President Bush’s infamous “Mission Accomplished” speech has gone down in the American public consciousness as one of the most ridiculous victory speeches given, considering that it came years before the US pulled out of Iraq and that that conflict was never really won.
However, we might now have another, similarly ridiculous example to add to the lineup of political folly brought about by premature announcement. That’s President Brandon’s claim that the supply chain battle has been “won.” Perhaps he’ll land on one of the cargo ships stuck outside LA harbor to declare “mission accomplished.” Here’s what happened.
On Wednesday, Brandon declared that the supply chain is in “very strong shape” as America heads into the Christmas season. During the speech, Biden said “It’s not because of luck. We averted potential crisis by figuring out what needed to get fixed, and then we brought the people together to do the hard work of fixing it.”
He then dismissed claims of empty shelves and stores around the nation, boldly declaring that “For the vast majority of the country that’s not what’s happening” and that “Because of the actions the administration has taken in partnership with business and labor, retailers and grocery stores, freight movers and railroads, those shelves are going to be stocked.”
All of that would be great, as the supply chain crisis has been a major problem for stores trying to stock their shelves and for consumers trying to buy food and goods from stores around the nation.
No American wants to be standing outside in a Soviet-style bread line, so an actual victory over the problem would have been welcome news.
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The problem is that Biden’s “mission accomplished” declaration, like President Bush’s, is simply untrue.
For example, one of Biden’s main points was that the number of container ships waiting to unload in LA harbor, a massively important port that offloads about 40% of the goods coming into America, has decreased by 40%.
That’s good progress, but hardly enough for a triumphal “victory” declaration. A 40% reduction, after all, means that a massive number of ships are still waiting to offload their goods. Even if the number waiting went from 100, 60, that still means that 60 ships would be waiting outside the port, wasting time and delaying the delivery of those goods, some of which are perishable.
Furthermore, the 40% figure given isn’t even accurate, as Just the News noted:
Biden and Seroka are correct that the number of ships at anchor or loitering has decreased — but only for those vessels within 40 miles of the ports.
Overall, the logjam of cargo ships remains as severe as ever. The reason why is simple: Since last month, a new queuing system has encouraged and led many ships to move outside of the ports’ 40-mile zone to a Safety and Air Quality Area (SAQA) that extends 150 miles to the west of the ports and 50 miles to the north and south.
[…]The sharply reduced count of 44 ships anchored offshore includes only those ships waiting within the 40-mile zone as of midday Tuesday, according to data from the Marine Exchange of Southern California. American Shipper estimated that there were another 50 container ships waiting outside the SAQA, making for a total of 94 ships.
And that’s just considering the goods waiting to flow through LA. Once they’re offloaded, they still have to be transported around the country, something that’s not being helped by Biden’s demands that all truckers get vaccinated, which a huge number of truckers are claiming they’ll refuse to do. Their refusal would decimate American supply chains.
So, no, there has been no victory. The number of ships waiting near LA is as high as it was when the infamous photos were taken, the only difference being that now they’re spread out a bit more. And once the goods are offloaded, questions remain as to how quickly they can be delivered. Like Bush’s speech on the aircraft carrier, Biden’s “mission accomplished” speech will likely go down as an infamous lie.