President Calvin Coolidge was famous for being a man of few words. It won him the nickname “Silent Cal.” Whether apocryphal or not, there is a story that a woman seated next to him said, “I bet my husband that I could get you to say more than two words.” To which Coolidge responded, “you lose.”
In terms of having nothing to say, former Vice President Biden makes Coolidge seem like a chatterbox. Biden speaks out very rarely – and when he does, he still has nothing to say. He simply spews out platitudes – promising to fix everything for everybody. What is conspicuous by its absence is the “how.”
Biden’s campaign strategy is to remain hidden – believing that Trump is best handled by other Democrats and especially his loyal press. The Big Seven media outlets (ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, New York Times and Washington Post) are now effectively operating as the Democratic National Committee’s advertising agency – with special attention on the Biden for President campaign.
Biden can afford to stay in hiding because the folks in the Fourth Estate are fighting his battle for him. While Biden hunkers down in his residential safe room, the elitist press is on a 24/7 cycle of attack ads. Oh, I know that they call their coverage “news” – and those specials “documentaries” and “town hall meetings” — but they are all essentially infomercials.
It has become so one-sided and so mendacious that any suggestion that the elitist east coast newsies are fair and balanced reporters is utter nonsense – and those who claim that they are just reporting news are partisan liars or hopelessly gullible.
Politically, of course, it is a good strategy for Biden – maybe the only potentially winning strategy. In a way, Biden is the example of the old biblical admonition, “Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.” That was later commonly popularized as, “It is better to remain silent at the risk of being thought a fool, than to talk and remove all doubt of it.”
One cannot deny that when Biden takes to the platform – away from press releases and carefully scripted speeches – Biden does have a propensity to make a fool of himself. They have become famously known as “gaffes.” At this point, it will be up to others — campaign surrogates and the media — to “win one for the gaffer.”
While COVID-19 is a scourge on humanity, it has become a blessing on Biden and Democrats. It is the excuse Biden needed to keep a low profile. But will it work?
So far, it has. The more Biden says nothing – other than tossing an occasion pollical hand grenade over the wall – the better he looks. This seems to be reflected in the current polls that show him with a significant lead.
Biden’s face does appear on the television screen occasionally. He does issue prepared remarks of a general nature – mostly ad hominin attacks on Trump – what is woefully missing is … content. Biden does not lay out specific ways he would deal with the issues of the day. Oh sure, he talks of his plan for this and that, but not so much of the details – the all-important “how.”
There is a very simple reason for that. Most of the radical proposals currently being advanced by the Democratic Party are not very popular with the folks in fly-over America. The return to a high-tax regulatory federal government … open borders … the old failed “establishment” diplomacy … the destructive Green New Deal … and the endorsement of mob rule … are largely rejected by the American public.
If Biden and the Democrats can distract attention from their political platform and make Trump’s personality the deciding issue, they believe they can win in November. If there is a substantive and vigorous debate on the actual issues – and the relative positions of the radical left Democratic Party and the more conservative Republican Party – Democrats know they will lose.
So, what is the strategy? To lock Biden – along with all those issues – in the candidate’s basement. But with several months to go, Trump has time to drag Biden out of his bunker and make him speak … exposing the dangerous foolishness he represents. Trump needs to build public pressure on Biden to show up. For example, will Biden engage Trump in a series of debates? I am dubious.
In 1944, the Democratic Party – with the help of their media pals – hid the fact that President Roosevelt was gravely ill and would not survive even the first year of his fourth term. The real FDR was sequestered in the White House – and then at the spa, he owned in Warm Springs, Georgia, where he died after less than three months in office. The voters of 1944 never knew the reality of the man they were re-electing. It appears to be happening again.
Yes, unlike any time in the past, the ability of the Democrats to win an election depends on how little the American people will see, hear from or know their standard bearer. There are serious questions as to whether Biden is physically and philosophically fit to be President of the United States at this time. The last thing Democrats want the public to discover is that he is not –that he has neither the stamina nor the right policies.
So, there ‘tis.