Friday, May 25, 2012

I love Joe Biden. I mean it. I LOVE Joe Biden

At the TAPS National Military Survivor Seminar and Good Grief Camp in Arlington, Virginia, Joe Biden stood in front of a room full of military families who had lost loved ones in the service of our country.  He stood with his wife, Jill, by his side and spoke from the heart in a voice thick with emotion, talking about his own losses--the deaths of his first wife and 18-month-old daughter in a horrific auto accident when he was but 29 years old and a new senator-elect--but he wasn't looking to one-up that group by telling his own sad story; nor was he asking for pity.

(Image credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)
 He was one of them and he knew how they felt.  At that moment, he dropped the role of Vice President and became just one among many survivor group participants.  He understood how the sudden death of someone you love can send you over the edge, thinking only of ways to relieve the raging, relentless gut pain you feel every time the finality hits:
"It was the first time in my career, in my life, I realized someone could go out -- and I probably shouldn't say this with the press here, but no, but it's more important, you're more important. For the first time in my life, I understood how someone could consciously decide to commit suicide. Not because they were deranged, not because they were nuts; because they had been to the top of the mountain, and they just knew in their heart they would never get there again."
He gave the talk of his life (although he may not know it yet), and out of it came another remarkable confession.  He said when his son Beau finished his tour of duty in the Middle East, he couldn't help but feel guilty.  His son, his beloved son--one of two sons who miraculously survived that horrible accident so many years before--had come home whole when so many other sons and husbands hadn't.  Guilt is not an uncommon feeling among families whose loved ones have survived in places where others have lost their lives, but here was the vice president of the United States, without guile or lofty sense of privilege, confessing feelings rarely spoken out loud by anybody.   (Rachel Maddow played an extended clip of his speech. You can watch it here.)

In his next speech, reported to be against Mitt Romney, it'll be political business as usual.  In the coming days there will be repeats of those moments when his struggle for the right words will fit into the goofy category--fine fodder for the foaming media lightweights.  But he proved his mettle today, in a way that few politicians ever do.

Joe Biden is a good man.  He may be one of our best when it comes to showing us how one can be a career politician and a caring, feeling human being at the same time.  I want him to be the vice president for the next four years, and if he wants the presidency after that, I'll work my heart out for him.

And let no one try to tell me he's not worthy.



19 comments:

  1. I agree Joe Biden is a treasure.

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    1. Thanks for weighing in, Gene. He's a keeper!

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    2. I just loved his bankruptcy bill. Thanks, Joe.

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    3. Anon, show me a politician you can agree with 100% of the time and I'll eat this column whole. Joe's no saint. He's human. And here he showed his humanity. That's worth noting.

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  2. That was awesome. Thanks Joe, you actually get it.

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  3. Joe 'Senator MBNA' Biden is personally responsible for a lot of the misery we're going through today.

    Have you forgotten his role in the disastrous bankruptcy bill? Yeah, that legislation of which Obama said at the Democratic National Convention the first time around "now is the time to change our bankruptcy laws..." (which of course he didn't mean because this legislation was a Joe Biden special).
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    http://www.nndb.com/people/023/000027939/
    Over his long career in the Senate, Biden's biggest financial supporter was the credit card company MBNA, until it was swallowed by Bank of America. His son, Hunter Biden, was hired as a management trainee at MBNA straight out of law school, and was quickly promoted to executive vice president.

    Yes there were some other sneaky dems supporting the credit card industry

    http://www.salon.com/2005/03/10/bankrupt/
    They even rejected an amendment that would have put a 30 percent ceiling on the interest rates credit card companies can charge. Thirty percent — that’s more than Paulie Walnuts charges. But 74 U.S. senators — including John Kerry, Harry Reid, Barack Obama and Dick Durbin — clearly thought that wasn’t high enough.
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    But it was Biden who led the way to the trough.

    By the way, I watched all 3 days of the Anita Hill hearings and Joe Biden was a nasty, sneering, leering, arrogant piece of work who did not but talk down to that woman and make her look like she was the one who asked HER to testify.

    Joe is really something.

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    1. Yes, there's some nasty business going on in our gov'mint and I hate it as much as you do, but really--Joe Biden is personally responsible for a lot of the misery. . .? I'm not buying it.

      Vote Republican, why don't you? With this new Wild Bunch you can't even imagine what misery is until they get their hands on us.

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  4. I did 3 years in the military 65-68, never left the States and never handled a military weapon after Basic. I know I served my country and did what i was supposed to do but still, even today, feel a tinge of guilt that I was not in Vietnam so I know what Joe and his sons feel.

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    1. Anon, nobody but you guys who served can understand any of the feelings about military duty. I thank you for your two cents here and for your service.

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  5. Joe Biden is definitely underrated. I don't know why he didn't get more praise for his performance against Sarah Palin in the 2008 debate: he was a truly down-to-earth person vs. her folksy shtick.

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  6. I guess because Palin was the Celebrity du Jour and he was just Joe? But in the end he showed 'em! There were many who thought Obama was crazy for choosing Biden, but I guess he knew what he was doing. He needed a down-home guy to counter his Harvard image.

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  7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  8. Oh, no. . .that can't possibly be. But we'll share, okay?

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  9. Lookie, you! You're probably married. He's MINE!

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  10. Sigh. . .I will back away slowly. Trying not to burst your little bubble by telling you HE'S MARRIED, TOO!! Lolololol

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  11. You are so cruel. Details shmetails...

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  12. It's going to have to be platonic, honey, but he'll appreciate your support come 2016!

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  13. Platonic is fine for him. For me, my imagination can go crazy.

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