In the last two presidential elections, much was made of Trump’s lack of political experience. Trump bested Hillary, who by many accounts was the most accomplished and well-prepared candidate to run for the office. Yet four years later the victor of that race was a textbook definition of a Washington insider – whose most memorable accomplishments in nearly five decades in elective office was presiding over the Bork and Thomas Supreme Court hearings (unless you want to review the financial successes of his family….). A look at our last century of leaders puts Biden into stark perspective – as many demonstrated a strong commitment to our country via sacrifice.
Nearly 90 years ago, an assistant Navy secretary and governor of New York was elected – Franklin Roosevelt. Those who succeeded him brought military experience: Truman (WWI veteran, U.S. Senate and vice-president); Eisenhower (5 star general who led D-Day), Kennedy (from a well-known family, WWII, US House and Senate), Nixon (WWII, US. House, Senate and Vice-president), Ford (WWII, US House and Vice-president), Carter (Navy submariner, GA Governor), and Reagan (WWII, CA Governor). Lyndon Johnson was the only non-military man in those decades, but he brought years of legislative experience in DC (so perhaps Biden has a path to follow?).
I watched a movie entitled “41” – an extended interview directly with President George H.W. Bush. He achieved many accomplishments, especially before his rise to national politics – in fact, his resume truly was one of the best of any presidential candidate in the past century (yes, even better than Hillary). His resume included WWII pilot, UN Ambassador, US House, CIA Director, China liaison (“ambassador”) and Vice-President. If there was anyone whose experiences argued well for serving as our nation’s leader, George H. W. Bush was that person.
After 41, we had a decisive change from military leaders — as well as a generational change, as the military event focus was VietNam and not WWII. Clinton had no military experience (protested against VietNam and had an unusual history concerning the draft) but was a state official (attorney general and governor). Bush 43 served in the military as a national guard pilot during VietNam and then as Texas governor. Obama had no military experience and brought less than a decade of state legislative experience and less than a full-term as a US Senator to office. Trump attended military school but received deferments from service during VietNam; he brought years of business experience to his first political office as president.
That takes us to Biden – who began his DC career as Nixon won his re-election in 1972; he served in the Senate until 2009 and then as vice-president until 2017. He campaigned for unity, noting that he would not be a leader for those who supported him (blue states) but also the red states – as president for “all Americans”. His past troubles – from physical closeness to women to his abuse of power with his son in the Ukraine, from the questionable China ties to his challenges during speeches – were of no consequence to the mainsteam media.
One of the most troubling are those ever-changing positions during the campaign (remember his multiple positions on fracking) and leads to the moniker “jellyfish in chief”; jellyfish appear to change colors, carry a sting and have no spine. After preaching unity and cooperation across party aisles, he has rammed through more executive orders in his first 10 days than the last FOUR presidents combined in that time frame. This is despite the fact that his party controls BOTH houses of Congress – so he can’t argue “I could not expect Congress to act”.
Other opportunities to demonstrate unity early in his administration have been squandered. Those executive orders – decried by the Left during the Trump administration – not only altered the course of many programs and policies but in many cases completely reversed course to appease the far left, despite any damage it causes (from Keystone Pipeline termination to border protection relaxation). In another vein, Biden could have encouraged the Democrat leaders in Congress to seek other alternatives than “Trump – Impeachment II” – as there was never a serious doubt the Senate would find 67 votes for conviction (aside from all the legal and constitutional issues with the process). Instead of using his heavy hand he wielded with these orders, he washed his hands on impeachment and refused to issue any encouragement to move on with the business of the country.
There is a name for one who leads alone, exercising power or control in an unreasonable or arbitrary way – tyrant. It is quite similar to one who tells people what to do in an autocratic way or determines behavior in a particular sphere – dictator. Those of us in Illinois have first-hand experience with such leadership, thanks to current occupants in Springfield. Will the media continue its fawning praise over these types of actions or actually DO ITS JOB? If the sycophants remain in control, at what point will the indignation of the majority in our state, our nation, reach the point of no return and demand better from our leaders? Don’t rely on Jellyfish 46!