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The Elephant Cage
Biden's Folly

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Biden's Folly

Cutting off arms to Israel is dumb and disastrous—above all, for Joe Biden. But given the alternative, that means "disastrous for the world."

I just saw this column by Bret Stephens, who echoes my sentiments almost verbatim. I hadn’t seen that when we recorded this last night, and obviously, he hadn’t listened to this podcast.1 But he wrote more or less exactly what I’ve said here.

All of this is disastrous for Biden, and thus disastrous for us all.

I figured until this that he was basically a savvy politician who understood why the American electorate put him in power quite well. Normalcy. Not extremism. But I was wrong. He’s in a bubble. He doesn’t understand how much of his support comes from people like me.

People like me—and I suspect the majority of Americans, even still—loathe the far right. They also loathe the far left and the Islamists. People like me have for years rejected the argument that Biden is dangerously in the sway of the Islamists and the far left on the grounds that it’s absurd to say so. Befuddled though he may be, Biden is clearly an old-fashioned center-leftist, firmly in the postwar American tradition. He’s not going to do anything grotesquely offensive in office. Trump, meanwhile, is literally—not just metaphorically or hyperbolically—insane, a Clusterfuck B personality disorder on cloven hooves. It really is an open question whether the American republic would survive another term under his aegis.

I still maintain this—passionately. For all his deficits, and there are so many, there’s no option but Joe Biden. The prospect of a second Trump presidency is too terrible to consider.

But until recently, I had allowed myself not to consider it. I believed, in some primitive, unjustifiable way, that it just couldn’t happen. That Americans will somehow come to their senses before Election Day.

I no longer think so. What this tells me is that Biden is so out of touch that he’s confused the campus of Columbia with mainstream American opinion. It’s an unforced and terrible error. It tells me the people around him—including his cabinet—are giving him awful advice. Neither he nor his advisors have properly understood how many Americans want to vomit when they see those spoiled, pampered, Hamas-loving campus imbeciles demanding “humanitarian aid”—for themselves. So they don’t get peckish during their sleepover parties with their little chums.

It’s not just the greasy-pole climbers like Elise Stefanik who feel this way. There’s a broad American center that cannot stand what we’ve recently seen emerging from these institutions. They will instinctively and immediately understand that Biden has decided to pander to them at the expense of our ally, and they will understand that in doing so, he has made us weaker. They may not be able to admit or articulate to themselves what causes them to stay home on Election Day. But it will be this—this, and our withdrawal from Afghanistan, our timidity in arming Ukraine, our misbegotten efforts to coax Iran back into a nuclear deal it clearly does not want. This—and Biden’s infernal mumbling, stuttering, and slurring. This—and the massive, coordinated information war that Russia and China will mount on Trump’s behalf. (There will be a hell of an October Surprise. I promise.) This, and the failure of our judiciary to swiftly put Trump behind bars— not for paying off a porn star, but for attempting a coup. All of this, together, is enough to win Trump reelection.

I have no idea how Biden made this decision, or why. How could he fail to appreciate that it’s the political kiss of death to be lauded by Ilhan Omar? Her words will be on GOP attack ads from now until Election Day.

In capitulating to his party’s loons and cranks, Biden has breathed life into a GOP argument that until now was easy to dismiss—viz., that the crackpots are secretly running his administration.

This is a disastrous headline for Joe Biden:

Of course, it is also a disastrous decision for America, Israel, and Palestinians alike. And because it may well cost him the election, it is a disastrous decision for the entire world.

I’m furious with him. So much is riding on the defeat of Donald Trump. I don’t give a damn about Biden’s fortunes, per se. But he has a massive responsibility on his shoulders. He chose to undertake it despite the grave reservations of his party. He insisted upon undertaking it, making a primary contest impossible. Having done so, he owes us—all of us, every man, woman, and child around the globe who counts on a sane and stable United States—more than this.

This is the kind of stupidity the world can’t endure.

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The Cosmopolitan Globalist
The Elephant Cage
John Oxley and Claire Berlinski take you on a daily, 20-minute tour of the global news.