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Joe Biden Gaffe; Says That FDR Went on Television

September 23, 2008

Cross posted on Grizzly Groundswell

 My initial reaction to Barack Obama picking Joe Biden as his running mate was that he was the Best pick Obama could have made. Well, other than Hillary Clinton, but she was never a real option. I thought that Barack Obama made a great choice because he shored up his greatest weaknesses-experience and foreign policy.

 What I failed to realize was how gaffe prone Biden was. I mentioned in my original assessment that the biggest downside to Biden was his mouth getting him in trouble but I guess I failed to realize just how much this could come back to haunt Obama.

 The latest example of this comes from Joe Biden’s recent interview with Katie Couric. While talking about the mortgage crisis and Wall Street bailout, Joe Biden tried to take a shot at President Bush by telling us the difference between him and FDR by saying, “when the stock market crashed, Franklin Roosevelt got on the television and didn’t just talk about the princes of greed he said, ‘Look, here’s what happened.'”

 He was trying to show how FDR was a leader while President Bush is not, and that was the example that he used. There are just a couple of problems with that statement. The first problem is the little fact that there were no televisions in 1929, the year the stock market crashed. The second problem? FDR was not president in 1929 when the stock market crashed, Hoover was.

 This is not just a gaffe in my opinion. This was either an outright lie or a total ignorance of history. Or both. Joe Biden was spreading lies about history in order to make President Bush look bad. Did he really believe that the American people were to stupid to see through this and realize his statement was factually incorrect? Or did he really believe that what he was saying was true? I am not sure what is worse.

 The third possibility is that he just threw that statement out there without thinking and didn’t even realize what he was saying and it didn’t even cross his mind that it might not be correct. This also is no better than the other options.

 While the media ponders whether Sarah Palin is qualified to be president if something happens to John McCain, Joe Biden is getting a free ride and from what I have heard from Joe Biden I have to wonder how he can possibly be qualified. A man that is so willing to lie about something that is so easily disproved (and I think it was a lie and not just an ignorance of history) just to gain the office can’t be trusted with the office.

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12 Comments leave one →
  1. Bob/Paul permalink
    September 23, 2008 7:49 pm

    I think it was an honest confusion of history and nothing more. FDR had regular “fireside chats” on the RADIO. FDR also got us out of the great depression with the New Deal projects and similar policies. Certainly Joe screwed up, but his main point–that FDR was open and direct with the American people whereas Bush certainly isn’t–still stands. I would certainly rank this as less bad than many of the incorrect things McCain’s camp spouts.


    • James permalink
      December 6, 2019 1:12 pm

      “honest confusion”?!? Now THAT’S funny!


  2. TJay permalink
    September 23, 2008 9:43 pm

    As Gasdocpol would say:
    Mr Pink Eyes,
    The essential of what Biden said was that when SOME stock market crashed SOME President got on the television and didn’t just talk about the princes of greed he said, ‘Look, here’s what happened.’”

    Either you are disingenuously trying to call Biden a liar.


    You are not capable of identifying what is essential and what is trivia.

    If it is the latter , I hope that you are not in a position of responsibility where it is necessary to make important decisions.


  3. JRTguy permalink
    September 24, 2008 12:14 pm

    A number of years ago a voter asked Joe Biden where he went to law school and where he placed in his class. Biden became extremely agitated and lashed out at the poor guy exclaiming that he went to law school on a full academic scholarship, graduated in the top half of his class, and graduated from college with three undergraduate degrees. All three were BLATANT lies and eventually cost him in his bid for the presidency.

    The worst part of that whole incident was when Biden pointed his finger in the man’s face and said, “I’ll tell you what, I bet my I.Q. is higher than yours!!” Based on this most recent gaffe, I’m wondering what, if anything, is in that brain.

    P.S. The video of that incident with the voter is still on You Tube — type in Biden/IQ and you’ll find it.


  4. TJay permalink
    September 24, 2008 12:40 pm

    There is a lot out there but this is always going to be my favorite:


  5. September 24, 2008 2:10 pm

    As any history teacher would tell you,THIS WAS NOT TRUE!
    There was NO TV in 1929, or 1930, or at anytime during the Depression. NO President got on TV to talk about much of anything until Harry Truman.

    While I partially agree with Bob/Paul about Biden’s intent, you cannot have a Vice President (possible President) who does not say what he intends. It is like asking him if he is going to oversee the war on terrorism or overlook it. A person whose English is his second language may not quickly pick up on the difference.


  6. TJay permalink
    September 24, 2008 3:09 pm

    Mustang Rambles,

    That entire post was a spoof of this sweet and unending sonnet:

    I should have provided more than just a wink for clarity by putting quotations around all of the words.

    I trust Mr Pink Eyes recognized the parody.


  7. September 24, 2008 6:10 pm

    T Jay, I did think that what you wrote was tongue in cheek but I missed the recent comments on the post that you linked to. I understand your coment even more now that I have gone back and read what you were refering to.


  8. September 25, 2008 12:08 am

    I heart Joe Biden!! He is the best gift Obama could’ve given to the Republican party this year.


  9. September 25, 2008 4:47 am

    Your assessment of Biden as Obama’s VP pick looks allot more accurate than my initial assessment. I thought Biden might help Obama because he shored up his greatest weekness, foreign policy. Boy was I wrong. He has been fun to listen to though.


  10. September 25, 2008 4:49 am

    Boib/Paul, just curious, if McCain had made this gaffe would you being saying it was an honest confusion of history? Or would you be saying that McCain is confused and is unfit to serve because of his age?


  11. 1920s TV and Hoover permalink
    October 4, 2008 8:53 am

    Also in 1927, Herbert E. Ives of Bell Labs transmitted moving images from a 50-aperture disk producing 16 frames per minute over a cable from Washington, DC to New York City, and via radio from Whippany, New Jersey. Ives used viewing screens as large as 24 by 30 inches (60 by 75 centimeter). His subjects included Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover.

    In 1928, Philo Farnsworth made the world’s first working television system with electronic scanning of both the pickup and display devices, which he first demonstrated to news media on 1928-09-01, televising a motion picture film.


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