PULLING A BIDEN
Posted by Andrew Roman on March 2, 2010
The meanings of words change over time. New words find their way into the American lexicon, while others fade away into the recesses of classic literature and old celluloid. Some words that started out as slang can become “normalized” and stick around for a long time. Others have a short shelf life.
For instance, the word “cool” seems to transcend time – “that’s cool” – while others, such as “groovy” and “swell,” are prisoners of their time.
Then there are instances when a word becomes part of the language because of an obvious void. Sometimes specificity is needed.
Let’s look at the word “lie” for a moment.
Knowingly telling a falsehood with the intent to deceive is a lie. Most everyone knows that.
Most also know that not all lies are equal.
For instance, there are necessary, peace-keeping kind of lies:
-Concerned Wife: Honey, does this shirt make me look fat?
-Harrowed Husband: No, dear. Not at all.
Then there are the more egregious, “Do you really think we’re that dumb” type of lies:
–Lying President: I did not have sexual relations with that woman.
Then there’s the Vice President Joe Biden kind of lie – a special kind of deceit in a category all its own, worthy of its own word. You might call it the “Sky isn’t blue, although it’s obviously blue if you just look at it” lie.
Soon, it will be known as pulling a “biden.”
When one asserts a falsehood that is obviously untrue – provably untrue – and he or she knows it’s not true, but says it is anyway, and does so because there is no other way to make a point that otherwise cannot be made by sane human beings without ingesting fairy dust, and those who are witness to the lie stand there dumbfounded, gaping, wondering why the padded trucks have not yet arrived, and no one is really taking him or her seriously anyway – kind of like that crazy Uncle who only visits at Thanksgiving and wants to talk to you about his mucus buildup – one is said to be pulling a “biden.”
Joe Biden, indeed, pulled a classic “biden” in Orlando, Florida yesterday, talking about what he perceived as the grand successes of President Barack Obama’s year-old Recovery Act – a.k.a, the Stimulus Bill, a.k.a. steaming crap – saying, “There’s no economist now that says the Recovery Act hasn’t created or saved at least two million jobs.”
Not one, says the Vice President.
Every economist on the face of planet earth says that the Obama Spendulous Bill has created or saved two million jobs.
And the math is simple, according to Joe:
“When you lose eight million jobs in this Great Recession, and you keep it from being ten, that’s no solace to the eight million who don’t have a job, man.”
In other words, if not for Obama, ten million jobs would have been lost, instead of eight … hence, two million saved or created.
This is another way of pulling a “biden” – saying something that cannot be disproven because the premise on which the assertion is made is completely made up, but otherwise sounds pretty cool to a crowd full of libs. (Remember, the word “cool” transcends time).
Using the Biden method – or being “bidonian” – I can say, for instance, I “saved” my wife’s job because I didn’t send in a letter to her supervisor threatening his life and signing her name to it. Because of my inaction, she’s still employed. In essence, I saved her job by doing nothing – which is precisely what the Stimulus Bill did … nothing.
It’s all very bidenesque.
But I can’t help but wonder … since the criteria for what constitutes a “saved” or “created” job is so jumbled, ill-defined and convoluted, why didn’t the Veep claim that three million jobs were saved? Or five million? What’s the difference anymore?
I ask the same kind of question when it comes to the minimum wage. Why not make it $15 an hour? Or $25? Or $100?
As far as my original point is concerned, please note that the word “biden” can be used as a noun: He’s pulling a biden. Did you catch the biden that came out of his mouth yesterday?
It can be used as a verb: She’s gonna biden her Dad about the scratch on the car.
It’ll work as an adjective: That speech was very biden.
It’ll even fly as an adverb: The governor is bidenly effective.
It’s also a joke – as in, “Joe Biden is ourVice President.”
Incidentally, in the spirit of openness and hospitality, I offer these to Vice President Joe Biden: Dan Mitchell, J.D. Foster and Lawrence Katz, among many many others.
… three very well-known economists who don’t subscribe to the two million jobs fairy tale.
You’re welcome, Joe.