Sunday 25th of October 2020

a convertible-loving average joe for an average middle-of-the-road, full-blown russian-hating, president...

joe
I guess the following article in the New York Times was written in praise of Joe Biden, but to say the least it frightens the pants off me...



As a young man, and as a student at the University of Delaware, Joseph R. Biden Jr., settled into the polished but unpretentious identity that would become his political brand.

THE LONG RUN

Joe Biden’s Non-Radical 1960s


Trump has called Biden a tool of leftist agitators. Friends say that has never much been his way, even as a young man surrounded by protest.


As a young man, and as a student at the Universit
y of Delaware, Joseph R. Biden Jr., settled into the polished but unpretentious identity that would become his political brand


Joseph R. Biden Jr. marched into adulthood in Bass Weejuns penny loafers.

He was known around the University of Delaware campus as the teetotaling semi-jock with a sweater around his neck — the type who seemed more consumed with date nights than civil rights and expected a certain standard of decorum from his companions, once threatening to break off an evening with a woman who lit a cigarette in his borrowed convertible.

And when Mr. Biden and his friends from Syracuse University law school happened upon antiwar protesters at the chancellor’s office — the kind of Vietnam-era demonstration that galvanized so much of their generation — his group stepped past with disdain. They were going for pizza.

More than a half-century later, as Mr. Biden seeks the White House with a pledge to soothe the nation’s wounds and lower its collective temperature, he has been left to deflect a curious charge at the center of President Trump’s re-election effort: Mr. Biden, the president insists, is eager to do the far-left bidding of violent agitators and other assorted radicals.

“They’ve got you wrapped around their finger, Joe,” Mr. Trump taunted at their first debate.

Mr. Biden, a 77-year-old moderate who cites John Wayne movies and long-dead Senate peers, has generally defaulted to a visceral defense: Look at me.

“Ask yourself,” he implored voters in a recent address. “Do I look like a radical socialist with a soft spot for rioters?”

He does not now, friends from his youth say, and he did not then — in spite of, and perhaps partly because of, the decade in which he came of age.

Amid simmering protests, generational division and defining disputes about the course of American life, Mr. Biden was a young man keen on bringing a bit of a 1950s sensibility into the 1960s — a nice-house-on-a-cul-de-sac kind of guy who spent his weekends as a 20-something husband scouting available real estate from his Corvette.

There is a version of these years that Mr. Biden prefers to share publicly: how he was captivated by the civil rights movement, coming to understand the racial divide as a teenage lifeguard in a Black neighborhood of Wilmington, Del.; how he was brokenhearted by the murder of his heroes, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Kennedy brothers; how he was motivated chiefly by an altruistic call to service.If much of this accounting is plainly true in the abstract, those who knew him say, it also elides some finer points of Mr. Biden’s arc: his boundless personal ambition, his canny relationship-building as a political novice and, quite often, his conspicuous psychic distance from the activist fervor of the times as he plotted a path to office.

“He had other priorities,” Gilbert J. Sloan, a longtime supporter who was active in Delaware’s 1960s protest movements, said of Mr. Biden’s outlook then. “He was very young and ambitious.”

A review of how Mr. Biden navigated this period of national upheaval — drawn from interviews with more than a dozen friends, classmates and others who have known the Democratic nominee across the decades — at once lays bare the implausibility of Mr. Trump’s attack and supplies an enduring window into Mr. Biden’s own theories of social movements. Incremental progress is still progress, he has long believed, and within-the-system change is still change.

If today’s activists have at times viewed Mr. Biden skeptically through this season of unrest, questioning whether he can connect with the passion in the streets when he has rarely shown passion in the streets himself, his early history would appear to reinforce their doubts.

This is a man whose institutionalist instincts seemed to harden even before he belonged to any political institutions — and who has never shown much patience for protests that turn destructive or unruly.

“That’s the way he views activism,” said Bob Markel, a friend since the 1950s. “Occupying an office of a dean or something like that is not his style.”


It never has been. As the Vietnam War reshaped lives across many less-than-affluent families like his own, with casualties and moral outrage mounting especially among young adults a few years behind him, Mr. Biden eluded both the conflict and the attendant anger. He received five student draft deferments during the war and was kept from service after a physical exam in 1968 because he had asthma as a teenager, according to his campaign. (Mr. Trump, now 74, received five deferments in all, including a medical deferment for bone spurs.)

Mr. Biden has said he viewed the Vietnam War “in terms of stupidity, not morality,” doubting its wisdom but never feverishly enough to chant about it.

“I’m not big on flak jackets and tie-dye shirts,” he told reporters in 1987, distinguishing himself from some politically minded contemporaries. “Other people marched. I ran for office.”


‘Average Irish Guy’

It can be almost impossible now to imagine Mr. Biden as a young man — or, at least, a younger man than he was when he first reached Washington, as a 30-year-old senator shattered by the car crash that killed his first wife, Neilia, and their baby daughter.

But to those who met him before his best-known trials and triumphs, the Joe Biden who wandered campus in a tasteful button-down and chinos remains an indelible character, settling into the identity that would become his self-styled political brand: polished but unpretentious, a natural leader with few obvious preternatural gifts.

“He was an average Irish guy. His father was a car salesman, for God’s sake,” said Fred Sears, a friend from the University of Delaware. “A good-looking guy with a gift of gab.”


The glad-handing started early.

An aspiring football running back and amiable freshman in 1961, Mr. Biden was elected president of his class, moving quickly to flatter his constituents.

“He came up to me, shook my hand,” recalled Brian Barrabee, a football player who lived in the same dorm, “and he said, ‘Brian, I’d like to thank you for not running for class president because if you had, you would have beaten me.’ It was his way of getting people to feel good.”

By his own account, Mr. Biden’s most resonant exposure to the dominant political issues of the day came well off campus. He has said he once walked out of a Wilmington restaurant that refused to serve a Black student from his high school, a recollection that Mr. Markel corroborated.

And at 19, Mr. Biden worked as a lifeguard in a largely Black section of Wilmington in 1962.

He has said he took the job after absorbing images of the civil rights fight on television and realizing he had few relationships with Black people, suggesting he came to understand injustice most acutely by speaking to swimmers about the prejudices they faced.

“What he learned from us is that we didn’t have what everybody else had,” said Richard Smith, a longtime civil rights activist who met Mr. Biden that summer as an adolescent. “He got his schooling at the swimming pool.”

Mr. Biden’s formal schooling, friends say, could feel less connected to the wider national tumult.

Mr. Barrabee said the campus was not a “hotbed of political activity,” describing much of the student body as “suburban kids from Wilmington, Del., southern Delaware area, who just wanted to go to college.”

Mr. Biden did not drink — “there are enough alcoholics in my family,” he has said — and he did not smoke. But he had a way of finding trouble.
He has said he was placed on probation for hosing down a resident adviser with a fire extinguisher. He once paid a covert visit to a romantic interest and left a friend, his lookout, to take the fall with the campus police, according to a transcript of Mr. Biden’s eulogy for the man in 2004.

Mr. Biden has said his worrisome grades sidelined his football career. Academic struggles kept him from sticking with student government as well, Mr. Sears said.

But Mr. Biden’s father perhaps inadvertently assisted in his distracting social agenda: Cars were not permitted on campus, Mr. Sears said, but the elder Mr. Biden’s job allowed Mr. Biden easy access to loaner vehicles for weekend excursions.

“Every weekend, somehow, Joe ended up with a car,” Mr. Sears said of his friend’s advantages in courtship. “It was always a convertible. Besides being very cool and dressing right, showing up in a convertible he had us all beat eight ways from Sunday.”


Read more:

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/17/us/politics/joe-biden-college-1960s.html

"I’m not big on flak jackets and tie-dye shirts"...

FORMER VICE PRESIDENT Joe Biden this week continued to maintain the fiction that he stood against the war in Iraq “the very moment” it began in 2003. The claim has been easily taken apart by fact checkers — Biden publicly supported the war before, during, and after the invasion — but a 1998 Senate hearing sheds additional light on his determination to confront Iraq over weapons of mass destruction.

In 1998, U.N. weapons inspector Scott Ritter resigned in protest and accused the international community of not giving him and his colleagues the support they needed to carry out their job in Iraq, which had agreed in 1991 to destroy its chemical weapons stockpile. He was called to testify before the Senate in September 1998, where Biden, who was then the highest-ranking Democrat on the Foreign Relations committee, grilled him. In the course of the questions, Biden made revealing remarks about where he stood on regime change in Iraq. 

Biden thanked Ritter for forcing senators to “come to our milk,” by which he meant forcing them to make a decision on what to do about Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and his alleged weapons of mass destruction program. 

Biden told Ritter that no matter how thorough the inspections, the only way to eliminate the threat was to remove Saddam Hussein. “The primary policy is to keep sanctions in place to deny Saddam the billions of dollars that would allow him to really crank up his program, which neither you nor I believe he’s ever going to abandon as long as he’s in place,” Biden said, characterizing former President Bill Clinton’s administration’s policy. “You and I believe, and many of us believe here, as long as Saddam is at the helm, there is no reasonable prospect you or any other inspector is ever going to be able to guarantee that we have rooted out, root and branch, the entirety of Saddam’s program relative to weapons of mass destruction. You and I both know, and all of us here really know, and it’s a thing we have to face, that the only way, the only way we’re going to get rid of Saddam Hussein is we’re going to end up having to start it alone — start it alone — and it’s going to require guys like you in uniform to be back on foot in the desert taking this son of a — taking Saddam down,” Biden said. “You know it and I know it.”

 

Read more:

https://theintercept.com/2020/01/07/joe-biden-iraq-war-history/

 

Sorry, Joe, we knew that the war on Saddam was a crock.

As a draft-dodger,  Joe Biden was never "big on flak jackets and tie-dye shirts" for himself... but he did not mind sending "others" to war. Biden is a PROVEN liar and a WARMONGER. 

 

 

See: http://www.yourdemocracy.net.au/drupal/node/11276?destination=node%2F11276

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