j brown's body
"A Soros-backed animal"
- Jun 18, 2018
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
This decision to favor outreach over ideological intensity is perfectly credible coming from Biden. He is something of an endangered species — the gray-crested, legislative backslapper. His natural habitat is the cloakrooms, committee rooms and hideaway offices on the Senate side of Capitol Hill. He really did work with old-time, segregationist colleagues on issues of common interest. He really did develop lifelong friendships across the aisle.
Washington “insiders” such as Biden have been populist punching bags in recent years. But I would take the highly developed norms of that culture over Trump’s seedy carnival of corruption any day. Commitments to civility, bipartisanship, basic decency and public service are not mere nostalgia. They are anchors of social stability. They are foundations of good government. They are the moral architecture of democracy.
One of the reasons Biden's speech was so powerful to me is that it wasn't ideological. It was about decency. And that decency is missing in our culture wars brought on by populism. Growing up and interested in politics, I found the system slow and boring and mostly benefiting the entrenched power. And much of that is true. But I was spoiled and took it for granted as an impediment to change and improvement. I didn't notice it until it was gone. But what has replaced it is truly a horror show. Its so hopeful and gratifying to see it articulated again.