These people have been on the Government Teat too long.
I arrived back at our place in California just as the Vice Presidential "Debate" was beginning, so, still zzzzz-y from the long drive, I sat down to listen to and watch a bit of it. At least Martha Raddatz was awake, I'll give her that, and she maintained some sort of control of the boys.
Well, that was my impression. Both Biden and Ryan came across as boys, literal adolescents having at one another, more for fun and for show than for any real object at all, because both of these boys know that no matter who eventually sits in the Big Chair (and the not-quite-so Big Chair nearby) the strings will still be pulled by the same people, and the results will be about the same because the goal is the same: Empire, economic calamity (for the masses), and some sort of permanence, ie: "certainty" for the High and the Mighty.
There were times when Ryan came across as just a punk, which seems to be his personality in any case, but I don't know that my judgement about these things is actually valid any more, being as that I'm more of a codger these days than not.
By his advanced years -- 70 now, is he? -- Biden should have come across as the Doddering Old Count puttering around the Palace since he's been in office (thus part of the Palace culture) for nearly all his life (wasn't he first elected when he was a twenty-something... punk?) Well, maybe that's how younger people saw him last night, but I myself saw him more as the older frat brother slapping around some random pledge. Ryan wasn't a real person to Biden (I don't know that anyone who speaks in constant sound bites and talking points could be mistaken for "real" in any case). He was an object, a cat toy.
For his part, Ryan seemed to enjoy it, but then he loves him some attention, doesn't he?
The world Ryan wants for the rest of us is one of submission, misery and despair. Apparently, this grows out of his religious faith somehow; but then I guess after the rejection of the reforms of Vatican II (now 50 years ago) the Church really does want to go back to submission, misery and despair for all except the Highest of the Mighty for whom no flattery is out of bounds.
Biden is old enough to remember Vatican II and the reforms that resulted, and like the Rebel Nuns, he seems to think that that now antiquated version of the Church ought to still mean something. Yes, well. Good luck with that.
How did misery for all (except those on top) become the standard outlook for the younger generation?
Do they even realize it?
But there is no less misery misery in Biden's future vision, such as it is.
And this is why both of these boys are basically Bubble Boys, living in the Palace of Versailles, completely divorced from the People they ostensibly serve.
Yes, they have personally suffered somewhat in ways that many of us can relate to, but I'm not at all sure that either of them can relate their own suffering and loss to what the millions encounter. On the other hand, I can easily imagine them ordering the masses to "suck it up like I did." True empathy is not really a strong suit of Versailles.
Back in the day, Versailles was "open." Anyone who could make their way to the Chateau was admitted so long as they were unarmed. They had essentially free rein to roam the corridors and grand salons at will; many were able to directly encounter one or another royal functionary, count, or duc, and it was even possible for the unwashed to encounter and directly petition the King Himself -- though such encounters were rare. In a sense therefore, the Ancien Regime was at least theoretically in closer touch with the masses than our own isolated and heavily protected Royals are. When the déluge came, therefore, the Anciens were not entirely unaware that the People were, shall we say, discontent.
These days, however, it is not at all certain that those who have lived in a version of Versailles all their supposedly adult lives -- like Biden and Ryan to take but two -- have any idea that the masses are not altogether delighted with them.
After his Victorious Performance at the previous "debate" with Obama, Romney attempted to adopt the trappings of Royalty, asserting his "interest" in and "care" for "all the People," but it is obviously a charade, something he knows he is supposed to do which he doesn't carry off very well. Ryan doesn't have to play that game -- and he doesn't -- any more than Biden does.
They're just boys playing. Doing what they do.
Somehow, I am not reassured.