Opinion

‘Vacant Stare, Inappropriate Smiles’: US Psychiatrist Analyses Biden’s Performance at 1st Presser

On 25 March, Joe Biden took questions from reporters for the first time since his inauguration in January. Dr Carole Lieberman, a board-certified psychiatrist and best-selling author based in Beverly Hills, California has analysed the performance of the 46th president amid growing speculation about his health.

Sputnik: Why do you think it is time to invoke the 25th Amendment after watching President Biden’s first solo press conference?

Carole Lieberman: You probably have the same fairy tale – ‘the Emperor has no clothes. It’s the story of an emperor who walked down the street, he wanted to have these fine clothes and the tailors pretended they were making him a fine outfit. They were just playing a joke on him. He walked down the street parading and he was naked, he was wearing no clothes. And there was a little boy who cried out, “the emperor has no clothes”. Everybody else was pretending that everything was fine. That is kind of the situation that we have here, that…  now, of course, fewer and fewer people are pretending that everything is fine because after the press conference, it is obvious.

I am a psychiatrist, but you don’t really have to be a psychiatrist after the press conference to see that there is definitely something wrong with Biden’s thinking, his memory and so on. I called it before the election. I tried to warn people and I called it encroaching dementia. In other words, the early stages of dementia.

Sputnik: What signs of possible unwellness did you see during the speech? Is it something he said or is it his body language?

Carole Lieberman: It was a number of things. This has actually been getting worse over time. That is one of the most concerning things – that over the last six months or more, he has been having more of these signs.

For example, one sign is his eyes. He seemed to have a vacant stare when he was looking out at the audience. It didn’t seem like he had… that there was something behind his eyes. Another example is sometimes he smiled inappropriately. Another example is – and he did this during the campaign – he would say, “where am I?” People took it yesterday, like, where am I trying to find the next person to call on, the next reporter and so on. But he has used that expression, ‘where am I?’ lots of times. And some of the times was where he actually literally looked lost, physically lost, disoriented.

He twisted some of his words. He said things like “when I came to the Senate one hundred and twenty years ago”. And clearly, he didn’t pick up on his mistake. It would be one thing to say that kind of mistake and then say, well, what am I saying? It wasn’t one hundred and twenty years ago, but he didn’t say that.

Since his election, he has continued to talk in some of his speeches, off-the-cuff speeches. This is the first press conference, but he has said at other times, things that make it seem like… ‘I’m running’. For example, yesterday he said ‘I’m running for three reasons’. And he talked about transparency and rebuilding the backbone of America, uniting the country and so on. But – I’m running? He already ran and he is president.

It’s very disturbing. I feel very sorry for him. I feel very concerned for America. I think we need someone who is more aware.

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