PODCAST: Is Joe Going to Make It?
I have studied Winston Churchill for many years and consider him the most fascinating man of the 20th century. I have read several books regarding Britain’s former Prime Minister (P.M.) and visited his home in Chartwell, but I recently read, “Churchill Taken from the Diaries of Lord Moran,” aka Dr. Charles McMoran Wilson, Churchill’s personal physician who tended to him since he was appointed P.M. in 1940, until his death in 1965. The voluminous book was published in 1966 shortly thereafter, and created a furor by the family who saw it as a violation of patient/physician privilege. Moran actually did us a favor as he was able to articulate a lot of what passed through the P.M.’s mind on key issues, such as World War II, the Iron Curtain and the Cold War, and a remarkable grasp of the implications of the Hydrogen bomb. The two possessed a great friendship and Moran saw him almost on a daily basis and accompanied him on his many travels. If Moran’s relationship with Churchill is correct, the P.M. would certainly not have a problem with the book and would have toasted the author.
However, this article is concerned with President Joe Biden and his ability to lead. I mention Churchill because in 1955 at age 80, he was coming to the end of the line, and he knew it. He provided 60 years of public service and his achievements were great. It was not just his words, but his deeds that led the Allied coalition. Had Churchill not existed, it is unlikely the world would be the same as he brokered relationships not just between Russia and the United States, but a coalition of smaller countries as well.
As Churchill neared his 80th birthday, members of his Tory party and cabinet ministers began whispering of his mental and physical fitness to lead the Empire. He was losing his hearing and attention span, and had trouble walking due to old age and suffering from two minor strokes during his lifetime. Winston’s aides became afraid he would say something out of line, a condition which also concerned the P.M. Yet, he managed to hold on and make some important speeches regarding international affairs and domestic policy. The public loved the “Old Lion” but knew he was losing his grip. To his credit, Churchill designed a succession plan whereby Anthony Eden ascended to Prime Minister, followed by Harold Macmillan, both capable of the position.
As an aside, I have always believed Churchill was one of the few people who used both sides of his brain; he was creative and mischievous, yet was also a logical thinker who could solve difficult problems through invention, political tactics, and communications, something he was particularly adept at.
Frankly, there is little to compare Joe Biden to Winston Churchill, other than their physical and mental spryness at around the same age. It appears President Biden is more physically fit than Churchill, but in terms of mental acuity, you have to give the nod to Churchill. The P.M. simply burned out physically. The President, on the other hand, appears to be an old man in his dotage.
So what condition is the President truly in? The American public would like to know. According to CNN, “The last extensive update on Biden’s medical state came in December 2019, when the doctor he eventually recruited to serve as White House physician described him as ‘a healthy, vigorous, 77-year-old male, who is fit to successfully execute the duties of the Presidency.’”
Biden, hasn’t released a medical statement since, but a White House spokesman claims he will have an examination later this year. I will be curious to see if the News Media takes the same intense interest as they did for President Trump. Probably not.
If it is true the President is not mentally fit to lead the country, one has to wonder who is running the store behind the scenes? Former President Obama? The Cabinet? Is it on auto-pilot? It certainly cannot be Vice President Kamala Harris who appears to be a neophyte in her new role as VP.
Towards the end, Churchill was blessed to have a sound cabinet around him. They would take care of the minutia, but it was the Prime Minster who led the way and was clearly in charge. Nonetheless, they were concerned about his future and whether a new election would be called in 1955.
Consider this conversation about retirement between Churchill and Lord Moran in 1955:
Moran: “They (WSC’s inner circle and cabinet ministers) took it for granted that you were finished as a politician. I felt from the first you were more likely to snuff out if you retired.”
Winston: “Yes, I felt like that.”
Moran: “But Clemmie (WSC’s wife), Christopher, Max and Camrose didn’t (his inner circle). They did their damnedest to get me to agree with them. They were afraid you would collapse in the House of Commons or blunder in the Cabinet, or make some gaffe in public. They were thinking of your reputation, while I was concerned with your health and your peace of mind.”
Winston: “Perhaps – you were both right.”
There is one inescapable fact we must contend with, specifically, President Biden will turn 79 on November 20th, that’s now less than four months away. So who is worrying about the health and longevity of the President? Unless a medical examination is performed to pacify the public, we may never know.
Keep the Faith!
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