The New York Times’ Thomas Friedman — yes, the Thomas Friedman — ended his most recent and very bland column this week with the declaration that he had “left my lunch with the president with a full stomach but a heavy heart.”
Friedman no doubt left his meeting full and heavy. The article he churned out after his very important meal with President Biden is beyond bloated. Although Friedman said their conversation was off-record, he was gracious enough to tell his readers what he ate and how he “felt” about the encounter. In other words, it’s a typical Friedman column— practically useless.
His ultimate takeaway: Biden has been exceptionally good at managing our march to the brink of World War III. (It was apparently an epic failure that, unlike Biden, Donald Trump couldn’t goad Vladimir Putin to invade Ukraine much sooner.)
“What I felt afterward was this,” wrote Friedman. “For all you knuckleheads on Fox who say that Biden can’t put two sentences together, here’s a news flash: He just put NATO together, Europe together and the whole Western alliance together — stretching from Canada up to Finland and all the way to Japan — to help Ukraine protect its fledgling democracy from Vladimir Putin’s fascist assault.”
Well, if that doesn’t make your heart soar with patriotism, I don’t know what will, FOLKS!
The only problem with that Olympian achievement Friedman credits to Biden is that it’s not true. Even if it were, which one of the people who voted for him feels that it made her life any better?
Setting aside that Ukraine isn’t a member of NATO, and thus is, in theory, owed nothing by the alliance, Biden hasn’t shown any degree of remarkable leadership there. He cut off our Russian energy imports, but our tried and true allies in Germany did not follow suit.
Biden requested that our reliable friends in Poland send fighter jets to Ukraine. Their response: No thanks! Great Britain sent their prime minister to Ukraine for a meeting with President Volodymyr Zelensky. Biden sent his wife. (I believe we shouldn’t be sending Americans to war zones where our national interests are, at best, ambiguous, but so long as we’re talking about leadership…)
The rest of Friedman’s article is a list of excuses for why Biden has been a suck of a president.
It’s Trump’s fault: “a movement by Trump and his supporters … is not propelled by any coherent set of policies, but rather by a gigantic lie…”
It’s Democrats’ fault: “House Democrats also sullied one of Biden’s most important bipartisan achievements — a giant infrastructure bill — by making it hostage to other excessive spending demands. The far left also saddled Biden and every Democratic candidate with radical notions like ‘defund the police.'”
It’s America’s fault: “[W]ith every passing day, every mass shooting, every racist dog whistle, every defund-the-police initiative, every nation-sundering Supreme Court ruling, every speaker run off a campus, every bogus claim of election fraud, I wonder if he can bring us back together. I wonder if it’s too late.”
I’m sure Friedman, a writer at America’s most important newspaper, truly enjoyed his lunch with Biden. It must have made him feel really special to be invited to the White House by the president of the United States.
But it’s time for him to admit what the rest of us have known for a long time now: Biden is an embarrassment and it’s not because of circumstances out of his control. Biden is the circumstance that needs to be controlled.