Biden team argues that all unflattering videos of him are fake, but that’s not true

I think I’ll do some trash-talking today.

Not my style, I know. But indulge me here.

The two candidates spend so much time and energy denigrating and denouncing each other that you really can’t cover this campaign without delving into that. Even when the charges and counter-charges are false, misleading or based on digital manipulation.

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Let’s start with Joe Biden’s alleged “frozen” moment, at least according to his detractors. The trash-talk tally: This guy is really out of it, always seems to be wandering aimlessly.

On Sunday, the campaign released footage of the star-studded L.A. fundraiser that raised $30 million. Biden and Barack Obama are waving to the crowd. Biden, 81, stops for a few seconds and is basking in the thunderous cheers. He wasn’t dazed or confused, just taking in the moment.

But what Obama did next is inexplicable. He knows his former VP has been under a constant barrage as frail and confused. Yet he literally took Biden’s hand to lead him off the stage, then kept his hand on the president’s back as they walked. 

Not a single second of that video was distorted in any way. Nobody had to. Everyone could watch it and make up their own minds.

But Karine Jean-Pierre was unusually aggressive in attacking distorted videos of her boss. What the Biden White House, the Biden campaign and its media defenders are trying to make people believe that any video that portrays the president in an unflattering light is a “deepfake” or “cheapfake,” to use the press secretary’s words. Cheap, maybe, but not always fake.

That effort conflates two very different situations. The New York Post seemed to follow the RNC’s lead in running a cropped photo of Biden staring into space at the G-7 – when he was actually talking to and giving a thumbs up to skydivers who had landed a few feet away, before the Italian prime minister pulled him back to the group of world leaders.

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But the embarrassing moment on the Los Angeles stage was totally real and not manipulated in any way. 

Meanwhile, the author of a new book who spent many hours interviewing Trump reports that the former president has a poor memory. Trash-talking tally: This 78-year-old guy keeps attacking his opponent as mentally clueless when he’s not playing with a full deck? 

Ramin Setoodeh, co-editor-in-chief of Variety and author of a book on “The Apprentice,” reports that Trump has “severe memory issues.”.

Biden looks off while with G7 leaders

“He couldn’t even remember me. We spent an hour together in 2021, in May, and then a few months later, I went back to the White House, I went back to Trump Tower to talk to him about his time in the White House. And I said, he had this vacant look on his face. And I said,’ Do you remember me?’ And he said, ‘No.’ He had no recollection of our lengthy interview that we had, and he wasn’t doing a lot of interviews at that time.”

In an excerpt in the Washington Post, he writes: “Once we get started, he keeps extending our time together, which would spill over into follow-up appointments. 

‘Okay, so why don’t we do another meeting?’ is how he’d usually end our sessions.

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“I never know when our afternoons together will end. There is always the possibility that if things went extremely well, Trump could keep talking at me through dinner, and maybe I’d have to excuse myself to escape from him.

Trump spokesman Steven Cheung, like his boss, hit back hard, telling Newsweek: “President Trump was aware of who this individual was throughout the interview process, but this ‘writer’ is a nobody and insignificant so of course he never made an impression. After recognizing the importance of The Apprentice and its significant cultural impact on a global scale, this ‘writer’ has now chosen to allow Trump Derangement Syndrome to rot his brain like so many other losers whose entire existence revolves around President Trump.”

Trump and Biden recent split image

All right, I’ll give my trash talk a rest. The media need to intensify their efforts to separate truth from fiction. But most voters don’t have time to watch a three-minute video and examine different angles. They may just see a five-second clip or a single image.

In the end, maybe all the attacks cancel each other out. Maybe people throw up their hands and don’t know what to believe. Maybe, without even getting into AI, there will be a fatal erosion of belief in media institutions that are already widely distrusted. 

And that is a depressing thought. 

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