Letter 2 America for April 29, 2021

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Dear America,

I have to confess that I didn't watch President Biden's speech last night.  In fact, I have to admit that I haven't watched any other president's since the year that some Republican yokel Republican congressman exclaimed "liar" during one of President Obama's State of the Union addresses.  It is true that most presidents articulate some form of the  truth during their annual summaries of our national state, purportedly for the benefit of the nation but primarily to keep their hats in the ring for the next presidential election cycle.  And then of course there was Trump, whose speeches one and all were nothing but self-serving panegyrics intended to boost his own ego and arrogate more power to himself.  But I have read the commentary on Biden's speech, and though I am not sorry I didn't spend an hour and five minutes watching it because I already knew what he was doing by virtue of paying attention for the past 99 days, the comments of professional observers and shills alike are much as I would have expected them to be: a Trump acolyte panned it on the basis of form, a rabid conservative with only a seemingly tenuous connection to the facts denouncing the speech with contrived interpretations of the past to support his opinion, and of course the mild accolades to high praise of the commentators from the left side of the political spectrum.

Of all the comments I read, the one coming from the political observer I respect most, David Gergen, meant the most in light of what we have all seen on the news about President Biden's plans for our future.  Gergen spared us all his evaluation of Biden or his speech by pointing out that only two modern presidents, FDR and LBJ dared to propound the magnitude of socio-economically bold plans that Biden has proposed, and their names are in the history books with almost no sign of stigma attached to either one.  And in addition, both of those former presidents are recognized as great and profound agents of positive change by their posterity; as leaders whose effects on the nation and the world were palpable and humanely motivated.  Gergen eschewed such encomia for Biden, but pointed out that, if he succeeds in his plans for a new kind of America not contemplated since before the advent of "Reaganomics" in the early 1980's, Biden's programs will elevate him to the same pantheon that those two of his predecessors occupy all by themselves in our presidential history since the turn of the last century and before.  And I must say that what Gergen wrote is in principle what I have been thinking since Biden's proposed legislation started coming out of the White House.

For the first time since Johnson's "Great Society" arched over our political conversation, a president has put together a comprehensive plan for renewal of the prosperity that working Americans shared until the corporate executive class and those endowed by progenitors who made their fortunes by hook or by crook became the American analog of Russian oligarchs.  And now, like Johnson, Biden is intent on including everyone in this prosperity, regardless of color, and what's more in Biden's case, regardless of personal preferences or national origin.  I don't really care about hyperbole about socialism and "big government;"  it is time that someone on our political scene with the possible power to do something has come forward with a new grand design for an America that conforms to the promise of our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution.  There is room to criticize that notion by nibbling around the Hamiltonian edges, but it was intended that in America, all men (and since Title IX specifically included them, women) were created equal.  It was intended that each of us should have the "equal protections", "privileges and immunities" that each other of us has.  

Of course, more self-serving praise from us liberals...more effusive fluff...could come next, but I'll spare you.  The crux of it all is that for the first time since I can remember a presidential mantra being intoned, we have a president who is worthy of the title "Leader of the Free World."  I couldn't help but feel a sense of profound hope for us all when our president's Covid relief and infrastructure omnibus legislation proposals were reported, especially with the Trump era still visible in our rear view mirror, and Trump himself still hovering over the conservative tranche of our conservative polity.

So, America, I want to invite you to enjoy what could be the sun coming out from behind the clouds over our nation.  With the imposition of the cost of all this good work to be imposed on those who won't even miss it, it is a platform for our future, politically, socially, ethically and morally.  Perhaps, we have finally arrived.

Your friend,


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This page contains a single entry by Michael Wolf published on April 29, 2021 12:52 PM.

Letter 2 America for April 16, 2021 was the previous entry in this blog.

Letter 2 America for May 5, 2021 is the next entry in this blog.

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