Vice President Kamala Harris keeps finding new ways to perform badly in the easiest job in the world, and now she has hit yet another new low, uttering the word that every politician in the United States has known not to say since July 1979: that’s right, our national “malaise” is back.
Harris was on PBS Newshour Thursday when anchor Judy Woodruff asked her about the failure of Old Joe Biden’s socialist agenda. Harris had a ready explanation: Biden’s catastrophic failure was all Americans’ fault. “I fully appreciate that there is a level of malaise,” Harris said. Americans are so tired of the COVID crisis, she explained, that they couldn’t summon up the requisite enthusiasm for Biden’s vision of a workers’ paradise.
Inflation? Skyrocketing gas prices? Americans only cared about such things because they’re seeing everything through their COVID malaise. “We’re two years into this thing, you know,” Harris explained. “People – we want to get back to normal, we all do.” She added some platitudes about “pushing through with solutions” and declared: “Let’s meet the challenges where they are.”
See, the problem is not Joe Biden’s faux presidency, his scripted press conferences, his obvious mental deterioration, or the vacuum at the top it creates. The problem is not that Harris has avoided responsibility throughout her tenure as vice president, avoiding the border after she was put in charge of solving the problem there. The problem is not that she has demonstrated mind-blowing ignorance; when asked about skyrocketing inflation rates, she answered sagely: “Prices have gone up. And families and individuals are dealing with the realities of that bread costs more, that gas costs more.” Yes, and water is wet, and birds fly. The problem is not the attention she has devoted to non-issues that shovel red meat to the blue rubes, such as the all-consuming problem of racist trees.
No, the real problem, as far as Kamala Harris is concerned, is that Americans are not in a good enough frame of mind to appreciate what Old Joe and his handlers want to do for us. The most famous example in relatively recent history of a politician blaming Americans for the nation’s troubles instead of working to solve them was Jimmy Carter, the worst president in American history until Barack Obama and Joe Biden came along.
Jimmy Carter was as sanctimonious as he was inept, and even forty years after he left the Oval Office, America is still paying the price for the damage he wrought during his presidency. He effectively lost his bid for reelection on July 15, 1979, when he commandeered the nation’s television screens in order to scold and hector Americans in what came to be known as his “malaise” speech, although he did not use that word.
“It’s clear,” Carter claimed, “that the true problems of our Nation are…deeper than gasoline lines or energy shortages, deeper even than inflation or recession.” He asserted, “All the legislation in the world can’t fix what’s wrong with America.” What was really threatening the nation, he said, was “a crisis of confidence”: “It is a crisis that strikes at the very heart and soul and spirit of our national will. We can see this crisis in the growing doubt about the meaning of our own lives and in the loss of a unity of purpose for our nation. The erosion of our confidence in the future is threatening to destroy the social and the political fabric of America.”
Carter even foreshadowed the Left’s orgy of statue destruction:
Our people are losing that faith, not only in government itself but in the ability as citizens to serve as the ultimate rulers and shapers of our democracy. As a people we know our past and we are proud of it. Our progress has been part of the living history of America, even the world. We always believed that we were part of a great movement of humanity itself called democracy, involved in the search for freedom; and that belief has always strengthened us in our purpose. But just as we are losing our confidence in the future, we are also beginning to close the door on our past.”
Now the door on the American past is being forcibly closed by Leftists who are determined to force Americans to be ashamed of their own identity and who loudly proclaim that they are worried about the future of our “democracy,” that is, they’re afraid Americans might not vote for them again.
But Carter was no prophet. He was just blaming Americans for his own failure. What he did not address was the extent to which his maladroit handling of the presidency was responsible for the crises the nation faced at the time. The malaise began to lift when he was voted out of office. But it’s back now, thanks to the vice president. And since she and Biden are going to be in office for another three years, the Biden/Harris malaise is likely to get much, much worse.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 23 books including many bestsellers, such as The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), The Truth About Muhammad and The History of Jihad. His latest book is The Critical Qur’an. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.