Biden, Quote Thyself

 

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.

There are 21 comments.

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  1. Profile Photo Inactive
    @RobertBarraudTaylor

    That’s amazing! My father has the very same saying! I’ve heard it since Joe Biden was elected to the Senate…

    • #1
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    @

    Joe is a real piece of work.

    Stand up Chuck!

    • #2
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    @ConservativeWanderer

    My father didn’t pass in my teenage years, but he did pass before Biden came to worldwide attention.

    However, given that he was a lifelong sailor, both US Navy and US Naval Reserves, you can probably imagine how he’d describe Ol’ Gaffemeister Joe.

    • #3
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    @Kervinlee

    What’s the matter with Delaware?

    • #4
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    @

    I can’t wait for Ryan to destroy this man in the debate.

    • #5
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    @DrewInWisconsin
    Meghan Clyne:

    For real? Did Papa Biden honestly tell Young Joseph Robinette that the true measure of a man was his budget?

    I’ve heard that saying before, but it wasn’t from Joe’s dad. Hmmm.

    • #6
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    @SouthernPessimist

    Halper also pointed out that basically Biden was admitting that Democrats have no values since they have no budget.

    • #7
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    @ConservativeWanderer
    Southern Pessimist: Halper also pointed out that basically Biden was admitting that Democrats have no values since they have no budget. · 2 minutes ago

    But the eeeeeeeeeeeeeeevil Wepubwicans might say mean things about the Democrats’ budget and make members of the Democrat party defend it, so they’d rather hide under the table.

    • #8
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    @MelFoil

    Biden’s dad valued bankruptcy?

    • #9
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    @jameslileks

    Perhaps Biden introduced Ryan’s father to lay the groundwork for a talking point: when Ryan’s father died, his son used SS survivor benefits to go to college. Hence, he didn’t built that. Hence, he is a hypocrite.

    It’s a pretty devastating line of attack, considering the Romney-Ryan plank about eliminating Social Security and replacing it with pellets of hard cheese and photocopied dollar bills. 

    • #10
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    @AlPipkin

    So … Biden then sees value in budgets? Hey Joe, where is your budget? Seems it’s been a few years since you had one. Does that mean you don’t value America?

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    @SouthernPessimist

    The photocopied dollar bills is pretty likely. I don’t know if we can afford the hard cheese.

    • #12
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    @elprez

    Is Biden referring to his own father, or to Neil Kinnock’s father?

    • #13
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    @RecoveringLiberal

    I believe the correct phrase is “show me your checkbook, and I’ll show you what you value”.  (i.e., what you actually spend, not what you plan to spend)

    Personally, I didn’t think Biden was being insensitive at all, he was just being Biden.

    • #14
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    @KimK

    Biden sees Ryan’s hair and immediately feels inferior.  He has to make Ryan look bad somehow.

    • #15
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    @ChuckMenoFalls

    sorry SP,  I missed that you already made this point 2hrs prior…

    I’ll take the VP at his word, that his father did indeed stress that your budget defines what you value. 

    Given this lesson he has shared with us, I’m eager to hear how Mr Biden suggests we interpret the values of his political party, and the legislative body he presides above – which has failed to produce a budget in more than 3 years…

    Without clarifying guidance, I may be left to conclude that no budget equates to, well, you get the point.

    • #16
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    @JamesOfEngland
    Recovering Liberal: I believe the correct phrase is “show me your checkbook, and I’ll show you what you value”.  (i.e., what you actually spend, not what you plan to spend)

    Personally, I didn’t think Biden was being insensitive at all, he was just being Biden. · 44 minutes ago

    He was raising his own terrible record of charitable giving? How eccentric!

    • #17
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    @ChrisCampion

    I guess 97 Democratic Senators didn’t value your boss’s budget very much in 2009, did they, Sparky?  Er, I mean “Joe”.  If that’s your real name.  “Joe”. 

    Nice hair, by the way, Joe.  Offsets the face somewhat.

    • #18
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    @MeghanClyne

    See also this, from NRO.

    I actually think Biden was driven to the “my dad is folksier than your dad” spat by insecurity. He doesn’t bring much else to the ticket besides his “working-class kid from Scranton” persona. Putting aside the fact that his youth was neither as hardscrabble nor as Scranton-based as he’s portrayed it, Biden must be panicked now: Here’s an authentically midwestern-nice guy from Wisconsin who actually is still pretty connected to his roots (unlike Biden, who was in the Senate so long and such a creature of it that his flesh presumably fused with his Judiciary Committee chair). Here’s Ryan, who still does normal-guy things like hunt and fish and root for the Packers.  Here’s Ryan, who, in addition to being vastly sharper than Biden (a huge point of insecurity for the VP), might actually just beat him at his own average-dude-charisma game. Hence Joe’s perceived need to prove that he really had the most down-home upbringing of them all.

    • #19
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    @CrowsNest

    Upon hearing of Dad-gate Dustup, MA Senate Candidate Elizabeth Warren had this to say:

    ‘I hear all this “Your Dad said this, Your Dad said that. No. There is no one’s Dad who constructed a sentence on his own. You built a sentence, good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your ideas to market with the diction the rest of us socially constructed.’

    President Obama, concerned by the growing inequality between those who construct thoughts cogently and those that don’t, had this to say at a campaign fundraiser:

    ‘If your Dad spoke a sentence, he didn’t get there on his own. I’m always struck by these people who say that they must be smarter than everyone else because they speak complete thoughts in grammatically correct sentences. There’s a lot of smart people! It must be because I worked harder than anyone else? Let me tell you, there’s a whole bunch of Modern Language Association folks working hard out there.

    Your Dad didn’t build that sentence!’

    • #20
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    @SteveS

    Joe Biden is a fraud.

    Maghan to coin RWR phrase, now your going to have to apologize to “frauds” everywhere.

    • #21

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