When They Call Biden Boring

As if the nation is not in need of reliable adult behavior

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All the talk by Republicans that President Joe Biden is boring says more about them than it does about him.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz, caught sleeping during the president’s address to a joint session of Congress last week, later sought to distract from his latest act of carelessness by saying Biden was “boring but radical.” Several weeks earlier, Texas’ other senator, John Cornyn, criticized Biden for not tweeting very much, saying that when he did tweet it is “unimaginably conventional.” Added Steven Law, CEO of the Senate Leadership Fund Super PAC focused on securing a GOP Senate majority (and former chief of staff of Mitch McConnell): “He’s bland.”

Honestly? The attempts at criticism by these guys made me laugh, since their comments could not hide how desperately they are struggling to find a line of attack against the calm, reassuring tones and low-key tactics of the current White House empath.

But it also got me thinking about the profound disconnect between what most of America has suffered through during the last four years and the audience to which these Republicans are speaking. That is, the difference between feeling the constant assault of a reckless malignant narcissist intent on grabbing the news cycle to keep the spotlight on himself, versus reveling in the sensation and excitement of a strongman leader who’s sticking it to the libs and exercising power.

I, for one, could not be more relieved to have a serious president focused on constructive governance and real challenges, who’s more interested in putting in place systems and strategies than ranting and raving about what a great job he’s doing while relying on an endless parade of corrupt, incompetent associates. Maybe, in another time, when the nation is not exhausted by all the dangerous sensation, the holder of the Oval Office will feel obliged to turn up the entertainment value in order to capture the public’s imagination and carry out her policies. But not now.

You don’t have to just listen to me on this topic. Consider some of the crowd-sourced comments I gathered in response to this tweet.

Let’s put aside the strong feelings about the way Cruz conducts his senatorial duties, and focus on what people have to say about the “boring” way Joe Biden is conducting his presidential responsibilities. For your reading pleasure:

  • I prefer boring. Suits me just fine.

  • I do not want an "exciting" leader. At all.

  • It's wonderful waking up every day not having to worry about what horrible thing has happened overnight. I can actually sleep.

  • Boring Presidents are so in right now.

  • Yep. I'll take boring over sociopath any day.

  • Love me some nice boring compassion.

  • Thank God for boring. Especially since it comes with effective governing, smart leadership, dedication to country instead of grifting the USA, serving the American people.

  • I love our current President who is as chill as a ripe watermelon in a mountain creek on a hot summers day.

  • I have frequently spoken to my friends about how refreshing it is to have a “boring” president that isn’t on TV every day lying and stirring up controversy and racism. Donald Trump was a bad TV show that would have been canceled if he wasn’t president.

  • I will take boring and effective any day of the week. Most peaceful time I have had in years.

  • Not boring! Actually, for real, STABLE !!!!!

  • Boring is the new Sexy, just sayin'

I could go on. As you can imagine, people had and have a lot more to say. But let’s not miss this particular moment, when we can see with remarkable clarity the seismic shift from a nation paying the price of letting celebrity and entertainment values decide its fate (special thanks to Mark Burnett and his fake Apprentice) to a nation able to rely on the prosaic performance of strategic policymaking and effective governance (special thanks to James Clyburn and Stacey Abrams).

Let’s hope this shift can linger more than one presidential cycle, despite the continuing enticements of celebrity culture, the need to be entertained, the absence of adequate civic education, the lack of media literacy, and the dangerously cynical calculation of people like Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley who’ve witnessed the fragility of our democracy and recognize the potential to employ political violence and autocratic strategies to get and keep power.

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