Whose Mental Slippage?

There’s been a hue and cry about Joe Biden’s age, mental confusion, and age-related memory problems. But some of this has little to do with age. He was stuttering from childhood, made the occasional verbal gaffe when a senator or as vice-president. Are those gaffes increasing? They’re apparently more frequent, but I’d submit that they’re not as much more frequent as the media reports, simply because, now that the issue has been raised, every media reporter anywhere is looking for slips or gaffes, especially since Biden recently turned 81.

But, at age 77, and about to turn 78 in four months, Donald Trump is no spring chicken, either. The other day, I watched a montage of recent Trump misstatements, and gaffes, delivered at full Trump volume, and, outside of that one report, I’ve neither heard nor read any significant media concern about Trump’s mental readiness for the Presidency.

Why might that be?

I’d submit that, first, Trump delivers most of what he says forcefully and emphatically, which creates the illusion that he actually knows and understands what he’s talking about. Add to that the fact that too many American voters care more about HOW someone speaks more than they care about what they say. Second, Trump lies and misstates so much that it’s effectively impossible to sort out the gaffes and errors from all the lies and misstatements. Third, because his basic themes are always on the same subjects, he’s seldom challenged on new subjects or areas in the way that Biden routinely is. And when he is, he seldom says anything even close to profound, but merely repeats the soundbites on which he’s always campaigned.

Unless, of course, he promises to turn over to Putin any country that he thinks doesn’t spend enough on its national defense. That’s not a gaffe, but a policy position with frightening consequences, yet it’s already been almost forgotten, if heard at all, by the gaffe-hunters, who are far more interested in easy and often meaningless pickings than in truly frightening mental slippages.

5 thoughts on “Whose Mental Slippage?”

  1. KevinJ says:

    It’s hard to judge Trump on everything he says because he almost never makes any sense, or proposes anything that would actually help the country. (Help rich people, sure. Pretend to help the working class, sometimes.)

    The funny thing with “Attack ’em, Vlad, if they don’t pay up” is…Trump has Secret Service protection, and of course the same degree of police and US military protection that everyone else gets.

    But does Trump pay his taxes?

    1. KTL says:

      Not sure if he pays his taxes as we’ve yet to see anything regarding them other than what was in the NYT article a few years ago.

      BUT….we do know he famously refuses to pay many of his contractors and more recently lots of his lawyers. And I’m guessing VERY LITTLE of his legal fees are coming out of his own bank accounts in the last few years.

      Pretty rich. If he’s accusing, then you can be sure he’s guilty of the same thing himself.

  2. Postagoras says:

    I think that Trump has inoculated himself against charges of incoherence or lying by Just. Not. Stopping. It’s not news that he’s lying and doesn’t make sense.

    Also, many people saw and admired Trump’s style during the more than ten seasons of The Apprentice. I never saw a single episode, but a lot of people did! And apparently there are many people who think that this blustering bullying style is the path to success in a world that just seems too complicated.

  3. Darcherd says:

    I am simply shaking my head at how our country came to this pass, where our choices for president are between two old men, one of them (remotely) possibly senile and the other demonstrably criminally insane.

    1. KTL says:

      I’m not so sure I’d even conjure the presumption that Biden could be senile. He can read, comprehend, and voice complex sentences, arguments, and does it in a grammatically correct way. He has a lifelong stutter that causes him to pause often. Maybe more now.

      But, more importantly we will be making a choice between a Biden administration and a Trump one – not just the single person in the presidential office. I shudder to think about Stephen Miller as the Attorney General – an idea recently floated in the press. We will be voting for something predictable and normal with a Biden admin vs completely volatile behavior from a Trump admin. Even Putin was quoted this week as saying he preferred the predictability and stability of the Biden presidency over a future Trump term. That’s saying something there.

      I agree with your characterization of Trump though.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *