Friday, September 07, 2012

The tell

I've always felt that, as the Kitty Kallen song has it, little things mean a lot.  In his speech last night, Joe Biden referred to the President at least twice as "Barack."  Not "President Obama," or "Barack Obama," just Barack.  He didn't do so with any self-consciousness, nor was he showing off.  He was just talking about his boss,  his colleague and his friend.

The casual use of the President's first name tells us something.  Not that the Vice-President lacks the proper respect.  Admiration and awe, rather than mere respect, were apparent though out Biden's speech.  But more than that, we could see that the two have a partnership, that the Vice-President is the President's top aide.  Where many vice-presidents have been shunted aside, this one is right there, offering advice on a wide range of issues.  I think that's a good thing.  Indeed, a very good thing, and not just if the unthinkable happens and Joe Biden succeeds to the presidency in the next four years.   

And it's clear that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan do not--could not--have that kind of partnership.  Would they ever develop something like that, if given the chance?  We can't know.  (And if I have my way, we'll never get the chance to find out.)

You can see Joe Biden's speech here, if you missed it, and it's well worth watching.

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