Joe Biden is old. Donald Trump is also old. A legitimate concern about old people in important positions is that they are or may become cognitively impaired (For example, the prevalence of dementia doubles every five years from age 65 onward, which means that on average an 80-year-old is is eight times more likely to have dementia than a 65 year old).
Recently, Trump has been saying things that suggest he’s becoming deeply confused about some very basic and simple facts.
For example, this weekend he gave a speech in which he seemed to be under the impression that Jeb Bush had as president launched the second Iraq war:
In a speech on Friday, Trump claimed he defeated Barack Obama in the 2016 presidential election. He also said he was leading Obama “by a lot” in the 2024 presidential election polls.
All this tends to get subsumed into the “Donald Trump lies and says wacky things all the time” category, but these sorts of mistakes don’t seem like lies or hyperbolic statements, but rather the sorts of mistakes that old people who are slipping mentally make, because they’re getting confused and forgetful.
Here it’s worth noting that by the time of next summer’s GOP convention, Trump will already be older than Ronald Reagan was on Reagan’s last day in office — and Reagan was clearly losing his marbles by that point. Trump also has a family history of dementia, which is a significant risk factor in terms of developing it himself.
Meanwhile, minor verbal slips on Biden’s part — for example he claimed recently that he was at the 9/11 Twin Towers site the day after the attack, when in fact it was nine days later — are treated by Even the Liberal Media as either brazen lies or unimpeachable signs of creeping Alzheimer’s disease.
I think it’s silly to deny that Biden’s age isn’t a legitimate concern in the abstract. Yet based on the currently available evidence, Trump’s age is, given his recent ramblings, a bigger concern. Nevertheless, Biden’s age is harped on ceaselessly by the media, while Trump apparently needs to pull a lampshade over his head and start talking about how people used to wear onions on their belts before the same media will even begin to talk about the exact same issue in regard to him, and one that, given his recent behavior, seems much more salient as a practical matter.