Are We Seeing Joe Biden Experience Cognitive Decline in Real-Time? – The late comedian Mitch Hedberg may have summed up old photos better than anyone else in a bit where he noted, “my friend show me a photo and said, ‘here’s a picture of me when I was younger.’ Every picture is of you when you were younger.'”
It is impossible to argue with the logic, but a typical response by most people when seeing old photos is “how young” the person looks. Technology continues to serve as a window into the past.
Movies, of course, have allowed us for more than a century to see actors when they were young (or in many cases when they were even alive).
Likewise, footage from key moments of our elected officials has been preserved for all of time. However, apart from what was in documentaries or in timed recaps, much of this footage of politicians wasn’t readily accessible.
Moreover, the plethora of 24/7 news channels ensured that every moment involving lawmakers is now preserved for the world.
Online video platforms further provide an archive of our elected officials that is accessible like never before. YouTube has made it increasingly easy for anyone to not only watch old cartoons and music videos – but also to see clips of our political figures’ speeches and debates.
This actually helps explain why President Joe Biden’s mental capabilities are continually in the spotlight.
Watch the Video: Does It Prove Joe Biden Has Lost a Step?
We only need to watch the 2012 Vice Presidential Debate (you can see it here) between then-Vice President Joe Biden and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin).
The first thing that is readily apparent is that Biden looked considerably younger – he was weeks shy of his 70th birthday – but the same could be said of the debate’s moderator Martha Raddatz, who was just 59 at the time.
Biden who turned 80 in November, is moving much slower, and it could be argued he’s very much more of a grandfather figure than he was as vice president when he could have been fairly described as an older parent.
Joe Biden in Mental Decline?
Some would argue that the videos also highlight how Biden has declined mentally.
Of course, Biden has always been a gaffe machine and has long had a penchant for telling tall tales where he’s the star of the story, whether it is riding his beloved Amtrak or his time as a lifeguard confronting the local drug dealer.
However, the stories have become a lot more nonsensical, and increasingly fact-checkers will note the details don’t add up.
Yet, what is most evident in reviewing the decade-old decade with the then-future speaker of the house is how Biden gave a high-energy performance – once that was described as “part angry bar-room debater, part condescending elder uncle, part comic mime artist” – which left Ryan overwhelmed.
Biden was further described to show displays of alpha-male dominance in that debate.
Today, the condescending elder uncle isn’t just what is on display; it is present in every speech Biden gives. If he doesn’t like a question from a reporter (in those few occasions where he actually responds) he is a truly angry bar-room debater, and we’ve certainly seen his comic mime artist on display a few times as well.
In other words, the same old Biden is there – just amplified with age.
Biden does seem angrier than ever, especially if it involves former President Donald Trump.
According to the upcoming book The Fight of His Life: Inside Joe Biden’s White House – set to be published on January 17 – Biden would “let loose” on Trump whenever he showed guests around the official residence of the White House, apparently describing the former president as a “f***ing a**hole” for installing a big-screen TV and golf simulator in a room above the Oval Office. Biden had also apparently wanted to remove the Resolute Desk – a gift from Queen Victoria to President Rutherford B. Hayes – from the Oval Office as it was another sign from the Trump era. While past presidents have opted to use other desks, the Resolute Desk has been in the White House since the Clinton era.
Is it a Cognitive Decline?
Critics of Biden are quick to pounce on him. Victor Davis Hanson, distinguished fellow of the Center for American Greatness and a classicist and historian at Stanford’s Hoover Institution, wrote recently, “Biden slurs his words. He truncates sentences. He speaks in a muddled voice that often makes comprehension impossible. When questioned, he grows irate, growls and stutters.”
The truth is that Biden did much of the same back in 2012. It is just amplified today, and videos are often edited to make it seem worse.
As Jonathan Bernstein, a Bloomberg opinion columnist, noted in an op-ed for The Washington Post last year, “Biden is also constantly in meetings with members of Congress (including Republicans), military leaders and independent civil servants, interest group and party leaders, governors and mayors, and foreign leaders of friendly and unfriendly nations. To believe that he is impaired requires a belief in a massive conspiracy, in many cases against interest, by thousands of people.”
Simply put, people will see what they want to see, and it is hard to argue that it is a mental decline. Those who don’t like Biden view an old man who is likely to wander out of the White House and into traffic on Pennsylvania Avenue, while his supporters see an elder statesman whose moving a little slower.
Perhaps the answer is that all occupants should be required to take a cognitive test annually – then we’d have an answer instead of armchair speculation.
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Author Experience and Expertise: A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.
January 11, 2023 at 9:26 pm
He had two brain aneurysms, blood on the brain and two brain surgeries back in the 80s. No mention of that or concern at anytime. Robin Williams did a bit on him years ago too and hit the nail on the head about Biden.