Earlier today on the Weekly Standard’s blog, Daniel Halper posted this video of Vice President Joe Biden tweaking the man who wants his job—House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan—for incorporating fatherly wisdom into his campaign speeches over the weekend.
"My dad used to have another saying, for real," Biden said. "And, by the way, I've been saying this for 30 years. And I'm glad to see that Congressman Ryan likes his dad, too, and quotes his dad. I mean that sincerely. But my dad [had] a lot of wisdom. Every time someone tell you, say, 'Look, let me tell you what's important to me, what I value.' My dad would go, 'No, no. Don't tell me what you value. Show me your budget, and I will tell you what you value.'"
Biden’s snarky comments are, as Halper noted, insensitive, given that Ryan’s father died when he was a teenager. (Then again, sensitivity to unfortunate circumstances in others’ lives is not one of the vice president’s strong suits.) But as a more general point, does Biden really want to go after Ryan by suggesting that the Wisconsin congressman’s dad didn’t actually say the things Ryan quoted? Biden, who loves to litter his speeches with quotes from sources famous and familiar—many of which are completely misconstrued, made up, or both, or drawn from interactions that were simply fabricated? Does a documented plagiarist seriously want to invite scrutiny of the sources of vice presidential wisdom?
The great part about the passage Halper points to is that, right as Biden is suggesting that Paul Ryan’s dad didn’t actually use those witticisms Ryan cites, he tosses out a lesson learned at his own father’s knee. “But my dad a lot of wisdom [sic],” Biden says. “Every time someone tell you [sic], say, 'Look, let me tell you what's important to me, what I value.' My dad would go, 'No, no. Don't tell me what you value. Show me your budget, and I will tell you what you value.'"
For real? Did Papa Biden honestly tell Young Joseph Robinette that the true measure of a man was his budget? I don’t know about Ricochet readers, but I’ve had a lot of heart-to-heart conversations and learned a lot of important life lessons from my parents over the years—and not one of those lessons used federal budgeting as an instruction device.
My dad has a saying, for real (really for real): Joe Biden is a fraud.