Man, I’m not sure I will make it till November. I don’t mind heated rhetoric. I don’t mind mud slinging (too much). But I can’t stand the constant repetition, day after day, of standard talking points, without even the most rudimentary stab at balance.
This week, talk radio was all over Joe Biden for his “chains” remark. Obviously, nobody thinks Biden was seriously accusing Republicans of wanting to reintroduce slavery. He wasn’t even talking about civil rights.
But fair enough. Biden slips up a lot and deserves a public beating when he does. On Fox News, Megyn Kelly asked a fair question: Should we let a guy off the hook for saying something stupid just because he says a lot of stupid things?
Probably not. But consider the alternative: Do we want every single candidate to sound as scripted as Romney and Obama do? Shouldn’t at least one politician on the national stage be allowed to just say whatever happens to run through his head without having to worry about how it will look on TV the next day? Perhaps not, but I will miss Biden when he is gone.
But I would not complain about talk radio picking on Biden if just once — even to defend it — somebody had mentioned a Republican campaign point that sounds far more racially divisive to me than anything Biden has said. That’s the ad that accuses Obama of cutting work requirements so that people on welfare “wouldn’t have to work and wouldn’t have to train for a job.” The ad is just blatantly false, raises no issues worthy of consideration in the presidential race, and seems to serve only one possible purpose: to associate Obama with shiftless welfare bums. The racial implications are unmistakable — and were totally ignored Thursday by all of Biden’s many critics.
Sigh. It’s going to be a long, long season.
UPDATE: With respect to the comments below, here’s some evidence that the right dogs are hearing the whistle.