to get in to, whomever the nominee is of the Democratic Party, is going to have a plethora of lies told about him or her, and misrepresentations and this went on the internet, this edited article, it got retweeted by some press people and then they realized it was edited to make it look like something not… white supremacists, see, Biden’s acknowledging that the problem here is that that all those folks, all those minority folks are the problem. And so, in essence. And so they corrected, they corrected. You’re going to see a lot more of it. You’re going to see a lot more of not only my statements being taken out of context, and lied about, or altered, you’re going to see whomever the Democratic nominee is because that’s how this guy operates. Now. Whether or not I can win?”
16. “We choose truth over facts.”
17. “150 million people have been killed since 2007 when Bernie voted to exempt the gun manufacturers from liability.”
This would be about half the population of the United States. Pretty sure that would’ve made bigger headlines.
18. Confusing Theresa May with Margaret Thatcher.
He only missed by 29 years!! ?
Biden mixes up British PM Theresa May with Margaret Thatcher, who left office in 1990 https://t.co/H1wiDRY47A
— David Wohl (@DavidWohl) May 5, 2019
19. Confusing Angela Merkel with Margaret Thatcher.
20. “You’re a lying dog-faced pony soldier.”
21. Rambling confused gibberish, including saying Robert F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. were assassinated in the late 1970s.
Both men were assassinated in 1968.
22. Fix the problem of violence against women by “punching at it and punching at it and punching at it.”
23. Implementing a childcare tax credit would “put 720 million women back in the workforce.”
This would be more than double the entire U.S. population.
24. Thought he was in Vermont when he was in New Hampshire.
25. Confused New Hampshire and Nevada.
— CaseStudyQB (@CaseStudyQB) February 12, 2020
26. Said he was vice president during the Parkland shooting.
Biden left the office of the vice presidency in January 2017. The Parkland shooting was February 2018.
27. Said 1976 when he meant 2014.
28. Said he’s looking forward to “appointing the first African American woman to the United States Senate.”
Joe Biden is looking forward to ‘appointing’ the first African American woman to the Senate.
First, since when are senators appointed?
Second, Carol Braun was the first African American woman senator in 1993.
Third, Joe Biden’s repeated gaffes make him unfit for the office! pic.twitter.com/YCThCORGQM
— Andrew Pollack (@AndrewPollackFL) February 28, 2020
Nobody “appoints” senators; they’re elected. The first African American woman in the U.S. Senate took office in 1993.
29. “Go to Joe 30330 and help me in this fight.”
I beg your pardon? pic.twitter.com/sO6FU3QW4X
— Axios (@axios) August 1, 2019
Biden apparently received instructions from his team to tell debate viewers to text “Joe” to 30330, but these directions were too complicated for him. He wound up sending viewers to a random empty URL which was subsequently bought up by a Buttigieg supporter.
30. Made, then dropped, claim that he was arrested in South Africa while trying to visit Nelson Mandela in prison.
Biden's fake Mandela story would have been a week-long news disaster for him back when anyone still had bandwidth and standards https://t.co/ESdcjChPsQ
— Tom Scocca (@tomscocca) February 27, 2020
31. “Clipping coupons at the stock market.”
That’s not a thing, Joe.
32. Confused his wife and his sister.
33. Jill Biden’s face revealing a flash freakout when he starts forgetting what he’s saying.
Joe Biden FORGOT what he was saying AGAIN.
— Andrew Jerell Jones (@sluggahjells) March 4, 2020
34. Claimed he had the support of the “only” African American woman that had ever been elected to the senate, while the other one was standing on the stage with him.
35. “Why why why why why why why!”
36. Referred to Bernie Sanders as “the president,” then, still unable to remember his name, called him “my friend Vermont.”
37. Also called Cory Booker “the president.”
38. Repeatedly forgot Obama’s name, called him “President… My Boss.”
That’s it for now. Let me know if I missed any good ones; I’ll probably keep this updated with all the latest neurological misfirings until this discussion goes mainstream like it should already be.
Caitlin Johnstone is a rogue journalist, poet, and utopia prepper who publishes regularly at Medium. Follow her work on Facebook, Twitter, or her website. She has a podcast and a book, “Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers.”
This article was re-published with permission.
The views expressed are solely those of the author and may or may not reflect those of Consortium News.
Please Donate to Consortium News.
Before commenting please read Robert Parry’s Comment Policy. Allegations unsupported by facts, gross or misleading factual errors and ad hominem attacks, and abusive or rude language toward other commenters or our writers will not be published. If your comment does not immediately appear, please be patient as it is manually reviewed. For security reasons, please refrain from inserting links in your comments, which should not be longer than 300 words.