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Biden's 2024 campaign is a game of Trivial Pursuit against Trump because he's out of ideas

OpinionBiden's 2024 campaign is a game of Trivial Pursuit against Trump because he's out of ideas

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What could be worse than an American president looking…silly? As he increasingly focuses on truly trivial pursuits – title fees, shrinkflation and ice-cream machines — that’s what’s happening to Joe Biden. 

We’re all getting used to the notion that Joe Biden, ostensibly the most powerful man in the world (No Joke! As he might say) needs to be led around like a puppy on a leash. And that he frequently ducks questions by saying he’s “not allowed” to speak freely, though the evasion rankles. Not allowed by whom?  Who is setting those guidelines?

But it isn’t just the president’s obvious dimness that creates a perception of weakness. It’s also that much of what Biden addresses is small potatoes – like his absorption with “convenience” fees on concert tickets and declaration of war against title insurance.  

FEDERAL GOVERNMENT WANTS MCDONALD’S BROKEN-DOWN ICE CREAM MACHINES FIXED

Why this dumbing-down of the president’s role? Because he has no answers for the big issues – the problems that are crushing his approval ratings. He won’t cut spending to staunch inflation, won’t revisit Trump’s policies that curbed illegal immigration and won’t buck soft-on-crime progressives in his party.

What’s left? Trivia.

Polls show Americans are hurting financially; those surveys also indicate that they blame Biden’s policies for their pain. Airing a silly Super Bowl ad about “shrinkflation” and whining about puny Snickers bars doesn’t solve the serious problems facing our country. 

Unimaginably, Biden’s latest focus further lowers the bar. The president has decided to launch a full-court press targeting broken soft-serve ice cream machines. Seriously. More specifically, Biden’s Federal Trade Commission, led by 35-year-old ideologue Lina Khan who’s normally busy attacking businesses, is teaming up with the Department of Justice to address the horror of malfunctioning ice cream makers. 

This past week, those agencies petitioned the U.S. Copyright Office to exempt “commercial soft serve machines” from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, legislation which prevents franchise owners of fast-food outfits like McDonald’s from fixing their own machines or hiring an unsanctioned repair company. 

You might wonder why the federal government has any jurisdiction in this matter, but you ask in vain. There are now more than 200,000 pages in the Code of Federal Regulations; buried in that pile of legal goop is the relevant rule. 

Relevant to whom, you might ask? Why should the federal government take any notice of soft-serve ice cream? Is this deep dive from 30,000 federal feet into what would appear to be a company matter further evidence of Joe Biden’s ice cream addiction? Was he put off by a shortage of soft serve at a recent rest stop on the campaign trail?

BIDEN BLAMES BUSINESSES FOR ‘SHRINKFLATION,’ BUT HE’S FORGETTING A CRITICAL REALITY

This intervention is especially ripe for ridicule, but it is not a one-off. Consider his State of the Union pledge to ban title insurance. Most people have never even thought about the injustice of requiring title insurance for government-backed mortgages, nor will they now. This is a dinky fee, amounting to 0.5%-1.0% of the home purchase price. Rocket Mortgage describes it as a “valuable policy that protects both the home buyer and lender from financial loss caused by title defects. Title insurance is well worth the small investment when it comes to protecting your finances.” 

Why would Biden highlight removing title insurance? Because young people, a critical leg of the Biden-Obama coalition, are abandoning the president in droves, and one of the issues often cited for their disaffection is – not title insurance, to be sure – but the inflated cost of buying a home. 

Given that higher mortgage rates have not driven down house prices, the cost of buying a starter home for young families has roughly doubled since Biden became president. People who bought their homes several years ago, before out-of-control Democrat spending sparked 40-year high inflation and subsequently jacked up interest rates, cannot afford to move. There is, consequently, a shortage of homes on the market, which has caused the price of the average house to soar 18% since Biden took office

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Real estate firm Zillow reports: “Home Buyers Need to Earn $47,000 More Than in 2020” and “The income needed to comfortably afford a home is up 80% since 2020, while median income has risen 23% in that time.” 

This is a serious matter, and to be fair, the president also proposed “an annual tax credit that will give Americans $400 a month for the next two years as mortgage rates come down to put toward their mortgage when they buy a first home or trade up for a little more space.” That suggestion will be up to Congress, which is unlikely to pass that or any of Biden’s other tax redoes in his recently released budget which, cumulatively, proposes to hike taxes by $5.1 trillion over the next ten years. Yes, but, compared to those junk fees…   

And what about those junk fees? This initiative is described in a bill introduced last year by Connecticut Democrat Sen. Richard Blumenthal which attracted essentially zero co-sponsors or interest until the White House pounced on it. It insinuates the long arm of the federal bureaucracy into the workings of concert managers, hotel keepers and other groups that sometimes attach a “convenience fee” or some other charge to a transaction. It also targets airlines, forcing them to seat children next to their parents which, one presumes, air carriers already do. 

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While consumers may be irked by “hidden fees”, they are more concerned that the price of butter has shot up 27% while he has been president, the cost of electricity is up over 23% and gasoline is up 38%. Those costs matter, especially since the St. Louis Federal Reserve reports that real income has flatlined since Biden took office. 

Someone should tell Biden: Trivial Pursuit is a game, not a campaign.

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