I'm sorry, did you have a question?

For a taste of what's going on in FL, see this Joe Biden "interview" conducted by Orlando's own Barbara West, news anchor at ABC affiliate WFTV channel 9. (When I was in Orlando, there was another woman at WFTV who, by contrast, made Barbara West seem quite moderate and sane.)

It's not so much an interview, as a list of statements phrased as questions. It's obvious that West is more interested in making these statements than in eliciting information.



If you visit this video on YouTube you'll find some bizarre commentary ("Biden Angered By Tough Questions") from the person who posted it. You'll also find some video replies from various people who evidently took West's semi-rhetorical questions the way I did - as a week attempt to put weird words in Biden's mouth.

By "weird words" I mean like something taken out of a McCarthy-era novel. I don't see an "angry Biden" here; I see a guy who's bemused by questions that sound as though they fell through a time warp from the 1950s. They're "tough" in the sense that it's hard to have a 21st-century conversation about 20th-century concerns. They're "questions" in the sense that they are punctuated with question marks.

Biden answered the less-crazy questions about ACORN (which have already been asked and answered in nationally-broadcast interviews and debates) without any problem, and as for the crazier ones that weren't really questions... you know, I wish he'd actually shown more anger. Barbara West can do all the red-baiting she wishes, but she doesn't need to have Biden there while she does it, and he doesn't need to waste his time listening to it.

I don't know if she was trying to make him lose his temper, but to do so would have required some skill. West's questions were clearly intended to manipulate, but they weren't very artful.

Incidentally, Barbara West is married to Republican strategist Wade West.

3 comments:

Dr. Momentum said...

"Okay, let's move on to the next question."

People want good leadership, not an angry administration. Biden gets a lot of credit for keeping his cool.

Julie said...

"Week attempt"... hahaha... try "weak attempt." Gah. Sometimes I feel like an alien sneaks into my hands while I'm typing.

briwei said...

I agree with the good Dr. I'd be shocked if anyone but the hardcore right thought she was asking objective questions. If anything, her performance was an audition for Fox, fair and balanced as it was.

Biden was cool and collected. He had just the right amount of incredulity.