I miss former White House PressSec Jenn Psaki like a hangover, so say what you will about new PressSec Karine Jean-Pierre’s competence, but she’s endlessly entertaining.
Jean-Pierre has been on the job for — what, two weeks or so? — and already you could compile a Greatest Whiffs collection of her gaffes and flubs.
That she also happens to be the public face of the Presidentish Joe Biden Gaffe-O-Matic cleanup crew is just the icing on this White House’s inedible cake of irony.
20 years of cocktail-fueled blogging, and “inedible cake of irony” is probably the silliest line I’ve ever been tempted to write. What can I say, this Biden crew inspires me.
Before we get to that Greatest Whiffs collection (I really did make one), here’s the latest from Jean-Pierre.
DOOCY: "A gallon of gas costs more than people on the federal minimum wage are making an hour. What does the White House want these people to do?"
Jean-Pierre: "The President understands what it feels like…he understands that feeling personally." pic.twitter.com/EDV2hgVI4p
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) May 31, 2022
Biden’s net worth was estimated at $9 million in 2019, up from $27 thousand the year he became Vice President. Wikipedia attributes that growth to book sales and speaking fees, making no mention of the ten percent owed to the “Big Guy” or his $5.2 million in “unexplained” income from 2017–2019.
Being a gaffe-prone former veep is a lucrative business. Somehow.
Can you picture former Vice President/pre-President Biden swiping his ATM card in the Conoco pump, filling the tank himself, and then driving his Prius to a $200,000 speaking engagement? Me, neither. His benefactors sent planes and limos to fetch him.
It’s a good bet that Biden hasn’t filled his own gas tank since approximately 2009, when the average price of gas was $2.35.
Today, Biden travels almost exclusively by one of three means.
First, there’s “The Beast” presidential limo. Its curb weight is believed to be between 15,000 and 20,000 pounds. That’s 3.5 to five times the weight of a single average American car. “The Beast” ain’t electric, so we’ll assume that it gets gas mileage somewhere between “low” and “M-1 Abrams Main Battle Tank.”
Then there’s Marine One, the callsign of whichever specially-designated Marine helicopter the president happens to be flying on, typically to Joint Base Andrews and Camp David. In 2017 — back when Donald Trump was president and the press still cared about such things — Time sneeringly reported on the wastefulness of a single $24,000 Marine One flight. With the price of fuel these days, it’s safe to say that Biden’s Marine One flights cost more than Trump’s did.
Finally, there’s that blue and white flying symbol of American power and wealth: Air Force One. That’s a real beast, and it costs $140,000 to fly — per hour. Again, that’s a 2017 estimate, back when the Complicit Media cared much more about what it cost to keep American presidents in the style to which they’ve become accustomed. The (unexpected!) emergence of Bidenflation means that cost-per-flight-hour has gone nowhere but up, up, and away.
I don’t actually mind those expenses, except for the defense contractors screwing us on the front end with inflated procurement costs and on the back end with inflated maintenance costs.
Those comparative minor gripes aside, there’s no getting around the fact that maintaining and transporting the chief executive of the world’s sole superpower is an expensive proposition.
What does rankle is Jean-Pierre claiming that this guy “understands what it feels like…he understands that feeling personally,” when Americans need to spend $65 to $100 or even more just to fill ‘er up.
I refuse to entertain the “He feels your pain” musings of the underling for an increasingly senescent, scheming mediocrity who made himself rich suckling on the government teat.
If there’s a poster boy for white privilege, it has to be Biden.
I do have to rant about just one other thing before we get to that Jean-Pierre Greatest Whiffs collection.
Tony Bennett had a small appearance on some TV show I was watching about ten years ago, probably a Top Chef finale at the Aspen Food & Wine Classic. They showed a little of Bennett backstage, and it was painfully clear that he was probably only about two-thirds cognizant of where he was. Bennett, in his mid-80s at the time, was being guided around like…well, like you see Biden being guided around at events.
But once he got on stage, in front of that mic, Bennett still knew exactly what to do. His voice, his presence, his impeccable phrasing were all there in full force.
A couple of years later, Bennett was officially diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and has basically been retired since last year. Still, even with the early signs of dementia showing ten years ago, you’d be a fool (or a music-hater) to get between him and a jazz combo and a mic.
Something similar could be said about Biden.
Old Joe isn’t all there anymore, but he still knows exactly what to do with Other People’s Money. He might need help putting his pants on right-side-out, but don’t get in between the Big Guy and a big take.
He still knows how to dole it out and he still knows how to take his cut — and nothing Jean-Pierre might claim about his “real” experiences can cover for Biden’s real privilege.
Now, how about those Jean-Pierre clips I promised?
Peter Doocy asks why Joe Biden is going to visit Buffalo, NY but he didn't visit Waukesha after a deadly terror attack by a racist black supremacist:
"I mean, he's visited many communities, um, Buffalo. you know? He’s able to go tomorrow”pic.twitter.com/D2Npj7EOeZ
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) May 16, 2022
Doocy: "How does raising taxes on corporations lower the cost of gas, the cost of a used car, the cost of food, for everyday Americans?"
Jean-Pierre: "We encourage those who have done very well, especially those who care about climate change, to support a fairer tax code." pic.twitter.com/rcvptEkgPN
— Washington Free Beacon (@FreeBeacon) May 16, 2022
Did I mention she hasn’t even been on the job for three weeks?
Lots more gaffes to come!