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Sat Oct 17, 2020, 06:43 AM

Joe Biden Has Changed (The Atlantic)

Last edited Sat Oct 17, 2020, 07:15 AM - Edit history (1)

"If Joe Biden prevails, his basement will rest alongside William McKinley’s front porch in the annals. In his subterranean retreat, Biden not only sat still while his opponent spectacularly self-destructed, but also underwent a metamorphosis. He entered it a cautious pragmatist, yearning for a reversion to the time before Donald Trump; he left convinced of his chance to become a latter-day Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Over the spring and summer, Biden inverted the historic template of the Democratic nominee. According to time-honored political logic, a candidate poses as a bleeding heart in the primary, only to retrace his or her steps back to the center in the general. During his time in his basement, by contrast, Biden’s ambitions for the presidency began to acquire a grandiosity that his intramural battle with Bernie Sanders hardly anticipated.

Following two consecutive presidents who professed to disdain politics, Biden is a politician to the core—attuned to the limits of the possible, always finding his way to the epicenter of the zeitgeist. As he cocooned in Delaware, the pandemic, the ensuing economic fallout, and the protests against racial inequality reset the context for the next presidency. Biden grasped that.

Biden came to understand that the necessity of public investment presented a singular opportunity to transform American life. In August, he promised $2 trillion to combat climate change, to be spent, in part, on 1 million unionized jobs and 1.5 million affordable-housing units. This wasn’t a pure transposition of the Green New Deal, but it was spiritually aligned. As David Wallace-Wells has noted, Biden’s proposed spending is more than 20 times the size of Barack Obama’s expenditure on green energy. And having endured the primary derided as a collaborator of Strom Thurmond’s, he started describing systemic racism in far blunter language than any previous nominee, and elevating police reform to the center of his plans."

More: https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/10/biden-wants-transform-america-really/616748/

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Arrow 28 replies Author Time Post
Reply Joe Biden Has Changed (The Atlantic) (Original post)
femmedem Oct 17 OP
Sherman A1 Oct 17 #1
femmedem Oct 17 #3
Sugarcoated Oct 17 #2
Buckeyeblue Oct 17 #4
PatSeg Oct 17 #15
patricia92243 Oct 17 #5
PatSeg Oct 17 #19
Boogiemack Oct 17 #6
Magoo48 Oct 17 #7
nuxvomica Oct 17 #8
ms liberty Oct 17 #9
XanaDUer2 Oct 17 #10
FloridaBlues Oct 17 #11
Buns_of_Fire Oct 17 #12
PatSeg Oct 17 #17
BumRushDaShow Oct 17 #13
XanaDUer2 Oct 17 #14
DeminPennswoods Oct 17 #16
dalton99a Oct 17 #18
niyad Oct 17 #20
localroger Oct 17 #21
dixiechiken1 Oct 17 #24
BadgerMom Oct 17 #22
Fiendish Thingy Oct 17 #23
c-rational Oct 17 #25
Skittles Oct 17 #26
mzmolly Oct 17 #27
Blue_true Oct 17 #28

Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 06:59 AM

1. I too have noted the change

At first the thought of a “re-set Presidency” was of great concern as I believed and still do that we simply do not have time for such a concept. My vote was cast for Biden on September 30th and there was never any doubt that I would not cast it for whomever was the nominee. That said, I was very happy to hear him at the Town hall this last week answering questions discussing problems and the ideas to correct them. I have great hopes for a Biden administration.

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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #1)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 07:14 AM

3. Me too. He wasn't my first or even my second choice early in the primary season

but by the time my state's primary came along, I voted for him, and now I think he's just the right person for this moment.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 07:06 AM

2. YES

My observation, as well... I knew he would get there, I knew he would listen to the progressives. I knew he would meet the moment!

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 07:19 AM

4. Great article. Thanks for sharing.

One thing I've noticed about Biden is that in the last few months he seems to be talking a lot more about policy than he talks about Trump. I think he's been providing a good contrast.

I'm ever hopeful that he'll get a chance to implement these ideas.

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Response to Buckeyeblue (Reply #4)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:53 AM

15. Yes

He doesn't need to go after Trump all the time. Whenever Trump speaks or tweets, it benefits Joe without him saying a word. His increased focus on policy shows that he isn't just the "better than Trump" candidate, he is the best person for the job at this particular time. People can comfortably vote for Joe as an excellent candidate regardless of who his opponent is.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 07:44 AM

5. "become a latter-day Franklin D. Roosevelt." Just what we need :)

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Response to patricia92243 (Reply #5)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 09:02 AM

19. I've heard a lot of people say that lately

It dawned on me awhile back and I'm so glad other people are recognizing it as well. Joe won't just be an adequate replacement for Trump, he will be an excellent president in his own right. I think a lot of people will be surprised.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 07:49 AM

6. Most of us may not remember but this kind of town hall and in depth speaking was what we liked

about a young Bill Clinton. He talked and listened to the voters. Never in a hurry, looked you in the eye and was never uncomfortable with minorities or women.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 07:52 AM

7. I'm not only more encouraged now about Joe,

but extremely optimistic as well about the cabinet possibilities he has before him.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:04 AM

8. Biden is going far beyond being just the anti-Trump candidate

He would suffice in just that role, as Trump is such a huge deficit I'd be okay with replacing him with a scarecrow, but instead he has established himself as a powerful force for change beyond even the old status quo. Obama was like that as well, even though McConnell had "jammed him into iron pants," to paraphrase Hemingway, he still "danced".

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:16 AM

9. Great article. K&R. n/t

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:25 AM

10. K & R'd

I got chills

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:27 AM

11. Good article thanks for posting!

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:39 AM

12. I'm feeling something I haven't permitted myself to feel for a long time: Hope. nt

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Response to Buns_of_Fire (Reply #12)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:58 AM

17. Yes

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:49 AM

13. He's definitely changed

Just watching that last Town Hall, he seems to have been (as has been the goal for many in the party) pulled to the left, where he is more "Center left" than "Center right". I doubt he'll ever go much further "left" because there is a large sector that could be considered "middle" who have all kinds of combinations and permutations about certain subjects of concern fought over by either left or right.

But considering that he was once considered one of the "poorest" Senators in the Senate and commuted back and forth between Delaware and D.C. almost every night, he has been slowly letting the one end - the "rant against the billionaires" side come out, to bookend his usual "for the working person" side.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:50 AM

14. K & R'd

I got chills

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:54 AM

16. I was hopeful Biden would see his chance

to be a truly transformative president. I'm glad he has. He only needs to find his own Frances Perkins and Harold Ickes.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 09:01 AM

18. Kick

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 09:04 AM

20. KNR

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 09:08 AM

21. The thing is, politics is the job

The problem with putting in an "outsider" who "isn't a politician" is that if you want to get stuff done, you need to understand and be able to work the system. Jimmy Carter is without a doubt one of the most honorable and moral person to hold the job in living memory, but he wasn't very effective because he was exactly what he claimed to be during his campaign. And at this point with all the damage done we need someone who can be effective, even if we don't always like the tactics they have to use or the compromises they have to make to get it done. And Biden is definitely that guy.

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Response to localroger (Reply #21)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 09:59 AM

24. YES. This is *exactly* the thing...

I believe Trump and his ilk got the votes of people who were tired of "business as usual" and wanted to, in their words, "burn it all down." The same people who hate our government, who don't believe in our government, are the very ones for whom these low-information voters vote to run it. They've been doing it for years. Remember St. Ronnie's favorite laugh line, "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the Government, and I'm here to help"?

Joe Biden wasn't my first choice. But I now firmly believe that he is the PERFECT man to lead us through this moment in our history. There will be no traditional "transition," because these clowns have never learned to govern. Joe has the Executive experience to know how things are supposed to work. And he will surround himself with all the best people. He will hit the ground running. No OJT necessary. And he appears to be actually listening to what we, the voters, want. I expect big things to come and I can't wait.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 09:08 AM

22. Kick

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 09:20 AM

23. Joe wants to be a new FDR, yet there are those who urge him to be a cautious pragmatist

Biden wants to meet the moment, and heal the nation with the substantive changes required to stop the suffering and move the nation forward, yet there are those, both in Washington and here on DU who advise caution and to “go slow” despite the once-in-a-century opportunity and momentum for change.

I for one will be cheering and urging Biden to take bold steps and make sweeping changes to benefit all Americans, despite the political risks.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 10:04 AM

25. Wonderful article. When I read the first paragraph I got goose bumps. For in his basement,

in stillness, Joe Biden found his stillness, his center. I am so thankful Joe is our nominee. He does IMO know what this country needs - to find our soul again.

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 04:59 PM

26. good

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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:12 PM

27. From sociopathic capitalism, to a plan for Americans.

Biden is such a familiar figure that many campaign reporters haven’t seriously scrutinized his policy or biography or coterie of advisers. Closer attention would have revealed a trail of evidence that suggests the sincerity of his transformational ambitions and a plausible plan for actualizing them.


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Response to femmedem (Original post)

Sat Oct 17, 2020, 08:33 PM

28. Great leaders adjust to meet the demands of their time.

FDR had the challenge of the Great Depression and Nazism in his time. LBJ had the challenge of segregation and vicious racial violence toward Blacks, Russian Space advances, and impoverished elderly people during his time. Both men rose to the biggest challenges before them, while not being great on others (FDR failed to confront racism head on and LBJ failed to end our involvement in Vietnam).

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