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24 Jul, 2009 09:16

Joe Biden & the art of noise

Joe Biden & the art of noise

Joe Biden happens to be the Vice President of the US. He’s also known as “Biden Gaffe Machine” – and not without merit.

Domestically, he made his mark by advising the Americans not to take any commercial flights or to ride on trains because the “swine flu virus can spread in confined places.”

“I would tell members of my family – and I have – I wouldn’t go anywhere in confined places now.”

The near panic that ensued, naturally, had to be calmed down by the combined efforts of the rest of the Obama administration.

Then the man decides to get himself involved in affairs international and opines, publicly, that “Israel, as a ‘sovereign nation’ was entitled to decide on a strike against Iran.”

This time his boss, President Obama had to rush to the rescue personally to deflect Joe Biden’s claim and to underscore that no, the United States of America had “absolutely not” given Israel a green light to have Iran blown to smithereens.

Most recently, Joe Biden’s oral talents and powers of persuasion were employed to work on Ukraine and Georgia, two post-soviet countries whose presidents were particularly vocal and successful at wooing that great democrat, George Walker Bush, to help them “defend democracy”.

So deep was the desire to help the former US president in his democratization of the world that both sent big contingents of their troops to Iraq – and one even renamed a principal street of his capital, making it the world’s one and only “George W. Bush Avenue”. I kid you not – check it out, it's still there.

The other great statesman is Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko, the man whose popular support ratings in his home country have crucially improved in the last few months – from 2% to a staggering 5.5%, to be precise.

The man who lost almost all of his Orange Revolution allies – some turning into bitter “tell it all” enemies airing dirty laundry in public. The man whose family affairs are a permanent fixture of every tabloid in Eastern Europe (do you see a story of, say, Jenna Bush driving a BMW M6 “given by a business associate” and dining with a $1,000 bottle of champagne making a few headlines in her home country? Jenna, thankfully, did no such thing, which could not be said about Yushchenko’s sibling).

Another one is Georgia’s Mikhail Saakashvili, whose deeds while in power include, but not limited to: the brutal dispersal of a peaceful opposition rally in his capital; sending an armed police squad to close down a television station; and launching and flat-out losing the war in the Republic of South Ossetia last year. Oh – and don’t forget the ongoing months-long opposition rally at his capital led by his former closest allies.

It would seem that Messrs. Yushchenko and Saakashvili (naturally, best of friends) are particularly adept at turning allies into enemies.

But not Joe Biden.

“Our partnership rests on a foundation of shared democratic ideals, and we will continue to support your work and deepen Georgia's democracy.”


At least in Kiev, Ukraine, he was closer on the mark with (The New York Daily News reported) “[They’re] the most beautiful women in the world. That’s my observation”.

Here we don’t want to argue with you, Joe Biden.

Insomniac in DC for RT