Obama Humiliates Biden

W.J. Astore

In a sad spectacle, former President Barack Obama visited the White House and humiliated his former VP, Joe Biden, as this video shows:

Who cares, right? But I do want to say a few things about this:

  1. Obama stands revealed here as a total narcissist as he basks in the applause and approval of White House political operatives while Joe Biden stands outside the circle of joy, looking lost and insignificant.
  2. Obama’s “joke” of addressing a sitting president as “Vice President” was unintentionally revealing of Biden’s lack of power within the White House and his own party.
  3. I’m not surprised Obama treated Biden in this humiliating manner. Obama intervened in 2020 and made Biden the nominee for the Democratic Party. Recall how he got both Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg to drop out before Super Tuesday, thereby boosting Biden’s vote in his race against Bernie Sanders. Without Obama’s intervention, Sanders would have been the likely winner of the nomination process. But Obama and the DNC could not stomach the idea of a progressive like Sanders winning the nomination, so Biden was propped up as the candidate who could win, i.e., the candidate who could be controlled by corporate forces.

Here’s my biggest concern. Biden isn’t a complete dummy, and no man truly wants to be a puppet of others. So I wonder if we’ll see Biden increasingly go off-script, in increasingly angry ways, that contribute to an increasingly dangerous world.

Biden has already gone dangerously off-script in calling for Vladimir Putin’s overthrow in Russia. To Biden, Putin is a “war criminal” who must not remain in power. It’s possible this heated, somewhat unhinged, rhetoric is that of an emasculated man who knows he’s little more than a figurehead.

Biden turns 80 later this year and says he wants to run again in 2024. Yet, at this Obama celebration at the White House, he looked like a man lost, a bit player in his own house, diminished to the point of irrelevance.

And that’s not a good thing when the U.S. needs effective, sound, and determined leadership.

38 thoughts on “Obama Humiliates Biden

  1. “….when the U.S. needs effective, sound, and determined leadership.”

    And not to put too fine a point on it, Obama was not, could never be, that type of effective leader.

    As poor a job as I think Biden is doing overall, and as little respect as I have for him as a creature of the corporations, it may turn out that, in the end, we have more reason to thank him than we did Obama. Admittedly, that’s a low bar, but as the basis for thus post was a comparison of the two…

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Bill, I agree completely on your comments on Obama’s self-importance and narcissism. What’s particularly appalling is that he maintains his hypnotic control over the Democratic party, where his governing principle continues to be don’t expect much but vote for us anyway – and aren’t I wonderful.

    I also noted Obama was addressed by many in the room (I assume staffers and media) as “Mister President.” The correct address should have been “Mister Obama”. It may seem a minor point to some, but I equate it with what we learned in the military – you salute the rank, not the person. The only President in the room was Biden.

    In addition, I observed Obama’s remora at his side throughout the videos: Vice-President Harris. The open and insulting display of disrespect for the President of the United States was chilling. There are no circumstances in which she should ever be allowed to be a nominee for President.

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    1. Several good points here, but I particularly applaud the one about how to address Mr. Obama. It seems the ones calling him “Mr. President” were deliberately denigrating President Biden, OR they were never taught proper manners. The Emily Post site could educate them.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. What’s plain to see here is that VP Harris had neither loyalty nor respect for President Biden. Perhaps the feeling is mutual, but her job — really her only job — is to be supportive. And she even fails at that.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Its tough to get old…! That being said I know that’s borderline Ageism, but it is what it is. The Silver Tsunami is starting to wash over us all. As an ageing Boomer myself I can relate. I’m not so sure Obama was Joking either in his patronizing tone, but my Wife & I both had uneasy laughs at poor old Joe’s demotion back to the almost as exciting as a bucket of warm spit title of being Vice again…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. “Slapshot” got it right. When a caller made fun of Reg Dunlop as an “old fart,” Ned Braden came quickly to his defense, respecting the “veteran” player who still had a few tricks up his sleeve.

      Obama, by comparison, left Biden out to dry, and it was brutal. Totally classless by Obama.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. That Silver Tsunami is going to wash all over me @ Horseneck Beach this Summah and from here on out! :o) Kamala as a Remora I don’t want to see there!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. The Democratic Party is a lost cause. Sleepy Joe Biden. Kamala Giggles Harris. Queen Bee Nancy Pelosi. Cryin Chuck Schumer. With Barrack Hope and Change Obama and Crooked Hilary Clinton lurking in the background. No progressive changes will ever come from this bunch.
    Sadly the Republican Party is no better. It must be pretty damn depressing for American voters.
    Ask Ralph Nadar what he thinks about the chances of a third party candidate? The number of progressive voters who still blame him for Al Gore’s failure is even more depressing.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Ongoing polling predict the Democrats are going to experience a historic defeat in the Congressional elections this year; the prospects aren’t much better in the 2024 Presidential campaign.

      While I don’t put it past the Republicans to underperform at least this year due to some idiocy of theirs, I think the polling will prove out. In the past, I would have been very troubled by the thought of total Republican control (coming in 2022 and 2024), but as you said, Dennis, the Democrats are a lost cause.

      Nothing will fundamentally change – so sayeth Joe Biden.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Tom, do you think Hunter Biden’s laptop is going to lead to the impeachment of Joe Biden?
        Leaving the US under the leadership of a politician who dropped out of the Presidential primaries for lack of support? And the Democratic Party becoming even more of a lost cause.
        Irrespective of what happens, I frankly things are not looking good for the Democrats in 2022 or 2024. It remains to be seen if Trump will run again in 2024 – and how the country will feel about that.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Dennis, I don’t think either party would want to want to go there. No one wants Harris as President. And I also think both parties would be fearful of precedent and the implications for future Presidents (I’d say the example of Nixon would be a factor, but that’s fading fast in a country with no memory of its history).

          If Hunter were convicted, and I think he’s likely going to jail for his actual crimes, a deal is going to be struck to protect “the big guy”. Maybe a letter of censure or other condemnation – but no actual impeachment, though the usual Republicans and talking heads on FOX will be screaming about it.

          A more interesting question is 2024. I don’t think Biden will be allowed to be the nominee again; he’s clearly in serious decline (and his outbursts, as Bill noted, could become more unhinged). If the country is in recession or worse; inflation is roaring with food shortages and soaring gas prices; and other troubles – I could see the Democrats going with Kamala just so they say they did. And then she will lose and fade into a well deserved obscurity.

          Liked by 1 person

      2. The thought of a GOP takeover is still extremely alarming to me, Tom. As pathetic as the Dems are, I’m afraid the Rethugs all think the “The Handmaid’s Tale” is a great blueprint for running a country.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Denise, I do understand that. The GOP takeover will not be pleasant. In education, there will be efforts toward prayer in school, moral codes, and teaching a sanitized view of American history. Women’s rights will be under increased attack – though I see that more at the state level than Federal. Minorities and immigrants could have a tough time. Climate change will be downplayed so we won’t even get the incrementalism of the Democrats.

          What I’m unsure of is how much effort the mainstream Republicans (whoever they would be by 2024) would put into many of those issues beyond talk (except for an occasional bone to what even they see as their lunatic fringe). Their efforts will be primarily on the things their donors actually want: more defense spending, more mining and drilling, more deregulation, and more profits. It’s not much to hang onto but MAGA was about economics more than social issues; I don’t see that changing.

          The Democrats have blown it since the time of Clinton and the bill is coming due in the next two elections. I don’t like it, but I can’t stop it and will try to find a way to live with the values I have. And we can endure as people always have when the darkness comes.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Indeed, we will endure in the darkness, Tom.

            I hope you’re right that the GOP would/will stick to enriching their donors in every possible way, but I fear that what was once the lunatic fringe has become more powerful and mainstream. Hence the insanity about CRT, for instance; what amounts to “owning” the schools. And if they do go after women’s rights even harder, well….we X- chromosome people will be looking at being fitted for red nuns’ habits.

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    2. As Ron Placone likes to say: “America doesn’t need a third party. It needs a second one.” Or, as Gore Vidal observed a long time ago: “America has only one political party, the Property Party, and it has two right wings.”

      Liked by 2 people

    3. Amen to every one of your statements, Dennis! It IS damn depressing to be an American voter. As a Progressive, I know that the chances that any candidate I back will win are infinitesimal. That is, if a candidate I can get behind ever runs again.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Makes one wonder if it is Obama who is really calling the shots here in this Ukrainian conflict?
    Is Obama( and his Neo-con cronies – Nuland) hiding behind Biden’s dementia to hide the US’s real policy of Putin regime change? How much power does Obama actually have?
    If you get my drift? Not very well worded eh?
    That would be pretty sad – for everybody.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. As a then-admirer of Obama, I muttered ‘Say it isn’t so’ upon seeing the then-president drinking a glass of Flint, Michigan water, signifying the water system was safe to drink from, which he must have known really was not. I henceforth viewed U.S. presidents, along with Canadian PMs, essentially as instruments of big corporate and power interests.

        I know that the lead-tainting was not Obama’s doing; however, what he did was a major shock to and disappointment for the lead-poisoned Flint folk, who’d expected far more/better from him. To a lot of people, he had behaved like some TV-promotion actor hired by an (in this case) seriously ethically/morally challenged corporation.

        Though I would expect it from a Republican president or even then-president Bill Clinton, I found it very disappointing of Obama (maybe because he is Black, as were many/most of the lead-water-ingesting Flint folk), regardless of the big business and/or political pressure he probably had on his head. …

        Meanwhile, a common yet questionable refrain prevails among capitalist nation governments and corporate circles: Best business practices, including what’s best for consumers, are best decided by business decision-makers.

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  6. “Without Obama’s intervention, Sanders would have been the likely winner of the nomination process. But Obama and the DNC could not stomach the idea of a progressive like Sanders winning the nomination, so Biden was propped up as the candidate who could win, i.e., the candidate who could be controlled by corporate forces.”
    ____

    Succinctly well said but still a little too polite in terminology used. …

    The DNC refuses to allow a Bernie Sanders presidential candidacy, regardless of what Democratic Party members/voters want. For example, every county in West Virginia voted for the truly progressive Bernie Sanders in 2016, yet the Democratic National Committee declared them as wins for Hillary Clinton; Clinton’s neo-liberalism, unlike Sanders’ fiscal progressiveness, was already known for not rubbing against big money, business and power grains.

    Fiscal conservative ideology/politics, big business interests and most of the corporate mainstream news-media resist sufficiently progressive ideas from actually being implemented.

    I strongly suspect that any American president who would seriously try implementing truly humane, progressive policies — notably, a significant reduction in military spending, a genuine anti-war effort, universal single-payer healthcare, writing-off student deb, increasing the minimum wage while reigning in Wall Street — would likely be assassinated. Sanders seems to closely reflect these progressive policies.

    Thus, I believe that American presidents (and Canadian prime ministers, for that matter) are mostly symbolically ‘in charge’, beneath the most power-entrenched and saturated national/corporate interests and institutions. Those elected heads ‘lead’ a virtual corpocracy, i.e. “a society dominated by politically and economically large corporations”.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. FGSJR – the most power-entrenched and saturated national/corporate interests and institutions – a hybrid association of elements of government and parts of top-level finance and industry that is effectively able to govern without reference to the consent of the governed – otherwise know as the “Deep State.”

      A 1955 article in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, quotes Americans sharing their belief in the existence of a “dual state”: a hidden national security hierarchy and shadow government that monitors and controls elected politicians. Opinion polling during 2017-18 suggested that approximately half of all Americans believe in the existence of a “Deep State’.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Fifty years ago, novelist Taylor Caldwell wrote about a version of the Deep State in “Captains and the Kings.” The Afterword discusses her theory that world leaders are, for the most part, mere figureheads, while events are controlled by unseen puppeteers. The resulting mini-series scrubbed her most pointed depictions, naturally.

        Yep, it’s the mother of all conspiracy theories, but damn if it doesn’t make perfect sense.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Denise, as regular Bracing Posts readers know I am a Kiwi who lived and worked in Seattle for 41-years – recently retired back to my home country of New Zealand. In the 41-years I lived in the USA every Precedential election was going to to be the most important and consequential election in history! It never was! Nothing changed. This 2024 election will be the same as all before it. It will change nothing. The “Deep State” with its unseen puppeteers will just continue on running the country. LOL

          Liked by 1 person

          1. “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss…”

            I’ve been voting since 1976, and I think Ronnie Raygun’s tenure was a watershed. Though nothing changed with the Deep State, the Deep State decisively changed things for We the People. It’s been noticeably downhill ever since.

            Also, I think those who tried and failed should be taken into account, to show how close we’ve come; JFK, for instance. Had he lived, he could have been a tipping point. Same with Lincoln. And RFK and MLK, too, if you want to count leaders, not just Presidents. In each of those cases, our society a-l-m-o-s-t changed. But as you said, in the end, the Deep State prevailed. When chicanery didn’t succeed, they resorted to assassination.

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        2. That’s pretty much what I’ve been saying for some time. Perhaps I heard Taylor Caldwell’s work cited by another source, and it remained in my subconscious.

          The figureheads are mostly symbolically ‘in charge’, beneath the most power-entrenched and saturated national/corporate interests and institutions. The elected heads ‘lead’ a virtual corpocracy, i.e. “a society dominated by politically and economically large corporations”.

          Powerful business interests can debilitate high-level elected officials through implicit or explicit threats to transfer or eliminate jobs and capital investment, thus economic stability, if corporate ‘requests’ aren’t accommodated. (Does Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s SNC-Lavalin affair/corruption come to mind?)

          It’s a political crippling that’s worsened by a blaring mainstream news-media that are permitted to be naturally critical of incumbent governments, especially in regards to job and capital transfers and economic weakening.

          Liked by 1 person

      2. Meanwhile, D.Trump’s fans believe his tripe about him challenging the Deep State.

        A revelatory review (by Geoff Olson, 01/10/2018) of the book ‘The American Deep State: Wall Street, Big Oil, and the Attack on U.S. Democracy’ notes that the book’s author describes big oil CEOs and lobbyists in the U.S. as being a very large part of the American Deep State.
        https://commonground.ca/a-deep-state-of-confusion/
        Therefore, it would be a large part of the national Capitol’s ‘swamp’ that Trump claims has corrupted DC and, ergo, was supposedly seeking to destroy him and his presidency.

        But, considering the Trump administration’s kowtowing to big fossil fuel (mostly via the loosening of environmental protections), he, far from genuinely trying to “drain the swamp”, would likely be content with wallowing in it.

        __________

        “This notion of a supranational deep state does not seem to be far-fetched to me, though I remain agnostic about rumours involving the [Trump administration] Offal Office. I certainly don’t buy the alt-right notion that Trump is playing ‘four-dimensional chess’ against the deep state. The six-time bankruptee would probably lose at checkers to a nine-year old and tweet that he whipped Garry Kasparov.”
        —Geoff Olson, “A Deep State of Confusion”

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  7. Joe Biden has never gone “off-script” since he has been a permanent fixture in SwampLand since 1973. That’s why he is still there. That’s the only reason why anybody who is still there after one term is still there.

    Calling Putin a War Criminal and for Regime Change in Moscow is exactly what the script writers gave him to say, and he dutifully said it; whether he actually believes that or not.

    But Biden is not unique. The only reason Trump, Obama, Bush II, Clinton, and especially Reagan got to where they did was by being reciters of the scripts provided by their owners, operators, and controllers.

    And it certainly didn’t start with Bozo.

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