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« The Classical Saturday Morning Coffee Break & Prayer Revival (2/17/24) | Main | Gardening, Puttering and Adventure Thread, Feb. 17 »
February 17, 2024

It may be confusing to watch the press for the next few months

sunrise red friday.jpg

Yesterday's sunrise in Central California

White House Press Corps, February 8

After the Hur special counsel report was released, the White House Press Corps acted in an unusual manner:

Walter Kirn:

The WH press corps got the signal tonight that it was safe to go into attack mode & make up for lost time. It duly obeyed. Reporters who once competed to throw softballs suddenly competed to hurl stones. What a weird little mob of robots. It was actually chilling to witness.

Here is the C-SPAN video

And the transcript.

I thank you, and I'll take some questions.

Q President Biden, something the special counsel said in his report is that one of the reasons you were not charged is because, in his description, you are a "well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory."

THE PRESIDENT: I am well-meaning, and I'm an elderly man, and I know what the hell I'm doing. I've been President. I put this country back on its feet. I don't need his recommendation. That's totally un- --

Q How bad is your memory? And can you continue as President?

THE PRESIDENT: My memory is so bad, I let you speak. That's the --

Q Do you --

THE PRESIDENT: That's what --

Q Do you feel your memory has gotten worse, Mr. President?

THE PRESIDENT: Now, look, my memory has not gotten -- my memory is fine. My memory -- take a look at what I've done since I've become President. None of you thought I could pass any of the things I got passed. How did that happen?

You know, I guess I just forgot what was going on.

Q Mr. President -- Mr. President --

Q Should voters have concerns about your age? How are you going to assuage them? And do you fear that this report is only going to fuel further their concerns about your age (inaudible)?

THE PRESIDENT: Only by some of you. . .

Ace wrote about some of the boo-boos Biden made in his presser. He also covered a damage control presser featuring Biden spokesman Ian Sams.

So, that weird little mob of robots was not just asking Biden about ice cream this time. Caused quite a stir.

The Press and Biden's Dementia, After February 8

The February 8 presser was isolated in time and space. I think it is worthwhile to remember its specifics, because it was unusual. It can be compared with later statements by the same folks and people who work with them. Like the people suggesting that Biden's dementia is a good thing.

After the February 8 presser, the White House also reacted:

White House deputy press secretary Andrew Bates complained about the press' recent coverage of President Biden's mental acuity after Special Counsel Robert Hur called out his memory for being "poor."

Bates took to X on Thursday to rip journalists for seeming more skeptical of Biden's old age and cognitive abilities lately in the wake of the Hur report.

Hur declined to charge Biden for his mishandling of classified documents, in part because his "poor memory" would discourage a jury from convicting him. The document sent shockwaves through D.C. and the media, with prominent outlets covering Biden's cognitive abilities in a more skeptical light than ever before.

On the other hand, Biden's defenders in the Democratic Party and in his own administration insist that Biden is fine and any evidence to the contrary is "right-wing propaganda."

Bates trashed the press, saying its own "collective memory problems" prevented them from remembering Biden's strong qualities and past "rightwing age attacks."

The press could not remember Biden's strong qualities and past "rightwing age attacks". Heh.

I did not know this about the White House deputy press secretary, either:

Last year, Bates was found to be implicated in spreading the now-discredited letter signed by 50 former intel agency officials saying that Hunter Biden's laptop and its controversial contents were a hoax whipped up by Russian disinformation agents.

This piece also notes the Puck News survey of news people about their prior concerns about Biden's mental state, which Ace covered on the 15th: "Notice they're now setting up the Modified Limited Hangout Fallback Position that while Biden is showing mental decline, he only started really showing it in the past few months."


When discussing the statements of politicians, political operatives or the press, I think it is important to ask

When and where did they say it? In what context?

And, thinking ahead, per James Lindsay

Who is the intended target audience for this statement?

People outside the target audience may roll their eyes at a statement that is fully accepted by the target audience.

There may be more than one target audience. The center left is a typical target audience for the White House and the MSM, but they may also be targeting some "red meat" folks on the right whom they wish to provoke into stereotypically bad behavior, to scare their base.

If there is more than one intended audience, is the speaker trying to get some people on the right to do something stupid in order to look "based"?

It may be worthwhile to point out the intended target audience or audiences to your friends. Who might care in the coming months about what the press thought about Biden's mental acuity in February, for example? Who might profit by pointing out that "the right" is attacking a feeble old man, even after the Democrats choose someone else as their leader?

Can humor help?

* * * * *

Miscellaneous things to think about

Story time:


El Salvador has a per capita GDP of $4,500 and a homicide rate of 2.4 per 100,000. The United States has a per capita GDP of $70,000 and a homicide rate of 5.5 per 100,000.

Locking up violent criminals works. Discipline, not wealth, is the key.

The future of El Salvador remains uncertain. Bukele might not last, or he might desire power beyond democracy. But the short-term implication is clear: societies with the determination to reduce crime can do so. Lock up criminals, don't solipsize over "root causes."


Thinking about the digital dollar here:

And the minimum wage in California should be how much?


And all went as planned in Afghanistan.

biden talliban gun control.jpg


Russia is under authoritarianism. There is no doubt about it.

The same media that exposes the political corruption in Russia mostly ignores the CCP.

Navalny was the leader of an opposition party
He was an open critic of Putin
He organized anti govt demonstrations
He ran for office
He founded the Anti-Corruption Foundation
He had supporters ...

Any of those is ABSOLUTELY an impossibility in CCP's China. Do American people know Xi's political enemies? Where are they, dead or alive? No, Americans know very little, all because of the media.

While the left is using Navalny's death to attack the conservatives for opposing the Ukraine War, the Dems are defending CCP's most powerful weapon against America, TikTok. . .


Story time 2:

* * * * *

Music and Dance

Pancho Lara

* * * * *

Hope you have something nice planned for this weekend.

This is the Thread before the Gardening Thread.

Serving your mid-day open thread needs

* * * * *

February 10, Don't let "Woman" disappear

Comments are closed so you won't ban yourself by trying to comment on a week-old thread. But don't try it anyway.

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posted by K.T. at 11:05 AM

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